Thursday, 12 December 2013


I've been a foolish, foolish boy (not for the first time I hear Grandma in Cyprus exclaim).  The headphone socket on my mobile stopped working.  As I'm addicted to listening to music whenever I'm travelling, I handed it over to be repaired straight away.  Stored on it are passwords, usernames, pin numbers and everything else any criminal might want to steal my identity and plunder everything I have.  I didn't think about it, and I'm not suggesting that anyone at the shop might be mischievous, but who know what might happen?  It's this sort of thoughtlessness that gives the criminally inclined the opportunity they need.  As they said on Dad's Army 'Stupid Boy'.

Whilst the ruling elite were celebrating the life of 'A giant of History', and David Cameron was having a selfie with a tasty Scandinavian blonde, we were also celebritied up on Wednesday.  Obviously it was a celebration of Mandela's achievements, but it was quite Hogmanay was it? Mind you, Cameron is the man who suggested that next year we will be able to mark 100 years since the outbreak of World War 1, and the celebrations will bring us together as a nation like the 2012 Olympics did.  I'd like to say a few words about Mandela, but I doubt I could usefully add anything to the eulogising that has gone on already.  My only hope is that his global legacy is as powerful and long lasting as it should be.

UP was visited by Her Maj, and managed to get the back of his head in the Daily Mail.  Truth is, as it's the Daily Mail, it's probably a good thing that it is the back of his head.  She was opening the new Barnardo's HQ with her daughter-in-law. UP had hoped to pop round the corner to have a quick fag with Camilla, but evidently she didn't have a spare ciggie on her.  Here, courtesy of PA and the the Daily Mail is the picture - yes Queenie does appear to be smiling at him...

Meanwhile The Cat's Mother and I went to the launch of Jonathan Meade's new publication...not a book, but a box of postcards with suitably incoherent captions called Pidgin Snaps.  I'd got involved because it's being published by Unbound which is a publishing house that raises money by asking supporters to contribute to the cost of publishing.  It's a modern spin on an old tradition evidently.  In return for your donation, you get a copy of the publication and a range of benefits.  One of which was to attend the launch party.  Now, I'm a great fan of Jonathan Meades, and have enjoyed his TV programmes over the decades. He's always seemed clever, erudite and entertaining. Things didn't feel quite right when I didn't quite get the benefits I was expecting, and then when we looked through the 100 postcards, The Cat's Mother's only comment was that I took better photos.  We arrived at the launch event in a restaurant that I know and love, but haven't been to for many, many years.  To call it an event may have been an exaggeration...we were squashed in the corner of a bar without a canape to be seen (I was starving and even a crisp would have done).  Yes I know a bit of a first world issue (again) and forced to listen to the publisher who cornered us and could bore for Britain as she rattled on about how clever she is.  Eventually Mr Meade deigned to speak.  He was crude, rude and unappealing in extremis.  The use of the 'C' word was bad enough before he went on to tell a particularly vulgar story about a famous author, and bodily fluids, whom he described as a 'dwarf genius'.  So I doubt I'll be paying much attention to Mr Meade in future.