Wednesday, June 17, 2009

A bit about me / A lot about you / Holy Cripes chaps / It's EOTWQ!

I've been having a bit of a think about this and reckoned I might try and nip in now and get some questions out for y'all. So deep breath, no looking at other people's papers, spit out that gum at the back and let us play...

1. I am an inveterate procrastinator. Give me an assignment, tell me I have exactly two hours to complete it, leave the room and then marvel at how I spend at least the next hour playing some blinking stupid game on the computer. Or realise that the ironing really needs doing RIGHT NOW. I started in the usual way, with Solitaire, Free Cell and Hearts. That particular habit got so bad that when I was writing my masters thesis I actually had to remove all card games from the computer. With the habit broken I was ok for a while. Then, however, came Mah Jong, then online Tetris, then Electrotank crazy golf, then Little Master cricket (seriously addictive, check it out). Right now, though, it is Yahtzee. I can't go more than five minutes, it seems, without 'just one quick go'. Its definitely not a hobby, I always feel guilty, but can't stop myself. So how do you, rightly or wrongly, always end up wasting time?

2. The next question is a simple one, but one that I've been thinking about for a while, for various reasons. Politically, how would you describe yourself? I'm not looking to judge or expose anyone, but recently I think that political choice has returned to the fore as a matter of great import. Personally I think I am a bit of a mix. Raised in a very casually right-ish area, by very loosely right-ish parents (Daily Mail, odd moments of general disapproval, vote blue by habit), I then studied Drama at university wherein not to read the Guardian was something akin to heresy. My liberal impulses often battle with a mild, repressed form of conservatism that I find eerily comfortable at times... But I also come from a generation (the first, I reckon) who grew up seeing politics shifted ever more toward the centre whilst being mercilessly denuded and goosed by the rise of 24 hour news. As such, amongst my peers, political apathy is something that is not uncommon and it is only now that people are starting to address important questions regarding what they stand for and if - more importantly - there is anyone else who stands for it, too. Obviously we are all here as an indirect result of some kind of liberality, but I'm sure there's some interesting hybrids out there...

3. A quick one, and simple: What is the most significant/important event that you have been present at and witnessed live? I ask this, mainly, because I can't think of anything massively interesting for myself (although will try) but I reckon some of you might have something good.

4. I'm not much of a drinker, but am the kind of person that is always happy to have a drink. I probably drink more than I should, but never in one go, binge-style. I'm actually quite bad at drinking more than three or four and tend to go along quite happily before suddenly and catastrophically having to go home and lie down. Its probably something to do with not wishing to relinquish control (a great deal of my friends claim to have never seen me drunk, such is my instinct to hold it together at all times), but I do remember one New Year's Eve that involved a bottle of whiskey, a stanger's house and me being sick out of a very high window. So the question has three parts:
- Do you drink?
- If so, what sort of drinker are you?
- And what's the drunkest you've ever been?

5. Over the last few weeks I have been cooking more and more, not least due to Mrs Frod's really quite bad morning sickness. Consequently I have had the chance to perfect both my steak braised in red wine (for about four hours) and my seriously mean bread and butter pudding. I make no claims to culinary expertise, but I do quite like being good at a few really nice, impressive things. So, finally, what's your signature, fallback, guaranteed-to-please dish? Let's get hungry....


DarceysDad said...

OK, first of all I want to know how your spying on me beat my McAfee. Your five questions include two exact and two more vaguely similar to those I've been doodling with in Word, waiting for my turn.

And thereby do I reveal part of my answer to Qu.1, but that can wait until later ...


snadfrod said...

DsD - first of all, apologies for beating you to the proverbial punch. I've learned that you have to move fast on these things...

Second of all, as for how I spy, its nothing to do with your computer. Remember that comically large brooch I gave you recently? I must thank you for wearing it so often. *Evil chuckle*

ejaydee said...

I think we could have a procrastinate-off, I was a Minesweeper man, but had to remove it from my last PC, along with SOlitaire, luckily, I never got into Freecell, I've had a crossword-puzzle ("well it's good for the brain isn't it?"), currently it's Sudoku, but I'm quite proud of the fact that I never got Solitaire for my Mac or online Tetris. I also clean my room (it never stops), chuck out old papers ("I need to unclutter to work properly"), check out that article I've never bothered to read, a regular need to go to the bathroom (no. 1), even when I hadn't drank anything was when I realised I'll never beat this.

2. I'm born on the left-of-centre, went further left as any teenager is duty-bound, now I'm more of a pragmatic, refusing to follow blindly my natural political family, but I haven't voted right of centre yet.

3. That's exactly the kind of thing I struggle to remember. I usually have an answer that comes up (like say, the demonstration on the 1st May 2002 between the 2 rounds of the French presidential election), but then might think of another. It's like restaurants, I can never remember most of them.

4. I guess I'm the same kind of drinker as you Snadfrod, also based on an unhealthy need to maintain control. Just the right amount allows me to get a bit more loosey-goosey, one or two glasses of vodka (preferably flavoured) should do it.

There are two episodes of heavy drunkenness, the kind that results in a hangover, always involving the same friend. The first one was while he was stopping by London after having spent some time in Saudi Arabia, knowing him (he's a bit of the antichrist), I took him to one of those clubs in Leicester Square where people actually try to lure you with drink deals in instead of rejecting you. We got a bottle of vodka, I aid I couldn't feel anything, so he got a second one, then, as this girl was typing her number in for me, because I couldn't see the keys on my phone anymore, I felt it. I woke up on my bathroom floor. The second time has been documented on the 'Spill I believe, it was at a country-themed club in Sao Paulo.

5. Pasta in tomato sauce, close to marinara, or potatoes in the pan...

ejaydee said...

Oh and I forgot to mention checking the 'Spill comments every 5 seconds.

gordonimmel said...

Love the picture, Snadfrod, that's my favourite quiz game ever that is.

I thought I'd get in fast with these ones rather than trying to be too celebral. Mainly because that's my answer to No.1.

1. 'I'll just check if anybody answered my comment on the spill from last night/ Any more good suggestions on RR yet?/ I'll just check the weather site to see if this rain is going to stop soon/ I'll just check the Guardian News pages to see if anything earth shattering has happened........etc. etc. etc.'

2.I like to think of myself as just left-of-centre. Exactly where the centre is is another discussion altogether but from my point of view the Labour government has been disappearing over the (right) horizon in hot pursuit of the Tories for some years now. This leaves me with the option of supporting either The LibDems or the Greens (my pencil did literally hover over both in the recent Euro elections).
I'm not party political tho' and wouldn't want to be. I've voted for all mainstream parties in my time (yes, I know what you're thinking but look I was young, I was foolish, I didn't know anything about the world....).

3. Can't think of anything in terms of world wide news stories so I'll have to go with a sporting one. Sunday May 30th 1999 about 4.45PM and yes, I was still there INSIDE Wembley to witness one of the greatest comeback's in sporting history - I think you know what I mean, Snad. Man City were 2-0 down with a minute to go we were condemned to spend another season down with the deadmen in the Third Division whilst that other lot had just committed daylight robbery in Barcelona - then two goals in 5 minutes. I still come over all goosebumps when I think of how I went from utter gloom to utter joy in the nanosecond between the ball leaving Dickov's boot and hitting the back of the net.
Anyway, I might come back with something serious later....

4.I definately drink more than the Doctor would advise but it tends to be spread out so I don't get roaring drunk and even if I do I've the good fortune not to change character when I do and act violently/giddily/stupidly.
Saying that tho' there was the school trip to the south of France when I was 17 starting with some Southern Comfort in the camp, then beers down in the town then wine,then a couple of Southern Comforts back at the camp then staggering around in my undies looking for the toilets, being thrown into a cubicle with my head over the side of the bowl by one of the older lads then sleeping most of the next day, unable to drink for about 3 days and not able to face Southern Comfort ever since. That was drunk!
(P.S. I was thinking of asking this question in my EOTWQ a few weeks ago until I thought it would be a good idea to nick ToffeBoys sporting question).

5.It's what we call 'Yanky Doodle Pasta' in our house or, more properly, macaroni with prawns in a spicy cheese sauce.
Macarini, prawns, chilli (optional), melted cheddar cheese, eggs, tarragon & pepper.
Wins every time!

steenbeck said...

Haha, Ejay and Gordonimmel--when I saw the first question I thought...Hmm, I know one thing we can all admit to! 'Spill/RR addiction.

Abahachi said...

1. Oh dear... Actually I'm pretty good at getting relatively small, two-hour tasks done without much procrastination; my problem is with the sort of long-term project where the deadline isn't for months or even years, so that it really doesn't matter if I don't really feel up to doing anything on the odd day, and there's all this domestic stuff to be done, and it's time for some tea, and must check to see if anyone's commented on my comment, and there's really not much point in trying to get started in the amount of time that's left before I have to start cooking supper - and suddenly there's a month until the deadline and I can't get the thing finished even if I could work solidly on every single day that's left, so since I'm going to miss the deadline anyway and it doesn't really matter too much there isn't so much pressure to get on with things if I don't feel especially inspired... Yup, this is my life, and I really ought to have chosen a different profession; currently supposed to have a book finished by the end of this month, and if I'm lucky I may be able to manage it by the middle of July. I once managed to be nearly four years late with a book, for a succession of reasons, partly domestic crisis and partly getting really good at Final Fantasy VII...

2. Impeccable Grauniad-reading upbringing; father an old-fashioned Liberal, mother a mixture of her Welsh socialist mother and a violent reaction against her Tory GP father. I became the token Marxist in school, and then actually read a lot of Marx, which convinced me both that he was mostly right and that the vast majority of his alleged followers were wrong. Never much for joining things anyway, and was thoroughly put off organised politics for years by the student politicians at university. Joined the Green party briefly, but couldn't afford to keep up the subscription when my PhD grant ran out, and never got round to re-joining. Current situation? Regularly voting LibDem, as the only viable opposition to the Tories down here in darkest Somerset; personal convictions Red-Green or Green-Red, torn between a sense that only a global solution can conceivably save us and a sense that only local action seems to get anywhere. I've actually just applied to join the Town Council, in the spirit of good old-fashioned Trotskyite entryism...

3. Erm... Nope, drawing a blank.

4. I try to confine myself to beer on most occasions, simply because I do have a tendency to drink too much if I get carried away with talking, and beer is (so to speak) self-regulating (plus if it's my home-brew it tends to promote pleasant dreams). Various episodes of excess in the past - nothing dramatic, never did anything especially silly and could always find my way home. Most memorable probably the wedding day, at which I was sufficiently plastered to open a speech with "Thank you all for coming to my wedding...", which Mrs Abahachi will never let me forget.

