29 November 2017

Oldham Athletic @ Sarfend United

One of the joys of getting old is being eligible for OAP or senior citizen discounts.

My ticket is £15 where any adult up to 59 years and 364 days will pay £22.

The game was originally planned for November 11th but was postponed as Latics had players on international duty.

Lovely jubbly.

A work colleague saw the club badge. She thought the owl looks very angry. I'd never thought of that before. 

Deep Purple @ The O2

What can I say?

I'd not seen Deep Purple for about 40 years and then twice in just a few!

I had to leave work and travel home.  Walk the dog. Then Claire came home and it was a rush to get to Ashford for the high speed train to Stratford. We made it. Didn't have enough change for the very expensive car park. But used the online booking on my phone!!

This time to cut the walking to save Claire's wonky hip we went Stratford International, DLR to Stratford mainline and then Jubilee Line to North Greenwich.  In the end it was a cock-up as the escalators at Stratford International were broken and we had to walk up. Then at North Greenwich the up escalator was broken.

Dinner in Wagamama. Two chicken katsu later we emerged to join a very long queue for security.

This time we had seats in the 100 series lower tier. Unlike the 400 series seats these are gently sloping and still with an unobstructed view. We also had the back row with just the disabled platform above and behind us.  Perfect.

The show was fantastic.  This time I didn't have to go to the loo just as they started "Smoke on the Water"! 

The support was from Europe. Apart from The Final Countdown I had never heard any of their stuff!!

We had to leave for our trains home about 2245 and they were still going. We missed one extra encore song.

Noticeboard at North Greenwich Station
Couple of pix from the night
Support from Europe

And here are a couple of links to videos I took.  Yeah I know.  Damned clowns with their cameras.... in my defence. We were on the back row!! NO one behind to get pissed off!!

28 November 2017

Oldham Athletic @ The Gills

Saturday was the first opportunity to see Latics in the south this year when I could go. I missed the relatively local trip to Gillingham last year as it clashed with something else. This year I got a ticket for my brother as well. 

We met at Gillingham station and walked down to the ground.  It was bitterly cold.  Even with four layers of clothes and a woolly hat it was still freezing.

The game wasn't too bad and a draw was a fair enough result, but Latics could have won had they shot a bit more often and the keeper made a save from a swerving ball and they cleared one off the line.  The Latics' keeper, Johnny Placido, made a world class save from a free-kick in the last seconds of the game.

The journey home was okay. I got a seat at Ebbsfleet. I was home in good time.

Due to both side being eliminated from the FA Cup.  On December 2nd they are once again down south at Southend United.  If the weather is too shitty to go to Ostend. I might go over there.  Last time I rode there but if it is too shitty for Ostend it will be too shitty for that as well.

Luckily though. The journey by train doesn't look too bad. Southend is way outside my season ticket (train not football!). 

London has nine zones forming rings around the city. My season ticket is valid for zones 1 to 6. So I'll need a ticket from Zone 6 out to Prittlewell. The nearest station to the stadium.

Let's see what the weather brings us.

23 November 2017

Evolution of the Ford Mustang

Just have to share this gif I was sent.  It even covers some of the ugly as shit models that should never have been allowed off the drawing board.

I almost bought a 67 model back in about 78 or 79.  It was for sale at work and even with five years driving experience and a full no claims bonus (discount) I could afford the car but not the insurance premium.

The insurance was well over what the car would have cost to buy.  Did I regret not buying it?


MAG opposes 'disproportionate' pillion ban

The Motorcycle Action Group (MAG) has expressed concerns about the prospect of a ban on pillion passengers in London – a proposal which has been raised to combat the scooter crime epidemic currently gripping the city.

The idea has been put forward by Green Greater London Authority member, Sian Berry who said  'A very small number of people are causing large amounts of fear on our street".   A local safer-neighbourhood panel Chair pointed out a tactic used in some other countries: to temporarily ban the carrying of pillion passengers across whole cities.'

MAG's London Regional representative, Tim Fawthrop, has expressed his opposition to any blanket ban:  'As Ms Berry herself states, she isn't sure this is right for London, and we agree.  While all of us recognise the need to find solutions to the scooter mugger problem, the honest law-abiding, hard-working Londoner who takes his partner to work to cut costs and commuting time will be badly affected by this.  It's not as if the criminals will obey this law amongst all the others they are breaking. The Police will be hard-pushed with current staffing levels to enforce it and that will undermine the effectiveness of all laws.'

Tim adds 'In 2011, Honduras banned motorcycle passengers after a series of drive-by killings.  In addition, a ban was imposed in Medellin, Colombia, at the height of drugs cartel violence.  Are we really saying London is comparable to Honduras and Columbia?  I don't think so.  While it may be legitimate to impose a passenger ban on convicted criminals, doing so on a blanket basis is a disproportionate response to the challenge we're trying to address.'

MAG will make these points in December 2017 at the Home Office forum which has been set up to address the moped mugger problem. Contact MAG at 01926 844 064 or central-office@mag-uk.org

19 November 2017


I have only lived here since 1999. We have a nice little town. 

Once the town was on the coast directly but over the years our side of the Channel silted up. Resulting in the capital of the "Cinque Ports" becoming further from the sea itself. We still have a beach and a promenade but they are further from the town centre.

In the photo is the Royal Military Canal. Built in case Napoleon invaded and to be used as a moat to delay and stop the invaders. They never came and the canal is a national monument.



