“What’s It All About … Alfie ?


It’s the question I get asked most if the subject of my blog crops up. Well the word “Alfie” isn’t usually part of the quest, Cillaalthough someone did sing that line to me on one occasion. However, it confuses most people when I tell them that it’s “About nothing, but then again about any and everything” And that’s more or less what it’s about. What I want to say and when I want to say it. I don’t have a theme. I tried that when WorkI first started with Blogger and failed, although the “From then to now” posts do have a sort of theme running through them. So this is possibly one of the reasons my posts are more random than some other blogs. Something could affect me today and I’ll post about it and then something else could happen tomorrow and I would post about that. Then it could be a couple of weeks before I’m ready to write again.

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It’s funny how politics and scandal seem to invade everyday conversation these days. The subject of Boris and the alleged ‘thigh METOOgrab’ came up at work on Monday. My colleague was completely bewildered by why she did not do anything about it at the time. I did try and explain, that 20 years ago someone who is trying to establish themselves and build a career simply did not ‘tell tales’ about an employer. If they did, it could have serious repercussions. It is only since the ‘#me too’ allegations came to the fore, that incidents are now being exposed.

That’s enough ‘politics’ for now. Normal service will be resumed in due course.


Funny old week …


I’m not going to mention Britain leaving the European Union (well maybe a little) as I think it has all been said. All I will say is that I’m very disappointed with the result. I fully expected it to go the other way but as many people keep saying “Democracy has spoken” or words to that effect. So we have to live with it. Get on and make it work. It will take a long time to convince me that the country ‘did the right thing’ but there is no going back now.

Then to cap it all England was unceremoniously dumped out of the Euro 2016 football tournament last night. Beaten by a team that, on paper should have lost. But that is what we have come to expect for a team that just does not seem to have any spark at all. Of course it is all the fault of the manager. It’s not the fault of the bunch of second rate no-hopers that were out there playing the game. No it’s the managers fault. No other industry would it happen.

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Breaking news … I have just spotted a Police Community Support Officer walking down our road

Now that is something that does not happen very often!

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Now, back to the job in hand. I have a cold. A full on, streaming, head aching cold. It started yesterday afternoon really and just got gradually worse. I can’t stop sneezing! I’ve gone through about 12 handkerchiefs today alone. One of my colleagues had the same thing last week, and I was hoping that I would not get it … but of course I did. I’ve not been to work today, and I’m staying at home tomorrow. Hopefully, I will be okay for Thursday but time will tell.

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K*** is out tonight. She is going with her sister to see Cats at the Leeds Grand Theatre. It’s not the kind of thing I would want to see, so I’m home alone. Well home alone with R*** to keep me company. Should be fun. He only came back from respite yesterday and it is all change for him. Up until yesterday, his daily routines would start from what was called ‘Day Opps’. This was an area that he and the only other ‘daily’ resident used as their base for the day. R*** also has a flat where he stays when he is on respite. The change has come about due to the other resident moving on. This means that they need to area for some other activities.

R*** is now going to be based out of his flat. We were expecting to have a bit of a rough ride with the change, but he appears to have accepted the change without any issue. I say ‘appears’, we never really know what is going on in his autistic mind when these major changes happen. The next few days will be the telling time.

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I think I have given in with Blogger. You may recall that I wanted to use Blogger as another blogging platform. It was going to be used as an outlet for a project I was working and I did not want it to get mixed up with my main WordPress blog. I think I have mentioned that I use a piece of software called “Open Live Writer (OLW)” for composing my posts. This software boasts that it connect to WordPress (which it does quite effectively) and also to Google Blogger. It is Blogger that I’m having an issue with. In OLW there is a tab, that lets you preview how your post will look, before you upload it. With WordPress, this works without a problem. However with Blogger, I cannot get it to show a preview. I know others have had the same issue, but it is a community project and so the support is a bit limited. So, after much deliberation, my Blogger blog is going.

Do they not know anything?


A friend reposted something on Facebook today which could not help laughing at. It’s not there now, as I deleted from my timeline. It was not something I wanted to see, but basically it showed a great deal of ignorance. The post went like this:

There was a picture of the Union Flag (the UK one if anyone is in any doubt) and with went the words

“Bolton council are encouraging schools to fly the Union flag (as opposed to the ‘Union Jack’, they got that right) and sing the national anthem at assemblies.”

The comment that went with it was ‘At least Bolton is English!’

My main problem was the bit about Bolton being English. Surely, if they were English, then they would fly the flag of St George. That being a red cross on a white background. Then there is the problem of St George himself. It is now widely understood that he was a soldier on the Roman army and that he was either Turkish or Syrian (hmmm … interesting in todays climate!)

We often see nationalists (to give them an actual name) marching with the Union flag and claiming that they are English. You’re not. You’re British under that banner.

Too stupid for words?


I was scanning my Facebook for anything interesting and I saw this in a comment thread. The thread relates to a meeting held by one of the prospective leaders of the Labour Party. It doesn’t matter which prospective leader, but someone had mentioned that there were ‘thousands’ in attendance. When this was queried, the original writer explained that the room held three thousand and that it was completely full. Now for the best bit, and this is a direct snip from that thread.

