Saturday, 31 March 2012

C & H

Calvin and Hobbes

Southend Flights

Travellers in the South East will have another airport from which to escape Britain next week, when easyJet starts services from London Southend.

From Monday, it will begin flights from the airport – situated between Southend and Rochford – to Barcelona, Amsterdam and Belfast, and from Wednesday it will begin services to Alicante and Faro.
It is hoped this will be the beginning of a comeback for the airport, which, during the Sixties, was Britain’s third-busiest, behind Heathrow and Manchester. At its height it flew nearly 700,000 passengers each year to destinations including Paris, Ostende, Rotterdam and the Channel Islands, but competition from cross-Channel ferry services and the growth of Stansted and Luton airports saw it fall into rapid decline. 
The seeds of its revival were sown in 2008, when it was bought by the Stobart Group, which has invested more than £100 million in regeneration. At present it has only one service: Aer Arann’s service to Waterford, Ireland. By the end of the year, there should be at least a dozen.
In addition to those services beginning next week, easyJet is planning to add flights to Ibiza (from April 28), Malaga and Majorca (May 1), Jersey (May 2), and Geneva (December), and Aer Arann is to start flying to Dublin on May 10. 

EasyJet, which this week ran an advertisement promoting the airport: (“An apology to the tanning salons of Essex. We can now fly all of your customers from London Southend to Spain, Portugal, the Balearics and beyond. Sorry about that,” it read), said it hopes to fly 800,000 people to or from Southend in the coming year. 

Carolyn McCall, the airline’s chief executive, said: “We are delighted to help put Southend Airport back on the map and we are sure that its fast, efficient and customer-friendly terminal, along with its great rail links to London, will make it a popular choice with our passengers.” 


Big of Them

Albert Einstein's theory about how fast the universe is expanding has been proved correct by British scientists who praised his "incredible accuracy".  He was known for words and phrases and here are 10 of his best quotes, as per TTel:

A person who never made a mistake never tried anything new.
Intellectuals solve problems; geniuses prevent them.
Science is a wonderful thing if one does not have to earn one's living at it.
The hardest thing in the world to understand is the income tax.
I am convinced that He (God) does not play dice.
Reality is merely an illusion, albeit a very persistent one.

I never think of the future. It comes soon enough.
The only thing that interferes with my learning is my education.
Two things are infinite: the universe and human stupidity; and I'm not sure about the universe.
I know not with what weapons World War III will be fought, but World War IV will be fought with sticks and stones.

The Hard Way

The common notion that most people only use one quarter of their brains was proven true in 1958 by Soviet scientists, in a series of grisly experiments on petty criminals.

Not Just in America

George Galloway winds Bradford by election
Cat impressionist George Galloway has landed on his feet again, after some how convincing the Bradford West by-election voters that he is ‘different’.
“This represents a rejection of the established politics”, claimed the established politician. “Though I must admit I thought it would be harder to get my old job back in a recession.”
“The people of Bradford have spoken”, declared Galloway, while rubbing one ear with his wrist.
“8 out of 10 homeowners said their MP’s a cat pervert.”
Galloway took the decision to stand in Bradford after realising there was enough room to swing a coup, if he pretended that he cared about the city, and could find it on a map.
Hailing his victory as ‘the single greatest moment in the universe, in the past, the present and the future’, Galloway humbly accepted the ceremonial expenses form and keys to a second home.
“This one’s for Iraq!”, he cried, while ordering a new carpet. “Can someone ask my agent to phone Endemol?”

Galloway Bradford victory

Galloway accused the three main parties of ‘living in a fantasy world’, then stuck one leg out and started licking his bottom.
While Labour and the Conservative party knew they didn’t have a cat’s chance in hell, they will still take umbrage at losing to such a flea-bitten old mouser.
“We will learn from this humbling experience”, claimed Cameron, as he set down a bowl of anti-freeze by the town hall.
“By rejecting us in this way, we know exactly where we stand with these people”, he went on.
“That’s why I’m unveiling the new combined Bradford incinerator, nuclear power plant and meat rendering factory.”
“There’s more than one way to skin a cat.”

Getting Ready

After a number of petrol stations closed on their advice, Dorset police have admitted that they completely underestimated public demand for overpriced sandwiches and charcoal briquettes.
The roads of Dorset have seen numerous incidents of high-speed chases involving motorists desperate to grab a bite to eat on the run.
In scenes he described as “like a cross between Mad Max and Supermarket Sweep”, Chief Constable of Dorset Police Mr Martin Baker, revealed that police had been “stretched to the limit” in their attempts to stop the gangs in their unrelenting quest for items sold in petrol stations.
“There have been numerous violent clashes between motorists fighting over charcoal briquettes and plant pots,” he said.
“We are appealing for witnesses to an incident involving a 43 year-old man from Bridport who was run off the road and attacked because he had a bag of top soil on the back seat.”

Petrol station closures

The outbreaks of chaos, which have been attributed to the government advising people to panic, look set to continue as people frantically try and stock up on petrol station shop items in anticipation of a tanker driver strike that hasn’t been announced.
25 year old David Burton, who was loading 12 bunches of daffodils, a selection of chocolate, 5 packs of sanitary towels and a squeaky pork chop shaped dog toy into the back of his car insisted it was best to be prepared.
“I don’t have a girlfriend, or a dog for that matter, but I need to be prepared in case I do,” he told us.
“If the police close petrol stations to ease traffic congestion then where are people going to buy things that they don’t need, but are told to buy?”
“People may think it’s unnecessary, but I’ll be the one laughing if supplies of kindling wood dry up.”

