Category Archives: Global interest

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 “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.

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!!)

Baked Ziti

Well, here’s the recipe:

  • Preheat the oven to 375 degrees
  • Boil 1/2 a box of ziti in water in a saucepan for 15 minutes or so.
  • Drain it really well.
  • Put in a large glass casserole – a rectangular one is good.
  • Add about a cup and a half of tomato sauce – or some of that new-fangled pasta sauce in a jar – oo
  • Sprinkle on some garlic powder, and some herbs if you like them
  • Add Ricotta cheese – about a cup (that’s 8 ounces Doris)
  • Mix it all up with a fork, making sure there are no lumps of ricotta left hanging about in there.
  • Cover the top with as much shredded cheese as you can stand (that’s quite a bit isn’t it Doris? – don’t get carried away).
  • Pop it in the oven and leave it there (shut the door on the oven) for about 30 minutes or until the cheese on top is golden brown (not dark brown)

(you can go off and have a read for a bit – you don’t have to watch it cook)

  • Put on the stylish oven mitt(s) and take that baby out of there.
  • Turn off the oven – we don’t always remember this , but we should – global warming being what it is….
  • It’ll be hot at this point if you did it right… be careful when you cut it up.
  •  Eat it, or if it looks a bit suspect, mail it to a friend. :O

Exotic variations for this:

Add frozen peas or corn or beans to the pasta when you boil it.
Add chopped onions when you add the ricotta
Sprinkle parmesan over the top

Shoe Bees

Traveling  along the highways of the world, it’s difficult not to notice the strange detritus. Among the bizarre offerings are frequent single items of footwear. A lone shoe, or sometimes a boot!

How do they get there? ….. And how have they been separated from their mates?

Well, it’s shoe bees that cause this.Bee

Some poor motorist is driving along, barely keeping to the speed limit (gasp) and a shoe bee gets in their shoe. And if they are stuck in the passing lane, what can they do?

It’s really terrifying… the poor guy (we’ll call him Frank) reaches down and removes the shoe. Now Frank is really stuck – the bee is still in his shoe. Frank’s no fool – he quickly opens the window on his truck and flings the shoe, and resident bee, onto the verge.

This raises a new and more disturbing question? Boot bees – are they related?