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These are jottings that appear in the monthly catalogue, These are my personal views and thoughts. I'm sorry if they do cause offence, but if they do please re-read them and look to see if there might be some humour lurking.
THE MONTHLY JOTTINGS
Again only a small sale, but this month there are going to be a few pictures.
I've got a couple of new medical matters to add to the list.
Cerebrovascular disease, but no epileptogenic lesions.
Must book another holiday for the end of the year.
Sorry for the delay in the catalogue, took on a bad cough when on holiday and only just starting to get rid of it.
I will be in most mornings 8am - 10am, but best give a ring if you are going to make a special journey.
HEALTH I’m still on my feet, please note new opening hours of 8 am – 10 am unless otherwise arranged.
TYPING OF CATALOGUE New typist this month, philatelic dictionary almost fully loaded.
June - July 2016
SORRY FOR THE DELAY IN THE CATALOGUE
Due to ill health and several hospital appointments, the sale now looks to be around the end of June.
Please look on the main catalogue page for more info.
If I am open then I am on 01202 292905
The Statistics say I’m 1 in 50,000 to 1 in 100,000 for the new medical problem I have, my Sarcoidosis was rated as Uncommon with a rate of 1 in 5,000 to 1 in 20,000 if you take into account my ethnic type.
I have been diagnosed with Penile Cancer, now not many will have heard of that one, it is not your regular testicular cancer or similar things, this one takes matters to a new level.
Pretty picture are availsble at Google images
Even the main Bournemouth Hospital in the cancer dept, have not had much dealings with this one, so I’m going to have to go up to London for this treatment.
It is not as bad as it sounds, there is an 80% rate that once the matter has been dealt with there should be no more problems for at least five years, the matter will be sorted out under local anaesthetic is quite a quick matter.
However they then want to completely put me out and delve about in my lymph nodes to make sure nothing has spread at 20% rate of this problem, they just want to make sure.
THE NEXT SALE
Will now be around August, so goods in from early to mid July please.
A small space rather than adding four extra pages to the catalogue. We should be all in the small side room. Open most morning, best ring on the day to make sure we will be here.
The auctions will now become more postal and internet based, this month we will still probably have the full use of the Dalkeith Hall for viewing during the mornings, before the decorators and refurbishment workers move in, after 40 years it is time for a good redecoration. When that happens, the auction lots will move into a very small room at the side.
The former lavatory block measures five feet by twelve feet, this gives us 60 sq feet, it is possible to fit 800 sq feet of goods from the Dalkeith Hall into this small area (use a diminishing glass rather than a magnifying glass), the urinals and toilets have been removed. Thus there are no toilet facilities for viewers.
The photocopier takes up 10 sq feet, the sink and coffee machine 2 sq ft, Paper 6 sq ft, the other equipment & myself 10sq feet, that leaves about 30 sq ft for stock & viewers.
If there are more than two viewers, additional viewers will need to hang inverted from the ceiling or stay outside.
BID OR BUY
There are two prices by the lots, the lower one is the starting price, get your bids in before the closing date.
The higher price is the price you can buy it for, plus the buyers premium and postage.
For mail order customers it might be best to ring in the morning to see if it still available, waiting for the post to return the form to us might take too long.
This is the main reason for cutting down the size of the auctions, most mornings we will be open.
Ted has found a spot in the new location, so if I’m not available, I think he will be able to cope, please note he does not have my sense of humour and he does not take bribes of Best Malt Whisky (try an iced bun).
THE LAST PUBLIC SALE
This is the last sale where you can gather and bid live, from 2016 the sales will become postal and internet based, there will be some viewing on a Thursday and Friday, more details of the dates in the next posted catalogue or on line.
The other change will be that the lots will become both bid and buy sales.
The lots will have two prices; the lower price is the figure you can start the bidding from, as with current bids, the item will be sold at one bid higher than the second highest underbid. A date when the bids are to be in by will be shown on the catalogue, all very similar to the present system.
The higher figure will be the price you can by it for now, be quick - the first person to make this offer will be the one that gets it. If you are visiting, please remember to bring money or a credit card, there might be something you want to by then and there.
As with the present sales, these lots will not covered by the Distance Selling Regulations on postal sales, you do not have any automatic right to return the goods and cancel the sale. The main reason for this is that as many of the lots are mixed items, it would be unfair on both the vendor and other buyers as to the amount of stamps or postcards returned.
For regular postal customers, most already know that if any lot is not to their liking due to the description, a quick phone call to us will normally solve any problems. For new customers, should you wish to be covered by the Distance Selling Regulations, please do not bid with us, but go and find a retail dealer.
We still need stamps and postcards for future sale, together with coins, medals and other small collectables prior to 1970. Due to limited space we will not be taking the bulkier lots of post 1970 ephemera.
OUR NEW LOCATION
We are moving, due to the high cost of the Dalkeith Hall, where the cost of renting a large area that is really only used for one day a month, is not really viable now I have had to cut down the sale size due to ill health.
The viewing will now take place in the room at the far side of the Dalkeith Hall, visitors to the Dalkeith Hall might have noticed a small black door at the side of the building, this is where you will enter the viewing area from.
Other than the Thursday and Friday, you will probably find this door locked. On these other days please ring me on 01202 292905 or 0777 5599 821 during the mornings to see if I am in.
The viewing area is small, there is room for about two viewers at any one time, persons who wish to come in and look at a large number of items without bidding or buying lots will be discouraged.
Please read the catalogue and make a list of lots you want to view before coming in as there is not the room if you are not actually viewing.
The other matter is that there are no toilet facilities at our new location, there are toilets on the first floor of the multi storey car park or in one of the many coffee shops close to us.
COMING SOON THE LAST PUBLIC SALE
December will be the last public sale, from 2016 the sales will become mainly internet and postal based.
There will be some viewing, possibly on a Thursday and Friday.
The lots on offer will be scaled down bulk wise, our boxed stamps & postcards will still be there, but the general mixed boxes of low value ephemera and collectables that are made after 1970 will be discontinued.
We still want items for auction, so please keep bringing the items in for both the December and February sale.
THIS MONTHS PICTURES
A bit difficult to make a decision as to what should be on the front of this months catalogue as I have 900 images to choose from.
The back page was easy to find. For those persons who visit and find me rather tatty looking, this image proves I can look smart, possibly only on about two days per year, but here is the evidence.
A more interesting photo than that stood by a fake ship’s wheel, or posed next to a long suffering ship’s captain.
Rather an interesting caption, when we arrived on board there was a letter telling us that a short time earlier, that a passenger had developed Legionaries Disease, also a letter from the Board of Health telling us what to do if we felt ill after were had arrived back in England.
For ten points – What was the name of the ship?
In the corner of the viewing room there is a pile of stuff.
You may buy it now.
Each item is £1,
Each item that you take out of a box is £1
You pay for the items before you take them away.
You take them away when you have paid for them, we do not have the room to store them for you.
You can take the entire pile away for £50, but it could be the following day if you want to park your car, van, lorry etc in the pedestrian area.
You carry it away yourself – no help given.
OUT OF BOXES
We have now used up our supply of boxes, from the November sale there will be a mixed assortment of sizes.
If you have any of our Whittard boxes, please return them so we can re-use them, if possible please bring them in full of your surplus items so that we have more items to sell.
Closed during mid September, we will not be open from Thursday 17th September until Saturday 26th September.
Back for Monday 28th September when we will be taking in good for the November sale, as there is no sale in October.
AN EXPERIMENT FOR THIS MONTH
As from 2016 the sales will be more internet based for viewing (there will be some physical viewing available). The number of images per lot will be increased to give a better idea of the content of the lot for the internet side of sales.
When viewing images if there are several images with the same number, this will normally be different parts of the lot. Please let me know what you think of the new images.
From 2016 the numbers of the lots will change slightly, instead of generally having a run of numbers 1 – 300 with odd gaps in between, there will be groups of numbers for each section e.g. stamps 1 – 500, postcards 500 – 1000 etc.
NO VIEWING ON THURSDAY
I plan to take the day off and visit the Great Dorset Mudfest, it will either be hard dry uneven mud or very soft mud, no in between styles of mud are allowed.
Admit 2 for £20 if you get your tickets by post. So I will take someone that can pick me up off the ground when I fall over.
Due to various illnesses I was not able to have my regular day off in July, however I do plan to have a holiday 18th – 24th September, if you can put those dates in your diary, to avoid leaving or delivering goods to the auction around that time.
There will be a small sale at the start of September, no sale in October and then a sale in November.
Due to Sarcoidosis (pretty pictures available on Google images) and other matters, I am not able to put the hours needed to run the auction full time. In the New Year I will have to cut down my hours.
The Solutions that I can think of.
1. Someone takes over the business; I would be able to work part time if wanted.
2. Someone wants to come into the business as a partner and puts in the hours that are needed to bring the number of lots up to past sales.
3. The auction will become smaller in size and mainly be as a postal and internet based auction and sale.
If you have any thoughts on the Auction please let me know.
For those that have known me for many years, will have noticed that I have been slowly loosing odd teeth. Over the years I have tried dentures, but each time a more teeth have been lost, I have needed a new pair of dentures, one of my best sets were a non NHS chrome build, but after a few years when it came to a replacement, all that was fundable was the plastic NCH lumps.
For comfort I went without the teeth, so new customers that have not known me wondered why I never smile, if I did they would have run away, (see photo back page of catalogue).
Now I have a new chrome set thanks to the government allowing people to get at their pension pots, a private appointment with the dentist was able to be made.
I have an unusual mouth, as well as an undeveloped lower jaw, by trying to bite through a car at around eight, my upper teeth were pushed back and sideways, the two front teeth that you have always seen were caps along time ago.
For a fee I will now smile when you come in, either £1 per visit or 1% added to the commission.
For those viewing the images of lots on the internet. Sorry if the images of the smaller lots look a bit odd, I forgot to change the setting on the camera, to the anti shake mode.
As normal I will be having a few days off in July, so there will not be a sale that month.
We still will be open most mornings for the taking in of goods, so before making a special trip around the start of the month, give us a ring to make sure we will be open.
The sale after this June sale will be Saturday 1st August.
IS THERE A GLAZIER IN THE HOUSE
A question that might be asked in a theatre. If I have not managed to replace of glass by the time viewing starts, I might be in need of a man that repairs windows. The glass in the inner door is now broken at about head height.
No, I did not put the head of one of my customers through the glass. A vendor came in asking about a payment he should have received, slightly ranting about that each time he came to the door he found it locked. The simple answer to that is, come before noon, or give us a phone call.
Asking the name and looking at unclaimed payments for 2015, I find there is not a sheet for him, meaning that I have already sent a cheque out.
Asking if he had his receipt on him, that way I can see by the number if a cheque has either been cashed or returned (some of our customers move). I now find out that it is over a year ago, possibly two years ago. In this case I will need the receipt, this I am told he has but it is at home. My reply is either bring the receipt in, or phone us.
Customer is adamant that he is not leaving until I find his payment. Explaining that due to the amount of paper we generate each month, I am unable to find his account unless I have a more or less correct date. Customer does not want to leave; I explain that I will soon be leaving, so he will have to go. I get the reply that he will not leave. I get on with my work, there is little more I can do with out his receipt. Customer rambles on that he left some very rare and valuable stamps with me.
Customer leaves and closes the door, a smash of glass, I go to see what has happened, the customer is crouching behind the door preventing me pushing the door open.
I have a very special door, it opens BOTH ways, I pull the door open, the customer scurries off, faster than I can grab him. He stops at the top of Dalkeith Steps managing to get an audience by shouting I have his stamps. I tell him I’m calling the police and go back inside to make a phone call.
A short time later the police come, after a short statement they go and find the customer, it seems he has a cut hand, and is accusing me of throwing him down The Dalkeith Steps, for those that know the locality, anyone been thrown down the steps would have been either completely out or badly injured. When the ambulance personnel look him over they find no bruises or damage other than a small cut to his hand. Apparently he is in a confused state of mind and is taken off to the hospital. Police return and remove a small piece of his skin from the broken window.
The following day after a couple of stitches, he is still in hospital, with little memory of what had happened.
After several hours of hunting through the paperwork, I find a docket showing a cheque was sent to a flat in Bournemouth for an item that was sold in July 2011.
The value was £10, so unless a receipt can be produced showing, that he brought in other rare and valuable stamps, I take it they made £10. If I issue receipts to new customers, I normally will put on an estimate of the value of the goods if it is above £50, if anything happened to the goods or my set of paperwork, there is proof for the insurance.
So in this case I need a new window. The thought of the day – The customer is not always right.
When purchasing electrical goods over the internet, if it works; everything is fine, when they break down, problems start.
If it is a big company, a phone call might solve you problems, sometimes if you explain the fault, can give them the date of purchase and the serial number, they will just send you a new product and just ask you to dispose of the old item.
The costs they will have to fork out if they get you to send the old item back might easily be £10 - £30, if it is a known fault in a batch of products, as long as you have provided the info, it is far cheaper for them to just send a new product out.
It is some of the high street retailers that are more of the problem; mainly it is lack of training of the staff over the customers (consumers) rights. No you do not need all the packaging if you are returning a faulty item. Within a few days you might still have the box and some of the foam packaging, but don’t expect me to have kept the small little wires that were wrapped around the mains cable, the vast number of small plastic bags that all the little extra bits came in, and the additional EU mains plug that was of no use to me etc.
After nine months, an annoying little fault that has stopped the item working means that the item can be returned for either a refund or replacement or if practical a minor repair, but don’t expect me to have saved all the packaging etc. No I did not take out the additional paid for warranty at the time I purchased the item, the item is not working, you sort it out, I do not have to contact the manufacture over the matter.
It just happens that the manager is on their lunch break and their deputy is away today, and that they don’t have the authority to give a refund. At this point after have been polite having given them my original receipt showing when I purchased the item from them I tend to get a little cross.
I want the matter sorted, blocking a till sometimes gets a member of staff that is authorised to replace the item or give a refund out from some deep location in the store.
Richmond Hill Ice Rink
The revamp of Richmond Hill is almost at an end, parts of other roads will be closed off over the next few weeks, so going down Richmond Hill you might find the out of town driver of a large lorry in tears as he is unable to fathom the odd types of crescents that do not show up on his Sat Nav. How to get from the lower part of Richmond Hill to the rear of M&S in under 25 instructions by local people will be fun.
HELPING THE DISABLED
In the flats where I live, they have recently finished off the lifts, the floor numbering system with its system of both numbers and letters still makes little sense. Ground is zero and the sixth floor is still G.
To help the disabled, Braille floor letters have now been added to the walls outside the lift, I don’t know if Blind Lift Users are normally used to finding their symbols almost six feet up the wall, but that is where they have been put.
For those customers who used to find car parking spaces on the hill, most of those have now gone. The local council have found another method of keeping shoppers out of the town, unless they use one of the councils pay for car parks (prices just increased), remember to carry a few extra 10p coins, you will be paying £1.10 now for a quick visit.
As part of a revamp, the hill has been reduced in width, at the very top two neatly painted dark green metal bollards have been placed at the point where the left hand part of the road used to start, with all the other features in the road layout, I don’t think if will be long before they get hit. Where is the fluorescent yellow paint when you need it.
Just don’t go there; it will only end in tears. What was a simple to understand layout where a road went round a roundabout and was black (dark grey with chewing gum additions), and the pavement was a contrasting colour, showing where to cross and where the vehicles should stop, everything has now been replaced with a mix of heights and a mix of coloured bricks, the large roundabout has been removed, so vehicles do not know how they should pass, all the road markings have also been removed. The only people that seem to think they have priority are the cyclists, both pedestrians and motorists just pray and hope when venturing there.
The nightclubs had a taxi rank outside so punters could come out, get in a taxi and go home. The nearest taxi rank is a half mile walk away. The unlicensed mini cabs should do a good trade this summer.
Jan - Feb 2015
Pre Christmas Holiday
Due to an early start to a trip to Rouen, we were not able to use the normal comfortable restaurant, but had to use Kings Court which runs an almost 24 hours a day cafeteria food selection. I selected eggs, bacon and a couple of sausages, with two trays of sausages I chose one from each, the darker smaller type I took to be a spicier type possibly a Cumberland, the other a light brown succulent large sausage - I took to be the standard British style banger.
We did put in a complaint - we have each been offered $50 spending money next time we travel by Cunard - No way.
Next Month the trip to Antwerp on a car ferry.
There will be no viewing on Saturday 29th November or Monday 1st December. I should be back from the Belgium riots for Tuesday morning.
THE FOLLOWING SALE
Due to Christmas and a short holiday, there will not be a sale in January; the first sale in 2015 will be in February.
Christmas closing will be from 21st December to 5th January, but there will be a few of these days I will be in for odd hours, best ring on the day to see if I will be in before making a special journey.
If you hear a few bangs on Christmas Eve it will be due to the local supermarket selling out of Reindeer meat; I will be out shooting my own when they fly overhead late at night on the 24th.
THERE ARE 57 VARIETIES
Normally I don’t buy famous name brands, mostly down to the cost, but on occasions the main brands seem to cater mainly for the sugar loving person.
With supermarket own brands they are both better value and in my opinion often taste better.
Having a little time on my hands I popped into one of those shops that have everything at a single price, with the £1 shops life is easy, but the 99p versions, I need an abacus to work out the final amount I need to pay, if it is over 20 items my fingers and toes are useless.
One product on offer was a bottle of tomato sauce, which seemed to be made by a famous company at around half the normal price.
Looking at the front of the label all seemed standard, but on the back was all the information in German & French, with a small sticky label in English. The ingredients seemed about what I would normally expect.
On getting it home, I tried a little, it was nothing like the British stuff, this was wonderful it had some taste and did not have the sweet style I expected from this brand.
It appeared this might be similar to the Lidl and Aldi products I normally purchase. Sending an email to the UK headquarters of the famous brand, and asking if other countries had a different recipe for such products. I received their reply back saying that they do. It now seems that I will have to go to Europe if I want more of this nice stuff, or I could do as the newspaper adverts say, “Just go to Lidl.
FRIDAY AFTER SALE
We will be closed on Friday 12th, I’m going to have my brain checked, as coming back from holiday, I need to make sure it is still there.
NO VIEWING SATURDAY OR MONDAY
Due to the NO vote in Scotland, it has been decided to support St Andrews Day, we will be closed on the Bank Holiday Monday 1st December. We will be also closed on the first Viewing Saturday in December, as time is needed to get ready for the celebrations.
The large Tesco lorry may cause delays in Old Christchurch Rd as it tries to negotiate the Water Board Gofers that are planning a new large set of burrows in the nearby Yelverton Rd, when it brings my delivery early that week.
I prefer the Tesco Special Reserve when it comes to whisky (Hint, hint), however I’ve founded the Grants Blended Special Reserve equally pleasant to my pallet.
STAR TREK HAS COME HOME
Parts of the old USS Enterprise or NC1701 to give it the list name, have been recently installed in the building where I live. The Lifts have undergone a complete refurbishment.
For my enjoyment on my floor only, the lift doors have been set to mimic the swishing sound of those on The USS Enterprise (a mechanical noise rather than anything electrical based). As yet we do not have the hand or voice controls, but a funny array of buttons.
Our original buttons and layout of the floors were designed to help the mentally incapable or those suffering from dyslexia, or just totally pissed.
The floors each have a totally different colour scheme on each floor to help those with colour blindness, Red, Green, etc.
The buttons in the lift were designed to help those who would have problems with letters: Ground was B, First floor was C, then going up the building until the fifth floor at the top with the letter G.
There is an floor A, but that is the basement and lifts do not go to that floor, use the stairs instead. It is believed that people do live down there, but most residents have never ventured to that lower level.
Due to our building having these unusual qualities, the new lift was fitted with standard buttons, with a bit of tape scrawled with a letter as to which floor you might want.
The cheapest and easiest idea would have been to fit a standard set of buttons G and then 1- 5, and at the same time repainting the letters on the floors 1- 5, thus solving all the problems.
A replacement set of buttons 0-5 have now been fitted and the service use buttons fitted with the correct symbols. The lift indicator shows the letters when you get to that floor, but there is no way of knowing what button you should have pressed to get to that floor if you only know the floor letter.
To make it even more difficult on one of the lifts the two rows of numbers go 0, 2, 4 and 1, 3, 5. In the second lift they go 1, 3, 5, and 0, 2, 4. So memorising that you need to push the middle left floor button to get you home, will not work if you get into the other lift which is next to the other lift.
The large sign at the front of the building that shows what floor any given flat was at is painted upside down, the painter working off site possibly thought that floor G would be the lowest floor, so showed that at the bottom of the list with the flat numbers, then listing the flats in the reverse order until he listed those on the ground floor at the top of the list.
For some reason delivery men don’t like coming to our building, with furniture they leave it in the main hall on the ground floor, and whatever size it is they say it won’t fit in the lift, and do a runner.
On one of the lifts, there is a small lock with a key slot at the rear of the lift, with an extra door that can make the lift longer in length, to be used when you have longer objects that should be kept flat. During the week coffins are the most favoured item. At weekends when there are no staff about with keys, coffins have to be stood upright; the best solution for those in our block is not to die at weekends or public holidays if you want to leave the building in a dignified way.
COUNCIL INSTALL STREET LIGHTING TO HELP PROSTITUTES
Due to complaints from the local prostitutes that they are finding it difficult to see their punters, the local Council are replacing the orange street lighting with a new high powered white lighting in certain roads.
The lit area covers about the length of the car, the exact colour of the car can now be easily identified, and both parties can easily be viewed for selection.
The one benefit to the local neighbours is that not only does the uprated lighting means a lower amount of power, all uploads to Youtube of the events in the road outside are much clearer and the punters and their vehicles are much more identifiable.
Car tax disc abolished
The DVLA will from 1 October, 2014 abolish the paper tax disc, and it will no longer be issued and required to be displayed on a vehicle windscreen.
SHORT TIME BEFORE NEXT SALE
As the next sale is in the 1st November, please get your goods in as soon as possible. You can always bring the items in on sale day.
For those customers who come to the auction and purchase items in our standard boxes. If possible we would like them to be left with us. Please bring carrier bags etc, to take away your smaller & lighter lots.
Due to the closure of Whittard who supplied our boxes, we only have a limited number left. Leaving the boxes will help keep our costs down.
However what Google want to do with the search terms you have used is between yourselves and Google, all I’m interested in is if you want to bid on any lots I have listed.
As to cookies that are of interested to me, then perhaps viewers could bring in full packets of Marks & Spencer or Waitrose cookies for me rather than the more basic ASDA & Iceland versions, however I’m very pleased to receive those from Lidl or Aldi. Dark chock chip or fruit if possible.
MY SUMMER HOLIDAY
The annual summer holiday was taken on 5th July, so for anyone that came to the Dalkeith Hall on that day and found it closed, you know the reason.
The official reunion of ex National Children’s Home kids went off fine, a natter, a lunch and a strawberry tea was the main order of the day.
Staying in Watford (near the Junction) I found a hotel above a meat eating place, not far to walk for my dinner. Good size single room for £42 with tea & coffee, also a spider on the wall and a pigeon on the roof were all included.
It was clean, but soon it will need refurbishment, the room had a shower, there was a bathroom with a bath, but no plug.
Headed off to Harpenden to the site of the former children’s home I was in, I left in 1968 and the home closed down in 1985. A new religious group took it over at that point. It is almost the same as when I left, former inmates, who now visit for the first time since leaving, find it strange that nothing has changed.
I met up with the girl who in 1965 told me that she wanted to marry me. I haven’t seen her since 1968. She is now married, so I’ve spent the last forty plus years as single man, in vain.
We had a BBQ in the main field next to the cricket pavilion, everything went fine, and we even left it standing. When I first went there, it sort of burnt down (nothing to do with me). The governor in the daily log book entered the event as: Pavilion went up in flames, put out by fire brigade.
For several weeks the remains gave a few of us an endless supply of charcoal, I received the slipper when spotted selecting a piece, I wasn’t doing any harm, but that was how life went on.
April and May seem to have several Bank and other holidays. I feel I must go with the majority and have these days off, they are really tiring, can’t wait to get back to work for a sleep.
THE JULY SALE
Due to the month of June having too few days when an auction catalogue could be made ready for a sale at the end of that month, this year there will not be a sale at the end of June nor the start of July.
Once the sale on Saturday 7th June is over, the sale after that will be on Saturday 2nd August.
Start collecting all your items to bring in NOW if you want them sold in June.
There has been progress. The lavatory and washroom area has now been retiled on the walls and floor and the walls repainted.
To help comply with the disabled regulations where members of the public are admitted, we have made improvements as to the lavatory door that prevented our customers in wheelchairs and Zimmer frames from easy access.
We could have installed an electronic door that opened at a touch of a button; this however was rather an expensive option. We have solved the solution by removing the toilet door and not fitting a replacement, easy access is now available to the lavatory.
CAR TAX DISC TO BE ABOLISHED
The DVLA have announced that from 1 October, 2014, the paper tax disc will no longer be issued and required to be displayed on a vehicle windscreen.
I can see a slight problem. Until now it had been difficult to run two cars at one time by just paying one road tax, you can apply for a duplicate tax disc, but the original is flagged as stolen or missing.
