This week we have seen Blockbusters in the news as the latest retailer to go into administration, following other famous names like HMV, Jessops and Comet. Then there was Tesco with it 30% horse-meat ‘beef’ burgers. Then there was the snow…
If you’re following my blogs about writing a novel, you will know that the story I’m writing is about Nick and Lily. Nick’s parents were killed in a car accident while on holiday in America. He took to the road in a campervan and met Lily, a brash American. They are opposites but attracted to one another and so have a love-hate relationship.
I took this photo in May, doesn’t time fly when you’re having fun? At the time of writing I can see blue sky and sunshine, we didn’t see much of that through the summer and now Autumn is flying by. It will soon be Christmas and we have to prepare, save up for some stamps to post our Christmas cards!
For weeks now I’ve been developing my story about Nick, who has lost his parents in a car accident in California. He decided to sell up and go on a road trip around the English Countryside. I’m getting a little inspiration from the photographs that I took on Sunday. This is as close to the English Countryside that I get!
Regular readers know that on a Sunday, I write about anything I feel like writing about and tend to just ramble on. This week the government has announced it will lend money to banks, so they can lend it to us. The interest rate the government is charging is less than 1%. It’s working, I had a letter from Barclay’s offering me a balance transfer for a fee of 2.9%. That’s a nice little earner; nice to see the greed culture at Barclay’s hasn’t left the building, along with Banker Bob. (more…)
For the benefit of local readers, yes the picture is junction 9 of the M6 motorway. It was taken when there was a break in the rain! The traffic light were on red as usual. It is important when I write a blog to start it with something interesting, try to tease the reader to click the link to read the rest of the page. Are you teased enough yet? Maybe, I should mention sex? I mentioned testosterone in my blog on a Zillion Ideas today. That’s a sex hormone! That blog is about how our emotions affect our hormones and vice versa. (more…)
The London Season
It’s all go in London, after the excitement of the Queen’s official birthday. People turned out to watch the trooping of the colour and waved their flags and took up the customary grovelling positions. Some of them were hoping that, if they sucked up enough, they would get a gong in the birthday honours list. We have a season here in the Black Country. Last night the London set, went to the Hampton Court Palace Festival to partake in champagne and canapés, be entertained by the likes of Jools Holland and end the evening with a really, really expensive firework display. Up Tipton there was bingo and karaoke. The Tipton set celebrated with Banks mild and prawn cocktail crisps. Entertainment was by an Elvis lookalike from Prince’s End. (more…)
Happy birthday to me…
Yes, it’s my birthday yet again. My mate Richard; in Sydney, Australia posted a picture of a teddy bear and a birthday cake on Facebook earlier (my birthday started early in Oz). That took me back to when I was a kid, playing doctors and nurses with teddy and the girl down the road; she was the doctor. I’ll never forget what she did to teddy with that three feet of plastic tubing; no wonder his eye fell out. (more…)
My mate has just come out of the hospital; he had both legs amputated. I popped round to help him out; just until he gets back on his feet. I said, “Bill, I’m goin’ to the supermarket, do you need anything?”
He said, ” Ar, bring me a couple of chicken legs.”
I said, “C’mon Bill, you’re clutchin’ at straws now…”
These were the top ten clichés used by members of LinkedIn on their profiles:
- Extensive experience
- Proven track record
- Team player
- Problem solver
It’s Daylight Robbery!
Tuesday, 08 March 2011
It’s Daylight Robbery!
You have heard the term ‘it’s daylight robbery’ but where does it come from? I will explain! You may remember the dreamless ones are stupid because they are genetically descended from Neanderthals and they keep altering the clocks trying to save ‘daylight’. Anyway, way back in 1696 the King of England introduced a window tax. This was a very fair tax. (more…)
I came across this quote today and thought it was worth posting:
We have pretty much exhausted the British Medical Association’s response to the Government’s health programme, save to add that:
* The radiologists saw right through it
Cabbages and Cameras
Value Added Tax went up in the UK this week and my friend was going to buy a camera before the tax went up. A lot of financial journalists were advising buying before the price went up; were they right? No, they are the dreamless ones. Think like a businessman and not a journalist. You own a camera shop and you’re in competition with the local supermarket that also sells digital cameras. You buy in compact cameras wholesale and pay wholesale price plus VAT (input tax) and then you add your profit (adding value) then you add VAT and display the cameras at £99.99. It’s January; you had a bad December because of the snow and the supermarket is cutting prices. You could put the price of the cameras up to £102.99 or leave them at £99.99 and make a smaller profit. The supermarket can afford to make a smaller profit and weather the snow! You could try to sell more cameras and even cut the price. I checked the prices of lots of consumer goods; retailers are leaving prices as they are or where the product is about to be replaced; cutting prices and even cutting out their profit margin to get rid of old stock. You would probably decide to leave the price at £99.99 and would probably be at the mercy of the weather; you would sell more if people came out to shop and less if it snowed again.
