Sunday, 30 November 2014

Guerilla Gardening

105 mm shell 4.5 inch naval shell casingsI was a perfectly behaved child this morning because when I finally woke up, I started reading instead of making noise etc.
I had breakfast in the supermarket again but the whole place was heaving and I had a 20 minute wait for my food so Jof bought me 2 more books, easy money. We are decorating the brass cannon shells but you can't get baubles big enough for the massive ones so Jof said let's put festive twigs in them, Bud was quite scathing about this idea but it turned out to be quite good so we bought 3 sprigs of twigs and now we no longer have ordinary ordnance.
2 years ago, I collected conkers, as every good boy does. This time, instead of trying to plant them out on the common (which didn't work last time), we selected only the very largest and planted them in big pots in the back yard. This is completely unsustainable because they get big quickly and we planted far too many and all the other conkers we threw in the bottom of the pots for compost sprouted anyway and we had about 70 trees. Even the Xmas nuts from last year that we planted just for fun came up and we had half a dozen nut trees taller than me and that was after only 1 year.
So we knew they had to be planted out, for every sapling is sacred, and we know a song about that, don't we, children. So he said let's go and plant them on the common opposite Bens' house and I said can I play with Ben and Jof sorted it and all I had to do was walk across the road after planting out the trees and it would all work out.
On the way we discussed what pattern to plant them in, for it is an opportunity to be naughty little boys.
guerilla gardening on milton common  moorings way portsmouthAn X would be quite easy to do. A circle would be more difficult, the ground is uneven and you'd be unlikely to meet up with the trees you planted earlier. An M would be better, but ditto for difficulty. But the obvious one was a willy. After a few decades, the willy made of horse chestnut trees would be visible from space, depending on how often Google Earth update their imagery. But we opted for a simple straight line, and he dug and I installed the baby trees and we moved across the face of the earth leaving a trail of trees marching across the landscape. At one point we met a boggy area and brambles so we simply turned left and left another line of trees marching away into the distance. Maybe most of them will get eaten by foxes or trampled by wildebeest but at least we tried.
Then Robert jogged past us and I went to Bens' house and set off the singing Darth Vader lots and found the plastic microphone and sang merry songs of madness to each other for ages.

Saturday, 29 November 2014

Paying Respects

family xmas fireplace tudor building grove place nursling southamptonJof was at work today so we made up some tasks to keep ourselves busy.
So the first thing we thought of was to go and see Grandad because Grandma died a year ago tomorrow and he was making the pilgrimage back to the old medieval village they chose to retire to for 25 years.
Now he has a fireplace that is in fact about the same size as the last one but about 500 years older, gotta love that Elizabethan brickwork.
He gave us a sackful of Xmas and birthday presents which makes all the difference given that I have already been told that all I will get for festive donations is an orange.
He was due to go and meet some old golfing friend but through the kindness of his heart he agreed to change his plans (change is bad) and fit in with ours by driving down the same road to the Botany Bay Inne which is basically a pub with abundant parking facilities on the way to Dorchester and we met there and he had Whitebait and we had the carvery and we all laughed and felt just like Good Old Team M again, which is 3 blokes spread across 9 decades but all suspiciously similar in terms of madness and length of hair.
shire country village churchyard lillington sherborne hamstone
Then we split and he went off to Crewkerne while we navigated the newly resurfaced back turnpikes of Upper Dorset to Lillington, and found Grandma in the tranquil historic lichen-encrusted churchyard.
I placed the pot of assorted plants upon her and she didn't complain because she's quiet nowadays. Then we checked out some of the older gravestones at their various rakish angles, some with little surround-fences and some without, but the older the plot, the less was legible due to lichen, weathering and illiterate stonemasons, you know the way it is. I've been up that tower lots of times, but it was closed today.
Then we drove back through that medieval village (population 26, not including horses) and saw the old house, practically unchanged apart from the cut-back hedges, and grooved on through to the other side. On Gordon's Lane we met 2 male yearling pheasants, splendidly coloured but as clever as teabags, we had to get out of the car to push them to the side of the road to avoid killing the poor little morons.
I have been reading solidly while in the car and somewhere near Bishop's Caundle I finished Harry Potter 2. Luckily, HP 3 was on the back seat. But then we met Sturminster Newton.
playpark tubular slide dorset county councilWe do not go that way normally, but Bud had bought yet another brass shell casing off some crowd in the middle of nowhere so we had to stop and pick it up, and lo, it was taller than the 75mm Sherman Tank round and it polished up nicely. So we enjoyed the deep deep quite whiffy countryside and the way that they do take care of their little people by building some very decent swingparks and we did 2 of them.
Un-named park had a very nice wooden frame with metal tube slide and the War Memorial Park had a snake-like bench and a well-oiled roundabout.
Then we took the long and winding road back through the sleepy metropolitan conurbations of Shillingstone and Spetisbury and made Jof a cup of well-deserved tea, and watched the Harry Potter + Chamber of Secrets film because I had finished the book. This book + DVD deal is really working out for me.

