I went to bed a little earlier than usual last night and slept like a log. I woke full of energy and raring to go at quarter past two. I then lay awake for the rest of the night whilst Treacle and Pogo played this game where they would sleep for five minutes, then fidget and knock one or the other off of the bottom of the bed. Whichever had been knocked off would then jump back on the bed and walk all over me to get comfortable only to knock the other off the bed five minutes later. And so it went on. I finally got more than five minutes sleep shortly after five o’clock, not long before getting-up time.
Over muesli (I prefer granola) I watched an episode of “The Young Offenders” then had a quick look at the Internet to see if I had missed much overnight. I hadn’t. There wasn’t anything happening on Facebook. LinkedIn was pleased to have found me a connection. Would I like to chum up with Emma Ardley-Batt? Ms Ardley-Batt is a cross-functional marketing professional. Or so I am told. One can’t help but wonder what a “cross-functional marketing professional” is. The longer I live, the more convinced I am that I haven’t the faintest idea what is going on in the world around me.
It turns out that LinkedIn suggested that I might like to befriend Ms Ardley-Batt because she has some connection with Noel McGrath. I have no idea who he is either, but he is something to do with one of the people with whom "er indoors TM" goes bowling.
Once I'd scraped the ice off my car I headed off to work. The thermometer said that the outside temperature was minus seven; it fell to minus eight by the time I' d left Ashford.
As I drove the pundits on the radio were interviewing one of the big-wigs at the distillery where they make Johnny Walker whisky. They aren't afraid of a no-deal Brexit or of export tariffs of forty per cent; any extra costs incurred by taxes and tariffs will just be passed on to the customers. Selling seven bottles of whisky every second means they feel that they can do so.
Personally I can't stand whiskey, but I wonder how many other firms will pass their increased costs on to the general public?
They then wheeled on some Rabbi who blathered platitudes on the "Thought for the Day" section. This chap had come up with what he thought was an amazing idea. Why doesn't everyone try being nice to everyone else for a change?
It's a good idea; you would think someone might have tried it before, wouldn't you?
And then there was an interview with the Foreign Secretary. He didn't inspire much confidence when he was Health Secretary, and as Foreign Secretary he is exceeding the expectations of even his staunchest critics. This morning he was banging on about how some technological gadgets may well make a soft border in Ireland possible (and so save Brexit). The devices he was talking about were purely in the realms of science-fiction and fantasy; it is well established that what he was talking about simply doesn't exist. But to him that was just a piddling detail. In his mind the fact that something doesn't actually exist is no reason not to use it...
I think I would be very good at being Foreign Secretary.
Work was work; I did my bit. As I walked to the car park this evening I saw that it wasn't quite dark. The evenings are getting lighter. You know that you are old when you notice the lighter evenings.
I came home, as did "er indoors TM" who then boiled up a rather good pasta bake which we washed down with a bottle of red wine (and some amaretto) whilst watching the Shaun the Sheep movie. Have you ever seen it? It alone is worth this month’s Netflix subscription.
There were a few squabbles in the night but being ale to retain some of the duvet meant that I had a better night than some I’ve had recently. Over brekkie I watched an episode of “The Young Offenders” in which our heroes stole a tuna. As the criminal element does (apparently).
I hen had a look at the Internet. There was an argument kicking off on one of the vintage Lego groups that I follow (someone was accusing someone else of selling something?). Is there nothing that doesn’t eventually descend into petty bickering?
As I let home I was rather glad to see that the forecast feet of snow hadn't fallen overnight. I scraped the ice from the car's windows and set off toward Tunbridge Wells. As I drove the pundits on the radio were talking about Brexit (as if they talk about much else these days). Preparations aren't going well at all; in fact those whose job it is to implement is seem to be living in cloud-cuckoo land.
With the Prime Minister having spent two years coming up with a deal for leaving the European Union that no one wants, Parliament has told her to go back to the EU and re-negotiate. Amazingly the fact that the EU have said they aren't re-negotiating (under any circumstances) doesn't seem to bother anyone. The Labour party are talking a good fight, suggesting everything whilst committing to nothing. Everyone knows what everyone doesn't want; no one knows what anyone wants.