Britain's Best Street Food

As well as double-decker buses, black cabs and red phone boxes (that increasingly double as public lavatories), people visiting the UK for the Olympics this year can look forward to another quintessentially British sight. Up and down the country, people will be clamping folded newspapers under their arms, fiddling with their smartphones and dutifully joining some of the biggest queues you’ve ever seen.  As per SL:

But the thing keeping them there won’t be the prospect of a ride on an oversized ferris wheel or even an impromptu audition on The X Factor. It will be a tiny team huddled in a van or crammed behind a stall serving sizzling portions of food.
But it’s not just any food — messy cheeseburgers served barbecue-scorched in freshly baked buns. Vietnamese baguettes overflowing with griddled garlic pork and fiery spices. Guacamole-slathered steak burritos that are so big you need two hands and a workbench to eat them. Like those growing lines of people, the list goes on.
It doesn’t take a food-obsessive, or even a mildly observant person dodging the hordes outside the local farmers’ market, to know that the street food renaissance isn’t going away any time soon. But why the continued clamour for simple food served in cardboard trays? And how has the humble mobile eatery, a medium once associated with soggy cones of chips, thimbles of scalding tea and late-night hot dogs that might as well have been served with a complimentary side order of Imodium, suddenly started dishing up Michelin-grade food?
For one, the unrelenting grimness of the economic forecast has signalled a shift in dining culture from fancy to unfussy. The pinnacle of gastronomic achievement used to be a plate of complex sauces and foam that required a second mortgage to enjoy. But now people will happily endure a prolonged wait in a blustery car park to try a £3.50 hot dog they’ve read about on Twitter.
Also, talented home cooks with an entrepreneurial eye no longer need to beg bank managers, sell organs or fumble with a flipchart on Dragons’ Den. All you need now is the money to secure a pitch and a modest mobile cooker.
Another theory on the boom is the sizable influence of global street-food culture. Which is not to say that Britain doesn’t have its own fast-food heritage: from Victorian vendors serving penny pies and pickled whelks out of rickety carts to the baffling popularity of the tripe shop in post-war Lancashire, there’s a surprising variety to kerbside cuisine in this country. But today’s street chefs, their passports bulging with exotic visas, are scouring the globe in search of new flavours and then mingling them with our own quality produce.

(Image credit:

This means you don’t have to go to the street markets of Tel Aviv to track down succulent shawarma kebabs or fryer-fresh falafel. You needn’t brave US immigration to enjoy LA-style tacos, artery-furring Texan barbecue or sauerkraut-spiked New York hot dogs. And the only ‘border’ you have to cross for an authentically Mexican burrito is the high street.
As with any new phenomenon there have been grumbles of dissent from some. South London burger van-turned-West End sensation Meat Liquor and pulled pork specialist Pitt Cue Co have enraged a few food critics and customers with a ‘no reservations’ and a no-queue-pushing-in policy that even Seinfeld’s Soup Nazi might term “a bit strict”.
Others have dismissed the pop-ups as a mere passing fad, and Times columnist Giles Coren recently theorised, tongue only just in cheek, that the inevitable conclusion to this would be “drive-by dining”, where a passing moped flings food directly in your mouth. There may yet be some truth in that.
But until then we’ll be wolfing down piping hot Portuguese churros soaked in thick chocolate sauce, devouring slices of wood-fired pizza and polishing off drool-worthy rib rolls. See you in the queue.

The Best in Britain

Greasy burgers on the way to the match? Not any more. ShortList’s Chris Harding tracks down the best street food our nation has to offer.


The English capital has the most vibrant street-food scene in the country, with tantalising new options seemingly arriving every month
  • Big Apple Hot Dogs Run by Abiye Cole, BAHDs is one of the biggest draws for London food-lovers. He creates his sausages from 100 per cent free-range pork, meaning they’re some of the best this side of the Atlantic. Where to find it Tues-Fri 12-6pm at 239 Old Street, EC1; King’s Boulevard, N1 (check to find out when);; @bigapplehotdogs
  • The Ribman Currently garnering attention for his enormous rib meat rolls, wraps and racks, Mark Gevaux pitches up on Brick Lane every Sunday at 3am to start the slow cooking process that makes his baby back ribs meltingly tender and delicious by the time they go on sale at 9am. Where to find it Thursdays at King’s Boulevard, N1; Sundays at Brick Lane Market, E1;; @theribman
  • Homeslice Described as “the love child of three men with a passion for making and eating woodfire pizza”, David Rowe, Ry Jessup and George Whiting hand-roll their dough at their stall on Saturdays at Broadway Market before it’s topped with fresh gourmet ingredients. Where to find it Saturdays 11am-4pm in the schoolyard of London Fields Primary School, Broadway Market, E8; Sundays 5-10pm at Ridley Rd Market Bar, E8;; @homesliceLDN
  • Tongue ’n Cheek Making the best of some of the less-regarded cuts: ox cheek served with polenta and seasonal veg or tongue rolls with salsa verde or horseradish and apple sauce. Cristiano Meneghin moved his family from Italy last year, and we couldn’t be more grateful. Where to find it King’s Boulevard, N1. Check to find out when;; @tonguencheeks


Bristol, with its metropolitan outlook is fertile ground for outstanding street eats
  • Coconut Chilli With a rich heritage of Indian cuisine — operator Navina Bartlett’s gran is reputed to have cooked in the kitchens of the Maharaja of Mysore — Coconut Chilli serves Indian wraps comprising deeply and expertly spiced lamb kofte or potato, taking inspiration from both East and West Indian cuisine. Where to find it Keep an eye on for information on when and where you can find Coconut Chilli. @coconutchilli
  • Aroy Thai The new enterprise from Jirat Bunjan, a chef who could formerly be found in the kitchens at Budokan, one of Bristol’s first and most popular pan-Asian restaurants. She serves Pad Thai glass noodles cooked fresh on her wok range — just like you’d see on the streets of Bangkok. But don’t overlook the fragrant Thai green curry. Where to find it Again, check out for updates on where you can find Aroy Thai in Bristol.


