Sunday, 28 September 2008

BlackLOG - An adventure in 7 parts

Bit of an experiment this week. As I have such a disparate content, I thought I would try a slow release program, building this week’s Blog up on a day by day basis until it reached a crescendo. This gives much shorter chunks for you to get your teeth into. Rest assured I will try to keep the quality as low as ever.

(7 of 7) One for “Strictly” devotees & bluffers guide for “Strictly” widowers
Mrs B is well into her stride with the new series and has not missed a second of the broadcasts so far. There was a bit of a panic the other night when the series link recording failed to function, for one of the midweek shows. Fortunately, BBCi Player came to the rescue and I managed to stop Mrs B’s withdrawal symptoms from working up beyond a quivering bottom lip with a well-timed download.

My now proven inability as a dancer allows me the freedom to criticise each dancer with the freedom of the truly incapable. So without further ado my strictly thoughts so far:-

John Sergeant is a dead ringer for Joe Brand (I can’t believe it, just as I was typing this very line, Brucie cracked a joke about it. How spooky is that?). If you doubt me then you can contact Anna from my work who I was discussing it with during the week. Oh the shame, I’m already sliding into the whole depraved world, how low can I go….?

I can't say that I have ever seen
John Sargeant & Jo Brand in
the same room together

Karen Hardy looks like she is simply desperate to be voted off, with or without her dance partner Gary Rhodes. Just as long as she never has to dance with him again. While discussing “Strictly” with Anna the thorny subject of Gary’s wife cropped up. She was on the Midweek show. Anna described her as “definitely an imbroglio!!” A little harsh, perhaps, I just thought that she had the look of Gary’s overworked chief food taster.

Jodie Kidd – tall and looks like a great laugh but I get a bit confused when I see her cheeks. I can’t decide if she is related to either a chipmunk or hamster or possibly both. (Love to see Brucie try to steal that line…)

Jodie and those cute little cheeks,
looks like she could do with a
shave though!!

I had some nice comments but felt they would get in the way of my new “Strictly Bitchy Persona” so I have suppressed them. What can I say? Mrs B has unleashed a monster. So don’t mess with me the BlackLOG has been busy sharpening its claws….Meow…. and is ready to scratch your eyes out.

(6 of 7) The wonderful world of British TV
I watched a bit of "The Family" Documentary/soap this week. The kids have to be one of the best adverts for contraception I have ever seen, while the parents are a shining example of why euthanasia should not be dismissed out of hand. They actually manage to make the "Simpsons" look like a well-adjusted family.

"Tiger – Spy in the jungle" - you can’t argue with up-close and personal film of tigers in their own environment but sadly the editing spoilt it for me. Why the constant need to try and make the programme more exciting*? Well known voice-over, a slightly husky yet strangely trustworthy voice :-

“The tiger cubs have now been left on their own for 2 days. If their mother does not show up soon they are in real danger of being attacked and overcome by that vicious looking baby Sloth…”**

“A new tiger has been seen in the area and we have real fears he might be a recruiter for the infamous tiger sex slave trade…..”

Oh David, David what has become of your integrity? I’m not sure what the “talk over” equivalent is but Mr Attenborough’s is in danger of becoming like a once great actor sliding into decline from Blockbuster movies and Hollywood “A” list parties, bypassing the walk on parts in soaps and moving directly into the sad and seamy world of “Help I was once a celebrity please put me out of my misery”.

* I will not have comparisons with the BlackLOG, where editing is used for purely artistic purposes and besides, with the failure of the hidden house cams, I don’t have enough footage of Mrs B, McG and Mischief to carry it off on its own merit….

** Footage of a particularly wild and vicious Sloth – if you have a sensitive nature please proceed with caution.Sloth film Large cushions or possibly sofa maybe required to hide behind....

(5 of 7) ElleGee in the wars
Poor ElleGee, less than a month old and she* has already been in the wars. It is entirely Mrs B’s fault for not breaking the speed limit. If she had, then ElleGee would not have been in that exact place when a stone reared up and took a huge chip out of the windscreen. The poor thing looks like someone who is about to go out on a hot date and has just discovered the “Mother of all Zits” emerging on their previously flawless face and worse - it’s at the stage where it is starting to shine like a Belitia beacon….
Has anyone got any Clearasil?

* I see Mrs B managed to sneak in an extra S just before I published. You may have gathered that there is a bit of a disagreement in the household over the sex of ElleGee. If you are going to judge it on the spelling of the name then I will point out that being someone who has spent a lot of their life correcting the spelling of my own name "Niel" I don't hold with that argument. As it is we are now left with a very gender confused car.

(4 of 7) Salt & Vinegar peanuts
I put out some peanuts the other night but didn’t tell Mrs B that they were the salt & vinegar variety. Her face was a picture as the unexpected flavour hit her full on. She was rather like a cat chewing a wasp. Despite Mrs B’s protests that you should not mess with a good thing, I note that when I went back to the treats cupboard a couple of days later the packet was gone.