You decide after a week of trading to go to the supermarket and decide to fill the car up with petrol; the price of petrol has gone up from £1.10 to £1.25; how do they work that out? The VAT increase was added this week and the duty went up too. You just got screwed by the dreamless ones in government; twice. You are doing the shopping and the price of cabbages has gone from 79p to 99p; that can’t be right! They were affected by the weather; it’s been snowing. Then they cost more to transport to the supermarket and the cost of petrol and diesel has gone up with the duty and VAT increase. This can’t be right, there is no VAT on cabbages; they are food, the VAT increase is on luxury goods like cameras!
This tax increase was introduced by the Oxbridge educated dreamless ones; it appears to be a tax on luxuries but is really a tax on the poor; sick, elderly and disabled. The Oxbridge ‘Old boys’ network is an exclusive ‘tribe’; you are not a member.
When I think of ‘tribes’; I think of native American Indians, but there are lots of ‘tribes’. They aren’t always obvious and the ‘old boys’ of Oxbridge have control of government in the UK. The President of the United States went to Harvard and so is a member of a very different elite tribe; but still a ‘tribe’. He is not just a member of that ‘tribe’ however but several and the Democratic Party itself is a ‘tribe’. Another member of the Harvard ‘tribe‘ is the CEO of Goldman Sachs; Lloyd Craig Blankfein. As head of Goldman Sachs he has recently asked members of his ‘tribe’ to invest a minimum of $3,000,000 in Facebook. Facebook was founded by Mark Zuckerberg, he too is a member of the Harvard ‘tribe’. Peter Andreas Thiel; co-founded PayPal and is a member of the same ‘tribe’ and an early investor in Facebook; an investment that is now worth over $1 billion. No; he didn’t go to Harvard; he went to Stanford. Oxford or Cambridge, it makes no difference; same ‘tribe’. They went to Harvard, Stanford or Yale; all the same ‘tribe’. I have made some connections; now where does this guy in Russia fit in who is investing in Goldman Sachs?
‘Tribes’ are based on common interests and that interest usually involves money and power. It can also involve sexuality; it can pay to be gay or religious. Become a Catholic like Tony Blair did or join the Society of Jesus; you may have to go through some training and initiation though. Members of Opus Dei; apparently do all kinds of weird things like beating themselves; but it’s better than the initiation for becoming gay; I think. Then of course there are the Freemasons and the Grand Order of Buffalos.
Then you have ‘secret societies’. Yale university has lots; three just for ‘seniors’. There is the ‘skull and bones’, ‘scroll and key’ and ‘wolf’s head’; these are societies where students sit around reading poetry and planning the takeover of the world.
Today’s subject in case you missed it was the influence of the dreamless ones and their ‘tribes’.
Peter Thiel is actually on the board of Facebook; regulators are looking at the Goldman Sachs investment.
Sunday, 02 January 2011
My Frugal car – 13 years old and still going and still looks good…
It’s a New Year and so I have been doing precognitions.
So far I have predicted an earthquake on the San Andreas Fault; probably out to sea and so there will be a tsunami; I’m OK, I don’t intend going on any beaches in 2011; I would only come back with shell shock! J I predicted an air disaster; that wasn’t too clear. It’s was a big plane with a big logo in red and blue; I think maybe after the solstice in June. My best predication was a major problem in Korea that eventually sorts itself out with the re-unification of North and South Korea. There was minor stuff like an increase in the Bank of England interest rate and a subsequent increase in the value of the pound sterling; that will lead to overseas investors investing in the UK. I would take a serious look at the AIM (Alternative Investments Market) on the LSE (London Stock Exchange). It will be a better investment than Wall Street; the S&P won’t do so good and QE2 will be a fail!
I wrote some frugal tips for 2011, above all resist brainwashing by the media. I buy 3 packs of chicken for £10 instead of one for 1 for £4 and that is a BIG saving! I bought a winter sweater in August and got a £10 reduction from £30 – that is a 33.3333333333333333% savings; actually more than that! I bought a half price jet washer on the same day… An English saying is watch the pennies and the pounds look after themselves… I watch the pounds too…
My other tips included swapping DVD’s, watching free TV; subscriptions are a waste of money. Swap anything, go back to the days before money and barter; even use IOU’s. That was how money began, with an IOU a small pig or a bucket of milk… then they put a name to it and the groat was born! I found a quote I wrote earlier, thank God for copy and paste:
Being frugal is just habit; cut alcohol or at least cut down. Think, before you buy food; taking sandwiches or even something hot in a flask is cheaper than eating out. Stop smoking, if you haven’t already; that will save a fortune. Drive carefully and frugally, don’t make unnecessary journeys. Never go to the supermarket on a Sunday – that’s when I go! Don’t borrow, save and invest. Always look for offers and make good use of your store cupboards and the freezer to buy in bulk.
I’m having my wallet surgically removed from my pocket tomorrow so I can buy a few things before the VAT goes up; every small saving helps. Who is buying a barbecue this weather? I am; they are on special offer; I bought a winter sweater last summer.
