Saturday, 25 December 2010

My Christmas speech.

This has been a year of ups and downs for lots of people, some of us have lost loved ones, some have found new love. Some have lost jobs, some have found new ones, some have not, life is all about change, being human is all about adapting to that change, it can be much easier with good people around to help. Some of us do not have that option, there are people who have not got friends around to help and encourage them, I personally have a great circle of friends who have helped me through those times when I needed them. I hope I in turn have managed to help others as well. This has been the best year for me for some time in some ways, not so good in others, passing on help and the good feelings to others makes me feel good, there is nothing wrong in taking pride in helping others. This is something we should all do, at least one unselfish act every day.

We should all take a step back and look around us, far too many people have a selfish attitude to life these days, because they end up wrapped in their own selfishness they can miss how wonderful the world around is.
I am taking pleasure at this moment in the birds on the bird feeder outside my window, there is a massive woodpecker hanging from the peanut dispenser, simple things can give as much pleasure as the X-box or new mobile phone.

Are we teaching our children the simple pleasures in life? The pressure on kids and adults growing up to have the newest, biggest and best item on the market is now an endemic problem, IMHO anyway, we are constantly bombarded with the feeling that we 'have' to have the next 52" tv, or the new I-phone4.
I did not like being forced to upgrade to a frankly ridiculous level, it is this being pushed into having something that I don't really need that annoys me. How much of the capabilities of your phone do you use or even need?

As the market forces push us more and more into buying the latest and greatest new thing, are we becoming more insular?
There are people now who are getting to the point of only interacting with the outside world through their computer, I see this as becoming the norm in the next 20 years. Perhaps we should take a good look at our life's and see where we are headed?

The system of politics in this country will soon change, it has to, more and more people seem to be waking up to the fact that most of the current politicians are only in it as a job, politics is no longer seen as a vocation. There is so much prevarication and arse covering that nothing really gets done, the sooner we get in some MP's that will have the guts to say "Oops the economy is screwed, we had better sit down and do something sensible about it" the better, but it wont happen, mainly because to correct all the problems will upset too many people, most of which are in big corporates and will stand to end up paying the correct amount of tax instead of the paltry amount they pay now.
Sorting out the economy will hurt, but this papering over the cracks instead of knuckling down and getting it right is not the way to do it. Can someone also explain why we need nuclear weapons these days? Who exactly do we need to deter? More money that we cant afford to spend.
If you can, in the new year, please get involved in politics, the incumbents in the present government rely on the fact that most people cant be bothered, to keep themselves and their mates in jobs. The same parties and people are voted in time after time, what differences can you see between the main parties these days? The current coalition has already proved itself to be a sham, lies, deceit and backstabbing are worse than ever, is it not time to kick them all out and start again?
I think so.

Thank you for reading this rambling diatribe of a Christmas speech, if nothing else I hope it has made you think a bit, at least be grateful I did not sling in a few jokes.

Have a great Christmas and a very happy new year.

Saturday, 6 November 2010


Its been awhile since I last went, I used to enjoy it, so with a fair sized lake 5 mins away in the camper, reports of good sized Rudd, Tench and Carp to over 20lbs, off I went.
Bloody hell it was windy!! The lake is at the bottom of a valley near me, the wind is funneled down and gets quite brisk just where I wanted to fish, still I'm here now so lets get set up.Not knowing what to expect, I start out trying to freeline bread, which has been recommended as the favourite bait, under some bushes about 10 yards away, I'm using 8lb line with a 4lb hook to nylon and size 12 barbless hook, I am flicking the bread out 10 feet to the left of the bushes and letting the surface drift caused by the wind; take it underneath the edge of the bushes, I am also throwing pieces of bread into the bushes, this way it drops down through the leaves and looks more natural.

After 2 hours nothing, not a touch, I've tried from under my feet on the bank right across as far as I can cast. Time to switch tactics, I attach a small 1/2oz free running ledger to the line and switch to sweetcorn. Bingo, inside 5 minutes I have a strong run which unfortunately drops before I can strike. Never mind, I start rebaiting the hook when the bite indicator on the other rod shoots into the air, this time I am quick enough and and 2 minutes later I have a very strong fighting 4-5lb common carp in the net.