5. I have a couple of old favourites from college days, which Mrs Abahachi refers to as my 'pulling' dishes (not that they ever worked in that respect): prawn and courgette curry and Mughal chicken curry, both from Madhur Jaffrey, and coq au vin. Real signature dishes, in the sense that they're farther removed from someone else's recipe: pumpkin risotto; salmon and asparagus lasagne; veal in tomato sauce; spicy chicken nuggets with chilli & redcurrant.

debbym said...

1) Well, I'm currently writing invoices, does that answer the question?! I, too, belong to the school of that-essay's-got-to-be-handed-in-by-Thursday-lunchtime-so-I'll-actually-sit-down-and-write-it-Wednesday-3 a.m. If left undistracted in front of a computer I'll just quickly check my email, see if there's a new post on the blog, oh, somebody might just have sent me an email (get the picture?). BC - Before Computer - anything with words would do, just one more chapter of that library book, a glance through last week's paper (oh look, no-one's done the crossword yet), has anyone checked the list of contents on that chutney jar? I guess I'm not alone here!

2) I grew up in the Temple of the Daily Mail, and mine is the first generation of our family EVER to not have Con. blue blood coursing through our veins. I left England soon after That Woman came to power, but Helmut Kohl's Germany wasn't really that different (funny that). Quite Green in a non-car driving, recycling kind of way, but am no longer comfortable with the Green Party over here (consorting with Conservatives, indeed)

3) You mean of the "I'd just bent down in Dallas to tie my shoelace, when this bullet went whizzing past my ear" variety? Nothing, really. Unless you count missing out on the Hamburger Kessel...
It's the mid-1980s and everyone I know in Germany has donned their best handknitted jumper and Palestinian scarf and is out demonstrating against nuclear power. A demonstration out to one of the nuclear power stations near Hamburg got turned back, so a frustrated crowd of people got together for a spontaneous demo in Hamburg. The police fenced all the demonstrators in and wouldn't let anybody out, not even for a pee, not even pregnant women. This started at midday, and it was gone midnight before it got broken up. In the meantime, anyone who had managed to get away was being hunted down by the police. I lived just down the road to where this was taking place, and we had people hiding in our house. The only reason I wasn't at the demo was a misbehaving appendix, which eventually saw me off to hospital...

4) Only have drink in the house for special treats and tend to go OTT when I'm finally allowed out (although 3-(ish) beers are enough for that these days, sigh). I do like a good draught beer/ale and I still really really miss it, after all these years.
Friends recently brought back a bottle of really special Croatian schnapps and I felt it would be rude to turn down the shot they were offering me (I don't normally touch schnapps). Of course, one shot led to another and those little glasses had such an interesting form and I can't actually remember getting home - luckily they only live a few doors down. Don't tell Social Services!

5) I do a simple lemon cake that's very good for picnics. Also, I think I may be the only person in the whole of Germany with Delia Smith's roasted red pepper recipe (garlic, anchovies, cherry toms, basil), that always seems to impress.

nilpferd said...

1. I'm more a salami-style procrastinator, ie "if I lay out my invoices for last year in a nice tidy pile, that counts as having started my tax return and I can go and have a beer on the verandah for the rest of the evening".
However I am the putting-away-clothes-king of this swamp.
2. I vote for the Greens in Germany and I'd say they are the party who most closely match my stance, but in NZ the Greens are socially too right wing for me, so there I go for the Alliance, which is sort of a liberal-social democrat partnership. If there's friction in my stance it normally occurs around economic policy, I'm self-employed but retain my parent's belief that the state should have a high level of social responsibility. The Greens aren't as pro-immigration as I'd like, either.
3. I'll have to cheat here and say personally Mara's birth first, in a global sense the solar eclipse in 1999 second and politically speaking the post World Cup party here in 2006 third, which definitely marked a change in German society.
4. I drink a lot less than I used to, although I've never been sick from it- I tend just to become increasingly aggressive and unpleasant. Unwillingness to relinquish self control is certainly also part of my moderation here, as well as a fairly good ability to realise when I'm starting to feel like shit.
5. A pasta sauce made with herbs and tinned toms, the recipe came from a G2 feature. Even Mara's best friend Carla likes it, and that's saying something.
Hmm, reading that back it all seems pretty dull, which is the reason I didn't retroactively answer Steens qu's last week.. oh well.
Congrats on the impending Frod, by the way.

snadfrod said...

Nice answers so far guys. Responses to come later on, but for now I'm just glad that I'm not alone on question 1!...

snadfrod said...

Oh and gordon - I'm with you on '99. Its nice to be able to pinpoint the single greatest (non-family related) moment of your life, isn't it?...

Chris said...

1. I can procrastinate for ever if there's something I really don't want to do, concentrating all my effort on defining reasons why it's not a good idea/it wouldn't work/it doesn't really need doing/etc. For short term prevarication, I'm in the blog-checking/crossword/sudoku/solitaire camp (although it has to be spider soiltaire). I wouldn't waste my time on silly computer games, obviously....
2. Brought up by post-war parents aspiring to be comfortably middle-class, I spent much of my teenage years arguing with my Tory Dad. When I first had the chance to vote, I chose the Communist candidate and I have since always tried to vote for a mainstream party (i.e. one with a chance of power) who seemed in favour of what I think of as 'socialism'. Such a beast no longer exists in the UK, unfortunately; they all seem to accept that capitalism is the best system, even after the recent crimes committed in its name. I admire the Cuban revolution hugely but have to acknowledge that even this will probably not survive once the US removes the obstacles that both hobbled it and gave it focus.
3. I am old enough to remember where I was when I heard JFK had been shot but I've not witnessed anything so dramatic 'in the flesh'. I doubt you'd classify having seen you-know-who play what is now acknowledged to have been one of their best concerts on one of their best tours as a significant/important event...
4. I find I'm drinking less and less alcohol as I get older. One pint of beer or a glass of wine is enough for me to start feeling dull and fuzzy. And I know I'll feel worse before I feel better. I couldn't do a hangover any more: my last one was about 10 years ago and it took me all day to recover. But that was nothing to the cheap sherry-induced head that I gave myself around the age of 17: not nice at all. Cannabis is a drug I find much more user-friendly.
5. Most of the cooking I've done has been out of necessity, to feed a family, and so I've never taken a lot of pleasure in it. I do, however, do a very tasty combined Napoletana/Bolognese sauce, and a thing we call 'Smelly Chicken'.

steenbeck said...

Aw Nilpferd--answer them! My answers ALWAYS sound dull to my own ears. Maybe everybodies' do?

Japanther said...

yay, here we go again..

1. The 'Spill is just about my only time-wasting vice. I like to be always doing something, although I do count reading a book as "doing something" so maybe i'm self-delusional!

2. I'll go for "very left-of-centre". My folks were and still are Daily Mail reading conservative voters. my dad from the point of view of a self-made man from a very poor family who viewed good hard work as a duty and reserved the right to keep what he earned for himself. My mum I think in an effort to appear a bit posher than we actually were.
Politics in Japan is a complete joke, it is the single most politically apathetic country imaginable, although of course us stupid foreigners are not allowed to vote anyway. If I was in the UK, i'd vote for the LibDems, who always seem to see the sensible side of things.

3. OK, so it's Friday 5th September 1997 around 11pm and i'm in the local with my mates shooting the proverbial, along with the rest of the country, about the following day's funeral for the Princess of Hearts, Lady Diana. Last orders has rung and the prospect of yet another night down the atrocious local nitespot beckons. "Hey, let's go up to the big smoke and see what's happening, it'll be a laugh" I proffered. Surprisingly everyone agreed and after scoring something to...ahem.....keep us awake, we bundled in a car and set off. It was a weird experience, i'm anti-royalist and was no Diana fan , but to see London thronging with so many people yet to be so subdued was very strange. We wandered around Hyde Park and got approached at least 3 times by people trying to score pot (I suppose our scraggly group didn't look like yer typical mourners!) and we didn't have enough to share! When the coffin paraded past there was definitely a sense of something historic going on.

4. I'm not too fussy, but I don't do dark spirits (whisky, rum etc). We have just bottled up this years batch of Ume-shu, which is a Japanese plum alcohol drink, which takes a few months to brew (i'm sure that's not the right word) and we usually drink hot in the winter. I only drink in moderation these days, but the list of lost memories and doing stupid things is a very long one indeed! Although i'm with Josh Homme on the "guilt-free rock'n'roll" approach. If you're gonna go whining about how stupid you were and how embarrassing it all is, don't do it in the first place!

5. I can't cook for toffee! Mrs J rarely lets me loose in the kitchen, if I do it will be something exceedingly simple like pasta or om-yakisoba (japanese noodley things with an omelette on top)

...just as an aside, this list was interrupted by Mrs J, asking me "Who's Cliff Richard again?", "..erm why?" I enquired. "come and look at these china Cliff Richard toast racks.." , "What the f...."!!!!

steenbeck said...

Oh--I should add that I have never ever ever found any 'Spiller's answers dull, (and certainly not yours, Nilpferd).

And I've been thinking a lot about these, but now I have to take Isaac to eat pizza at Malcolm's school, an event about which he is brimming with excitement.

Japanther said...

a note on procrastination. A playwright (Pinter maybe?) has a quote that goes something like:

"whenever I sit down to write, I get an irresistible urge to go and buy a lightbulb"

tincanman said...

1. How do you end up wasting time?
''I'll just refresh RR one more time...''

2. Politically...
They say the two things you never ask about in polite company is sex and politics, so not a word about the fucking conservatives.

3.Most significant/important event
Well, birth of kids obviously. Of a newsworthy variety, that'd have to be .... er, um...

4. Do you drink?
No. One gets too old after awhile.

5. Guaranteed-to-please dish?
Fajitas. Fresh ingredients. Tasty. Assemble yourself from pass-around dishes. Very connival.

And now for a read and find out more about what a load of nutbars you lot are.

CaroleBristol said...

So how do you, rightly or wrongly, always end up wasting time?

Surfing the net, posting on Guardian Talk, playing games just like you.

Politically, how would you describe yourself?

Non-doctrinaire left/liberal/anarchist

What is the most significant/important event that you have been present at and witnessed live?

I don't think I have ever been at one. I seem to have watched most of them on TV.

