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Finished watching 'The Vietnam War' last night, big thanks to Benters for the
at 08:58 11 Nov 2017

heads up.

A lot of the footage brought back memories of what I saw on TV at the time but I had never seen clips of the VVAW flinging their purple hearts and silver stars over the clumsy barricade on Capitol Hill before - was that new to anyone else?

I'll be thinking of them along with my recently passed Arctic Convoys uncle and all the people I knew who were bombed by the Luftwaffe when we are silent at eleven tomorrow.

And of the Hillsborough victims today after catching up with Phil Scraton's 'Desert Island Discs', The Sun still has quite a debt to repay there.
at 10:58 31 Oct 2017

I'm expecting Mick to rely on the simple bare necessities tonight...
Eureka! The Messiah revealed, our next manager can only be
at 05:57 30 Oct 2017

Eric Cantona

The boo boys can be manoeuvred down to the front of the stand by the rest of us ready for the karate kid when they get uppity, Phil can be enervated by obscure references to trawlers and seagulls, we'll do well in the National League...

Going back to sleep with an easy mind now.
'In Our Time' this morning was about dinosaurs...
at 12:38 26 Oct 2017

Even Ol' Adenoids has joined the 'Mick Out' camp!

Apparently they grew feathers and turned into birds and that's why the meteorite hit, I might not have been fully listening. Could have been something about playing T. Rex on the right when he should clearly have been the big man in the middle of defence, not sure but I'm taking it as code that Mick is about to fly the coop...
At least he puts Ipswich/Nodge before Wolves/West Brom
at 15:57 23 Oct 2017

But that might just be alphabetical ordering:

“I know what it feels like to play at Easter Road. Getting on the bus, driving down Princes Street, going down Easter Road and getting abuse from the Hibs fans,” said captain Christophe Berra, who will return to the derby fold after an eight-year hiatus. “It’s something a player should thrive on. It’s the biggest game of the season for us.

“I’ve played in derbies down south, Ipswich versus Norwich, Wolves versus West Brom, and I never had the same feeling I did when I was playing Hibs. I was born and bred here, I know what it means to the fans. Tuesday night, under the lights, live on telly – it doesn’t get any bigger for us.

“You need to be fired up, but you have to be controlled in that aggression as well. You have to be clever, you have to be patient. It’s three points but it’s more than that to the fans – and the players,” added the defender, who lost only three of his past 11 capital derbies. “You don’t want to be walking about the city two or three days afterwards taking stick because you’ve been beaten.”

As a diesel driver and hypocritical environmentalist I found this interesting:
at 16:59 21 Oct 2017

Unfortunately a bit inconclusive and not even electric car drivers come out of this unscathed, might be useful also for any of you who are London based and thinking of changing your car.
So are crime rates up or down?
at 15:10 19 Oct 2017

13% up in the last year to June, but improvements to recording of crime may have something to do with it. With a downward trend in murder in figures to 2014 this new increase is particularly disturbing. No doubt blue_oyster will explain it all for us.
at 10:03 19 Oct 2017

I did a wash on Tuesday and, as usual, I turned my socks, shirts and pants inside out because it makes sure that the dirtiest areas get closer to the detergent inside the drum of the washing machine. But as I put a pair of trousers in, been used for gardening so muddy here and there, I wondered why I never turned trousers inside out. Most of a pair of trousers faces the skin on the inside, parts covered by pants and socks being the exception, but tends to brush against it rather than the direct contact of the other garments mentioned.

Also, could be the subject of a board poll this, legs sweat less than armpits, feet and crotch so not so much need to turn them inside out. And trousers are more inclined to get muddy and so on from the bottoms upwards on the outside.

Perhaps I should set up a checklist of my trousers and use it to count when I have washed a pair of trousers without turning them inside out three times before turning them inside out for the fourth wash. Any TWTD posters do this?
Exitbrexit? I'm in...
at 09:00 18 Oct 2017

Edit: I've changed the title from 'Exbrexit' to 'Exitbrexit' as the former sounds like I was once in favour of Brexit and that's not the case. I guess I was non-committal or sceptical at the time of the 1974 referendum, to be honest I cannot remember if I was or which way I voted or if I even voted.
[Post edited 18 Oct 10:26]
'Every time you think [Brexit] can’t get any worse, it does.'
at 08:38 16 Oct 2017

Not a quote from me from the former head of the civil service Sir Bob Kerslake:

Whether you are Remain or Leave there are some interesting points to chew over in the above article, the one I find most intriguing is the view that we are at the moment being ruled by a coalition and we will be whoever wins the next election.

'The Labour leadership, while notionally pro-Remain, really want to leave while the Tory leadership, who are pushing through Brexit, are on the whole in favour of remaining. The Labour leadership has to argue half-heartedly for Remain to hold its coalition together and the Conservative leadership has to argue unconvincingly about the benefits of leaving to hold its coalition together.'

And, oh, the cost -

'We need at least a four-year transition period and we are nowhere near starting proper talks about trading relationships because we need to sort the payment issue out. £50 billion looks like a lot of money but in the scheme of government spending, it isn’t.'