3000Now, I don’t know the person, and I don’t know the level of their math(s) skills, but I think even an idiot would know the answer to that one.

It annoys me to think, that people that make a comment like that, are probably the same people that complain about migrants not being able to speak English. I should probabley call it “The Queens English” so as not to offend those that feel the lanuage is actually owned by Queen Elizabeth II.

Rant over!

Twitter fun !!!!


Tonight I’ve been part of what I believe is called a “Twitter Storm”. The @NHAParty have been trying to draw peoples attention to the privatisation of the NHS. As part of this campaign the created a hashtag ‘#PublicDuty‘ and invited people to use this in Tweets in order to get the hashtag trending. Being a survivor of major heart surgery, I joined in, and at the last count, it was trending at No 3 in the UK.

I even posted my own tweet as part of the campaign. I do like to ‘retweet’ and quite often post my own comments, but this was a bit more serious than usual. What is happening here, is that the Conservatives, supported by the turncoat Liberal Democrats are trying to finish what Margaret Thatcher started. That is the total elimination of the NHS and in fact the elimination of all public services. It is their belief that these functions would be better served if they were run by the private sector for profit. It is my belief, along with many others that this it wrong and dangerous. It would also be prohibitively expensive. The average cost in the USA would be in the region of $49,000.00. As I understand it (but it is anecdotal) the full amount is not always covered by health insurance.

But it is all academic! The great British public will be fooled again into another 5 years of Tory misrule. Who will support them this time though? Methinks that the ‘turncoats’ Liberal Democrats will not enjoy another term in ‘power’, so it will be up to one of the other minor parties to take up the mantle. The question is which one? With arguments about the televised debates, I think the PM has been trying to cosy up to the Green Party. That would be interesting!

Bloody fireworks


      One of R***’s problems is noise sensitivity. I understand it occurs with many Autistic people. It is not the volume of the noise, more the pitch or tone. He can have his video and computer at the highest volume level and not bother at all, but there are some types of noise that causes him distress. Fireworks are an issue. We think it is the sudden randomness of the noise, rather than the noise itself, but it is a problem for him. This then in turn becomes a big problem for us. You see his frustration turns into anger which turns into aggression. This aggression usually manifests in nipping, biting and what we call ‘chinning’ whereby he will grab an arm/leg/neck and press down with his chin onto that part of your body. When he gets it right, and he invariably does get it right, it can be extremely painful. Then it is time for the medication. To be honest though, he has coped very well with the past few days. The medication did its job.

      What I get annoyed about, at this time of the year, and especially this year, is that people ‘extend’ Bonfire Night, beyond the 5th of November. I heard on the TV someone mention, that it is ‘Bonfire Weekend’ !! I also heard, on the radio young kids talk about it being ‘Firework Night’. When they were asked, why we celebrated, they did not have a clue. At the end of the day, what are we celebrating ?? We celebrate an historic event, whereby a group of people, did not agree with the Government of the day. That group of people decided to blow up the Houses of Parliament, in order to progress their cause. Today, we call that Terrorism !!!

Will it do any good ??????


So Wikipedia is having a ‘blackout’ in protest at the SOPA/PIPA. Will it make any difference ? Well I don’t really think so. Not here in Britain anyway. Two people have mentioned it in the office this morning. One thinks it is about ‘getting rid of internet porn’ and the other person thought it was because ‘Wikipedia is having money problems’. There was a brief mention on the BBC news programme at 08:00am, but nobody seems to have much of a clue really.

Does anyone really believe, that the governments, have no control over the internet ??? I only have to offend a public figure on Twitter or post an inflamatory status on Facebook to have the Police knocking on my door. No, in my opinion (and possibly others too) the  internet content is already monitored by ‘the authorities’ all over the world.

I wish Wikipedia, and the others that are supporting opposition to this type censorship, all the best luck in the world. However, at the end of the day government, whether in the UK or the US, will not change their policies, just because they may be unpopular.

Fathers day …. and the point is ?


     I really am against Fathers Day as a celebration day. A day that is thrust down everyone’s throat. It is in all the newspapers, imageon the radio, television, internet, although Google has struggled to come up with a iconic logo. It is commercialism at its worst.

     There a number of reason why I have a problem with this day, and also Mothers Day!! Firstly, whilst there is a large section of the population that can celebrate, there are a large number that cannot. Those people, who for whatever reason cannot become fathers. Those children, whose fathers are no longer around and equally, those fathers whose children are no longer around. The same applies to mothers. Secondly, it is just another American import, that does little to boost the economy of this country. Okay, so many shops will sell cards, and gifts and make a little profit. But it is not Britain/England that is making these gifts and cards. They are usually made in some Pan-Asian country that pays its workers a pittance. I also feel it can be divisive. Those couple who are lucky enough to have both fathers around have the dilemma, of who to celebrate the day with. not so bad if both fathers live within a reasonable distance, you can see both. I know at least two couple, whose parents live in different parts of the country. Very difficult if you have 200 miles between families!!

