Monday, February 28, 2005

The Silver Vixen went off to stretch herself out in front of various strangers at the gym. She enjoys her Pilates sessions as they keep her back in tune.

Gorse Fox phone Barney Rubble to wish him a happy birthday for tomorrow. He has been busy demolishing a chimney, but was have a quiet evening. He's looking forward to meeting up with GF+SV in Tenerife in the near future.

Seconds out...

Well Esteemed Client's contract trolls have come back with further requested amendments, which Gorse fox duly handled before his brief vacation last week. In his absence his own project contract trolls have decided that they can't accept what the EC's project contract trolls want.

If the Gf wasn't so cool he could lose his equanimity!!! Do all government contracts have this problem?

Sunday, February 27, 2005

Contrasts

What a day of contrasts. Cousteau-cub called in the morning to say they had had a couple of inches of snow. We were seeing the odd flake, but there was no real threat. Urban-cub also phoned and said that football had been cancelled in the Lewes area.

As the day progressed, we saw clouds marching across the skies punctuated by bright sunshine. The clouds occasionally threatened a few snowflakes, occasionally dumped snow, then again then sun would burst through and everything would clear in minutes. As the GF sits watching the Carling Cup Final, in brilliant sunshine, he reflects that 10 minutes ago he couldn't see the end of the garden through the snow, and teh temperature outside plummeted 4C in the space of a few minutes.

Not much more than 5 minutes later the Gorse Fox was walking in sunshine again, passing this lovely Sussex cottage in East Preston. Posted by Hello

Just a few minutes later the sea cabbages (or whatever they are) looked as if they were in bloom with their spray coating of snow. (At least visibility had improved, and the Gorse Fox could see the sea again). Posted by Hello

Gorse Fox headed out along the beach for a walk. He walked westwards, thinking how lucky this coastal strip is. The sun was blazing along the coast whilst inland half a mile away the skies were dark and ominous. Luck ran out! Within 5 minutes of these thoughts the weather closed in and snow was driven across the route. This photo shows the local flora sculpted by the prevailing south-westerlies, but in this case the snow is being driven from a north-easterly direction. Posted by Hello

Saturday, February 26, 2005

Mobile Engineering

The Gorse Fox went shopping with the Silver Vixen to Worthing. She had sewing stuff to sort, the GF needed some new walking boots, and so they split up relying on their mobile phones to re-establish contact when needed.

The Gorse Fox headed to Millets to look at their boots. Berghuas, Brasher, Karrimoor, Hi-Tec were all there. Berghaus were the first choice, but once the GF had tried them on he realised they were not suitable, absolutely no give in the soles, and quite high on the leg. He would have been walking round in a Frankenstein-like gait... now he's not elegant at the best of times, but there's no reason to exagerate it !!! Eventually a pair of Karrimoors bubbled to the top of the list but GF decided to check various other stores first.

Leaving the store the mobile phone rang... and rang... and rang. Press the keys as he did, nothing happened. The screen revelead that the Silver Vixen was calling, but GF could do nothing. Whilst trying on the boots he had dropped the phone and obviously damaged it. The phone stopped ringing.

Hoping that the Silver Vixen would make her way to the centre of town, GF waited in the middle of the walkway. The phone started to ring again. Again it was the Silver Vixen. Again the keyboard would not respond. GF thought he'd use a call box, but realised he couldn't remember the number... so just had to wait and hope.

Sure enough she turned up, and problem was explained. Together they returned to Millets and decided to buy the chosen boots. The young assistant heard us talking about the phone and promptly took the phone from the GF and fiddled about for a moment and fixed it in a trice. It's moments like that that make you feel old.

Friday, February 25, 2005


The wintery sky reflected in the calm of Brighton Marina. Posted by Hello

From the Devil's Dyke the Silver Vixen and Gorse Fox headed for Brighton Marina. In preparation for the forthcoming trip to tenerife they stopped at El Patio (Tapas Bar / restaurant) which is one of their favourites. Posted by Hello

The Devil's Dyke itself. A few vestiges of some overnight snow nestling in the grass, and a couple of nutters walking their dogs in the chilled air. Posted by Hello

Gorse Fox and Silver Vixen went for a drive and took a detour along to Devil's Dyke. This is the rather wintery view, through the haze along the Downs, westwards. Posted by Hello

Whither Whiter Weather?