I rebait both rods and recast, one is straight out under the tress on the far bank, about 15-20 yards, the other is only 5 yards out to my left; back under the bushes.
Nothing for about an hour, then the bite indicator, which is a wine cork painted white with a hair clip sticking out of the end, starts to tremble, then rise very slowly, as I move over to the rod, the indicator smashes upwards and the line starts racing out of the open reel. Lifting the rod, I shut the bail arm and strike away from the direction the line is going, wallop! A fight is

This is the rod with 8lb lne and 4lb hook to nylon, this might be a mistake, the fish is going nuts, I'm struggling to turn it without snapping the line, its a very good heavy ledger rod though, it is taking the shocks and allowing me to use the rod to take the strain rather than the line.
I keep turning him away from the over hanging branches and snag on the far bank, eventually I land a prime condition 10lb mirror.

Two weeks later, my mate Barry wants to have a go down here, so he turns up and we head off, this time to Pett, a village down by Winchelsea beach. There is a bit of the canal opposite the smugglers inn (very handy) so we set up there, this time after some jack pike.
I start pulling in roach after roach for live bait and a few skimmers, Barry gets nothing, the pike lines are picking up nothing. Then Barry's pike bung takes off down river at speed, he lifts the rod, give the pike time to turn the fish and strikes. Nothing, the pike let go, the bite marks on the roach show it would have been a good jack.
I get a couple of runs on the pike line but cant hook them, but I'm still hitting the roach on the light rod, had about 40 roach and skimmers now, Barry still has nothing. Oops.

Just as I pull in another roach of about 6oz, two blokes walk up and ask how we are doing, they have been fishing in a match about a mile up the canal and reckon that the roach I just caught would have won the match!!
They had been fishing the match all morning and no one of them had caught a thing.
As they are talking to me, off goes my pike bung, I pick up the rod and strike, its a 2-3lb pike, after that we packed up.
Final score, me about 40 roach, skimmers and one small pike.
Barry.... er... better luck next time mate.

Not that bad considering.

Tuesday, 14 September 2010

Top gear for bikes? or something similar.

Top gear for bikes?
or something similar.
For some time Jamie and myself have tried to get someone interested in a project like this. In fact for four years now, with no success, we get the occasional interest from media companies, either no one wants to take a risk, or they just don't listen to us properly. Yet loads of people want us to make it, the ordinary biker in the street thinks its a great idea, there is even a Facebook group called 'The BBC should make a Top Gear for bikes' so on these bits of information it should be a popular programmes.

We worked out how to make a pilot at minimal cost, of course we will not discuss the details with anyone until we have some sort of agreement, that would be foolish. The idea is pretty simple, but you have to be a biker to understand why it would work, there lies the problem, the last company I had a meeting with to discuss the project, kept saying "How can we get it more like the Mcgregor – Boreman thing?" Yet when questioned, he had not even seen it. All he knew was that is was successful, the whole point of the our project is to move away from that kind of show, make it more like 5th gear or Top Gear than travelogue, but with a twist that would make it appeal not only to bikers but the general public as well.

Now you could say why don't we make it ourselves? Yes, we could, but unless we hired a load of expensive equipment, it would not look professional, the videos Motorsickle put up on Youtube are made in a short time scale; with pretty primitive equipment. As we have always said, we are professional bikers, not journalists, everything we have done so far, we had to learn from scratch. And to be honest, I don't think we have done that bad, considering the constraints and handicaps we have worked under.

With some decent equipment and a couple of professional people, I think we could make a pilot that would capture the interest of bikers and the public, we have been offered quite a few bikes to feature, getting a famous biker to appear would help immensely, although most seem reluctant, or least the ones whose agents I have spoken too, to get involved with a new untried project. No one wants to be associated with a failure, plus some want stupidly high fees to appear!

Getting bikers interested in a 'Top Gear' style programmes for bikes is difficult, while most are saying that they want one, strange that while a lot of programmes feature bikes (Hairy Bikers, American Chopper, Long Way Round, and recently David Jason riding a classic Triumph in his homage to 'The Battle of Britain') why is it, that none of the production companies want to make a programmes geared solely for motorbikes, or is it strange?