Rant over !!!!


     Good old Danny Alexander. Looks like the puppet telling the puppet master how to dance. http://tinyurl.com/66pqn7y Can the Lib Dems not see, that they are only there to make up the numbers, and not the policy. Are we are going to see this kind of thing a lot ? It will just give ammunition to the hard right in the Tory party, to attack the Trades Unions (it is Trades not Trade) It makes it look like the Government is pandering to the Unions and not negotiating with them.


         New camera seems to be working well. I’m beginning to get the hang of it. I’m not sure what format and size will be the best to use. I get the choice of 4:3 – 14mp, 4:3 – 5mp, 4:3 – 0.3mp, 3:2 12.5mp, 16:9 – 10.5mp and 1:1 – 10.5mp. From what I understand, each size is for a different picture use, and it is that that I am finding difficult to decide. For my use, I am tempted to use the 1:1 size, but the 4:3 – 0.3mp would be better for email and stuff !! I think, I am going to have to print out the full manual. May have to use the print save option (note to self – need more ink).

A new era (or any other cliche)


So here we are. A new Government and a ‘new’ type of politics. For my money, it has been clear from the very start, that Nick would be Dave’s stooge, and dance to any tune. It most probably will be different at national level, but Leeds has had a Tory/Lib-Dem coalition for the past few years, and you only have to look at how they handled the refuse dispute to see the way things could go.

Enough of politics. Well enough from me for the time being.

I just noted, in the local press, that a group of ‘angry residents’ are complaining that a phone company have put a temporary phone mast close to their gardens. I have to ask myself, how many of these people have mobile phones of their own, and how many of their kids have them !!!!

Quiz-night last night. We did quite well for a change. Still no win, but it was our highest score. Eldest is at home with us for a few days. He was supposed to be directing the village play this year, but has been let down by people who say yes then say no. He emailed everyone last week to say he was going to have to cancel the play. Everyone who had committed were disappointed, so a meeting has been arranged to see what can be pulled out of the fire. I have a strong suspicion, that he will not be directing again.

An interesting week ….


   Now the real face of politics will show itself !!! The ‘behind closed doors’ deals will start. All those standards that people voted for, cast aside in the selfish struggle for “power”. Yet again, the public voice of this country will be ignored.

   On a more positive note …… Leeds Utd are on their way back to the top! They don’t make it easy though. At one point, I actually thought they were going to lose the damn match. That would have been the finish, I think. All in all, at the end of the day, they won, and that is all there is to it. I have to say though, it is my considered opinion, that ‘Mad’ Max Credal has to go !!! At such an important match, to be sent off for ‘afters’ is totally uncalled for. Simon Grayson must really consider whether Max is right for the team now. After all, it could have been so different.

   A big well done to Chelsea. Their result was more a cricket score that a football score. And they did keep the ‘other’ team from the top.

A new week …. hurrah


   K**** was back at work today. Everyone has missed her, well at least I hope they have. It was good to see her back. All went quite well. No problems with the PDA’s, although I’ve logged 11 for repair, and have only received quotes for 10 of them. I know what will happen.  I’ll raise an order for 10 repairs and get it emailed off, then the 11th quote will come through, and I’ll have to raise another order. If I wait, I’ll have to ring the help-desk and ask what is happening.

  I got a random email for an MSN friend this morning. It had a link to a web based software called Status Checker. This is apparently a piece of software the is supposed to check to see who has blocked you on MSN. My Geek instincts told me not to open the thing, and to let the person who sent me it know. It turns out that I could have been right. MSN Status Checker is a valid web service, that tries to do what it says. However, as all Geeks and Nerds know, never click on links on emails, unless you know what the link is. Even then, I’m very wary. This thing could be a variant of the ‘koobface’ virus.

   S****’s back seems to be no better. He’s seen the doctor, but we don’t know what he said really. It would appear, that he needs to register with a doctor nearer where he lives, and then needs to get some physiotherapy. I’m not too sure about that though. It would be different if he was going to be living in Leeds for a long time, but he could be back at home next August, which is his work experience year, or more likely even further away.

   I seem to be getting quite a bit of pressure fro the candidate for the local Labour Party. Our MP is standing down at the next election, and I’ve had the three candidates contact me over the past few weeks. One of them, Karen Bruce has been in email contact, another one, James Ellis (I think) even came to see me. The third sent his CV, but he was so unremarkable, that his name has not even registered. I have to ask myself, where is all this interest when the General or even Local elections are happening. This is such a safe Tory seat, that they just don’t even bother to show their faces. How can they expect to get new voters. And by the same token, the Tories are so confident here, that we don’t see them either. At the last local election, the only literature we got from any party, was from the BNP, and that was pushed through the letterbox after 11:00 at night. As for the Lib-Dems, well the words ‘chocolate’ and ‘teapot’ spring to mind. I will not be voting, as I am no longer a party member, but if I did, Karen Bruce would be my choice.

   All done.