Again last night's forecast was forecasting blizzard conditions across Surrey, Sussex and Kent. The Gorse Fox has awoken, patrolled the house, looked out every window and is presented with brilliant sunshine, green grass and a blue sky. What a splendid micro-climate we seem to experience here.

Today is another day's vacation for the GF. No plans yet... just see how things pan out.

attempting escape: A Foul Calumny

attempting escape: A Foul Calumny. Some interesting clips from the parliamentary debate on the Prevention of Terrorism Bill.
What dangerous times we live in when our power-hungry government can erode our liberties with such arrogance.

Thursday, February 24, 2005

The Anglo Saxon Chronicle: Vote yes for the EURO

The Anglo Saxon Chronicle: Vote yes for the EURO. I picked this up a few days ago, but forget to make a note of it.
Surely our honourable government wouldn't be preparing to deceive us?

Arundel

A nice day's vacation for the Gorse Fox. GF and SV went into Arundel as the weather, though chilly was still not too bad. Spent a while reviewing GPS systems at Peglars, but couldn't decide whether it was good value... so decided to do some more virtual window shopping first.

Stopped off at the Tudor Cafe in the High Street for a bite to eat, and sat in the window watching the world go by stand still. The one thing that struck the GF was that in the time that they were there... nothing happened. One or two cars went up the hill; one or two cam down the hill. An old man crossed the road, stopping the traffic by doing so. How did he know to cross at just the moment that a car was actually on the hill? I gess it left the Gorse Fox with a view of Genteel living. (Though in the summer it's heaving with tourists).

This is a log blog. A quiet day's vacation for the Gorse Fox... started with the shifting of a pile of logs to the back of the house before the forecast bad weather set in. Posted by Hello

Wednesday, February 23, 2005

The Log Man Cometh

The Gorse Fox and Silver Vixen are consuming a lot of logs in the fire. Again the log pile has run low. The Silver Vixen called our local log man, only to find that he too had run out. He was looking for a further source, and would call us when he had secured a supply.

Today he called. he has a new supply, and has just delivered a load for us.
Well the forecast overnight snow, again failed to materialize. There was a slight frost, but tat soon disappeared. Now let's get this right, the Gorse Fox is not raising a murmur of complaint... merely making an observation. Gorse Fox believes if we were meant to live in snowy climes we would have long narrow flat feet with curled up toes, masses of bodily hair, and hands with a thumb and single set of four conjoined fingers to fit properly into mittens.

Very busy and interesting morning... if you are the Gorse Fox or his Esteemed Client. If you aren't then it was immensely boring and probably of no interest. However, the Gf found out that the long awaited contract signature was forthcoming overnight. However, it was on a temporary authority, not the full one. So the contract is about to suffer another round of ping pong. GF has already made the suggested changes and sent them on to the trolls. Let's see how long it takes.

Tuesday, February 22, 2005

Schadenfreude

To heighten the celebration of the Gorse Fox's birthday he should point out several notable items:
  • GF received an email from his Cousin Sparky (who is married to the Time-Bandit and lives in Toronto). It was very nice of her to remember.
  • GF received an email from his beloved Aunt in Toronto. It is always a pleasure to talk or exchange email with her... and hopefully we will see her this year as she has been debating a UK trip.
  • And in keeping with the title of this post, the Forces of Darkness were trounced 3-1 by Bayern Munich last night.
    Sir Lancinglot commented "You should always support the English Team in European games.".
    The Gorse Fox pointed out that there was not a single English player on the team (they were probably still in decompression chambers after their last outings).
    The Gorse Fox thanks the Forces of Darkness for losing, and so making his Birthday complete.

The Gorse Fox took this in Whitehall before a meeting with Esteemed Client. Posted by Hello

Icing sugar

Woke up to a light dusting of snow. It looked as if someone had been out with a shaker full of icing sugar. Soon started to snow again, but it wasn't settling, and all traces had soon disappeared.

