Monthly Archives: July 2005

Breaking Peacock News

A new occasional feature, rounding up the latest pavonine news stories from around the world.
Peacock Gets It In Neck
The hapless residents of a Detroit suburb are desperately trying to catch a peacock with an arrow stuck in its neck. It seems perfectly happy and is eating, drinking and making its usual noises. But vets hope to remove the arrow if the peripatetic peafowl can be caught, as it could cause problems later in life. Full story with photo
Peacock Peeves PM
According to The Hindu newspaper, India’s PM Manmohan Singh was holding a photoshoot in his grounds when a peacock stole the show by ‘dancing’ on the lawn. Press photographers were distracted by the peacock and by a cat which was watching the dance with rapt attention. In the end, a junior police officer was drafted in to chase the peacock and its fascinated feline fan off the premises.
Hotdog Hampers Peacock’s Progress
A peacock running amok in the New England town of Newton has finally been caught by a local woman who tempted it into her house with a hotdog. She then put it in a cat box. Animal wardens in the area have recently received reports of: a rampaging giant hog, a porcupine attacking a car tire, a duck walking into a house, a skunk with an ice cream carton on its head, a killer mockingbird, and a python that turned out to be a garden hose.
Watch this space for more breaking peacock stories…

Not Just Another Brick In The Wall

This is the wall of a derelict but charming Victorian school near my house. It’s a protected building because of the wall. Can you work out why? I’ll reveal the answer in a few days.

112 On Thin Ice

It was a hoax. Like me, you probably got the email saying you could phone 112 on your mobile on the London Underground and get through to 999. Not true. Mobiles don’t work on the underground parts of the Tube. But 112 does get you through to 999 and its equivalents wherever you are in Europe, providing you already have a signal. As for typing the acronym ICE (In Case of Emergency) into your mobile and adding a number for the emergency services to call (a friend or family member), that’s a genuine campaign. You can even have several ICES. Excellent idea.
BBC Report on 112

Honorary Marsupial Of The Month – July

Apologies for the late arrival of this month’s marsupial. It’s the Southdown Sheep. This particular one lives in Colchester Zoo. It looks stuffed, but I assure you it’s alive. They’re very small and very sweet, but sadly quite rare. Requests are flooding in for the August marsupial. Sadly, I can’t really include the hugely-popular binturong, as it’s strictly a viveridae and I feel it’s time to return to true marsupials.

8 out of 10 Cats Don’t Prefer Puddings

A new scientific study has revealed the astonishing fact that…cats don’t have a sweet tooth. If you have a cat, you’ll have realised this. Cats are utterly indifferent to puddings. The reason for this is a faulty feline gene which means they have no sweetness receptors on their tongues.
Full CNN report

Chav Jokes

OK. Chavs are a bit 2004. But they still exist (and can be sighted even in genteel Hertford, on the MacDonalds-Greggs chav leyline that is Maidenhead Street). Here are some of my favourite chav jokes:
Q. What do you call a chav in a bank vault?
A. Safe.
Q. What do you call a chav in a filing cabinet?
A. Sorted.
Q. What do you call a chav in a box?
A. Innit.
Q. What do you call a chav in a white tracksuit?
A. All White.
Q. What do you call an Eskimo Chav?
A. Innuinnit.
Q. Why are Chavs like slinkies?
A. They have no real use but it’s great to watch one fall down a flight of stairs.
Q. What do you call a Chavette in a white tracksuit?
A. The bride.
Q. If you see a Chav on a bike, why should you try not to hit him?
A. It might be your bike.
Q. How do you get 100 Chavs into a phone box?
A. Paint three stripes on it.
Q. Two Chavs in a car without any loud music. Who’s driving?
A. The police.
Chav Article for Wikillectuals

Are you Posh? Or A Chav?

Test Yourself and find out whether you’re posh, a chav, or whatever. I had a go and I’m 43% posh and 18% a chav.

Tchaikovsky’s Head

I’m having some balance problems at the moment, thanks to the antibiotics. And I’ve discovered that the best solution is to keep my head completely still. Tchaikovsky would have approved. When he was conducting, he used to hold his chin constantly, as he was convinced his head would fall off.

Carpe Diem

Here are some Buddhist quotations I came across in a book:
Let us try to recognise the precious nature of each day.
Do not encumber your mind with useless thoughts. What good does it do to brood on the past or anticipate the future? Remain in the simplicity of the present moment.
We do not become angry with the stick that hits us, but with the one who wields the stick. But the one who wields the stick is impelled by hatred, so what we should truly hate is hatred itself.
There is nothing clever about not being happy.
From Buddhist Offerings 365 Days Thames and Hudson