Monthly Archives: November 2006

Six Degrees

Yet more preposterously indirect namedrops.
I trained someone last week who was an extra in Barbra Streisand‘s film Yentl and was also a team member in Top of the Form.
I was standing within a few feet of Home Secretary John Reid yesterday. He was only an inch tall.
A guy I know at the gym told me in the steamroom the other day that he was once in a boyband that supported Blue.

Lee from Blue

The Other Bollinger

Bollinger of Cricklewood
Bollinger has a namesake in London. The ‘other’ Bollinger is a 14-year-old Abyssinian who also likes snoozing upside down and gets on well with dogs. He even has his own Blog. Thank you to his human for getting in touch.

Cawthorne Cooksey

Cawthorne Cooksey sounds like a village in the Cotswolds, but it is in fact a type of exercise to help stop dizziness.
As you may know, my brain decided to switch off its mission control for balance last year (cerebellar infarcts affecting my vestibular system – to use the proper terminology) so my eyes do nearly all the work when it comes to keeping upright. As soon as I shut them, I’m swimming around in zero gravity and tend to fall over.
What I now have to do, using my Cawthorne Cookseys, is force the symptoms by standing and moving in ways which challenge my balance, and that’s supposed to help my brain adapt and get its act together again. It does seem to be working, if a bit slowly, so I’d highly recommend the technique.

Bolly’s Weird Week

Bollinger’s had a very odd week. She sprained her elbow on Monday and had to have an anti-inflammatory injection.
The injection then made her sick. So she had to go on a 24-hour starvation diet.
Now she’s on a chicken-only diet for a day or two. She’s still limping slightly, but seems perfectly happy now she can eat again.

1:11 2:22 3:33 4:44 5:55

My Dad told me the other day other that he often wakes up in the night to find the time on the bedside clock reads 1:11, 2:22, 3:33, 4:44, 5:55 and so on. Weird – because that also happens to me and happened several times last night.
The question is, of course: do I really wake up at those times in particular, or do I just notice and remember those times rather than others? I suspect the latter may be true.
But it seems Dad and I aren’t alone. There are some interesting discussions of this apparent phenomenon on the internet and one or two quite spooky stories too.
I’m intrigued by the notion that these numbers are connected to guardian angels, as I once had a session with an angel therapist (for a BBC programme) and was told that my guardian angel was standing behind me. I’m not prone to be affected by such things (quite the opposite), but I did feel a very strange physical tingle at the time and still get it whenever I think about the experience or the idea of having a guardian spirit.
There’s even a book about the 11:11 angel connection, by George Barnard, who was apparently contacted by some 11:11 angels. He claims they spoke to him in French, saying: ‘Nous sommes les Mille-Cent-et-Onze Esprits Gardiens …’
‘We are the One-Thousand-One-Hundred-and-Eleven Spirit Guardians. The name of our number, the number of our name. We share your space, not your time.’
By the way, if you haven’t read it, Miss Garnet’s Angel is an excellent angel-related novel, set in Venice.
Don’t worry – I haven’t gone mad. I just find angels interesting.

Cat Logic

I put a box file on my bed earlier while I was tidying my bedroom. And where did Bollinger decide to have a nap? On the nice cosy duvet? No. On the box file.

Garrulous Gooses

Hertford is full of geese and my house is on the goose flightpath. I like seeing them fly over. But why do they talk to each other non-stop while they’re flying? What are they actually talking about?


It’s frosty this morning. What a relief. This is the correct weather for England.

Six Degrees

Some new ludicrously indirect namedrops…
My friend Danny has danced on stage with Kylie Minogue.
My friend Paul’s ex’s parents once bought a house from The Crankies.
My friend Frank saw Paul Martin from Flog It! the other day in a multi-storey carpark.

Friend’s Website – Laurence

Scene from Lommeoraklet – Pocket Oracle

My friend Laurence Kaye has an excellent new website

Laurence is a composer and musician. He lives in Århus, Denmark, but spends a lot of time in the UK and has worked everywhere from Nashville to Okinawa.

You can hear some of his music on the site. He’s had some brilliant reviews. The Guardian gave a four star rating to his ‘Beginner’s Guide to Cybershopping’:

‘It features a frenetic, mock gospel score. Imagine hitting F1 for help and having a well-drilled ensemble whisk you through the process in a series of deftly executed musical numbers.’ ****

‘Avin’ A Bobble

A new dictionary of cockney rhyming slang – Shame About the Boatrace – lists some new terms invented by the celeb-obsessed Heat generation.
My favourites:
Ayrton Senna – tenner
Britney Spears – beers
Paul Weller – Stella
Basil Fawlty – Balti
Tony Blairs – flares
Billie Pipers – windscreen wipers
Brad Pitt – fit
I won’t bother explaining a Melvyn Bragg or a James Blunt.
I’d love to be immortalised by rhyming slang, but I can’t think of anything that rhymes with Peacock – apart from a small chicken which would be a wee cock.
There’s scope for my cat Bolly, as her name rhymes with wally and so on. But I’m at a loss when it comes to friends and acquaintances, who include: Alyal, Paczek, Tversted, Srinivasan and Darukhanawala.
My favourite all-time rhyming slang is ‘bobble’, as in: ‘You’re ‘avin’ a bobble, mate!’
Bobble = bobble hat and scarf = larf
I’d like to suggest a new celeb one, which – rather like the Brad Pitt example – has a nice synergy between the person and the concept:
Jade Goody – hoodie