It amazes me that Brexit is going ahead. I really would have thought that it was time for humanity to pull together and be thinking about a world government rather than splintering into petty nation-states. Mind you the United Nations has declared that this year is the year of indigenous languages ... What utter rubbish. Surely it would make far more sense to have everyone speaking the same language rather than delighting in being unable to understand each other?
When I got as far as Cranbrook I found (as always) there seemed to be some sort of natural barrier there, with snow to the west of the A229 and no snow to the east. There was talk on the weather forecasts on the radio about how large swathes of the country had come to a standstill because of the snow.
In some parts of the world life goes on despite six feet of snow. Presumably this is where they have foreign snow, rubbish, pathetic, weedy, ineffectual snow. One inch of solid dependable British snow is all it needs to bring the UK to a halt.
I got to work, and heard that the chap on the late shift had already phoned in sick. I kept my head down and hid from those who were looking for volunteers to stay late. Presumably someone else was co-opted as I walked out on the stroke of home time, and no one said anything.
As I got home my phone beeped. "er indoors TM" had a better offer for the evening, so once I’d fed the hounds I foraged for my dinner up at the KFC, and spent a rather dull evening in front of the telly. “Prison Break”, “Little Britain”… all good stuff…
Restless dogs made for a rather restless night. I wish they would settle. When I am at home with them during the days they will sleep for hours without moving a muscle. At night they can’t go more than five minutes without having to stomp about and quarrel. I spent much of today yawning, and fell asleep over lunch. I hate doing that.
Over brekkie (granola and alpen) I watched the latest episode of “The Good Place”; a show which started incredibly well, but now isn’t going anywhere really. And then I sparked up the lap-top for a quick look at the Internet. What with a late finish yesterday I didn’t really have time to check my email last night. On Sunday I mentioned that I complained to Tesco about their checking up on my self-service shopping. They’d replied. Apparently they check everyone for the first ten times that they shop unsupervised. I suggested that the people from the complaints department went into a Tesco store and watched these checks being made. I suggested that they looked at the contempt on the faces of the other shoppers watching the people being checked. If they thought I am going to endure being treated like a shoplifter another nine times they are sorely mistaken.
I told them to stick their self-service where the sun doesn’t shine.
I walked up the road to my car. As I turned the corner I saw a huge lorry parked on the double yellow lines by the tattooist studio. The driver was fast asleep in the cab. This boils my piss. Local people can't even pull up on the yellow lines to unload without traffic wardens giving them a ticket, but lorries often park up for the night and no traffic warden wants to know. I know that the traffic wardens would have seen him as they often roam the streets in the small hours; I've seen them after midnight many times.
I posted a piccie of the lorry onto a local Facebook group in the expectation that it might cause a petty argument, but so far there's been no reaction at all. I would whinge at my local Councillor, but the last time I had dealings with her she came over as worse than useless.
Perhaps I should put my money where my mouth is and stand for local office myself?
I went to the local Sainsbury's to get some petrol. I was pleased to see that there were no queues there. The people on the tills made me chuckle. Oh, they were miserable. Had they smiled, their faces really would have cracked.
As I drove to work I became convinced that forty years ago I made a serious mistake when choosing what to do with my life. The pundits on the radio were talking about Nick Clegg. Three years younger than me, he became leader of the Liberal Democrats by generally being non-committal and blathering platitudes. He then became deputy Prime Minister by just saying "yes Dave" (to David Cameron) five times a day. That got him a knighthood, and now he has a six-figure salary (what does he know about running a social media giant?).
Perhaps I should have done something like that with my life?
I got to work; I had a rather good day. I came home again. Once home I was greeted by the wolf-pack. Pogo and Fudge were pleased to see me; Treacle showed me the latest thing she’d stolen from the dustbin.
Once I’d had a scrub I looked up train times for the weekend. It’s Dover beer festival on Saturday; if you’re keen on beer which is far too strong to be sensible, I’m aiming to be there for the start at ten o’clock.
"er indoors TM" boiled up a rather good bit of dinner, and with nothing recorded on the SkyPlus box we took pot luck on Netflix. “Swimming with Men” was perhaps one of the best films I’ve seen for a long time. If you’ve not seen it, it is well worth watching.
I should really have an early night; if only to get some sleep before the dogs declare war; all the battles of which will be fought on my bed.