I will try to add a picture to this blog; I found it difficult on WordPress but think I know have the idea. I’ll try to do a frugal Friday photograph and what could be more deliciously frugal than egg and chips! I added salad and salad cream, awesome and delicious…
Please comment and ask questions if you want; I can even do your Chinese horoscope if I have your date of birth, place of birth and current location…
If you are new to my blogs, research has shown that stupid people dream less, if at all; they are the dreamless ones…
A lesson in leadership
You are CEO of a large company or organisation and you have severe problems. How do you lead the organisation out of difficulty?
1.Give all the executives and managers a pay rise.
2.Cut back and make workers redundant.
3.Talk to all staff; ask (nicely) for efficiency, a pay freeze and extra unpaid work.
The US government has just given all executives in the economy a pay rise by way of tax cuts. The British government is cutting back just like the Canadian government. The question is where did the leaders learn how to lead so badly? It was of course in the top universities where they have no leadership.
When a little maths can be useful
Many years ago in England, mathematicians from Britain and America worked together to try to crack the code used by the German’s Enigma machine. They did it eventually by using a computer designed by a lowly telephone exchange technician. They called the computers Colossus; this was smart thinking. After the war the prime minister ordered the computers to be destroyed; this wasn’t smart thinking. Britain could have led the world into the computer age with the Colossus computers, but Churchill decided against it. He also decided against bombing German synthetic oil terminals to end the war; he thought bombing Berlin and killing innocent people was a better option. Politicians have always been dreamless…
We still needed to crack encryption codes and that job went to GCHQ, a top secret facility where mathematicians worked to crack new codes. One mathematician got a job there and the work was explained to him on his first day. He was living as a lodger at a nearby house. That evening he thought about the codes and wrote down a formula that was something like this:
A = 8 mod 3
The answer to that equation is 2, mod returns the remainder. So divide 8 by 2 and the remainder is 2. Now imagine really big numbers the size of numbers that a computer like Colossus could handle; numbers higher than a million. The password to a computer is just a number, it may appear to be numbers and letters; but every key we press on a keyboard sends a number to the processor. If we send a number that is a key (a password) and the recipient has the other key; then we can combine the two keys with this formula to give a remainder and the answer can be the same every time. The key we send can be different every time though! If the key in Nova Scotia is 3 and we send 8 then the remainder is 2. We could send 14 and the computer would divide 14 by 3 and the remainder is still 2! These are small numbers, in practice huge numbers are used; higher than a trillion.
We needed computers though; sod, some dreamless one scrapped them! The system was used successfully to send information to British Embassies around the world for 30 years and by some small miracle it was kept secret! We didn’t tell the dreamless ones how it worked! We didn’t even tell our friends on the other side of the pond how it worked. Unfortunately, a couple of kids came up with the same system in United States and that system is used for secure computer communication even now. You may see a padlock on your screen when doing internet banking for example. The question you should ask is with such a powerful encryption code at the disposal of the US government how did all that ‘top secret’ information get into the hands of Wikileaks? Did they really hack computers or did someone purposely give them the information to expose dreamlessness in government?
The most annoying word of 2010
The most annoying word of 2010 was; whatever. I think the most annoying word of 2011 will probably be dreamless I don’t really care; whatever…
Webby on the radio
My friend who wrote Jake West: The Keeper of the Stones is being interviewed on BBC radio on Wednesday. I like the presenter who is interviewing him too; I didn’t even know she had defected to the BBC. I have a radio on my MP3 player, I think I could do a recording; it would be cool to put that on his website. I put a Merry Christmas graphic on yesterday and a video of Slade singing ‘Merry Christmas everybody’. Slade is a local band from Wolverhampton or they were in the 1970’s. I saw them practice at a local disused school where all the bands practised in those days. I used to get asked to manage bands in those days!
I saw an eBook on a website for sale ‘Farmville secrets’, it was out of date and lots of people are trying to sell it because the affiliates make $20 or something. It helps you get past level thirty and up to the highest level 70. I’m on level 101 and my friends are on even higher levels. Farmville keeps changing and so a book isn’t a great idea; maybe a blog? I may do an update of my Farmville secrets as soon as I get a bull. You put a bull in with your cows before milking and they produce more milk apparently; I know you can’t make this stuff up. You need a gingerbread house on you farm now and there are snowballs fights. I’m about to get a gold award and bonus for doing a co-op in just over 3 days. There is a WordPress theme that looks very much like a Facebook page; even the comments look like the comments on Facebook. There are so many scams associated with Facebook and Farmville in particular.
Yes, it’s snowing again. I cooked homemade soup yesterday and it was delicious; but the photographs weren’t so good. I want those photographs for a website. The trick to getting a good colour is to add washed onion skins to your stock pot when making the chicken stock. That gives the stock a nice golden colour; but I wasn’t using onions!
I haven’t driven on snow yet this winter, but I have ridden a motorbike on snow and come off! It will be harder with all the parked cars and speed humps. The dreamless ones love their speed humps. If they hadn’t spent millions on those, the traffic wouldn’t be so bad and they wouldn’t be in so much trouble and having to cut local spending by around fifty million. They have entered into a contract with a private company so they will collect garbage and do recycling and the contract is worth 300 million. I thought ‘300 million’? It turned out its 300 million over 25 years; you have to be particularly dreamless to enter into a 25 year contract…
Please comment if you found this blog interesting.