Archive for the ‘Techo stuff’ Category


October 12, 2017 7 comments

I noticed today that access to Oxford centre will be restricted to electric vehicles by 2020. Great idea, close to my heart. Read more…


Small but ready to conform

October 11, 2017 15 comments

This little kingdom of only 5.5 million souls, it has to be said, is a mèlange of the clichèed sublime and gorblimey; rarely making the international meeja top ten in anything but happiness and nordic noir eccentricity. The last week’s front-runners were a murderous submariner and a national ban on the rarely-seen burqa, both stories remarkable for their otherworldliness. Read more…

Categories: Politics, Techo stuff


October 6, 2017 26 comments

A new roof

September 28, 2017 25 comments

We’re being rethatched. And a very interesting procedure it is! But never fear – I’m not going to give you a straw-by-straw commentary. And while our expert thatcher is at it, he’s replacing many of the original roof timbers from 1860 (ish) which were hewn by hand from trees in the forest right here. The ‘good’ stuff which he leaves in place is extremely hard, almost defying his drill.

The thatch itself is Chinese these days. Why? Because local reed beds produce a much shorter stem which is more expensive to install – covering only half to 4/5ths of the area per bundle (see above).

So I’ll try to take some pics when it’s done – already a tribute to the craft.

Categories: Techo stuff

Sam’s the man!

September 19, 2017 8 comments

My reader may have noticed on his/her cyber-trek that Google has just celebrated the anniversary of Samuel Johnson’s 308th birthday. He was undoubtedly its predecessor – lexicographically speaking – before the more modern encyclopedias appeared. And his dictionary reflected his character as a poet, wit and literary compiler. Read more…

Fake news?

September 18, 2017 18 comments

Everybody’s fave airline (not), Ryanair, is having a Darwin , cancelling 50 flights a day, expected to total 2,000 before long. It claims it’s all about its holiday arrangements for pilots but interestingly, Norwegian (my fave!) has announced today that it has been poaching Ryanair’s pilots – to the tune of 140!

So who’s telling porkies here?

Meantime, guess who’s losing customers in droves and who’s first in line for new bookings!

EU life in the Sun

September 14, 2017 15 comments

I’m tickled by the Sun’s exposè of M Drunker’s rallying call yesterday, particularly his ideas on tax and Shengen – two real beauties! Read more…

Brave new world or……

September 11, 2017 22 comments

I’m fascinated by Sky’s article today about developments in education. Read more…

Categories: History, Techo stuff

A favourite voice

September 6, 2017 Leave a comment


John Motson OBE, of the sheepskin jacket and Midlands twang, is retiring after 50 years on the mic. The Evening Standard celebrates appropriately:

”The 72-year-old has covered 10 World Cups, 29 FA Cup finals and more than 200 England matches.
He is renowned for an encyclopaedic knowledge of the game – and the occasional on-air gaffe.

Here, we recall some of his most memorable moments behind the microphone. Read more…

Categories: Flounce, Sport, Techo stuff

A Pyrrhic victory?

August 29, 2017 9 comments

The ever-vigilant meeja continue to report that the EUroprats are sneering at the efforts of the UK team to negotiate BREXIT, led by JC Juncker himself. But if it’s obvious to me it must also have struck others that the EU members have a lot to lose from driving the UK into a corner. Why? Because whether the EU’s feelings are hurt or not, the UK will remain an important trading partner. And trade goes both ways.

The Chambers of Commerce of Britain and Germany seem to have reached a similar conclusion, pointing out to the EU that businesses will suffer if more positive moves are not made – and soon.

Let’s hope that as their suntans fade the EU’s supercilious expressions will also give way to serious attempts at agreement. Otherwise, who wins?