Think about this, most cars drivers will watch a car, any car being thrashed around a track. Clarkson and co have a winning formula of fun and information, but mainly its entertaining, nearly everything you see is set up, it appeals to all groups and is designed purely as entertainment, not a true car programmes as such. We know Clarkson will not allow motorbikes on 'his' show, except for the one off Vietnam trip, which strangely was one of the most popular they have done, he refuses to allow them on, not because he hates them, it is just part of his 'act'. He puts himself up as the ordinary man in the street, but it is all an act designed to court controversy and keep his name in public eye, it's a perfect win-win formula.

Now consider bikers, how many race rep riders want to sit down and watch a BSA bantam being put through it paces? How many chopper riders want to watch a Ninja being hooned around a track? See the problem, anyone who comes up with a format that appeals across the board will have a winning formula, which we think we have, but then you have to persuade them to make it.

Getting started is proving to be hellishly difficult.... Because persuading tv executives that people want to see motorbikes on the television is not easy. Even when you show them how popular some already are. As stated above, car drivers will watch any car, but bikers are more selective.

Surprisingly, there is not a lot of interest from manufacturers, I have not figured out why yet, I think it is to do with not having proved itself, maybe they also want a tried and tested formula before committing themselves.

Another problem is support from bikers themselves. It is notoriously hard to get bikers to work together at anything, Warren Djangoly has done a sterling job organising the 'Notobikeparkingtax' demo's, in fact they have been very successful.

What we need is for someone to organise a some kind of run in support of a 'Top Gear' style programmes, if enough motorbikes turned up surely someone would then get interested.

In the meantime I shall still try to drum up some interest in the media, but after all this time, I am beginning to think no media executive is interested in motorbikes, or believes that there is not enough interest out there to make it work.

Maybe one day...


Saturday, 11 September 2010

The story so far....(Adoption)

I have tracked down an uncle and two aunts, we recently moved to the south coast and we have discovered my uncle lives less than 6 miles from where we are now, and my aunts not much further!
How random is that?

No trace of my mother so far, very odd, I cant find her or Mr CQ her husband easily. The name is a bit too common, making it difficult to collate records, getting there slowly though.
I have found one of my sisters, or at least an address in 2002 about 45 miles away, she was difficult because she had remarried and it muddied the waters. My brothers names are too common to trace, but again I'm working on it.
No trace of the other sister yet.

I'm getting very good at this tracing people lark though, it looks like I have a new skill, it all depends on noticing correlations between datum, I have always been a good problem solver on limited facts. Putting together apparently unrelated information until something clicks, combined with years of searching the internet for odd pieces of information have held me in good stead.
It also means I have accumulated a lot of sidetracking (Husband of one aunt done for D&D after a family tradgey etc) info, but

you never know when it may become another piece of the puzzle.
What does irk me, is that you pay for the use of a website that has some info, then to get the next bit you have to pay again!
I used to have 'access' to a lot of, not restricted, but not public, records, this made things fairly easy, but back then I didnt really need it. Hindsight eh!
Still I have made a lot of progress and I am learning a lot, about how to acquire information in this country. In the USA it is much easier to track someone down.

I have also found a person for someone else, old school friend, they had been looking for 3 years, I found them in 3 days.

Maybe I'll find a use for this skill, maybe not, at present though it is helping me on my journey to find out more about myself.

Thursday, 2 September 2010

My Adoption update (Long but worth reading)

Just when you think "I'm intelligent enough to work out what has gone on, I could be Sherlock Homles!" You find out you are completely wrong, doh! Finally got the papers relating to my adoption, it was taking a long time to get them through, now I know why.
There is a stack of paper 3 inches high, it relates to nearly four years of me being unsettled and moved between my BM, a couple of children's homes and my adoptive parents.
From what little info I had, plus some help from a few people, I thought I had worked out the details of 'who' but not quite 'why', it turns out I was wrong, my father was not who all the evidence pointed to, my four siblings are only half siblings again and I have acquired another (and possibly one other) half brother.