(3 of 7) A Balanced life
In an attempt to keep some balance to my life, not only am I carrying on the Yoga, (surprisingly, no gold stars yet - I’m still the kid at the back of the class who is constantly picked on to demonstrate how not to do it.*) but I have also taken up the water challenge, drinking at least 2 litres of water a day. This leaves me spending 50% of the time going to the toilet and the other 50% of the time wanting to go to the toilet. While I can’t deny there is undeniably a balance to this, I’m not convinced that it is the balance that I am really after…..

* I suspect this will always be the case, however long I continue my yoga career.

(2 of 7) Genius
I recently tried out the new ITunes- Genius option. You select a song and "Genius" then creates a complementary list of other songs from your own collection. (Natural born salesmen that Itunes are they also provide a list of essential tracks that appear to be missing from your collection.) Sounds great but it does take out all the fun of compiling the list yourself (which I guess is no bad thing since I am out of the habit of creating lists through a lethal combination of lack of time and inclination). There are two flaws with “Genius”. First it appears to have an unhealthy ABBA fixation. I have around 30 ABBA songs in a collection of over 60,000, yet no matter what song I choose – it could be "The Jam – Going Underground", "Oasis – Wonderwall" or "Panic at the Disco - Lying Is The Most Fun A Girl Can Have Without Taking Her Clothes Off" - at least 5 ABBA songs appear on the list. (Whilst listening to one ABBA song is fun, two is pushing it, once you get to three and beyond you might as well start dressing like the Village People and listening to Kylie and Judy Garland records). The second and infinitely more serious drawback is that because of Apple wars (I thought they had signed a peace treaty) “Genius” does not recognise any Beatles songs. To me that's a bit like going out for an Indian meal and finding there is no curry on the menu.....

(1 of 7) So that is F1 dead to me
Oh no, it’s Mr B on his Soap box. Run away and hide or skip to the next section that, if you are reading this live, will be tomorrow…

As promised a couple of weeks ago, when the ludicrous penalty was imposed on Hamilton at the Belgium Grand Prix, I vowed to wash my hands of the sport unless the FIA over-ruled the embarrassing decision by the Belgium race stewards. Sadly, the FIA have proved once again to be so Ferrari-biased that they would rather see the red cars triumph than allow for proper racing.

I do realise that F1 will not even notice my departure, let alone care but it now has become an issue of principal. I suspect I will be one of the few who are true to their word and the enraged fans from a few weeks back will let the FIA get away with it once again as they are mesmerised by a shiny new circuit and, gosh, night driving. Do they not realise that it is just the The Emperor's New Clothes and they are being suckered into continuing to support the same old corrupt empire? It makes me sad that I will no longer get to watch this once great sport but life is too short and watching F1 has become more and more like playing a game against someone who constantly changes the rules of a game in order to win.


  1. Of course they got their comeupence today when quote:

    Massa pulled away from his stop prematurely, taking the fuel rig and hose with him up the pit lane. He knocked over one of his mechanics, who needed medical treatment, and almost collided with another car :end quote

    I only ever watched F1 when my brother was running a fantasy league, but Mr Imo always makes sure he watches the start, as apparently "that's the most interesting bit." Of course, that was before Ferrari introduced 'Driving out of pitlanes with tubes still attached to our cars' to liven things up.

  2. I'm just waiting for the FIA to give Massa 7 Bonus points for bringing extra excitement into the sport. Either that or Mclaren to be excluded from this season for daring to overtaking Ferrari in the constructors race with out written permission. Two unseen races down and I can't say I'm missing the sport at the moment, if anything Mrs B seems to be suffering the withdrawal symptoms. The shakes, shortness of breath and hardly able to walk, but that might just be the after effects of the long bike ride I took her on to help avoid this weeks race.....

  3. Mr B, having stuck with the bluetooth trials and tribulations, moving through F1 dissatisfaction -have you morphed completely into GRUMPY OLD MAN???

  4. I'm prepared to accept "slightly tetchy at times and not as young as I once was"

  5. I like the new drip fed style it sort of fits in with my daily horoscope read/amusing niel story thing.


  6. Mr B, I think I preferred you as a weekly feast rather than a daily nibble, but will stick with it to see if my eating habits improve with practice

  7. Nice that I can cause a split in the ranks. It's 2:1 against the daily so far....

  8. I quite like knowing that if I look into the Blacklog, there'll be something new to read and one won't think "oh bother, I've wasted 2 seconds of precious surfing time when I could be playing minesweeper".

  9. Imo. I'll try and keep the BlackLOGs short, I would hate to interrupt the Minesweeper fest....

  10. aghhhh scarey picture of Jo Brand, but you made up for it with the cute hamster.

  11. Imo, Glad I saved your day with a picture of Jodie. I feel a bit mean reporting back that I discovered that Jo Brand + hamster = Jo Brand.

  12. It's true Niel definitely made the Jo Brand connection way before Brucie.



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