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Monday, July 29, 2013

Friends


This weekend was a reminder of what a wonderful group of friends I have, so many people taking the time out to give some support to those going through such a difficult moment of their lives, a life-changing event, something that is almost unimaginably unbearable.  Such a unique and beautiful group, they have changed me markedly for the better over the years.  I dearly hope that there is a positive outcome.  Never say never.

I didn’t really want to talk about myself given that something far more important has been going on than any minor dramas I may have but I am reluctantly forced into it.

When you have so many close friends, it is inevitable that sometimes friction causes a falling out, normally temporarily, sometimes permanently.

Not one of my choosing and not one I deserve.  I am not going to elaborate as we both may calm down in time and I prefer not to have such things discussed publicly, nor do I want to say something that I may regret in the aftermath of an argument.  However this one may be irrecoverable.

All I ask is that if you hear someone bad mouthing me in the coming days/weeks then please remember that there are always two sides to a story.  If you have to get involved then please come to your own judgements. If you feel I have been out of order in any way feel free to tell me.  My true friends know me well enough and know I am a good person.

Frustrated that I have to write about myself and my relatively minor issues when the perspective is that such discrepancies truly pale into insignificance compared to the misfortunates of others and my heart truly goes out to those closely affected.

Apologies if it is insensitive to be somewhat narcissist right now but I have to defend myself and not allow any damage to be done – in this case it would be totally unfairly.

Will definitely be having a few pints of gravy this week.

Onwards and upwards, as they say.

Friday, July 19, 2013

Hot, hot, hot.

Just in case you haven’t noticed, and for those in the various foreign spy agencies following me, it has been pretty hot recently.  For those moaning, don’t worry, two weeks from now you will be fed up of the rain and moaning about that instead.  I prefer those who keep changing what they moan about rather than drone on about the same old thing all the time.  Creative moaning.

For those in the Kremlin, do not worry, your summer is around the corner.

It has been quite an exceptional spell of weather in terms of unbroken sunny, dry and hot weather.  Forecastedby me and hardly any other forecaster.  This pleases me exceptionally, I long dreamt of being a weather forecaster and I am.  And I am good.  I am now just short of 150 likes on my weather page, well up from 30 at the beginning of the year.  It is noticeable that every time we experience unusual weather, the interest in my page goes up.

And it isn’t only me who likes my weather forecasts – I had a compliment this week from a very unexpected source, from someone who actually works in the weather industry.  This is a massive thing for me, and makes it so worthwhile, considering I spend several hours a week studying and writing my forecasts, and do not have access to data that those for example in the Met Office have.

The challenge now is to keep it up, and improve.

It did remind me that I shouldn’t give up my dream to work full-time in the weather industry one day.  Just because I don’t have a meteorology degree should not mean that I cannot fulfill my dream one day.  You never know.

I would like to say a massive thanks to those who read my forecasts, offer me compliments and especially those who spread the word.  Thanks to you, maybe one day I will achieve my childhood dream.  Although you could say I am living the dream right now as I always wanted to work in Bracknell.  Albeit I did not dream of being a credit controller when I was child.  I wonder if anyone has ever said "when I grow up, I want to be a credit controller"?

Anyway, I hope you are ready for the rain - I know I am going to enjoy not being in a boiling hot office and being able to sleep with the windows closed soon and not being woken up sporadically by selfish dickheads on motorbikes (no general offence to motorbikers, as you are generally not the type to mess with, just those who choose to make more noise than Concorde when the majority of residents are trying to sleep).

Oh and if I have been a little grumpy recently, it is nothing to do with the beautiful weather.  Honest.  I ran out of gravy and it is too hot to walk to Morrisons to stock up.

Saturday, July 13, 2013

Gutted

I should be at Cocoon In The Park right now, having a brilliant experience.

I have a ticket but the cost of the trains and hotel that were required made it prohibitive.

It hurts.  Yes I could have gone and used my overdraft and repaid it later.  That isn't my style.

I am pissed off with myself for my inability to save and my whimsical pursuit of short-term pleasures.

Which led me onto lots more negative thoughts about being a failure in life.

Where the fuck did that come from?!

Woooooooosssssssshhhhhh.

Anyway, reality has returned, James is different nowadays anyway as he does need to achieve some goals.

All will be good, I will just ride out this disappointment in myself (I do set high expectations) and use this unexpected low point as a source of inspiration.

Maybe the sun got to me.  I am still the best weather forecaster in Reading.  Oh do hurry up thunderstorm.

Shit, I just got all emotional.  I'm ok.  Honest!  Just a teeny wobbler.

Friday, July 12, 2013

Ricardo Villalobos @ fabric 06/07/2013

I was fabulously excited last week before going to fabric for the first time this year, convinced it would be my best night out all year.  Just in case you don't know, fabric is my favourite nightclub in the world, and Ricardo Villalobos is my favourite DJ in the world.

We arrived around 1am after I had done a little sobering up to surprisingly no queue (for members).  In fact the night never became as busy as I am used to for Ricardo Villalobos.

We started in room 2 and in particular we were both very impressed with Konrad Black, some of the tracks he played were outstanding, really good to dance to and a step up in pace and sound quality from the previous DJs, who also deserve credit.

Room 2 was too ridiculously hot though, at least where we were near the DJ and as soon as Craig Richards started, we found our way to Room 1 - the place where I feel most at home in the world.

