Tuesday 29 March 2011

'BS' Time.

Over the weekend we 'celebrated' 'BS' time in Britain.  Nothing like a bit of BS.   And when I say 'BS',  I'm not making reference to 'Behavioural Sciences', 'British Standards', 'Britney Spears' or the one you might be thinking of, 'Bull Shit'.  Although, some might suggest that Britney Spears and Bull Shit are the same thing.
No, what I'm referring to is 'British Summer Time' or as y'all might call it where you live, 'Daylight Savings'.  Now then, 'Daylight Savings' sounds like the name of a bank.  These days, the 'Daylight Savings' bank, might seem more like 'Daylight Robbery'.
And thus, on Sunday, March 27 at 1:00 A.M., the clocks in Britain moved forward, one hour.  This meant that the good folks in North America, were now one hour further behind us.  For two glorious weeks, y'all were one hour closer.  This was something I had to remember when I made my phone calls to British Columbia.  
Anyway, enough of my BS in regards to BS time.  The rest of this boring posting has to do with me receiving another, much to my surprise, award.  Gosh, I'm so not worthy.

Before I go onto the award, here is a photo of my cock, I mean clock and my friend 'Scarecat' who will soon be out in my garden watching over the vegetable patch.

To my huge surprise, I have had the 'Stylish blogger Award' bestowed upon me again, not by one blogger, but by two.  I am deeply touched that the two following bloggers considered me for such a prestigious and yes, much loved award.  Thus I wish to thank  BROWNDOGCBR , a site that is all about the adventures of everyday life of 'Hawk' or 'Hawkeye' the dog.  If you have not visited this pawesome site, please go check it out.  Thank you.
And also to my dear friend Heather at Soundoff  who writes such provocative, thoughtful and highly inspirational stories of hope and gratitude.  If you haven't visited Heather's site before, I would highly recommend that you go and read the stories of this amazing lady.  Thank you.

The rules stipulate that I'm supposed to tell you seven things about myself and then forward this award onto seven notable bloggers.  Now, I mentioned five things when I got this award before.  The rules seem to keep changing.  Anyhow, whatever, this time, I shall not bore you with anything about my shy and humble self.

This time, I going to forward the award on rather differently.  There are just so many bloggers to choose from and it always puts me in a dilemma.  I don't want to hurt anyone's feelings who might have wondered why I didn't include them in my list.  So, because of that, if you grace me with visiting my site, consider the 'Stylish blogger Award, well and truly yours.

Friday 25 March 2011

Twilight In Leek.

It was twilight.  A glowing sun cast reddish hues upon the town of Leek.  In the centre of the photograph is Waterloo Mill,  now converted apartments, once a thriving silk mill.  In the background is the cliff formation known as 'The Roaches'.  

And as the sun dipped over the western horizon, I stood on the hill, not far from my home and I soaked in the beauty of twilight.  Twilight at the end of a warm and sunny day.  The church you see is named 'St. Edwards'.

To the north and the east, the shadows of darkness enveloped the sleepy little town of Leek.  Leek, 'The Queen of the Moorlands' and just a few miles away from the magnificence that is the Peak District National Park.

I looked off into the distance.  The twinkling lights, the remaining embers of a reddish pink sky, were  reminders that is was to time to head home.
I do almost everything on my own.  I sit in the living room, listen to the ticking of the clock, as the pendulum gently sways back and forth, back and forth.  I sit here alone and in between the chatter that torments my mind, I hear the beating of my troubled heart.  Gentle music plays sweetly in the background.  I listen to the sounds and reach for the comfort of a melodic tune.
Soon, I will go to bed.  Another restless night of staring at the waving shadows that dance and play on the bedroom wall.  And I will wonder, yes I will wonder, will the dawn, the calling of the morning birds, ease my worried mind.  Everyday is a new day, a new chance, a new hope that my sadness will end.  And through my darkness, way off in the distance, maybe, just maybe, I will see the flickering remains of my beacon of hope.