So if you are wondering why that £330m a week isn't being spent on the NHS, well that's three years worth of it right there - at least the transition period is down from the ten years mooted by Deloittes at the start of the year, no mention of the 30,000 extra civil servants they suggested though.

Still, at least we can flounce off and join the other five countries who exist without trade deals.
At least Berra was on the winning side yesterday
at 08:34 15 Oct 2017

Decided that rather make the seven or eight hundred mile round trip to Sheffield I would content myself with a two hundred and ten mile jolly to Dingwall yesterday. Even then I managed to get stuck in traffic for five minutes as the 4892 converged on the Global Energy stadium. And the queue for tickets might even have been into double figures, I apologised to those waiting behind me as the portable terminal to process a credit card had to be brought over from another window as I shelled out £26 for one of the better seats in the house - all the back to row L this time, despite having one of Runrig do a song for them I'm not going to suffer the dismal view from the Jail End again:

Still, a lively song to play before a game and a bit more musical than most football inspired efforts. It was followed by a minutes silence for former Staggies manager Ian McNeill and the announcer firmly requested that we be upstanding for this, unlike a few in recent years this was perfectly observed by both sets of supporters.

Once the game was underway it was obvious that Christophe was struggling to keep pace even with the stop start nature of Ross County's 75% genetically challenged attack and yet his positioning and poise made him the best player on the pitch. I think I rarely noticed him during Town games (that would have needed analytical skills on Phil and Harry From Bath levels I don't possess) but here, and it's true that an ex-Town player is often the focus of my attention at Inverness or Ross, Berra stood out. And perhaps his energy level was a bit sapped by the two full games he had had for Scotland whilst most on the pitch had a fortnight off. He might also be getting away with being more robust in the challenge, a couple of Ross players were left staggieing around for a few minutes. And whilst he did sacrifice a couple of threatening free kicks it was always with a few defenders behind him and nothing more than one brief comment from the ref. When the Ross equaliser came it is significant it was from their left side, the opposite channel to Berra's left leaning central role.

The Hearts supporters, probably less than a thousand, were a noisy bunch and perhaps the loudest I have heard since a trip to St. James' Park last year but don't seem to vary their songs much beyond changing the name of the person accused of self abuse. I sometimes check my phone to see how many minutes have gone, or if the hour is approaching five, I was tempted yesterday afternoon to check if the year was in the 1980s. Oddly, despite being 1-2 up they fell almost silent for a quarter of an hour when their side was reduced to ten men, on the pitch their players seemed not to notice and Ross didn't really put any decent attacks together until the six minutes of added time (though an entertaining game it had been peppered with injuries and a surprising three against three set of handbags given the number of players on a card).

Other than Berra two players caught my eye for differing reasons. Esmael Gonçalves was an always threatening attack force in comparison to the sleepy Kyle Lafferty and scored the opening goal with a great deal of confidence. Named on his shirt as 'Isma' and wearing the number 77 (can't wait for the poster who requests our votes on the best player to have squad number 77) he occasionally dropped back into midfield but mainly exploited turning difficulties in the Ross right side of defence with explosive runs that were surprising given his Reuser like physique and awkward gait when not at speed, perhaps he had used up his tank to explain a substitution midway through the second half.

And in the final half hour Lafferty finally woke up, mainly to play pantomime villain but his upper body bulk and height did also provide the cross for Hearts' sweetly struck winner. And in the final minute he lay on the ground poking his right calf in the air in an attempt at feigning cramp in tandem with another Hearts injury that merely attracted a backward look of scorn from the referee and hoots of derision from the County supporters. You can take the player out of the Norwich but you can't take etc.
[Post edited 15 Oct 8:40]
Anyone been watching Rellik?
at 08:56 12 Oct 2017

I've been struggling with the whole telling a story backwards and whizzing over what you have just seen thing but watched the latest, and I guess penultimate, episode from iPlayer last night and the 'reveal' right at the end was jaw-dropping, anyone else following it and saw that coming?
Brexit: What are the options?
at 08:30 11 Oct 2017

Table halfway down this BBC article gives EU membership as the first option:

Ofcom clear Al Jazeera of anti-semitism
at 08:44 10 Oct 2017

Don't know if any TWTD posters are interested in this kind of thing...

Interesting to see that an Israeli 'mole' sought to 'take down' a high Tory and, for once, Boris makes a useful comment.
Big ol' demo in Barcelona
at 21:41 8 Oct 2017

But no one is going off on one about it like they did last weekend, funny that.

Not that I am looking for excuses for Guardia Civil brutality and I don't think much of Rajoy but I am puzzled about the attitudes that immediately laid the blame for blocking Catalan independence voting on the EU:
China's rising stars - all getting on...
at 09:49 8 Oct 2017

Struck by how the profiles of these potential Communist party leaders (and therefore probably leaders of the most powerful nation unless the USA can do something dramatic to halt the Trump decline) look like typical company men, all men note. Suited, tie wearing and the word 'youth' must lose something in the transliteration - one became leader of the Communist Youth League at the age of 43, and the eldest is from the Youth wing of the party!

All seems a long way from the pajamas and red book waving days of Mao.
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