Friday, 28 November 2014

Space Cake Ships. Spaceship Cakes. Did I just say that?

man falls down inspection pit in garage pushing carIn school today we got a visit from a Brownie. No, not a special student party cake but a Girl Guide Brownie which is like a Cub Scout but a girl. And not like any of the perfectly good girls we've got in our Cub Scout section, more like, er, well, I don't know, just different, but the same age.
She told us that she'd been making brownies and I shouted out "O so you've been cooking each other" and the whole class laughed, for I am a comedian. But then she said yes, it was indeed the special student party cake and she explained about dripping the melted chocolate on and not letting it sag in the middle, bit of a sore point in brownie-making apparently.
Remember the ships auction from yesterday? Well, just to prove that I WAS there and I DID try, here's a screenshot from this morning when I was highest bidder for 3 hours. Then, of course, the big boys with the real money woke up and HMS Fearless (Lot 1) finally went for £1450, taking into account that you still have to add the buyer's premium (auctioneer fees) of 15.5% and VAT (sales tax) at 20%.
qinetiq craftsman model ships auctioneers peaker pattinson
Too rich for my blood. It was a crying shame to see the 4.2 metre aircraft carrier HMS Illustrious go for £1149, but there you go, some went for over £3000. OK, so I could have bought several. But could I justify it?
In swimming I got my first ever nosebleed when Connor kicked me in the face. Now, I may not be a rough'n'tumble footballer like Ben or Harry but to go this long without a nosebleed is an achievement. I was so proud.

Thursday, 27 November 2014

A Ship too Far

driving while not in control of your vehicle licence offence failYou know every now and then, an opportunity comes up and you either have the money or you don't, and you either have the chutzpah to take it or you don't? Like the decommissioning of all the old red phone boxes in the 1990s, when you could practically take away these listed buildings for free if you had a truck, and within years they were a priceless novelty bought by individuals and hotel foyers alike?
qinetic defence contractor online auctionHave a look at the Peaker Pattinson online auction and their QinetiQ sale. 17 craftsman-built 1/50th scale unique copper display models of British warships and assorted naval vessels are being sold off by the defence contractor. Type 42 destroyers, aircraft carriers, frigates and the Royal Yacht Britannia could be yours! These items are quite big, though, 60 kg or so and ten foot long.
qinetiq online auction 1:50 scale models of naval shipsI was going to buy one or 2 and lend them to Elizabeths' Mum at her ship museum and get my name in the papers again - plucky pipsqueak saves imperial jewel for grateful nation - but overnight the bid prices have gone up from £60 to £870 so I don't think I'll bother. But if YOU are a ship-mad collector, Manchester United football team, Qatari billionaire or Naval museum then maybe you could try and secure HMS Illustrious, Campbeltown, Invincible or Birmingham.
peruvian torch cacti mescaline hallucinogenicToday at school Jof asked me to "drop off a bag of sugar" to her contact in the staff room, I can see a glittering future for me as a drugs mule. This sackful of sugar sachets has been languishing in a cupboard at her work for some time, maybe even from before the time when EU rules on arsenic contamination were tightened.
Then I split yet another pair of trousers, in the exposed peanuts area, and I was sitting down at the time, honest. I had to go home in my PE shorts.
Todays' job was to collect some cacti from Dear Followers Martin and Zoe. They have been looking after them for ages and their new house won't have space so we secured them to the back seat of the car with 2 seatbelts and only got prickled several times. They really are frighteningly spiny.

