Category Archives: Lazy Blogging

I got a reply from the Government

Your petition has been approved by the Number 10 web team, and is now available on the Number 10 website at the following address:

Your petition reads:We the undersigned petition the Prime Minister to introduce first aid training for pupil into schools

Anyone can suffer an accident at any time. Survival rates are improved for people who receive first aid quickly. Few adults are aware of what to do in the event of an accident. Teaching children how to give first aid will grant them the skills required to perhaps save a life.

Thanks for submitting your petition.

— the ePetitions team


Filed under Lazy Blogging, You decide

Meme: Seven things I approve of

Potage de bleu de Mlle has charged me with citing seven things that I approve of.  I was going to be lazy and just list the Seven Deadly Sins but I’ve opted for a more personal approach.  Here they are:

1. Questions

Ignorance is a terrible thing and the best way of dispelling ignorance is to ask questions.  Accepting something without questioning it is just stupid.  If you disagree don’t bother to ask me why.

2. Being wrong

This goes on from the previous point really but I get to be wrong about lots of different things a lot of the time.  The wonderful thing about being wrong is that I can admit it and change my mind.  If I was never wrong I’d miss out on that.

3. Anger

Good righteous anger makes for change.  When people get angry they get motivated to change things.

4. Electricity

Honestly, I would be able to do almost nothing without electricity.  It’s a wonderful form of energy.

5. Mortality

This is complicated but mortality is vital to life and the appreciation of it.

6. The occasional expletive

I don’t mean the constant swearing that can be heard in any builder’s yard but a well placed expletive can add gravitas to an otherwise mild sentence.  It needs to be rare though otherwise the impact is diminished.

7. Cuddling

As a social animal I enjoy physical contact and cuddling is good for that.  Plus it’s lazy and I like lazy too but I ran out of points.

Tag thyself.


Filed under Lazy Blogging, Reasons to be cheerful

The Great and Magnificent Predictions of Dominic Destiny

I have been reading Greta Christina’s blog over the last few days and I’ve been particularly amused by the Are you Smarter than a Celebrity Psychic? entry.  Have a read it’s a really good blog.  I can highly recommend the entry on Atheists and Anger.

However if you are too lazy or too busy because you are at work then just run with the meme and make some predictions.

The rules: Make five predictions about world events in 2008: political events, natural disasters, celebrity gossip, etc. Post them in the comments here, no later than January 15, 2008. Predictions should be things that reasonably might or might not happen; totally obvious predictions such as “The sun will continue to rise in the East” and “Saturn will not crash into Jupiter” will not be accepted. However, credit will be given for partially correct answers, since the celebrity psychics do that when they score themselves. Credit will also be given if events can be interpreted to fit the prediction — ditto.

Here are my five predictions:

  1. Well known celebrity couple Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt (Bradgelina) will announce a split and will go their separate ways.
  2. Hillary Clinton will be the first female president of the United States of America.  I’m only saying this because the democrats will probably win and I’m certain that Americans will vote for a woman before they will vote for a black man.
  3. England will experience freak weather conditions on an unprecedented scale.  I include heat waves, snow storms and\or tornadoes.  None of these will stop me from getting to work though…unfortunately.
  4. There will be a large food scare in England akin to the salmonella, BSE, or bird flu farces of recent years.  I don’t know, maybe it’ll be the turn of vegetables to receive some bad press.
  5. The west will go to war against a major nation in the middle east… again.

Now, what are your predictions?


Filed under Atheist, Bad things happen, Lazy Blogging, Religion, You decide

Tagged about books

Darla tagged me with her virtual tag gun.  Now I’m forced to answer questions on my reading habits or face the prospect of setting off alarms in books shops for the rest of my life.

01.  One book that changed your life   Ah now there’s the crux.  By the very definition every decision I make has some bearing on my life and therefore changes my life to some extent.  However I’d have to say that the book that really changed my life most significantly wasn’t a book at all but a play.  That play was William Shakespeare’s The Tempest and it showed me that there is magic in words. 

02.  One book that you have read more than once  Another tricky question.  I read most books more than once which is why I keep them after all.  I suppose that The Color Purple is one that I read every few years.  It really gets to me and I can see hope rising out of such cruelty whenever I read it.  The film, while excellent, didn’t do the book justice.

03.  One book you would want on a deserted Island  It’d have to be something long and something that I’ve never read.  War and Peace.  The Hildy keeps telling me to read it and one day I just might.