All you will need to do is purchase a second vehicle in the same model, same colour and a similar age, insure it for anyone to drive, buy one tax disc and a new set of number plates, and let a friend drive it. It would be better if it was used in a different area to the main car.
With no tax disc in the window, unless one of the spy cameras has enough guts to work out that there are two cars on the road at the same time at different places, there should not be any reason for it to be flagged up. If you are, just claim that you are the Doctor and you have the ability to be in two different places at the same time.
QUEEN MARY 2 FUND
As yet there have only been a few coppers put in the tin at the Dalkeith, to fund a holiday for me on The Queen Mary 2 at the end of the year.
Several hundred pounds are needed to send me on this ship to keep it in business.
This is the last great liner, we can’t have her sent to the breakers yard or used as a hotel in the USA if she does not pay her way in future years.
Do the right thing, help fund me on a short cruise, I promise to be back for the sale afterwards if all goes well. As this is a joint venture between two countries, we will be able to accept Euros.
THE JULY AUCTION
Due to a Saturday off at the start of July, the sale in July will probably be on Saturday 28th June. The August sale will be on 2nd August.
THE CHRISTMAS HOLIDAY
I managed to get four days away from Bournemouth, to visit Weston Super Mare, Three nights including breakfast & evening meal, a day trip to Bath and coach travel there and back all for £99.
Donations welcome for my next four day holiday at the end of this year, I fancy a trip on The Queen Mary.
THE REVAMP OF DALKEITH HALL
Some work has been done and there is more to do, seems some if the Imps and Fairies did not have enough time after Christmas to do much work, Father Christmas still had them booked, even the Seven Dwarfs and the Tooth Fairy were too busy to lend a hand.
Two Transit vans of rubbish left the building, so there must have been some progress.
WHO IS GOING TO TURN UP ON SUNDAY
In last month’s catalogue I printed the date as the 1st, this was due to looking at one of those odd calendars that put Sat & Sun at the end of the week. The correct day of course is the 7th.
There will not be one, I’m having a few days off, and it would be unkind to expect the Royal Mail to deliver the mail from 20th Dec to 6th Jan.
We will be open most of December after the sale, but at odd times, please ring the day before or on the day to make sure we are open.
The next sale will be in February.
As more of our customers are using the internet, where they can also find the pictures of all the lots and then email in the bids, we are receiving fewer bids via the post.
If you would like to still receive the catalogues by post, no charge in 2014 for regular buyers. Please return the form (it’s on the back of the bid form).
In 2014 I will be revising the mailing list, if you have not returned the form, you will not receive any catalogues.
THERE IS NO SALE
GOODS ARE NOW WANTED FOR THE FEBRUARY SALE
AN EVENING OUT
I was let out for an evening of entertainment this week; a trip to the theatre and an ice cream. With a lady that had seen the stage play several times and dressed up fot the event.
The evening show on stage at the Pavilion Bournemouth was The Rocky Horror Picture Show, having seen the film several times. You all know my taste in weird things; the live show should be interesting.
Perhaps the Pavilion was not the best Bournemouth theatre, but possibly the best location if the audience might sort of make a mess.
Going with a person who had already been to several live performances around the country, I was promised an interesting evening.
This year celebrates 40 years of the live performances with the film version not far behind.
For Bournemouth, perhaps it is a bit strange when the audience is encouraged to have dialog with the actors, there was more silence than participation, but that is what I expected from a Bournemouth audience. I attended a mid week evening performance which apparently was a bit mild according to the person I went with, the Friday and Saturday shows might have seen more action.
Other performances have included activities from the audiences using newspapers, rice, water pistols and rubber gloves, apart from a few torches been waved about, little additional activities went on.
For the audience, most stood up from their seats at the appropriate moments (nothing to do with the National Anthem), and generally moved and waved etc.
There were only a few virgins in the audience, so the events could have been a bit more active, I was told by the person I went with, that this was the first performance she had gone to a performance where her handbag had not been searched for contraband as she entered the theatre. It appears that Bournemouth audiences do not have to be told not bring in water pistols, rice and do other strange things that would give the Shakespeare type audiences several heart attacks.
Due to the rather poor audience in a very full theatre, at times there had to be several minor actors doing more of the heckling to the main actors, making it look like general audience participation.
With the odd layout of the Pavilion Theatre, there is no area for the musicians at the front of the stage; a similar problem is often encounters when the stage version tours around the country.
When the set was built, it could have easily been made so that the musicians were not visible, but in the humour of the show, they were placed in quite a good position over the main stage set, not very visible from the back of the stalls or the circle, but giving the front part of the stalls, of the view of musicians actually playing, and not as most modern performances, pre recorded music etc. It is not a play for anyone that easily takes offence, but a worthwhile event, if it comes to your area.
As to the upright bed scene – disgusting………
Sorry for those who called at the Hall and found it closed for a few days. I was having a jaundice attack.
At the hospital when a doctor was checking over my diabetic problems, there was a comment that I had a rather olive skin. For those that know me, a sort of reddish light brown shade is my normal colour. On checking my eyes she told me the whites were rather yellow, it might be best to contact my own GP. Having been sick and rather unwell for a few previous few days I knew this was one of my annual attacks, as a child I often seemed to get it the second week into the new school year.
Why I should get it most years around this time I don't know. I think they made a film of it in the late 1960s "The boy who turned yellow".
Abandoning all forms of diet and low sugar intake, I have spent the last few days with several bottles of a well known glucose drink, times have changed, they now come in flavours that are nice to drink, even the "original" flavour seems to have been improved, as well as the taste the nasty orange-yellow cellophane wrapper that was on the bottle has gone.
More or less back to normal now.
250 AUCTION SALES
It is now just over 20 years since I took over the auction. With the thanks to vendors and buyers we are now on the 250th sale.
Over the next few months viewers will start to notice a few changes to the auction room.
Enough clutter and bits have taken root over the last 20 years to fill a few skips, so slowly there will be a bit of a clearout, with the new space there will be room to get to the floor, so the carpet tiles that have been in a pile for the last two years will go down onto the floor.
Due to a clearout and redecoration there will not be a sale in January, once the December sale is over, we will be open at various times, but it will be best to give us a call if you are making a special journey down during Christmas and the New Year. The first sale in 2014 will be on 1st February 2014, which we hope will be larger than normal.
There will be some changes to vendors and buyers terms.
As most payments by buyers is by Paypal, Card or cash, rather than cheques which takes a long time to clear, for the majority of vendors the payment will be ready about 31 days after the sale, or on the day of the next sale. It is requested that buyers settle their accounts if possible by return.
Cash for your goods.
There will be a new service where we might be able to buy your items for cash at the point you bring them in. We will not be operating the various methods in Pawn Stars TV series where five or so minutes are spent haggling once the seller has asked for a very high amount.
If possible tell me what you are looking for, if it is reasonable, you will get it. If you don’t know what the item is worth, I can always make an offer.
I will not spend time haggling, if it is too high I will tell you there and then, the auction might then be the best solution, where it will make its current value.
Slight changes to vendor charges.
The charge once the item is sold will be £5 per lot up to the hammer price of £50, items over £50 will be 15% of the hammer price.
There will still be a discount rate for any funds you are using to purchase goods in any sale.
It was a nice warm summer day so I decided to go swimming. As a Bournemouth resident, the last place I would want to go would be to the main area of the Bournemouth seafront, it is too crowded, there is a lack of parking and the cost of any ice cream is very high.
The Highcliffe area seemed a nice location, I aimed at Mill Lane and found a very nice road to park on, it was a Sunday so there were only a few other cars about. A rather longer walk than expected down through a wooded path to a grass area where a number of bunny rabbits had been earlier in the day.
The beach was only a short distance away; an ice cream vendor with very reasonable prices was encountered before the beach. Unlike Bournemouth with its miles of golden sand, the beach consists partly of small pebbles in a slope, but nothing I thought might cause a problem.
I’m getting old, the knee and ankle joints have now gone past their Best Before Date, I should now realise why I have a blue badge.
Wearing boots all day even when I’m not riding, allows my ankle and lower leg to be well supported at all times. Stripping off and attempting to walk down this pebbled area, I realise that perhaps this was not the best idea, with the pain from the pebbles digging into my feet; there was a balanced problem with my ankle unable to support the nineteen plus stone of what was above it.
Eventually I reached the sea, although it was not all sand, I slowly walked out into the cool English sea, by moving slowly it meant I was not totally shocked by the coldness of the water. Once up to by chest I was able to go completely under and start to swim.
Many years ago, I achieved my 500 yards swimming cert, now all I could manage was three strokes in the crawl, the breaststroke was no better with an equal three strokes. It might be best to give up now.
Knowing that if I went back to the beach, it was going to be agony going up the shingle, I headed over to a groyne of flattish rocks, I should be able to climb on to the top and walk along. I did manage to get to the top area; I now found out that although they had reasonably flat even surfaces, my ability to get across them was rather difficult.
After loosing my balance a few times, I slipped back and sent my ankle into a gap between two of the boulders. It could have been serious, I could have either have fallen completely back and hit my head or either broken or sprained my ankle, by luck it was only a graze.
An elderly lady reading a book nearby came to my rescue and helped me up and then walked me back to where there was a short run of pebbles before the path, I thought rather than try to balance by walking across the pebbles I would just crawl the last ten feet or so. I have to admit, I am past it for such activity. It was just by luck that her husband returned and I was lead back to the path each supporting me by the arm.
The person I had gone with now brought my clothing to where I was recovering. Apparently I was making such a comical site with my arms flapping; they could not leave the seat for laughter.
Soon I was fully dressed, my boots giving enough support to my ankle to limp off back in search of the ice cream van.
I must give my thanks to the couple that helped me so much.
As well as the graze to my foot, I also ended up with sunburn across my shoulders, something I have never encountered before, turning from light brown to a lobster pinkish fawn shade is totally new to me, I normally just go a deeper shade of brown. I must be growing old.
I must pick an easier beach next time, Frias Cliff looks to be a possibility, so if you see someone flapping their arms whilst walking on the beach, it’s only me.
Over the years, people that serve the public have changed their attitude to how the public are to be treated.
Rather than listen to a member of the public (the people who pay their wages) they decide that they should take control, and enforce their thoughts without even listening to what a member of the public has to say, and demanding all sorts of instructions should be followed.
If only these Public Servants realised that their main role is to serve the public, rather than devise their own agenda, it would all be for the better.
THE JULY SALE
Please remember that this July is held in June.
29th of June is the date for this sale.
My annual day of holiday is 6th July, so we will be closed, please do not come that day either for the sale, or the lots you won in the sale that has just gone.
Due the catalogue appearing a few days before the sale, please email your bids in or phone during the mornings.
It is with regret that we have to announce the death of Garnet on 21.06.13.
Mr Langton for several years described the postcard section of the catalogue, as well as originally starting the auction side of the business in 1980 which he ran until his retirement, then working part time as a describer for Dalkeith Auctions.
THE JULY SALE
TRIP INTO SPACE
Where I live we still have the hole with the exposed cable, as yet no sign of any progress. The lawn was sprayed with red paint to show where the new cable should go.
The man who cuts the grass paid a visit; there are now no red marks on the lawn. We are waiting for a man to come and mark the lawn in red to show where the electric cables should go.
The garage door is now broken, small cars can just about to get out, normal size larger gars are stuck for most of the day. We are waiting for a man to come and look at the door.
Almost all gone now, offers to the council for the rights for the hole for the autumn onwards, should be sent to the Town Hall.
The Surf Reef, the rumours that resident of Brighton have been arriving at night and stealing our sand from the large leaking bag are completely untrue, the new culprits are believed to be those at Chisil Beach at Portland, in retaliation for all the Bournemouth visitors who have been removing pebbles for their gardens. Soon that beach at Portland will be 12 miles of golden sand, beating the once famous holiday resort of Bournemouth over its miles of golden sand.
MONEY TO BE SPENT FOR CYCLISTS
Recently the top of Richmond Hill was repainted to make it easier for motorists to get around the traffic island.
A grant has now been obtained so that the council can remove the new painted markings and add ones that are more cyclist friendly.
It is hoped that they will show several cyclists what the plan to mark out the roads are.
For visitors that come off the Richmond Hill roundabout in a car and are in the left hand lane to go into the car park, please ignore the white dotted markings at the top of the hill, as these will push you into the fast traffic on your right that wants to go down the hill.
BOURNEMOUTH TO REMAIN OPEN
During the summer it is hoped that Bournemouth will remain open during the snow and torrential rain that has been forecast for the months of June to August.
THE NEXT SALE IS JUNE
The next sale will be on 2nd June, there will also be one on 29th June, there will not be a sale in July.
SNOW IN BOURNEMOUTH
SPRING IS HERE
THE FEBRUARY EVENTS
A few postal buyers found their good arriving a few days late last month, sorry but I was occupied with having a bathroom fitted where I live, thus taking up my time during part of each day, and it also meant there was not much time to do March sale goods.
Anyone singing the song: “It was on A Monday morning when the gas man came to call……..”
TIME FOR A CLEAROUT
COMPUTERISED TILLS AND PRICES
VIEWING FOR THE JANUARY SALE
NEWS FROM THE DAILY MAIL
NEW MARS BARS
LEFT IN TESCO
No jottings for the internet catalogue, but a plea in the printed catalogue for subscriptions.
AUTUMN IS HERE
THE COUNCIL TAX
YOU WILL SMILE AND ENJOY YOURSELF
NEW ELECTRICITY METERS
SUMMER HAS STARTED
The July sale will be on Saturday 7th July.
It will be an early start
Viewing from 7am
Sale sarts at 9.00
We will finish early.
I’M GOING TO HAVE A HALF DAY OFF
PLEASE DONATE AN OLD BICYCLE
OPEN DURING THE HOLIDAYS
CHARGES FOR SELLING
WHERE I GET MY CAFFEINE FIX
ROYAL MAIL TO LOWER PRICES
WINNER OF LAST MONTHS COFFEE COMPETITION
CIVET CATS TO DEMAND A WAGE INCREASE
HOW MUCH IS 100g of COFFEE POWDER
HOW LONG IS A MONTH?
A NEW TOY
ARE YOU SHORT OF CASH?
THE CHRISTMAS DINNER
DID YOU GET ANY CHOCOLATE COINS FOR CHRISTMAS
THE POSTAL SERVICE
OPEN HOLIDAY MONDAY
Wasser Stoppt Dehydration
If I’m not here next week, I’m possibly in Stalag 17b, along with the other prisoners who thought water would stop dehydration.
Google and Reindeer
PS. Please Father Christmas
IT’S SUBSCRIPTION TIME
POSTCARD COLLECTORS WITH MONEY LEFT
LAST MONTHS VIEWING
POSTCARDS THIS MONTH
TYRES FOR THE CAR
WINTER OPENING HOURS
PLANET OF THE APES
BOURNEMOUTH ON SEA
THE POSTAL BID AUCTION
CLOSED SATURDAY 23rd JULY
2012 CULTURAL OLYMPIAD
AND NOW FOR SOMETHING COMPLETELY DIFFERENT
ALL LOTS ARE ILLUSTRATED
PAYING FOR MY HOLIDAY
LIMIT OF BIDS
ANOTHER BANK HOLIDAY
ILLUSTRATIONS IN THE CATALOGUE
THE JULY SALE
STRIKE DAY 30th JUNE
THE THINGS WE SELL
DO YOU HAVE A HOLIDAY OR TWO FREE?
OLYMPIC GAMES 1948
GEORGE V £1 POSTAGE STAMP
VIEWING THE GROT BOX
IF YOU VISIT US EARLY
HOW IS YOUR SPRING CLEAN GOING?
IT’S SPRING CLEAN TIME
THE TIME TRAVEL LOTS OF LAST MONTH.
POSSIBLE TIME TRAVEL
PLEASE REMEMBER TO LOOK AT THE IMAGES
Some of the lots are illustrated on the Images page.
TIME FOR A NEW PHOTOCOPIER
IT’S THE LAW OF THE LAND
DUE TO BAD WEATHER
HAPPY HOLIDAYS or Something along those lines
DO I HATE CHRISTMAS
THEM BANANAS AGAIN
YOUR NEW YEAR PRESENT FROM THE GOVERNMENT
THE £3 FEE FOR SELLING LOTS
It’s Getting Near To Subscription Time
PENNY FOR THE GUY
JANUARY SALE THE 8th
ENGLAND TO CLOSE DOWN DUE TO LACK OF INTEREST
ROYAL MAIL DON’T LIKE ME
BOURNEMOUTH AIR SHOW
BOURNEMOUTH WEATHER DEPARTMENT
RINGWOOD TO BOURNEMOUTH
The Holidays Are Over
It’s Holiday Time
DRAGGED INTO THE 21st CENTURY
Looking on the internet for the best deal on something with Windows 7, yes I resisted Vista, realising what a pain it would be. Found a reasonable deal with Tesco Direct. So I popped into one of the larger stores to see if they actually had one, the model I wanted had to be ordered at a desk.
M.P.’s TO GENERATE GREEN ELECTRICITY
PLEASE ADMIRE OUR SPRING FLOWERS
THE JULY SALE IS IN JUNE
USE BICYCLES TO VISIT BOURNEMOUTH HOSPITAL
IMAX TO REOPEN
I CAN EAT THIS MONTH
THE CINEMA IS TO GO
Personally, I would fill the building up with straw, waste paper and a few fireworks and see how big a bonfire we could have to celebrate 200 years of Bournemouth.
Note to the residents of Christchurch, if when the building is demolished you come down to see the view of our coastline, please note you will be charged for this privilege.
If you have any other solutions for the site, please send your suggestions on a postcard to:
MORE SCHOOLS NEEDED IN BOURNEMOUTH
HAPPY NEW YEAR
STILL TIME TO GIVE ME MONEY
LAST MONTH’S JOTTINGS
IT’S SUBSCRIPTION TIME
I CAN’T HEAR MUCH
WHAT’S IN MY LUNCH
No jottings this month, I''ve had two days holiday, so there was not time to write anything.
PLEASE DON’T COME SATURDAY 4th JULY
THE SALE IS ON SATURDAY 11th JULY 2009
THE VIEWING COUNTER
THE JULY SALE
SPRING IS HERE
Stamps, Postal History, Postcards & Paper Goods–
Unreserved lots of Stamps and other Paper Items
Other Collectors Items Glass, China, Metal etc.
Unsold goods if returned charged at £2. plus all other charges and any postage.
TRADE RATE Available on request.
VALUE ADDED TAX this is not charged on any goods in the sale as vendors are taken to be either non registered for vat or operating the global vat scheme.
VAT. A fee of 15% will be added to the commission and lotting charges to offset non-recoverable vat.
Stamps, Postal History, Postcards & Paper Goods–
Unreserved lots of Stamps and other Paper Items
Other Collectors Items Glass, China, Metal etc.
Unsold goods if returned charged at £2. plus all other charges and any postage.
TRADE RATE Available on request.
VALUE ADDED TAX this is not charged on any goods in the sale as vendors are taken to be either non registered for vat or operating the global vat scheme.
VAT. A fee of 15% will be added to the commission and lotting charges to offset non-recoverable vat.
NEW POSTAL CHARGES
THIS STAMP WILL SELF DESTRUCT IN TEN SECONDS
GOVERNMENT TO PRINT MORE MONEY
LOCAL GOVERNMENT OVERSPENDS
RATE OF INFLATION FOR PENSIONERS YEARLY INCREASE
THE PARTY BEAR
BONFIRE FOR THE BEAR
Happy Nightmares Tonight
SPECIAL OFFER JANUARY SALE
HAPPY AT CHRISTMAS
Happy Christmas 1966
1966 Contents of Flat 1
It was only a light tap
It is for real
The girl is showing the boy''s what is going to happen to their hands
Have we been good this year?
I know it''s comming
It''s not the cold that makes my hands sting
In the normal way Father Christmas would sit you on his knee and ask you if you have been good this year, in a children''s home it is slightly different.
A Nissan Crew - Taxi
A Nissan Crew - Thats been Mitsuokered
The car next to a Bentley. If these two mate the result should be interesting.
ITS SUBSCRIPTION TIME
LONG FORGOTTEN PRODUCT
AUTUMN IS HERE
RIOT IN BOURNEMOUTH
HOW TO CATCH A TRAIN
Only question, do they not speak English at Waterloo - Foot service provider?
THE GARDEN NEEDS CUTTING
NOTE IN YOUR DIARY - JULY 2008
BRING BACK THE ‘B’ MOVIE
SPRING IS HERE
THE END OF CONFUSION
LOSS OF TANSY
ON THE 29th
THIS MONTH’S CATALOGUE
PAY UP YE VARMINTS
Yes it’s the 2007 Christmas good will message from Dalkeith Auctions. It is time for subscriptions again, a nice little form is enclosed with this months catalogue, I hope many of you will return it with your payment, for anyone that does not want catalogues for 2008, would they please return the form so that we can remove your address from the mailing list.
A stamp is enclosed with this catalogue for you to return the sub form, if you have already paid the sub, the stamp can be used for your bid form or even to send a Christmas card to someone.
SMALL SPLODGES IN THE CATALOGUE
As an experiment, I’m printing this months catalogue on a form of recycled paper. It is not recycled paper in the normal sense, where paper is collected in the recycling scheme and then turned into fresh white paper. The paper that is used this month is paper that has previously been through a copier.
Please don’t try to read the previous writing by holding the paper up to the heat, dipping it in an acidic solution etc to detect a hidden message. I can’t tell you where the paper came from, but I can reveal that it is from a location in Dorset not too far from Wareham.
CUT DOWN A TREE AND GET MORE TV
Now winter is upon us, I trimmed down a tree, so the satellite dish could get a better view of the sky. Not the SKY satellite but a couple of ASTRA satellites that broadcast most of the European programmes.
With the view clear a second group of satellites ‘Hotbird” now came into view. If you thought Freeview with its choice of 100 channels was enough to watch, I’ve now got a selection of 500 channels that are all free, I can even pick up SKY News with out paying for it, (I’ve been told that the man might soon ask for some money to watch his channel). Everything is on 24 hours a day with no need for any pin number or to observe any watershed of time. My new mix as well as the German and French lot, include American Religious programmes, Arabic news and general programmes, Italian, Eastern Europe, Half a ton of other programmes which I’ve no idea what language they are gibbering in, and about twenty porn channels that show tantalising snippets of their fare and give a phone number for you to ring so you can buy a decoder card, also if it takes your fancy a couple of channels aimed at men, let us say not channels that would be allowed to be broadcast or owned by a British company, but one where the programmes would scare the horses. Mixed in with the bunch are a whole range of children’s channels, parents that can receive these satellites better keep control of the handset, we wouldn’t want the little darlings learning to see what the rest of the world knows.
FOR THOSE NOT ATTENDING THE NEXT SALE
IT’S SPRING CLEAN TIME
THE DOCTORS DIET
I’M BACK FROM THE SMOKE
REMEMBER WHEN THE NEXT
The sale is Saturday 30th June. There is NO sale in July, if you come on 7th July you will find the door closed.
This is on 7th July, I plan a trip to London, the ticket is purchased, the seat is reserved and the police will be ready waiting for me when I arrive at Waterloo station. For anyone in London, if you see a larger white van with a police escort back and front that holds up all the traffic, there is a good bet that I will be inside, it’s a cheaper way of crossing London in the direction of Paddington than taking the tube or bus.
I HAVE BEEN PROMISED MY BOOK
After wearing out two editors and proof-readers, the book of my time in The National Children’s Home “Philip A Strange Child” is now at the printers. After going through several proofs and grammatical corrections, the first edition has been judged ready to print. Looking at the final proofs for the umpteenth time I can see a few niggling little things that need correcting, but they will have to wait until a second printing.
The printer has promised to bring it down ready for this sale, but possibly floods, crinkly paper and several other things will delay it.
I did get a test printing done in April 2005, but realised the book needed thinning down and many corrections needed doing. The new version has been cut down to 230 pages.
Should you see blood stains in the area outside the door, one of two things will have happened, either it is not ready and the printer coming down do offer his humble apologies did not bow down low enough, or something really horrible has happened to the print run.
TO GET A COPY OF THE BOOK
Simple, send us some money. Normal price £9.95. But to auction customers a special price of £5.99 if you collect, or £6.99 if you want it posted.
Philip A Strange Child. by Philip J. Howard. ISBN 978 0 9555878 0 1 Published June 2007.
VISIT TO LONDON
I did get my bargain break, £18 to London and back by train, I think the current price today is around £70 if you want to get up for 9am.
The train was a few minutes late leaving Bournemouth, but I was told by the guard, not to bother getting off at Winchester, but to get off at Basingstoke as they were have an extra stop there. Nice train, I like the new rolling stock that has been given to our line.
Got off at Basingstoke and asked the customer service department which platform I should go to for my train to London, they told me not to bother catching that train I should just get on the next London train that came in, so instead of getting into London at 09.17, I actually got in at 09.00, not bad for £18 and there was even a reserved seat for me on the 19.05 train back to Bournemouth.
THE NEXT SALE AFTER THIS
Due to the Omens from the God of money, I have been told that 07.07.07 is not a day to have financial transactions occurring. As this was originally a sale date, I have moved the sale a week forward. The sale will not take place on the first Saturday of July, but will take place on the last Saturday of June. This date of 07.07.07 however also coincides with one of the days I want off. I’m going up to London again. I’ve been told to avoid parts of the Northern Line, seems there might be delays.