Wednesday, 26 November 2014

A Digital Orange for Xmas

lobotomy sex change operation offered by fairground quack
I already know I'm getting practically nothing for Xmas and birthday, Bud says that to honour people of Nanna's generation, I shall get an orange, because back then kids thought themselves lucky if they got an orange, because they'd never seen one before. I just hope I get a digital one, rather than one of those old-fashioned clockwork oranges.
Started to get some replies to my party invites and took Ben home. It was still raining so we elected to stay in and Lego and Film and Stuff Our Faces.
true lies dvd for underage viewersBen said he's seen the Blues Brothers which is boring apart from the car crash so we chose True Lies as a film of equivalent age label but with much more laughter. So we sat and farted all afternoon while clambering over each other, quacking, arguing and occasionally watching.
We'd not got half way through when we were sent upstairs for play-fighting and proceeded to wreck my room.
I find it most unfair that we can jointly trash my room but only I have to clean it up so I persuaded Jof to do it for me by crying. Then we all watched Harry Potter 1 which is quite long and we all had stiff bottoms by the end.

Tuesday, 25 November 2014

Crazy Paving ain't all it's cracked up to be

how a pregnant woman feels fat with saggy titsToday one of my few Xmas presents has arrived, the Harry Potter DVD box set. I feel safe in the knowledge that it is my reward for reading all seven HP books, and blissfully unaware that my reward for having read all 7 books is ... to have read 7 books. I really must get some nicer parents.
I handed out all the leftover party invitations and half the class said they wanted to come as well, apart from the twins who said they can't swim.
boy using tablet and pc to play minecraftIn another leisure time earning task, I finished my maths homework so I could Minecraft. This entails watching a Youtube video of someone building components of a sandstone mansion and copying their every move onto my tablet. What I really need is 73 hours in a day, with possibly as many as 5 set aside for sleep.
In gymnastics I sustained multiple head injuries again because of limited tumbling skills and weak arms which collapse my wave function just when I'm vertical.

Monday, 24 November 2014

Ready Steady Cook

predator child in class kills teacher with shoulder gunRecently I've got back into cooking programmes because sometimes that's all Jof will let me watch. So at suppertime I sometimes say that I like the contrasting textures of the signature dish and that it could use a few more croutons.
accelerated reading class prize large smarties tubeToday I got Top Banana which is not a squishy fruit superhero but the award for accelerated reading, earned for ploughing my way through Harry Potter 1 and making substantial inroads into HP 2. I didn't know Smarties came in such a big tube outside of the duty-free shop.
In Cubs we learned that carbon monoxide is a colourless odourless undetectable poison, how to detect a fire behind a closed door and that if you find a gas leak you have to turn off the water supply. We also did Dangers In The Home which is like the Dangers In The Bedroom we did in Beavers, this time I suggested knives and stabbing weapons but I didn't do it in the Terminator voice so nobody picked up on it.

Sunday, 23 November 2014

It's Life, Gym, but not as we know it

portsmouth gymnastics centre alex way Struggled awake tennish for a boiled egg and mango chunks, as you do.
There was pretty well only 1 thing to do today and that was Dilly's party at the gymnastics centre. Jof dropped us off and went shopping and we were almost the first ones there, Dilly was late to her own party!
Because both Dilly and I gym there anyway, the list of attendees (Genevieve, Olivia, Siena, Daniel, Oliver, Flynn inter alia) was strong on gymnasts and 2 of us actually wore the shirt. It was also strong on familiar faces from my old school and so it was just like old times as we screamed at each other and told Bud to take his glasses off so we could beat him up.
portsmouth gymnastics centre birthday party We had the whole place to ourselves and we trampolined, ran around and generally got all pink-faced with exertion. The foam pits are ace for throwing each other in and having swordfights and stuff. I always make a den under the parallel bars support by removing all the foam, this time Adam and I ganged up on Eva, seen here retreating.
At the food time we gathered in one loud and noxious conglomeration and grabbed sweetmeats and small chop* galore.
portsmouth gymnastics centre birthday partyThey had a chocolate fountain which is a 3-level aluminium self-heating pot that continuously overflows with melted chocolate so you put strawberries and marshmallows on a fork and dip it in and wait for the chocolate to solidify and it goes everywhere but particularly all over your face. Some people put 4 marshmallows on at once!
But all too soon we had to go and Jof had bought some epic red baubles of 80 mm diameter so we filled a couple more of our artillery shells with xmas cheer, and Jof let me watch Last Action Hero. Then he said that I had to clean myself so much in the shower he could eat his dinner off me, which is something they do in Japan, apparently.
* 'Small chop' is west African for finger food.

