December 21, 2005

Altogether Now..

(To be sung to the tune of 'One Man Went To Mow)

5 more sleeps to go
5 more sleeps to Santa
5 more sleep till the big fat bloke comes down your chimney and leaves you presents and drinks your beer
5 more sleeps till Santa.

Feeling festive yet? :)

December 15, 2005

We're All Going On A Llama Hunt.

As a fully paid up flickr addict I was quite excited when one of my contacts – Monster , aka Steve, organised a flickr meet. For the unaffiliated out there flickr is a website that gives anyone, amateur, professional or wannabee a chance to show the world what they can see through the lense of a camera, or at least that’s the simple explanation. I’m not going into my own thoughts on flickr because part of the genius of it is that it is something different to everyone who uses it. You need to discover it for yourself.

Anyway last Sunday I headed down to Portsmouth to meet up with a few cyber friends from flickr. It was a strange meeting. Firstly there were only three of us! I have no doubt whatsoever that Steve did everything possible to badger others into coming, no doubt there was lots of promises made to be there but at the end of the day only three of us turned up. But that was ok, because we had a really nice day.

It was doubly strange (in a nice way) because I had known Steve pretty much all my life but not met the other contact that came, and yet I’d had the chance, via flickr to get to know her and see the world through her eyes, so it felt like I already knew her. The fact that I was meeting up with Steve was weird in itself, we grew up on neighbouring streets, we went to the same schools, we almost got it together as teenagers but then drifted apart and didn’t see each other for over 20 years. Then with the advent of friends reunited we made contact again. We met up for the obligatory school reunion then kept in touch via a few e-mails, but on a chance trip to the little village that is now my home, en route to drop his dogs of to kennels, I showed him flickr and literally created a Monster! He takes great photos, and is hoping to make a career out of it now, and I wish him all the luck in that. (and if you read this Steve – don’t get big headed, I still have that photo!) Anyway I digress. The other flickrite that came to the meet was a lady who goes by the screen name of Joker the Lurcher . Now (and this will only make sense if you take a look at flickr) I’d had a quick nose at her photos whilst looking at Steve’s but I’d never really had much contact with Angharad, but from the moment we all met up it was like meeting up with old friends. We warmed up with a couple of drinks in a pub in Old Portsmouth and talked and talked! There were no awkward silences, no struggles to find a common topic, if all else failed there were two real and one surrogate dog owners round the table, that conversation alone could go on forever! And, may I add, Joker has the most amazing eyes, he’s a cool dog.

Then we wandered over to Portsmouth Cathedral, camera’s at the ready and wandered round snapping away in there for a while, and even though the same things caught our eyes we still managed to come out of there with three different views. A Nice start to the afternoon, then…..

Steve and I went to look for Llamas! My latest obsession is the flickr monthly scavenger hunt. Twenty photos’s to get by the end of the month, and December’s challenge is (drum roll please)…

1. A waitress/waiter dressed all in black.
2. The number 12.
3. A set of twins.
4. Someone with no hair.
5. A bicycle in the snow or rain.
6. Someone on crutches.
7. A dog on a leash.
8. A Hot drink.
9. Green eyes.
10. Red shoes.
11. An airplane, not in the air.
12. A Llama.
13. A U.S. veteran, uniform optional (or a Veteran from your own country)
14. A lighted Menorah.
15. A strange hat.
16. A burning fire.
17. A coin, not from the U.S.
18. A holiday desert.
19. A gift.
20. Brown eggs.

So I checked on their website and there was a park that was near the area that both Steve and I grew up in that allegedly had Llamas! So, eventually getting back to the whole point of this tome! We went on a Llama hunt (photographically speaking of course).

We got there, and worked out that neither of us had visited this area in well over a decade so we weren’t sure exactly where the Llamas might be, it was just an open bit of park when we were kids, a nice lake, an arch thing in the middle, some good trees to climb, but no zoo. But the website said they had one, so in we went. We wandered down to the lake, and round a bit of it but neither of us could be bothered to walk all the way round – it’s big, and besides we were looking for the Llamas. Then we wandered back up to the arch thing, took a few pics then spotted a path that we hadn’t seen before – the zoo maybe? No, it was a Coach House. Interesting, a good place to play with a camera, but no Llamas!