NO NUTS IN MY CHOCOLATE
I was very disappointed in one of the Easter Eggs I got this year. Made by Cadbury’s, it had a sticker on the box “Contains Nuts”, very disappointed, there were no nuts inside.
I wrote a letter of complaint, their reply was that they had to withdraw a large amount of their Easter Eggs as they were made on production lines that use nuts so they affixed stickers to warn of possibly allergies.
To me this does not answer my complaint – There were No Nuts, must write a letter of complaint.
The Isle of Wight to be Destroyed.
The Isle of White issue of stamps are going to face destruction after the Post Office printed them with the wrong spelling, It appears that a new version with the words ‘Isle of Wight’ are now in production.
The other Isle of Wight news is that Amoy Noodles don’t want their customers on the Isle of Wight to ring their care line. Clearly they print that “Customer Care Line Call free (UK Mainland Only) 0800 072 4090.
I think a few of our customers who struggle from this offshore island, should voice their opinions about their treatment as foreign persons, after all the noodles were made in China, don’t they know where the Isle of Wight is, or were they thinking of Kowloon?
I MIGHT BE TAKING A HOLIDAY
I’ve thought up a cunning plan. Last year I took a day’s holiday, this year if I take a day off early in the year, I might be able to sneak another one later in the year without anyone noticing. Next year I could add another day, and then go on each year adding an extra days. By the time I reach official retirement date of 65, I would then be getting seventeen days holiday each year, or if I took Stamp Dealers Retirement date a whopping 32 days holiday a year.
Where to go, O.K. it’s not really a holiday, but a conference in London. Having mastered the train last year, I thought I would have another bash at this mode of transport. The main problem is that the conference starts at 10.30am, so the Cheap-Day Return ticket is not available. Over £67 for a Day Return is not on. So I start looking at the South West Trains web site more closely. The phrase “There may be alternative, slower routes with cheaper tickets” caught my eye.
There used to be a dodge where if you purchased tickets for different parts of a journey you could cut the cost a little, what used to be frowned upon by the railways is now openly encouraged, not only will they tell you the costs, but to save you the bother of going to the stations and buying the tickets, they will even send them to you (from Scotland).
The trains that I would like to take, and have the fare of £67 from Bournemouth, are 06.56, or the 07.26 and 07.30 that get into London at 09.25.
However if I take the 06.56 from Bournemouth and get off at Winchester at 07.47 and get and onto the 08.04 from Winchester, then I get off at Basingstoke at 8.21 and then catch the 08.29 from Basingstoke it will take me into London at 09.17, coupled with this there is also a return ticket (direct) thrown into the deal, all for £18.30 and that includes reserved seats for most of the journeys - please tell me what planet I’m on.
However there might be a better deal, a link on the South West Trains site takes you to Megatrain and Megabus. Seems there is a cheap fare up to London first thing in the morning by coach, but I do have to get up to Bournemouth University - from the town center (cost about £1.10), Single up to London £1, and take the train back for £6.
It’s going to be a difficult decision £18.30 or go for the cut-price option of £8.10.
Will let you know next month.
WE NEED YOUR NUMBER
If you are paying by credit or debit card, it is now important that we have the last three digits that are printed on the back of your card.
As an incentive, the company that processes my payments is now going to charge extra for payments that are supplied without this number, that cost would have to be passed onto you, so let’s have the three digits.
I must apologise to all our customers that were caught in the snow drifts when visiting us in the last week or so. It was your own fault for living in places where snow fell. If you had lived in Bournemouth with its nine miles of sandy beaches and its sub tropical climate with palm trees you would not have experienced the snow. (Sorry seven miles of sandy beaches – we’ve just imported two miles of pebbles from Brighton or Branscombe).
PURCHASED THE T-SHIRT
On eBay, there was a t-shirt offered promoting the antics of the folk that visited Branscombe Bay, themed on the idea from the film Whisky Galore, it depicted a local person making off with some salvage from the wreck.
eBay have decided to remove any item of salvage that appears on the site, this t-shirt was also removed (not before I had put my order in though). Although it was not salvage but a modern souvenir. It appears they took offence to the words on the front of the shirt of ‘Skanky Pikey Ba**ards’. Come on eBay, them folk that went down to the beach were doing quite legal collecting, as long as they informed the authorities on what the had removed.
JUST WHEN YOU THOUGHT IT WAS SAFE TO GO TO THE POST OFFICE
As everyone has almost become use to the prices for Letters, Large Letters and Packets in the Post Office’s Pricing in Preponderance, they have just published the new rates.
Guess what, the price of sending things through the post is going up in April.
Just when you had reconfigured all your eBay rate tabs, you’re going to have to change them again.
DON’T GO TO THE POST OFFICE
SORRY THAT THE TEXT HAS ALL RUN TOGETHER, The HOSTING COMPANY HAVE LOST ALL MY PARAGRAPH SPACING
CHRISTMAS & THE NEW YEAR If you are reading this from 26th onwards, it means I have had a very happy Christmas. The plans for Christmas Day, start work at 8am (half an hour later than normal) making sure most of the phones are turned to silent. I will leave one line on, for those who know my secret number, to ring me and wish me a happy Christmas. Other than going to the top floor of the local car park and shouting my views about Christmas etc., I think I will have a quiet time.
The catalogue needs to be printed, the envelopes stuffed, if anyone finds some Paxo in the centre of the catalogue, it’s because I was stuffing two things at once, then it’s stamp them all up and bag them ready for when Royal Mail wake up again. It’s not that I’m a real Grinch, it’s that I like a quiet time. I’ve a few toys to play with and I don’t have to share with anyone. There’s a Spirograph for making designs, a Bayko building set - much better than Lego, a Give a Show projector, and best of all, a real amusement machine with almost 500 tokens. Also the 50,000 sheets of plain white paper, the 5kg of chocolate and enough chocolate milkshake mix to make up at least 100 gallons. Yes I’m greedy they’re all mine, that is until sale day when I have to part with some of them, by letting others buy them and take them away. It’s daft but I have more fun now that I’ve grown up to play with toys than I did as a child. Christmas forty years ago. Waking up at the age of nine and realising that perhaps Christmas this year might be better than my last four Christmas times. Aged 5: moved with my mother from London to the West Country, Freezing snow, power cuts and my mother working all day. Aged 6: Mother working all day, a useless toy typewriter that ran out of ink after about ten minutes, and our Christmas cake – a chocolate Swiss roll.
Aged 7: Now I find myself placed in a Naughty Boy’s Home (I didn’t do it honest), with the thought I know where I will be spending the next four years and all my Christmas Holidays. Christmas was fun and there were plenty of toys – I got chucked out a couple of weeks later, it seemed I wasn’t naughty enough after all. Aged 8: Now in a Children’s Home. Estimated number of future years and Christmas times here – seven. The main event of that year was getting the cane by the man who a few days later, dressed up as Father Christmas and asked us “had we all been good”? Forty years ago at the age of 9: I had fun on waking up, of opening my stocking and eating the foodstuff that was inside, the only day of the year when we were allowed to have food in the bedroom. Got slippered by the Houseparent on getting up, whilst I did early morning chores, the others started on their presents. When I did get to my presents the best one was a Spirograph, the joy doesn’t last for long, the coloured pens were borrowed by the others, never to be seen again. The two long plastic pieces in the set are snapped by one of the boys whilst flicking something at one of the others, and the Houseparent spotted the pins that are needed to hold the parts onto the paper, allowing a shape to be made accurately, and then confiscated them. That’s the end of that toy. The two other items I hoped to have amongst my other toys: The hangman’s noose, I wanted to have fun in the woods (alone) with that toy, or the set of six sharp daggers, which I wanted to share with the six other children in my flat, which were also missing from my wish list. No I don’t believe in Father Christmas. There’s always next year. ARE THE AUSSIES STILL TAKING THE PISS Purchased as a luxury treat for myself a few bottles of Ginger Beer, imported all the way from Australia. This brew from Bundaberg at least tastes better than some of the British stuff that is found in the supermarkets. I wonder if the Aussies are trying to make fun of us. The printed instruction on the bottle: “INVERT BOTTLE BEFORE OPENING”. Yes that might work in Australia, a country that is upside-down, but in England the ginger beer just runs out onto the floor. I have written to the company asking that an extra instruction to be added to the bottles that are sent over to us. On the bottom of the bottle, could they print the instruction: “NOW TURN UPRIGHT”. IS YOUR £10 STAMP ALL RIGHT? Stamp collectors who have a 1993 £10 FDC, might like to check the condition of their cover. If it is housed in a quality FDC album made prior to 1995 they may find that the heavy duty plastic is affecting this particular stamp. As security features the Post Office used ink, that whilst not affected by water is affected by chemicals found in certain types of plastic. Some of the ink starts to discolour and change shade. The only remedy is to take the cover out of the album, and use it to light the Christmas pudding; it will have no value to stamp collectors in the future. CHILDREN TOLD THAT THERE IS NO FATHER CHRISTMAS To the school children aged nine, who were told that Father Christmas was not real, and was only for little children. I have only a couple of bits of advice. Either sue you school for this upsetting event, or act your age and arson the school. WHERE CAN I BUY MY CRYSTALS. It has been announced that Dixons have now stopped selling analogue radios. The type that have Medium and long wave bands and possible even F.M. I bet this will mean that they have also stopped selling the crystals that I need to use when I tune into 2LO.
AT LAST IVE DONE IT
I found the solution on the internet, Ive been puzzling the problem since the age of eight. (> = to). Horizontal rows A-G. and Vertical rows 1-7.
B4>D4, C6>C4, D4>B4, C2>C4, A3>C3, C4>C2, A5>A3, B5>B3, A3>C3, D3>B3, C1>C3, B3>D3, E1>C1, E2>C2, C1>C3, E4>E2, C3>E3, E2>E4, G3>E3, E4>E2, G5>G3, F5>F3, G3>E3, E2>E4, D5>F5, E7>E5, C7>E7, E4>E6, E7>E5, F5>D5, D6>D4.
I WANT ONE OF THOSE
Our local council are finding a large number of people are ringing them up and swearing down the phone.
The problem is Bournemouths Bins. The bin men are now searching the bins residents have been placing out for recycling, if the find an item that Bournemouth Council do not recycle, they do not empty the bin, but place a sticker asking the resident to phone the council.
The council will then explain to the resident that they dont want all the items that can be recycled, they just want certain items. What the really are doing is picking and choosing the recyclable goods that will get them nearer to the government target, rather than helping the environment in fully recycling all recyclable material. Once the resident has accepted that they are in the wrong, are very naughty and promise not to do it again, the council will arrange to have their bin emptied on this occasion. Next time it happens they will be taken to Bournemouth Square, tied to the Eternal Flame (currently turned off to save energy) and beaten with the mayoral chain.
What I want is one of these stickers, I reckon I could make some money if I offered it on ebay.
On ringing the council for one. The conversation went like this:
Me: Its about the stickers that you are sticking on Bournemouth bins,
Me: Could I have one please,
Jobsworth: Why do you want one?,
Me: So that I can put it on ebay,
Jobsworth: Why do you want to put it on ebay?,
Me: So that I can make some money,
Jobsworth: We dont give them out.
Me: So the only way I can get one is to mix some ordinary rubbish with the items for recycling.
End of conversation.
THE CLOCKS WENT BACK AGAIN
As a few Scots are opposed to us adopting Central European Time, as they would have to milk their cows in the dark. Why dont they just buy themselves a watch and milk the cows an hour later. I think Ive found the solution.
Currently the Greenwich Meridian is at 0 degrees longitude, thats fine I will leave it where it is. What I want to do is move the International Date Line to the same position.
So, West of 0 degrees will be yesterday, or going East to 0 degrees it will be tomorrow.
The main advantage I can see is on Speeding tickets - Speed in the East, then go back West, which will be yesterday, park somewhere where you will be monitored on video all day (tomorrow), which shouldnt be very difficult. When the ticket comes through, you have proof, on the day in question, your car didnt move from the spot.
POWER HEAT & LIGHT
The electricity billing problems with Powergen at the Dalkeith Hall have almost been solved.
The computer at the power supply company has finally accepted that the business has two meters and that I do not have Economy 7 heating. However it still will be very difficult to send me a bill for the meter that uses electricity on an obsolete tariff that they no longer quote for.
I have just accepted a new contract for the next three years, subject to written conformation from someone high up in the organisation. Im told that the computer has agreed it, but I have asked for a written reply from a human, as I know their computer has a mind of its own.
The computers solution is to charge me for one meter instead of two, but with double the cost, seems it keeps things simple. At last a computer with a bit of common sense, as I now in theory do not have a second meter, they are not able to put in a price for electricity on the second meter that does not exist in theory but only in space. The computers solution to get over the problem, to charge me a nil rate for electricity used between 11pm 8am.
Thanks power company, if you are willing to that contract for three years, Ill say yes.
A minor problem that might arise as Im a business, there is the little matter about the government charge that goes on the bill as Climate Charge Levy at approx 0.43p per unit. Am I going to be charged that on the nil electricity I use?
NO EXTRA PAYMENTS FOR WORKING UNSOCIAL HOURS
During the winter months when our viewers want to be kept warm when viewing, I might have to change viewing hours from 11pm to 8 am as thats when the heating comes on. Ill have to negotiate with the staff over the new hours. When they learn that due to new regulations, there are to be no extra payments for working unsocial hours theres going to be a riot.
Under the new loony working hours directive, staff who choose to work normal hours in the day of their own choice, can now demand and receive the extra payments that staff the work at night or at other unsocial periods get as a bonus.
ANOTHER HOWARD EXPELLED FROM SCHOOL
I must congratulate Tamara Howard of Manchester at been expelled from her school. Tamara aged five has been expelled for physically and verbally attacking teachers and other pupils. With about six months of lessons, the teachers have decided that they are unable to cope, so have called in a psychologist and then expelled the child.
For me it was at the age of six and a half, before my first school decided that we should part company, but in a way I wish to claim equal status to Tamara, I only started school at six. It was a few more years before they called in the psychologist for me.
DO NOT SEND ME A BIRTHDAY CARD
In a few months time it will be my birthday. Im just giving you this information so you can start saving for my present.
What it appears you must not do is send me a birthday card with the age shown on it. Apparently it will now fall foul of the new government regulation on ageism, and any staff member receiving such a card at work, will now be able to sue, for a high damage award.
After a period of complaints from die-hard beef eaters. Unilever have put the beef back into Bovril. Many former Bovril eaters had given up purchasing the product when the company removed the meat content from the product in the wake of the BSE crisis, although the meat that had gone into their product was never suspect, it was thought that putting beef into Bovril might scare the customers.
Many former Bovril customers happily found their beef fix in rival own brand products. Unilever will now have the problem of trying to get their customers back, many of whom are quite happy with the replacement products that are actually a third cheaper.
With the new act that is just about to come into force, it makes it illegal to discriminate on age grounds. Whilst this is ideal in employment terms, it may cause other problems. It is hoped that the government have worded this act correctly. Unless they have, I can see a few arguments that might erupt. The older generation have become used to discount on fares, admission to cinemas, events, and pensions.
Unless the act is correctly worded can non-pensioners ask for discounts. Will a thirty year old, now be able to complain that he has been discriminated against, due to age.
Where do I go to put in my claim for a pension, now that I cant be discriminated against due to age?
The company that sends my electricity bill has got itself in a bit of a mess with my account. It all goes back to the good old days when your local Electricity Company supplied your electricity, read your meter then sent you a bill. What could be simpler? Then came privatisation, I could understand if other companies started making their own power, put down their own cables and plied for custom. That the local electricity company still supply the power and do the meter reading, and then someone else sends the bill, is something I can just about understand.
How I have caused the problem is by having two meters. This goes back to the late 1960s when the country had a surplus of electricity at night. Everyone was encouraged to put in night storage heaters, to use up the excess night electricity. To encourage this, the price you paid was cut to about a third of the normal cost. To be fair the company set the hours you could get the power by installing a second meter that worked by a tamperproof timer.
Later it was decided that a single meter with two dials could be installed. There was still an advantage in price, but it was trimmed down a little. Those customers who had the old second meter have fought tooth and claw to keep them due to the cheapest electric on this planet. To control these old format meters, the timers were removed and they are now controlled by a radio signal. The companies can choose when they give you the power, this makes the system only suitable for night storage heaters and emersion tanks.
Apparently over a year ago, my bill supply company, when they were changing over computers forgot to tell the big beastie, that I have a great deal on a restrictive tariff. My rate went up from just over 2p per unit to almost 10p per unit. I sort of voiced my opinion, later in full Anglo Saxon. After not getting anywhere after six months, they said they would look into it. Seems its difficult to get a computer to process an obsolete tariff. I do not have Economy Seven I have a Restrictive Tariff. Most staff have never heard of it.
If there is a bonus, Ive found a way of annoying all these telephone sales persons who ask you to change to their company. All I ask is can they quote me a rate for a Restrictive Tariff. Normally after ten minutes they apologise and say they dont offer that rate. Ive done my good deed for the day, in the time they have spent trying to sell me something, they have not been annoying anyone else. Only one company did offer to give me a quote the original electricity supplier who reads the meter. I might change soon.
Most families during the 20th century kept a family photograph album, the ones of the early 1900s were elaborate albums, with fixed spaces for either cabinet or carte de viste size photos. In the 1920s with photographs ranging in size, albums were often of heavy weight black paper and the photographs affixed in with small gummed corners, hopefully the information about the photo was either written on the back of the photo or in the actual album. Nothing much changed until the early 1980s when the self adhesive album with its clear plastic leaf consigned the photo corner to almost oblivion, the selling part of this new style album would be that you could move your photos around at will. In reality, the glue holding the photograph seeped through the photo and welded the photo to the album. As an added good measure the plastic film covering the photograph had enough chemicals to change the colour of the photo or as an alternative fused itself to the surface. Many photographs of the 1970s to 1990s will not survive another 50 years.
For the 21st century, the traditional photograph album has gone for good. Photographs are now stored on computer hard drives, shiny round miniature record like objects or chips. Very few of the current photographs will be around in 50 years. For many, what does it matter what their great grandparents looked like or did on holiday. When they inherit the family photograph album there are three main recipients, the bin, the local auction or eBay. At least with the last two recipients there is a chance that the photographs will survive.
It might be an idea to get a promise from your grandchildren that they will look after the family possessions. If you dont get a promise, get rid of them now, it does not really matter which, the photos could be sold off to those that collect such treasures, or the grandchildren sold into slavery. In either case you will have some money to spend on yourself.
SAVED FOR POSTERITY
I was recently given a photograph album to display for posterity. The internet, might seem an odd way of preserving photographs, but once out there, they can be viewed and copied by anyone that cares to look at them.
To many the album would be of little interest, even the family that had the album found there was little family history there, but the great niece of the lady that started the album, thought it worth saving.
The album started in the 1920s and ended in 1965 with the ladies retirement photograph. The unusual subject was life in a Childrens Home. Run by the same organisation of the Home that I stayed in, this album featured one Home that looked after disabled children. Few of the photos were posed in any way, they were just fleeting moments on life in care. Some of the children seemed to keep in touch as there was a group of her boys that she had looked after in the 1930s and 1940s who came to her retirement, and also entries as late as 1991 of an old boy who was still enjoying life.
In the normal way, most of the staff in the Childrens Homes kept photograph albums. It was a memento to treasure and relive memories on retirement. Sadly on their death, most families threw these away, as they had little family connection. But one album out of a thousand has been saved.
In todays society, a care worker or teacher collecting photographs of their children might be viewed with suspicion, the minimum they could expect would be loss of their job, a prison term and banned from contact with children forever.
As to the staff that looked after me, and others of my time, in the album there was one group photo of all the happy staff. The Sisters did look smart when they wore their uniforms. Plain blue coat, dark blue tunic and skirt, blue or grey scarf, hats should be of the uniform type, gloves should be worn with the uniform, these should be grey, navy or white.
As to the photo it is the Sister that looked after me. Sister Pearl started her training at an NCH Junior Boys Approved School at Congleton in 1943 and moved in 1945 to the Harpenden NCH. By 1965 when she started looking after me at the age of 8, she had gained plenty of experience in looking after naughty little boys.
STOLEN AND RECOVERED
At one of the NCH branches, there was a heavy brass sign Ryalls Court National Childrens Home. I wonder who removed the sign? Weighing 1kg, it must have given hours of pleasure to the children that had to polish it. Something more for the collection.
The postage costs on large thick items will go up in price from the September sale. We will not be following the Post Office suggestion of folding the item to fit into a smaller lower cost package; it would only end in tears.
My holiday was on 1st July. That was why last months sale was on the 8th. . You had good warning, but a few turned up on the 1st and found the building locked up. The reason I was on my holidays. This was the first one since 2002, that is excluding some Sundays, and yes I do work Christmas Day as there is a catalogue to get ready.
London was the destination. For luxury I travelled by rail in what is now called Standard Class, personally I would get rid of the affluent First Class and let the M.P.s, Police Officials, High Court Judges see what the real world is like.
Air conditioned luxury, well almost, it was hot and there was some cool air coming into the carriage, but there was a rattling sound from somewhere behind the plastic panelling first annoying item of the day. Why not design a little lever that can direct the cool air to where you want it, better still give us back windows that open.
The part of the carriage I picked was of the restricted type, which are to be found on many South West Trains and have about 5% of the seating restricted. Ideally they are for the class of passenger that falls into the grumpy old fogy group.
A couple of little items are banned in these restricted carriages and notices showing the items that are not permitted are on the windows and walls through the small area of the carriage. Mobile phones and headphones are allowed in the other 95% of the train. There is also a request for SILENCE.
Why does the average young person under the age of thirty, not understand this simple sign. Made especially for these morons and the odd foreigner, as well as spelling it out in easy to understand words, the banned items are shown in pictures.
Within half an hour a young lady started gabbling on her mobile phone. I went over and politely asked her to stop using it. For the rest of the journey, it kept being played with and the odd yakking period was made. Had I not been on my way up to London and not wanted to be detained by the Railway Police over harassing this poor defenceless young female, the least I would have liked to do was place the phone outside the compartment door. I now know why they dont have windows that open, oh, it would be so tempting.
Arrived in London and found the area around Waterloo still a building site. They have had since 1952 to get it sorted and it still is a mess. I want my nice concrete Festival playground back, they took it away from me in the early 1960s. I still regard myself as a Londoner even having spent the last 34 years down in deepest Dorset. Its the growing up years that count in my mind.
There were several activities I could take part in. The hunt for the pub with the biggest TV set and the cheapest beer, many thousands were on this hunt, the most crucial match in the World cup was being played today. I could have gone and joined the Gay Pride march and organised events. I think if Id worn my breeches and riding boots I would have been accepted. There was the odd anti-establishment event also on, but even that did not suit me. Instead I went to a reunion of ex-inmates from NCH Childrens Homes that was organised at their main headquarters. The average age of the attendees was about sixty, but a few were clearly in their eighties.
Most of the topics were on the youth of today and how out of control they were, many it seemed would like to punish the youth of today as they were as young children whilst in care. Seems thumping, slipperings and canings are not permitted today. Happy and unhappy memories were discussed by all, and time was spent working out which was the coldest and bleakest Home to be placed in.It appeared that Edgworth on the Lancashire Moors was voted top in that league. Treated to a buffet lunch and later an afternoon strawberry cream tea, everyone enjoyed themselves apart from the very hot weather.
At the end of the event I went in search of an old pal, due to him working today I arranged to meet him near his work.
Parts of the Northern Line were never my stomping ground as a child, I was more the Bakerloo child. Why my friend is never able to give precise directions I never will understand. Like meeting up with him after swimming forty years ago, again we missed each other, and I wasted over an hour traipsing the area of Camden Lock to Kentish Town and back in the direction of Camden Town.
Eventually I met up with him, just as he was about to start his evening shift in the restaurant where he works, I bet forty years ago he could never have dreamt that he would spend his time cooking goat. Almost the same as forty years ago, I never thought I might have the intelligence to work a computer let alone afford one.
Soon it was heading back to Waterloo, why on this day did they have to close half the Northern line for repairs. The Saturday shoppers were added to by the end of the Gay Pride March and a number of young males in total shock. Had one thrown themselves onto the live rail, it would have been copied by every other young male in the vicinity, who were just about to work out how they could get paralytic, so they would not remember the last hour of football for over a week.
Insults were made to every person wearing normal clothes, but the joke was really on those wearing tight PVC and other suggestive garb, that resulted in them taking on the appearance and features of a boil-in-the-bag ready meal. I even resorted to putting a pound in a machine on the underground for a cold bottle of sugar free coke, to guzzle in front of these creatures.
A snack before catching the train back at Waterloo, should have been an easy event. I went to the fast food outlet of the Burger King, what I ordered apparently had to be hand killed and cooked especially for me. After ten minutes I was given a complementary bottle of orange squash. I did miss the train, but there was another in a few minutes. I think the sign above the take away was misspelled there should have been a g rather than an r in the first word.