04.  One book that made you laugh  I’m not the fruitcake that laughs out loud on trains while reading.  Really I’m not.  One book that is packed full of giggles is Good Omens by Terry Pratchett.  It’s also one that I keep meaning to reread.  Another was Making Waves by David Hasselhoff.  OK it wasn’t supposed to be funny but it had me in stitches from the beginning.

05.  One book that made you cry  I’m really not the sort of person who cries.  No, no, I am far too manly for such things.  Other than The Color Purple mentioned above I’d have to say that Lovely Bones was one book that was certainly sentimental enough to make me blink a few times.

06.  One book that you wish had been written  All of them.  Every book that I read.  Recently I wish I’d written American Gods but I’m not Neil Gaiman.  I’d have loved to have spent a year researching it though.  It was fascinating.

07.  One book that you wish had never been written  Hard Times by Charles Dickens.  Honestly I studied this book for a degree course and it was so very dull and so packed full of obvious stereotypical characters who were just there to be sneered at.  I hated it.  Alternatively the Bible.  It just seems to be an excuse for all sorts of unpleasantness that humanity gets to inflict on itself.  Yeah, yeah, there are good bits too but someone gave away the ending and I’ve disliked it ever since.

08.  One book you are currently reading  Sadly I am currently reading IT Governance: A Manager’s Guide to Data Security and BS 7799 / ISO 17799.  I won’t give away the ending though.

09.  One book you have been meaning to read Oh so many.  The Book Thief is definitely high on my list.

10.  Now I am suppose to tag 5 people  Oh I don’t know.  Anyone who wants to play.


Filed under Lazy Blogging, Religion, You decide

Some Christmas facts or there’s no Christ in Christmas.

In 596, St. Augustine undertook a mission to bring Christianity to the Anglo Saxons. He and his monks introduced the Christian calendar to Britain, including the Christmas date. The Christian church decreed Christ’s birthday be celebrated on December 25, a decision made by the Pope in 336. As Christianity spread across Britain, pagan celebrations were mainly engulfed by or assimilated in to Christmas ritual.

The word Christmas comes from Cristes maesse, or “Christ’s Mass.” There is no set date for his birth in scripture and it wasn’t celebrated on any particular day. However Christmas was first celebrated on the 25th of December in Rome in 336AD with an aim to replacing the popular pagan winter solstice celebrations

The first Christmas card was designed in 1843 by J.C. Horsley

The twelve days of Christmas are the days between Christmas Day and Epiphany (6th of January) and represent the length of time it took for the wise men from the East to visit the manger of Jesus after his birth. Popular belief holds that 3 wise men visited Bethlehem from the east bearing gifts. However there is no mention in the bible about the number of wise men who visited. Three gifts were brought – gold, frankincense and myrrh, but names commonly attributed to the wise men – Gaspar, Melchior, and Balthasar were added some 500 years later.

The 26th of December is traditionally known as St Stephen’s Day, but is more commonly known as Boxing Day. The reason it was called this is either alms boxes in church were opened and the money distributed to the poor, or alternatively it was named from the practice of servants receiving boxes of gifts from their employers on this day. Boxing day is NOT named after the practice of throwing out large numbers of boxes after Christmas!

English Puritan leader Oliver Cromwell banned Christmas between 1647 and 1660 because he believed such celebrations were immoral for the holiest day of the year.  Miserable git!

The first postage stamp to commemorate Christmas was issued in Austria in 1937

Why decorate fir trees?

This can be traced back to Roman times but was thought to be first introduced into this country in 1841 by Prince Albert. The custom of hanging fruit and baubles is both pagan and Christian. The decorations were originally used to symbolise the fruits of the earth and the fiery sun. Today seen in the form of tinsel and baubles.

Why a “kiss under the Mistletoe”?

Mistletoe has a magical reputation of conferring fertility. The berries grow in pairs on the stem and their milky, translucent appearance suggests male sexuality! A kissing bough would be suspended from a hook at the beginning of the Christmas season and young men were permitted to kiss any girl they managed to draw under the bough. These unsuitable associations led to many churches banning it and this still exists today in numerous parishes.

Why crackers and paper hats?

The earliest crackers were introduced in the 1850’s in order to copy the Parisian fashion of gift-wrapping bon bons. They contained novelties and mottos but did not crack – the chemically treated paper that cracks was a later addition. Paper hats were introduced at a similar time but the tradition of wearing a hat to look foolish dates back to the Christmas plays of the middle ages.

Saturnalia, a very popular Roman festival, was held in mid-December. It was celebrated in countries across the Empire, including Britain which was occupied by the Romans from 43 to the early part of the fifth century. The week long party was held in honour of the Roman God Saturn. Revellers enjoyed feasting, visiting family and sharing gifts. The festival offered temporary social freedom for slaves who were excused from work and allowed privileges, such as the right to gamble.