The Silver Vixen had given a fair deal of thought to the GF's birthday, and been saving up for a while to contribute to the purchase of a GPS. GF suspects she is glad that he likes going on long walks, but is concerened that he can find his way back! Now, the GF just has to find a suitable GPS device.

Cousteau-cub and Urban-cub are going to chip in to get GF some more tickets to go up to Spurs. However, with C-c's duty rosta, U-c's bad back, and GF+SV's impending vacation, this may have to wait a little while.

Monday, February 21, 2005

Snow

Cousteau-cub came across from Brighton to spend the evening with us. Whilst waiting at the station for her arrival, GF observed a fashion victim. Young schoolgirl waiting by the station, almost blue with cold and shivering... wearing short skirt and white blouse, but would rather shiver than put on the thick coat she had draped over her arm. Go Figure.

GF was just on the phone to Esteemed Client at Worcester. They are already getting some snow. GF gloated that the sun was still shining on the South Coast... put the phone down, and went to tell the Silver Vixen and Cousteau-cub. On returning to his study he observed that the snow had started here. That was a short gloat !!! Having said that, by the time the GF had written this post, the snow had stopped again (though the sun hasn't re-appeared), so gloat mode is re-enabled.

Cruz

So the Beckams have called their 3rd son Cruz (Spanish for Cross). Of couse David Beckham is famous for his crosses, and despite public reaction to the name it could be worse. He might have named him Penalty, or Free-kick.

52.99726 and counting

Time's nearly up on another year for the Gorse Fox.

Monday saw the GF working from home with a wide variety of reports and reviews to complete, ranging from the geographical "spatial" systems to export systems. An interesting calvalcade of problems and opportunities to consider and review.

Shadow called to confirm that signature was NOT forthcoming on project last week. The GF is glad that he was not holding his breath).

Despite forecast, sun is shining on the South coast, and it's not too cold. Latest estimate is that snow will hit Tuesday and Friday. Hey, ho!

Sunday, February 20, 2005


Smuggler's Cottage in Ferring. Note that one of the features of flint walls here in Sussex is that they are not random, but rather the flints are laid in ordered rows. Posted by Hello

Just after taking this photo, the Gorse Fox was tucking the camera away when an elderly woman stopped him and said "That's rather small, isn't it?"
The Gorse Fox stopped. Checked his trousers were done up, thinking, "Well it is rather cold, but that's a very personal remark for and elderly lady", and the realised she was referring to the camera.

Some typical Sussex cottages on the edge of Ferring. Posted by Hello

The lichen covering this tree positively glowed in the early afternoon sun. Posted by Hello

The stark silhouette of the groyne emphasizes the almost deserted beach. Cloud had bubbled up from the bright blue morning, and by the end of the GF's walk it was pretty overcast. Posted by Hello

The tide was out when the Gorse Fox went for a "constitutional". An empty beach is rarely empty and GF was struck by how colourful a few small rocks can be when draped in seaweed. Posted by Hello

Myths of Corporate greed

Blognor Regis picks up this item from the Telegraph. It comes as a timely reminder, after all the recent publicity regarding the profits made by BP and Shell... that the real winner in all of this is HMG's Treasury.

The general public should focus their attention on the real villain of the piece. (And it's no good going off to the pub to drown your sorrows... that is heavily taxed too).

Saturday, February 19, 2005

Down-time

Had a quiet day with a lazy start. The Silver Vixen and Gorse Fox read the papers and favourite blogs then spent some time talking through the troubles of the world.
She provided an update on Auntie P. who has been a little depressed of late, but seems to snap out of it when challenged. We also discussed the difference between the way in which women and men communicate... recent experience re-inforces the GF view that for women communication is an end in itself, whereas for men it is merely a transport for carrying data between sender and recipient. For women, problems are there to be discussed and dissected, for men they are there to be solved, i.e. there is no point in discussing a problem if there is no attempt to find a solution. Venus and Mars guesses the Gorse Fox. Now this should not be misconstrued as a disagreement between SV and GF, we were in fact discussing the trials and tribulations of couples today.