It was luck that I managed to sit again in the anti-moron carriage. However two elderly people decided to have a word guessing and spelling game, one of the pair was a bit Mutt & Jeff, so most things had to be said either twice or extra loud. They might have been poorly sighted and illiterate as well as within a few inches of them was the sign Sushhh. The journey was completed by a foreigner yakking in his own language into his mobile so I cold not understand how pathetic his conversation was. A young girl further up the carriage telling everyone and the person on her mobile that she was failing all her exams. Two drunken young men that now realised that they could have done better than the entire English team, and a railway (ticket collector-conductor-guard) that had just about enough of today, was almost dreaming of bed.
The luxury of returning to sleepy old Dorset, where there are more muggings, drunks and anti-social acts within half a mile where I live, than anywhere else on the South coast, bliss. Oh well thats another holiday over, perhaps in four years time I might have another, but on the other hand, perhaps I wont.
REMEMBER THE SALE IS ON THE 8th JULY
Please do not turn up on the first Saturday, as there is not a sale on that day, nor will there be any viewing.
I am going to have a days holiday, the last one was in 2002, so I think I deserve another.
SPECIAL OFFER FOR AUGUST
Any item that you offer in the August sale that makes over £100 will be at nil % commission, all you will pay is the £2.36 lotting fee. So now will be the time to drag out that extra special diamond encrusted ring, the original manuscript to Midsummers Nights Dream, the wheel off the Graf Spee, or even a nice album of topo postcards.
Often in daily newspapers one finds a manufactures recall notice, often phrased in only a slightly terrifying way as not to scare the punters, mentioning that one of its products does not really come up to its high standards, and could any goods from that batch be returned. Often the actual reason will not be mentioned. Telling customers that a cow was minced up in the rice pudding vat or that we put beef in the vegetable burgers, they think will lose them customers.
This might be changing, at last one business has been honest over the product it is recalling and the reason.
ASDA Carbon Steel Hand Axe
Our ASDA brand carbon steel hand axe would be fantastic apart from the fact that the head can come detached from the handle. Quite clearly this is not on, so weve decided that you kneed to know. Thankfully no one has been hurt. If youve bought one, then could you please bring it back. In return we will of course give you your money back you dont even need your receipt. Weve had a word with the buyer to make sure this doesnt happen again. It goes without saying, were very sorry indeed.
The honest truth, so wonderful from a big organisation, the only real complaint might be from the local axe murderer, who has had to go further a field for his supplies.
PACKETS OF ILLEGAL SUBSTANCES FROM HOLLAND
It appears that some of our customers are purchasing packets of items over the internet and having them sent to England.
The Royal Mail have asked them to stop as they are losing many thousands of pounds each week. In the past these packets were despatched in this country for English customers, the Royal Mail objected and the trade moved to Holland.
The highly damaging substance - English postage stamps that have not been cancelled and that have been washed off the envelopes so that they can be used again. Available from Holland at half normal price. So for every tenner you send to Holland the Royal Mail lose £20. The solution is the Royal Mail should employ people to properly cancel the stamps in the first place.
THE SONY TV ADVERT
This originally showed a large number of coloured balls running down a hill to promote a new Sony TV set. A later rip off advert was made to promote a fruit product, using fruit rolling down a hill.
Our local idiots have copied this; they seem to have acquired two cases of limes, from a nearby supermarket or its skip, they dont normally bother nicking cases of fruit, they normally walk away with full boxes of Whisky.
For a short while the Dalkeith Lane was rolling with limes, these went into Old Christchurch Rd. and amazed local shoppers, a few were lobbed at my building, it makes a difference than the normal stoning I get. Ok I kept some of the good ones, seems a shame to waste good fruit. If the supermarket threw them out, it was that they were not hard and bright green, the ones I got were just at their best.
WHY COULDNT THEY LOSE THE MATCH.
I was disappointed in the result of the England v Sweden match. A draw meant there were no special offers at IKEA. If Sweden won the match, IKEA were going to offer 10 Meatballs for 1p at all its English stores. I was quite looking forward to supper. If England had won the game, IKEA were offering a booby prize of six of their metal folding chairs at 1p each.
If England were to play Germany, I wonder what Aldi and Lidl would offer? If Germany won, Ten bottles of schnapps for 1p, or if England won, up to six toilet rolls at 1p each.
THE JULY SALE
Next months sale will be on 8th July, this is the second Saturday of the month and not our usual first Saturday.
Due to a misunderstanding at Royal Mail a bunch of keys was mislaid. These were keys used to open the local pillar boxes, for a few days there were no collections until the matter was sorted out.
I WAS NOT GIVEN AN ASBO
It should be noted that the ASBO issued to Philip Howard to keep him quiet, was not given to me. The Philip Howard the ASBO was issued to is two years older than me and spends his time harassing passers by with religious matters. The main complainants were not members of the public that have to compete with space on the pavement, but local residents in the area in Westminster, who found his amplified Christian preaching a nuisance.
Like a true Howard, this ASBO issued by Westminster Council has not put him off, , it only covers a small area. The thoughts of Mr Howard are They cant ban me from the whole of London. So coming to an area of London near you between 8am until 9pm will be a man with a powerful megaphone.
If he had not wanted a ban, had he promoted any other religious views other than Christianity, there would never have been a ban. The local police would have bent over backwards and allowed him to have streets closed to traffic and given him protection from interfering councils.
He estimates in the 14 years he has been giving his views 45 million people have passed him. He cant be that offensive having lasted that long.
OUR MISSING STAFF MEMBER
It is with regret that we announce that we no longer have an office cat. Rhythm had been with us for over 12 years.
Old age at around 14 or so brought an end to a happy life. He first came in as a morning visitor looking for a bit of peace and quiet from a local flat he shared with five other cats and a young child. Settling down on top of the warm laser printer or on top of the cage of budgies he rested until it was time to go home for tea.
At some later point he decided to take up permanent residence and allow his owner full visiting rights. When his owner left the area, he decided on full adoption.
Most of our customers will have fought him at some point for an auction lot that had become a snoozing box. When asked to leave he would give up the box for a few minutes, but on the termination of the viewing, he required the box to be returned to its comfy state.
A NEW SERVICE
With a large number of our buyers and sellers using ebay to buy collectables, we will now be offering a service where we can place your goods on ebay for you.
It has been worked out that out of 100 people that use ebay, only about 20 of these will ever sell goods on ebay, many of these will be full or part time sellers, so the actual number of private sellers on ebay is perhaps only 2%.
The main reason for the low numbers of ebay sellers is the often tedious lengths a seller of a few items has to go through to get the item listed, then deal with the buyer and the sending out of the goods after the sale.
We will now do the entire system for you. Just bring the items into us, or if you live out of the area send them by post. We will do all the descriptions in the same way we handle items in our monthly auctions.
The only difference is that we will now need to know a minimum price you want the item to sell for on ebay. This will be both the starting price and the reserve.
From that point on we will take photographs of the item and add it to the description on ebay. Normally we will offer the item for either 7 or 10 days, but if the item is unsold, we will offer it for a second time.
The cost of our basic service works out around the same price as the total overall cost of our monthly auction sales.
Once the sale is over we will collect the payment from the buyer, despatch the goods and once the buyer has accepted the goods, payment will be made.
With our service we will pay all the listing fees, additional photograph fees, the selling fees and the final Paypal fee.
With the minimum charges that occur with ebay, goods valued under £10 per lot would be best entered in our monthly sales.
To see what we are currently offering please visit ebay.
Our selling name is we-bay-it-com
or for our web page go to http://www.we-bay-it.com
BOYS SHOULD NOT BE SENT TO SCHOOL UNTIL THEY ARE SIX
At last, something I can agree with over the new education ideas. An educational psychologist has recommended that boys should start school lessons when they reach six, and that any schooling they receive before this age should only be based on play activities.
Authorities are now finding that many boys, who start formal lessons in reading and writing from the age of four at school, are now starting to either fall behind or give up on lessons in later years.
I started school at six in the early 1960s, I was a little behind those that had started a year earlier, but I think if I had been forced to sit at a desk from the age of four, I too would have wanted to give up on school work completely. I was lucky in having two extra years of playing at home between the ages of four and six.
The psychologist thinks however, that girls should be given formal lessons at school before the age of six. With boys, putting them in a seat and asking them to sit all day is incompatible with their brains.
DUST AND DIRT STOPS ASTHMA
Parents and doctors over the last five years have become concerned over the number of children who have asthma. Britain is the highest in the league in Europe with cases of childhood asthma.
Scientists have now concluded that it is the lack of dirt and germs that a child comes into contact with in the first few years of life that is the cause in the increased asthma rate.
Britain has become obsessed with the likes of Aggie and her sidekick, over the state of our homes. Families have been coerced into blitzing their houses in a cleaning spree to remove every possible bug that has settled. We are also bombarded with adverts that encourage our young mothers to sterilise every surface a baby or child comes into contact with.
However if they followed the methods developed by Mr Trevius the Polish gentleman who allowed his home and garden to become a well developed plague pit, and enjoyed a very long and happy life. Even the council cleaning team were sorry when he died at a very ripe old age.
Perhaps he did go a bit extreme, but a little bit of dirt and the odd item of food that has gone past its best before date, will not do any real harm.
If we look across the channel, there is a country that has around the same range of people, buildings and lifestyles as we have, but although it is only 30-50 miles away, they have a far lower rate of asthma in children and use far fewer inhalers, could it be the dirt that is protecting them?
I was taught the simply rule that a little bit of mould on bread will not do you much harm, but when the item concerned is crawling faster than you can, then perhaps it has reached its eat by time.
My early years were in the centre of London. Streets were polluted with lead from vehicle emissions, lead was in the paint I chewed on the windows, rain came through the roof, there was no central heating, hot water in the bathroom came from a geyser and any hot water in the kitchen came from the kettle. Heat was not provided by central heating but by either an electric bar heater in the living room or paraffin heaters around the house. Ventilation was either by opening a window or by natural means through the gaps in the floorboards or gaps in the doors and windows. The house was kept clean with polish and soap, with no modern manmade chemicals other than bleach and strong soap.
If I needed further protection, then the amount of strong unfiltered cigarettes that were smoked indoors by the three adults each day, cured any breathing problems I might develop. They went through about 50 80 between them, and not even an inch was left at the end. Although a pin to hold the final bit was not resorted to. The number of ends need to make a small remainder cigarette would have been about 100. My grandfather who could quite happily go through 40 Senior Service each day, lasted until almost his 90th birthday. He might have lasted longer had he made the change from Capstan Extra Strength a little earlier in his life.
One reason for the many illnesses and problems we have in hospitals and the like are down to bugs becoming resistant to the modern methods of cleanliness, a good mix of bleach and soap and most harmful bugs can be kept under control, as to the odd bit of chlorine gas, well open the window.
WHAT IS IN YOUR FOOD
Still with the spreads, Chicken & Liver Pate is 47% liver, next main ingredient Pork Fat (approx 45%). In the Trout and lemon Pate 10% Cod how can they afford to put that much cod in a trout pate? (have you seen the price of cod!). In the tinned pie. Stake & Kidney Pie main ingredient Water.
LONGER VIEWING HOURS
By the request of certain viewers, we will open a little earlier on auction day as an experiment, please see revised viewing times on the front of the catalogue.
WHY WE JOINED THE EEC
There were two reasons back in 1973. The first was to put the cost of stamp collecting up, an ideal way of showing how your investment had grown. Until then the hobby had been more or less tax free unless you purchased luxury stamp albums. The cost of stamp collecting went up by 10% overnight.
The second was that it would make it easier to exchange and sell goods between the member states, without having to bother with customs declarations and the like.
What we did not join the EEC for was to allow a group of goose liver eating, garlic chomping irriots to change our laws.
Meekly over the last thirty odd years, the British government have allowed this group to change our way of life. We joined to exchange goods not to comply with all their meddlesome regulations.
We should now start to change some of their rules.
1. All vehicles will drive on the left (The Romans and Swedes use to do it, so it should not be to difficult for it to be learnt by the rest of Europe.
2. Money, as it appears that most countries that changed to the Euro feel it was a bad move, we will allow them all to change again, but to £.S.D. That should make more jobs in the calculator and adding machine industries.
3. It will be compulsory to eat Black pudding, Spotted dick and Sago on alternate Thursdays.
4. The plant known as Garlic will be banned in any form across Europe.
5. Tony Blair to be made President of Europe for eternity and to be moved to the island of Elba.
Whilst the European governments decide how to implement those five simple rules, they will not have time to bring in other regulations.
NO ITS NOT ME
A few days ago an item in the national press quoted Philip Howard as saying We are going to be criminalized if we try to save a patient, I will risk prison. This was uttered by the leading consultant Philip Howard, rather than me.
TONYS I.D. CARD
A good idea in theory, but useless in practice. Each time a new design is mentioned, more information seems to be added into its content.
We now have biometric readings. To use this information on the card, where all your eye and facial recognition together with your finger prints are stored, you will first have had to have this information taken from you and loaded into a computer.
To check this information, you and your card will have to be scanned; this will then be checked against the data in the computer. If all matches, you will be released as a good citizen of the United Kingdom. If however it fails on one point, and especially if you is black and in a car in Bournemouth, expect to be roughly handled and sprayed with CS gas.
If you took the ID card out of the system, all the same checks could be made without the need to carry any of Tonys expensive tat.
At one stroke, Ive saved the nation £2,000,000,000 or by the time it would come in 750,000,000,000,000. Can I have a Peerage please?
WHAT IS IN YOUR SANDWICH TODAY?
Since an early age one of my favourite foods is fish paste sandwiches. It doesnt take much to please me.
As we did not have a fridge, any jars of spread had to be finished up rather quickly before it went off. Whilst other adults in the family were happy with a bowl of Kelloggs corn flakes in the morning, I often finished the content of the white glass paste jar. Funny now they come in clear glass jars there is less paste.
In those days if you purchased crab spread the most lightly main ingredient was crab, the same went for Anchovy paste and Bloater paste the title of the flavour would be the main ingredient. The only paste I am unable to find nowadays is Mackerel paste.
In todays mad world the title on the jar means little to the main ingredient. For Anchovy Paste its Mackerel 45% and Anchovy 25%, for Bloater Paste its 49% Mackerel and Bloater 22%. Possibly this is due to the shortage of raw bloaters in the Birmingham Bloater fields.
As for crab, well the one thing I did not expect was to find was Full Fat Soft Cheese. These were all by a main leading brand and not one of the cut price brands, I just hate to think whats in those. But Ive found out why there is no Mackerel Paste in the shops, as all the mackerel has been put in the other jars.
Turning to the sweeter things. One brand of jam has the title No Bits on the raspberry it carries the warning This product contains fruit seeds, it better not.
Playing on the Railway
No, not in this area, we have the third rail system in this area. There is no better way in keeping children off railway lines than putting a high voltage through the track. Once one child is killed or badly injured, its quite a time before other local children walk on the railway. In the rest of Europe and the USA they dont seem to mind children, so dont put high voltages in their lines.
As a child at exploring age 8-11 years I was living in Hertfordshire. There was an almost unique railway that we use to visit. Normally it had about two or three trains during the day, by the mid 1960s it had been down graded as a shunting line with most of the work been done at night, only 200 yards from my bedroom, but it was down a cutting and there was not too much noise from the long ash carrying trains.
The Nickey Line or to give it its proper name The Harpenden to Hemel Hempstead Line, should have been closed under Dr Beeching in the 1960s, but as a quirk of fate, it survived. The main reason for this was during a coal shortage in the late 1940s British Railways suspended all passengers services on the line. Some days only half a dozen children were travelling on the morning train, so its suspension was hardly missed. When the coal shortage ended, the service was simply forgotten about.
Until 1968 the main use of the line was taking ash from a power station to the local brickworks, then it became a line with only the ash trains. With few trains and only ordinary lines it became a magnet for children who were normally confined to forty acres of grassland next to the line, the railway was simply an extension to our play area.
In a report in a book on the railway - The book The Harpenden to Hemel Hempstead Railway The Nickey Line by Sue an Geoff Woodward possibly gives the best history of Our Railway line.
Problems arose in this area during the latter days of BR working, when children often tampered with the fireman's call plunger, leaving the signalman in doubt as to the arrival of a train. To overcome this, train crews would telephone the signalman from Redbourn, giving an expected arrival time at the junction, but this was sometimes thwarted by the theft of small lengths of the telephone wires. The only solution was for the train to stop at the signal next to the Childrens Home, whistle loudly and hope to be heard. If the signal went up the driver would proceed, but if not, the fireman had to walk to the junction to inform the signalman of their presence. To avoid this walk trains sometimes crept round the corner against the signal.
Children who were caught on the railway line were caned, this was another method of encouraging children not to play on the railways, but was not as effective as electrocution. Today the rails have been taken up and it has become a public walkway The adults spoil all our fun.
BEST TELEVISION PROGRAMME OVER CHRISTMAS
My personal favourite was James Mays Top Toys. Normally to be found around fast motor cars, James decided to look at toys of the past, and were they all cracked up to be. The answer in the main was NO, those of us in the 1960s seemed to be fobbed off with all sort of junk. The only decent toys were always out of our price range.
James decided he wanted one of these nice toys. On finding that adults who buy these toys of the 1960s just to look at and never to play with them, he wanted to right these wrongs.
Going to a specialised toy auction, he decided to buy a mint & boxed locomotive and tender. He threw away all the original instructions, boxes and all the other packing that these toys come with. Then he set about playing with the toy train on a railway layout.
Good one James, youve done what a lot of auctioneers would love to do with that mint & boxed stuff that passes through their salerooms, play with the toys in the manner they were made for. Coming soon to an auction near you. One model train, blue in colour with a few scratches.
WHATS IN A TIN OF QUALITY STREET
To most people looking at the outside of the tin at Christmas, will show the twelve types of chocolates that are to be found inside. I have tried without success the give away three types that normally lurk in the bottom of the tin, until they are finally thrown away around mid June. I did manage to give away all the Toffee Pennies, but the Toffee Fingers, the Coconut Éclairs and the Malt Toffees still lurk. If you are visiting the auction, please take them away.
What I did not expect to find, were lumps of Yorkie Bar. It appears that Nestlay (phonenetick pronunciation of what we use to call Nestlé ), (seems that splodge above the final e makes it sound like an English ay - bloody foreigners) are adding this chocolate piece to the tin, as it was thought that customers would like a solid chocolate piece in their tin of sweets
No, we dont. If were buying a tin of luxury sweets, we dont want to find them weighed down with lumps of chocolate. The firm gave a phone number for you to ring to tell them which your favourite sweet was. Most I think will be phoning about the Sexist lump in the tins.
P.S. The é is alt 130 on the keyboard for lower case and alt 144 for upper case, should you ever need it.
SPY IN THE SKY
What were you doing last summer? Chance was, that if you were in a city or major town, you will have been spied on by Google and his friends.
If you go onto the Google home page on your computer, and then visit the Google Earth page. You will be able to view the satellite image of where you live and work and have fun! Some Northern parts of the land and small villages are not covered yet, but in time, they will.
The quality of the images is up to the military standard of a few years ago. If the council want to spy on you and your home, they can now do so from the comfort of their chair. The quality of the images is so good, that the number of bags of rubbish that are by your dustbin can be counted. Coming next week to your home the bill for your excess rubbish.
Next year it is hoped that the X-Ray version will be released, then they will be able to see inside your home.
Stop that Mr Rivlit, of No. 642 Acacia Avenue, Putney. Didnt you know it was against the law to hit your child with a wet lettuce leaf?
ROYAL MAIL MAKE ANOTHER BALLS UP
Next August our mail is going to be priced by the thickness if the item. The Royal Mail sent out width devices to all business that have a high turn over of mail. (It was a lump of card with two slits cut in it).
If the piece of mail is 5mm or less in thickness and can fit through the thin slot easily, it will be classed as a letter, if it does not go through the slot, but would go through the 25mm slot it is a large letter and will cost more, if it does not go through the 25mm slot, its called a packet (or expensive to you and me).
A couple of weeks later, the Royal Mail sent out new versions, it appeared that many of the slots were cut with 6mm gaps allowing a 5mm letter to go through easily. Now the slot is 5mm exactly, a letter that is 5mm in thickness will not easily go through a 5mm slot, more money for the Post Office.
If you want to add more chaos in August, then the size of the Letter, Large Letter or Packet, will also come into the costing of sending the item of mail.
By Christmas, the system might work, but imaging queuing behind the odd granny trying to send the oversize thick Christmas card to her grandson in Scotland. Its going to end in tears.
FATHER CHRISTMAS IS COMING TO FRIGHTEN THE CHILDREN
As part of Nanny State Britain, it has just been announced to teachers that they need to protect their children from Father Christmas. It is not as you might first think a warning about men dressing up as Father Christmas that might have paedophilic ideas, but the Father Christmas that might be visiting the school to see the children.
The new rules that have been advised. No competitive games, so pass the parcel is out, it might upset any child that does not get a prize, half the fun with this game was finding ways to cheat, if you had the parcel and could not feel an object under the first layer of paper, pass it on quickly, it would soon come round again. If you could feel a present, then drop or fumble with the parcel allowing you to get the prize. Now as to musical chairs, well this was a non starter under Health and Safety rules, a child moving a chair, no none of that could be permitted. So no Christmas party games this year at school.
The main let down for the children however is the thought that, young children might be frightened of Father Christmas, they should be place near to exits on his arrival. Also trips to the pantomime need similar planning as children might be afraid of certain characters that are on the stage.
If ever there was a group to cause trouble then these teachers are simply trying to make everything so bland and safe, that the only activity that children will be able to do will be to sit in front of a television watching cartoons and play video games.
One question do they still make Johnny Seven Guns? with all those multiple objects that can be fired, and then lost around the house and garden about half an hour after opening the wondrous box. No I did not get one for Christmas, but I know two friends that did.
I WAS AFRAID OF FATHER CHRISTMAS
To be honest, I was not really afraid, it was more hatred for the Father Christmas that handed me some toys at the age of eight.
From the age of six, I think I had twigged on that perhaps Father Christmas was not as real as I had imagined from the previous year. Having moved to a remote location, although there was plenty of room for Father Christmas to land his sleigh, my thoughts were that perhaps he did not know my new address. It was my mother putting out mince pies and a glass of sherry out that gave the game away. I was up early the presents were there but the food and drink was untouched. The excuse I was given was that perhaps Father Christmas had already eaten too many.
At the age of seven I was at a boarding school for boys that need to be controlled. We all knew that Father Christmas did not visit naughty boys. The school provided our presents. I left that school after about a month, apparently I had not been naughty enough to stay.
At the age of eight, I was again away from my mother for Christmas and the holidays, this was the year that I lost all faith in that gentleman in the red cloak.
An incident when a few of us were caught misbehaving ended with us been given the cane. A few days later the person who had given us all the cane was dressed up as Father Christmas and giving us all presents. He even asked us had we all been good this year.
I would love to have had one of the photos from the party that year, all I can find is one from a different date, showing Father Christmas and the device he uses to keep Rudolph and his friends on schedule and to frighten small boys in to being good.
EUROPEAN HUT DWELLERS CONQUER BOURNEMOUTH
As part of our entente cordiale with Europe, Bournemouth Council has once again invited a group of foreigners to set up their wares in the centre of Bournemouth. Known as a German Market or to the local shopkeepers as the Hut Dwellers, these unfortunate people from Germany and other parts of Europe were under the impression that Bournemouth was a thriving market place. It is but only between 10pm & 2am, when our drunken nightlife are too pissed to realise the prices they are being charged for purchases.
During the cold light of day when ordinary members of the public decide it is reasonably safe to venture out into the town centre, things can look a little different.
The huts contain offerings that the European folk think we might be interested in, a little bit of market research and the European products the average Brit want, normally come in plain wrappers and are sent either by post from Denmark or are supplied from under the counter. Personally I have my eye on Samantha, the blurb goes a luxury playmate who is 5ft 6in and will give hours of pleasure. Father Christmas are you listening? I bet that daft old coot will give me some colouring books.
When I went to visit him, (see illustration top of page) he gave me a small set of coloured pencils and told me I had to wait until Christmas morning to see what he brings. Im not that daft if he gives me coloured pencils now, I know its going to be a colouring book. O.K. next year for Samantha please Father Christmas.
The European folk are selling all manner of Christmas ornaments and other Christmassy things, not as tasteless as some American ideas, but a few are what the average English person will want to display in their house (for cultural fairness I must not insult those person in Wales and Scotland who wish to display such items).
The local Bournemouth residents merely politely gaze at the items on offer without comment to the vendors in the little wooden huts that stretch from one side of town to another. In the square they do stop, after all the beer chalet and its security guards do seem a little familiar.
A few stop to see what is cooking. There are sausages, but to us they are not real sausages, these things cost £2 -£3 each. The most off putting matter is that they are made almost entirely of meat. Not something that is a favourite taste to the English, our sausages have to be made with almost 60% of bread and other filling material and the 32% which is the meat content, is not meat as one would know it but the remains of the pig once the good meat has been sold off. If only the Germans would realise that all we want is sh** in our sausages, not their high real meat content.