With its strong multicultural influence, it was inevitable that Scotland would be a buzzing part of the street food scene
  • Babu Bombay Street Kitchen Founded by native Bombayite Rachna Dheer and graphic designer Gail Finlayson when their dream of starting a restaurant proved too risky. Based in Glasgow, the pair hope to show that Indian food needn’t mean 3am curries and Tupperware boxes. Originally serving just one dish, the menu now changes weekly, and they offer lunchtime delivery.Where to find it Every first and third Saturday at Queen’s Park Farmers’ Market, Glasgow; every second Sunday at Stockbridge Artisan Market, Edinburgh; every second and fourth Saturday at Mansfield Park Farmers’ Market, Glasgow;; @babukitchen
  • Harajuku Kitchen Taking its name from the famously stylish (and bizarre) Harajuku district in the bustling Shibuya ward of Tokyo, Harajuku Kitchen offers its own take on authentic, wholesome Japanese food. Chef Kaori Tsuji-Simpson has drawn inspiration from the kitchens of her mother’s restaurant to serve dumplings, sushi rolls and her own yaki udon recipe. Tsuji-Simpson has a unique story regarding her family’s culinary inclinations: apparently her great-grandfather was one of the last remaining samurai in the empire and converted his house into a traditional Japanese restaurant — geishas and all — when the ancient institution was finally abolished in the late-19th century. Where to find it Like Harajuku Kitchen Japanese Deli on Facebook to keep abreast of Chef Kaori’s movements;


With a rich culinary tradition and some of our greatest natural food resources on its doorstep, it makes sense that Yorkshire should make a strong street-food showing
  • Fish& serves the most classic of British fast foods, but with a twist. Usually based on Leeds’ Commercial Street, Fish& also pops up at festivals across the country. Serving thoughtfully sourced and lovingly cooked fish and chips out of a van and trailer — called Hope and Dignity respectively — these aren’t fish and chips as you know them. Fish&’s offerings of lemon, lime and chilli-battered or masala-marinated fish alongside the more traditional beer batter mean these are more interesting fish and chips than even your favourite takeaway can do.Where to find it Commercial Street, Leeds LS1, outside the Halifax/at side of WHSmith;; @nofishybusiness
  • Greedy Bassets Kitchen Dave Lawson has thrown himself wholeheartedly into the street-food scene on a national level, travelling to London to meet other traders. Born out of a passion for all things Yorkshire, Greedy Bassets sources everything locally and can rustle up anything from Whitby crab linguine to Yorkshire chorizo on toasted brioche alongside Yorkshire cawl and hot chicken livers. They’re only just starting, but keep an eye on the Greedy Bassets — we’re expecting great things from them. Where to find it Like Greedy Bassets Kitchen on Facebook to follow its progress and keep up to date with its movements. They're on Twitter too: @greedybassets


The area has a richly varied food landscape, and in October 2011 Manchester hosted its first street food fair as part of the wider annual Food & Drink Festival
  • Las Paelleras Lee Tointon and Stephanie Probert are specialists in ‘big pan catering’ — in other words, the hearty paellas and stews of Spain. Their current menu includes three types of paella (including a delicious vegetarian option of piquante peppers, artichokes, fennel and broad beans) and three types of stew, as well as a nod towards the tapas tradition which has proved popular in Britain in the form of patatas bravas with chorizo. Using chorizo and rice sourced from Valencia and everything else from local suppliers, this is the authentic taste of Spain made with Macclesfield soul. Where to find it Third Saturday of the month at Artisan Market, Grove Street, Wilmslow; last Sunday of the month at Macclesfield Treacle Market, Chestergate, Macclesfield; @las_paelleras
  • Chillikoko Based in Cumbria but specialises in the Indian Ocean Creole food of the Seychelles. Brothers Chanel and Winston Vital are renowned throughout the north-west not just for their food but for the welcoming, friendly atmosphere they create while they cook traditional, authentic family recipes. Aromatic spices and herbs are key in dishes such as spicy Creole pork and chicken coconut curry. Where to find it Visit for dates and private bookings.

Or Just Telephone...

News Briefly from Daily Mash

Guardian readers exactly the same as Duchess of Cornwall

Love The Killing, hate Diana and go to bed with dreary eco-bores with pointless jobs.

Pilot restrained after admitting air travel is insane

Captain of JetBlue flight tells passengers they are 30,000ft in the air and that if they survive they will have to spend time in an airport.

Coming Home

ANDY Carroll will play for Liverpool against Newcastle this weekend in the hope it will trigger memories of his former behaviour.

Carroll will conceal his confusion beneath a confused expression
Since his move to Liverpool, the semi-tame £35M ponytail­-stand has struggled to remember what he used to do on Saturdays in between getting out of bed and getting incredibly drunk.

Anfield staff have had to shoo him away from the ticket booths and burger stalls, where he was caught trying to put on an apron, as Carroll continues his confused search for meaning.

Liverpool manager Kenny Dalglish said: “Every Friday night for the first three months we would find him near the Pier Head, making a keening noise for the Toon.
“Nevertheless, we’re hoping that in 90 minutes he can re­grasp the rudiments of a sport he’s been playing since he was a foal and reduce my looking the twat by enough of a margin to explain the whole Jordan Henderson confusion.”