As we walked back to the car I started to doubt my sanity, I knew I had seen a zoo on their list of attractions, I KNEW it had Llamas – how hard can it be to find a Llama in the only bit of green land midst the biggest council estate in the South of England? Then, just as we were about to cross the road back to the car park, we saw a map. And there it was – the ornamental gardens, complete with Llamas, on the other side of the road, in the bit that was never open to the public when we were kids! I have no doubt that, by then, Steve would have told me where to shove paying £4.60 to go into the zoo and take Llama pictures but he needed the little boys room and the only one for 10 miles was the other side of the ticket office!

So I had a great day, met an old friend and made a new one, proved my sanity and got a picture of a Llama. All in all really a good Sunday.

December 07, 2005

Christmas Quackers!

Tis the season to be jolly and all that, and today we, that is my business partner and I, decided, for the second time, that if we can't beat the Tuesday Market in our little village then we'll join 'em! Alison did the first week, after I pulled the "I've got a cold' card so today, despite the remnants of a really annoying cough I stood outside in the freezing cold, and occasional shower, flogging our wares.

I got to pitch up next to Gary, or "the Duck man" as he is more commonly known in Odiham. It's amazing just how many people want wooden Ducks! We are in the wrong business! Even I succumbed eventually and came back with a little wooden duckling of my very own :) And you know what? I quite enjoyed it! There was a real sense of community amongst the market traders. It's only a small market, no more than 6 stalls at the moment, and to be honest it's always been a source of friction amongst the retailers in the village. Parking is hard enough as it is, but when the Tuesday Market takes 10 parking spaces out for 4 hours it's impossible! So, just like everyone else, we moaned! "Our shop is always quiet on a Tuesday" we said. "It's our worse day of the week" we whined! Then Alison suggested we give it a go ourselves, set up our well-worn Gazebo, take a few chocs out, some toys, and a Christmas card or two and see what happens. So we did!

Although the market itself will never pay for our retirement the strange thing is as soon as one of us stood outside freezing to death for the morning the shop got busier! Go figure! And we didn't do too badly on the stall so all in all it's worth it. We'll stick it out until Christmas then maybe do it once a month in the New Year.

So there I was, full of the Christmas spirit, albeit frozen to the very core when on a trip out later in the evening I stumbled across this! I think Christmas has arrived in South Warnborough! I think I saw a collection box at the gate, although it was hard to see past the glare. So I hope they are doing this for charity! I'll take a trip back under the safety of daylight to see. Happy Christmas!

December 02, 2005

The Art of Asking Questions

I keep six honest serving-men
(They tought me all I knew);
Their names are What and Why and When
And How and When and Who.
I send them over land and sea,
I send them easy and west;
But after they have worked for me,
I give them all a rest.

I let them rest from nine till five,
For I am busy then,
As well as breakfast, lunch and tea,
For they are hungry men.
But different folk have different views;
I know a person small-
She keeps ten million serving-men,
Who get no rest at all!

She sends 'em abroad on her own affairs,
From the second she opens her eyes-
One million Hows, two million Wheres,
And seven million Whys!

From The Elephants Child by Rudyard Kipling.

November 22, 2005

Utterly Pointless Lists!

We all make lists don't we? Things to do, shopping, things to buy and so on and so on. But be honest how many pointless lists do we all make? There seems to be a huge increase on British TV of the 'Top 100 TV Adverts' or 'The Top 100 All time Great Love Songs, Movie Moments, the number of top 100's is a whole endless list in itself. So in this evening's moment of boredom I decided to start composing my own utterly pointless lists, it'll fill up a space in the sidebar if nothing else! I really can't be bothered to list 100 of anything so I think I'll stick to top 10's. So in the true spirit of the season here's my first (of no doubt many) Top 10's.