If the European Hut Dwellers find it is difficult to sell items to us, it is not the language barrier, a grunt between customer and seller is more or less the same in any language. It is the way things are priced, instead of the pound sign followed by a figure eg £2, these folk seem to put commas and other strange symbols onto the price card, the other matter is their 1, 4, and 7, the figures on their cards do seem to be of different values to our numbers, but its fine to argue when they give us the change. For most, the money in the town centre will go into Mc Donalds and Argos.
See you next year Hut Dwellers!
MY CHRISTMAS PRESENTS ON EBAY
I thought about purchasing a couple of items for myself from ebay. Two simple things that would not cost very much.
No.1. 1972 Christmas Radio Times, with all the repeats, I thought it would be up to date for this Christmas, Those persons who have a copy of this edition, might be able to work out my desire for this particular edition. Now I know a few things do make daft money on ebay, but £23.96 for a 1972 Radio Times, get a life.
No.2. Pair of rubber riding boots, I simply wanted something to walk across a muddy field to catch the horse, when the creature decides to have a longer playtime. Nothing very special, no gold braid or anything like that. They were not even new and according to the description on ebay some cracking of the rubber around the creases but fine around the foot I put in what I thought was a fair price, final price to the winner £32 plus postage. I would hope for a new pair for that price, but as we know ebay is a mad idea, fancy bidding at an auction when you have not seen the goods, now I wonder if there is a business idea in there somewhere.
WHEN BOURNEMOUTH WENT QUIET
Bournemouth town centre celebrated two minutes of silence on Remembrance Day. 11 am on the 11th day of the 11th month to commemorate the fallen in the two wars,
The parades and other groups started to form around 10am, perhaps it was not the best time for the contractors to start to erect the German Market in the town centre. Two minutes of silence was however observed, before the hammering started again.
Bournemouths quiet time was the following Tuesday morning, when a scrap man in a neighbouring town decided to have a bonfire under the main electricity pylon that carries the entire power supply into Bournemouth and the surrounding area.
It was not just a few lights that went out, but the entire power system to the town. For the first half hour, there was the usual chaos as the burglar alarms and the lift alarms sounded, when their batteries ran down, the town started to become silent. The hum of the air conditioning units were silent, the bleeps of the scanning units of the tills had gone quiet, life as we knew it stopped. Due to health and safety regulations most shops closed, there was none of the service by candle light that we experienced in the good old 1970s.
Today most shops are not able to do business without power, how can you read a bar code by candle light or torch power, a couple of large town centre shops now have their own generators so some normal life could continue.
For us it was one day less of describing lots, the reason that the sale is shorter than last month.
When the electricity helpline announced that there would be no hope of any power for several hours, most workers went home. The normal daily traffic jam at Cemetery Junction ran very smoothly without traffic lights, and Bournemouth returned to its quiet sedate life of the early 1900s.
Rotating power cuts occurred during the day and into the evening, as the local power company rushed emergency generators to supplement the trickle of power entering from other lines. Within two days, Bournemouth was back to normal and the noise and hubbub of this once quiet town rules once more.
Monday morning, another short power cut. Local traders are eying the large generator that the Hut Dwellers have, could a few more leads be attached to the beastie?
MORE SCHOOLS NEEDED IN BOURNEMOUTH
At an emergency meeting on Friday, it was announced that many extra places will be needed in Bournemouth schools in 2010.This was due to a power cut in Bournemouth in November 2005, which caused a large number of Bournemouth residents to return home and go to bed early, or for the few that found shelter in the office stationery cupboard.
The following days also saw an increased turnover in certain medical detection products, followed by increased sales of congratulation cards and shotgun cartridges.
SPOILSPORTS FOR 5th NOVEMBER
One Hampshire council are trying to end the 5th November celebration, by recommending that wood and other material that would normally go onto bonfires on that day, be turned into garden mulch.
Officers from Test Valley Council have even gone as far as printing a leaflet on the matter. Personally, I think the burning of an effigy of Guy Fawkes should end. The burning of council leaders who make stupid rules and the odd social worker would make a far better display on the 5th of November.
I WANNA SEE THE FILM
This might soon be shouted by ten and eleven year old boys, who wish to see the new Harry Potter film. Our British censor department have decided that the film should be given a 12A certificate. Whilst it might be desirable for young children to be protected from films featuring sex scenes and bad language (more than they normally see at school), to give the new film a 12A certificate, means that children under 12 will only be able to see the film if they take an adult in with them. The main worry from Nanny Britain is that someone dies, ah what a shame. (Harry?)
PARENTS OF SUSPENDED CHILDREN TO BE MADE TO STAY AT HOME
Our beloved government once again is out to cause misery in families that suffer from badly behaved children. Their latest idea is that if a child is suspended from school, one of the parents should stay at home and look after the child during the suspension.
Often the parent is on their own, having to take time off work to look after the child, will mean that no money will come into the home result financial problems and even more upset in the home. It the kid leaves the house, the parent is fined, result even less money.
The schools and the government are solely to blame for the matter. If they are not able to control the child in school, the matter should not fall back to the parent, who often has little method of controlling her thirteen to seventeen hulking great son.
The solutions for the parent: take the child back to the school and handcuff one of his arms to the school fence, the child would then be suspended at school, not from school.
Tell the child if he is naughty, he will be taken to the local council education office and given to them. Bring out the Social Workers as you have now upset the child through fear, they will now take your child away problem solved, the parent can stay at work.
The solution for the schools and the government, bring back the cane in schools.
On Sunday on ebay, a genuine ILEA (Inner London Education Authority) Senior School Cane of 1970 (34) went for £72 to a stamp collector. Now had it been a genuine ILEA junior school cane from 1965 (28-30), I might have been in with a bid. Like the buyer, he probably wanted a souvenir from childhood.
Went in on Sunday to get the catalogue ready, and found four persons waiting on the doorstep. Not regular customers eager to be first to get the catalogue, but our local alcoholics sheltering on my doorstep from the light drizzle.
Already half cut, trying to make them understand that I wanted to get inside the door was difficult, eventually I got inside. Soon three of Bournemouths finest boys in blue arrived to break up the party, and I could once again leave the building.
DOES CHEESE GIVE YOU NIGHTMARES?
Another of those studies on matters we have all thought about, has now been completed,
200 people were given 20g of cheese before going to bed, to see if it caused nightmares.
The result of the test was that no nightmares were reported.
Im not surprised 20g of cheese, its not even enough to bait a mouse trap. Now 100g of best farmhouse cheddar, and you might be talking bad dreams, 150g should give a reasonable nightmare.
The testers tried different types of cheese. Stilton caused Crazy dreams, but it appears that Red Leicester caused the victims to have nostalgic dreams of their childhood.
As I believed all along, eating cheese does give you nightmares, so Red Leicester is off the night menu for me. Most of my childhood was one long nightmare.
For those who were my friends, go on, have some cheese. Dream about your childhood, if its a nightmare, I should be in there somewhere.
WHAT GOES ON WHEN WE ARE CLOSED.
Although I close the door at 3pm, often I am still working. It is interesting to see what exactly goes on outside our door and in the surrounding yard. The wonder of modern surveillance cameras and a video recorder, can bring a whole new eye on the world.
Between three and five its often the odd office worker from the local building sheltering from the elements, while they have their final fag break of the day.
Mothers often bring their young children up to pee against the wall. The mother and baby unit just up the steps in the car park, is of course too far to go. The training of their child in this way does help them in later life when they are out at nightclubs, fond memories must remain in their minds, as they now return when grown up and now pee higher up the wall.
Around 6pm, the local dossers and other riff raff turn up. All the local bags of rubbish are now searched for food that has been thrown out by the local take-a-ways. A few are very clean and put all the rubbish away after selecting their juicy finds, others just leave the rubbish to blow around until I pick it up the following morning.
At 7pm, we get the youngsters who have managed to find one of their group that passes for eighteen, to buy a few cans of larger and a few Alco-pops, these are consumed for the next hour, until it is possible for them to enter the night clubs and other events in a half-cut, but happy mood.
At 10pm we start an hour of fornication and drug taking. To be fair, the groups do tend to have their own private periods and seldom clash over quiet areas to practice their fun.
From 11pm to 3am we have a selection of the lost, who think somewhere around here is a car park, but for some reason their car does not seem to be here. Then we get they now grown up children that need to empty their bladders. Bournemouth Council having demolished most of the public lavatories or have closed any remaining in use at 7pm, now we often have the fun of watching them actually falling over in surprise, when the nearby security light, from a few nearby flats turns its self on without warning.
The 3am to 7am crowd are the ones with nowhere to sleep, a quiet alley, two bottles of cheap sherry or cider and they are happy.
The police occasionally visit, but as there are often not too many illegal matters going on, all are left to their own devices, after all, what would they do with any of our visitors if the did arrest them.
At 7.10 am I start to clear up the mess from the night before.
THE EXAM RESULTS ARE OUT
At the moment the A Level and GCSE results are starting to get pulled out of their envelopes. Each year the comments are made that as more students are getting better grades, the examinations must be getting easier. This years excuse for the better grades is that the teaching methods are improving.
For those of us who fall into the category of Grumpy Old Men I will not give the reply one would get. My only comment would be is that if you took away the course work that some of the grade marks s are based on, dispose of the calculators and the computers. Let us see the results, or to make it fair give all those who have top GCSE grades and all the A level group, a copy of the 11 Plus exam paper for 1965 and see how many would be fit for a grammar school education.
To find the square root of 42 there is a very easy way. You pick up your log book, turn to the page for square roots, follow the column down to the number 42, read across the result and you get 6.481. That is if you are using four figure logs, now you dont want to boast that you like five figure logs do you. Should you want the square root of 42.7 then it gets a little more complicated your finger has to move across to the next column where you get 6.535. For those of you with an electronic calculator that shows a different result, my final question is - Do you really need to know the square root of 42.7?
Oh how nice it must be to get a good exam result in Sociology, Computer Studies and some of the more exotic title. Unless you are going into those specialist fields, dont be surprised if when you finally leave university with that nice debt hanging round your neck, the potential employer just bins your C.V. Due to the fact that he needs someone with a reasonable English and Maths result who is willing to start at the lower end of the company and work their way up steadily through the company.
The potential school leaver for working at this auction, would not need to have an ology as an A level, they would not need a high grade result in Media Studies nor would they have needed to have done and Arts and Antique course, all the C.V.s in that form go straight in the bin or are used to mop up the spilt coffee.
What I am waiting for is the C.V. that admits that the person left school as soon as they reached school leaving age, have a couple of average GCSE results in English and Maths, admit to have been excluded from school as they were bored with the place and the teachers, and know the Eleven Times table up to twelve, also to have some interest in collecting.
The rubbish on the floor awaits, once you have mastered that task, we can then see if the auction line of work is really for you. Its a case of start at the bottom and work up, and no the starting salary is not £15,000.
BRIGHTON IS CLOSED
Our sympathy goes out to all those businesses and residents of Brighton due to the undesirable visitors that they are getting for their holiday. If you do get close enough to any of them, please tell them that the people of Bournemouth dont want them next year, go find a safe spot in the middle of Salisbury Plain for your conference.
THE DRUG BARON
Going into my local chemist last week, I received the third degree questioning over the product I wanted to buy. All I wanted was a packet of pills that can be purchased over the counter without a prescription for the sum of 75p (slightly cheaper if you go to a supermarket etc).
In the past you could buy 100 tablets for around 40p. Nanny Blair now thinks the 99.9% of people buying this product might want to injure themselves. Tony, if we want to kill ourselves we will visit London and Brighton and allow some of your trigger happy louts do it for us rather than spend out 40p.
The questions from the counter staff. Are they for me? Have I used them before? My reply might have been: No, I hope those pills are new. That might get me thought of as a bit of a nutter. I no longer wish to be thought of as a bit of a nutter, Ive gone all the way. Next question, are they for anyone under sixteen? My reply to that should have been: I was taking four at the time and sixteen a day when I was eleven, and Im still standing. Final question: Has your doctor told you they are all right to take with any medicine you are taking? Now I know if you are taking Warferin and similar products, you should not take this item, all those instructions are printed on the packet.
Come on, all I want is a packet of ******** Aspirin.
LISTS, LISTS and LISTS
At the moment there seems to be a fascination on the television and in the newspapers on lists.
The 100 best films, the 100 best records, the 100 best childrens programmes. In a way, it has been an easy and cheap method of filling the screen. The only costs it seems are the royalties on a batch of old programmes, an out of work actor who will now work for peanuts, and a small studio where the public will almost pay to get in.
The lists are easy to make up, who is going to prove that you did not survey a million people to get your results. All you need is to pick about ten very different films that had once been popular and to put them near the top of the list. With this 90% of the viewing audience will be able to agree that other people have the same tastes as they do. Fill the other 90 slots with anything you can get your hands on. This is an easy way to make programme or fill pages in a national newspaper.
Recently children seem to have been targeted as the quarry of the list makers. One of the most recent lists was on films children should see before they reach fourteen years of age. Some of the list was rather elitist and highbrow, but I had to agree many were my choice of film.
If I was different as a child, I would much prefer to pay to go to a cinema that might be showing a black & white subtitled French film, to all my friends, who were in a main cinema watching the latest cowboy film, but I was odd.
The choice of films on the list that I think a child should see were (in alphabetical order) Bicycle Thieves, Kes, Monsieur Hulots Holiday, My Life as a Dog, Night of the Hunter, Playtime, Red Balloon, Whistle Down the Wind.
The odd few films I thought I could be added to the list on an uncle theme would be: Mon Uncle, Lets Uncle Kill Uncle, The Uncle, and finally Man From Uncle, none of which have any connection other than having the word uncle in the title. Most of the films in the original list could be seen by children of today, but the bribes to get them into the cinema would have to be high.
AN OTHER LIST
This time children were again targeted, it was suggested on things children should do before they reached the age of ten, at both play and at school. Many seemed a bit too homogenised, so that they might cater for both boys and girls; there seemed no things that were aimed at one particular sex.
I have a feeling that it might have been copied from an American List as one of the main things to do was to make a snow angle. This seems to be a totally American idea, other than our children copying it from a film they might have seen, I cant see many British parents having passed this idea down to a younger generation. If you dont know what a snow angel is, well its when a child lies down in the snow on their back, and moves their arms and legs in the snow as far as they can. When they vacate the area, apparently it leaves the image of an angel. I can see two problems in this been applied to England, the first is that due to global warming there is not enough snow and the second is that leaving images of an angel might upset some minority religion, allowing the parent to be arrested for racial hatred and the child placed in care. As a child the only way of leaving a mark in the snow for us boys, was to see who could complete the most letters of their name in the snow by peeing.
I would now like to list my twelve things that I think a boy should have done by the age of ten.
At Play: (1) Have climbed a tree to the height of at least thirty feet. (2) Have stolen a bar of chocolate from a sweet shop. (3) Have put a coin on the railway line and allowed a train to squash it. (4) Have put your ear to the railway line shortly before the express train comes, to see if you can hear it coming (note the two previous items should not have been attempted if you live in an area where the third rail applies). (5) Have walked along the parapet of a bridge or viaduct where the drop is at least a hundred feet.
At school: (6) Have caused someones nose to bleed. (7) Have pulled a girls pigtails. (8) Have placed a thumb tack on a seat before someone sits down, (9) Have walked across a polished floor with muddy wellingtons. (10) Have thrown up during lunch. (11) Be capable of the most evil thoughts about putting the teacher on a bonfire normally due to the teachers act of refusing you permission to visit the lavatory or the like. (12) Have found a reusable excuse for not handing in homework, and possibly the final one that might not be currently applicable (13) When waiting in line to be caned, not to flinch when the boy next to you is receiving his dose.
There might have been a good reason why I attended twelve different schools between the ages of six and sixteen, but I cant put my finger on it.
THE WRONG TYPE OF GLOBAL WARMING
A local railway company are finding that all air conditioning units in the trains, do not appear to be working very well, and that as a result the carriages are becoming too hot.
The train company blame this on two matters. When the trains stop at the stations, the doors open allowing warm air to enter the carriages, the other is that hot passengers are getting onto the trains. It appears that the air conditioning units fitted to the carriages were never intended to cater for such matters. Several million pounds will now have to be spent, up rating the air conditioning units.
Personally, I could solve the problem once and for all, and get all future expense of air conditioning costs down to zero. (1) Rip out the air conditioning units, (2) Put in new windows that open.
WHAT TO DO ON 2nd JULY
For a few that will read this page, the main event will be to come to the auction. Others will have either viewed the lots on previous days or have made a guess at an amount near to our estimate and have sent in their bids. On that day, either cutting the grass or simply watching it grow will be the main event of the day.
Personally, I could have found better things to do on that day than come to the auction, but as it seems that no one else knows how to use the credit card machine, I suppose I had better turn up. There is a school reunion I could have gone to on this day. Who knows, there might be others from almost forty years ago.
Just think, those of us who were fast quick children are now reduced to merely thinking about speed if it involves our two legs. Some of course will still be fit and very active, but a stuffy reunion, where everyone will be on their best behaviour, will not be events they would turn up to.
One friend of my age, who lives near to where the reunion will take place, will not be going. Events like that are not in anyway of interest, why relive the past seems to be his motto, live for tomorrow seems to be his main interest in life.
When we left school, I never dreamt that I would be working in an auction; he possibly never thought that cooking goat, would be what his main point in life would turn out to be. Others from our time will probably have had a very different style of life to how we originally envisaged.
It would be nice if we could get together at some time to find out how we all got on, a reunion at some point might be a good idea.
CHINA STILL WANTS ROVER
This apparently is still an on going matter, not as most expect, the company that made the Rover and MG cars, but the actual cars themselves.
What the Chinese have in mind, are our old worn out Rovers. There is plenty of good quality steel in these cars, when melted down; one of our old cars can make at least two modern cars.
In the past when you wanted to get rid of an old car, you had to plead with a scrap man to take it away, now in some cases they will actually pay you for an old scrap car.
I believe in recycling cars, not in the normal way of melting them down to make a new car, but by starting with a sound base unit, when a part wears off through rust or damage, to find another car to use as a donor to provide the part. With older Rovers, every part unbolts, other than the main base unit there are no welded parts.
It came the time to get rid of another shell of a car that I had used for spare parts. The scrap man was so eager to come for the beast, that I could choose the time it was most convenient for me to have the shell collected.
If there was a bonus for him, the bonnet and boot are made out of aluminium, when that gets to China, not only will they be able to make two new cars, but also a thousand cans for soft drink. Which shows Rover is still a viable proposition for the Chinese.
If you are a parent, and are worried about your children downloading The Frog ring tone. Just tell them that instead of it sounding like a moped engine, it sounds like a Lada car, and they will not think it as a cool thing to have.
If you missed the original adverts on the television, where the frog still had a small dangly thing, coming down from his lower middle. The uncensored advertisements are still running on the German television stations. He has nothing to boast about.
CASH IN THE ATTIC
The episode featuring Dalkeith Auctions has now been aired. The programme was shown on Thursday 19th May, so if you were not watching at 11.45am, you missed it. There will be future repeats at some point on BBC1 plus showings in the following years 2007, 2009, 2010 and 2030 on the various Free and Satellite channels.
An assortment of our buyers, were shown bidding during the sale. We will provide written excuses to those male stamp collectors who were shown in the programme bidding on pictures of females. This was done as an editing technique, and no way should imply that those collectors regularly attend to purchase such items. Even the cat was in on the act, how many other auctions have a cat in the viewing room?
Often on the television, there are news reports of the police seizing large quantities of forged banknotes that are currently in circulation in certain areas. This is often followed by the phrase that the notes were very good copies and it would take a trained individual to spot that they were actual forgeries.
What is never explained, is how the forgeries differ to the real ones so that members of the public could spot a forged banknote. Possibly this is a ploy so that Police officers and banks can unload their forged notes leaving the public with the worthless forgeries.
To the British government it seems that it should be kept a total secret as to all the specialist anti forgery devices that are to be found in English banknotes. It may be a cunning ploy so that when there are enough forged English banknotes in circulation and the British public are sick of losing their hard earned money, they will accept the change over to the Euro without a murmur, but sort of dont mention that there are a large number of forged high value Euro notes in circulation. As several different countries print Euro banknotes there are minor difference to each countrys issue, it might get to the stage when a certain countries Euros are not accepted by most people, one good reason for refusing French Euros.
Certain countries however are very open about forged banknotes. On Romanian television, its a channel I pick up to give an alternative to the rubbish put out by the BBC and ITV at peak times. The Romanian State showed a long documentary on their new banknotes and showed the public that almost every anti forgery device known to man, is incorporated in their notes.
Watermarks, holograms, micro perforation, fluorescence, threads, latent images, micro printing and a host of other little matters, will give even the best forgers something to puzzle over, then give up on and turn their attention to the Euro.
The Romanian public now know what to look for on their banknotes, so few forged notes will be accepted by the public. In England we have many of these devices incorporated in our high value banknotes, but the Bank of England will not admit they have them or what we should look for to detect a forged note. Its no good simply looking for the metal thread, the watermark and the hologram. The forger of our banknotes has long ago conquered these little devices the public know to look for.
Ive Got a GCSE Grade One
Ive just had my old CSE exam results upgraded after providing the Central Marking Group (in India) reasons why I deserve higher marks.
Now that extra marks will be awarded to students if they give the excuse that their exam results on the day might not be as good as they wanted. Officially extra marks will be awarded if a member of your family dies on the exam day or in the preceding days, or if your pet dies on the morning of the exam, or if you witness some unpleasant act on the way to the exam, and a number of other matters that might upset the poor student and cause grief on the day.
Get a life, go to the exam, if you have witnessed some event or had a tragedy, bad luck, youve got an exam to do, get on with it.
The officials are undecided on what marks should be awarded for certain unpleasant events on exam day whilst at school. You had your mobile phone stolen, you were assaulted in the bogs, there was no paper in the cubicles, there was no hot water, the teacher looked at you in an unpleasant way, there was a pile of sick in the school corridor, or you still have a hangover from the booze last night. The decision will be on the percentage of extra marks awarded for each of the events.
What has almost been agreed upon is that each death you notify the exam board of, will give an extra 5%. My application was that on the exam day, I was de-fleed, precise numbers not known or proved, but my CSE grade Three is now worth a GCSE grade One.
LETS PLAY A COUNTING GAME
This is something you can all join in this month. The auction catalogue has been put together on a new collating machine. When I mention the word new it is not new in the sense that it is physically new, its just new to me.
The machine was probably built in the mid 1970s by a bunch of disgruntled Swedes, but not as disgruntled as the group that built the previous collating machine, that had 30 (to the power of 30) ways of getting pages in the wrong order, the new one only has 12 (to the power of 12). Some mathematician out there must be able to tell me the total combinations I could have with a 48 page catalogue (12 double sided A4 sheets). Also add in the possibility that any one or more of the 48 pages could be inverted.
In case you did not know, the collating machine is the device that puts the catalogue in the correct order. I say correct order, that will be seen with this months catalogue. If you find missing pages to your catalogue, have a quick check to see if they are not somewhere else in the catalogue. People in Sweden, seem to use a different numbering system to the rest of Europe, but that was the country that decided over one weekend several years ago to change the side of the road the country drove on, I bet there were a few No Claims Bonuses lost the following Monday.
The reason I purchased the machine was that it seemed to be a reasonable price, it will even put a staple in the paper if I flick a switch, but that will only be placed in one corner, so to make use of that option I would have to change the format of the catalogue.
If a page is totally missing, either phone for a new catalogue or look on the web.
Until a few years ago it was a more or less certainty that Bournemouth would vote in a party that is currently run by a leader whose family might have been illegal immigrants to this country, but thats only a rumour. It is also not true that on His battle bus there is a wooden box containing earth, that box contains compost. He stopped at the local garden centre and purchased a few bags of compost, seems he wants a few flowerboxes at the front of his new home.
One of his thoughts are that Britain welcomes new workers, its just the work shy as Mr Prescott would say can B****r Off. Both parties seem to have some good points, as for the third contender, Bournemouth is slowly turning yellow. Personally I think its something to do with the drink culture, in the streets of Bournemouth. In the morning there are plenty of yellow deposits, shame we cant lose those.
If Labour really wanted to have helped the ailing lame duck Rover, that should have been put down in 1975 when they came up with that new rust bucket of a car, (how many Rover SD1s do you see on the roads today?), was to give Mr Two Jags Prescott a couple of Rover 75s to use as his official vehicles. No doubt he will wait until that design is made in China before purchasing a pair. At the moment it appears that the overseas company have not yet bought the rights to the word Rover, but what does that matter, if the cars are purchased by the locals they would have difficulty in any name that begins with an R.
Occasionally the Royal Mail do issue some very nice stamps. The only people to really know they exist are stamp collectors who have a direct service with the Philatelic Bureau and get sent all the issues automatically. Most of these will end up in the stamp dealers postage box having been purchased at well under face from the collector that suddenly realises that a direct debit order with the Philatelic Bureau is actually costing them more than they first thought.
On rare occasions something nice does come out. A set of ten British Animals popped their head over the Post Office counter, had a quick look round found that no members of the public wanted to purchase them and were relegated to the troublesome section of the Post Office stamp stock never to be seen again, except on the back cover of our catalogue this month.
The high quality colour printing is just wonderful. All we can hope is that from next year the firms that will be able to offer cheap postal deliveries will be able to give the public something to cherish and stick on their envelopes.