Carroll will be transported to the Two Tracksuits For £10 stadium in Newcastle in a soundproofed box to stop him breaking free and galloping amongst his herd along the Tyne Quayside demanding tits be outed for unspecified lads.

Dalglish is hoping that the sight of several goals inevitably sailing into Liverpool's net will awaken some primal urge in Carroll to make his £8M-worth of leg do what it used to as a matter of instinct.

Assistant manager Steve Clarke said: “We used to rub the goal net with a piece of Dirk Kuyt’s bedding to entice him, so I’m sure it’ll work with Andy so long as there’s no scent of skank in the crosswind to confuse him.”


Steady On

A CRAZED motorist is brandishing a mobile phone on a garage forecourt, it has emerged.

The electricity reacts with the vapours
As the petrol crisis deepens, 38-year-old sales manager Roy Hobbs has been cordoned off by the military as he threatens to press the green 'call' button on his iPhone 3, which would trigger the vague but dreadful Thing That Happens When You Use Your Phone at a Garage.

It is believe that marksmen are in place on the roof of a nearby Toys 'R' Us, with instructions to shoot the father-of-two in the head if he moves to operate the phone.

Technologist Nikki Hollis said: "While it is not altogether clear why one must not use a mobile at a garage - no one has ever done it - we are fairly sure the result involves a crater, possibly also massive carnivorous slug things issuing from the bowels of the earth, like in the evergreen Kevin Bacon film

"Texting is fine though, it's just voice calls that are the problem."

Hobbs shouted: "I'm just an ordinary man who's had enough. Don't think I won't do this.

"In case my kids are watching this on television, daddy loves you and one day you'll understand."

He added: "I just want some petrol and a disappointing savoury pastry, that's all. Those twin pedestals on which this nation stands.

"Although while we're on the subject, how can the staff at this garage claim they 'don't have a toilet'? Presumably they shit in some bushes, like badgers."


Odd Footie Injuries

Rio Ferdinand - During his spell at Leeds, the England defender strained his tendon after he put his foot up on a coffee table for a number of hours.
Jerome Boateng - The Germany defender's debut for Manchester City was delayed after he aggravated a knee problem when he collided with a trolley on an aeroplane. 'I imagined my start at City to be quite different, of course,' he said.
Ever Banega - The Valencia midfielder was run over by his own car and broke his ankle after he failed to properly apply the handbrake when he stopped at a petrol station to fill up his car.
David James - He tweaked his shoulder when trying to land a very large carp.
Richard Wright - The goalkeeper damaged his shoulder falling through a loft as he was trying to pack away his suitcases.
Svein Grondalen - The Norway defender collided with a moose while out jogging, which forced him to withdraw from a game.
Dave Beasant - The veteran goalkeeper was embarrassingly ruled out for eight weeks when he dropped a bottle of salad cream on his foot and cut a tendon.
Alex Stepney - In 1975 the Manchester United keeper dislocated his jaw while barking orders at his defenders.
Steve Morrow - The former Northern Ireland defender broke his collarbone after falling off the shoulders of Tony Adams while celebrating the 1993 League Cup final win against Sheffield Wednesday.
Darren Barnard - The ex Barnsley midfielder slipped in a puddle of his puppy's urine and tore a knee ligament, ruling him out for five months.
Charlie George - The Arsenal man severed off his finger with a lawnmower.
Kirk Broadfoot - The Rangers defender suffered burns after an egg he had poached exploded in his face while he was inspecting it.

Turd Reich?

Adolf Hitler toilet paper
A German chap has introduced a new style of bog roll, called "Draw Your Own Shitler" where the depicts the Fuhrer's face without his trademark moustache, instead leaving a gap for the customer to "add a brown one" of their own.

He's taken some flak over the idea but on the whole, he has been getting a considerable amount of interest, both at home and abroad.  He said:

"I'm just really pleased that my idea was so popular but I wish some people who are attacking me would loosen up a bit.  My toilet paper is not just practical, it is making a point with humour.  Which moustache-wearing man in history would deserve this treatment more than Hitler?"

At £3 a roll, he must be onto something...


"Oddest" Book Title of the Year

Cooking With Poo  
We blogged this "competition" a while back and the winner has now been announced.  The trouble is, why is this title odd?  As they say, poo is crab in Thai and it's the lady's nickname, so just because Westerners relate the word to taking a dump it's meant to be witty/funny/odd?  How peculiar.

What next?  "Die Fahrt" wins because the German word for trip/journey sounds like the Brit word for blowing off?  Side splitting...  It's all a bit pathetic, don't you think?

A Thai cookbook has won this year's Diagram Prize for oddest book title of the year.
Cooking With Poo is written by Bangkok chef Saiyuud Diwong whose nickname is Poo- which is Thai for "crab".  She runs a cookery school for locals and tourists in the city's largest slum, alongside the charitable organisation that published the book.

The 114 page book beat six other titles to be voted the winner in a public vote on The Bookseller's website.

Voted in second was Mr Andoh's Pennine Diary: Memoirs of a Japanese Chicken Sexer in 1935 Hebden Bridge by Stephen Curry and Takayoshi Andoh.
While Scott D Mendelson's The Great Singapore Penis Panic and the Future of American Mass Hysteria came in third.

The other shorlisted titles were Estonian Sock Patterns All Around the World, The Mushroom in Christian Art, A Taxonomy of Office Chairs and A Century of Sand Dredging in the Bristol Channel: Volume Two.

Last year's winner was former dentist Michael Young's Managing a Dental Practice the Genghis Khan Way.