Do you drink?


If so, what sort of drinker are you?

Moderate (according to me) Excessive (according to UK medical wisdom)

And what's the drunkest you've ever been?

To the point I couldn't remember anything (but not like that for decades)

what's your signature, fallback, guaranteed-to-please dish?

My lasagne always goes down well as do my curries, but I cook a lot, so I can say that most things I do are pleasing to friends.

nilpferd said...

Not wanting to start anything, and I'm aware those of you who mention the system are speaking in theoretical terms, but I'm afraid any mention of communism goes down like a lead balloon around these parts. I was reminded of this again at the weekend in Prague when we visited an excellent exhibition dealing with political change, focussed on post 1989 Czech experiences but drawing on work from Indonesia, Romania, Poland and elsewhere. One film clip of the events surrounding Ceaucescu's death had Sandra remembering the situation in Bucharest's main square, where Securitate snipers were picking off protesters on the day the mood changed, and she and others barricaded the doors to the architecture faculty to stop an enraged mob getting in. It took Romania until the most recent elections to really shake the old guard out of power, much the same way that post-war German politics was riddled with fascists.

Chris said...

nilpferd: as I think I'm the only one to have actually mentioned communism thus far, let me hastily assure you that I'm very well aware of how an intrinsically fair and just idea has always ended up in corruption, misery and death. I simply yearn for some way of organising society based on the humane treatment of individuals' needs and capabilities. The 'Market' - whilst demonstrably better at creating functioning societies - has no such aspiration.

Chris said...

I seem to have just put off making a meal.

Shoey said...

1. Procrastination? Let me get back to you on that.
2. Libertarian
3. Witnessed the 1st World Trade Center bombing, albeit from a good distance away.
4. Frequent, Mrs. SG leaned over a fence & threw-up in the cockpit of some poor soul's kyak one time.
5. Not too shabby on the old BBQ.

nilpferd said...

cheers chris, I was probably referring to a recent and annoying tendency to pontification on RR rather than your perfectly reasonable comment, but I don't think there's any point discussing this on RR, where I think there's been a recent overdose of cod politics packaged into neat little self righteous bundles. The 'Spill being more of a personal thing, I think it is important to state personal beliefs here, and we seem to have the time and inclination to deal in a civilised way with diverging viewpoints.

BalearicBeat said...

1. Like a lot of folks, I can spend a frightening amount of time flicking between messageboards, Facebook and now RR and the 'Spill. I also trawl a lot of blogs looking for music. When I moved back oop North from London, most of the people I'd known had moved on and the forums I got involved with introduced me to the big group of friends I now have, got me into DJing again and doing the radio show; basically gave me a whole new lease of life, so a lot of time theoretically "wasted" procrastinating on the internet has actually turned out to have had a really positive effect on me.
2. My parents were archetypal "working class made good" and therefore suckers for Conservative politics, the Daily Mail, sent me to a posh fee-paying school etc. I've always been left-of-centre/liberal and my feelings now are that, despite the natural disillusionment that tends to set in with any party after a long time in office, this country has seen massive strides in the last 12 years to improve the lives of working families such as my own and a wealth of enlightened policies that have made it a more liberal place to live. I'm scared that people have such short memories and, possibly due to the lack of any credible alternative, are seemingly on the verge of returning the Tories to power.
3. I can't say I've ever been present at any historically significant events. In terms of pop culture, the one thing that I can always look back on and say I was right there in the thick of it, in the right place at the right time, was being in Manchester in 1988/89 and experiencing the full phenomenon of acid house and the Haçienda at its height. Probably the last great youth culture explosion this country has seen and it had a massive effect on me. So, yeah, I was there. But I'm losing my edge ;-)
4. Well, I've spent most of my adult life working in the wine trade, so you can probably draw your own conclusions. I certainly don't drink as much as I used to, but it's certainly left me with a love of good wine and a pretty high tolerance level.
5. I make (and indeed have just made) a fine curry and my red lentil dhal is pretty legendary with everyone who's tasted it.

tincanman said...

@ BB
Do you do deliveries?

tincanman said...

er to Birkenhead

nilpferd said...

Sorry, got a bit ratty there.
*sits naked in swamp and recites the Hippo mantra for two hours*
OK, everything's cool..

Frogprincess said...

That time already???
1. Flicking between the 'Spill, Facebook, Clip Joint, Twitter, etc etc I could have written hundreds of scripts already.. but ain't it fun???
2. Left of centre. Mining stock an t'ing.
3. A bit of a head scratcher, that one. Nothing historical really. Saw Petrucciani's last concert with Grapelli. They both passed away not long after. Monumental. Oh my cousin was on Phuket beach the day of the Tsumani. He and his wife managed to scramble onto a rooftop and survived. That's the nearest I want to get to 'history'....
4. Four units a week - stick to it rigidly. Wine mainly - chilled rosé goes down a treat in this weather otherwise mainly reds. Am not a great drinker of white.
5. Smoked salmon pasta. Never fails. Could do it with eyes bound and one hand tied between back...

BalearicBeat said... that's Mr T. Canman, Birkenhead...

...pilau rice or naan with that, sir?

tincanman said...

leave me nanny out of it

Abahachi said...

Re Communism: precisely one of the reasons why I'd always distinguish between Marx and most of his followers. Marx offered a brilliant and (as far as I'm concerned) still relevant analysis and indictment of capitalism/modernity. He believed fervently in the possibility of a different way of running society, in opposition to those who believe that capitalism and the pursuit of gain above all else are simply features of universal human nature - but he said very little about what such a society might look like, and I firmly believe would have been horrified by those regimes that then claimed to be communist and inspired by his ideas - 'bureaucratic state capitalism' would be a better description, if you don't mind the jargon. I can understand the desire of western Communists to believe that an alternative society might be being realised, but they had to be seriously delusional to still be thinking this after 1956 if not well before.

Jacques Brel, on the other hand...

steenbeck said...

Get out of that swamp, hippo. I was going to say hear hear.

And BB, we might have to have a red lentil dhal-off, because I was going to say that, as one of mine!

I really am going to answer these properly.

DarceysDad said...

@ gordonimmel - was that mis-spelling of definitely a small piec of topical satire?


Mr. Red-Faced of Bradford writes said...

"piec" ?!?!?

Glass house / stone.

nilpferd said...

Dhal-off! *Hippo exits swamp rapidly, grabbing Tinny's Naan. Clears up a slight misunderstanding with Tinny and puts some clothes on.*

Aba- fair enough, and quite an appropriate description.

BalearicBeat said...

Haha! Lentils at dawn!!

nilpferd said...

By the way, Snad- I've been pondering your drunkenness story- a bottle of whiskey, you being sick, high window, etc- someone hit you over the head with a bottle, this induced nausea, I'm thinking? You suffer from vertigo, perhaps? The label of the bottle made you feel woozy?
Or- no, it couldnae be- say it isnae true!
Ah'm no feelin' very guid alloffasudden..

nilpferd said...

*tummy rumbles*

gordonimmel said...

@ Darceysdad, I'm usually good at spelling but that's one of the words I've got a total block on, along with things like get the drift.

@BalearicBeat, 'Lentils at dawn!'. How very Guardian. Should we all turn up in our sandals? I've already got the beard.

And I'm glad to see it wasn't only me who quietly muttered to myself whilst suddenly finding something very interesting to look at in my pint during the 'political' discussions of the last couple of weeks over on the Mothership.

steenbeck said...

1. Solitaire (with cards, old school) Crosswords (they really are good for your brain, ejay--apparently my great aunt had a stroke and the doctor told her to keep herself sharp with crossword puzzles). I like soduku, which surprises me because usually numbers aren't my thing.

I was remembering that when I was in college and didn't want to face a deadline I would take a walk to the nearest place my friends might be congregating--be it a student center, a bar, or a sunny lawn--and it feels like the 'Spill and RR serve that same purpose.

2.I've been thinking about this a lot today. My parents are the very liberal children of very conservative parents. I've always admired them for learning to think for themselves. I'm very liberal, too, but most of the time I'm... disgusted? disappointed? with politics in general. I should point out that I'm only talking about America here...but to me it seems that the whole point of politics should be to try to find a system to ensure the health and well-being of as many people as possible. Maybe even a guard against self-interest or anything worse. BUt it doesn't seem to work that way. It seems to work against it sometimes. I could go on and on, but I won't, because I realize how stupid I must sound. I should say that I do like Obama, and I still have a lot of hope for him. I don't always agree with him, but I think he transcends politics and the pettiness of political parties, and I'm glad about that.

3. This is cheating slightly, because I didn't exactly witness it, but I'd have to say 9/11. I live about an hour and a half away from manhattan, But my mother works in the city, and my brother lives in Brooklyn. I couldn't go to work that night because my coworkers commuted from the city. Our phones worked only sporadically. It personally effected almost every person that I know. The weather was eerily beautiful, and there was a strange stillness, because no planes were flying. It was bewildering, terrifying, moving. I can't imagine what it must have felt like even closer.

4. Oh yeah, I drink about half a bottle of wine a night, with dinner. Sometimes more if I'm at a party, less if I have to work (ahem, none, I meant none, really I did). I love making dinner and drinking wine. But I did go 9 months without drinking much at all on 2 separate occasions, so I know I could go without it. I have drunk too much on a few occasions, but no big stories. WIne seems to have an automatic emergency shut-off-switch of making me sleepy, which saves me from too much embarrassment, or so I foolishly believe.

5) well, BB took my red lentil dhal, and Nilfperd and Ejay already mentioned a nice tomato sauce, which I make a lot for various applications. I know I've talked about it before, but I make a mushroom and spinach pie, frequently. Particularly for people who aren't vegetarians, because it's very hearty and tasty, and people always like something involving pastry, and forget that they aren't getting any meat.

I could go on and on about some of these questions, Snadfrod. Very thought-provoking.

GarethI said...

1. The world domination game on You can never try to smack Stuart Broad back over his head too many times, as I told Ramnaresh Sarwan the other day…
2. Disenchanted cynical left-of-centre liberal.
3. Probably the 2005 Champions League Final in Istanbul. No, definitely that.
4. Like you, Snadfrod, I drink more than I should, largely beer in winter and lager/cider in summer (some have a seasonal wardrobe, I do that with pints) or – when I’m back with my folks – they’ve usually got some Cocksput rum in.
The drunkest? I was at uni and this girl I really liked was explaining how she was seeing this six foot seven half-Spanish boxer who wrote short stories, so I hit the bar instead. I still can’t remember anything from that night apart from looking at my change in the back of the taxi and throwing up at my digs, which really scared me. I’ve never got that drunk since.
5. Couscous with chicken, chopped dried fruit (apricots and figs), raisins and finely chopped red onion. With a side order of poppadoms.
Although I made a chocolate cake to take into the office one morning. If they elected the MD, I’d have been running the place by the afternoon.