18 November 2017

Dainese Scout Evo GTX gloves

After last weekend's ride in just about 2°C air temperature I knew I needed a new pair of more winter season gloves.

Santa unfortunately doesn't come to me anymore so it was left to Mastercard  to get involved.

We dropped into Laguna and after choosing a glove I thought might fit the bill but on the way to see if they had my size, I saw the "sale" bin. They still came in at over a £100.

In there we some Dainese gloves. Part leather part fabric.  I tried a pair on and like Goldilocks one pair too big. One pair too small but the next pair.  Just right.

You simply know. The fit was so "easy". Natural I suppose you could say.

I've worn them about the house and tomorrow if the weather isn't too wintry they'll get the first outing. 

Update 19/11/2017

Didn't get to try them out. At 2°C and frosty road and car iced I decided not to risk it.

Felt a bit guilty until on the back road I witnessed a cyclist slide off on an ice patch. That made me feel vindicated. 

14 November 2017

First digital camera?

I was looking through some of the blogs I follow and came across Bandit Rider's blog about cameras.  It kicked off a debate about cameras and when we all bought our first digital effort. 

As the eldest/oldest it seems I had the distinction of buying one first.  Back in 1998 I bought a Casio QV10a. I didn't come with a box just a soft case and some cables bundled in an elastic band.  It was of course new but an ex-demo model. I have no idea where those cables are now!

I still have it and recently took it out of the drawer where it has been residing for at least the last 19 years! In fact the 320/240 pixel output was so poor, and its hunger for 4 AA batteries meant it didn't see a lot of action.

It's first major use was in 1999 when I took it to Austria on my trip to the Wasserbuffel Club Rally near Mauterndorf in Salzburgerland. I used it a couple of times.  But essentially it only worked with bright daylight and ate batteries too fast to use sensibly.  It allegedly holds 96 pictures in the internal memory.  But batteries never lasted long enough to get that many.

The problem is that the cable I can't find has a jack plug at one end and a serial connection at the other. How to connect it to a modern computer might prove difficult.

Time to get it out of the drawer again?

Googling earlier I found the manual is still available!  Linked below.  



7 November 2017

News from the Motorcycle Action Group (MAG)

New low with London acid attacks and Merseyside killing

The Motorcycle Action Group (MAG) has described the most recent acid attack as a 'new low in bike crime' and expressed its frustration at the shocking assault on a rider, potentially leaving him with a visual impairment.

MAG has offered its sincere sympathy to the victim of the attack, a delivery moped rider named Muhammed Nawshad Kamal, who was assaulted by thugs attempting to steal his moped in the Walthamstow area of London. MAG's London Regional Representative Tim Fawthrop said 'there's not much to say which helps in this situation, except that a shudder went through the riding community when news of this attack became known.  We're already working with local authorities and the police to reduce bike crime, but our efforts have come too late for Mr Kamal and that grieves me as a rider and us as a movement.'

MAG's National Chair, Selina Lavender, adds 'after the relative success of preventing mass lawbreaking at Halloween, this incident dampens the mood and leaves me feeling exasperated that such criminal, lawless behaviour still exposes riders to continual danger.  We're drawing up a plan of action which we intend to share with relevant groups later in November, and with the next Home Office anti-bike crime meeting shortly after that.  If ever there was a dreadful example of the constant peril bikers have to put up with, the attack on Mr Kamal is it.'

MAG understands that the police have arrested two teenagers for this attack and that acid was thrown at the victim more than once.  While there are options regarding the penalty, it is worth noting that there have been calls for involving the parents or guardians.  It has also been pointed out that compensation is a factor, given the potentially permanent effect this attack will have on the rest of the victim's life.  There is provision in law to hold people for very long periods if their crimes are serious enough and courts can commit people of any age to detention at Her Majesty's pleasure, potentially indefinitely.

In separate incidents, a man in Merseyside was fatally stabbed by a number of criminals who used scrambler bikes for the assault, and reports are coming in regarding yet another acid attack.  These appalling crimes underline the national nature of this epidemic.  MAG is investigating the situation and has previously engaged with police on these matters.

Contact MAG at 01926 844 064 or EMail Central Office

1 November 2017


"If music be the food of love, play on,
Give me excess of it; that surfeiting,
The appetite may sicken, and so die."

We have often been to concerts since Claire and I met back in 1999.  Most of them I have to admit at my bidding it has to be said.

Some have been less than exciting for her, but have actually been very good and she enjoyed the spectacle.  From the Download Festival (where I was lucky to have won £300 worth of tickets) to Motorhead and of course, last week, Metallica.

Motorhead were probably at the lower interest level. The last time we saw them the support was The Damned.  And it is The Damned we are going to see in February at the Leas Cliff Hall in Folkestone.  Only a few miles from home.  No travel to London.

First up in November is a return to the O2 to see Deep Purple. A farewell tour? 

A gig free December leads us into the New Year and  Think Floyd at the Leas Cliff Hall. Another tribute band that get good reviews.

February, see that Damned concert and a few days after the Illegal Eagles.  The latter are a superb tribute to The Eagles.  They don't try to look like them, they simply play the music and play it very well.  They also sing the harmonies as it Glen and the gang were there... standin' on the corner.

And then what?

Carol King's musical "Beautiful" in March, but not at the Leas Cliff Hall but at the Marlowe Theatre in Canterbury.


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