Saturday 19 March 2011

Coffee For One.

I went into my kitchen and grabbed my cup of coffee.  Yes, my coffee, a moments distraction from the depressive thoughts that fill my mind.  I've been feeling very sad.  Saddened by recent events in our world where the forces of nature have caused such unimaginable grief, unbearable pain for mankind and the precious creatures of our fragile planet.   I needed to get out, out of the kitchen, out of the house and down the steps.  So off I went, coffee in hand, up the slope to the back of my garden.   Time for a few fleeting moments of gentle reflection amongst the serenity of whispering wind through creaking trees.

I strolled to the top of the garden and looked upon yon further field.  It was early evening at the end of a perfect sunny day.  And above the horizon was that beacon of hope.  Twas the upcoming night of the supermoon.

With my cup of coffee grasped firmly in hand
I look to the skies to understand
Ah, tis the night of the supermoon
And I listen so closely to nature's tune
Supermoon grasp my heart
Tell me our world is not torn apart

And through the denseness of thicket bush, I saw so clearly that supermoon.

And the supermoon cast its glowing light upon a darkened world.

I was back inside and I gazed upon the supermoon.  A moon that was making its nearest approach to our delicate planet in eighteen years.
I sat there alone and had another coffee for one.  I thought about the children with tears in their eyes. 'What has happened to mummy?'  'Where is daddy?'  I thought about the little old lady, bemused and confused, as she wandered through the rubble that was once her home.  I thought of those who are cold, scared and huddled together in temporary shelter.  Devastation, trauma, grief and heartbreak, beyond my wildest comprehension.  I think of those who lives have been shattered by the shaking of earth and swirling sea.  And I think of those who've known nothing in their lives but the ravages of war.  And I cry.

Saturday 12 March 2011

Hello Ogopogo.

I am looking forward, with great anticipation, a trip back to my other home in May.  I shall be visiting my 'adoring fans', back in British Columbia.  One of the places I hope to be visiting is Kelowna, situated beside beautiful Okanagan Lake, in the heart of the Okanagan Valley.  You can click  Kelowna History  to find out more.
Part of the history of Kelowna includes the legend of a lake 'monster' known as 'Ogopogo' or 'N'ha-a-itk' (pronounced Naitaka), by the Salish First Nations tribe.  Naitaka means 'lake demon'.  The name, Ogopogo, was evidently a parody of a British ditty and goes like this: "His mother was an earwig: His father was a whale: A little bit of head And hardly any tail-And Ogopogo was his name."  For further info on Ogopogo or Naitaka, you can click on this link, The Legend of Ogopogo  

Here is a photograph of my son at twenty one months old.  To avoid confusion, the lady is his mother and the green creature is a replica of Ogopogo.  This photo was taken at Kelowna City Park, way back in 1990.

Okay, enough of all this information.  It's time for a 'serious' discussion.  I tire of all the hype surrounded the 'Loch Ness Monster', or if you prefer, 'Nessie'.  Because, as far as I'm concerned, Ogopogo is the most underrated and has been, for far too long, a shy and modest lake monster.
No more, I say, no more.  It's time for Nessie and Ogopogo to 'battle' it out in a neutral lake to decide who is like the most awesome n' stuff, lake monster.  I can see it now as the two slimy beasts go flipper to flipper in a contest to decide, once and for all, who's the mightiest of monsters from the murky deep.
So Ogopogo looks at Nessie and says, 'Hey Nessie, hows it goin eh!?'  A puzzled Nessie responds 'Och aye Ogopogo!  I am the amazing Loch Ness Monster, loved and adored my millions.  Very few humans know who you are and they even made a movie about me!  Beat that!'  To which Ogopogo replies, ' Well, there's a replica of me in a park in Kelowna!'
And thus as the Canadian and Scottish fans cheer on these bitter rivals, the two lake monsters embrace and have rampant, unabashed sex.   Due to this bizarre turn of events, no clear winner was realised.  Although, I firmly believe, if Ogopogo had the inclination, Ogopogo would have kicked Nessie's Scottish butt so hard, that Nessie would have gone back to Scotland and drowned its sorrows in a bottle of the finest malt whisky.
'Ogopogo, the Movie', with the soundtrack that includes, 'Oh No Ogopogo' and 'Here We Go, Ogopogo, Here We Go', will be coming to a cinema near you.

