Sunday, 29 December 2013

New Years in London

Where to spend New Years Eve?
That all important question that comes up every year. Maybe we should ask each other where to spend the Winter?
I am not a big fan of the cold dark wet months of Winter in London.
I think I will be in front of the TV at home this New Years Eve or I might go to a small party at my friend`s house.
Is it better to be in some new place like Big Ben in the cold or on a beach in the warm?
Blue skies and sunshine is where I want to be. I sure don`t want to spend the first part of 2014 slumped in some cold kitchen or walking around the streets with a can of something in my hand.

Thursday, 19 December 2013

Perivale Poem

Born in Perivale

Not far from Percy Bilton Bridge
I first learned to read and write and pray at St John Fishers
In the street I scored my first goals
I strived to be a Wiseman in Greenford senior school
Sadly this was where I also had to say goodbye to my brother.
The Perivale train I rode to work day after day
So many people in the same race the pace was too fast the cost too high
So one day I stopped taking that same train and left that race

Now I am home, not far from Flynns And The Fox
Discarded beer cans lying blinking in the rain
Many mini-markets selling food from far places
CCTV cameras and speedbumps like fallen soldiers
Thousands of tweets, ,likes n txts
A Celtic son still close to his Fairfields of home.


Tuesday, 10 December 2013

Nelson Mandela

"I have fought against white domination, and I have fought against black domination. I have cherished the ideal of a democratic and free society in which all persons live together in harmony and with equal opportunities. It is an ideal which I hope to live for and to achieve.

"But if needs be, it is an ideal for which I am prepared to die."

Tuesday, 26 November 2013

Tuesday, 12 November 2013

A great English song but not such a good singer.

This is a song from the early 1980`s by The Jam.
The song is called A Town called Malice. I will not say who was trying to sing it in the video.
Many English students like to improve their vocabulary by learning the words of popular English songs.
Hope you like it.

Friday, 1 November 2013

Ha`penny Bridge Dublin

Ha`penny Bridge Dublin
The bridge's official name is 'Liffey Bridge' but is known to everybody in Ireland as the Ha'Penny Bridge in memory of its toll which was one halfpenny. It is the oldest pedestrian bridge in Dublin, and also the most famous. The bridge dates back to 1816 and was Originally called the Wellington Bridge in memory of the Duke of Wellington.
The bridge was constructed using cast iron, a material that is prone to bad decay with aging. In recent times the bridge was closed while extensive repairs were carried out by Harland and Wolff who were made famous for constructing the Titanic. The Bridge arcs over the Liffey and is crowned by three lamps. 
I have crossed this bridge many times over the years. I used to visit Dublin more often when my dad was alive. He returned back to live in Ireland about 30 years ago. I can remember meeting him, near here a few times and going into a nearby pub for a quick pint.
This bridge is also known as a meeting point for young lovers. Look closely when you cross and you will see some graffiti marking the event.
My last crossing of this bridge was three years ago, with my brother. He was over from America and we flew over to Dublin together to see the sights and catch up with some of our relatives that we had not seen in ages. I wonder when I will next cross the Ha`penny bridge?

Tuesday, 29 October 2013

The Craic Was Ninety In The Isle Of Man. A great Irish song

The Craic Was Ninety In The Isle Of Man 

Ah weren't we the rare old stock
Spent the evening getting locked
In the Ace of Hearts
Where the high stools were engaging
Over by the Butt Bridge, down by the dock
The boat she sailed at five o'clock
"Ah Hurry now lads" says Whack
"Or before we're there sure we'll all be back"
Carry him if you can
Oh the Craic was Ninety in the Isle of Man

Before we reached the Alexander Base
The ding dong we did surely raise
In the bar of the boat, had great sport
As the ship she sailed out from the port
Landed up in the Douglas Head
Enquiring for a vacant bed
To the dining room soon got shown
By a decent woman from up the road
Bate that if you can
Oh the Craic was Ninety in the Isle of Man

Next morning went for a ramble round
For to see the sights of Douglas Town
All went in for a mighty session
In a pub they call Dick Darby's
All got drunk by half past three
To sober up we went swimming in the sea
Back to the digs for the spruce up
While waitin' for the rosie
We all drew up our plan
Oh the Craic was Ninety in the Isle of Man