My Top 10 Worse Possible Xmas Presents

1. Anything bought 'In 10 easy instalments' from a newspaper or newspaper colour supplement. (For that matter, anything bought from a newspaper or newspaper Sunday Supplement)

2. Collectables. (With the possible exception of Star Wars or Bad Taste Bears)

3. Tea Towel

4. Fake designer labels, (smell-a-like perfumes, fake designer watches etc)

5. A Celine Dion CD

6. An England Rugby shirt

7. A Self Help Book/CD/DVD

8. Anything that smells of Magnolia, Rose, Sandalwood or Lily Of The Valley

9. A Calendar with picture of cute fluffy kittens/puppies/ponies etc etc.

10. Real Fur

November 12, 2005


Originally uploaded by Cathy G.
Decades of easy peace may go their way and tide, and time may drift us far apart but you who have shared our savage yesterday will hold the highest places in our heart

And whilst I'm on the whole war thing, I found this. I know it's a member of my family but I found it in a box of old photo's and there's no one left alive who might know who it was. I thought it was a good pic though, and worth sharing.

November 09, 2005

Jigsaw Puzzle

Jigsaw Puzzle
Originally uploaded by Cathy G.
So... following the whole coffee and keyboard incident one of my speakers decided to give up as well, although in true style the day the nice man came out to fix it the speaker sprang back to life. He fitted a new one anyway, just in case. So this is what a Mac looks like on the inside - scary, and very dusty!

November 03, 2005

Cat Dictionary

Did someone say Mouse?
Originally uploaded by Cathy G.
The inability to get more than twenty hours sleep in a day

Staying with the same human for more than six weeks

A condition only observed in other creatures

Canned food with wings but no can

A tiny vicious dragon

A large hairy overgrown flea

That annoying time inbetween naps

Something which must be taken at 30-minute intervals

A feeling one can only truly have for oneself

A possible portal to utopia which must be explored and guarded

An activity carried out by mankind to maintain catkind in comfort

No known definition.

October 31, 2005

Coffee and Keyboards don't mix!





or...when typed with a new keyboard...

The Tale of The Coffee and The Keyboard!

So there I was Sunday morning, half asleep, I turned on my trusty Mac then proceeded to spill the nice hot cup of coffee that I had just made all over my keyboard!

The result was the hardware equivalent of a stroke, paralysed down the right hand side with half the keys not working including the space bar and any of the numbers.

Fortunately it's still under warranty and the nice people from Apple have just sent me a shiny new one!

October 28, 2005

Thought For The Day.

We'll have some friends round for dinner we said. Have maybe two; three bottles of wine (between 5 of us) have grown up conversation, after dinner coffees and a nice sensible evening.

So... 10 bottles of wine, and 4 extra guests later there we were dancing (?) around the living room to Judas Priest (classy huh?) and upsetting the neighbours (whom we apologised to profusely today). I finally passed out at about 3.30am and my housemates finally threw the towel in at around 5am - not bad for a bunch of thirty and forty somethings huh? And on a School night as well! For some reason I felt the need to create this little poster halfway through the evening, I have no idea why, other than I was fairly focused on drinking at the time, but I thought I'd share it with you.

It was not big or clever, but I have to confess it was fun! Tomorrow I shall try to resume grown up behaviour. Slippers, Cocoa, a good book and an early night for me tonight I think.

October 24, 2005

Rainy Days and Mondays....

Rainy Days and Mondays....
Originally uploaded by Cathy G.
Talkin' to myself and feelin' old
Sometimes I'd like to quit
Nothing ever seems to fit
Hangin' around
Nothing to do but frown
Rainy Days and Mondays always get me down.

What I've got they used to call the blues
Nothin' is really wrong
Feelin' like I don't belong
Walkin' around
Some kind of lonely clown
Rainy Days and Mondays always get me down.

October 18, 2005

October 16, 2005

Get The Message?

I was thinking about one of my many career changes a while ago and enrolled in a home study course to become a Private Investigator. As part of the course I was invited to join a web group for PI's. Although I haven't finished the course (yet!) I still belong to the web group. The posting's can be quite interesting sometimes. As some of the information could be quite sensitive I suppose the moderator of the group insists that anyone who posts puts a full signature at the end of each posting, company name, address, telephone number etc. One of the members missed some of the information off and was contacted by the moderator and told off a little - this was his response, which made me smile! (I have removed his contact details from this blog entry).

Dear Group,

I have been asked by the moderator to redo this request for help, as I did not put in my full address!!

I only put full name, telephone number, E Mail address, mipi membership, and Company name. I forgot to put that we are on the top of the hill just near the pub by the house with the little old lady who has got a wonky eye and the barking Dog. My van is parked at the front and the back left tyre is a little flat. If you ever have the need to find me let me know you are coming and I will fire a few flares to guide you in or I will stand by the gate waving the union jack.