ToffeeBoy said...

@ OK, here we go again - blind as always.

1. I'm sure I won't be the first with either of these answers:

a) Oh, I can't be bothered answering this now - I'll let you know tomorrow.
b) Mainly here.

The serious answer is that I have very little free time (is that DsD I hear, playing a sarcastic violin?). What with my writing, my football and cricket coaching, voluntary work at the school, there's not too many spare moments knocking around. Oh, and there's work and family life ...

I suppose my laziest moments are spent watching our little feathered friends gorging themselves on the bird feeders at the bottom of my garden - but I don't really see this as a waste of time. Busy, busy, busy.

2. A softened socialist. Once a regular on demos and protest marches, I now find myself wondering whether it was all worth it. It was, I know - but I somehow can't get so worked up these days. Pragmatism over idealism is now my watchword.

3. That's a very good question - and I'm going to have to give it some thought ...

4. I used to drink - fairly heavily when I was a teenager and in my twenties but progressively less so until about four or five years ago when I suddenly lost the taste for it. I'm really not interested in alcohol anymore. Give me a nice fiery ginger beer any day.

I once (when I was about 19) got so drunk that I got up in the night and missed the toilet. Unfortunately I missed by some distance - roughly twenty feet. I woke at about 3 o'clock in the morning to find myself pissing in my parent's wardrobe. Oh dear - what a fuss that caused.

5. I'll have to pass on this one - my eating disorder precludes me from cooking anything that anyone else would be even remotely interested in. I can mash a mean potato though ...

TracyK said...

1: Massive procrastinator, drives Jon insane. Flick between The Guardian website and Facebook. Utterly addicted to playing Bejewelled. Had to stop playing online Tetris when I kept dreaming of falling blocks.

2: Lefty. Dad worked in the Birmingham car industry, mum in various factories/low paid jobs. My childhood was constant financial insecurity, strikes and hatred of Thatcher. Speaking of whom:

3: Speaking of being a lefty, I was in London during the labour victory of 1996. I went to the May Day free festival in Finsbury Park a couple of days after the election and was utterly thrilled by the joy and hope people were exhibiting. Billy Bragg played his first gig under a Labour government. Wept buckets to Between The Wars, everything seemed possible...
The following year I was working at a special school in Swiss Cottage when Princess Di died. As the kids were all considered sverely disabled, many of them had actually met her. Cynical as I was about her, the grief those kids went through for someone who had actually touched their lives (apparently Di was fond of dropping in on various hospitals without any fanfare) was completely real. We saw her cortege pass us in Mill Hill, like Japanther, in a sense of seeing history happen.

4: I go through phases. The past couple of weeks I've had a couple of glasses every night or a couple of beers, because my workload has just halved and it's nice to have a beer in the evening sun. I can go weeks without a drop though.
The drunkest I've ever been was when the Ooberman forum had a social, I got wasted on margaritas and spent most of the meet asleep in the loos of the old Moon Under water on Charing X Road, cheek cushioned on loo seat. Next day I saw The Incredible String Band, Clearlake and the Delgados play with an orchestra at the Royal Festival Hall, curated by Peel. Cracking cure for the worst hangover ever.
I am a boisterous drunk. Ask the Aberystwyth Caving club. Or don't.

5: I do a fab quiche, or steak pie, or a roast, my roasters are legendary. Love cakes too. And biscuits. Nothing too fancy, just plain English cooking.

ToffeeBoy said...

3. Having now read all the fascinating answers above, I'm reminded (in particular by steenbeck's 7/11 reference) that I got fairly close to being in the middle of the 7 July bomb attacks in London. I was on my way into work, and got to Watford Junction to find that the main line trains weren't running but no one seemed to know why. I got on a slow train and got as far as Harlesden when some police officers got on the train and said that the train would be terminating at Willesden Junction and that we would all have to get off there and vacate the station. We didn't know what had happened but I could tell that it wasn't going to be good news. As we got off the train at Willesden I heard some idiot complaining to the police that he had a meeting to go to in London! My only thought was a) phone ToffeeGirl to find out what had happened and let her know that I was OK and b) get the fuck out of there as quickly as possible. I walked back as far as Harrow and eventually got a bus from there back to Watford.

If I'd got to Watford Junction a bit earlier, I would have got a fast train and could have ended up (literally) on the bus that exploded near Russell Square (it was my regular bus route from Euston to work).

goneforeign said...

1. If I have an important deadline, like in 48hours, I'll usually ignore it for at least 40+ and then settle down and do it. I'll do anything but confront it but I'm usually thinking about it subconsciously. As a student this could easily apply to exams or projects. I'm probably not really ignoring it but I'm always involved with other things. Whatever I'm doing I find that I spend huge amounts of time, particularly in bed, just thinking and organising and planning, drives my wife nuts, she's a 'let's get on with it, what's to think about?' type, I usually have every detail anticipated.

2. Politically what? Let's say I grew up with Uncle Joe and Vladimir Ilyich as my heros, even joined the YCL, think about the ramifications of that when entering the USA during the late McCarthy era, they even asked questions like 'Are you now or have you ever been....etc'. Didn't cause warm feelings towards my newly adopted country. When I became eligible to vote I always voted for the lesser of two evils, the Democrats, also I always voted against someone and never for someone, that was 'til 2008. Though I did once vote for a Republican but only because he was a personal friend and he won and became a congressman.

3. Continuing from the above it would be sitting in front of my TV when Obama won the election and watching his acceptance speech from Chicago. Never thought I'd experience anything like that and I played the tiniest part in it, talk about damp eyes. I voted for the first time in my life for someone I believed in.
3A would be another world shaker but I didn't have a direct hand in it, when the Cuban missile crisis occurred we decided to quit our very well paying jobs and to leave the USA. We weakened and returned a year later.

4. Of course I drink! beer, wine and brandy, everyday, I never get drunk or even close. Once as a teenager my mate and I met two girls in Ipswich, they told us they were having a party the next Saturday in Felixstowe, would we like to come? Booze was easily available from the US airmen thereabouts so we bought a couple of bottles, gin and vodka. We turned up at the invited hour, made ourselves a couple of stiff one's and turned our attention to our 'hopeful conquests'. The next thing I remember is going into a bedroom thinking I'll just rest my eyes for a few minutes and being roughly shaken awake by her brother at about 2am with the words 'Come on you two, lets get out of here' and he wasn't at all friendly about it. We slept in my mates Morris Minor 'til dawn.That was the first and last time.

5. Guaranteed to please ME! If we're caught short I'll saute a couple of slices of lamb and make a sandwich in sour dough bread with a bit of chutney. We buy boneless legs of NZ lamb, cut them into about 1" slices and freeze 'em, 30 secs in the microwave and they're ready for the pan. A great lunch in about 5 mins.

AliMunday said...

And late again.

1. The Spill. Not that I get much of a chance to look at it. And Readers Recommend. And staring out of the window watching the wildlife in the garden. And tidying up my emails (work).

2. Politically vaguely Labour, vaguely Green - leftie. My parents were probably Liberals in the old sense. But they didn't make a big song and dance about it. I hope I'm a common-sense-a-tive.

3. Really can't think of anything - depends on the definition of significant or important. I even missed the birth of my son because I was out cold at the time.

4. I do drink, but very little these days - mostly (proper) beer but probably not every week - and only 2 pints max.I drank an awful lot in my youth and it's hard to pinpoint a 'drunkest' episode - I once woke up face down on my shower room floor in a pool of vomit, with a towel rail in my hand - my friend's boyfriend called in on his way to work to check I wasn't dead as I had apparently shifted a lot of whatever the night before. Very decent of him, if a little late. It grieves me to think of the time and money I wasted being drunk, which is largely why I don't do it any more. I do like a decent pint, though.

Vegetable stew - magic recipe. Wheatgerm is the key to making it tasty, plus a little frying in butter before hand, and a good stock. Never the same twice, but always good.

treefrogdemon said...

1 As with most of you, RR and the 'Spill have been great additions to my timewasting activities. I'm alos a star Freecell player, and pretty good at sudoku too - steenbeck, it's about logic not numbers. You could use ABCDEFGHIJ instead if you wanted. (Although it feels funny.)

2 I'm very left-wing. I once belonged to the International Socialists but left because it seemed a waste of a babysitter to sit in a pub and listen to a lot of blokes arguing. I was pleased when I came to live in Scotland to find a)that there was a Scottish Socialist party and b) that proportional representation meant that it got seats. (Unfortunately the SSP went horribly wrong very soon afterwards. I did vote for them in the recent European elections though.) Like Abahachi, I don't think Russia or China were ever communist and I'm dismayed that the word is now just another hate-word.

3 No great events, unless you count my (tenuous) family connection to the Russian Revolution, which is that my step-great-aunt married the son of Carl Faberge, the Tsar's egg-man.

4 Used to drink more than I do now. One good thing about getting older is that you don't seem to need to drink so much to get the same effect. So it's cheaper.

5 My chilli, but as this involves going to Texas and buying quantities of a particular brand of chipotles in tins, you may not care to replicate it. (I do this partly because I can, but also because if you buy fresh chillies it's always a bit hit-or-miss.) One tip though - and this goes for any dish involving minced beef - you don't need any kind of fat to cook it, because even the leanest meat will have enough of its own. Just get your casserole very hot, tip in the mince, press it down for a bit till it starts to brown, then stir to break it up and when you can't see any more pink, add the onion etc. No more grease floating on the top!

AliMunday said...

Oh, re 3, someone threw themselves under my train carriage once. That wasn't good. But even less good for him.

Mnemonic said...

I'm another procrastinator, spent most of my university career learning to play bridge (and still play), Times crossword (this was pre Murdoch Times), followed by Guardian crossword and five card stud. These days RR, 'Spill, Freecell, Fish Wrangler whatever.

2. Left-wing child of dyed-in-the-wool upper middle-class Tories. My mother was good friends with our local MP,a Tory Cabinet Minister and I have to admit he was a good bloke. These days I am so appalled at the whole bunch I'm voting Green though I might switch to Lib Dem for a general election.

