Happy New Year :)

Right, look lively you there.                        What’s your name? – 2012?

OK then – listen up!

There will be none of the utter nonsense we had with that last one – number 2011 or some such drivvle… This year there will be no blindsides, no “sucker punches”, and no taking out at the knees.

I want a fair fight, with the usual Queensbury rules applying.


Domestic Taxi Service Provider, unpaid

Revised Taxi Drivers’ Code

Part II : Domestic Taxi Service Provider, unpaid – to be known as “The New Code”.

  Test assumes minivan is preferred transport.

  (Licenses to be Class A – Minivan-certified, and B – Other)

2.00.1      All domestic taxi driver applicants must undergo 9 months of training before the Domestic part of the test.

2.00.2      Approved manual labour or psychological conditioning may be substituted at the examiner’s discretion. (Certification of Idiocy or similar by a licensed professional is also an automatic qualify.)

2.00.3      Discharge of passengers at government facilities – Mandatory compliance. Test in all weather conditions, and sleep-deprived.

2.00.4      Closely inspect driver-trainee for performance in long queues of traffic awaiting discharge at one or more of the following:

Sports events; after-school activities; the close confines of unfamiliar non-public driveway configurations.

2.00.5      Test for road rage, with and without random quantities and mixes of:

Minor passengers from within and outside of the habitual family group; dogs; babies with plumbing “issues”.

2.00.6      The Speed test. Check for exit speed after the school bus has gone, without and then with backpack-loading.

2.10.0      During Phase II Driving Exam.

(Drivers must exhibit effects, including wear-and-tear, of at least 16 years of driving under previous conditions)

2.10.1      Test level of service and quality of language when driver is performing the 4am unexpected pick-up manoeuvre. This portion to be supervised by a senior examiner capable of administering caffeine (The hearing-impaired are encouraged to apply)  Place close attention to footwear for this portion of the test – fuzzy slippers are an automatic disqualify. Examiners should be aware that applicants may be looking for the automatic disqualification in Phase II.

NOTE: Administration of this test is for data-collection purposes only and passing does not imply fitness for anything.  And NO, we are not there yet!

Hand-sensing soap dispenser – get real!

If you are going to the trouble of using antibacterial soap, why do you need a soap dispenser that senses your hands so you don’t need to touch it?

Surely, if there are germs on the dispenser, they will be gone once you have washed your hands.

I, for one, cannot ever remember going back to touch the dispenser AFTER I have used the soap….

Maybe the manufacturer of the hand-sensing dispenser needs more confidence in their soap, not a fancier dispenser??

More problems with the post!

I would suggest that, rather than keep increasing the cost of stamps, the Post Office might save on delivery costs by delivering everything to the first house on each road.Chat with government about this

The people in the first house could just take out their own items and send everyone else’s cards and letters next door. This would encourage neighbours to speak to each other and all the junk mail could go in a bin at the other end. House prices would have to be adjusted to make up for the added inconvenience of the things left at your location but everyone would know each other much better. 🙂

But… they have already started this apparently… and there are some flaws in the new plan.

I am happy to send mail delivered to me to the next house up – It is only fair as my other neighbour is bringing me all the mail of mine that he receives.

2 doors up they moved out months ago.  Delivering there is the weak link in the chain and immediately highlights why this new system is doomed…

We will just have to go back to delivering according to the super-duper, high-technology  sorted, postal code or zip code system that I thought they used anyway….Or, start training our own pigeons.

Flu Pandemic 2009 – A Panic-demic

 A pandemic is a disease spread over a large geographic area. That would include lots of things that I’m not seeing a google-earth map for: like drinking and driving, rudeness and obesity (which I believe we used to call being really fat when I was young and not really fat at all.) We get flu seasons every year. They like to label it, and this year it’s labeled “Swine flu” and suddenly there seems to be a panic. Animals are being slaughtered, trade is affected and a lot of public spending and meetings are happening………WHY????

We aren’t getting it from pigs and the food supply is as safe as normal (not sure that is reassuring, but …Doris and I are vegetarians so it’s your own fault if you don’t cook properly 😛  )

According to flufacts.com “In the U.S., an estimated 25–50 million cases of the flu are currently reported each year — leading to 150,000 hospitalizations and 30,000–40,000 deaths yearly. If these figures were to be estimated incorporating the rest of the world, there would be an average of approximately 1 billion cases of flu, around 3–5 million cases of severe illness, and 300,000–500,000 deaths annually”

So, the few deaths we have seen attributed to this year’s version are probably par for the course. Obviously they are traumatic for the people affected, but its not something that would warrant the incredible publicity so far.

Schools are sending home notices about keeping your house clean and using a tissue when you sneeze – What the heck do these people do normally? Wipe their nose on a student??

So, if you get the flu this year – eat properly, behave in a sociable way and don’t give it to anyone you know. If you feel really bad, your doctor will I am sure be thrilled to hear from you – don’t forget to ask if it’s the swine flu. The statistics people will want to know.

Problems with the post.