If you need to write and cant find the time to call in, then please write to-

(Name and address removed)

Born 31st October 1956 (Birthday in a few weeks Moderator please take note) born in Manchester at Crumpsell Hospital (think it was raining) but mam done very well. Dad was on the beer at the time and missed it, bless him.

Telephone ***************
Fax ****************
E.Mail ********************

Please let me know if this is enough!!!! xx

October 14, 2005

My Cat's Got 5 Paws!

Mutant Cat
Originally uploaded by Cathy G.
Hey it's Mutant Ninja Cat :)

October 13, 2005

let 'em go

let's let the bombs go
I'm tired of waiting

I've put away my toys
folded the road maps
canceled my subscription to Time
kissed Disneyland goodbye

I've taken the flea collars off my cats
unplugged the tv
I no longer dream of pink flamingoes
I no longer check the market index

let's let 'em go
let's let 'em blow

I'm tired of waiting

I don't like this kind of blackmail
I don't like governments playing cutesy with my life:
either crap or get off the pot
I'm tired of waiting
I'm tired of dangling
I'm tired of the fix

let the bombs blow

you cheap sniveling cowardly nations
you mindless giants

do it
do it
do it!

and escape to your planets and space stations
then you can fuck it
up there too.

From You Get So Alone At Times That It Just Makes Sense - Charles Bukowski

My Band!

Your Band Name is:

The Sacred Falafel

Ok, well that's the name sorted now all I need is some musical ability! Ho hum, can't have everything I suppose :)

What Sort of Blogger Are You?

You Are a Life Blogger!

Your blog is the story of your life - a living diary.
If it happens, you blog it. And make it as entertaining as possible.

Sick Sick Sick!!!!

Yet another horrific story of animal cruelty published in a National UK newspaper this week! Sorry if the picture offends but I just cannot get my head round the fact that there are people out there, no matter what their substance abuse of choice is, who could think of doing anything like this, let alone actually carry it out!

'Horrified RSPCA chiefs were last night trying to track down the thugs who hanged this Dalmatian pup from a tree.

The six-month-old dog was found dangling from a blue nylon rope tied 15ft up a tree. It is a horrific picture that will cause distress to many readers. But the picture was printed at the request of the RSPCA to help track down the sadists responsible'.

The newspaper is also offering a £5000 reward for information (Call 020 7782 4030)

'The appalling spectacle of the lifeless puppy confronted a teenager at Cudworth Welfare Park in Barnsley, South Yorkshire, last Thursday. The rope had been tied to upper branches of a silver birch and a noose put around the dogs neck. A Dalmatian puppy costs at least £300 but this one was not wearing a collar and had not been reported missing.

RSPCA Inspector Terry Speight said "In 20 years I have seen some sights - but nothing as bad as this. Whoever did it had to shin up the tree, then place the noose around the dog before leaving it to swing to its death. There were two more nooses on the ground close to a couple of empty cider bottles and some silver foil beside a bonfire. This was a premeditated act by psychopaths who may have been on drugs. We need to find them".

What sort of people is this world creating? How long before whoever did this moves on to children, or old people, and how long before they kill a person?

October 12, 2005

A Statistic, A Reminder!

While I'm on a brief anti-smoking campaign, found in The Book Of Bunny Suicides by Andy Riley a book for 'little fluffy rabbits who just don't want to live anymore'

October 09, 2005

The True 'Cost' Of Smoking

Now please don't take this the wrong way. This is not an attack on smokers or smoking, this is not an attempt to try to guilt anyone into giving up, I'm a smoker so it would be pretty hypocritical to start lecturing anyone about it. However I'm always half heartedly promising myself I'll give up - tomorrow, or before my next birthday, or after I've lost some weight, got fit, won the lottery etc etc and I saw an article in 'The Sun' on Saturday that has probably made me think just how stupid smoking is more than any of the health warnings ever have. So I thought I'd share it.


The average British smoker spends a breathtaking NINETY THOUSAND pounds on cigarettes in a lifetime, according to research released yesterday.

The full figure - £91,832.43 - works out at 373,302 cigarettes smoked or 18.665 packs.