3. I'll have to think about this one.

4. I drink more than my doctor would like but once a month have a completely alcohol-free week. I don't like being drunk but love the taste of a fine wine or a really well-made gin and tonic. My most legendary drunk was probably after a 14-hour day at work, suffering from a heavy cold, when my line manager took me and another colleague off for consolatory dry martinis at Duke's Hotel in St James's. We all three got more drunk that we had thought possible and none of us made it into work the next day. Line manager was staying in a new flat and spent 15 minutes trying to get into the one on the floor below and couldn't understand why the key didn't work. The porter finally came and escorted him to the correct front door and he promptly turned left into the broom cupboard and stayed the night there. Other colleague and I shared a taxi home. Her husband made her sleep on the couch downstairs and I went home and "fell asleep" on the bathroom floor for the night. Never ever have more than two dry Martinis!

5. I inherited three signature dishes from my mother, Oxtail Stew with dumplings, Pressed Tongue and Stuffed Marrow. On my own account, living in North Africa for 2 1/2 years has made me the Queen of Couscous. I even make my own pickled lemons and harissa sauce to go with it. I am also renowned for Aubergine Imam Bayeldi and Melanzane di Parmigiana.

@gordonimmel, there's a mnemonic for you - only one c is necessary.

DarceysDad said...

Let's see how many comments I have to break this down into to get it to post ...

1. Well I'm in good company here, aren't I? Though I claim you are all small-fry compared to my gargantuan ability to sit at a desk for hours and yet achieve precisely nothing. My particular vice is a freeware Backgammon game, author Geert Verkade. He admits that the computer player cheats by rolling itself the exact dice combinations needed to dig itself out of a losing position W-A-Y more than the laws of probability say it should. I take that as a challenge, and will refuse to leave a session until I have whupped its ass by a significantly big enough margin.
Other than that, I check on The 'Spill far more often than any balanced human being could ever justify. Don't even know why I do it; I'm one of the ten bloggers who gets every single comment as an email, so it's not as if I should ever miss anything.

2. Conflicted reactionary liberal socialist. My honest opinion every time I hear of the death of yet another 16-y.o. driver and his two mates after being tailed by the police is "Bloody good result, saves the world a packet", yet I abhor the society whose greed culture precludes the worth of everyman and encourages covetousness.
I want an all-inclusive world ... but without the BNP.
I believe that Billy Connolly's line about "wanting to be a politician should get you barred for life from ever being one" isn't a joke, yet want someone to represent me that can really bang heads together and sell them the pain as necessary for progress.
I believe the planet is in deep shit, but can't bring myself to even vote Green, let alone buy a smaller car!
I think if a business is that badly run, it deserves ONLY to fold, yet if the governments had followed that mantra with Lloyds or Chrysler, who'd end up most proportionately out of pocket? The working class and taxpayers that any society depends on.
Do I vote? Every time. Am I consistent? No; I am a pollster's wet dream floating voter. Do I believe any of it makes a blind bit of difference? I'm fast losing faith ...

DarceysDad said...

3. Nope, I too am drawing a blank on anything other than personal, music or sporting events that actually mean diddley-squat in overall human history.
In 2001, one of DarceysMam's then-work-colleagues was on his way to the first sight-seeing slot of the day atop NYC's Twin Towers, and was only 300yds from the foot of the WTC when the first plane hit it on Sept 11th.

4. (i) Yes I do.
(ii) Socially responsible (don't disturb anyone, be alcohol-free in time to work or drive, always one of us sober enough to look after the girls, never ever lose control of basic physiological functions).
Medically irresponsible I suppose (size of my spirit shots, or reluctance to store 'open' wine bottles overnight) mean if I do choose to drink more than three times in a week, it must be more than 21 units.
Type? Varied: I'll drink any decent beer/lager/cider/stout, most wines apart from Chardonnay or sweet whites, and some spirits, but WOE BETIDE anyone who tries to put any fizzy mixers in my spirits: YYEEUUUCCCCCHHHHH!
Drunkest? Easy answer. On the day my ex- and I should have been married, I asked my close group of friends to take me to the pub and get me bladdered to take my mind off it. Some (inc Gordon) couldn't make it, but some of them obliged, including one because it was also her birthday. That was DarceysMam, and that was also the start of .. well, our life together, I suppose. Though after 6or7 pints and a bottle of vodka EACH, (we know it was that much because the pub landlord told us later how many bottles of grapefruit juice we got through with the vodka before we moved on when he sold out!) it was a miracle it wasn't the *end* of at least one of us.
I wouldn't and couldn't even contemplate that kind of session now.

5. Usually lasagne, either classic or sausage/apple or whitefish/spinach, but always with much more mature cheddar than any self-respecting Italian would think right. I used to do a sliced and fried potato dish with cheese, onions and spices, that was great comfort food on winter days, but DsMam doesn't like it, so that's been replaced with the corned beef casserole that caused frogprincess much mirth a while back. I'd love to be as good at my wife's Aloo Palak Paneer curry as she is, but I'm not.

cauliflower said...

I got as far as ejaydee's deleting of time wasting games (Yes!) before deciding that, in order to think my own thoughts, not be unduly influenced by all your erudtion, inventiveness, I'd answer the Qs first, then go back and read...

1. Time is SOOOO precious, there's so much to do, so many people, places, and so much to learn (I'm a perpetual student) that I find it really difficult to waste time - always reading, writing etc. My relaxation time is spent keeping up with developments in chosen news areas, and reading and writing in RR and the Spill. But I wouldn't say it's wasted!

2. Thanks for asking the politics question - I've also been meaning to think about it lately, as I find myself confused. It's hard to know these days - my folks have a Telegraph habit now, but didn't really engage with politics (or music) so I'm an autodidact in most things. I developed habits in the olden days for the Times, pre-Murdoch, and the Guardian, along with the Morning Star, Private Eye, New Statesman, Mad, Cosmo. My politicisation came through personal experiences - seeing the impact of racism and terrorism, aged 5; bullying at school; a grossly unfair employer when I had a newspaper round mistreatment of ill and mentally ill people; horrific impact of Thatcher's policies on family members; witnessing media manipulation in BBC News during miner's strike; being attacked by police on marches, seeing City boys bully homeless people, spit in a man's face; squatters rights issues; being stopped by police for having black passengers in my car; etc, etc... So from one angle I probably should be rebellious and extreme. But I've also worked in business, responsible for keeping the money coming in to pay wages; in government/voluntary/community/charity sector organisations trying to forge partnerships, make things happen despite incompatible beliefs, and the last 20 years have taught me that things aren't simple. So, even though I hold out for liberal values where I can, I have learned pragmatism. I now practice psychoanalytic/psychodynamic therapy, finding out that each person's life, experience, world view, is uniquely their own, so my daily life is intensely political with a small p. I don't know if that answers your question, I'll keep thinking about it.

3. Most significant event I witnessed was a man's death. But if you mean public event, probably being in a ring round Greenham Common, the anti-nuclear protest at the US Embassy in Grosvenor Square in 1983, and the miners' strike march. I also remember watching men on the moon, on TV of course!

4. I drink sometimes, used to be more, age seems to make it impractical and painful. Also, my local pub seems to be a NF hangout, so best avoided. I need the next day off to drink at all these days. Favourites are 'greenies' made with Grouse and ginger wine; Guinness, wine; fruity or limey cocktails; Scapa single malt (leaves you with most exquisite, trembly but not-at-all-painful hangover; Oyster Bay Sauvignon blanc (in a supermarket near you, amazing stuff, and often reduced to £5.99) and any classy red. The most drunk ever was on 16 bottles of Stella in the Conti Club in Manchester in 1976, dancing to Joan Armatrading on the jukebox. But I've never passed out - my "instinct to hold it together" overrides any amount of alcohol.

5.Fallback dish... if in doubt, meringues (Ottolenghi recipe is fab - heat the sugar!) always makes people happy - and if we need a first course I can order almost any kind of pizza. That's a joke. I do a mean pasta, excellent roast chicken and fabulous Jansson's Temptation - dauphinoise with extra anchovy. Turn up in E1 any time and a good dinner will find its way onto the table.

SatanKidneyPie said...

Bloody hell! get in early, or you end up beign comment number 50-odd!

1. Nothing different to add here. I too have deleted all the free games from my PC. On an old laptop I deleted the games but later (while procrastinating) did a search of the hard drive to see if any of them remained. Freecell was still in one of the windows folders and no matter how many times I deleted it kept on reappearing. I am therefore awesome at freecell.

2. My dad is a Lib Dem councillor. Has been for years. His family are Australian and embarrassingly right wing, so I've always admired the fact he's gone his own way politically. My folks have never forced their views on me, but we usually agree. I'm probably more to the left of them, but have never been able to bring myself to vote for anyone else.

3. Hardly important or significant, but I was at Gander Green Lane in January 1989 when Sutton United beat Coventry City 2-1 in the third round of the FA Cup: often described as one of the great giant-killings and footage of which is often shown in FA cup montages.

4. I do drink. Generally prefer lager, but rather enjoy red wine too (though not at the same time). Am drinking for 2 at the moment, with Mrs KidneyPie being pregnant.

5. I'm not much of a cook. I rather enjoy knocking together a bit of a stir fry. Mrs KidneyPie makes a mean lasagne.

snadfrod said...

Wow. I am seriously impressed with the answering so far. Its been a busy night around here so it will take me a while to unravel all this.

Things I like so far:

- the notion of a 'procrastinate-off', which will begin.... riiiighhhttt.... in a minute after I play another freecell.

- the idea of a dhal-off. I actually think this must happen. I have a really really good lamb saag recipe, if people want to start sharing.

- pressed tongue and marrow.

- lamb and sourdough sandwiches.

- spicy nuggets with redcurrant.

- spinach and mushroom pie.

- real Texan chilli.

- fajitas.

- profiteroles with good ingredients and fresh cream.

- the idea of 'smelly chicken'. Can you elaborate, chris?

- heck, all the food.

- Josh Homme's rock'n'roll credo, which I greatly admire.

- sensible, knowledgeable political discussion between people who know what they are talking about.

- the existence of stickcricket, which may be an issue for me soon.

- Carole's brilliantly succinct political description of herself.

- mnemonic's point that it is the taste of a drink, not the drinking itself. I think that's me too.

- the idea that BaBe might be able to point me in the direction of some really fine reds, especially riojas, chiantis, languedocs and maybe Chilian Merlots? Maybe?...