The social worker who is helping me with this said; It was the most complicated case from that era (1955 - 1959) that they had ever seen. (It bloody had to be mine, didn't it...!) obviously I shall not name names, but a quick synopsis goes, BM (Birth mother) from broken family, Father had head injury in the war and has become a drunk and is unable to work, mother is of an 'erratic and nervous disposition' Her grandmother died in a mental hospital.
She ended up living with an Aunt in Brighton and 'got into mischief' with a gang who caused some criminal damage to the seafront. She later ended up spending some time in a mental hospital in Bradford somewhere around her mid to late teens, we feel this was because of teenage depression, but have no evidence as to the cause. I have not found any proper records relating to this yet.
Two years before I was born (aged 18) she was living in Folkstone, and 'frequenting the barracks and making undesirable friendships', during this time she met her future husband, CQ, a solider, who suggested marriage, CQ was sent abroad in early 1954, when this happened she carried on with her 'bad associations'.

During March to June she 'became friendly' with a married man, GP, this is who she stated was my father, she left Folkstone to move to Ashford to get away from this man! No idea why at present.

In October 1954, BM went to St Faiths, Brasted, Kent, I was born there in Feb 1955 , in March 1955 she married CQ and both felt that it would be better to put me up for adoption.
In April 1955 CQ returned to Germany and a couple of weeks later I was placed in Beckenham nursery in Kent (Being boarded out with view to adoption).
June 1955 I was placed with the foster parents who would eventually become my adoptive parents. Mr & Mrs W.

July 1955 BM returns to the Beckenham nursery and becomes upset to find I had been placed with foster carers.
August/September 1955 Social services are becoming concerned that BM may want me back, due to her history and the fact that I appear to have settled in well with foster carers, this is giving them cause for concern.
September 1955 BM rejects adoption and states she wants me returned. Legally at the time she had every right to me.
October 1955 adoption society receives letter from BM asking for me back.
October 1955 Letter from Church of England society stating BM has visited them and states that she definitely wants me back. She is now living with a Mrs L in Andover and has not heard from her husband since he lost his stripe (rank) in June.

Late October 1955 letter written to FP's (foster parents) to inform them of BM's wishes, they are understandably upset, requests that I should be sent back to the Beckenham nursery are rejected by FP's, they state they would rather hold on to me as long as possible.

Nothing heard from BM, letter is sent in June 1956 to the SSAFA (Soldiers, Sailors and Air force Association) attempting to track down Mr &/or Mrs CQ.
July 1956 Son born to birth mother, father Mr L, son of Mrs L whom she is staying with in Andover.

August 1956 letter sent to BM asking if she will agree to me being adopted.
August 1956 Letter received from Mr L stating he is my father???? (This was later found to be complete rubbish) and that they have no intention of letting me be adopted and want me returned to their care.

Between September and October of 1956 there is no response to any letters sent to BM.
Attempts are made to try and find her.
29th of October BM appears and states she will not agree to adoption.
November 1956 BM leaves Mr L, their son is left in his care.
November 1956 letter arrives from CQ, stating he is reunited with BM and that they want me back with them.

Are you still keeping up?

December 1956 Mr & Mrs CQ meet with Social services and state that they are reconciled and both wish to get me back, CQ is keen to adopt me and make a success of the marriage.
December 1956 letter to FP's stating the current position, both are very upset.
December 1956 Mr & Mrs CQ want me back before Xmas, the SS are reluctant to allow this as Mr & Mrs CQ are still waiting to move into proper army quarters. Mr & Mrs CQ are told they need to move into suitable accommodation before I will be allowed back.

April 1957 I was taken away from FP's who were distraught, and placed in Tunbridge Wells nursery in order to allow introductions with Mr & Mrs CQ, who did not turn up on the first date they were supposed to.
16th June 1957 first visit from Mr & Mrs CQ with me at Tunbridge.
29th June 1957 Mr & Mrs CQ took me home to Olney, Bedfordshire.

19th July 1957 letter arrives stating I have settled in well with BM and Mr CQ
(There appear to have been no or at least no recorded visits, by social services between June 1957 and February 1958)

November 1957 Baby girl born to Mr & Mrs CQ.

February 1958 letter arrives from BM stating she finds it hard with Me and her daughter, she now feels it was wrong to take me away from FP's.
March 1958 SS visit me and BM, they find me passive and unresponsive, pale, underweight and not interested in anything.
(There is a lot of medical and psychological info that I will not go into here)

April 1958 I am collected from BM's, who does not kiss me goodbye and is (according to the SS records) more concerned over what the neighbours will think.
May 1958 I am returned to FP's, initially SS were concerned because in the meantime FP's had adopted another boy 16 months younger than me. But visits show I progressed normally almost from the instant of being returned to FP's. In fact the records show that SS are completely amazed at my progress, fast weight gain, much more talkative and obviously enjoying being back with FP's.