Harrold’s Christmas present finally arrived on February 28th. I thought I had had a senior moment, and had forgotten where I had hidden it over the Christmas season…

It was a bit startling to see that the ” USPS Priority” delivery had been sent out on December 14th!

Even more startling was the standard red ink stamp put on the label (twice) as some kind of explanation of why priority delivery over 400 miles had taken the Post Office two and a half months- “Found in supposedly empty equipment“.

  • Why does this happen so often that they need a red stamp for it?

Something historical…

Resolutions of the Stamp Act Congress

The members of this Congress, sincerely devoted, with the warmest sentiments of affection and duty to His Majesty’s Person and Government, inviolably attached to the present happy establishment of the Protestant succession, and with minds deeply impressed by a sense of the present and impending misfortunes of the British colonies on this continent; having considered as maturely as time will permit the circumstances of the said colonies, esteem it our indispensable duty to make the following declarations of our humble opinion, respecting the most essential rights and liberties Of the colonists, and of the grievances under which they labour, by reason of several late Acts of Parliament.

That His Majesty’s subjects in these colonies, owe the same allegiance to the Crown of Great-Britain, that is owing from his subjects born within the realm, and all due subordination to that august body the Parliament of Great Britain.

That His Majesty’s liege subjects in these colonies, are entitled to all the inherent rights and liberties of his natural born subjects within the kingdom of Great-Britain.

That it is inseparably essential to the freedom of a people, and the undoubted right of Englishmen, that no taxes be imposed on them, but with their own consent, given personally, or by their representatives.
That the people of these colonies are not, and from their local circumstances cannot be, represented in the House of Commons in Great-Britain.

That the only representatives of the people of these colonies, are persons chosen therein by themselves, and that no taxes ever have been, or can be constitutionally imposed on them, but by their respective legislatures.

That all supplies to the Crown, being free gifts of the people, it is unreasonable and inconsistent with the principles and spirit of the British Constitution, for the people of Great-Britain to grant to His Majesty the property of the colonists.

That trial by jury is the inherent and invaluable right of every British subject in these colonies.

That the late Act of Parliament, entitled, An Act for granting and applying certain Stamp Duties, and other Duties, in the British colonies and plantations in America, etc., by imposing taxes on the inhabitants of these colonies, and the said Act, and several other Acts, by extending the jurisdiction of the courts of Admiralty beyond its ancient limits, have a manifest tendency to subvert the rights and liberties of the colonists.

That the duties imposed by several late Acts of Parliament, from the peculiar circumstances of these colonies, will be extremely burthensome and grievous; and from the scarcity of specie, the payment of them absolutely impracticable.

That as the profits of the trade of these colonies ultimately center in Great-Britain, to pay for the manufactures which they are obliged to take from thence, they eventually contribute very largely to all supplies granted there to the Crown.

That the restrictions imposed by several late Acts of Parliament, on the trade of these colonies, will render them unable to purchase the manufactures of Great-Britain.

That the increase, prosperity, and happiness of these colonies, depend on the full and free enjoyment of their rights and liberties, and an intercourse with Great-Britain mutually affectionate and advantageous.

Lastly, That it is the indispensable duty of these colonies, to the best of sovereigns, to the mother country, and to themselves, to endeavour by a loyal and dutiful address to his Majesty, and humble applications to both Houses of Parliament, to procure the repeal of the Act for granting and applying certain stamp duties, of all clauses of any other Acts of Parliament, whereby the jurisdiction of the Admiralty is extended as aforesaid, and of the other late Acts for the restriction of American commerce.

(this bit is not actually by Ethel at all!!)

Introducing ….. Aggie!!

It is my great pleasure and honour to introduce a very close friend of mine and of Doris’ – Aggie.

She is knowledgeable on many (many)  subjects and I’m sure she will add to the rich tapestry of what is known as “Doris and Ethel” (but is really a blog). So get yourselves a nice cup of coffee and maybe one of those nice biscuits and prepare to be amazed.

Take it away Aggie!

Spandex – the answers.

After many minutes of intense research I think we have the answers about Spandex.

Looking at some of the pictures about spandex, I would think it would be OK for looking good while you are fighting crime (it comes in some nice colours and patterns too), but I don’t think the policemen should start wearing it…. well, most of them anyway (I was thinking more of superheroes actually).

You really shouldn’t wear this stuff unless you are very fit and at a private gym. This makes you think – if you are really fit, why are you wasting your money on a gym in the first place?

It’s called spandex because it ex-pands – someone couldn’t spell when they came up with this brilliance! I expect they shied away from calling it pandsex because … well…. it would be wrong. Elastane is not very attractive either. But neither is driving behind someone who can’t afford the private gym and is cycling in those “bike shorts”. You know who you are – Stop It!

There were a lot of nasty words in the technical stuff about this spandex. The sort of words you might associate with the ingredient lists for food you know isn’t doing you any good. So probably it’s not good to eat it either.

They have been using it instead of rubber because it stretches 500 times longer. Don’t test this with your undies elastic because if they are wrong you won’t have any to wear! ..and they do say that rubber is stronger.

Thanks for asking.