Oh and hundreds of other things besides. Keep this up. Post recipes. Chapatis on the heath at sunrise!!!

DarceysDad said...

Good "near-miss" answer from ToffeeBoy up there reminds me I only avoided being in the Bradford City fire because I missed the bus to the game. Due to being hung-over, coincidentally enough.

The glass collector and I were at work behind the bar of a Bradford city centre nightclub that same evening. He had gone to the game without me but with the club's chef. The latter wasn't at work because he had burnt his hands trying - in vain - to put out the flames on an old man.

Two of our doormen were stewards at the game. One of them, Barry, was the hardest man I've ever met - to see him break down repeatedly that night was (in the most literal/extreme senses of the word) both incredible, and incredibly moving.

Unfortunately, some birdbrain on his way past Barry into the (basement floor) club came out with an early bad-taste Bradford Fire "joke". He was unconscious before he hit the bottom of the stairs, and his friend's nose was a bloody pulp before Mick could drag Barry off.

A horrible, horrible night.

tincanman said...

What's interesting to read is you ask someone in Britain what their politics are and they name a newspaper. That doesn't happen in North America (can't say for other places).

Most North Americans would be appalled, and certainly North American journalists with objectivity beaten into them from an early age. I however believe all reporting is subjective - the difference between good and bad reporting is if you are honest about how much of you is in the story. I love the Guardian; it is next to the New York Times and the San Francisco Chronicle the best paper I've spent any time with. I know its leanings, but that doesn't stop it asking tough questions.

I also subscribe to the Economist, which a lot of liberals go 'omg' too, but it is in agreement with the Guardian more than you'd think. And it disgrees often too, as you'd expect, and I find myself often having to think for myself grrr, I hate that.

This to me is the danger in our 'I am a _____(name of newspaper) households. Too many of us get our news and views from a source we have chosen to reinforce rather than challenge our views.

Soapbox. me. Off.

snadfrod said...

DsD - the open wine-bottle clause? Guilty as charged. I mean, no-one wants vinegary wine, do they... Love the politics answer, too, but will have to avoid the backgammon. We play serious stuff round here.

cauli - again, a great answer to q2. Plus I'm glad you have the Ottolenghi book. We went there a few weeks ago and it was amazingly inspirational. Is the book worth it? (I'm guessing yes from your answer...)

SKP - I'm wondering if we can set up some sort of freecell-off, too? I was once told that every single one can be done, but I don't know if that is true. Still, though, my stats are up near 70% success. Not too shabby...

ejaydee said...

Very good point Tin, I used to read the Economist quite a lot as a student, not so much now, but because I know which way "he" leans, I think I can make up my own mind. The newspapers in France could be divided in about the same way as the British ones, but you wouldn't define yourself by them as much, I think at least. What do you reckon FP? Do you hear many people saying "this is a Libération/Figaro household"?

tincanman said...

ah, i see why i am a blogger not a writer lmao.

what i meant to say re subjective reporting is that since i don't believe true objectivity is possible, i don't trust any media source that purports to be, no matter how well intentioned.

snadfrod said...

Tinny, I didn't know that about North American newspapers, I always thought that it was a universal thing. I suppose the TV news channels fulfill that brief instead?

Tangentially, my two favourite newspaper names ever:

The Seattle Post-Intelligencer
The Lewisham and Catford News Shopper

Y'know, for when you're needing to buy some news, pronto.

B-Mac said...

Donds for the News Shopper. SE6 represent, yo.

DarceysDad said...

Sorry Snadfrod, but 70-odd% is actually very shabby for a self-declared "inveterate procrastinator".

I'm at 93% on the PC, but only 91% on the laptop, because I get interrupted more often on that!

But to answer your question, DarceysNan scores 100% at Freecell because her version has unlimited Undos instead of just one, so if she sees she's backed into a corner, she just backs up all the way. So yes, they are all possible.

snadfrod said...

DsD - its a fair point. I often play it too fast, in fact I'm currently buggering one up quite well. Unlimited undos is just wrong, though.

Now who was it that mentioned Spider Solitaire? With all four suits that shit is just ridiculous...

B-Mac - F'real.

snadfrod said...

I saved it. Had an ace stuck, but worked my way up to it in the end. Go me.

snadfrod said...

Just nailed a Hearts, too.

Actually I should go to bed, shouldn't I?

Just one yahtzee, then.

DarceysDad said...

Just got to a career-high 37% on four suit Spider. And I'm currently on a 159 game winning streak at one suit Spider. So come on all you amateurs, who's the Daddy Procrastinator, hmmm?

That deserves a drinkie ...

DarceysDad said...

And ... this doesn't happen often ... I nailed a four-round perfect Hearts game earlier today (0-104-104-104) when the job contract pitch I was writing started to do my head in!!

cauliflower said...

Damn you TracyK. I had never heard of Bejewelled. And now I have.

snadfrod said...

Christ, DsD, that Hearts score is amazing. I've never done that, ever. Got three in a row before, but the last has always evaded me.

*standing ovation*

goneforeign said...

Snad: The four US TV channels are worse than useless in almost every way and that includes 'news', their idea of 'in depth' coverage of any story is less than 2 minutes, usually with a commercial break in the middle. US TV is not an information or entertainment medium, it's a sales medium. There's one slightly redeeming channel, Public Television, with the daily non commercial NewsHour. I also watch Aljazeera.
Most US newspapers are staring at bankruptcy, the internet has stolen their audience.

BalearicBeat said...

@ snadfrod

I'd be more than happy. Email just sent.

ejaydee said...

You could say though that, and I base this solely on my viewing of The Daily SHow, the news channels are pretty subjective. Fox News is very much on the right, and MsNBC has opted for the laughably sycophantic approach. Illustrated here:

or here:

tincanman said...

And sadly it is the quality ones going first.

Same as UK - the quality ones lose money.

Tends to mess up the balance sheet when you have to actually pay reporters and have bureaus and things.

cauliflower said...

@snadfrod - Ottolenghi is a state of mond, I think. Once you've acquired the requisite sumac, pomegranate and saffron (which doesn't appear to taste of anything) you're off and away. I use recipes for night-time reading mostly, not cooking. Good for ideas, though. And miraculous re meringues.

If @BaBe (loving the short form) is offering guidance on red wines, I'm hovering, glass held out. If I can offer any reciprocal skills, I will. Ask me anything ;-)

@japanther, Anything with Josh Homme is OK with me.

@mnemonic - I haven't made pickled lemons and harissa, but I'll vote for anyone who does.

cauliflower said...

before the subediting police pounce, I was in a state of demi mind, tout le mond.

TonNL said...

1. @work: check the usual blogs & sites(RR, the 'Spill, LinkedIn, the WebCam @ the Heliport in Zermatt etc. etc.)
@home, see @work + some quick games of Bloons on my iPhone, highly addictive (...and available as a free game on the www as well I believe...)

2. That depends... In the local elections I vote for the local green party, in the national elections I vote for our variety of the LibDems and in the recent European elections I voted for D '66, a party slightly to the left of LibDem territory, but the only party here in Holland with a clear pro-European campaign, and a leader intelligent enough to offer some sensible opposition to right-wing populist Geert Wilders, without getting involved in mud-slinging shouting matches like all the other party leaders... (a sad sight so see, alas....)

3. Being in Berlin (eastern part) when the first free elections after the fall of the wall were held, and meeting Gregor Gysi, then leader of the PDS, basically the old communist party with a new name, who did surprisingly well in that election, he was a very sympathic and approachable person...

4-a. Yes
4-b. I enjoy the occasional beer (if possible a Westvleteren Abt....), love to have a good glass of wine with my food, don't like the 'harder' stuff that much, although, a good glass of Calvados....
4-c. "Enjoying" 3 bottles of Jägermeister with a friend of mine during my university years, after which I fell asleep on the only mens toilet in the student pub with the door locked, causing quite a riot/panic on the outside, with me blissfully unaware...., took about an hour to open the door & wake me up, took me about three days to recover....

5. As people might know from the earlier days of RR, I enjoy cooking, and I don't really need a fallback dish, signature dish (or current favourite): Jamaican style jerk chicken...

TracyK said...

So sorry Cauli...

If you get good, you should join my Facebook league, we almost got 100,000 points last week.

gordonimmel said...

Can I just say that I don't have a clue what you're all talking about re Freecell, Hearts etc but frauimmel is a Spider Solitaire addict. I'll check with her this evening what sort of level she's at.

P.S. I slept in this morning and missed the duel. Who came third?

snadfrod said...

Gordon - I'm not sure about the result but, at the end of the day, I think we can be happy that curry was the winner.

Cauli - cheers for the info. Its Mrs Frod's birthday soon, so when my brother asks I can maybe help him out...

Tracy - the very idea of a facebook Bejeweled league makes me happy at the modern world.

Ton - I reckon that living in Holland makes the idea of an 'occasional quality beer' that bit more exciting and rewarding, right?
15% rewarding?

BaBe - many many thanks. Will reply later on when I've a bit of time.

sourpus said...

1) Working. Everytime. No question.

2) I really feel I escaped the class question when I left the UK - holds no interest for me now. Also became completely apolitical when I realised a)how meaningless it felt to label myself anything and b) how real politics has less and less to do with what anyone really believes. Once upon a time, I was raging Gramsci-ite with the kind of chip no normal shoulder could hope to support. Not anymore.

3) The really dangerous ones were all near misses. The Kings Cross fire for example, which I missed through a last minute decision change - hooray for procrastination, I say. As a student, I was present for several riots, mainly in Trafalgar Square - they got pretty hairy, since we were all very angry and spoiling for a punch up with de man. But I will always remember the moon landings - not easy to have witnessed first hand, but 'live' certainly. My dad was a science/inventing nut and got us out of bed especially to watch.


a) Three words:

Bears Crap Woods

Go figure.

b) I'm pretty good with drink, since I know my limits (even if I dont respect them - nor do anything - religiously) and hold my drink pretty well. Lucky that way. As a young man, I could drink more beer than I can imagine now. Red wine and the occasional Rum and Coke are now much preferred.

c) Pffff....where do I start?

One occasion in Poland (somewhere near the end of the post-communist era, decade-long, party of all parties) comes to mind. I had two of my many good Polish friends over (Anya and Magda) and we more than over did the Zubrowka. There have been a handful of occasions in my life when I couldnt remember how I got home, for example, but no examples apart from this one when I actually cared about what I had missed out on.