That night we went to the Texas Bar
We came back down by horse and car
Met Big Jim and we all went in
To drink some wine in Yeats's
The Liverpool Judies, it was said
Were all to be met in the Douglas Head
McShane was there in a tie and shirt
The foreign girls he was trying to flirt
Sayin' "Here girls I'm your man"
Oh the Craic was Ninety in the Isle of Man

Whacker fancied his good looks
With an Isle of Man woman he was struck
A Liverpool lad was by her side
And he pegging the jar into her
Whacker thought he'd take a chance
He asked the quare one out to dance
Round the floor they stepped it out
To Whack it was no bother
Everything was going to plan
Oh the Craic was Ninety in the Isle of Man

Well the Isle of Man woman fancied Whack
But your man stood there till his heads came back
And whack they all whacked into Whack
Poor Whack was landed on his back
The Douglas force arrived as well
Landed a couple of belts as well
Ended up in the Douglas jail
Until the Dublin boat did sail
Deported every man
Oh the Craic was Ninety in the Isle of Man
Yes he Craic was Ninety in the Isle of Man

Sunday, 27 October 2013

Wednesday, 16 October 2013

Is cheekiness a truly British concept?

So what is it exactly? Well, maybe it's easier to define what it's not. It's not quite the same as audacity - it takes itself less seriously than that. And it's not as rude as impudence because cheekiness never sets out to truly offend. Cheekiness, then, is neither high-minded nor aggressive. Its hallmark is good-hearted humour, a certain cheeriness of spirit.

Often it is loud - think of the effectiveness of the whoopee cushion left on the unsuspecting teacher's chair. But it can be just as deadly when silent, or even sartorial.

Cheekiness isn't just funny, though. It has the power to deflate pomposity faster than any whoopee cushion

Translating cheekiness to someone unfamiliar with the concept in Britain can be tricky. Could it be that cheekiness as a concept is untranslatable, unique to the UK?

I looked at two of the cheekiest languages on earth - Yiddish and Punjabi - to see if they had any equivalents. In Yiddish, chutzpah does embody perhaps 90% of what it means to be cheeky. But the flexibility of cheekiness somehow outdoes the necessary boldness of chutzpah.


Cheeky can be subtle.Frankie Howerd

Punjabi, too, is also a highly cheeky language, which is full of words to call people who are a bit forward. Paada is someone precocious, a chatty kind of character, jigr aala literally means she or he who has liver, the organ of courage, and maacha describes a blagger, a chancer. But none of them quite captures the essence of cheekiness correctly.

Even across nations that speak the same language, it's unclear. I asked several American friends if the term had a US equivalent, but some told me that the concept doesn't even exist in the same way. Meanwhile the internet turned up the frankly inexcusable translation of "cheeky monkey" as "zesty little chipmunk".

'Cheeky monkey'

Capuchin monkey

  • The Capuchin monkey is native to central and southern America

  • Intelligent and dexterous, they use tools such as stones to crack open nuts

  • Named by explorers for their resemblance to an order of Catholic friars

I can't comment on the cultural nuances of zesty chipmunks, but science has suggested that cheeky monkeys really do exist. The primatologist Franz de Waal famously showed the world of an outraged Capuchin monkey reacting to inequality. When its monkey friend received better food - a delicious succulent, sweet grape rather than the pedestrian cucumber they had both been enjoying previously - the cheeky monkey threw the piece of cucumber back into the face of the researcher who fed him.

Monkeys are cheeky because they are intelligent enough to be aware not only of complex social rules and expectations of behaviour, but also of the ways in which they can deliberately break these rules and thus express their refusal to accept the way things are.

Friday, 11 October 2013

Kew Gardens in West London
I visited Kew gardens a few weeks ago. It is a very relaxing calming place to spend an afternoon. I prefer it when the weather is warm but why is it so expensive? I don`t think it is right to charge £14 to walk around a very big park.

Monday, 7 October 2013

Dave and Polish Pete looking for monkeys

In a cafe at the bus station on my way to Tarifa in Southern Spain.

