Quote Of The Day

"Victory goes to the player who makes the next-to-last mistake - Chessmaster Savielly Grigorievitch Tartakower (1887-1956)"

Thursday, December 30, 2010

Power Flush...

Wikileaks? Pah! Boiler sprang a real leak this morning. No hot water. No heating. Bucket in hand. Guests arrive this pm. I called a plumber. Busy. So I called another. And another.

Finally I got a booking. He arrived. Fumbled around in his van. Replaced the head of the pump and was gone. He talked about his girlfriend a lot (was it me setting up the video camera that urged his display of heterosexuality?) but now I've got hot water, hot radiators and a £198.32 hole in my pocket. He also recommended I have a Power Flush as I'm suffering from sludge. Missus!

Monday, December 27, 2010

Christmas in Gloucester...

Darren, Stu and I had a wonderful Christmas hosted by the lovely Chris and Hudd in their Gloucester home. We didn't need to lift a finger as the boys were such marvellous hosts.

Over the five days we stayed with them they drove us around, cooked for us, gave us gifts, took us on a walk through a winter wonderland in the snow covered forest of Dean, took us to a rural pub, out for dinner and introduced us to some of their lovely friends both on Christmas Eve in town and again at their house party on Boxing Day. When people have such lovely friends it says much as much about them as it does about the friends.

The Drawing Game went down almost as well as the Christmas cheer.

A perfect Christmas.

Friday, December 24, 2010


Darren, Stu and I are up in Gloucester being hosted by the lovely and gorgeous Hudd and Chris for the Christmas period. So nice to be pampered and especially be such lovely people.

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Tannhäuser at Royal Opera House...

Last night Paul and I went to see the Richard Wagner opera Tannhäuser at The Royal Opera House in London's glitzy Covent Garden.

Based on the two German legends of Tannhäuser and the song contest at Wartburg, the story centres on the struggle between sacred and profane love, and redemption through love.

It's a long opera - three acts - so we had to be in there for a 6:30 start and didn't get out until 11pm. A full 4 1/2 hours of Teutonic fun. It was high church opera with a lots of swelling orchestral flourishes and men stripped to the waist romping around on a bed. Marvellous.
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Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Five cheeses...

A number of years ago I found myself in Schipol Airport looking for a present. I thought that large wax encased cheeses might be a nice idea. Now aren't you just asking yourself how they managed to fill a whole blue one? The picture made it on to Graham Norton a month or so later.
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Monday, December 20, 2010

Friday, December 17, 2010

Scissor Sisters...

On Wednesday night the lovely Paul gave me two free tickets to go and see the Scissor Sisters at the O2 Arena. I took Ian and we had great seats. The show was great and we sang and danced along.

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Thursday, December 16, 2010


For my birthday a few months ago Darren and Mark bought me a couple of tickets to go on a wine-tasting trip around Vinopolis in London's glitzy South Bank. A few weeks ago Stu and I booked our visit and headed off to get tanked. We took the sampling lesson and then worked our way around the sampling tables for six wines, two rums, two absinthes, two whiskeys, two beers and a Bombay Sapphire gin cocktail. Great fun. Hic. We even returned to Vinopolis for Stu's Christmas party a few weeks later. Double-hic.

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Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Last night Andy, Guy, Andy, Tim, Stu and I went out for an Indian meal. Elvis, appalling service and pizza followed. Great fun.

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Christmas @ West Lodge...

Last Sunday Stu and I went over to West Lodge in Upminster to have Christmas lunch with all the Essex gang. Once again Grumpy Santa made an appearance - much to everyone's joy.

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