5) Wartime-recipe, old fashioned corned beef pie. Prepared the way grandmar used to make it. I am no chef, that's a fact. But ive only ever seen them queuing for more.

Delicious. Thanks Gran!

Abahachi said...

Since switching to Windows Vista I've also been working on Mahjong Titans - getting my average score on Turtle past 50% (the others are much too easy).

Re newspapers, I think the choice is cultural as much as party-political, albeit with a hefty overlap. Of course the Guardian is lefty, but a broad coalition of all the different varieties - and my father, an old-fashioned liberal, actually isn't a natural Guardian reader (more Independent) because he doesn't go a bundle on all the environmental, social work, cultural etc. stuff. Likewise, labelling someone a Daily Mail reader implies far more than just that they vote Tory (or UKIP or BNP); it's a whole world-view and set of attitudes.

Yes, we should probably have a Recipe of the Week feature, reviving FP's 'I Can't Be Arsed to Cook' series.

ShariVari said...

1). I waste vast amounts of time on the internet. It tends to be news / information related pages like the Guardian or Wikipedia. I'll quite happily sit and read the Word Of Mouth and Technology blogs despite living on a diet on curry or pasta and not really knowing what Twitter is. I'm constantly in search of things to learn about but have no filter as to potential usefulness. Also, Fifa 09 on the DS.

2) I generally say social democrat. I'm one of those people who constantly trumpet the Scandiavian model of welfare without ever actually having been to any Scandinavian countries. My mother's family tends to be one-nation Conservatives but my father has always been a vitriolic opponent of the Tories. I'm, perhaps, a little more pragmatic than i was in my youth but still very much to the left of the parliamentary Labour party. Typical Guardian reader, really.

3) Nothing much. The closest might have been the celebrations surrounding the fifteenth anniversary of independence in Ukraine - the first landmark anniversary after the "Orange Revolution". However, as much fun as it was, it was little more than a faded photocopy of an outpouring of public emotion most people had already grown disillusioned with.

4) I do drink, moderately. I prefer spirits to wine or beer but had a rather good time sampling the latter in Belgium last week. I have countless bottles of exotic liquers and spirits at home but little impetus to drink on a regular basis. I haven't overindulged for a long time. The last was about four years ago when i appear to have lost a significant portion of a night out from my memory. Given that it was an indie event at Nambucca, it wasn't necessarily a tragedy to have done so.

5) I make a cracking pizza, it must be said. My other half actually wept when she tasted it - the secret is Angostura Bitters in the sauce. Curry is always a quick winner though.

BalearicBeat said...

@ Cauliflower

No problem at all. Tin, Snadfrod & ToffeeBoy now have my email. If you'd like to grab the address from them, I shall do my very bestest to point you in the direction of a few gems.

Chris said...

Snadfrod: Smelly Chicken is so-called due to the aroma generated when frying onion, green pepper, crushed garlic, thyme and curry powder together. It lingers long after all is eaten and the washing-up is done. (If you're interested, the other ingredients are chicken browned in butter, tomatoes, sweet vermouth and raisins. It's official title is 'Country Spiced Chicken' and, when cooked right, it is rather yummy.)

DsD: I have never ever completed a four suit Spider Solitaire. I'm not sure whether I'm full of admiration at your perseverence/high-volume undo-ing or simply scratching my head that you can find so much time to waste....

BaBe: I was actually instrumental in changing something in your life, now I come to think of it. I started the petition at MGS with the aim of getting rid of the uniform (uniforms being an instrument of conformity foisted on us by the ruling class...). I think we achieved a concession that allowed sixth-formers not to wear the school blazer: 'Power to the People!'

steenbeck said...

I love the 'Spill!! I can't keep up with all of the interesting comments.

Glorious red (lentil) dawn on an island in the middle of the Atlantic!

I've been thinking about a lot of these questions--I'd probably change some of my answers, but I'm not articulate enough.

Tincanman--very good point on the newspapers. The only print news that I subscribe to and regularly read is the Nation, a fact that does indeed label me as liberal. I used to get the NYT, but I got a bit sick of it. They don't really deserve their liberal label, on a lot of issues. NPR frustrates me too. I actually get all of my news on a daily basis from the Daily Show. (thanks for the clips, Ejay) And the Guardian online. I started reading the Guardian because I wanted to get more honest news about what was happening here in America. And there's one issue that very very few news sources in the USA can approach with anything like balance or honesty, and that's the situation in the middle east.

I used to think that the attitude towards the comsumption of alcohol was different and healthier in the UK, but I'm not so sure any more.

steenbeck said...

Oh, and I meant to say that I'm on tenterhooks to see how PMac narrowed down the nominations this week. I think I've never enjoyed so much new-to-me music. And I've also never donded less, which I feel bad about.

ejaydee said...

I can't wait either, but I'm sure there will be 0 tracks nommed by me, 1 tops.

steenbeck said...

Well, I don't think that's possible. But I've already jinxed you enough so I won't say more.

tincanman said...

I didn't pay attention to who nommed what and I haven't had time to spend listening this week due to my Lego conservatory project, but it seems from the nattering that you are the star this week eJay (and it's apparently fit magic's tastes well too) so it would be a shame if you only have one or zero on the A list.

It's be like me coming in second on a words that begin with tin competition.

snadfrod said...

Shari - Angostura bitters in the sauce? That sounds like it could just be genius. In a John Torode/Gregg Wallace kind of way.

Sourpus - that's reminded me, I have a bottle of Bison Grass Zubrowka lying around untouched somewhere. Tinkle tinkle...

Steen - I love it too!

EJ - You may well be seen as some kind of inside trader. Transparency must be observed at all times and if you happen to ACTUALLY BE A FRENCH SPEAKER, well...

Tin - Tinnitus, Tinariwen, Tina Turner, Tin Hat (Not strictly a word), Tiny, Tinted. How am I doing?

By the way, am I on for the fastest century of comments? I feel like Shahid Afridi now he can bat again.

snadfrod said...

Quick single.

snadfrod said...

Misfield, and they've run two.

snadfrod said...


BalearicBeat said...

@ Chris

I salute you, comrade!

My mum wouldn't have done though, as she looked on in horror at the series of "dead men's suits" from Affleck's that I insisted on wearing throughout the sixth-form. I think she finally relented when she realised quite how much money it was saving her.

nilpferd said...

The A list is available, as is the new topic, but not the blog.. I'm off to bed though. If anyone has the grace not to mention The Chills, I'll be in tomorrow morning with a nom.

DarceysDad said...

The French Ten is on the blog.

I struck out, d'accord.

This week is Unemployment (which is what I'm staring at if things don't pick up rapidly).

I bagsie

Todd Snider – Looking For A Job

Pearl Jam – Unemployable

Death Cab For Cutie – The Employment Pages

Katrina And The Waves – Going Down To Liverpool

The Clash – Career Opportunities

ejaydee said...

Now I feel like the guy who claims to have done terribly at the exam, but then when the results come in, he aced it. Sorry.

DarceysDad said...

Why, Ed, how many are yours?

And btw, anyone who touches my DBTs is gonna get . . . donded.

steenbeck said...

Is that 3 for you Ejay? There should have been more!! And they can't come on early, I'm not ready!

ejaydee said...

Yep, that's 3, one of them was unexpected though, I can't wait to read the column to see how he justified all his choices.

ejaydee said...

For this week, I guess I'll try again with Outkast's West Savannah.

steenbeck said...

OOh, Mos Def, Worker's COmp!

And brother can you spare a dime. Or is that zedded.

cauliflower said...

Good for you ejaydee! You worked very hard for your trois points! I was secretly hoping you'd sweep the board.

ToffeeBoy said...

@ DsD - a boring 0-0 draw between us then. And I was quite hopeful this week ...

I won't be staying up for the blog's appearance (far too sleepy) so could some kind soul please nominate the beautiful Flint (For The Unemployed And Underpaid) by Sufjan Stevens for me?

BalearicBeat said...

I'm not sure. I think I had Complainte Pour Ste. Catherine and said it was originally by the McGarrigles, but then posted the Kirsty MacColl version. ??

Blimey, a subject painfully close to my heart then this week.

BalearicBeat said...

I'm not sure. I think I had Complainte Pour Ste. Catherine and said it was originally by the McGarrigles, but then posted the Kirsty MacColl version. ??

Blimey, a subject painfully close to my heart then this week.

cauliflower said...

To go back to the time wasting topic for a moment, have you seen this? It's the Guardian's version of shouting BUNDLE and everyone piling in! I've reviewed about a dozen MP's expenses documents tonight, just for fun (almost as entertaining as Bejewelled) and since I got home, the Guardian hive mind has reduced the total outstanding by over 10,000 documents. It's amazing what a mob can do when they work together.

But I can't think of any songs about unemployment :-(

steenbeck said...

Haha, cauliflower, me too! Well, I wanted him to get 9 songs in, and I wanted to get in with Le Tourbillon. It's been stuck in my head since thursday, it makes me weepy, and...what do the words mean? Oh, and maybe a couple for FP...

ejaydee said...

Too kind ladies, too kind.

I'll try and translate it properly tomorrow Steenbeck, but it's more or less about love at first sight with a woman, separation, and then finding the her again, for one night.

steenbeck said...

No worries, Ejay, I'm sure I can find a translation, and you've done more than your share last week. I guess I'd just never realized that the song was available outside the movie, and I actually bought it off iTunes and listened to it a lot. Ahem. Oh I don't like when the subject comes up early and I don't really have any ideas. And it's a good subject, so lots of people are going to have lots of good ideas...

ejaydee said...

I feel the same way, so I'm going to have a rare thursday early night.


goneforeign said...

Ejay: You mean like Before Sunrise/Sunset?

steenbeck said...

Goodnight, Ejaydee. Thanks for all your noms last week. Definitely transcended RR for me, and was very very rewarding--to my ears, at least.

cauliflower said...

I am kicking myself around the house because I didn't have time to grab anything from the Dropbox this week (hard drive playing up) so was looking forward to picking through ejaydee's collection at leisure this evening. But the world moved on without me (anyone read the faraway Tree as children?) and I missed it! Still, I'll always have the 'Spill. Goodnight all.

Abahachi said...

One thing has just occurred to me, given the number of people on here who turned leftwards in contrast to conservative-minded parents, or whose parents did: does this mean that, slowly but inexorably, the revolution is gradually arriving, or is there an equal (or larger) number of people elsewhere saying words to the effect of "my parents were typical wishy-washy lefties, but then I discovered the Daily Mail..."?

tincanman said...

