Monthly Archives: May 2013

Coffee Wars

WP_20130526_001My old coffee machine gave up the ghost.  Instead of delivering the coffee through the basket effort (good) it was splurping round the top, such that the coffee was like dishwater with amputated flies legs floating in it (bad). So we got a new one on Friday.

Friday was a draw. After its initial capture late morning, it put up a very determined fight, refusing to work at all.  But after I had primed it, adjusted the water filter and blown up its nose, it started producing some very passable coffee.  Then, after dinner, it produced just one cup of coffee before falsely declaring that its dregs drawer was full, and refusing all attempts at a reset. Continue reading

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Filed under News from at home

Leading question

guitarI have mentioned before that I am planning to play in short Gerry Rafferty gig next month.  I thought I might try to play a bit of lead guitar.  I more usually play a classical guitar, but as it happens I have a Stratocaster, and thought, “It cannot be too hard, can it?”

And so I got my friend Michael round to show me.  He illuminated the mysteries of how to get decent overdrive, which is the effect one wants for this sort of thing. So that was all good. But then the actual playing thing.  Hmm. Michael was very encouraging but the short answer to my question turns out to be “Yes, it can”. Continue reading

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Filed under Culture, News from at home

Calais Written in My Heart

calaisThere is a car here in Australia called a Holden Calais.  Someone presumably thought, “French seaside town – must be lovely!”

One can only assume that they have never actually been to Calais.

For many years, it was an English possession; Continue reading

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Filed under Culture, History


sacred cowA number of sacred cows have been rounded up in recent years.

Climate change is an obvious example. It used to be the case that the crowd thought one a bit nutty to be sceptical about the warmist agenda, but it now mainstream for intelligent people, and even a few governments, to doubt that we all heading helter-skelter for a fiery hell because of the increased amount of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere.  And course now we have passed the 400 ppm threshold without ill effect, the idea of beggaring ourselves for no good reason is more or less dead on its feet.  More interesting is that the new evidence is that there is more vegetation in the world these days, and in particular the rainforests are growing, because of course carbon dioxide is very good for plants.

Then human genetics.  Not many years ago at all it was the universally accepted view that all people in the world had a identical genetic make-up. A result of the mapping of the human genome and the analysis of Neanderthal remains has meant that it is now fully accepted in scientific circles that Caucasians interbred with Neanderthals and Africans did not – hence a 4% genetic difference in origin.  Continue reading

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Filed under Climate, Politics