Saturday, 22 November 2014

Load of old Baubles

Up at 10, because I'm worth it. I chose tuna pasta for breakfast, because I'm normal. Dragged round the shops because I'm a kid.
Actually, I didn't mind that, because I got 2 Lego items in John Lewis but they didn't have any of the Xmas trees we wanted in stock and we had to order it online anyway, much more boring. Saw Erin's car in the Waitrose car park and I wanted to put a ticket on it saying £100 fine for parking here but it had gone by the time we got back.
christmas decorations for tree stockings icicles
Jof went out again for a magnum of bubbly for the PuddleMummies so I chose "Total Recall" as my Saturday movie. Then I went into the loft and got down the Xmas box and arranged the baubles and leftover crackers and stuff all over the dining room table and ditched half of it and Jof got home and ditched some more.
We have chosen an 8 foot tree so got rid of the old tired embarrassing stuff like the joyous plastic reindeer and the bits of tinsel that were only 6 inches long and the baubles where there was only 1 left and suchlike. The red baubles fit really well on our collection of old artillery shells, just making use of the things around us. Then I demanded that everyone stopped their activities to play Risk: I managed 20 minutes before announcing that I was going to watch TV. Then a further 30 minutes before I opted for Minecraft.
Why am I being shouted at?

Friday, 21 November 2014

It's a Deal, It's a Steel

cat attacks remote controlled helicopterHooray for Friday!
This week is Anti-bullying Week as well as Hero Week so I was part of a group of 12 who did 'Anti-Bullying' in big letters and made up poems for each letter and presented them to the whole school, which does not have any bullies in it, apart from the big lump of stupidity (IQ 74) in my class but they don't talk about him because that would mean admitting it.
Our 'My Hero' posters were put up and everyone gathered around my one of Arnold Schwarzenegger and did poses and went Raarg and one guy took his shirt off to emulate Arnie. Other heroes are My Dad, and various footballers.
builder renovations pallet pile of hardcore steel h girder goldsmith avenueGot the party invitations through the post, now all we have to do is find out people's real names so we don't have to put things like "Archie Football" on the invite.
On the way home we saw some builders renovating a house like we did with ours, opening up the kitchen by removing a wall and inserting a sturdy steel support. But their steel was hilarious, about 17 foot long and takes 8 men to lift. We looked at the house when it was on sale, smaller than ours but on the main bus route overlooking the park. Erin is going to get the builders in to open up her kitchen soon, I wonder how big her steel will be.
You know the thing when you just have to come back from a night out painting the town red and you've got a Policeman's helmet and a traffic cone ... well, challenge is up for anyone to steal a 600 kilo steel
just saying

Thursday, 20 November 2014

The Darwin Awards and other Tails

religious couple abstinence from sex you're doing it wrongCurrently I have just finished reading Harry Potter 1, the Philosophers' Stone. In it, Fluffy is a 3-headed dog that guards the 3rd floor trapdoor leading to the Stones' secret repository. You can't help wondering whether if 'Fluffy' had a Tinder account, that good old Cerberus himself would right-swipe her and get a hook-up invite.
Due to their ... unique phenotypes, they're just made for each other. But would their pups have 3 heads, 6 heads, or a range? Would any of them be headless doggies, and which would be more frightening? Aah, the genetics of mythological creatures, never a dull moment. As for the couple from Topeka, it's probably for the best, people that clever would drag down the global average IQ.
gurning boy smilingAnyway, 'twas a day off today so as per instructions from Grandad, I located Austria, Norway and Port Elizabeth in the atlas and determined that his golfing friend from the 1950s lives further than where Grandma is buried but not as far as Torquay.
The latest art project needs the outline of my head (don't ask) so I gurned for this photo and the camera got so close I'm all distorted anyway, like in the house of unreasonable mirrors at Wookey Hole. It is the face only a mother could love.
The cacti have made their annual migration indoors due to the temperature and we're planning on buying a new Xmas tree.