I suspect you are right to a degree Abahachi; the rebelling against parents thing.

But in general people start out left when they have nothing and shift right as they gain things. Which makes sense - sharing someone else's stuff is so much easier than giving up some of yours?

tincanman said...

How do you spell I told you so?
Tin, yesterday: ''[ejay] you are the star this week eJay (and it's apparently fit magic's tastes well too)''
Paul, last night: ''A combination of Ejaydee's prolific posting, magicman's impassioned presentation of the works of Franco''

OK people, repeat after me:
'Tin is always right'
'Tin is always right'
'Tin is always right'
'Tin is always right'
'Tin is always right'
'Tin is always right'
See, it's easy once you practice a bit.

One more time.

Altogether now.

I can't hear you Cleveland


Abahachi said...

Actually I wasn't thinking of it in terms of adolescent rebellion, but briefly imagining a worldwide leftwards shift - very sixties of me, I know.

I fear you're right, on the whole, at least in this society (I persist in the belief that human beings are capable of overcoming their innate instincts and therefore participating properly in society rather than always pursuing their own interests). Reminded of the Bernard Shaw quote to the effect that someone who isn't a communist at twenty has no heart and someone who is still one at thirty has no brain. I disagree, but it does reflect a clear tendency to move rightwards the more one develops a stake in the status quo.

snadfrod said...

'Rin is always tight'
'Rit is always night'
'Trin is always hight'

Gah. I'll just never master it.

Morning all, and thanks for pushing us over the ton. And well done Ejay, a fully deserved hat-trick.

Aba - its a very interesting point and one that seems to be borne out, at least in the first stages, here. So when are we all going to start rabidly protecting our laaand with shotguns, then?

Also, having mentioned cricket, and recently commented how I was left underwhelmed by Netherland, I am now reading a book called City of Tiny Lights by Patrick Neate. Its a detective novel featuring a cricket-loving Asian Private Eye. He filters everything through the lens of cricket and it is hundreds of times more effective, in my opinion. Brilliant book.

Ejay - is the social definitely the 18th? What time is kick off?

snadfrod said...

As for songs about unemployment, I am drawing a huge blank. Usefully, though, I'm away most of this weekend. I'm going on a stag do. Camping. In Swindon. Yikes.

Just off to get the tent out of aspic and see how the weekend may pan out. Wish me luck...

nilpferd said...

I'm sure these things are very hard to qualify. Speaking for this corner of the world, you had the '68 generation rejecting their "fascist" parents and an authoritarian police state, this in turn fed into a "too little discipline/too much anarchy" backlash, then the stasis and corruption of the Kohl years ushered in a new red-green dawn which staggered through two terms before bowing down to the reasonably moderate Ms. Merkel- (although not forgetting we came within a whisker of a Stoiber chancellorship here, not sure what the english equivalent would be- Jeffrey Archer, perhaps) and now the Greens are clawing back ground in the cities at least, although the national tendency is more or less centre right, with the lib dems perhaps poised for a deciding role in the coming election and the Social Democrats dwindling rapidly. During this period there's been the odd rabid nationalist and reformed communist blip, but it seems to me the general political sway has merely aligned itself in the opposite direction to extremism and corruption/incompetence.
An article in this week's Spiegel forms the thesis that the middle class votes Green in comfortable inner city areas not because of their ecological beliefs, but because the Greens have developed into the most effective lobby through years of fighting lost causes; this makes them the most effective allies for NIMBYs, which basically comes down to people putting their own personal comfort first.

tincanman said...

Yes, because people are selfish. They give money to charity because time is more valuable and they aren't prepared to give that. They want wind farms until household budgets tighten, and then coal power is bearable.
This is why the system of political donations is the root of all evil to me. Consciously or not, are you going to adopt laws which benefit people with no money at the expense of those who have/earn money and give you some of it?

Off to play Lego. Ciao

ejaydee said...

Hello, yep goneforeign, an early night on thursday is one or two recommendations on the Mothership. Cauli, I can add some of my stuff back on the dropbox until tomorrow morning, or do you a personalized spotify playlist.

Social is definitely the 18th, I booked the room, I'm going to send an email soon based the emails I have from the '`spill and the previous social's contact list. I haven't booked a time though, I think 6/6.30 would be good.

I know few children of leftwing parents who've rebelled by going to the right, I think that would happen less often, but this 'Spill crowd is not necessary an accurate sample.

nilpferd said...

Ejay, I think it did happen here to an extent with the children of the '68 generation, I sometimes meet thirtysomethings here who seem to be reacting to their "anything goes" parents, and have developed some worryingly conservative and authoritarian ideas in consequence, the "we had no discipline and it ruined us" generation.

Blimpy said...

1. Web tings
2. Guardian reading liberal cliche
3. Manic's last gig with Richey
4. Ohhhh yes.
5. Packet o' ham risotto!

goneforeign said...

Ejay: Someone here recommended the Before Morning/Sunset duo, might have been you. I ordered 'em both from Netfix, really enjoyed the final credits where the bloke casually puts a CD in and it's Nina with 'Just in Time'. It fit the theme perfectly and was a nice ending.

Chris said...

Aba: I wonder whether, in the UK at least, the left/right changes aren't more to do with the prevailing political/economic circumstances. My parents were part of the generation that felt the need to be home-owners, business-owners and consumers, as a sort of patriotic act. By the sixties, we'd 'never had it so good' and so my generation were able to indulge socialist ideologies as part of the whole social upheaval that went on. My son grew up through the Thatcher era, where acquisition was fashionable and politics much less so. Blair expunged the word 'socialism' from the Labour Party and we end up where we are, all dancing round slightly different handbags. My son, BTW, is still not political, although I know he won't vote Tory.

Chris said...

Can I ask you all (or any still reading here) a question?

Everyone agrees, I think, that last week's French topic was brilliant for exposing new music to many people. But how did the 10 + 10 songs selected by Paul relate to that phenomenon? Did they reflect anything of the range and variety, either individually or as a complete list? Obviously there was an element of natural justice in that three of ejaydee's noms got in (a proportionate response?), but were the right songs selected?
This week's topic is obviously not going to be as popular but it should be easier to tell if Paul's next column has picked the 'best' songs about unemployment. Did this week's column tell us anything about the 'nature' of songs in French?

ejaydee said...

Wait a minute, am I an affiRRmative action baby?!

In all seriousness, I don't think there was any rationale, h ejust picked them because he liked them, and also maybe wanted to share it with the wider Guardian readership, (I guess that's why there were no obvious inclusions like Piaf, Gainsbourg, or a more popular Brel song).

debbym said...

Chris, I was actually left feeling a little disappointed by this week's playlist; or maybe that should be *deflated* after the really exciting rush of the blog... (Or maybe I'm just tired).

snadfrod, I really enjoyed "Twelve Bar Blues" by Patrick Neate, about the beginnings of the jazz era.

Abahachi said...

I find it's quite rare that any of the playlist choices are ones that I would consider overwhelmingly obvious - there does seem to be a certain drive towards introducing people to things they might not otherwise have heard of, and virtually all the times I've been listed it's been for pretty obscure stuff - and this week's list seemed to reflect that. I liked it, but, no, I don't feel any the wiser about the essence of songs in French. Don't imagine that I'll change my views on unemployment as a result of next week's list, either - but at this stage I would guess that there will be a deliberate effort at broadening the choice beyond the obvious 1980s tracks.

As for politics, Chris, I must be about your son's age as I grew up in the 80s, and became thoroughly politicised as a result; I now spend my time despairing at the apathy and solipsism of most of my students, children of the New Labour decade...

gremlinfc said...

Please be aware my contributions are above this post!!!

tincanman said...

Remember thought that RR was never meant to be the best 10 songs on a topic. They were 10 quality songs that together made a unique and inventive playlist.

(which helps when your songs don't get picked lmao)

goneforeign said...

Chris: Two items;
1. Given 1100+ posts and god knows how many actual music posts, I've no idea how any person could go through that lot pretending objectivity, and 'select' 10 as being representative. First off how does he hear all that obscure stuff that doesn't have youtube or spotty links? And second, does he sit for three days doing nothing but listen or does he grab at the recognisable ones and create his list from there? I think he does the best he can under the circumstances. I tried to listen to the spotty list, heard maybe 25%, I missed all the other posts, just way too much.

2. Growing up in a strong socialist family I now find myself not really caring about 'the masses' if what I read in the comments section of youtube or the various blogs is representative. Similarly I don't get warm feelings when I see my fellow citizens, usually obese, unhealthy, smoking, in enormous credit card debt and driving vehicles that show no concern for the environment and generally acting in selfish and totally unthinking ways. I think that US politics is so far gone as to be irretrievable, the military and the huge corporations have gained so much control there's no hope for change. It's evident every day as Obama tries to impose some control on Wall St, he's doomed to failure, too many entrenched interests, too much money changing hands.

snadfrod said...

B-Mac - nice answers. Is this the most comments, yet?

debby - I will definitely check that one out, and his book about hip hop is supposed to be excellent, too. His website,, is nicely self-deprecating too. Cheers.

Plus, in good news, the tent went up reasonably fine and is reasonably hole/smell free. Bonus. Now pray for me in Swindon...

Have a good weekend, one and all.

tincanman said...

gonna be a bit of a walk back to your tent though

Blimpy said...

@snad - i think it well could be!!!

saneshane said...

1 spill
2 I'm left of Green
3 I was standing on the Berlin wall and watched the first of the East Germans come into the west.
4 oooh yes/ now just Grolsch usually or bison grass vodka with apple juice and one of us has to be okay to run after the 4 year old!/ never as drunk as the person next to me I always think!

5 Pasta bake with an asparagus sauce, paprika, courgette, sweetcorn, quorn pieces and a strong cheese and breadcrumb crispy top. Simple and pleasing to the vegetarian son and ms I live with.

FP said...

Donding Saneshanes Bison vodka and apple juice. Inordinately fond of those - called a 'charlotka' I believe...

saneshane said...

nice aren't they FP.
we get tails of dinner with Lech Wałęsa from my folks Polish friends when they supply us with the Vodka and my dad planted up the trees that started:
(I was born in the managers farm house when the juice was first produced) so it's a sentimental drink for me!!!

never knew what it was called.

ejaydee said...

I had Copella's Apple & Elderflower juice a few moments earlier. Cheers.

saneshane said...

the apple and mango is tasty too.. enjoy.