In a year each smoker gets through 6,060 cigs at an average cost of £1,493.22

Around 80 per cent of the money will go to the Government in tax - £73,466 in an average lifetime.

The study by financial providers Clerical Medical also found that the average smoker puffs through 15.24 fags a day, costing £106.68 a week.

Ian Willmore, a spokesman for Action on Smoking and Health (ASH) said, "This survey shows just how wasteful and addictive smoking is. Not only could it kill you but it costs you enormous amounts of money to feed the habit."

Collectively, UK smokers are estimated to get through 72 MILLION cigs a year and send £17BILLION up in smoke.

Laid out in a line, all those cigarettes would stretch for more than four million miles, and circumnavigate the earth 154 times.

Clerical Medical Boss John Hiew said, "We all know about the health problems associated with smoking but we wanted to find the wealth implications associated with the habit. It's a staggering amount of money British smokers spend. If people put the money they spend on cigarettes into a savings plan they would probably live longer and could have an extra income of thousands of pounds a year."

The research also revealed that 83 per cent of the 3,000 smokers questioned in their survey had tried giving up at least three times.

A third admitted that they lasted only a couple of days, another third crumbled after two months, while 15 per cent managed a year.

The study also revealed that the biggest smokers lived in Northern Ireland, followed by Londoners and then those in the North West.

For the study a lifetime's smoking was based upon someone starting at 17 and continuing to 78 - if they live that long, of course.

So I did the math - I've been smoking for 15 years now, and although prices have gone up since I started £5 a packet is probably a pretty good average to work on, 1 pack of 20 a day, with the odd day when I've bought 2, 7 days a week, that adds up to £45 per week (if you allow for a couple of two pack days) not £106.68 as they claim in the survey, at an average of 15.24 fags a day that's less than a pack a day so to get to those costs you'd have to be paying £11.85 per pack! However it is still £45 per week, £2,340 per year, which means that I've spent £35,100 on cigs so far in my lifetime! Ouch! If I carry on smoking, and manage to live to 70 then my total (not allowing for any further price increase on cigs) will be £102,960 spent on cigarettes!

So it's 4.20 on Sunday afternoon, and I still haven't had one today. I have to be honest and say that a king sized hangover was the main motivation for not smoking this morning but as the day has worn on (and the hangover worn off) I thought I'd see how long I can go before I smoke. I have one solitary cigarette left from the brand new pack I took over the pub with me last night - can I last the day without smoking it?

I'm not going to claim that I'm giving up, or that I've given up (but you never know!) however those figures make you realise just how much money you waste on killing yourself!

October 08, 2005

Cat Attack!

If you like cat's you'll love this - check out My Cat Hates You Dot Com

That Friday Feeling!

It's Friday, we're hungover, we can't be asked to work so we decided to be 'Laydees' who lunch today. 1 hot chicken and bacon ciabatta, 1 warm chicken and bacon salad, 2 glasses of white wine and two vodka's and diet coke later and the world seemed a much nicer place and a far more constructive afternoon was had by all!

October 06, 2005

Chocolate Wars!

Oh yes!
Originally uploaded by Garrettc.
Who would have thought that a little picture of a Kit Kat could cause such a stir - looks yummy though doesn't it?

Check out the original entry on flickr to see what all the fuss is about.

October 05, 2005

Better Than Sex?

White, Milk or Dark?
Originally uploaded by Cathy G.
The debate goes on :)

September 30, 2005

Finding My Voice?

make known


Cornish Sunset
Originally uploaded by Cathy G.

September 27, 2005

A Masterpiece?

My first painting! If you want to have a go at creating your own click here great for wasting office time :)

September 20, 2005

Joke of The Day!

A woman and a man are involved in a car accident; it's a bad one. Both of their cars are totally demolished but amazingly neither of them is hurt. God works in mysterious ways!

After they crawl out of their cars, the woman says: "So you're a man, that's interesting - I'm a woman! Wow, just look at our cars! There's nothing left, but we're unhurt. This must be a sign from God that we should meet and be friends and live together in peace for the rest of our days".

Flattered, the man replies, "Oh yes, I agree with you completely, this must be a sign from God!"

