contains mild peril

Tuesday, April 25, 2006

I'm a wreck

fuck mine.

we did it.


I'm still shaking with nerves. Thank god I wasn't drinking or I'd be a complete state.

I don't have a shred of nail on any finger. nothing. ripped raw. I'm still biting the fuckers.

My mate said "lucky fuckers". Can't argue with that. Not one shot on goal against their 5 or 6 good chances. and penalty. Funnily enough if anyone was gonna pull that off you'd reckon on Jens. but still.
We were nervous, playing defensively, scared of conceding more than they were. And tired. Henry wasn't running at the end, except for that break, Hleb was out on his feet. I reckon the game with spurs took it out of them physically and emotionally.
Anyway, sod that, c'mon 17th May....

c'mon Arsenal!!

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well, the Sol's come out

yep. Big night.
Villareal v Arsenal.
I'm so nervous I can't sit down.
god when will the tv coverage start...?

not drinking tonight as need to give the kidneys a rest and know that my nervousness would get me through too many...

cmon Arsenal!

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Thursday, April 20, 2006

clever clever smartarsedness...

I just made up a quote. aren't I the smartypants...
"In terms of deceiving with facts,
Quotes are as bad as statistics"
and (yes), you can quote me on that


Friday, April 07, 2006

My first time - I'm too old for this

OK another tale of Guatamalan travels.... to be honest I'm writing this a month after the fact but my notes are from the night it happened. Do you care? I wish my scanner worked as I'd just scan 'em. Can't even be arsed reading them again so here goes - an excercise (for me) in typing and for you in reading.

good luck.

"Saturday night after Semuc Champey and Grutas [something] Rey.
Helluva day. Before I start I'm writing this after the day, sitting in casa D'Acuna (again) and I reckon I've insulted the proprietor (again) by ordering Gallo rather than wine.
Anyway, expected to be on my own for this trip with maybe 1 other person (doddery pensioner knowing my luck). Instead got a nice guy and 2 US girls (Elaine + Vivian?). Then into the ineveitable shuttle minibus, full of people.
Before we reach our destination, the driver wonders whether we'd like to 'upgrade' caves we're visiting. Its the first good day in ages apparently.
We upgrade.
Good choice. Walked and swam through a cave complex, holding a candle for light. Any of you who know me may know I'm NOT a confident swimmer. Soon my candle was doused as I thrashed around. Not very manly. Its amazing that you can have any fun while scared and embarrassed.
Honestly - I was in the middle of a line of people swimming and treading water through these caves. Swimming I can kinda do but "treading water" is just a foreign language to me. Hence inapropriate splashing feet, swallowing of water and girly gasping while holding some crumbs of wax (the remnants of the candle). When we reach the 'end' and turn back to retrace our "steps" I head to the back of the line so I can 'swim' between rocky crags and ignore the idea of treading water. hanging onto these rocky outcrops cuts me arms a bit but do I give a monkey's? No. Well, not until a current (current?!? I'm in a cave!!) tries to take me under the outcrop and I get genuinely scared for a second (its a dark cave, I'm behind the group, "safety" is a word I'm unlikely to hear in Spanish).

After all this we emerge blinking and shivering into the light (though I am maniacally grinning as I'm still alive) and I begin to relax (ie my muscles are beginning to stop gripping themselves). From here we walk to a staging post and shed the umpteenth-hand trainers we put on to go into the caves (I've done this in size 9 trainers - I'm usually an 11) and cos I wasn't prepared (how come everyone else had flip flops?) I go barefoot to the "next bit". However, this is land and if its sharp stones I care not a shit - its land and I could fucking dance on this stuff!! Anyway, now we get into inner-tubes and float down the river. Fucking fantastic! I love it! Truly - its wonderful!! I'm giggling. After my obvious crapness in the cave this may sound odd but honestly its wonderful. While going down the river I learn that all US and Canadian kids do this in "summer camp" - "it ain't no big deal".

It is a fucking big deal.

They've forgotten what its like doing it the first time. And its beautiful- this is a truly beautiful river and area but as we'd been clambering though caves and shit none of us had our cameras so no pics I'm afraid. The closest I've got pics of are of Semuc Champey itself - hit the piccies on the right and look for those ones.

So, we float down to Semuc Champey proper. This is a series of torquoise pools which really are as beautiful as professional photographers can make them. If not more so. I wish I had me glasses on.
However this wasn't just a pleasant float or scenic end of the trip.

oh no.
Now we float/ swim this bit of the river from pool to pool which is a bit like going down the different levels of a canal (I guess) without the locks. and more beautiful. and no barges. How do I describe a river that's cut its way through a mainly limestone landscape leaving 'shelves' of harder stone along the way which contain these still, torquoise pools? Probably that's the best you'll get from me.
But this did mean for me, a bit of a gentle swim (although these pools are about 10-20ft deep and I don't "tread") and its quite a drop between each step or pool.
Hence my first ever jump from 14ft into water. The most I'd done before was jumping 2ft from the edge of the swimming pool in Stevenage.
Its a bit embarressing for me to have done so many "first" on the same day when I'm a 35 year old man. First time panicking in a dark cave that I'm swimming through. First time "tubing" down a river. First time "bombing" from a bit of a height. shit. 10 year olds discover this stuff and well they should.
Somehow I'm gonna make sure my niece learns how to swim.

and speak Spanish.


Sunday, April 02, 2006

social networkalising... while i do other things

Ripping these albums is taking ages.
While I've been doing it I've been listening to the new Candi Staton album (a housemate had it). Not very good I'm afraid.

Though Lastfm will now tell me about all my new friends who happen to be women between 30 and 40.

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dammit! - that's why my music was getting stale

Recently I've been getting bored of the music I had on my shuffle iPod and was surprised that it wasn't as varied as I'd thought my tastes were.

The tonight it struck me when I thought - "That's odd; Paris Texas never comes on my iPod..."
So I checked and found I hadn't put it on. duh!
Now, I knew that I'd never got round to putting a few of my albums on my computer but I thought it was mainly the jazz stuff and some of the more ropey compilations and stuff that kind of turns up in one's collection like barnacles.

Well, I've just found forty albums that I haven't put on my computer. and that was without looking hard.


And they're not ropey. They're not even the jazz albums. No, this is stuff like:
Pixies - Surfer Rosa and Doolittle; Smashing Pumpkins - Siamese Dream; Buffalo Tom - Birdbrain; The The - Mind Bomb; Blur - Parklife; Pulp - This is Hardcore; Billy fucking Bragg for christs sake (how the hell had i not spotted him not being played??);
And this ain't mentioning stuff like the Fatima Mansions, Gallon Drunk, Willie Nelson, Hank Williams, Sex Pistols and collections of James Bond, Sly and the Family Stone and James Brown. I'll ignore the fact that i didn't put Elvis Presley and an opera collection on.

Ok, I can see that this would have been the end of the stuff that I wouldv'e put on my computer when it was new a year ago, and that it would've taken ages (and shit - I've only had browdband for a few months, and I'm not typing track names!)

so, I see how it happened but still, this is good stuff I've been missing out on....

awww just spotted Dr. John - Gris Gris and Pet sounds and New York by Lou Reed... and the Mars Volta!

actually that's less of a surprise that I hadn't put it on.....