Tuesday 8 March 2011

The Originals Of The Species.

I have had the great honour 'honor' (take that spell check), to have had another award to add to my already bulging trophy cabinet.  You can think up your own innuendoes at this point.  Kelly at PSYCHO CARNIVAL  has very kindly bestowed the The Psycho Carnival Award for Originality upon my shy and humble self, the 'the wee folks' and of course, the pawesome, the pawsitive, Penny the Jack Russell dog and modest internet star!
First of all, I shall talk a tiny bit about Kelly.  Don't let the name of his site, 'Psycho Carnival', fool you into thinking that all his posts have to do with psychotic clowns, sex-crazed plastic dolls or puerile jokes about bodily functions such as cheek-clapping farts and 'butt gravy'.  Oh no, there is so much more to Kelly's site.  For he does variety that relates to several genres.  My good pal Kelly also does serious, thought provoking stories that show a transparent, deeply caring, sensitive side.  In fact, he would be a most worthy recipient of his own award.

Now then, briefly about me.  Right, that's it.

Anyway, there seems to be some kinda' rules n' stuff to go with accepting this here award.  
First- Copy. paste and display the awards upon your blog, if you so desire.  Okay, at the bottom of this blog is all the stipulations

Second-  Second of all, I must pass on the award to some bloggers who I think are the very epitome of originality.
The Manic Chef   I have had the great delight in interacting with this new and very talented, original blogger. Please go over and say 'hi'.  If you don't, I shall  have a major temper tantrum, run down the street butt naked and scream obscenities to my startled neighbours.
Rantings of the Reckmonster   Okay, in fairness, half the time I have no idea what language Michelle, at this varied and original site, is writing in.  Luckily, I have managed to decipher her rantings, thanks to the 'urban dictionary'.  Seriously, she is witty, insightful and puts up some very thought provoking postings.  If you have not already done so, check her out.  Cause she's like totally awesome n' stuff eh!
The S.N.A.F.U. Report    Now this dude is very clever, very original and even does his own videos.  Please go check out 'The Wolf' at this site.  Besides he's Canadian and lives in Vancouver.  That's plenty reason to check him out.
Rot Du Jour    Sam, at her wonderful site, writes original postings.  Some sad, some very funny.  A most talented writer who has been missed from the blogging world.  I'm very pleased to see a recent posting from this delightful writer.

Third and Three Quarters-  Answer this important question:  Ketchup or Pygmies?
I know the answer that Kelly so kindly submitted on everyone's favourite 'notworking' site, 'Farcebook', or 'Fartbook', or 'Fakebook', so I must come up with, of course, an original answer.  Ketchup, obviously.  I mean, you try pouring Pygmies on the fries that came with your 'Happy Meal'.  That would be the same Happy Meal that didn't make you any happier and gives you this uncontrollable urge to sue the red-haired clown, with the big stupid grin, for misleading advertising.

Fourth- Write an original thought (or something that seems like a rare idea) or display a photo for everyone to stare at, in awe, that will cause the peeps to fall down upon their knees and smile with tears of profound realization. Or just say the first thing that comes to mind.

Wow and golly gosh.   I wonder who that awesome dude can be?   What?  That's Gary aka 'klahanie'!  And, before you ask, the blue dangly bit at the front of the hat, is a ribbon....

Fifth-  Give a link to the one who bestowed this award to you.  Okay, I did that right at the very beginning.  So, that's me, just about finished.  