After a lunchtime snack, the GF (in serious need of exercise after a sedentary week) headed off for a walk. It was a bright afternoon, with a cold northerly wind. It never ceases to amaze the GF how peaceful and quiet this area can be. In the hour or so he was out he saw 3 cars, and about 10 people... that was it. It was like having the world to oneself

Though bright, the beach was deserted, it was as if the Gorse Fox owned the whole strand. Though out for and hour or so, GF only passed about 10 people in all. Posted by Hello

Wintery February afternoon as the tide recedes. It really was rather chilly, but a most stimulating afternoon to be out walking. Posted by Hello

A pleasnat walk this afternoon brough the Gorse Fox past the East Kinston Manor. This is one of the oldest surviving properties in the Parish. It is reputed to have cellars that were once used by smugglers, but GF suspects that to be just a tale. Posted by Hello

Anyone like to guess from directions the prevailing winds blow, here on the Sussex coat. The GF passes this tree every day and always admiores the grace with which it bends, but never succumbs to the forces of nature. Posted by Hello

Random Fate offers an Uplifting View of Politics (!)

Random Fate offers two quotes to uplift the soul, and make you realise the real value of politics and politicians.

Friday, February 18, 2005

Traffic

GF called the Silver Vixen at lunchtime. She had arranged to visit Auntie P. at Jimi's place today. She was in the pub having luch when the GF called. She commented what a foul trip she had had, and that it had taken her three hours to get up there. Much of the problem had been the solid two lines of traffic that cruised up the A34.

The Gorse Fox headed back from Worcs mid afternoon. traffic for him was no real problem, but again the A34 seemed the slowest part of the journey.

Good Morning

Waking early after a good night's sleep the Gorse Fox hit the shower at 6:30. This is when the next draw-back of the hotel became evident. Most hotels now have water systems that balance the hot and cold feeds, and have anti-scald valves. Also, they have ventilators to extract steam from the bathrooms.

Last night's hotel had none of these features. This meant that as the bathroom slowly filled with steam, the shower fluctuated between stone cold and scalding hot as other residents flushed toilets and ran water to wash or shave. Now this could be be viewed as apalling, but the Gorse Fox is ever an optimist, and he saw this as an opportunity to get some early morning exercise running back and forth, in and out of the fluctuating stream.

Thursday, February 17, 2005


This was picture taken during the Gorse Fox's stroll through Worcester. In the foreground is the Elgar Gateway, and in the rear you can see the cathedral's tower. Posted by Hello

Night Moves

The Gorse Fox checked into a different hotel. A gorgeous old place right along the river bank. Room was nice enough, but the Gorse Fox felt that at this time of year, some heating would be nice. Fortunately, a bit of fiddling with the radiator valves freed them and slowly the room warmed up.

Meanwhile GF did his bit for the local economy by strolling back to the city centre to find a restaurant. Strolling past the Royal Worcester Porcelain factory up to the Cathedral the GF stopped to look at the beautiful architecture of the old Gateway and Cathedral. These were nicely illuminated and on the cold crisp evening.

GF looked at he menus of numerous eating places, but ended up eating at Chinese/Vietnamese restaurant. Excellent food, and excellent and friendly service. GF Spent some time, on returning to his room, trying to get the IR or Bluetooth connection working to his mobile phone so that he could connect to web as the phones in the hotel would not allow internet connections. IR/Bluetooth is great theory, but so far the practice eludes the Gorse Fox.

Worc Work

Early start this morning, but good trip. Amazing change in the weather as the Gorse Fox headed north west. Clear, dry and pleasant in the south, but by the time he passed Cirencester is was misty and wet.

Good meeting with Esteemed Client... and news that we should have contract signature overnight. Excuse the Gorse Fox's cynicism, but he will not be holding his breath. (He recognizes that the Esteemed Client is not at failt here... but rather her contracting trolls).

Wednesday, February 16, 2005

Sys-Cartography

A very productive and enjoyable day... if (I suppose) you enjoy the sort of work the Gorse Fox gets up to. He spent most of the day wading through spreadsheets describing delivery systems, and turning them into drawings that illustrate the complete, complex, scrapheap of systems currently supporting Esteemed Client.