Craig Richards played an excellent set, as you would expect, much more techno than I was expecting and some very cool electro/early hip-hop tracks were a particular highlight.

The crowd was not a highlight.  My lovely dancing partner decided to do some market research to discover the motivation of the crowd - last time we were at a Ricardo night, almost everyone we spoke to was gushing in their admiration for him.  This time it was a 50/50 split between fans and clubbers who had no idea who he was.

There are many reasons why I am glad I am not a girl.  I don't want to give birth, I don't want periods nor would I want to spend 5 hours getting ready for a night out when I can spend 5 hours drinking beer and still look beautiful.  Neither would I want my arse groped regularly and to have to beat off streams of sleazy men - tourist season is clearly in full flow and it showed.  I went to a gay club many years ago in Ibiza and had my arse grabbed a disturbing number of times so I do actually know what it feels like.

A piece of advice for guys - try talking to girls and being nice.  It sometimes works.  Actually it is Friday and I am in a good mood so I am offering a second piece of advice especially for those going out to exercise their dick rather than their feet - fuck off to the shit bars.

A question for fabric if you are reading - have you considered head-hunting Sven Marquart?!  Then again he would probably turn me away!

Anyway onto the important bit.  Mr Villalobos.

I always say expect the unexpected with him but I know roughly the bounds of what he is going to play.  Or I thought I did.  So Villalobos being Villalobos he decided to turn the book upside down and hammer out these strange house/techno hybrids at around 130bpm - I haven't been dancing to music that fast since I was dancing to a fire alarm at my mate's hard house night 7 years ago (the fire alarm was the best audio of the night).

The energy was impressive, highlighted in the video below.  I was blown away but by 930am we had had enough as though I loved it, I was totally unprepared for it.


In a way I felt disappointed that I had not had the musical experience from Ricardo that I had been so excited about but also I was intrigued about this new faster music and really enjoyed something totally different from the norm.

I am questionning my musical slow-down - I normally listen to 120bpm and DJ 124bpm at most - is 130bpm the way ahead?  I doubt it.

It was the best night of the year, I had a great time there, before and the afters but still not the perfect night I require.  8.5 out of 10.

Wednesday, July 03, 2013

Strawberry Distress

I think this is a return to form for my complaints...

***************************

Dearest Sainsburys

I have a friend that moved out to Australia and she has been watching Wimbledon and is very upset that she cannot get British strawberries in Australia.

I wanted to rescue the damsel-in-strawberryless-distress so I agreed to send some over in my teleport machine.

However my teleport machine is quite particular in terms of the integrity of objects it sends, especially living items, and it rejected the strawberries due to “Intolerable Levels of Infection”.

To explain in non-teleport terminology, the strawberries that were delivered to me on Friday were already mouldy by Saturday despite having several days date on them.

Please can you rectify this situation.

Kind regards
James

****************************

Dear Mr Winfield

Thank you for your email about your recent order. We only want to deliver great quality products so I am sorry that the strawberries were of such poor quality and were rejected by your teleport machine. I can understand how dissatisfied you must be, especially as this is not the service you have come to expect from us.

Our colleagues are trained to use their initiative and experience when selecting products. I have passed your comments on to the online manager, who will speak with our colleagues at the store who shopped for your order to ensure that you receive great quality items in all your future deliveries.

All our products come to us from reputable suppliers. We insist on strict procedures and quality controls through all the stages of handling, storage and display to ensure that they reach you in perfect condition and the taste and texture should reflect this.

I have sent an evoucher for £2 to your email address as a refund for this item.  You can enter this code next time you check out and the amount will be deducted from the cost of your order.

We appreciate you taking the time to contact us as your feedback helps us improve our products and services. We look forward to seeing you online shortly.

Yours sincerely

x
Customer Manager

Monday, July 01, 2013

Farewell Mervyn King - Total Failure


The British honours system doesn’t always get it right.  Fred Goodwin and Jimmy Saville were two that I re-salutated from Sir to Scumbag long before their titles were removed.

Mervyn King is another one who needs to be dethroned.

There are many who seem to in praise of Mr King, mostly due to his record on taming inflation.  Inflation was indeed a major economic problem for the UK for several decades, however for the first two thirds of Mr King’s reign, it was targeted at 2% and mostly achieved.  Inflation it seemed, had been tamed.

But why was this?  Was it the setting of interest rates newly under the command of the Governor of the Bank of England, and his monetary policy committee?  Or was it Thatcher’s defeat of the unions?  Or was it the influx of cheap goods from China?  Arguably it was a combination of all three factors, plus a variety of other lesser factors.  Certainly not just Gordon's stooge.

However the targeted rate of inflation was not the rate that included house prices.

The house price boom, encouraged by the Bank of England and the Labour government, made possible by extremely clever bankers and allowed by wholly inept regulators was under Mervyn King’s watch.  This boom was totally unsustainable and should have been stopped long before the crash.

Further to this, Mervyn King also presided over the worst crash and economic downturn in living memory.

This is a total failure and I wholeheartedly wish to say Fuck Off Mervyn King.  Stooge of the socialist gold-seller.

I offer a cautiously optimistic welcome to his replacement, all the way from sensible Canada – Mark Carney.

Whilst I believe that revolution is the ultimate goal for The Bank of England, evolution must be the order of the day given the sensitivity of the economy.

For me, the sooner that interest rates rise and stop rewarding the reckless borrowers, and punishing the sensible savers, the better.  Sadly, given the precarious nature of the recovery, now is probably not the moment.