Congratulations to those I have passed this soon to be, much loved, much cherished, much sought after and coveted award.
Once again, I wish to thank Kelly at Psycho Carnival.   Many thanks and in my appreciation to him, I've posted him a sealed jar of Penny's finest farts.  Consider yourself honoured that Penny the Jack Russell dog and modest internet star, would go to so much effort for you, just for you, Kelly.

Below are the rules n' stuff.

First- Copy, paste and display these rules and this award upon your blog, if you so desire.
Second- Give this award to anyone who exemplifies originality, in some way, in their blog.
Third and Three Quarters- Answer this most important question: Ketchup or Pygmies?
Fourth- Write an original thought (or something that seems like a rare idea) or display a photo for everyone to stare at, in awe, that will cause the peeps to fall down upon their knees and smile with tears of profound realization. Or just say the first thing that comes to mind.
Fifth- Give a link to the one who bestowed the award to you.  

Friday 4 March 2011

A Fun, Fair Future?

In 1986, I had a ride on the monorail at Expo 86, the world's fair in Vancouver.

And on Thursday, March 3rd, 2011, I got a glimpse of the same monorail.  Only, this time, it was not Vancouver, but at the Alton Towers theme park in Staffordshire, England.  Which leads me to another 'claim to fame', besides being an undefeated egg and spoon race champion.  My other claim to fame?  Yes, you may have guessed.  I have ridden the same monorail in Canada and England.

So, here I was on a bitterly cold early March morning at Alton Towers theme park.   On this cold and misty morn, I had driven my son to Alton Towers to attend a rather lengthy interview process.  Not exactly thrilled with the idea of sitting in my car for up to three and one half hours, I ventured for a stroll into the sleepy, off-season theme park.
Just outside the entrance, I conversed with one of the employees.  This gentleman was very friendly and most informative about the theme park.  Whilst we were talking, the monorail glided by.  Of course, I couldn't resist saying, 'do you know where the monorail came from?'    To which he replied,  'ah yes, it came all the way from Vancouver and I was trained up by the Canadian engineers to maintain it and drive it.  That was way back in 1987.'  So after a bit more talk about the monorail and the theme park in general, this employee mentioned that he had been at, 'Alton Towers for twenty five years...'  To which I replied, 'well, you really should go home, then.'  He laughed and I laughed.
Now it was time to go for a wander in the virtually deserted grounds. I had never been in the grounds, before.

I proceeded through the entrance and off in the distance, on that bitterly cold misty morn, I saw this magical view.  There before me was the magnificent building known as Alton Towers.

I backed up a little to photograph the towers with the lake in the foreground.  The thirty minutes that I spent wandering around in the grounds of this inspiring place, will be forever, a happy memory.  As I strolled around, I chatted to a few folks who were getting it ready for the upcoming season.  I sensed a pleasant vibe.  If you want a bit more information on where I was, would you kindly click on this link, The History of Alton Towers.  You will note is more than just a 'funfair', so much more.

Thus, I  turned back around and headed back to the entrance.  The bitterly cold weather was getting a bit too much.  Off to one side was this rather interesting setting.  'Once upon a time...' in a magical, enchanting place, I dreamt that the dreams of a young man, my son, would finally get a job.  My son, the victim of a brutal economy where so many of our young find themselves becoming  'a lost generation'.
For two long years, my son has been out of work.  He has tried and tried, but to no avail.  It breaks my heart to see my lad being so down, feeling so helpless and overwhelmed.  He wants to move, live his life, have his own independence.  Instead he is 'trapped' living with me, relying on me, and the stress of it all, impacts us both.  Yet, no matter what, he will know, that I, as his dad, will support and encourage him until that day finally comes.  The day my young man can finally spread his wings and make his statement in that world that lies beyond my front door.
I strolled back to my car and waited for my son's interview to finish.  Two and a half hours had elapsed before he finally got back to my car.  He was cautiously optimistic that a job may come from all of this.  He will be informed within two weeks.
And so we wait, we hope and we maintain that positive focus.  To all of those, the young, the old, the disillusioned, my thoughts are with you for a better life.  Maybe, just maybe, there is a fun, fair future.