Blah, Blah, Blah

Arsehole Whinger has been banned for three matches and fined 40 000€ (~£33 000) for his conduct in Arsenal's Champions League defeat by AC Milan.  He has now received three Uefa bans in the space of a year, yet said:

"It's not justified and I will straight away appeal.  I believe that they have transformed Uefa competition referees to be untouchable icons, where you cannot even have a word.  The only thing they understand after the game is the report.

I believe that when you have 25 years consecutively in Europe you can still ask the referee that you can have some discussion with him. It is very difficult to understand." 

No doubting his track record, all right.  Three times in a year and still he bleats on?  Ban him outright next time.


How Weed Works

It Does Exist, Honest

The word "gullible" is the most frequently looked-up word at  According to the FAQ, the web site owners suspect that it is largely the result of people being duped with the classic "did you know that 'gullible' isn't really a word?" gag.

Waste of Time

With Sepptic Splatter still at the helm, nowt will make a difference.  In my opinion, he is completely untrustworthy and self-serving.

Fifa's president Sepp Blatter described it as a historic day. But amid all the talk of progress and reform, this was also a reminder of the dark days Fifa has recently had to endure.

The report by Professor Mark Pieth's Independent Governance Committee will have made some grim reading for Blatter and those executives who have presided over a series of damaging corruption scandals.

"Insufficient", "unconvincing" and "unsatisfactory" was how Prof Pieth's report viewed Fifa's handling of past allegations of misconduct, particularly those involving Blatter's re-election as president and the votes for the 2018 and 2022 World Cups.

In its 20 page report the IGC sets out how Fifa might start to rebuild trust, starting with a new independent ethics committee with two chambers - one to invstigate claims and another to adjudicate.

Blatter's commitment to change is set to be tested by Pieth's report. Photo: Getty

Crucially this body would have the powers to delve into the past - reopening the prospect of another more thorough examination of claims of wrongdoing during the 2018 and 2022 World Cup bidding contests.

Blatter was brief and to the point when asked in this afternoon's press conference whether that was now more likely, saying it would be possible to initiate investigations on the basis of credible evidence. The question now is who judges that evidence to be credible. If that person is truly independent then today's report has potentially planted a ticking time bomb under Fifa.

Revisiting the 2018 and 2022 World Cup decisions will create so many problems for Fifa that it remains difficult to see how it will ever happen. But if Fifa is to restore its reputation then it may be the grand gesture it needs to make.

Based on the documents they were shown and their conversations with senior figures on the previous ethics committee, including the chairman Claudio Sulser, Pieth and the IGC felt there was a lack of pro-active follow-up on allegations. Pieth's report adds that part of
the problem lies in the requirement for complainants to back up claims with evidence rather than the ethics committee undertaking to evaluate the allegations for themselves.

Having won the support of the executive committee, the recommendations must now be approved by the Fifa congress in Budapest at the end of May.

Today was an important step on Blatter's road map to reform. But the sport's ruling body still has a very long way to travel.


Today's Fixtures

Square Eyes

The United States is the only country in the world where watching television consumes more time than employment.

I'm not so sure that's factual any more.  I'll bet the UK is fast closing in on that unwanted claim.



J & J asked us what it stood for and we didn't have a clue.  The best guess we could offer was "wireless fidelity" but we weren't sure.  Now, with the power of Google I can answer:  it does indeed stand for wireless fidelity (as in hi-fi; high fidelity) according to two sources.

Source 1 & Source 2

However, on closer investigation, apparently it doesn't "stand" for anything.  According to this article from BoingBoing:
“Wi-Fi doesn’t stand for anything.
It is not an acronym. There is no meaning.
Wi-Fi and the ying yang style logo were invented by Interbrand. [The founding members of the Wireless Ethernet Compatibility Alliance, now called the Wi-Fi Alliance] hired Interbrand to come up with the name and logo that [they] could use for [their] interoperability seal and marketing efforts. [They] needed something that was a little catchier than “IEEE 802.11b Direct Sequence”.”
According to, some of the losing names that Interbrand suggested were Skybridge, Torchlight, Flyover, Transpeed and Elevate.

However, as per sixteenthletter, maybe it does stand for wireless fidelity after all:

UPDATE: Thanks to an awesome comment by a reader (Thanks MixtLupus – check out his blog here), it turns out that Wi-Fi does indeed stand for Wireless Fidelity. I couldn’t access the knowledge base (anyone who can and sends me a screenshot, I will be indebted!) but here is the small piece that I could see.


I'll leave it up to the guys to decide...

'Pooter Glitch

It seems our wi-fi signal has finally settled down and we are getting a steady connection.  Now we seem to be having gremlins in our laptop.  The Vaio was more than sluggish and only typing every third word and I also noticed the battery wasn't charging.  Despite a re-boot which only cured the lag, the battery meter still stated "plugged in and not charging", which is obviously a concern.

In the end I disconnected the power at both ends, gave it a few minutes and linked the power pack up again.  All seems well and we're once again charging as we should.  However, the laptop is now well over three years old and takes a fair old hammering, so maybe we need to check out some new possibilities?  t won't do any harm to window shop...

Good Sexercise

Sexercise Infographics


"Anarchy - it's not the law, it's just a good idea."
- Unknown

Hangover Two

J & J left this DVD with us and while the first filum was barely average, this was surprisingly better.  Mainly because it was shot in Thailand/Bangkok.  What was good to see was that we barely recognised any parts of Bangkok portrayed, which means that we still have plenty left to see.

I'm almost proud of the fact that we haven't even been to the infamous Khao San Road or Soi Cowboy, come to that.  As we say, leave something for the next time.

