31 July 2007

Doctoring the Toilet

Spotted this notice in the toilet at my doctor's surgery the other day. How to murder the language! Well it amused me!

29 July 2007

Zen Mischievous Moments #131

Giraffe's necks and Golden Gate Bridge
[It seems] an appropriate moment to introduce readers to the unusual unit converter discovered ... at http://www.weirdconverter.com/. This enables you to convert from one unusual unit to another. Sadly, in the "weight" section "male polar bear" is listed, but there is no baby elephant, only a fully grown one. Even so, you may be interested to know that one African elephant equals 12.24790343434 polar bears. There is also a "length/height" section which reveals, for instance, that one Golden Gate Bridge equals 720 giraffe's necks.

[New Scientist; 28/07/2007]

26 July 2007

Recipe: Pasta with Antipasto

Today's evening meal made up as I went along from a vague idea!

For 2 hungry persons or 4 with a small appetite you will need:
  • enough Pasta (any variety, preferably fresh)
  • 2x 200gm tubs of Antipasto and/or Roast Peppers in marinade (or equivalent; you can even do your own!)
  • 1 medium onion, preferably red, thickly sliced
  • enough garlic, thickly sliced
  • 4 tomatoes, quartered
  • 6 medium button mushrooms, thickly sliced
  • 10-12 black olives
  • a handful of pine nuts
  • some basil leaves
  • olive oil
  • Parmesan cheese
  1. Put the pasta on to cook. When cooked, drain and keep warm.
  2. When the pasta is almost done, fry the onion and garlic in olive oil until translucent and just starting to caramelise.
  3. Add the tomatoes, stir for a minute or so then add the mushrooms and olives.
  4. Cook for 2-3 minutes, and add the tubs of antipasto with their marinade/oil . Cook for a further 2-3 minutes until everything is hot through.
  5. Add the basil leaves and pine nuts. Stir.
  6. Add the pasta and mix all together for a minute or two ensuring the pasta is well covered in the flavourful oil and vegetables.
  7. Serve with the Parmesan cheese and a robust red wine.

Yes, it was rib-sticking and yummy!

18 July 2007

Excessive DUST?!

Excessive DUST?!, originally uploaded by j-sin.

Absolutely brilliant -- so much so it is stretching my credulity neurons.

As @j-sin syas: I've lived in the UK long enough to know that this is the only country where "leaves on the track" stop our trains but this seemed a new level of sillyness. Was the dust "high in fat or low in fat" I wonder?

11 July 2007


I've just come back from a couple of days in Somerset attending the funeral of one of my closest friends. Although old enough to be my father, Victor was 82 when he died a couple of weeks ago, we had been friends for almost 35 years since we met when we were both post-grad students: he doing an MA in Art History, me just starting on my doctorate in Chemical Spectroscopy. In the year we spent together at university we became close friends; so close that when Victor's wife died a couple of years back I was asked to be the celebrant at her funeral, and this week I gave the funeral oration for Victor - which was well received.

How nice then to return to find the following quote (attributed to Muhammad Ali) in my email:

Friendship is the hardest thing in the world to explain. It's not something you learn in school. But if you haven't learned the meaning of friendship, you really haven't learned anything.

I'll perhaps write more about Victor later; as I said in my eulogy, he was a great man.

02 July 2007


OK, the current meme wins; I'll play the game!
I never thought about being in The Simpsons, but here I am ...

01 July 2007


I have never yet blogged about terrorism. And I am not going to start now. To do so would be to give the perpetrators one of the things they desire: attention. The best solution is to get on with life and leave the law to deal with criminals.