The woman continues, "And look at this, here's another miracle. My car is completely demolished but this bottle of wine didn't break. Surely God wants us to drink this wine, celebrate our good fortune and see where the evening leads."

Then she hands the bottle to the man. The man nods his head in agreement, opens it and drinks half the bottle and then hands it back to the woman. The woman takes the bottle and immediately puts the cap back on, and hands it back to the man.

The man asks, "Aren't you having any?"
The woman replies, "No. I think I'll just wait for the police....

September 10, 2005

Sick People!

This week I read a story in one of the papers that sickened me, not that that's anything unusual with all the violence and suffering that is going on around the world but the story of Holly Thacker - aged 34 really made me wonder what is wrong with people today.

Holly Thacker. a mother of two girls decided that as their pet cat had 'gone a bit weird' and had scratched her she was going to get rid of it by boiling it to death on a boil wash in her washing machine!!!

The vet who was called to examine the body after her horrified ex husband (mmm - wonder why he left her?) was shown it in the bin she had dumped it in said " the terror the cat suffered while drowning was revealed by broken claws on all four paws. It's skin was red - showing how hot the water was. The disorientation of a rotating drum and the filling with boiling water would have been a terrifying process"

Holly Thacker has been found guilty of animal cruelty by the court nr Hellesdon, Norfolk - her home town - and has been told she could face jail. Sentencing has been adjourned.

Well lets hope she spends a little time as a guest of HMP and hopefully while she's there she'll get to share a cell with a nice Psychotic animal lover who may be better located and better equipped to explain to her just how much that poor little cat suffered just because she didn't want it anymore.

Holly Thacker may you burn in hell!


Well she was jailed, albeit not for very long, but jailed non the less. The RSPCA blasted the lenient sentence thier spokesman said "This is the most horrific deliberate act of cruelty I have ever had to deal with" and the reality of it is that she will probably only serve half of that. However I for one am glad to see she is serving some time for this, even if it does end up only being three weeks. I figure that's still got to be three weeks of shit for her, and I'm still hanging onto the hope of a mentally unstable, animal rights activist for a cell mate!

September 07, 2005

Words Of Wisdom

"I may not have gone where I intended to go, but I think I have ended up where I needed to be."

Douglas Adams

A Riddle?

Shown above are 4 men buried up to their necks in the ground. They can not move so can only look forward. Between A and B is a brick wall which can not be seen through. They know that between them are 4 hats, 2 x black and 2 x white, but they do not know which colour they are wearing. In order to avoid being shot one of them must call out to the executioner the colour of their hat. If they get it wrong, everyone will be shot. They are not allowed to talk to each other and have 10 minutes to fathom it out.

After 1 minute:

Q Which one of them calls out ?

Q. Why is he 100% certain of the colour of his hat ?

This is not a trick question. There are no outside influences nor other ways of communicating. They cannot move and are buried in a straight line. So A & B can only see their respective sides of the brick wall, C can see B and D can see B & C.


Went to the dreaded Dentist today for my 6 monthly checkup - No fillings - hoorah!

September 05, 2005

Last Night's Storm


listening to Wagner
as outside in the dark the wind blows a cold rain the
trees wave and shake lights go
off and on the walls creak and the cats run under the

Wagner battles the agonies, he’s emotional but
solid, he’s the supreme fighter, a giant in a world of
pygmies, he takes it straight on through, he breaks
astonishing FORCE of sound as

everything here shakes
in fierce gamble

yes, Wagner and the storm intermix with the wine as
nights like this run up my wrists and up into my head and
back down into the

some men never
and some men never

but we’re all alive

By Charles Bukowski

September 04, 2005

A Spy Amongst Them!

Sunday's Smile :)

Meet Smodge!

I'd like to introduce Smodge, who will no doubt feature in many blog posts. He's entertaining in a slightly unhinged sort of way. I am the 'cat' lady and I will no doubt become the cliche as I get older. Kittens not kids - that's my theory. Cat's are low maintenance, self cleaning and nobody calls Social Services when you go away for the night and leave them with a big bowl of Go-Cat and fresh water but no babysitter!

August 25, 2005

A Must for Dog Owners Everywhere!

Pet Pals Magazine
Originally uploaded by Jedinate.
I found this on flickr - made by Jedinate.

Made me smile! :)

Mini Me?