Wednesday, 19 November 2014


Wednesday is Ben day and on the way home he challenged me to dares. These can get out of hand all too quickly but he did a little dance and sang a rhyme and I was so taken with the performance that we never got onto any dangerous dares. I tried the dance but could only manage running-on-the-spot and singing DoubleDevilDare Ding Dong.
Because we have to choose the 20 people to attend our joint birthday party we dared each other to invite:
standing on junior baby swingsMy old friend BRICK and all his mates
Me old mucker SEWER and all his drainy friends
My old chum LEAF and all his frond friends
... Poisonous snakes ...
... Zombies ... and on it went, all the way home.
Jof had made new flapjacks so we replenished the mousetraps and took a box of them to the park where we met Poppy and Jessica and Edward and Owen and LittleMax and we all did football and throwing the ball at each others balls when standing on the baby swings, and all the usual games.
But once it had got dark we actually sat down and made a competent list of attendees which has been officially ratified by the paying parents and I have dared him to invite Jessica and he dared me to invite Holly and by Jove, we've got a full complement of 20 and 8 of them are girls, a very generous proportion for a pair of 9 year-olds.
doodle map of willy world boobs and butt rude funny drawing squirting penises
Then we designed Willy World which has a boobs and butt section with a Wee shop, Hall of Willies, Boobs ride and flying poo. All standard stuff, really.

Tuesday, 18 November 2014

Chasing the Disco Ball around

honesty in job interview funny cartoon human resourcesCouldn't believe it. Jof took a day off to go swimming, she'd better not get used to it.
So she came to school and spoke to my teacher about the class bully, well known to all the parents but the teachers aren't allowed to admit he exists.
Earlier, I took in my homework and Miss M recoiled in horror at the large topless picture of Arnie flexing thereupon and so did everyone else, just as well my hero wasn't Pamela Anderson, that'd have opened a few eyes, I can tell you.
harry potter philosophers stone accelerated reading courseBut I have turned a corner in that Harry Potter and the Filusterfers' Stone has become an obsession. I read it in the car to gymnastics, on the floor of the gym when we magically arrived 15 minutes early and in the car on the way home again. While I'm conscious that I will get maximum reading points if I finish it, I actually want to see what happens and revel in the idea of 6 other books, each bigger than the last.
Plus I got Badge 2 in Gym due to a decent cartwheel and am now working for Badge Bronze, confusingly. Jof was at a Friends of the School meeting and has volunteered us to be Satan's Little Helpers at the Grotto part of the Xmas Fayre, whether we wanted to or not.

Monday, 17 November 2014

The Pounding in your Pocket

engrish funny sign fail horses parasailingToday was a day of Fail, and not just because it was a Monday.
The first I knew about it was when a bedraggled Bud picked me up, scooterless. This was because he goes running on a Sunday and takes a single doorkey in a bank bag with a couple of emergency pound coins. Of course, if you don't remember to re-attach the key onto the main keyring afterwards, you'll be locked out of the house ...
We walked home in the rain and drove down to Jof at her work and I queued up behind some elderly and slow grannies but eventually they shuffled off (no mortal coils involved this time, sadly) and we got her key and went home.
arnold schwarzenegger bodybuilder and film star school project We sold Grandad's old typewriter on Ebay and where you start off at 99p to encourage bidding, if you don't look out, that's the price you get. So, having sold a typewriter for 99 massive p, we tried to deliver it to a house near the nudist beach but they didn't answer the door, so that was a journey wasted, possibly more in petrol than sale money.
Then we tried for the 32nd time to book my birthday party but they seem to be allergic to answering the phone.
Still, I got a Bronze Swimming Certificate in Cub Scouts, just like Rimmer. My homework is to do a little poster/information display about someone I consider to be my hero. I chose good old Arnold Schwarzenegger because he's the big shooter and bomber in all my favourite films, but I couldn't tell them about which bit of Predator I liked best or why Total Recall was better than the Running Man etc because I'm not supposed to have seen them all at age 8. So I focused more on his big muscles and prizewinning physique, and that he lived in Pompey for a bit.