September 1958 Case adoption committee approves application to adopt me from the FP's.
December 1958 visit arranged by SS with BM and husband, the records are unclear whether this actually happened or not.
January 1959 Adoption legalised by Wandsworth county court. Reading through the correspondence it appears the adoption hearing was not a clear cut affair and is unlikely that BM ever gave permission for the adoption. Although we have no evidence either way.

Wednesday, 28 July 2010

Writers block?

Well we have finally 'semi-retired' into the country, a lovely little cottage with a really long garden, just a couple of miles inland from Winchelsea beach. Its a fabulous location, the people here are really friendly, the two pubs in the village are equally good (although one is literally over the road) and the view from the house superb.
We can be on the beach in less than 10 minutes, Camber sands is 15/20 minutes away, Hastings 10.
I no longer have to work for a while, so I am trying to put all my effort into writing, and there is the problem, writers block, I am actually writing this to try and get my creative juices flowing again, all the ideas I had for articles, and the books, seem to have evaporated away, or not seem as much as a good idea as I had originally thought.

I really cant work out why, I was all fired up to get started on my writing when we moved here, now I'm stuck in a hell of no ideas at all. This is quite unlike me, normally any excuse to write any old rubbish on the net gets me going, churning out long rambling diatribes has been my signature piece for years, yet I have hit this block, this brick wall of nothingness that stands between me and the many outpourings that I know are there.
What do I need to do to get things flowing again?
Even writing this seems an effort, could this change in environment have caused it? Does my more stress free lifestyle mean I have now lost the edge?

Possibly living and working in London, with a high stress job had a big influence on what I was writing, it may have been the outlet for my frustration, could losing all that have taken the bite out of my musings?
I think it more likely that my mind needs to adapt to the new life we have chosen, it will take a little time for my brain to adjust to not having any pressure, not having to worry about getting up to go to work (I still wake at silly o'clock in the morning out of habit) the only pressure I have is to get the garden watered, or to decide where to go for lunch, maybe I need more than that, maybe I need the stress to enable me to write? I certainly hope not.

Watch this space.

Tuesday, 27 July 2010

I hate kids.

Looking after two 12 year old girls is not a job for an old school biker.
You cant take them to the pub or the local pole dancing club (although why anyone would want to watch polish builders dance in a bar is beyond me), me missus and her daughter buggered off to the pub last night and left them in my care.
Muhahaha.... or not as the case may be, I have never wanted kids, I cant stand them!!
But seem to have loads of the buggers around, I think Ruth has got about 50 kids!! Or it feels that way, moving to the seaside (or as near as damnit) to relax and review my life, may not have been such a good idea. Its the school holidays and Ruth has a granddaughter... ho hum... Megan and her friend are here for the duration, I now know how Eastenders felt in the blitz! What do you do with two pre teenage girls who going on 27. Answers on a postcard, and not crude ones please! (Shut it Jamie!)
And now I disover we get rid of her friend tomorrow, only to collect another one at the weekend, and she is staying with us, in the camper, until we get to Ireland in 3 weeks time!
I must have done something seriously wrong in a previous life.

Tuesday, 4 May 2010

Why you should vote.

On the 6th of May, you all get the chance to vote for your MP's.
A couple of things to remember before you cast your vote, and you should vote, even if you cant think of who to vote for.

Dont vote against a good MP, if your MP is a good one, but you dont agree with the party, vote for him anyway and let him know you are voting for him and his good works, not the party he belongs too. There is no point in getting rid of one good man, maybe you dont agree with the party anymore, but that is no reason to dump someone who does a good job.

If you cant think who to vote for, then vote for the person who is nearest your views, I would even advise voting for an independent, if he is a local man or woman and knows his stuff, give him a chance. But dont vote for him/her if they are not capable of doing the job, this defeats the object of the exercise.