Father Christmas – was apparently born in Turkey in the fourth century, but no-one is sure when he moved to the North Pole.

Christmas stockings – When Santa lived in Turkey, he secretly gave money to three daughters by dropping it down the chimney. It landed in their stockings which were drying by the fire.

Mince pies – You should eat mince pies in silence, and make a wish with each one.

Christmas pudding – This was originally a type of porridge called frumenty, but more and more ingredients got added through the years.

There will be more lazy blogging later.


Filed under Atheist, Lazy Blogging, Pedantic

Santa statistics

No known species of reindeer can fly. But there are roughly 300,000 species of living organisms yet to be classified. While most of these are insects and germs, this does not rule out flying reindeer – though Santa and my uncle Ralph, in his drinking days, are the only people who’ve ever seen one. 

There are two billion children (small people under the age of 18) in the world. But since Santa doesn’t (appear to) handle most non-Christian children, that reduces the workload to about 15 per cent of the total (roughly 378 million according to the Population Reference Bureau). At a rate of say, 3.5 children per household, that’s 91.8 million homes. One presumes there’s at least one good kid in each.

Santa has 31 hours of Christmas to work with, thanks to the different time zones and the rotation of the earth, assuming he travels east to west.  That’s 822.6 visits per second. For each eligible household, Santa has 1/1000th of a second to park the sleigh, jump down the chimney, fill the stockings, put presents under the tree, eat any snacks, kiss mommy when available, get back up the chimney, hop in the sleigh and move on.

Assuming each of these 91.8 million stops are evenly distributed around the earth, we’re now talking about 0.78 miles per household – a total trip of 75.5 million miles, not counting stops to let Santa and the reindeer do what most of us must do at least once every 31 hours.

This means Santa’s sleigh moves at 650 miles per second, or 3,000 times the speed of sound. The fastest man-made vehicle, the Ulysses space probe, moves at a poky 27.4 miles a second (a conventional reindeer, by the way, can run 15 miles per hour, tops).

Assuming each child gets nothing more that a medium-sized Lego set (two pounds), the sleigh is carrying 321,300 tons, not counting overweight Santa. Conventional reindeer can pull no more than 300 pounds. Even granting flying reindeer could pull 10 times the normal amount, Santa would need 214,200 reindeer. This increases the payload (not counting the sleigh) to 353,430 tons, or four times the weight of the Queen Elizabeth II.

353,000 tons travelling at 650 miles a second creates enormous air resistance, which would heat the reindeer to incandescence in the same fashion as spacecraft or meteors entering the earth’s atmosphere. The lead pair of reindeer will absorb 14.3 quintillion joules of energy. Per second.  Each. In short, they will burst into flame almost instantaneously, exposing the reindeer behind them and creating deafening sonic booms. The entire team will be vaporized within 4.26 thousandths of a second. 

Santa, meanwhile, will be subjected to centrifugal forces of 17,500.06 gravities. A 250-pound Santa (a wee bit of an underestimate) would be pinned to the back of his sleigh by 4,315,015 pounds of force.

If Santa ever did deliver presents on Christmas Eve, he’s dead now.


Filed under Lazy Blogging, Pedantic


I want to go home.

Can I?


Filed under Lazy Blogging


So, here’s how it works:
1. Open your library (iTunes, Winamp, Media Player, iPod, etc)
2. Put it on shuffle
3. Press play
4. For every question, type the song that’s playing
5. When you go to a new question, press the next button
6. Don’t lie and try to pretend you’re cool and no disclaimers allowed.

Opening Credits:
When You’re Young – The Jam

Waking Up:
Just as Nice – Man of the Year

First Day At School:
To Have And To Have Not – Billy Bragg

Falling In Love:
Distance Equals Rate Times Time – The Pixies

Fight Song:
Beat Surrender – The Jam

Breaking Up:
Hands Clean – Alanis Morissette

Dawn’s Ballet – The Cast of Buffy the Vampire Slayer

Mental Breakdown:
Naked – Avril Lavigne

Eventually – Pink

Lover’s Rock – The Clash

Getting back together:
La La Love You – The Pixies

Walk On By – The Stranglers

Birth of Child:
Hell’s Ditch – The Pogues

Final Battle:
Samba – Bond

Death Scene:
Picture this – Blondie

Funeral Song:
It’s a Hard Life – Queen

End Credits:
Beauty On The Fire – Natalie Imbruglia


Filed under Lazy Blogging, Reasons to be cheerful