But the movie?  Yeah, we laughed and as a freebie, who are we to complain.

Safe Landing?

Not heard anything to the contrary, so we can only assume both J & J landed back safely and are in the process of un-jet-lagging.  Guys, it was, as ever, a scream and we are already missing you.  Well, my kidneys aren't but given time, they will too I'm sure.

Friday, 30 March 2012

C & H

Calvin and Hobbes

Cor Blimey, Guv'nor

Modern Londoners are just as baffled by Cockney rhyming slang as the rest of the country.  A recent study found the world famous East End lingo which has been mimicked and mocked for decades is on the wane.

80% of Londoners do not understand phrases such as "donkey’s ears" (years), "Mother Hubbard" (cupboard) and "bacon and eggs" which means legs.  Other  baffling phrases included:
  • rabbit and pork- talk
  • Tommy Tucker- supper
  • watch the custard and jelly- telly
  • teapot lids- kids
However, some terms were still commonly used such as:
  • porky pies- lies
  • cream crackered- knackered
  • tea leaf- thief)
  • apples and pears- stairs
The term "cokenay" was used in The Reeve’s Tale, the third story in Geoffrey Chaucer’s The Canterbury Tales, to describe a child who was “tenderly brought up” and “effeminate”.  By the early 16th century the reference was commonly used as a derogatory term to describe town-dwellers.  Later still, it was used to indicate those born specifically within earshot of the ringing of Bow-bell at St Mary-le-Bow church in east London.


Yours to Hire

Hertz puts McLaren MP4-12C up for hire

British travellers have been offered the chance to hire the £212 000 McLaren MP4-12C by Hertz, the car rental company.  The price tag is likely to hinder all but the most affluent travellers, however.  One day’s rental starts at £1 134.30, although this drops to a slightly more modest £906.30 for rentals lasting more than 28 days.

The car has a 3.8-litre V8 twin-turbo engine, which produces 592 bhp and it has a top speed of more than 200 mph.  It can accelerate from 0 to 60 mph in 2.8 seconds and from 0 to 124 mph in 8.9 seconds.

However, anyone considering a trip to the German autobahns, to put the car through its paces, will be sorely disappointed- according to the terms and conditions, drivers are not permitted to take the car abroad.

Make 'em Pay

More than five times as many Dibble are working on the phone hacking investigation than those tracking down paedophiles in London, the Leveson Inquiry has been told and more money is likely to be spent on Operation Weeting than the annual budget for investigating child abuse in the capital.  Further more, enough Rozzers to man eight murder squads are expected to be focused on the hacking inquiry by next year.

Sad to think that the rich and famous get higher priority when being hassled by a scummy "paper" and defenceless kids are almost ignored.

How about making NotW pay for this?  It's their responsibility, after all.


Snow Back in Britain for Easter

After what has been the third warmest March on record, poor weather will arrive on Monday bringing possible sleet or snow in the north, forecasters said.  Temperatures next month could reach 14 C in London, but may be as low as 8 C in Scotland with icy conditions in the mountains.

It comes after much of the UK sweltered* in temperatures of above 20 C this week, compared to average March temperatures of 9 C.

Erm sweltered*?  At 20 C?  What's the matter with journalists?  20 C is barely lukewarm...

They Didn't Get Away

1. Largest Lobster Ever Caught- Maine

Largest Lobster Ever Caught- Maine
The 27-Pound lobster was caught off the coast of Maine and is about the size of a 3-year-old toddler.

2. Largest Catfish Ever Caught- Thailand

Largest Catfish Ever Caught- Thailand
The largest catfish ever caught on record measures just over 9 feet. After being caught, Thai villagers tried to keep it alive but despite great efforts, it sadly passed away.

3. The Largest Stingray Ever Caught - Thailand

The Largest Stingray Ever Caught - Thailand
This gigantic freshwater Stingray weighed in at over 564 pounds and took 90 minutes to wrangle out of the water.

4. Largest Salmon Ever Caught - California

Largest Salmon Ever Caught - California
During a standard fall salmon survey, DFG biologists happened upon the king of all salmon. This beast was 51 inches long and weighed over 88 pounds. Normally, salmon weigh between 20 and 30 pounds.

5. Largest Squid Ever Caught- Arctic Ocean

Largest Squid Ever Caught- Arctic Ocean
The squid, which was captured in Arctic ocean, weighed about 1,089 pounds and was over 6 meters long. The previous "largest squid in the world" was captured in New Zealand and weighed 992 pounds.

6. Largest Marlin Ever Caught- Hawaii

Largest Marlin Ever Caught- Hawaii
Feast your eyes on this fish. Captured in Kona, Hawaii in 1984, this Pacific Blue Marlin weighed 1,656 pounds and was 17 feet long.. And as you can probably imagine, this puppy took about 2 hours to be reeled in.

7. Largest Sea Bass Ever Caught- California

Largest Sea Bass Ever Caught- California
What's 400-pounds and takes over an hour to get out of the water? The biggest Black Sea Bass ever caught!

8. Largest King Crab Ever Caught- Northern Pacific Ocean

Largest King Crab Ever Caught- Northern Pacific Ocean
Meet the largest crab ever caught. Weighing in around 33 pounds, this meaty beast could easily keep a family of 5 full for a week.

9. Largest Shark Ever Caught - Mediterranean

Largest Shark Ever Caught - Mediterranean
Reports surfaced of a 23 foot long whale shark caught in the Mediterranean, but the actual length was 21 feet. Still, not TOO shabby.