One of my pet hates, is people saying "I really like him but he has no chance, so I'll vote for someone else", I know from personal experience how this can work against, not only the candidate, but the people who would like him to get in.
Vote with your beliefs, not because you want to be voting for the winner or because you want to stop someone else, all the parties are saying what a disaster it will be if the other fellow gets in, they are not actually telling us what they will do.So go with who you think will do the best job in your area.

What they are also not telling us, is that whoever gets in is going to have to upset the general populace to get the economy back on track, believe me, when they get going it will hurt, unless we want to end up like Greece (and it could happen) then we have to knuckle down and get this country back on its feet. We really need to vote for people that will sort out all the problems, not just keep us 'comfortable', by continuing the status quo things will only get worse, all we are doing is pushing the problems further down the line. And the further we push them the worse they will get.

So get out and vote this thurday, but do it for the right reasons and vote for the people that you believe can do the most good.

Wednesday, 31 March 2010

Art, a personal view.

Wandered around a couple of exhibitions the other day, art is a very personal thing, but sometimes I wonder if what we are sometimes 'told' is art, really is.
This is not meant as a proper review of any of the works here, this is a just my personal opnion of two very different works and a look at my own quirky view of art.
The first exhibition was by Norman Cornish, a very narrow view of his life in Spennymoor, I wont go into the details of his life as they are irrelevant, this is just my view of his work.
I had a problem at first with his distorted perspective, probably because of my engineering and technical background, then once I got past that, I found a wonderful series of studies of life in a mining village. His facial studies show he was a man who knew faces, there is a warm depth to his work that you feel, the street scenes have a sense of fun, I felt none of the bleakness that other artists of that ilk convey.

From Norman cornish I went into an exhibition by a gentleman called William Tucker, I had never heard of him, I hope not to bother again, I could not make head nor tail of his pieces at all, when I first view a piece, I always avoid reading any signs nearby, so as to form my own impression; of what the artist is trying to do, from the works at Kingsplace in York way, I can only assume he was constipated. The works were formless and made no sense to me. I got no feeling of, well, anything from them, they reminded me vaguely of an animated claymation series called 'Red and Blue' other than that, they did nothing for me whatsoever.

I have no problem with modern art, I love Rothko where as most of my friends dont get him, but the works of William Tucker did nothing for me, art should have an effect of some kind,
be it disgust, admiration or amusement etc, but to have no effect at all is wrong. Maybe its me?
Perhaps I no longer see art as I used to, I did have to 'learn' about art many years ago, I had a very good teacher in one of my ex-girlfriends, she helped me to 'see' art, whereas before that I would have dismissed most as rubbish.
Maybe I need to get out more, we do not get many chances to visit galleries these days, although that will change very soon. Personal perference can be a volatile thing, it can change from the smallest of influences, as I get older, I find myself drawn towards more traditional art over the modern, yet I suppose it comes down to what pleases my eye, our preference in art should be no more than that really, I always remember being told, if you are going to buy art, dont buy for investment, buy it because it pleases you. Very wise words.

Apathy poem

Stand up stand up
be counted
Stand up stand up
this once.

Dont sit at home
dont sit and moan
dont be fool
or dunce.

Get out and
make the effort
get out and
join the fray

Content are you
to let others work
as your freedom
ebbs away.

Will you shout
about injustice
will your voice
be one that's shrill.

Or will you sit
in front of tele
while it slowly
saps your will.

Do you moan
about the petrol
your tax
and VAT

While you sit
in pub
with glass in hand
drinking G&T

We try to fight
your corner
but you think
we protest too far

The demo has
delayed you
stuck sitting
in your car.

You will never
join the demo
never make your
voices heard.

Content to sit
and complain
as your freedom
again is curbed.

I also know that
my poetry
will fall upon
deaf ears.

As you will
never change
its been this way
for years

The government
they have you
trapped in a
comfort zone

To rock the boat
un-nerves you
so all you do
is moan.

Wednesday, 10 March 2010

Jake rambles on again....and again....

We have four years to prepare for the elections, as do the political parties, yet we do nothing until the last moment, we should be out there talking to our representatives, we should be pressing them on the issues that bother us. But no, we will wait and then get stuck with the same old boring/safe faces, we need new blood in politics, we need to get some MP's who are not scared to stand up and tell it like it is. Most are just covering there arses to get another 4 years in a secure and well paid job. The system is failing, yet we allow the current crop of politicians to keep patching the system with promises that it will get better, maybe we do not want our boats rocked, maybe we dont want any disturbance in our cosy little lives, yet we want them to fix everything, well let me tell you, when someone does get out there and attempt to 'fix' what ails our society, its going to hurt most of us.

