Thursday, 3 January 2019

My addiction to white powder

It's the start of the New Year and the traditional time for new beginnings. As such I want to use this blog to come clean, to make a confession: I have been an addict for most of my life - it started way back at school. I developed an addiction to a harmful substance that is regularly digested as a white powder but more commonly taken neat in crystal form. 

My addiction has taken its toll and has affected my health so badly that I developed a “chronic illness” and I’m now dependent on full-time medication. 

Tuesday, 25 December 2018

A Christmas Parable

When I was a young lad, around 5 years old, I kept mice. I bought two mice, Mork and Mindy and a couple of weeks later I had 8 mice, then two weeks after that I had 16. I discovered a local pet shop that would buy the mice off me for 50p each, so I had a lucrative business for kid. I assumed the pet shop found good homes for the baby mice, but I now realise that they were probably reptile food.

Anyhow I loved my original two mice. I would run home from school each day to play with my little rodent chums. I would dress them up and put them in little Lego cars that I built for them. And at Christmas they would don tiny Santa hats. 

Monday, 17 December 2018

The common commuter types

These days I travel less and less in and out of London. I really don't miss the daily grind on the crowded 8.10 train and unbearable underground. Less commuting is better for health, welfare and sanity. 

Over the years I have noticed the following anti-social, unaffable common commuter types:

Monday, 12 November 2018

We want plates

I like going to pubs, I like going to restaurants, I like nice food, good wholesome comfort food, but I’m not a fan of your fancy food, your nouveau cuisine and I am particularly not a fan of pubs and restaurants that don’t serve their food on plates. 

We’ve all been there - cheese on a slate, chips in a little metal basket, sandwiches on a bread board, macaroni cheese in a pint jug, soup in a tea pot, noodles in a stiletto. Just stop it, stop it now. The plate has been meticulously designed over eons to carry food, be completely cleanable and easily stacked. Anything else is just puerile and pretentious.

Monday, 15 October 2018

Save the Great British pub

I love beer and pubs and beer. And let's not forget my love of beer. 
Pubs are the fundamental element of the foundation of our society. We invented the pub and the traditional pub is one of the things that distinguishes us from the rest of the world, with their lame so-called bars, saloons and cantinas.

But recently I have become disenfranchised with many British pubs. Basically because their focus has shifted from beer to food - some even call themselves, dare I say it, "gastro-pubs". 

So landlords here is my hierarchy of needs (my 10 commandments) for the perfect pub:

Tuesday, 6 February 2018

Spank It! Eat Dirt!

 It was the 1990s, I was in my 30s, slender, svelte and super fit, an athlete in his prime. My team had just been knocked out of the Volleyball championships in Brugge and I was having an early shower. A little soap went in my eyes, so I closed them and rinsed. When I gingerly opened them, I realised I was standing next to this 6ft 6, broad, hairy, German ... girl!

She just stood there smiling and continued lathering up, as did the rest of her equally huge team mates. Apparently, the girls’ showers were busy and this busty young lady and her fellow feisty fräuleins were more than happy to share a shower.

Monday, 24 July 2017

Thank you, thank you

I am honoured to be awarded this small but significant medal (the Napier Shaw Bronze medal) for the best paper published in the CIBSE’s Building Services Engineering Research and Technology journal (BSERT). However, I would rather not focus on the technical aspects of the paper as I'm not at all convinced that my report on why we should not use panels of trained sniffers to assess air quality in offices is of wide appeal.

I would rather focus on how I came to write a paper at all. And I'm hoping my story will inspire you all to try something new, to achieve a distant dream and to unlock your hidden potential.