Ravings From The Bog


All Aboard!
October 1, 2009, 7:45 pm
Filed under: Thoughts

This blog ends today. Time away from the computer has allowed me time to look at things differently. After almost 55000 hits, I’ve decided to refresh things and start a new blog called This Sedentary Life.

Anyone who uses RSS to read this one can pick up the flow over there (if there is anyone! – No idea how to set up Feedburner unfortunately.)

Thanks for reading!



Failed, sort of!
October 1, 2009, 12:23 am
Filed under: Family, Life, Stress, Thoughts, Work Life Balance | Tags: , , , ,

Mr Blobby

Yeah, it didn’t work! Still 276lbs… At one point during September was 272, but also at one point was 280!

On a positive note though, found more time to read, definitely felt a lot less frazzled and more relaxed and had more time to spend with Sophie (8), who is my personal de-stresser. (previous post)

What else happened in September?

Got an exercise bike, a rowing machine and dusted off my mountain bike. I was off for a week and had a great time traveling down to Mayo and Galway, took oodles of photographs and had my quarterly review which went very well, thank you! So not all bad news. Also, decided on a new blog format which you can find at This Sedentary Life. Not a terribly optimistic title, but we’ll see what happens on the exercise front over the coming months. ;)



Sabbatical

749px-I-276.svgI’m taking the month of September off. Not off work, but off Twitter, Facebook, Tumblr, WordPress, Flickr and the many other distractions that have kept me from proper family/personal time over the last few months. I’ll still be checking my email and perhaps be online for five minutes at a time checking bank balances and cinema times, etc, but that’s it.

It’s an experiment of sorts. I tend to be easily distracted and lose myself for hours on teh internets which has created not a little tension at home, but I also feel that my thought processes are actually being affected by the flittering about that this fine Apple iMac allows me by having so many programs running at once!

So, from tonight at midnight, I intend to use the time saved to do the jobs that have been left undone, to spend more time with my wife and kids (!) and to fix various broken things, and cut the grass rather than pay somebody to do it twice a month, and get moving on a number of things that the “internet inertia” has stopped me from doing.

Now, I could be smart and say that the graphic above represents me “hitting the road” from the internet, but I’ll be honest instead and admit that I weigh 276lbs. My intention in being that honest is to force myself to be looking for a sign for Interstate 256 to post on 1 October – in other words, get off my arse and get some exercise. I intend to take seriously the idea of eating properly (not just my Branflakes) and losing some weight and keeping it off.

I have various other similar intentions for the month of September, regarding work, finance, leisure time, etc.

Wish me luck!



Disgusted.
August 25, 2009, 10:51 am
Filed under: America, Entertainment, Movies, Society, Taboos, Thoughts | Tags: , , , , , , , ,

Marilyn MonroeI am disgusted by the recent sale of a burial plot directly above that of the actress, Marilyn Monroe. The original owner gave instructions before he died that he wanted to be buried face down “facing” the interred remains of Marilyn Monroe – what sort of sick bastard thinks this way? He and his wife were cut from the same cloth obviously. She moved her husband’s remains to make money and has used the actor’s allure to feather her own nest in a mercenary and disgusting fashion.

What will happen in twenty or thirty years? Will another widow decide to sell the new buyer’s plot and make a few more dollars? Will the remains of Marilyn Monroe become a macabre attraction for perverts beyond the grave? From what I’ve read, Marilyn was vulnerable in life and now she’s vulnerable in death. If I had enough money, I’d buy the plot myself so that it would remain undisturbed in perpetuity, rather than become a revolving door of disrespect.

The burial vault above the remains of Hollywood film star Marilyn Monroe has been sold for more than $4.6m (£2.8m).

More than 20 offers, starting at $500,000, were received for the space, located in the Westwood Village Memorial Park in Los Angeles.

The vault had been advertised on the auction website eBay by the widow of the current occupier.

The name of the buyer has not been revealed – except for the initials OS, used to take part in the auction.

The space was auctioned by the widow of the man buried – face down – above Monroe, to raise enough cash to pay off the mortgage on her Beverly Hills home, the Los Angeles Times reported earlier this month.

His remains would be moved sideways to a neighbouring plot to make room for the new occupant, said widow Elsie Poncher.

Her eBay advert was entitled “Spend eternity directly above Marilyn Monroe”.

Richard Poncher died 23 years ago at the age of 81.