This is what scares most people, they have got into a life style that is comfortable and relatively luxurious compared to most people around the world, they don’t want that to change, this life where people do not have to do much thinking for themselves, where they can get virtually anything they want, and I do mean anything, just by quoting a credit card number.

We have been led into a life where we are just to frightened to make any major changes, where our comfort zone is now so big that, any change, would bring our world crashing down around our ears.
50 years ago a car was a luxury item, as was a television and, believe it or not, even a fridge! (We got our first fridge in 1966, up until then everything we had was fresh everyday) The things we take for granted these days were not always freely available, we forget very easily that these things are transient, the government is quite happy to have you throwing stuff away and buying the latest gadgets, it keeps the economy going, but for how much longer?

How long can we sustain this insatiable appetite that is generated by advertising and the consumer society? How long before we wake up and say “I don’t care if Joe Bloggs has a car that is 2/10ths of a second faster than mine!” (Unless you are a drag racer)?
The whole of western society is driven by this consumerism, a consumerism that is created by market forces and designed to make money for the people at the top of the tree.
They don’t care about you, they just want you to buy, and buy, and buy, as long as we ‘think’ we need the latest gadgets then they will provide, how many of you actually use all that computing power at your fingertips? We sometimes forget that these gadgets are tools and not toys.

We need people in power than will look further than 4 years ahead, we need a long term plan to get us out of this downward spiral, I somehow doubt we will get it, so be prepared to be taxed even more heavily in the coming years.


Wednesday, 10 February 2010

The 2010 elections, get out and vote!!

Get out there and vote, but first learn about the candidates even the ones you thought you knew, check their backgrounds, check their 'other' jobs, you might be surprised at what 'vested' intesterests some have and dont give me crap about "There is no one to vote for!"
There should be at least one candidate you could vote for, you just need to do the research first, there might be a great independent guy that you have not noticed, if not then get someone to run for MP, I bet you know someone who could do the job?
And I dont want to hear "Whats the point? He will never win!" FSS vote with your conscience, not because YOU want to win, voting for someone else 'because he wont win' is a pathetic excuse, if everyone who thought that, actually voted for who they liked, it would make a massive difference. It would also send a big message to the current incumbents.

Dont abandon your current MP though, if he does a good job, he may be Labour or Tory but if he does a good job, is it worth dumping him just for a protest vote? Do tell him you dont like the party politics, do tell him his party leader is a twat, make sure he knows you are only voting for him locally and not for his party.

We need to see how to change the way we look at our politicians, recent scandals about expenses (Funny that no one noticed when I was banging on about it in Feb 2008) the cushy lives and jobs after they leave, are all starting to make us sit up and think whats going on here? Politics used to be a vocation, now its just another job, is that the way we want politicians to see it? As just another job? All parties are starting to look the same, there are few differences now between the main two parties
But the general public will still wont make an effort, they wont get out there and question their MP's, oh some will, but not enough to make a difference, it is that lazyness that has always worried me, some dont even bother to vote, is this because they really believe it makes no difference or is it, as I believe, that they just dont care, as long as their little bubble carries on making their lives comfortable. People wont vote for a change that will inconvinience them or make them uncomfortable, never mind that the patches; that the current politicians are papering over the cracks with, wont last forever, at some point we have to a take a big fall to cure the ills of society. But we dont want it to be us, so lets keep pushing it back for our children to deal with it.
We have become a society of wasters, a society of selfish people who have lost the feeling of community, if we dont deal with it, our children will have too. So lets get out there and check out the candidates, lets take a good look at what we can do and what we can change, lets get together and discuss it, for we might find that the guy we wanted to for, but we belived was a waste of time cos he wont get in, is the guy we ALL wanted to vote for.

Make an effort for once, learn about the people who will be running your lives, with your money, before its too late (again).

Friday, 5 February 2010

Who am I? An adoption search.

There are several threads on a forum I frequent about my adoption, I have decided to post it all on here as well.

So lets bring you all up to date on what I am doing and why I am posting this in the open.

