4 December 2012 (Tuesday) - News
I woke this morning at about 6am, which was something of a good night's sleep for me, and I then lay there for an hour feeling profoundly miserable. I do this most mornings. I wish I knew why. My life might not be perfect, but it's certainly not that bad. Perhaps it's my age - there's apparently a glut of people "of a certain age" who seem to be having the hump at the moment. Once I get up and get going I'm OK, but for the first hour every morning I'm never in a good frame of mind. Being miserable every morning is getting me down (!)
It would seem that my misery will get worse for four more years before it gets better. ho hum....
I fussed my dog, brekkied, and set off to work. having first scraped all the ice off of the car. This morning scraping the ice took some doing. There was also a lot of condensation inside the windscreen which wouldn't clear easily.
The radio wound me up as I drove. There was an interview with a chap who'd been naturalist-ing in Papua New Guinea. He could have given an interesting interview. Instead he wasted my time and TV licence money by demonstrating the difference in the sounds made by two sorts of birds he found in Papua New Guinea. he didn't have recordings of the birds - he did impressions of them. To the uninitiated the two noises sounded very similar to each other. So similar in fact that the bloke was unable to make the sounds appear to be any different. After squawking into the microphone for a few minutes he then assured us listeners that there was a difference if you can hear the actual birds, and that said difference is apparently fascinating.
I wish I could get paid to be interviewed whilst doing an impression of a look-alike of an irate seagull.
There was also an interview with one of the big cheeses from Scout HQ. Regular readers of this drivel may recall that in years gone by I was a cub scout leader. For a boy (or girl) to be enrolled as a member of the scout association they have to make a promise. Part of that promise goes: "I promise.... to do my duty to God......." It could be any God at all - but the potential member had to profess to believe in something to which they might do their duty.
Personally I had a problem asking children to make such a religious commitment when they were so young. After all what eight year old can really understand the concept of what any religion is all about. I reconciled myself to the fact that these children were promising to do their duty to God, and it would be up to the individual to determine exactly what that duty was. The atheist that was me at the time had the clear idea that I had no duty whatsoever to any God, and so I could make the promise with a clear conscience. (Nowadays I'm not so sure).
It would seem that the Scout Association has finally realised the foolishness in trying to make small children commit to that about which they have no clear understanding and are revisiting their entire religious policy. About time too.
Here's some sad news. The Dandy is no more. Today saw the publication of the last ever copy of the Dandy. As a child I used to delight in the antics of Desperate Dan and Korky the Cat. But children today aren't so keen. With circulation down to a mere eight thousand copies the comic is no longer going to appear in newsagents. Apparently it will be available on-line for those who want to pay for it. I can't see how that will bring in the money, but what do I know?
And in another surprise it would seem that the humble text message might be in decline. For the first time ever there has been a fall in the amount of texts having been sent. The amount sent still numbers in the billions, but it is the first recorded fall in text messages. Apparently instant messaging via social networking is to blame for the decline. People would rather use Twitter than an SMS. Which is odd - I can remember the first fruit of my loin having a Twitter account. The novelty soon wore off...