If you now decide that you want them too late, they have gone off sale. However if you go to your local stamp dealer and you promise to purchase two full sets of the 1981 Royal Wedding stamps issued by the Commonwealth countries he should let you have the animals set for about £3.
PUPILS MADE INTO RACISTS
As an experiment a class of eight year olds were reduced into tears when their teacher divided the class into two groups, the smaller group who wore yellow tee shirts were awarded privileges, whilst the larger group wearing white tee shirts were not given any privileges.
The children wearing white tee shirts burst into tears at being discriminated against. The lesson was originally set up to show all the children what it was like if a group were subject to discrimination.
Apparently the school in North Wales has had to apologise to the parents and there is the possibility that some of the children who wore white tee shirts might need counselling.
Some older people might realise that this was merely a repeat of an experiment carried out in the USA in the mid 1960s, again the children who were all white suddenly found that discrimination makes people unhappy.
After a bit of a furore between staff and parents it was found that although the children had become upset, no lasting damage had been done, in fact those pupils who took part in the experiment in adult life managed to realise that a persons skin matters little, it is the person inside that is where the difference can be found.
I only wish that at some of the schools I went to such a lesson had been tried. As one headmaster put on my report. Philip has not shown any unusual behaviour although he is the only coloured boy in the school. I think the headmaster thought that at the age of eleven as I was the only non white looking child in a school of 300 pupils I should be swinging from the banisters or praying to one of many Gods when assembly was on.
It was racist and bigoted ideas like that that has held back many pupils in periods up to the 1980s, now things are starting to change, but very slowly.
FEBRUARY A QUIET SALE
(Unless you know otherwise).
Bidders attending last months sale might have been a little cramped for space, which was due to the television company who produce Cash In The Attic for the BBC descending on us to make a five minute filler for one of their programmes that should be seen on BBC One either late Feb or early March.
This format of a programme for those that are not fans of the half dozen or so programmes that feature auctions, is where the vendor decides to try and raise a certain amount of money for a set cause. This could be anything to buying a puppy to breed to re-turfing the back lawn to bowling green standards, creating a Berlin Wall in the back garden or a host of other projects that in the normal way one could not afford. The cost of these ideas can be anything from a couple of hundred pounds to several thousands.
The vendor who was selling autographs, postcards and cigarette cards through us, is intending to follow in the foot steps of St Paul or something along those lines.
So last month it was rather cramped with four television staff, two cameras and other objects that seem to lurk in our auction room.
For buyers who have not been with us for many months might wonder at a few of the odd items they see lurking around the place and have little to do with the actual sale. Personally I class these as ornaments, they may be used in the future but at the moment let us say they are resting. Four laser printers, three Betamax video recorders, two studio television cameras, (one BBC & one Thames), last apparently used on the Royal Wedding in the early 1980s, a 35mm film editor (equipment), a 35mm cinema projector and an equally large 16mm cinema projector, four normal size 16mm projectors, plus a selection of other items that one day will be put into full working order. Hidden out of sight is half a Rover car and enough wood to build an ark. If all these things were cleared out we could get more buyers in, but you dont want more competition do you?
ebay Rules O.K.
If ever the question was asked, there are possibly more people that pray to ebay on a regular basis than attend churches belonging to The Church of England. Unless you are an ebay buyer you will not understand the last two minutes of an ebay auction is a time when prayers are said, when it is hoped that computers belonging to rival bidders crash.
My resolution for the New Year is not to kill any auction snipers until February.
It was interesting on Christmas Day to see how quickly the unwanted presents appeared for sale. Yes I am a miserable selfish git and have nothing better to do on Christmas day than look at the ebay site and print the next auction catalogue.
Several items were offered as unwanted Christmas presents by vendors on ebay, at 17 minutes past midnight a Sony phone appeared, 9am the ladies watch, 10am the Spa Jet set, 11am Musical jewellery case, 1pm Aftershave. Possibly around eight in the evening the musical cuddly toy also appeared.
These items seemed to be genuine unwanted presents. Personally I would have liked my two front teeth as my Christmas present. I started to ask Father Christmas for these from the age of twelve, but I must have been a bad boy as he keeps giving me the address for a dentist.
Auctioneers originally thought that if ebay became big, it might harm the general auction trade, but exactly the opposite has happened. There are now many small dealers starting up and buying from ordinary auctions and then selling on ebay. This is helping the vendors who place goods in traditional auctions and keeps many people in gainful work.
HEALTH AND SAFETY AUDIT
An audit has been completed on our Christmas tree of 1904 that was shown on the cover of last monthÆs catalogue.
The following changes will need to be made before the tree can be put on household display.
1. The fruit under the tree will need to be taken away and destroyed as there will have been contamination from falling pine needles.
2. The candles will need to be removed from the tree to prevent the possibility of them been lit.
3. The oil lamp will have to be removed and officially scraped, as oil lamps that have stands longer than 250mm are illegal in the home.
4. The string that is holding the presents does not conform to child safety standards, as there is a chance a child may injure themselves on it.
5. The presents need to be taken back to the supplier as there are no CE markings on them, and a warning that they are unsuitable for children under 36 months of age is not shown.
6. The boots may cause injury when they are first tried on as there may be a residue of pine needles that have fallen inside, even if a visual inspection has been made. There would have to be a certified inspection by an operative with a flexible optical unit. These units are not permitted to be used by unauthorised persons due to possible misuse under the data protection act.
7. The tree will have to be taken down from the table as there is the possibility of it been knocked from its display position.
It should be noted that even if the above items are conformed with, the tree will not be able to be viewed in public as there is no documentation as to the country of origin on the tree; it is not possible to take the word of the local supplier who stated the tree had come from a local forest.
For public display the tree should have been supplied with its own individual passport, giving the details of the original location of the tree, the person who planted it, the animals that were in the vicinity during its growth, the name of the person that cut it down, the transport document documents during its entire journey and finally the risk assessment documents for its display period followed by the documentation from the authorised disposal agent.
P.S. DonÆt even think of having any New YearÆs Celebration.
Signed Nanny Blair.
COUNCIL TAKE MY ADVICE
It appears that someone at Poole Council had a copy of the December catalogue which showed the Christmas tree for 2004.
It was not long before similar barriers that were depicted on the cover of the catalogue were placed around the Christmas tree at Poole Civic Centre.
It appears that such trees are very dangerous indeed and it is important that members of the public are not allowed anywhere near a Christmas tree that is decorated with lights.
It is categorically denied that Poole council plan to erect metal barriers around the 169,756 trees in the borough, but it has not been ruled out that the 86,453 pine trees that are similar in style to Christmas trees will not have barriers erected around them as a permanent feature to stop possible injuries from falling pine needles.
THE ORIGINAL COST $9,000,000
In the late 1990Æs The United States Government placed an order for a single portable satellite receiving dish. To keep the product a secret the drawings had a code word æcabbageÆ.
The specification was that it was to be made of stainless steel, when open it should have the diameter of 9 inches, and when closed a diameter of 6 inches. The dish part is to have eighteen petals, the entire design is to be perforated with 3mm diameter holes to aid wind resistance.
Following successful trials at a cost of $9,000,000 the idea was abandoned when it became clear that American companies could not guarantee the specification if a further dish was required at this cost.
It should be noted that a product with the above specification is now made at an undisclosed foreign location; this product is not now guaranteed for spy satellite reception.
The current price for a single unit is ú2.49 and is available at your local Wilko store; just give the code words that you need a Vegetable Steamer (item no. 0061 3866) and the product you need will be provided.
WHEREÆS THE BEEF
This is currently the cry from lovers of Bovril. For 120 years
Britons have found the meaty drink a wonderful source of energy.
Now the makers have pandered to requests of a few foreigners and removed all traces of beef from the drink.
Rather than make a separate vegetarian batch for the cowards that live across the water, Britons now have to make do with a vegetable drink.
The only difference that the British person will notice other than the flavour is that the item will not be reduced in price. In past years Bovril was always more expensive than their yeast based rival of Marmite. Now they are both to be made with yeast we should see a price reduction, but donÆt bank on it, just boycott it.
BOSCOMBE TO TWIN WITH DHAMI
Local residents are currently exploring possibility of twinning the two towns. It is revealed that the small village in India hold a very interesting festival.
The villagers divide themselves into two groups and for over an hour each group throws stones and rocks at the opposing group. After this years festival several makeshift medical camps had to be set up to tend to the bleeding victims. Boscombe will hold their festival every weekend.
CHRISTMAS IS COMING
So itÆs a Happy Christmas and New Year to all our customers. We offer our regular of greeting of ôPlease donÆt forget the catalogue subscription paymentö.
All we need is your name address and ú22, your bidders reference number will speed things up. For those that still have not given enough exercise to their credit cards yet, we are pleased to announce we take those as well. Our Christmas card to you all is featured on the front of this monthÆs catalogue.
REMEMBER THE DATE OF THE JANUARY SALE
In 2005 this will be held on 8th January or if you live on the other side of the pond January 8th.
In England we used to write our dates this way until about 1900 then we apparently saw sense and put in a more logical manner. The only variation that has occurred in recent years is when a computer starts with the year, month, day, hour, and seconds in descending order. ItÆs only logical Captain.
I will probably be offering viewing on the first of the month, this will depend more on how the rest of the staff have got on with lotting up the sale over the Christmas period. Christmas Day has been reluctantly given as a holiday to those people with children; other members of staff that do not have young children to look after will be required to work as normal. At a normal rate of pay and no such days off in lieu will be their reward, they will of course be required to do the work of anyone that is not here.
Signed Ebenezer Howard
ED U CATION
One of the many schools I attended in my childhood has recently been in the news. It must have been one of the schools I was reasonably well behaved at, I lasted four and a half years, the other eleven schools were for slightly lesser periods.
The Warneford school in Highworth Wilts has been in the news due to the current headmaster bringing in a rule that boys and girls must not touch.
Some of the little darlings went on strike for a short period; it seems that they do not agree with this rule.
Whilst I was there the headmaster of the time did tend to have an outburst if he caught a boy and girl smooching amongst the coats, this I think was due to the untidy area that was left when they departed.
It seems the school has now become a beacon of excellence. In my time the only reference to a beacon was when a few boys might be threatening to arson the school.
I make no apology for nicking the maths questions. These are questions set in mathematics examinations over a few decades in C.S.E. and G.C.S.E.
1950Æs Question: A logger sells a lorry of timber for ú100. His cost of production is four-fifths of the price. What is his profit?
1960Æs Question: A logger sells a load of timber for ú100. His cost of production is ú80. What is his profit?
1970Æs Question: A logger exchanges a set æLÆ of timber for set æMÆ of money. The cardinality of set æMÆ is 100. Each element is worth ú1. Make 100 dots representing the elements of set æMÆ. Represent set æCÆ the cost of production as a sub set of set. æMÆ = 80 plus set æPÆ as profit. What is the cardinality of the set æPÆ?
Due to the poor results in school maths tests of my period at school in the 1970Æs it was thought best to make the questions easier in future years.
1980Æs Question: A logger sells a load of timber for ú100. His cost of production is ú80 and his profit is ú20. Your assignment is to underline the number 20.
1990Æs Question: A logger sells a lorry of trees for ú100. His cost of production is ú120. How did his accountant show a profit margin of ú60?
2000Æs Question: By cutting down a beautiful forest, the logger makes ú20. Discuss the matter as to how the birds and squirrels feel as the logger cut down the trees.
And a question of the future:
2010Æs Question: Ein waldman sells ein wagen vol of timber fur Ç100. Das kost of production ist Ç120. How much tax is due? Und show the amount of subsidy required.
O.K. They were not the real questions; it was just a bit of humour.
THE STAFF ARE REVOLTING
To fend off a threatened strike by certain staff, it has been found necessary to delay the January 2005 sale by one week, this sale will now take place on Saturday 8th January.
There had been complaints by the staff that they did not want to work on the first Saturday of viewing on the original sale date, i.e. Christmas Day.
Personally I find their action disturbing. Why should they have Christmas Day off, and they better not tell me they want the 1st January or the following Monday as holidays.
FIRST CLASS MAIL
This months prize goes to a customer in Salisbury, He posted his bid form by 1st class mail. This was delivered to me postmarked Southampton 29/9/04 on 7/10/04, of course the sale was over.
IÆM GOING TO NUKE KOREA
Our computer has an æalways onÆ connection to the internet. With some modern software that is installed, it is possible to see the location of hackers that are trying to get in. Many it seems come from the Far East. At the moment Korea Telecom at 206 Jungja-dong, Bundang-gu, Korea, Is allowing one of their customers near Glmhwa to abuse the internet. If they do not soon stop him, that Korean War that merely has been on hold for the last few years will be restarted. The other person that is starting to annoy lives at Shilipu in China. You have been warned.
EMBARRASSED AT SCHOOL
A reaction of a mother to remover her child from school when a teacher made a six year old child attend assembly dressed only in her pants and shirt was a little over the top.
The reason for the teachers severe punishment was that the child had refused to put on her trousers after a PE lesson. The child was warned that if she did not get dressed she would go into assembly dressed as she was.
The child apparently is having nightmares at been humiliated in such away.
What a shame, if only the mother had told the girl at the end of the day that she was a silly little ***, the girl would have soon got over the event.
Oh bring back the good old days when infant and junior school, PE lessons were done by both boys & girls just in pants, and we even changed in the same room.
Police have foiled a plot by a potential terrorist to make a Dirty bomb using radioactive material from a large number of smoke detectors.
To would be terrorists, there is a much easier way, just go and steal a medical X-Ray machine. Clue many doctors and dentists have these.
If you do want to actually purchase an X-Ray machine I have one going cheap, it was used last month to irradiate all persons who attended a conference in Bournemouth, their hair should start to fall out around Xmas time. All that I am unable to supply is the control lead, funny how odd little items go missing. Price of unit as found ú200 plus ú25 UK delivery or slightly more to certain overseas countries, I might be able to get a friend in the Black Watch to deliver it to you on his next visit, all he will need is a drink as a reward.
LETÆS MAKE SUNDAY SPECIAL
Before you ignore this item, I have to mention that this is not in any form a religious preaching from The Shop Workers Union or the Keep Sunday Special Group.
Mine is a thought over all the Rules, Laws and Regulations that have been foisted on us over the last twenty years from both our Government and E.U. Meddlers Incorporated. All I would like to see added to the end of each regulation would be three words æOn A SundayÆ.
This to me would free us during our six days of work and play to have this country as it used to be with almost no interference from officialdom. As all the petty rules that we are now having to follow would simply not apply for most of the week.
THE BAN ON FOX HUNTING
This has given a few people sore heads. Everyone who had their head in the way whilst the police were demonstrating their baton waving skills can expect to find themselves taken to court over the next few months.
There is a little known law that makes it an offence to contaminate the police or officials with blood or human products. This law was originally brought in to stop drug addicts from using their syringes in a threatening manner by squirting possibly contaminated blood over person who wish to arrest them.
The police will now use this law to prosecute all those people who contaminated their nice clean shiny batons and steel rods with blood from their heads.
As for the actual law, looking at it closely it appears it is a ban on using hounds to hunt foxes, there appears to be no rule that you are not allowed to use other animals, I can expect to see an increase in Lamas and Pumas to be found in the countryside.
For my own view, the current form of fox hunting is not something I support, where foxes now have to be almost nurtured to provide a sport. If the hunters do want to keep their hounds that I can fully support a Drag Hunt, this would even give employment to a new group of workers that make sacks, our unemployment figures would instantly go down by thousands if we had to make more sacks for drag hunting. If you need to know why a sack is needed, itÆs to lay the scent for the hounds to follow, as to what is in the sack, well thatÆs a closely guarded secret, if the public and officials want to know they get told aniseed, it keeps them happy. Did you know that when an animal rights protester is cut up they make enough bits for ten drag hunts, no, only joking, they use the Colonels secret formula.
WHATÆS ON THE T.V.?
During the slight problem with the unannounced visitors at Westminster, it was surprising to see how many M.P.Æs crawled out of the woodwork after the event had happened. Before the event the chamber was almost empty for what was a major parliamentary event. It was just by an odd chance that I was watching the event live and did actually see the original event followed by the long view of the clock to try and cover the event from the public gaze.
When the sitting resumed it seemed as if by a miracle all the seats suddenly filled up. If you ever watch the ordinary parliamentary events on the T.V. for most of the time there are so few of our over paid M.P.Æs actually taking any interest in the important matters we have elected to make their business.
The answer to where they were all hiding was found out later in the subsidised bar and restaurant that late in the afternoon found it had fewer than normal customers.
IÆm just pleased that Bournemouth Council did not bribe a certain group to have their conference here this year, but allowed the next to be elected party to visit instead.
To all our customers in Brighton, we hope your town soon recovers and that the police did not delay your lives too much with their over the top control. As we say æCome to Sunny BournemouthÆ (unless you need police protection).
SHOPLIFTERS WILL BE EATEN
This is possibly going to be a new slogan for the group of stores made famous by Mr Cohen. It has taken the management some time to realise that in this country there is very little deterrent or penalty for the serial thief. The poor pensioner who has been confused with all the glaring sign and loud music and has innocently popped a 23p tin of sardines into her own shopping bag of course will always be prosecuted to the severest penalty the law allows.
It has taken rumours reaching HQ in London that some of their stores in China are using more local traditional methods of deterring the shoplifters; one thief was drowned at one store and at another was simply beaten to death. As the only complaints seem to be from Amnesty International little notice will be taken to correct the local customs.
It has been suggested that possibly these quaint customs could be brought into this country. If the level of shop lifting goes down, who knows prices might fall.
POLICE TAKE CHILDREN TO SCHOOL
Following my last monthÆs comment that parents are finding it difficult to get their children to school. It appears that children in Braintree in Essex who dislike going to school and would not attend unless their parents physically dragged them there (illegal under their human rights), are now been taken to school in the morning in a police car rather than allow the children to miss their fifteen minute school walk to school.
And a message to all those supply teachers, yes the term is about to start and your services are needed, remember to wear something padded as we donÆt want the little darlings to hurt you.
DO YOU WANT TO BECOME A FILM MOGUL
In this monthÆs sale we offer an unusual lot. It consists of about twenty cans of film. This has all been professionally shot on 35mm film. It consists of Negatives and rushes. Shot by Jim Mulkerns (1927-2003). As it came from the estate of cameraman Walter Lassally famous for such films as Beat Girl, Saturday Night Sunday Morning and Zorba the Greek. This hoard simply entitled Week-End might be one of his unfinished projects unless anyone knows its release title. Shot in 1967 it will be of interest to some budding editor. In case you comment that you donÆt have the equipment to run it on, we can also solve that problem. We can offer one of his Moviola Film Editing machines for you to work on. Instead of shutting yourself away with that computer, shut yourself away with this lot.
LETÆS UPSET SOMEONE
In todayÆs politically correct climate, even opening oneÆs mouth appears to offend some minority group or group that appears to have the thoughts of minorities in their mind.
The latest Royal to fall foul of this politically correct brigade is Princess Michael of Kent. It appears that possibly the word æhalf-castÆ has been uttered rather than the correct term of æmixed raceÆ. In the words of Prince Philip I could possibly utter the same the same thoughts of æ**** ***Æ Please note this is an Anglo Saxon term. That group of mixed race persons has been causing trouble in this country ever since the original settlers in the kingdom headed off to Wales and the West Country to get out of the way of the Flaxen Haired lot that was invading.
Yes, you know the one in London thatÆs made out of a highly polished stone. Any parent would have told the designer and builder that if you add water and children you are going to have an accident when they start to paddle.
The ideal solution will be to pour a layer of rough concrete in the bottom to make a safer foot hold, or why not do what Bournemouth did in the early 1900Æs, put gravel and stones in the bottom of their ditch to allow the children to paddle in safety.
As for maintenance, the Bournemouth stream needs only little cost each year. The main expense is removing the larger cans and food wrappers.
We do have to put up a sign saying that the water does not meet the E.U. Water Quality, but who cares, us children canÆt read. Best wear your wellingtons you donÆt want to cut your feet on the broken beer bottles.
BEAT YOUR CHILD (You Know It Makes Sense)
Under the new laws that may soon be introduced it will be a crime to beat your child. Unknown to many beating your child has been against the law for many years. What has been allowed since Victorian times is the right of parents to punish their children with pain. The main idea was not to leave physical injuries. The child might be turned into as gibbering wreck after such punishment, but that is possibly better than the mindless little thugs that are on the streets of today.
Careful punishment by a parent or heaven forbid a teacher may soon not be allowed in this country. It might be a light smack is allowed by a parent, but if any sign of bruising is ever found the parent will soon find themselves taken to court, the child put in care and the family permanently broken up. This of course will take the resources of the police, social services and the courts, where of course they could be dealing with the troublemakers where no restrictions of any kind have been given during the childÆs up bringing.
If one has been watching a television programme where a group of young men who have had slight problems with discipline have been given a very short course in the style of National Service life, it is easy to see how a group of foul mouth yobs can soon be reduced to tears by a strong military presence. In the modern climate no physical punishment is allowed, I canÆt think but wonder if someone of the rank of corporal or above in the 1950Æs was sworn at, the odd boot or stick would sort of be falling on the culprit.
In todayÆs schools if a child wants to mouth off to a teacher the only punishment is detention or possibly some extra work, if the child does not want to do this a short suspension is given followed by expulsion if this fails. What more can a child who does not show any interest in school ask for except that he is told he does not have to go to school.
Parents who fail to send their children to school currently end up in prison. Until now possibly a smack got the little darlings out of the door and in the direction of the school, if a parent is not allowed to smack a child, how do you get your child off to school? The only way would be to physically tie them up and deliver them personally to school, but I have the idea this might violate their human rights. Bring on the social workers and police.
From the age I could walk I slowly went through a range of punishments. These started with very light slaps on my legs or bottom from my mother or grandmother. The order they were given to me might have seemed odd, but the methods worked At the age of four my grandmother started to use her hand on my rear with a little more force, this generally kept me reasonably well behaved, once a punishment was over and I had recovered there was always a treat of a few sweets to make everything better. I was quite happy.
Shortly before my sixth birthday I excelled myself over my bad behaviour, two light strokes were put on my rear with the cane by my grandmother, I was still rewarded after the punishment.
At the age of seven I think I set the record at school for been the youngest boy to be given the cane, as it was a mixed infant and primary school, I was mistakenly thought to be in the primary section due to my height and was punished accordingly with one stroke of the cane. I was more afraid of what my mother was going to say when she learnt I had been given the cane, than the minor pain from the original punishment.
Slowly as I grew up and became more objectionable, the punishments increased in severity. I was kept reasonably tame by these methods. Had I been told that I could not be physically punished I would have really become one of the Bad Boys. Sounds like a title for a television programme.
Oh yes, under new politically correct rules we must not use the words æCommon senseÆ.
LETÆS RUIN SOME STAMPS
If there is one way of annoying a stamp collector other than a heavy postmark on some stamps, it is the use of a ball point pen. In the normal way until now it has mainly been the odd letter that has slipped through the automatic franking machines that has suffered.
On my incoming mail I now notice this is appearing more on packets and parcels.
Many of the items we receive have these nice white labels attached, I æm sorry but on occasions due to a heavy amount of mail to go out late in the afternoon, there is not really the time to always use postage stamps on the mail.
Until now I thought it was at the sorting office where the damage to the stamps was done, I now find out that often it is on the Post Office Counters where the ball point pen is wielded. As often the parcel date stamp is seldom to be easily found due to lack of use. A ball point pen seems so much easier.
I HATE FOOTBALL
Along with a small minority of the population of England, I find the current fervour over a group of grown men who are paid a vast wage to kick a ball about rather irritating. It is not that I object to their vast wages other than through slight jealousy, it is that the programmes I want to watch on the television have all been cancelled, so that for the most of the events we can watch a group of foreigners play football. By all means show the matches England are in, but to put all the other matches on the main channels is a little bit of a nuisance.
If all the matches had been put on BBC3 the up take of digital set top boxes, cable and satellite units would have been tremendous. The amount of extra manufacturing and installation work that would have been done shortly before the matches would have made a few engineers very happy.
It was similar in 1966, there were endless days of football, and the only game my friends wanted to play was football.
In the end England won and a large number of stamp collectors became very greedy, a few made some money for a few days, the rest became stuck with a load of 4d stamps that they never knew what to do with.
In reality for several years after the event they were only worth 4d each, due to Stanley Gibbons putting a high catalogue price of several shillings on each stamp. Stamp collectors thought they were rich, until they worked out that there was over a hundred stamps per collector in the country, and their investments would not ever see an actual profit in real terms.
WE USE 1953 STAMPS ON OUR MAIL
To a few of our customers it might have seemed odd that we appeared to be using stamps that were first issued in 1953 on our mail.
These Wildings went obsolete and invalid to use many years ago. What was not realised by the vast majority of the population and many postal workers, was the Post Office had re issued the design with decimal values, but had not actually used the word æPÆ on some of the stamps to show its new value just spelling out the value.
As the stamps were only issued to a few demanding stamp collectors and in theory 95% of the revenue of the stamps would never be used for postal purposes the Post Office are very happy to bend almost all the rules they have invented on design and colour of stamps, over such an issue.