10. Largest Alligator Gar Ever Caught - Texas

Largest Alligator Gar Ever Caught - Texas
Just imagine trying to reel in this terrifying fish. The world's largest Alligator Gar was caught in Texas, measured 8’3” and weighed 230 pounds!

Buzz Feed

Handpresso Auto

275x250.jpg A coffee machine which lets caffeine-addict drivers make an espresso from the comfort of their car has gone on sale.  The Handpresso Auto is powered by a car's cigarette lighter and takes just two minutes to prepare a high-quality espresso coffee.  Users simply fill the device with water, insert a coffee pod and plug it in. 
The £125 device then heats the water and after reaching 16 bars of pressure beeps and pours your coffee.

Just why?  I'm sure Plod will be having words about driving without due care and attention too.

Watch this Space

GOVERNMENT warnings of a fuel shortage have proved to be uncannily accurate.

Does Francis Maude have a secret time machine? Or is he just a wizard?
Within hours of Francis Maude telling everyone to put a gun turret on their garage, petrol stations reported long queues of terrified people offering their children in exchange for a fill-up.

Mr Maude said: "I got a right load of shit from everyone yesterday but it turns out I was absolutely spot on.

"But will they apologise? Will they fuck."

The cabinet office minister admitted his fuel shortage prediction was based on an educated guess, but denied strongly that it was a fluke.

He added: "Watch this.

"I think there's going to be a milk shortage."
Mr Maude was then forced to dive out of the way as four million people stampeded towards the nearest Asda, stripping it of milk as if it was a goat in a piranha tank.

As the dust settled, Mr Maude continued: "It's weird isn't it? It's like I'm totally in the 'zone'.

"Let's try it with pasties."


Big News

BRITAIN was celebrating yesterday after discovering something it actually gives a toss about.

It later emerged that the pasty has never met Mr Cameron and does not play football
Despite NHS reform, rising unemployment and The Voice-BGT schism, the nation's anger has finally congealed over the price of hoof-filled pastry parcels.

As the Cornish Defence League threatened to firebomb Greggs and millions of people fretted over their next portion of minced roadkill badger, David Cameron, the prime minister of the United Kingdom, stood in a public street and declared that some of his best friends were pasties.

He said: "We play football together on Thursday nights and then we go for a beer and talk about the Big Society."

Chancellor George Osborne also confirmed his love of the kind of food that is destroying the National Health Service by forcing eight jumbo sasuage rolls into his mouth at the same time, even though it was perfectly obvious that he was crying.

And Labour leader Ed Miliband continued his 12-step weirdness-reduction programme by taking his massive, googly eyes to a Greggs in Redditch where staff immediately threw the contents of the bin at Ed Balls in a determined effort to kill him.

Mr Miliband then attempted to shake hands with a cheese and onion slice.

Meanwhile, the government has produced a public information film, to be shown before and after prole-heavy TV shows, featuring lingering shots of a steak bake as Patrick Stewart delivers a series of explicit threats about what will happen to it if you keep complaining.


Google + Games

New feature from Google +, games.  Here are a few you can while away some time at work on:

Americans and Beer

You probably know a thing or two about drinking beer. For instance, you know that you should abide by house rules when playing Beer Pong. Or that when an English guy threatens to “glass you” in a pub, that means he’s a violent psychopath, and you should run like hell. But just because you drink a lot of beer doesn’t mean that you know a lot about beer itself. To help change that, we spoke with Dave Forrest, head brewer and owner of CraftHaus Brewery in Las Vegas, and author of Tasting Beer: An Insider’s Guide to the World’s Greatest Drink. Here’s what he taught us:

1. The Great American Lager Is Only Mostly American
Turns out it’s no coincidence that Budweiser, the self-proclaimed King of Beers, is a royalist. Anheuser-Busch is actually owned by a foreign multinational company that’s headquartered in Belgium, which is practically France.

2. There’s A Right Way To Pour Beer
Before you get to the pour, you should choose the right beer glass to help accentuate the flavors and aroma of your beer. For example, a Belgian ale — aw, not the Belgians again! — is best served in a tulip-style glass. Darker, barrel-aged beers work best in goblet-style glasses. Of course, we’re limited by what’s available, so the only hard-and-fast rule is to make sure whatever glass you use is free from dishwasher detergent film. Nothing kills a fine head of beer faster than that stuff.
Three steps for the perfect pour:
1. Hold your glass at a 45-degree angle.
2. Let the beer hit the side of the glass.
3. When the glass is 2/3 full, tip the glass upright and finish the pour.

3. Beer Is Actually Food
Beer is derived from grains and is sometimes referred to as “Liquid bread.” In fact, centuries ago monks even used brewed beers to get through fasts during Lent. Bock, a rich and malty beer originally brewed in the German town of Einbeck, is thought to be the original “liquid bread.”

4. Don’t Frost Your Beer Glasses
Unless you’re drinking a simple Pilsner or some of the lesser lagers (like Natty Light), that frosty mug will just kill the flavors and fragrance of your brew.

5. You Can Pair Beer With Food Just Like Wine
Beer goes with more food than pizza or chicken wings. Try pairing a malty brown ale with a spicy Thai dish, or a Scotch Ale with a Mexican dish. If you’re eating a strong cheese, you should go with a really hoppy beer, like Stone IPA. Or pair dark chocolate with a dark, barrel-aged beer such as a World Wide Stout from Dogfish Head Brewery.

6. There Are 23 Styles of Beer
Lagers and ales are made using different fermentation processes. Within each category there are wide ranges of strengths, colors, and flavors. There are 23 nationally recognized beer styles, including lagers, ales, bocks, stouts, and porters, but there are many other styles that don’t fit into any category. In fact “Category 23” is for specialty beers that don’t fit anywhere else, and there’s a lot of that going around since craft brewers are experimenting with every kind of ingredient. Porter with espresso? A pale ale with rosemary? Category 23.