Sunday, 16 November 2014

A Truncated Pyramid

Not a bad sleep considering the late night, accepted egg on toast after exploding, babbling and making automatic weapons fire noises for only an hour.
When a day is registered as empty, I like to fill it with my own choice of activity and demanded to go to the Pyramids. This seventies-style waterworld occupies a prime piece of real estate right on the seafront and has been closed for nearly a year following salt water damage sustained during the storms of last winter.
Their website goes on about how much council money they've spent on the refurbishment and we got there with plenty of time to spare. The foyer has a new coffee shop. It also has a big poster saying what they've spent the money on, mostly "behind the scenes" stuff, which in Calabria would mean 95% of the money was skimmed off by the mafia.
Anyway, we were issued with orange wristbands and got changed in the same cold changing rooms with the same rubbish on the floor and the same cracked tiles and rusty bits.
inflatable pool party pyramids southsea gym membershipThe pool was functionally identical but they have definitely installed coloured lights at just below water level. The Cobra waterslide was darker inside, I think they've painted it, and there was much more water in it so you splash more on exit. The blue and green waterslides were exactly the same apart from a squirter 2/3 of the way down, but you can still get stuck if you don't push hard enough.
We did some handstands in the main pool and Bud launched me and I flew through the air gracefully and he even launched Jof which would not have been possible before she went to diet classes. The little pool was closed again and the lifeguard said it was because it wasn't busy enough.
The waterslides still have the old familiar warning sign about do not slide if pregnant etc but half of the letters are still missing so instead of "Green and Blue Flume" you get "GREEI   LUE    FL" which if you ask me is cute.
But we did get super-duper wave alert which went on for ages and I got up close and personal with a girl in bikini corner where the waves crash with extra strength and have been known to cause bikini malfunctions.
But then they closed the waterslides and then they turfed us out of the pool completely and we'd only had 50 minutes. It was because someone had booked an inflatable pool birthday party and we all stood at the side looking at the bouncy castle which looked like a spaceship. It was one of my gymnastics friends that also does Friday cricket.
So we just watched TV all afternoon instead. I'm going to make a Lego gun, possibly a .50 cal sniper rifle.

Saturday, 15 November 2014

The Scouts Swimming Gala Event

st james church milton pews and embroidered cushionsSaturday at last so I woke up at 1025, just 5 minutes before the fair at the church where I do Scouts. I voluntarily put on my scout uniform and played roll-the-coin a few times and entered the meat raffle but there was precious little else to do unless you're a granny who likes tea and cakes.
Jof told us to take a load of assorted stuff to the charity shop so we drove to Southsea and went in the hoity butchers and bought Jof some blue cheese which will make her feel guilty but she'll eat it anyway.
Then I watched Commando again while chores happened, and then I watched Stargate to make it a double bill.
We've been looking forward to the Scouts swimming gala for ages because my group gets to compete against the JB's group, not that the parents are competitive or anything.
Sadly due to paranoia and witch-huntery, I can't have a photo of the event, because stifling pool rules prohibit it. Written on the natural assumption that people will perform unspeakable acts when confronted with wide-angle imagery of distant children in swimsuits in a team event, it means I'll just have to remember it. In 25 years, when I'm an Olympic champion, I dread having the following conversation with my own kid.
"Daddy, can I see a picture of you winning an event when you were my age?"
"Yes, son. Here is a picture of my trophy. We couldn't do it on Leisure Centre property, so it's taken in the car park of a nearby Tyre and Exhaust workshop."
"But Daddy, what's that blobby thing?"
"It's my hand, sticking out from behind a brick wall. And I had to wear a gluten-free glove, which had to be pixellated. And I had to be identified as Child C. I was proud to join a long line of happy Child Cs."
mountbatten centre portsmouth scout swimming competitionJof heroically joined us even though she'd had a gruelling day at work trying to please angry customers and then sell them stuff, and we drove through the night to the Mountbatten Centre. The Scout leaders met the contestants and took us through to 'Poolside' where we sat in numbered groups and babbled happily to ourselves.
The swimming pool area is absolutely ace although sauna-like - I just love the big curved roof beams and the echoes are funny - and we sat obediently and waited for our events, and when you see there's 46 events and 13 competing scout groups and oodles of contestants, it is a logistical nightmare for those lucky activity organisers.
We all got colour-coded hats, my lot were dull dark and the JBs were bright pink, I'm saying nothing.
mountbatten centre portsmouth swimming poolBut kids were directed to the leaping-off zones and the hooter blared and races were raced and bit by bit my turn came round and I came second in the backstroke first-round race which meant I was into the final! The top 2 go through.
Robert and Johnny also came second so were through to the finals but Ben got fear of failure and got in a state poor chap and went home. The under-12s went in the long lanes at the deep end but us cubs did widths in the shallow bit, there were a few also-swims (not also-rans) but mostly the standard was very high. Finlay also had fear-of-being-told-off-for-failure and sat sobbing at the side.
In other parts of the rather splendid sports complex our venture scout Ryan raised ticket money to fly to the Scout Jamboree in Japan and there was a judo competition in the sports hall where I got Richard Kiel's autograph.
In the end, Robert did well and Johnny got first prize in the relay even though he had to stop and pull his trunks back up, no pictures of this incident are available.
mcdonalds fratton way portsmouth serving areaI was in the backstroke finals and came 5th, ahead of Samuel who is in my swimming lessons group but way behind Eddie F from my class at school who won it! He is the happy chap in green in the first picture.
Johnny's group was strong on girls who seem to be better swimmers than the boys.
This Scouts lark is a real crossover thing because you get to meet familiar faces from all facets of your life, from Gym, Swim, Class, Park, everything, amazing how many people you know in this town. In fact, our Scout Group Leader bought his house off Erin. He gave me a special award for being the only cub to not go off on one. Because my group had finished early due to lack of Venture Scouts, I got changed relatively quickly and Jof kept mentioning food in the car all the way home so we agreed on a MacDorgels and we had naughty burger and chip-type meals to make up for all that exercise, honest, and watched Futurama and football, knowing that I didn't have to get up tomorrow, hurrah!