It is the last day of my holiday.
I am staying in Polish Pete`s flat in Gibraltar.
I am glad I made the trip to Spain and Gib and
It hasn't cost me too much money
and I have had a good laugh most days.
I broke my sunglasses on my first day.It was the fault of the flies buzzing around my head.
I have been walking around a lot and swam in the sea most days.
It was cold but It gets the blood flowing.
My left foot is sore again and I will have to get it seen to when I get back to London.
I am listening to some eighties music on my iPod, feeling OK with life.
but also a little sad.
I would like to meet a pretty Spanish girl, or any girl to that matter.
The girls P. and I met last night in Gib were good fun and it made me think back to some fun times in Spain before my dad died and I became ill.
I liked the younger girl Lorena and so did Peter but he would not admit the fact.
He keeps his cards close to his chest.
The older girl from Romania was nice too, Josephine I think her name was.
I feel I made a bond with both of the girls but sadly they are both spoken for.
Lorena took my email address so who knows?
Friday and Saturday night on holiday I spent with Polish Pete, we went on the pull in the local Spanish square on the Friday night. The women we saw there in the last bar were extremely attractive and had a nice “shape.”
There didn't seem to be that many young men on the scene.
Sadly we didn't do much more then ogle the women all night.
Saturday was a very eventful day. We took a cable car up to the top of the rock and the views were amazing. It was a great fun observing all the monkeys too.
A Russian guy got bitten by a monkey but he didn't seem too concerned as he had a bottle of beer close at hand to blot out any pain. Another girl had to fight a monkey from stealing her expensive hand bag.
It was funny and dramatic at the same time, as the monkey was at the edge of the cliff at the time.
The evening started slowly but we stumbled upon a very interesting club / bar full of older English/Spanish women.
They told me that they were on a school reunion, 40th night out. We worked it out, that most of them must have been aged fifty, but they looked and danced very well. I don't think my dancing helped my injured foot however.
I forgot to mention Dan from Essex. I got chatting to him in a bar on the beach one day. We put the world to rights, slagged off the waiter and the poor service and talked about football. I was envious of Dan when he told me about his trip to watch England play in the World Cup in Mexico. He even met some of the players in their training camp, he told me. Now it is Monday morning and the weather is cooler today.
London will be much colder.

Wednesday, 25 September 2013

Learn 1,000 words in a new language

Learn 1,000 words in a new language urges campaign

Chinese dictionary  

Britain is losing out on international trade because of poor language skills, say campaigners

Everyone in the UK should learn at least 1,000 words of another language, urges a new campaign.

The 1,000 Words Campaign stems from concerns that the country is losing out on international trade and jobs because of poor language skills.

It aims to confront the view that only the brightest can learn a language.

"For too long people from the UK have suffered from a reputation that we are lazy linguists" said supporter Vicky Gough of the British Council.

Monday, 23 September 2013

Spurs fans continue chanting `YIDS`

Defiant Spurs supporters ignored the FA’s demands to stop using the word Yid by persistently singing it throughout yesterday’s match.
The team were playing away at Cardiff City and many fans started chanting the term as soon as they got off the train.
Around 40 minutes before the 4pm kick-off “We’re Tottenham Hotspur, we’ll sing what we want”, resounded around the stadium, followed by “Yid Army” and later “Yids, Yids, Yids”.
Most stood up for the whole game as they bellowed the songs. Barely five minutes passed between chants.
Fan Roger Maltz, 64, said: “I am Jewish. I remember the 1967 FA Cup final when I was attacked by skinhead yobs for being a ‘Yid’. For the past 10 or 15 years it has been used as a defence mechanism. We are just reclaiming our identity.”
Dave Beese, 55, and his son Adam, 26, also insisted: “The word is used in the right context. It’s entirely used in a positive manner. There isn’t a problem with this.”

Wednesday, 18 September 2013

Donegal Ireland by the sea

Where is the best place you have visited and why?

Some common verbs collocations

Some common verbs
have a bath
have a drink
have a good time
have a haircut
have a holiday
have a problem
have a relationship
have a rest
have lunch
have sympathy
do business
do nothing
do someone a favour
do the cooking
do the housework
do the shopping
do the washing up
do your best
do your hair
do your homework
make a difference
make a mess
make a mistake
make a noise
make an effort
make furniture
make money
make progress
make room
make trouble
take a break
take a chance
take a look
take a rest
take a seat
take a taxi
take an exam
take notes
take someone's place
take someone's temperature
break a habit
break a leg
break a promise
break a record
break a window
break someone's heart
break the ice
break the law
break the news to someone
break the rules
catch a ball
catch a bus
catch a chill
catch a cold
catch a thief
catch fire
catch sight of
catch someone's attention
catch someone's eye
catch the flu

Yes, David Cameron, 'Yid' really is a race-hate word. Here's why

Tuesday, 17 September 2013

Honest is the best policy

Honest is the best policy. In the long run you often get caught for being dishonest so it is better to always try to be honest.