7. Craft Beers Are Everywhere
There are roughly 1,600 operational craft breweries in the United States — up from just eight in 1980 and 537 in 1994 — and many of them are small, independent brewers who are waiting for their brews to be discovered. Go to and type in your state, and it’ll generate a list of a statewide breweries complete with website and contact information.

8. Beers Are Seasonal
All the great styles of beer come from that region’s seasonal harvest, but there are definite seasonal favorites. A good so-called “winter warmer” beer might be something darker, with more spices, like Snow Day, a winter ale from the New Belgium Brewery. (Gah, Belgium!) During the summer you might go with a Wit or a Hefeweizen (wheat beer), both of which are generally lighter and more refreshing. And please don’t put an orange into your witbier (Hoegaarden White, Allagash White, Sam Adams White). Even though Blue Moon does it, a real witbier is already brewed using orange peels. Anything extra is overkill.

Modern Man

Back to the Traffic

This is the scene outside of our hotel in Sukhumvit showing the almost gridlocked traffic.  It was so bad that the pink bus had parked up in the centre of the road and the driver just left it there.  Even funnier, as we took this picture, there were still a couple of passengers on board- fast asleep.

I popped out to Tesco-Lotus a short while ago and saw the bus being started up and then driving away, having been dumped all night.  :o)

Birds of a Feather

Disregarding its litter-mates, puppies are 80% more likely to socialise with a pooch of a differing breed, than a puppy of the same breed.

Life at 33

It’s true: 30 really is the new 20. A study by Friends Reunited, a British social networking site, found that 70% of respondents over the age of 40 claimed they were not truly happy until they reached 33.

“The age of 33 is enough time to have shaken off childhood naivete and the wild scheming of teenaged years without losing the energy and enthusiasm of youth,” psychologist Donna Dawson said in the survey’s findings. “By this age innocence has been lost, but our sense of reality is mixed with a strong sense of hope, a ‘can do’ spirit, and a healthy belief in our own talents and abilities.”

Conversely, only 16% of the survey’s respondents pined for their childhood, while 6% said they were happiest while in college.

Many respondents claimed that their happiness at 33 came from fulfillment in their professional lives, as well as having a support system of family and friends. Not surprisingly, 36% said they were happiest when they had children.

Additionally, more than half of survey-takers who chose 33 as the magic number said that they did so because life at that age was more fun — probably because they had more money to enjoy it.

Oh, Yes!

Use this easy step by step instruction on putting the parts together to build your own lightsaber unit. It requires no soldering, gluing or anything other than the following parts and everything is in the plumbing area of Home Depot: Pop-up Basin Drain (1), Drain extension tube with threads and slip nut (1), Slip nut and washer (1), 1 1/4" Disposal gasket (6), 1 1/4" Slip joint washer (6), Faucet hole cover (1).

Step 1Lightsaber Head - Blade length adjustment ring

Lightsaber Head - Blade length adjustment ring
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Put aside the drain cap, rods and brackets on the Pop-up basin drain. You can use them for other projects, but you don???t need them here. Slide the washer from the slip nut and washer set onto the pop-up basin drain until it is against the ball valve.

Step 2Butt and Handle

Butt and Handle
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Unscrew the slip nut from the extension tube, remove and put aside the “wing nut” on the faucet hole cover and insert the faucet hole cover into the threaded end of the extension tube. Replace and tighten the slip nut. You may have to put the faucet hole cover into the slip nut first and then fit it onto the extension tube to make it easier.

Step 3Preparing Head for Connection to Handle

Preparing Head for Connection to Handle
Slide two slip joint washers over pop-up basin drain on the long end.and put them about 1-2 inches apart.

Step 4Adding the grip on the handle

Adding the grip on the handle
Alternating, slide a disposal gasket over the non-threaded end of the extension tube, then slide a slip joint washer. Repeat this 5 more times. You can very this depending on how much of a grip you want relative to the grooves in the grip. You may need more (more of a black fully covered grip) or less (more chrome showing through if you space them apart.)

Step 5Connect Handle and Head

Connect Handle and Head
This is the hardest part. Slide the pop-up basin drain into the extension tube. You’ll need to feed the slip joint washers into the tube because the fit will be tight. After you get the first one in, press down until the next one is lined up and get that fed in. Be careful to work it so the two tubes aren't crooked to each other. Then get over the thing and push…agin be careful, before you push, to make sure all the rubber is inside the tube or the hilt will be crooked. I found that if I worked the last little bit of the second gasket on the opposite side of that which I worked the last part of the first gasket, it ensured a straight line up of the two tubes. Also, if you are using the plastic pop-up drain, be careful not to break it. I was able to put a fair amount of pressure on it though.

Step 6Optional items

Optional items
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Insert something red into the ball value on the pop-up basin drain and replace the nut as a button, just use the nut as the on/off button or remove it altogether.

Instead of the disposal gaskets, you could wrap the hilt with leather or cord to give it a multi-medium kind of feel. Or just leave it plain chrome.

Also, as pictured, if you have a spare hard drive or CD ROM drive lying around, you can take out the spindle hub and use it as the emitter on the business end of the sabre.

Step 7The Battle

The Battle

Unknown to me, my kids had some Adegan/Ilum crystals and inserted them into the blade matrix when I wasn't looking. I was able to snap this image before breaking it up. It's all fun and games until someone loses an arm. (please note: the blades in this image are photoshopped. technology hasn't come that far.)