Friday, 14 November 2014

In Need of Children

laws of robotics don't invade spaceToday is Children in Need day again, you can tell because people keep Google-searching the picture of me in my home-made spotty T-shirt a couple of years back.
But my school is choosing to mark it by having a "Hero-Day" where we're all supposed to dress as a fictional superhero of our own invention, unlike those real superheroes out there. Expected themes are "Stop-a-Bully Man", "Clean-Teeth Boy" and "Spread-Love-and-Kindness Woman".
I have chosen to be the Terminator who prunes the wasters, expunges the wretched and deletes the worthless, although I grudgingly admit he's more of an anti-hero, plus I've got the outfit so poo to you.
In the end I came second in my class, the top prize was taken by Ingrid who was "Captain Cheese-Touch". While this may sound highly suspect for an 8 year-old girl, I can explain. "Touch" is a game rather like Tag or It. Someone has the touch and has to pass it on by sampling by physical contact an opponent, as before. But you get to choose what kind of Touch you have, and Ingrid chose Cheese Touch.
lego world joint effort wynter and sylver secret donor siblings
She had a shoulder-gun like the Predator that shoots whiffy gobbets of 6 kinds of cheese, amongst which are blue cheese, human cheese and mouse cheese. Any one of these can give a seriously cheesy discharge to the girls, and boll weevils to the boy victims, and we're not talking cotton bolls here.
At home I was just Legoing when Bud invited a work friend in for tea and her 2 kid girls invaded my room. Normally I am allergic to girlies in the Lego room after Alannah, Destroyer of Worlds, totally ruined everything, and Maisie The Even Younger (sister of LittleMax) broke my Lego helicopter.
But with these 2 it was a case of too many cooks don't spoil the broth 'cos one was dressed as Captain America and we made an entirely adequate world on a grey square and then at snack time I had spinach and ricotta pasta with yogurt and they asked for "ebola cereal" and they ate some of my coco pops in their bowls of cereal which is no problem because I've got bored of coco pops.

Thursday, 13 November 2014

Dry Hard VIII (The one in the Garage)

computer console desk women only car park cessna crash funnyToday my old mucker from Wimborne infants joined my class. Straight away Naughty Oakley punched him, for he is a Disruptive Pupil. I was out of school early for once and we hastened back home to meet the new tumble dryer.
But it hadn't arrived so instead Bune did, which was nice.
boy sitting on tumble clothes dryer lindo300 zanussiBune is a strange old bloke who went to school with Bud in 1984 and visits every now and then to laugh at us. He admired the new book I'm writing called "Great Green Guy and the Disaster Devil" which is a tale of derring-do in the toiletries aisle of a well-known German supermarket.
He got the tour of the house and promised to visit again next time he was negotiating council supply contracts for a local nursing home, as you do. But he went after only 40 minutes to catch the train back to London and I got to eat biscuits and wait for the dryer.
We'd sunk as low as sorting through the old board games (suitable ages 4-8) when the delivery men finally turned up and they spent less than 5 minutes on the premises including the demo but Jof had a load of laundry all ready for it, maybe I'll put a cat in there too.