These stamps even had the word revenue on them, from a period when the government decided that all receipts should have a 2d stamp attached as a money making scheme, and slightly more on some legal agreements.
I can remember thinking what a waste of 6d it was when my mother had to
stick a stamp on my school contract, the bar of chocolate I could have bought
with that 6d in 1965.
BECOME A POSTCARD COLLECTOR (The easy way).
Instead of paying for postcards, why not get people to send you cards as a gift.
A few years ago, there was a boy who made an attempt to get into The Guinness Book of Records by seeing if he could get the most number of postcards sent to him.
The boy originally was suffering from cancer, so people were more than happy to send a postcard to him. This might sound to be quite an easy matter, a person would send a postcard to this poor sick boy, and he would get into the record book.
This was more or less as it happened, the local town Post Office where the boy lived was rather inundated with postcards and anyone in the vicinity that was receiving postcards possibly had their cards mixed in with his daily thousands, but all went to plan, he got in the record books and if one wanted a happy ending he recovered from cancer.
That was in the late 1980Æs. His tons of postcards are still doing the round. Ask any modern Postcard dealer who deals with modern used postcards if they would like to buy any of Craig ShergoldÆs cards and wait for their reaction.
The story is so nice that it had to be made into a film; a British Documentary giving the correct details would make a very interesting film. However the AmericanÆs got hold of the story and from that point onward there was only a slight version of the truth.
There has been a delay in producing the film as the American film studios were still winning World War II, and starting WWIII which it has been proved they will win.
The American film resembles more of a soppy story. Shot mainly in America, it tries to recreate England. Most of the details are wrong, even an attempt to show an address in a small English village has a house number running into the thousands.
Most of the story is about the boy on his death bed. It seems the English doctors have given up hope and are unable to save him. Along comes an American doctor and if by a miracle, Craig is saved. He returns home to a welcome with the house decked out in American and British flags. If there is another change to the story it is not postcards the boy wants but greeting cards.
If only the Americans could understand one thing about us Brits (racial unacceptable term). In England we do not deck our homes out with Union flags everywhere. The biggest insult the Yanks made was to fly our flag upside down (due to ignorance). How would they like it if we hung their flag upside down.
BOURNEMOUTH MAYOR BANNED
Our civic leader had been banned from attending an event at our conference centre. In the normal way major events would be opened by our mayor. Due to security it was required that everyone supplied a passport style photo for their pass.
As our mayor was simply going to be opening the event and not continually coming and going throughout the event, it was suggested by the mayor that a pass should not be necessary. The attendance would be in full mayoral regalia, and as our first citizen of the town, should be well enough known to be able to go into council owned property without having to have a passport photo struck her attire. The mayor it seems will not be attending.
The comment from ex Winton schoolboy - Clive Chamberlain (now chairman of Dorset Police Federation). ôI consider the attitude of the mayor absolutely disgracefulö, seems a little strong though.
It appears that even David Blunket will be made to wear his security badge.
My only questions are will David know what photo has been affixed to his badge and will his guide dog be made to wear a security badge at all times?
The population of Bournemouth are more worried that this black Labrador might really be a terrorist in disguise; after all, certain foreign powers have trained dolphins to carry explosives to a target then detonate themselves. I hope the Bournemouth Council will send the redecorating bill after a labrador has exploded in our conference hall to Tony Blair.
A new all day and all night shop has opened near to us. Due to the problem of trying to get staff to work unsocial hours, the only people that the store can get to work are persons who have come from overseas and are in need of work as they are not able to claim benefits.
The level of their English language and English way of life are often lacking. I went in on a Bank Holiday Monday morning, other than this shop and us there were few things open. I purchased a bread roll and a Daily mail. The amount rung up was over three pounds, I queried the price of the bread roll, I have to say it was a nice size, but at over ú2.50 it was a little on the expensive side even for a 24hr store.
They went to check the price of the bread roll, and came back. Again I was asked for over ú3 I now requested a piece of paper and a pen, this was to show how manually adding up two items under a pound each do not come up to ú3 odd.
I wrote down 40p for the paper, I was now corrected the newspaper was ú2.60.
It appears that this new visitor to this country has little idea on the cost of newspapers. The price was clearly shown on the front ú2.60.
Amongst my mail this week was a very nice application from a charity to donate money to them, to help speed up my application a pen was enclosed. This now seems to be a regular gift from charities. Rather than as normally throwing such literature away, the charity providing you with a pen really obliges you to offer the contents of your bank account on regular occasions to them in exchange for their often cheap and almost useless pen.
The current free pen was from The Woodland Trust, who want to plant more trees. Not something I really want to support, in Bournemouth they get in the way of our nice costal views and in Christchurch they seem to be preventing the local endangered lizards from surviving.
The pen was slightly unusual. Rather than the normal bookies type offering that is not really made for my large paws this pen was of normal size, however rather than the cheap plastic this pen was made with a brown paper surround. Now if they did not make pens with paper there would not be the need for more trees. It mentioned that the pen was made of a recyclable material. For curiosity I took the pen apart, underneath the brown wrapping there was some newspaper. Not been very literate I found it difficult to read, then I realised that I might be holding it up the wrong way, nope, it appears that the newspaper comes from East of Bradford, Hong Kong might be a good bet, all I can do is wonder if there is a sweat shop somewhere up North, is demanding that the Economic Migrants illegally working in this country bring in their own materials or that the firm has been environmentally friendly and shipped millions of pens from the Far East. There was however one environmental feature the pen was only half full of ink. Someone must have been reading that ink costs more than the most expensive Champagne when sold by volume, the ecological thought is that the pen will need to be recycled earlier, for this pen it was now, having taken it apart it was now useless. Coming to a Landfill near you springs to mind.
The only decent pens that seem to come free are the ones supplied by insurance firms who inform you that their car Insurance is cheaper and better value than anyone elseÆs. I have had several nice pens as I cannot resist the challenge by calling their freephone number and asking them for a quote.
It appears that no one other than the company I am with wish to insure a car on a compressive policy for under ú150. When they do start working out how much it would cost, even the firm that threatens to æQuote me happyÆ, fails to live up to the mark. We start with a figure of around ú350 when I tell them it is a yellow car, this increases to ú450, when I tell them that the steering wheel is on the passenger side, itÆs much easier to drive a car if you donÆt have this clutter in front of you, when I ask them to guarantee a write off value of ú4,500, the premium edges around the ú700 figure, and when I mention that I wish to insure two cars at the same time the rate hits the ú1,000. And when I ask for both pleasure and Business use and do not wish to restrict the amount of miles I do and that I do not believe in the idea of a No Claim Bonus, their computer seems to give up on me. The pen arrives in the post a short time later.
The odd matter though is even when I go to the same group company who actually insures my car, if I contact them directly the cheapest seems to be a little over ú500, rather odd.
I COULD MAKE MONEY FROM YOU
Most of the use of the telephone in our building is phone calls coming into us. I discourage the staff from making out going calls by keeping the phone in an exposed position preventing private non-business use.
My phone bills however have been going up over the last few months. Trawling through the dialled numbers hunting to see who is dialling the premium 09 numbers I find no activity in this area.
ItÆs the 0870 and 0845 numbers that are clocking up the money. The modern idea of their use, is that firms that have these numbers gain a few pence each time you phone them. As a business I have been offered these numbers as a method of making money. As yet I have always turned the idea down, much as I would like to make money from you each time you call me, I think that I should not penalise you for talking to me.
The biggest culprit is The Post Office. Each time I want to organise a collection of mail I have to dial this number that costs a few pence per minute than a normal inland number.
I would not mind paying this premium if I got straight through to a human, but there is always a thirty seconds to a minute automated menu that has to be worked through before you get the correct extension, they appear to offer every possible useless service before the number you want comes up. Remembering the number does little good, the system will only let you dial once it has finished its menu, the trick of not letting them know you have a touch tone phone does not work, people who are not able to use the star system are put in a queue with a minimum wait of three minutes.
The other time I need to ring them is to complain about their overcharging me, this call is never less than five minutes. They donÆt seem to realise that I think it unfair that if they fail to deliver a correctly addressed parcel and return it to me, then to ask for me paying for its return cost, itÆs actually rubbing salt into the wound. Big business seem to ignore such double charging, but to me it is the difference between eating that day and going without food. Since signing up for Parcelforce to deliver the parcels IÆve lost four stone in weight. A good way to diet, however since IÆve started complaining IÆve put on half a stone with the money I had refunded being spent on food.
REMEMBER THE GUARDIAN
This once famous newspaper was remembered by many as the best piece of literature for would be proof readers, rather than having to pay for an expensive course as one does today to learn about grammatical errors in the printed word. Half an hour in a quiet spot and you would qualify as a proof reader having found every type of error that it was possible to find in the printed word.
Today times have changed, there are few errors, however this might be due to the content of news diminishing. On certain days of the week this paper is taken over by all the local authorities of this land who seem to find the need to take half page advertisement to offer jobs to Multicultural persons that have disabilities to organise pie throwing contests.
I purchase this newspaper once a year, in the hope that they will once again have an April Fools joke that they made in 1977 when they made spoof editions of all the other major newspapers and had many printers in fits of laughter with all the printing æinÆ jokes imaginable.
Have you heard the one about the printer in Chippenham whoààà
HOW TO SPEND ú10,000 ON CARDBOARD
Back in the early 1960Æs when the family had breakfast, the main object on the table in importance after the teapot was the box of corn flakes. If life in our household was austere it was that seldom we saw any other box than the corn flake packet with its cockerel design.
For economy and due to everyone eating corn flakes, the giant box was always purchased. Fresh corn flakes out of a newly opened box are wonderful, leave the packet unclosed for a few days and what remains is rather unappetising. I donÆt think our family had a patent design for closing the box to keep the contents fresh, if it did, we might be in for some royalties. The method was to fold the inner wax paper first, then to fold over the box top to resemble a roof of a house design, as the contents of the box went down, the roof could become lower and lower.
Apparently the family of today are not capable of such design, I blame the lack of activity on TV. In those days Val Singlton always showed what you could do with a cardboard tube and a piece of sticky back plastic.
It seems that Kelloggs has spent ú10,000 in introducing a foil inner and a folding top to the box in the shape of a roof of a house.
If only they had come to me, I could have saved them a few quid. I must get into the redesign of products. Our family were always known for their improvement of objects and since the early 1800Æs the redesign of many products earned the family various patents on improvements on agricultural machinery. The Howard Rotary Hoe was one final product from the Australian branch of the family; they even came back after the last war to set up a factory and tried to rope in some of their relatives from this country.
There was an email sent to me, mentioning the programme I could use to stop some junk mail. MAILWASHER (link http://www.mailwasher.net/download.php ) is a good programme. All my customers, who use the word Viagra and other similar words, get their emails deleted before I read them.
He asks that I put his name in my jottings. O.K. Nick Carlin of Poole, your wish is granted, if only the rest of the customers were that easy to please. The other claim to fame that Nick can mention other than the mention in the jottings is when his foot was stepped on by a police horse at the England v Scotland match at Wembley in 1977.
I bet the police later arrested him for saying nasty words to the horse a few seconds later. He would also like a programme for that match, so if anyone has one that they no longer need, I will be happy to forward it on.
One other matter, could the Scottish fans give the pieces of wood back that they found lying on the pitch.
ARE OUR FEMALE CUSTOMERS MARRIED?
I wish to complain again that as this year was a leap year, not one female proposed to me. Ladies IÆm Free.
Please ask in another four years time û I might say yes.
At one time there was a law that male person refusing the offer of marriage in a leap year could be fined. I bet our chancellor has forgotten this money making idea.
Our local newspaper featured a rather expensive advertisement encouraging Share fishermen to save for their National Insurance contributions. Unlike the PAYE Employed persons this small group have their own tax classifications.
The advert on behalf of the Inland Revenue was probably inserted into many newspapers, at what cost I hate to think. Personally I would have put one advert in Commercial Fisherman & Dogfish News, which would have probably caught as many as the local newspapers did.
I rang the special dedicated hlep line that has been set up, to ask one simple question. How many Share Fishermen are there?
The help line could not tell me, I was put through to another department. This information was only available to journalists. I asked to be put through to a section that answered questions to non journalists û none it seemed existed. In Britain we still live in a secret society, it appears that if the number of Share Fishermen were divulged to the public it would affect the nation.
TIMES DONÆT CHANGE
The West Country is possibly an area of Britain where there is not a large amount of racial problems. Not having much heavy industry it has never attracted many newcomers from foreign parts to that area. This possibly has allowed more of a problem for any person with non European looks who venture down to that part of the country.
It is reported that in the town of Burnham on Sea, a racial problem is rife. At an infantÆs school, the only pupil that has a slight tan to his completion has suffered torments from teachers and fellow pupils.
In the school play where all his class mates are allowed to dress up as white clouds he is given the part as the only black cloud. Fellow pupils not used to having anyone other than a white child amongst them, make the childÆs live a misery by calling him names like æMud-faceÆ.
In time this six year old boy may grow up with problems, unless these racial ideas are nipped in the bud. In a London or Birmingham school there would not be a problem, a selection of the boyÆs fellow group would show their displeasure to any white group uttering such remarks.
I would have hoped that the racist town of Burnham on Sea had changed its attitude to a single small child with slightly non white looks.
It was this town that forty years ago I moved to from London. For my first six years of life I had never thought I was different in any way, until that point I had never known any form of racism. Coming to this town however gave me my first insight how isolated groups challenge anything that was different.
While the boy of today was called æMud-FaceÆ, my name at the age of six was æChoc-DropÆ. At first my mother possibly took such name calling to be simply fun, in the way a child might get called Skinny or Fatty.
It was only realised by her that perhaps I was been singled out when a fellow classmate brought her older sister who attended a different school to the small private school I was at and announced to my mother that æher sister wanted to see the Brown BoyÆ.
Apparently things in the area have not changed much, the only plus point is that in todayÆs modern thinking the word æCompensationÆ appears, the mother of the boy is seeking damages from the private school. All I ever got was an apple crate to sit at when my school desk fell apart; the teachers had to make me feel different.
If I have a word of wisdom for the current child in Burnham on Sea, for the next part in a play, choose the role of Darth Vader, you will be able to dress in black and be allowed to kill any persons you do not agree with. Problem solved.
IÆVE LEARNT A NEW WORD
The following item should be ignored by persons under the age of forty or from the Midlands or Northern parts of Britain. We Southerners lead such sheltered lives.
It appeared that a shopkeeper in Northampton, was arrested by the police and locked up in the cells for several hours and has been told that he faces charges under the Public Order Act. His crime was to use the word TWAT in a shop notice on his premises.
Until this moment in time all I thought was that the word was simply slang for an idiot or the like. All the older dictionaries we use, give this as the meaning; apparently in the modern works it has a different meaning. So use this word with care unless you wish to reap the wrath of the local police.
YOU VILL DO VHAT VE SAY
It seems another shopper has found that a leading German supermarket has a different way of customer care compared with every British Supermarket. A pensioner in South Wales has been rewarded with a ban for failing to turn her trolley the wrong way round when going through the till area in the supermarket.
The store has come up with the lame excuse that if the trolley is turned the wrong way round the cashier will be able to see if there is any item left in the bottom. In reality the till staff would never have the time to look in the base of a trolley, they are under so much pressure to scan the goods and take your money, that even if you went in starkers it would never be noticed.
The real reason you are required to turn your trolley the wrong way round and take hold of it by the metal ends, these are quite sharp and minor cuts can occur û the look on the cashiers face when I handed over a slightly bloodied banknote was well worth the pain, is down to the odd design of the till area, unlike an English supermarket it is not intended that you pack your bags at the till, the goods area at the till is cut at an angle to take a trolley that faces the wrong way. So once the item is scanned you are meant to put the goods directly into the trolley and go find somewhere else to pack your bags.
Failure to place your goods in the trolley as soon as they have been scanned might get them shoved into your trolley by the cashier. As yet I have not seen this done in our local supermarket, as this is a deprived area and few customers could even half fill a trolley with goods, even though the food is the best value in the area.
A simple solution would have been to build the till area with the angle cut in the opposite direction, customers could then have the luxury of the nice plastic handle to take hold of.
I expect my ban of entering the store to come any day now.
DOG PARALYSED BY LEAFLET
The printing world has breathed a sigh of relief that there has been no ban on the printing and distribution of leaflets. Postal workers will be please that their never ending chore of leaflet delivery will not come to an abrupt end.
A major court case has just ended when an owner of a dog attempted to claim ú2,906 from a supermarket when the dog became paralysed after jumping up at a leaflet that had been poked through the door resulting in the dog landing badly.
It was a claim for negligence that the owner of the dog made, however the judge found that æa suspended leaflet does not equates to negligenceÆ.
Perhaps the verdict would have gone the other way had the dog sued the firm for the nasty taste of the leaflet, due to the fingers that originally held the leaflet at one point. We could not have a dog suffering due to a person who smoked having handled the leaflet.
ú2,500 IF YOU BECOME A STAMP COLLECTOR
There is so little interest in stamp collecting, that even an offer of ú2,500 for schools to get their children to take part in a competition had no takers. It was not that this was prize money; it was simply an offer of money by The North-Western Federation of Philatelic Services to take part in a competition. The grant was funded by National Lottery money.
If you ever wondered why you hear stories of money from the National Lottery having to be given to groups of minorities who wish to paint themselves purple and save the lesser-spotted Auk in the Hibernian Isles, or a porn film, it is due to the failure of using the money when it has been granted to Philatelic Groups.
THE EMAIL ADDRESS
Please note there will be a change to the address if you email bids and for other matters. The new address will be
Please update your records. If possible please use the word BIDS in the subject line for any matters.
The change has been needed due to the amount of pork luncheon meat that is appearing in my inbox. A daily dump of over 500 items of junk mail is hiding any real mail. So a new address is now to be used, I will keep the old address as a backup but only emails with the word BIDS in the subject line will be read. As a new mail programme called Mailwasher will deal with everything else.
LIDL and the Five Pound Note
Long, long ago I had a problem when I went into a Lidl supermarket and they refused to take a then legal tender ú5, the manager on duty at the time came up with an excuse that it was company policy not to take them.
A reply to my complaint was promised within a few days. At the end of December I finally had a reply. They admit that the note was legal tender and it should have been accepted. Apparently the person concerned has been spoken to. I must remember to watch for falling pallets of goods when I go in next time.
There may have been a few disappointed customers who wondered why I did not send out any Christmas cards. Humbug. The main reason is down to cost, although a business can put such expenses down to business use, in the end it will be the customer who pays for the card.
The most luxury Christmas card that must have cost over ú1 came from the accountant, their bill for their services followed shortly after.
VAT and The Chocolate Biscuit
It has finally been agreed between Customs and United Biscuits over the matter of VAT and the chocolate on the top of a biscuit. Was biscuit that was filled with chocolate the same as a biscuit that had a covering of chocolate.
After debating the matter for several months and no doubt munching through a few packets of biscuits, the answer has been finally arrived at. The result is that a chocolate filled biscuit is a standard rate item, in other words for each one you eat you pay the government 17.5% of its value.
For their next trick it will to be worked out if the gum on the back of the postage stamp is a taxable item.
BOOK DEALERS ARE REJOICING
Book dealers are currently very happy with the new M6 Toll motorway. It appears that many tons of unsold Mills and Boon novels (approx 2.5 million novels) have been used to make a firm surface to lay the road covering on, in future it is hoped that the entire output from the Mills & Boon printing press will be taken directly to the motorway construction site rather than allowed to rot on second hand book dealersÆ shelves.
The only problem with using Mills & Boon books is that if they have not been properly shredded, when they start to rebuild the road in a couple of years time due to wear and tear (sorry now currently under reconstruction) the road menders will be sitting down on the job and reading the works.
HAPPY NEW YEAR
Other than London where it appears it is illegal to have any form of gathering to celebrate the New Year, I hope the arrival of 2004 will bring a happy party mood to all.
A general thank you to all who sent the staff and myself Christmas cards, Chanukah cards and New Year cards. The illustrations are a far cry from the 1900Æs to 1930Æs types that we offer for sale in the auctions. This year I was trying to find cards that celebrate the meaning of Christmas. That was the difficult part. After almost having the cards seized by the politically correct lobby, I canÆt see anything wrong in purchasing Christmas cards with angels flying in the sky, I will have to wonder if a few will have actually arrived before Christmas Day, the others may arrive early in the New Year after been diverted via Rangoon and Orkney.
IT IS NOW ILLEGAL TO SET OFF YOUR GREEN FIRE EXTINGUISHER
There are a few exceptions that cover the military and the aviation industry, but other than these few locations Businesses and the Public in general will find that they are breaking the law if they use a Halon type fire extinguisher. This chemical gas type extinguisher was stopped from production a few years ago, due to the effect they have on the ozone layer when the gas escapes into the atmosphere.
Possibly it is the most clean and easy to use product when it comes to fighting electrical fires, it appears that it will be illegal to set one of these units off from the end of 2003.
Offices and homes will be scoured by the Extinguisher Police in the New Year, in the search for these green objects. Just make sure you have either fought your fire before the end of 2003 or have planned your journey to take the extinguisher to your local Halon Fire Extinguisher Disposal Plant.
If in doubt ring your local council, they have a duty of care to dispose of all domestic fire extinguishers free of charge, or in other words you are going to pay an awful lot in next yearÆs council tax for the privilege, best take them over the border into a rival borough and let them foot the bill.
If you do discover an electrical or flammable liquid fire that you feel capable of fighting, make sure you can read the small print on the new extinguishers. Now that they are all to be coloured red, some are only for use on paper type fires.
DO NOT STOP IN BOURNEMOUTH
The local council have just decided to bring in meter type charging to park on certain roads in Bournemouth, coupled with this are the instructions to the local traffic wardens (Now employed by Bournemouth Council) to get tough on any motorist that infringes the many rules that govern stopping on roads in Bournemouth. (It is illegal to stop on a Wednesday afternoon on a Bournemouth street in a motor vehicle unless you are carrying a bale of hay).
More money needs to be made to pay for the new parking services that Bournemouth Council has brought in.
If the town centre was not looking a little bare after several shops have deserted the area and gone to a new shopping mall on the outskirts of Bournemouth, this latest idea on parking will drive most of the remaining shoppers away. As from the end of March the new electric signs that you see on the major roads into Bournemouth will change their current message of DonÆt use a hand held mobile phone whilst driving, to a similar stark message ôShop in Poole - its easierö.
IT IS ONLY A RUMOUR
The auctions will be open for viewing on the 1st. That an admission charge will be made is completely fictitious, as with normal public holidays a mere bribe of food and drink is all that is needed to keep any staff that turn up for work on that day happy.
THEY SAY MY MONEY IS NO GOOD
I went into my local foreign owned supermarket. If one shops at Lidl, one has to get used to the non British way of doing business. One of the major differences is that there are no baskets to put ones shopping. You either have to unlock a trolley with a coin or struggle around the supermarket balancing your load. The other difference is that there is often only one checkout open, which often results in long queues, five waiting to be served is not strange, often queues of ten can form, the record number in a queue I have been in has been twenty eight.
On my last visit at the beginning of November I eventually arrived at the head of the queue. My purchases were few, the total cost was around ú8, I handed over two ú5 notes. One was handed back to me with the comment that they were not accepting that type. I knew full well that the earlier series of banknote was to be phased out later in the month, but they remained full legal tender until the 21st of November, which was over two weeks away.
I now had the embarrassing situation of having no other money to pay for the odd ú3 worth of goods.
I asked to speak to the manager. After a long wait, the young manager came out. He now told me that It was a Lidl decision not to accept these banknotes from the start of November. There was now the embarrassing time when goods that I had purchased were taken back. The queue of shoppers was getting longer and longer.
To the other shoppers it looked as if I was trying to pass dud currency. I left the store, one of the products that had been taken back was a bag of cat litter. I went next door to the Wilkinson store, who quite happily took my legal tender ú5 and gave me change.
Complaining to Lidl is almost an impossible task. No telephone number for any store or their head office are published anywhere. The only way of contacting them is via a help desk. They are unable to put you through to a manager or anyone else. They told me that my complaint would be looked at and I would receive a reply within a couple of weeks.
I rang again a few days later to try and get some answers, again I only got as far as the help desk. My main question was why did they not take the ú5?, as it is a store dealing mainly in cash. Try paying by Credit card or cheque and you will soon be shown the door.
The banks will take the old series banknote for many months to come. A reason I was given is that they donÆt have the staff to take money to the bank. My next question was then what do they do with the money? This was not answered. My only thought was that as this some foreign enterprise, do they have the need for large sums of banknotes. I asked if money laundering was one of the reasons why they might not want banknotes that would soon become obsolete. I was told that they were not into money laundering. I now asked if they could put into writing that they were not into money laundering. It appeared that this was not possible; however I would receive a written reply within two weeks.
It is now the 21st of November, the only thing I have had from them is a note saying they will look into my complaint. Its too late now, the ú5 have been withdrawn from being legal tender.
On the note heading there was their direct line phone number.
Complaints to Lidl should go to 01934 523100
As for shopping in that store I have not been back since. If I get a satisfactory reply, I may go back. There is the Marks & Spencer store half a mile away, IÆm using that.