The Westwood Village Memorial Park is the final resting place for many celebrities, including Dean Martin, Natalie Wood, Truman Capote and Farrah Fawcett.

The space next to Monroe’s vault was sold in 1992 to the publisher of Playboy magazine, Hugh Hefner, for $75,000.

BBC News



Good Weekend

ef75-300_is_usmI have had a pretty good weekend. I treated myself to this little beauty on the way home from work on Friday. The weather being what it is at the moment, I haven’t had the chance to use it at all, but I’m hoping to get some practice shots tomorrow as I am off work. It’s a Canon 75-300mm IS USM lens. I have a Canon 350D DSLR that I haven’t been using much lately as I’ve been bored with the 18-55mm standard lens that comes with the body and I’ve been using the Fuji Finepix A5800 much more (see the Flickr link to the left of this post). I’ve always thought that Jessops were pretty expensive but having priced this lens in various photography mags and on Amazon, I got it cheaper at Jessops.

What else happened over the weekend? On Saturday, apart from the usual workday, three things.

I got a telephone call from a friend telling me she’s expecting a baby next March. I am delighted for her and really pleased that she took the time to let me know.

I also ran into my aunt and uncle in work and I haven’t seen them in a few years. It’s mainly weddings and funerals in my family but I’m always delighted to see family I haven’t seen in some time. My uncle has been made redundant after thirty years with Easons – I didn’t know this when I started talking to them – which is really sad. It would appear that Easons made some unfortunate investment decisions and as a result have moved from a very strong position in the Irish and Northern Irish markets to being perilously close to the abyss. They saw my picture in a mail-shot brochure advertising the recent changes in my store and decided to try it as a result. They’re in a strong position so there are no worries from that angle but I can imagine how I’d feel in a similar situation.

A few hours later, I’m heading towards the staff restaurant and I recognise a face I haven’t seen in at least twenty five years. He recognised me too – we both had a “double take”. He is the older brother of a girlfriend I “courted” from 1981-1983. We spent twenty minutes talking about old times and catching up on family news. His GRANDCHILDREN were running about while we were talking. Last time I saw him he was twenty two! He introduced me to his wife and I gave him my mob number. Really nice to see him!

Today, the news is good also…

My daughter’s boyfriend has returned home to Sussex after two weeks staying in our house. I finally get my house back.

I made a decision today to sell my Land Rover. More to follow on that one.

I went to see Inglourious Basterds – lots of hype about this movie, most of it true. Enjoyable, but as I’m not really into fantasy cinema, I cannot enthuse about it too much. As I described it on Twitter earlier this evening, it’s like a story from Commandos magazine that’s been written by someone on crack!

Lastly, my friend @Braziel re-blogged on his tumblr page this evening a post by Merlin Mann. It inspired me to get the laptop out and write something, anything, as I’ve been neglecting this blog for some time. The link is at the bottom of this post. It’s worth a read. I love Mann’s directness and the passion in his writing. I’d love to write something with such emotion some day, but for the moment, you’ll just have to put up with this!

Braziel\’s Tumblr



CupCakeCampNI
August 16, 2009, 1:49 am
Filed under: Belfast, Blogging | Tags: , , ,

CupCakeCampThe long-awaited CupCakeCampNI event took place today at Blick Studios on Belfast’s Malone Road. Despite clashing with Belfast’s visit from the Tallships, the event sold out well in advance.

Twitter pal, @doorofkukondo, (also known as Ciaran Madden) was the organiser of the event and through his energy, drive and enthusiasm, everything went swimmingly. Such was the interest in the cupcake phenomenon, that space soon ran out for displaying the hundreds of cupcakes that the various professional and amateur bakers brought along. Disaster was averted when permission was given to tuck in and space was quickly found!

Freshly brewed coffee was supplied to wash the confections down by @grib and his lady wife, with their @beanandgone business, and the posters (above) were designed and created by @davymac – both top men in their respective fields, thanks guys.

Many volunteers were on hand to support the endeavour, including @goodonpaper, @stuartgibson, @mynameisciara, @Peek-a-Bo0 and @bardsrad et al.



Happy 1st Birthday
July 31, 2009, 12:04 am
Filed under: Thoughts

This blog is officially one year old today, but I’m too tired to write anything this evening so this post marking the event will need to suffice. More to follow over the weekend!




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