Wednesday, 12 November 2014

But Where do all the Calculators go?

slim very young wet blonde girl squirts plays with dogYet another day when lumps of rain sped across the world and anyone who went outside came back with manic hair.
On Wednesdays we get a bonus Ben so walked home talking about Pokémon. He knows all there is to know and has many cards and origami Pokéballs and all the patter but I am banned from all Pokérelated things because the program is rubbish and I am so hypnotized by its oriental awfulness I forget to eat my breakfast.
milton park southsea in the rainSo we did some Lego and went to the park because drizzle does not dismay us. The JBs didn't make it so we played swinging basket football attack for 45 minutes and left just as the really angry black cloud of the troposphere family descended upon us. Amazingly, we'd eaten all the chocolate by then. Traditionally, we take nibbles to the park and it must be in packets of 4 identical items, otherwise one, all, or more of us will throw a wobbly, protesting that everyone else has got a better deal. As the JBs didn't show, that left twice as much for us, and while unsupervised, we predictably chose to hoover the lot.
That left sufficient energy for hours of Lego attacks at home where we screamed and laughed and threw Lego Police boats at each other loudly enough to get told off by Bud which hardly ever happens, like hurricanes.
I don't particularly care about landing on a comet. But I might have a 2-week holiday on Mars when I retire.

Tuesday, 11 November 2014

Max Attax!

image culled from net reposted as something elseThis is an image of me holding a giant Nuclear-powered Lego Lasergun with Frangible Dichotomizers and 4-way Vertebra Delignifiers, taken a year ago.
Ben helped me build it and it was awesome. But some nice chap out there in Cyberspace has made me into a Match Attax! card - with quite good stats. Ben was impressed.
School was great today until the last minute when I was just getting my going-home bag and Eddie and Stanley totally bundled me into the cupboard and sat on my head. I had to have a Headbanger referral. Due to the oppressive weather I actually got home in the dark.
This was not a great start because at gymnastics I had to do handstands, headstands and dive-rolls so I spent a lot of time upside down or landing on my already concussed cranium.
But on the plus side I had 2 suppers (I love olive bread now) and finished Red Dwarf series 4.

Monday, 10 November 2014

Scouting for Shells

engrish product fail stupid t shirtYesterday Jof and I were just about to go to the park when it started to rain so I chose next year's holiday destination instead. I have chosen Crete. In fact Bud has already called me a total Cretan, which is nice.
pci deals albert road southseaAt school we did a 'Cold Write' where the teacher gives us a little story framework and we hang interesting things off it from our imagination to make a story. Today I used Groundhog Day as inspiration and had my 10 year-old boy refusing to buy superglue in the wood store to mend his mother's sofa leg, and instead breaking a pencil in half and stealing a car and driving it round a dump in a repetitive alternate dimension.
In the end (for morals must out) he decided to buy the wood glue anyway and fix the sofa so returned from his parallel universe via a wardrobe that glowed orange, as you do, minus an entire Thursday due to event-horizon effects.
But then I was back to reality and we visited a second-hand computer shop on Albert Road who agreed to buy Grandad's old laptop which he never used. Holding folding, we sped home practising the script for the great Scout Demo this evening. The Scoutmaster took the scouts away and we set up in the church canteen and once the audience was assembled we went through our little routine.
medals swords and artillery brass shell casings display for cub scouts
The Scoutmaster introduced him as Brad and I wore the Colonel's uniform and we took turns in reading from our script and they loved the swords and we got a series of ooohs and aaaahs getting bigger and bigger as we took larger and larger artillery shells out of the magic cabin trunk. After we'd done our spiel, there was a melee, free-for-all and general hubbub as the boys fought over the 4 1/2 inch shell casing and the girls went for the swords. The favourite was the Japanese Katana but the Iron Cross (second class) got plenty of attention. Then I got 2 swimming badges, why not.

Sunday, 9 November 2014

Praying to someone else's god

milton st james parish portsmouth cub scout groupI absolutely insisted on going to church today for the Remembrance Sunday service with my scout friends. This is why the day started 3 hours early, and after a couple of late nights too. The service went on a bit longer than usual because we had to read out the names of the 214 people killed in the war from our parish. Afterwards I got a biscuit.
parish of milton st james portsmouth remembrance sunday serviceWell, that was pretty well it for the day. Jof did the shopping so I didn't have to, so I started watching Die Hard 3 (the one in New York) and when Jof made us lunch we all watched the rest. Of course, it's Yippee Ki-Yay Feather-Plucker left right and centre all the way through, kinda awkward sitting there with Jof in the room, words like that are not for mummies. But I correctly guessed that the madman on the phone was a relative of Hans Gruber from the first one.
While he ran in the rain I played Jof at "Coppit" which is quite like Ludo and by the time we'd watched our evening episode of Red Dwarf, I was yawning.