My brother and myself are both adopted, we have always known this, I have never been interested in finding out about my history or family. I have never really been that family orientated, then a couple of years ago two things happened, first my daughter got in contact after 27 years and that started off a lot of thoughts in my head, then my brothers mother got in contact with him, only to die 8 months later. My brother found he had 7 half brothers and sisters and a myriad of relatives.

So I decided to do a little investigating to find out who I am and where I come from, it turns out, that my (adoptive) mother had put a block on any contact from our birth parents, which they could do in the 50's. It was only after her death that a letter was allowed to go to my brother from his original mother, with a bit of not very difficult detective work and a little help from a certain wonderfully resourceful person on, it looks like my mother and possibly my father are still alive, there are also possibly four siblings, not half ones, around as well.

At this point I stopped and decided to go through the proper channels, it would not be fair for me to just turn up (oh I have tracked them down and know where they all live) they might (though I doubt it, I have been very careful) be the wrong people.
On the 18th of this month I have my first meeting with the adoption counselors, I shall let you all know the result of this.

Now, why am I posting what is essentially a 'private' affair?
Because there is still this stigma attached to adoption, I have spoken to and had emails from a lot of people since starting this, most start by saying 'dont tell anyone but I was adopted.....etc' I find this so sad, why should there be a stigma? It is not our fault, I think there are a lot of people out there who would like to track down their birth parents, but are a little afraid/unsure about the process, so I hope that this thread will help them or at least help them decide what to do.

If any case your first step should be to contact your local adoption counselor, you can find them through google or ask at your council offices/doctors.

Wednesday, 27 January 2010

Fear and Loathing in St Reathham

The air was cold, not as cold as a few weeks ago with the snow and biting wind, but still cold enough to add a bite to my lungs, especially after the warm air from the central heating, I had been using the tube to get to work in Kings Cross but I hate the tube and most of the people who use it.

I manoeuvred the bike backwards out if the front drive and started to warm her up, her being my ratted out ZZR1100, 20 years old and nearly 50k on the clock but still going well, she needs a new exhaust at present as there is a little hole in the collector... well when I say little, its about 2 inches across, so, a tad noisy then, but sounds great!

Feeling like I had half my wardrobe wrapped around my body, I climbed on and eased out the clutch, by the time I had gone half a mile I was cold, but feeling good, for the first time in ages the roads were clear and dry, ok some big potholes had appeared after all that snow and freezing, thawing and freezing again, but I could deal with that, or so I thought.

I started getting a move on once the tyres had warmed up, I have some mid-ranged priced tyres that were a bargain from FWR in South London (plug plug), and warming them up before you gun it is pretty essential, after a few miles the tyres were working and I was enjoying a bit of bend swinging and extreme filtering, getting up to Streatham I reached the bend by the church and found the road empty, I have never seen it this empty, so gunned the bike in second and held it as I passed the apex of the bend, I was quite a way over on the bike when the front suddenly went light, as I watched the front started to come up higher and higher and this while leaned over at about 45 degrees, the throttle just would not close, then it did, much quicker than I wanted and threw the front back at the ground, I blipped the throttle whilst slipping the clutch, to try and get control without losing traction or power at the back wheel. As the front end dropped back onto the road I saw with horror a pothole about 3-4 inches deep, right where the front wheel was heading for, there was nothing I could do, the crunch as it hit jerked my whole body, the front wheel bounced into the air again as I tried to wrestle back control, without the front wheel on the ground I was using my body weight to control the crazily bucking bike. As I threw my weight over to lift the back of the bike, the back wheel hit the pothole and tried to go in the opposite direction, I got a glimpse of people standing at the bus stop as I careered towards them, I think they thought they were going to die, I leaned forward hard and the front tyre bit into the road, then started a tank slapper that threatened to rip out my arms, I blipped the throttle to get the wheel off the ground again so I could straighten the bars without fighting against the weight of the bike. This worked, I eased off on the throttle and dabbed the back brake which brought the front end back down under my control and the bike settled down again.

I pulled over and found I had been holding my breath, I let in out in long drawn out sigh, then as I composed myself, a Jamaican with phenomenal dreads wandered over and said "Mon, you's going to need new underwear now!" before walking away with a big grin, and do you know, he was right!