Customers who have known me from the mid 1970Æs will know that I have put on a little weight over the years. A short time ago it reached 20 stone. When diabetes set in I had to tackle the problem.
Trying to cut down food resulted in my weight dropping down to 19 stone. For the last year or so the doctor and hospital have followed my progress. A more drastic diet has been arranged.
On the television there was a programme about the Atkins Diet, which is a diet high in fatty food, but has nil or very low carbohydrate content and recommends a kcal intake of around 2000 per day. The main things that can be eaten is red meat, fish, cheese and all the normal things one might cut down a little on if one went on a diet.
The hospital have put me on a diet called The Cambridge Diet. Devised by the sadist Alan Howard. Its similar to The Atkins diet, but as well as avoiding carbohydrates, you also avoid all forms of meat products, fish, cheese etc. The dayÆs food comes as four sachets of a milk shake like mix. You only add water. Each days kcal intake is down to 548 kcal.
Yes I have lost weight IÆm down to 17 stone.
My temper is a little frayed walking around the town, if anyone annoys me I will have difficulty of not going for their jugular.
If I have cheated a little itÆs the odd morsel of food that sort of falls off the catÆs plate. It is not as bad as it seems. The cat has breast of chicken, cod fillets, tuna and all manner of food that is classed by our government as zero rated human food, if he was going to eat cat food the government in their wisdom would charge him 17.5 % VAT.
Next week IÆm aiming at getting under 17 stone.
Catherine Zeta-Jones would like it known that she is not on the Atkins Diet and that anyone publishing articles linking her to the diet, will be taken to court. Probably in the USA, it appears that out courts have little sympathy over rich people going to court over silly matters.
In my personal opinion the reason that Catherine Zeta-Jones is able to stay slim is that she is now not tucking into any of Ma LarkinÆs steak and kidney pies.
SENDING OUT THE GOODS
For the past ten years we have used Securicor to deliver our parcels, which has worked reasonably well, with a final charge of around ú12 for most parcels. The only two major problems is that if a customer is away when they go to deliver it, I have to pay a second time even if the parcel is delivered the following day. The other problem is on charging for out of the way places. The Isle of Wight is one of these locations, the charge is then the same as a Scottish off shore island.
The firm has now merged with DHL, new systems are now being brought in. The paperwork for each parcel now seems endless.
Parcelforce have now offered me a service, with a signed for fast delivery, with no additional charges or vast amounts of paperwork.
This I am going to give a go with. Most parcels will remain at ú12 each. Please write on your bid form if you need a certain carrier, otherwise I will use my judgement over which service to use.
Small lightweight items ú3.
500g to 2kg ú3 - ú8
plus cost of signature or special delivery fee.
Above 2kg up to 10kg ú12
Above 10kg and up to 20kg ú15
MISSING PRESUMED WIPED
Those of you who are over forty might remember a television programme from the late 1960Æs entitled White Horses, more familiar will be the tune White Horses that accompanied the programme.
The original programme was made by Yugoslav / German Companies in German. The BBC had a London company dub the programmes into English and add the theme tune White Horses.
The series was repeated several times; until the British Public gave the opinion that they did not want to see any more Black & White television shows if they were paying a colour television licence fee.
The BBC do show an odd excerpt of the programme at times in various nostalgia slots. It now appears that although they still have a record of some of the episodes still existing in their vaults, they are missing. As it was in black & white the chances are that they have just been junked, unless a collector has an odd VHS or Betamax tape from when the series was last shown.
What still exists however, are the episodes in German, which are available on VHS at Ç50 per episode. IÆve purchased one, the quality is very good. However it is still in German and the music is the original and missing our White Horses theme tune.
What might exist are audio recordings taken from the television in the 1970Æs. One audio recording of a single episode has been found, this will soon be married up to a German tape. I myself have to admit that years ago I did have a full collection of audio reel tapes of the episodes, but when I purchased my first video recorder in 1979 (cost wise around the price of a good second hand car), I got rid of the audio tapes, my thoughts were that the series would be repeated again on the TV soon and I could get a video recording.
Please have a look and try and find some more audio recordings.
MINEÆS THE JAG
IÆve just been sent the latest brochure and price list for the latest Jaguar S Type. Someone must think that they are dealing with a rich lord.
Some of the interesting extras one can add as single items. Rain sensing wipers ú125, foot mats ú80, front cup holders ú35, rear cup holders ú85, Power wash ú250.
Now for ú250 for the powerwash I expect the whole car to be cleaned, I hope itÆs not just the head lamps.
COMING NEXT MONTH
Lots for the Jan sale are now starting appear, so far an interesting batch of WWI ChildrenÆs comics are piling up. Looks like a run of Gem, Magnet, Scout etc. Watch out for the Jan Sale catalogue. Start Saving Now.
COME TO BOURNEMOUTH
Nice clean empty beaches, well that was how they looked like during the Labour Visit last month. With the delegates all behind the barriers and razor wire, the beaches were nice and empty.
Come to Bournemouth during November and have a holiday. Much better than having to lug your suitcases round the airport. As for language problems, there is no need to bring a phrase book with you as many of the staff in cafes and eating establishments do speak some English.
As for money, most places will take credit cards, but cash is also accepted. When changing foreign currency, the local exchange rate for currency on the streets is $5 to ú1 or Ç8 to ú1, other rates are available at banks or bureau de change, but they may request to see your passport.
Bournemouth is proud to announce the following information. The driving time from Manchester is 3hrs 51min (should your plane land their instead of Hurn), the population is 163,400, there are 57,686 males of working age, the average price for a detached house is ú247,928, the wage for a senior accounts clerk has gone down to ú16,500 pa, last year the airport that serves the local community had 368,204 passengers, Bournemouth has 90 firms employing more than 100 workers, the target during third month of the second year of the twelve year plan was exceeded by 65% in the production of beer bottle stoppers, and by 85% in re-sharpened razor blades.
Bournemouth has many interesting sights and activities; we hope you will enjoy your visit.
CHILDREN NOT ALLOWED TO PLAY FOOTBALL AT SCHOOL
This would have been something I would have loved to hear when I was at school, having to kick a sodden leather football around the field for an hour or so was the last thing I would want to do.
Now in modern times teachers are advised, that due to the change in climate due to global warming, children should not be allowed to play football, as the ground is too hard. There is a fear that the children might fall over and hurt themselves, the local councils do not want to be sued by parents (have I not heard this before somewhere). My advice would be to tell the school caretaker to go and run water from the hose on the pitch for a couple of hours the day before.
Note: This last action is not possible as the local councils have abolished school caretakers and put the maintenance of schools out to private contractors. There will now be a six month period whilst the contract and tender documents are drawn up.
Go forward to December; a new contract for the drying out of the pitch will now have to be issued. When the original contract was drawn up, it was put on a monthly basis for the watering of the pitch. Someone forgot to mention that school playing fields do not need to be watered between November and June.
The local council is now been taken to court by the local water company for excessive use of water, this is above the agreed amount that was in the contract signed at the start of the year.
Great Britain is currently enjoying a wonderful period on compensation claims, first it was injury claims, now Royal Mail have jumped on the bandwagon, or perhaps one should say have fallen off their trolley.
If your first class mail is late by three days or more, simply phoning them and making a complaint will gain you twelve first class stamps. They will need to know verbally when the item was delivered, where it was sent from and on what date, other than that there will be no forms to fill in. Seems a very easy system, until you realise that all you need to do is leave your envelope a few days then ring up, the letter is now late. From January there will be the offer of a higher level of compensation if you return your envelope.
The ability for the Royal Mail to lose more than ú1,000,000 per day will possibly increase.
An easy way to stop fraudulent claims will be to issue each postal delivery person their own date stamp, as they get to your door postmarking each item with the delivery date would solve all suspect claims.
Some Americans are now starting to get a little tired of the compensation culture; they find their lives are affected when they need help.
I found a very interesting book entitled The Lost Art of Drawing the Line ISBN 0-375-50422-2 published in 2001.
It gives examples of where people have been injured and medical staff will not treat them if the person is not actually in their own medical establishment. It gives the case of where a person collapsed outside an emergency hospital. The staff knew the person was injured, but would not venture out to attend to the person for fear of getting sued if there were any complications.
Children injured at school are finding a full medical emergency is requested even for the most minor injury or bruise, the parents of the child are then faced with the bill for this excessive treatment and are forced to sue the school for allowing the original injury to take place, this might be to gain extra funds for the actual injury, but in many cases it is to cover the cost of treatment, where if common sense had been used a small sticking plaster costing a few cents would have solved all the problems.
The book goes into many other matters of the compensation culture. In the USA many managers in office departments are black, had they been white they would find later on they would be promoted higher up the company. In an effort to try and show that there is no colour discrimination in American companies, many lesser staff who are black are given manager positions, this proves that there is no discrimination.
Certain leaders of Great Britain might find this book worth reading. It could show where we will be in ten years time. If I can give one ray of hope, this period will be down to five years if we allow the E.U. to get at any more of our regulations.
As to the author of this work itÆs Philip K. Howard, must be a fine chap.
NEW UNION RULES
One of the rules introduced by Labour that the unions want to see changed is the right of employers to dismiss workers who refuse to return to work after eight weeks on strike. Sir Bill Morris branded the eight week rule ædisgracefulÆ. I think he is right, eight weeks is far too long, employers should be able to dismiss workers after one week on strike.
BOURNEMOUTH TAXI JOURNEY CUT BY CENSOR
An episode of Till Death Us Do Part was shown on one of the satellite channels a short while ago, Alf and family were going on holiday to Bournemouth.
There was originally part of the story where Alf gets into a taxi at the railway station and is taken on a rather over long journey by the taxi driver.
During the journey the taxi driver, who is of a certain faith, mentions to Alf about Bournemouth been run by Jews for Jews, this is in humour as it is taken in the story that Alf and the taxi driver are of this faith.
In the episode recently screened this section was completely removed. The episode has only the part where the taxi driver slightly apologies to Alf over the Jewish matter, pretending that during the journey that he did not recognise Alf as Jewish.
After a very poor tip, Alf soon finds that he has really been taken for a ride by the taxi driver, over the short actual distance between the railway station and the hotel.
The question I have to ask: was the scene removed by the demands of the Local Bournemouth taxi drivers, or were other very influential groups of Bournemouth residents from the East Cliff area the deciding factor.
Did cutting this scene allow a few more adverts to be shown?
A hotel board of a very famous hotel in Bournemouth starting with the letters Comà. Was shown as where Alf was staying, the hotel may be still reeling; the hotel is not run on the same lines as shown on the old episode.
NOISE IN BOURNEMOUTH
We are sorry if you encounter extra noise during the viewing, this is due to the helicopter gunships in the sky above us, our small chine acts as funnel for the noise. The head of Dorset Police tell us ôWith many of the sea front car parks closed, this will not affect trade or holiday makersö û too right nobody in their right mind would want to come anywhere the party that the Dorset Police are throwing.
The local police will arrest any person found eating their cheese sandwiches.
If you see a hungry policeman on the streets of Bournemouth, give them a sandwich, (but don't mention the cheese), IÆm sure it will be appreciated.
However the few well fed police will probably arrest you though.
Sent in by a customer
POST CODE POLICE
A collector in Livingston, West Lothian owes some money to a dealer. He is leaving for his holiday, and in a hurry writes a cheque, sticks it in an envelope but cannot remember the dealer's postcode, which he omits. In every other aspect the address is correct. Two weeks later the envelope and cheque are returned to him with a message from the Post Office that the letter cannot be delivered as it does not have a postcode.
"From scenes like these Auld Scotia's grandeur springs".
CHRISTCHURCH RESIDENTS WILL BE MADE TO PAY FOR LOOKING AT BOURNEMOUTHÆS BEACHES
Following the decision by Bournemouth Council to Declare UDI and remove themselves a short while ago from the authority of Dorset Council. A few problems have occurred over the funding of amenities, as Bournemouth is now a borough once again entirely on its own.
There have been questions asked by Bournemouth & Poole residents of why they have to pay to visit a museum in Christchurch, that currently has a display of advertising items many of which relate to Bournemouth.
They could understand if everyone other than local Christchurch residents were made to pay, but it is only Bournemouth & Poole residents that are charged. All other persons living in any part of Hampshire or Dorset are allowed in free.
Persons living in Bridport and Emsworth who have as their only contribution to this area is buying stuff in a local Bournemouth auction, can see the treasures of Christchurch entirely free, persons from Bournemouth who have helped Christchurch in times of need are been forced to pay.
It is believed that to claim free entry to the Red House Museum in Christchurch it is necessary to take along several forms of proof that you do not live in Bournemouth or Poole.
In retaliation it has been suggested that the Council of Bournemouth now charge Christchurch residents for the pleasure of looking at either the miles of golden sand on BournemouthÆs Beaches or looking at the clean swimming water that resides off the beaches. There will of course be a charge made if a Christchurch resident even places one toe in the water, having now used three amenities.
Persons living in Christchurch that either travel into Bournemouth or through it on their way to work will be also charged by the head.
One of the reasons for the need to raise money is that some of the departments in Bournemouth are almost broke. Are there are now severe shortages in some of the Service departments in Bournemouth Council.
The local aviary will possibly have to close as the council can no longer afford the seven packets of bird seed that it takes to feed the small birds in the lower garden each week.
The rubbish collections on Bournemouth beach will also be cut back, the solution for saving money will be to let the rubbish accumulate into larger heaps before it is collected. There is a discount it seems, if a larger one off collections of rubbish is made.
This cutback will be noticed in October after the Labour Party have left town, or whatÆs left of the Labour Party when the Scud missile has finished with the BIC (Bournemouth Internment Camp), where the Party will have their conference at the end of September. All persons coming into Bournemouth will be stripped searched if they venture within one mile of the BIC during the Party Conference, which for security reasons will start from 8th September and go on to 3rd October. Both these dates avoid our sale dates, which was a demand I made before Tony and his gang were allowed to book the BIC venue.
Bournemouth residents would like it be known to all terrorist groups that the big shed like building near the pier on the seafront, which masquerades as a cinema, is really the headquarters of the entire British Government and is full of very expensive security equipment and security information that would be impossible to replace. Could they please give enough time for it to be evacuated of members of the public.
Free Train Ride for Beggars
It appears that there are certain official groups that have the funds to pay for beggars to leave town. A free one way train ticket is now available for any beggar to leave Bournemouth, all that is required is a promise not to return.
What an ideal way of visiting Swanage, when the British Rail line (or what ever they are calling themselves at the moment) connects with the Swanage Preserved Railway, the local beggars will be able to go to an interesting seaside place to ply their trade. I can even recommend a shop where the kind owner might give them an apple.
Get Rich Scheme No. 34865
Had a fax come through telling me I had won an award in the El Gordo Spanish Sweepstake Lottery, all I had to do was to phone a man in Spain, (possibly having a credit card to hand when I phoned might help a little). The offer seemed to be so genuine; I might have been tempted The date they sent the fax was 19/6/03. It was just a shame that you needed to telephone by 27/5/03.
What a shame they canÆt get their schemes to make money a little more up to date. I wonder why as it is a Spanish lottery the prizes are given in US $ amounts. Must be really aimed at fleecing the Americans. Not really a problem then.
A Puzzle Near Oxford Circus
Mr Rodney Langham left his Hampstead home in Clissold Avenue. The Ambassador he worked for had a Royal connection and was often to be seen in Sloane Square, although most thought Primrose Hill was as far North as he had ever been.
(the first person to solve the puzzle gets a years free subscription.)
If you need a clue 580, 435, 730, 607, 709.
A Quarter of Boiled Sweets
Those of you who are over thirty will possible remember going into your local sweet shop and been allowed to purchase a quarter of unwrapped sweets.
These would be taken from a large jar and the amount you requested would be weighed out in front of you. Depending on the mood of the person serving you it might have been that you got the exact quarter, or occasionally the odd extra sweet might fall from the jar into the weighing pan. If there were other people to serve often the extra bit of weight was left in the pan and the whole pan full would be tipped into a bag and your money taken from you. To annoy a member of staff it was best to ask for two ounces of two different sweets if money was scarce.
The quality of the sweets varied; if you were purchasing sweets from a nearly full jar then all were loose and fresh. When the jar was half full on occasions some of the sweets might stick together, it was opportunities like these that allowed the extra sweet or two to get into your bag. Often when there was only an inch or so of sweets left in the jar, the shop keeper would transfer the lot into the mixture jar.
Every child and shop had a different name for the contents of this jar, some shops might possess two jars, one for the luxury wrapped sweets and another for the questionable unwrapped boiled type. The price of this mixture was often at the rate of the very cheapest boiled sweet that was on offer.
It took a keen eye to watch the jar and predict when something really nice would appear in the next quarter.
Due to modern methods of sale the loose unwrapped boiled sweet has more or less disappeared except from the few die hard sweetshops. It is possible to buy boiled sweets but these are normally a more bland type sealed up in polythene bags that are almost impossible to open.
The tongue rasping bitter lemon drop and the yellow and red cubes of hard boiled sweet is something that most children of today will never experience.
However we can relive those memories as a company is selling boiled sweets on the net and by mail order.
If I was strange as a child it was my assortment of favourites. If the mixture jar did not seem to be worth exploring then the odd choice I made would be something from the following list.
Aniseed Tablets, Army & Navy, Acid Drops (note this was different to the other type of acid used by the older boys in the 1960Æs), Aniseed Rock, Sarsaparilla Tablets, JakemanÆs Throat Lozenges etc.
I did also go for the more normal teeth rotting assortment that most of my friends chose, but there was always the risk the bullies would be more interested in these more normal sweets, I was generally left alone if I was armed with my normal assortment together with a few Victory VÆs for good measure.
All these wonderful things I can remember are available from æA quarter ofÆ, Chiltern House, Waterside, Chesham, Bucks, HP5 1PS. 01494 776870 or if you are on the net then go to www.aquarterof.co.uk
One nice touch, although the sweets are wrapped in a plastic bag to keep them fresh during transport, the bag is inside a traditional white paper bag, a very nice idea.
In case you think that the firm and yourself might be arrested by the Metric Police for wanting to deal in such an illegal substance as æA QuarterÆ all sweets are supplied in units of a quarter of a Kilogram, or to put it another way, a bigger bag of sweets.
As to the selection I purchased, IÆm starting to like Poor Bens. For those that have come South from across the border, many Scottish lines are stocked. Also for other foreigners they sell Bassetti, (ok itÆs a joke).
ON THE SATELITE
Hunting through the foreign channels, one often finds English and American programmes that are dubbed into the native tongue. This month I found the American film æMusic for MillionsÆ on a German station. Where Margaret OÆBrien had a fairly light sounding voice the dubbed version sounded like she came from a member of the East German Young Girls Wrestling Team. On the Polish channel there was the English programme of æHale and PaceÆ, Due to economic reasons few things are fully dubbed on this channel. As the programme or film progresses, what seems to be a continuity announcer in a rather basic tone gives a full translation, often the original language together with the English laughter track can still be heard. ItÆs a good bet that if Hale doesnÆt get all his money he will be sending the boys round to the Polish T.V. station as in effect they used both his image and his voice. FAKE RUBBISH BAGS
As well as fake watches and designer clothing, Westminster Council in London are currently on the search for persons who are producing fake rubbish bags. Westminster Council grab ú5.8 million pounds from local traders through the sale of their bags. It appears that some naughty people have been manufacturing bags and selling them to traders to put their rubbish in at less than the current price of 84p.
The council have found an easy way to tell the fake bags from the genuine article, the fake bags are made of a slightly stronger plastic and do not split when a reasonable amount of rubbish is put inside. A hit squad of officials is touring the borough and questioning any trader whose bag of rubbish is in good order.
LEGAL RIGHTS FOR GAY COUPLES
The new act that will give full rights similar to married couples to gay couples, has deeply insulted one group of citizens. Currently those persons who are leading double lives either as cross dressers or as schizophreniacs, who believe that they are two people, feel insulted that they will not be officially recognised as couples.
However Local Council Officials that were refusing the reduced rate of Council Tax of the single person discount, having staked out several homes where a cross dresser was in occupation, having seen both a male and a female person entering and leaving the premises will be made to apologise if the person affected is able to come to the offices and prove that they are really two people. For any person not able to prove this, it will be legal if they are refused the single person discount to claim any benefit available for two persons.
THANKS FROM A CUSTOMER
One buyer from last month who managed to spend possibly more than his regular treat, sent the following words. ôThanks Phil, Skint, but delightedö. ItÆs nice to know that we have customers who appreciate the goodies we offer.
IS IT THE CHEAPEST IN BOURNEMOUTH ?
We would like to compete with the Trotter Empire that can sell the latest Harry Potter hard back at ú6.45, but unfortunately we do not have space to store that lorry load of books that sort of fell off the M25. However we do possibly have the cheapest offer in Bournemouth of a copy of ôHarry Potter and the order of the Phoenixö.
Book seems kosher, but as yet this has not been confirmed. Reserve price ú7. Might even one day become a collectors item.
Last MonthÆs Translation
We had two correctly identified captions of the French words that were in the postcards on the cover of the May catalogue.
The gist of the text was the small boy saying to the little girl that using their fatherÆs boots would get him more presents. It appears that the French have a strange custom of putting gifts in shoes. In this country we use either stockings or the greedy children use pillow cases.
The second illustration has the caption ôNo, I am not lost; I am looking for a log for Christmas.ö
First prize of six months of PhillipÆs Jottings to Mr Emmerson. Second prize of twelve months of PhilipÆs Jottings to Mr Carter.
To the other people that sent in translations for the picture that showed the small boy with his hand down the front of his trousers. The word ælogÆ was badly translated by most. He is not saying that he wishes to show off his stick to the lady, or other versions of the same theme.
A Concorde for Branson
British Airways have missed a great opportunity of forcing Richard out of the aviation industry. Instead of refusing to sell the two Concordes to Branson they should have given him those white elephants and watched his empire crumble under the upkeep and insurance of the beasts.
The aeroplanes might be in good order and have only done a minute amount of hours by aviation standards, but they cost too much to run and maintain to be economic.
If he was given the whole fleet with all the spares, it would not be long before only one Concorde was left running; the cost of retooling for many of the parts that would need replacing within a few years would be massive, cannibalising the rest of the fleet for spares would leave only one Concorde and you canÆt run a full service with just one aircraft. Unless it is just for odd flight experience trips for people to see what supersonic flight is like.
Might be worth asking the Americans if they are interested in the fleet as a job lot. There was some interest in getting Condcordski up and running a short while ago.
The cost of insurance if he could get it, over terrorist matters would be far too much to fund; possibly having the pride of oneÆs fleet destroyed by a rocket was one of the reasons why BA chose this moment to give up on the service.
There is a place for Concorde and that is in a museum, and there is a jet museum up at Hurn, better asks them if there is a shed free.
Now if someone does want to get an aircraft back in the sky, I would like to see the Vulcans flying again, they really did put the **** up you if they flew over at low altitude. Just sending a fleet of Vulcans to fly over the soldiers in Iraq would have brought an end to the conflict within days, and made the Americans surrender as well.
Pink Bus for Pupils
Our local Yellow Buses had for a short while banned every pupil of one local school from using their buses due to the poor behaviour of a few pupils.
On the Isle of Wight a firm had similar problems, their solution instead of banning the children, was to give them a bus painted pink. Apparently travelling on a pink bus is the worst thing that can happen to a child.
The company has also removed the heaters from the bus to make it a little uncomfortable for the brats, what use this will do in the summer I do not know, I would have left them in and turned them fully up during the summer and only removed them during the winter.
TodayÆs children are street wise though, during the summer a few extra windows would get smashed for better ventilation and in the winter months as most children have lighters, a small bonfire of an odd seat could soon be arranged. Bringing a can of blue paint to make round blobs on the outside might also improve the appearance of the bus. It would be æCOOLÆ to go to school on a pink bus with blue spots.
As for school transport whilst I was at school, we did not have to bother damaging or causing a nuisance, the drivers could quite happily wreck the coaches on their own without any help from us, There seemed to be a competition between the drivers to wreck the speedometers by forcing the coaches to go at over 60mph downhill (it was a ôBö road). We only crashed once; the coach was repaired within a few days and returned for more torture.
Italian Children to Speak Good English
On the European Astra satellite as opposed to the Sky satellite, there is an educational Italian channel broadcasting English language programmes aimed at the five to eight year olds.
Unlike foreign language programmes that we might be used to, the Italians have made learning a second language fun.
Parts of the programme use what I would call rather repetitive verses, but it does sink in. Some of the tunes are even slightly hypnotic. It might be worth the BBC having a look at these programmes, to see if the schoolÆs programmes could be made more interesting. IÆve even managed to get some of the staff to sing along with the programme, else they donÆt get paid.
Out of the archives IÆve just obtained an old BBC science programme of the early 1970Æs on a new method of teaching science. It appeared that teaching science in a more practical format was the way ahead; I wonder what happened to the idea of Nuffield Science.
Caution Snails at Work
Last monthÆs record of slowness of post went to the sender of a bid form in a correctly addressed envelope with a single first class stamp and posted in England that took 17 days, runner up was 10 days in the post.
Congratulations have been passed to the Royal Mail by the senders of the mail who missed out on several lots.
If You Are a Dealer
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