Cousteau-cub called. She had been looking at changing some financial arrangements only to find the quotes you get on the internet don't turn out to be available when you actually phone up to investigate further. She was less than amused. However, she is considering having a couple of weeks vacation in Thailand in order to see her friends and get a burst of sunlight.

Heard from Betty & Barney Rubble, they have decided to visit Tenerife to get some sun and were asking for opinions on some of the areas. Discussed pros and cons of several and put them in touch with San Andres. Later they called back to confirm they have selected S-A, and will be there at the same time that we are. That'll be nice.

Off to Worcester again tomorrow. Trying a different hotel again.

Tuesday, February 15, 2005

Blonde on Silver

The Gorse Fox hasn't commented on the recent refurbishment of the Silver Vixen's cranial lagging. Until last Friday it was essentially Silver (hence the... oh I don't really need to explain. if I do you are too stupid to read this blog, go and find another one).

As a result the Silver Vixen's trip to Brighton, she has returned with a cheeky little haircut and subtle warm blonde colouring. When the artistes had finished their tonsorial spectacular the Silver Vixen had to go back - she was under strict daughterly instructions - via Cousteau-cub's house in order to wake her (she was on night duty) to show her... and then stop off at Urban-cub's flat to show her.

The Gorse Fox was the last to see it. Looks real good, and makes a change sleeping with a blonde. No apparent drop in intellect so far.

The corollary to this is that Cousteau-cub has this very day visited the same emporium of tonsorial dreams and had her lagging streaked or sprayed or something. She's very pleased with it, so that's good enough for the GF & SV.

Inventory

A clear crisp morning greeted the Gorse Fox on the South coast this morning.

Not too much to report today. Very busy building an inventory of systems used or linked to by Esteemed Client. Need to have sufficient to discuss at Worcester later in the week.

Monday, February 14, 2005

Visiting auntie

Well woke up to an old nightmare today.

The Gorse Fox had to go to London to see his auntie. Simon Templar had asked him to come and visit and help her make some difficult decisions. The trouble is the old dear is ga-ga... speaks with authority and yet makes little sense. Living on her repuation and the riches of the past, rather than her current no-longer rigourous intellect.

The jouney was relaxed, and it seemed strange entering the palatial halls as a visitor again. Simon Templar came down to escort me up to the meeting. Saw lots of familiar faces as we went up the stairs... nice to see these people, but old nightmares were lurking at the back of the mind. We discussed things at length, and had lunch while we talked. It was interesting how things had changed... there appeared to be less confrontation, and more intellectual rigour than I remember. It was clear that finally she was understanding the edifice we had created for her.

Sunday, February 13, 2005

Fish

Betty and Barney Rubble came to visit. We went to the Fish Factory for lunch. Firts time we've tried it... absolutely excellent. Will certainly try there again.

Worthing's "Fish Factory". Perhaps not the most inspiring frontage, but certainly a very fine eating establishment. Highly recommended. Posted by Hello

Mixing it

Living by the sea you can become obsessed by the sky, and its moods and nuances. Last night, free of light pollution as we are, it was a black slate sprayed with pin-points of silver. This morning it has been a bright clear blue, a menacing dark grey, and in the past 15 minutes a frayed mucky grey that sleet, rain, hail and snow flakes. It's never boring!

Saturday, February 12, 2005

The Last Pledges

Looks like someone else (Guy Fawkes)has started analyzing the last set of pledges. Respect !

Respect

My ongoing and profound respect for the politicians who currently run our country continues to grow. The Blessed Tony who has brought us:
  • 66 additional taxes
  • 1018 new crimes
  • in excess of 500,000 extra civil servants
  • The Sout-East Regional Authority - an unelected Quango to over-ride what the electorate of the South-East wants- because they weren't doing as they were told
  • longer waiting lists in the NHS
  • decriminalisation of class C drugs

Has now made 6 new pledges for the up-coming election.
  • Your family better off
  • Your child achieving more
  • Your children with the best start
  • Your family treated better and faster
  • Your community safer
  • You country's borders protected

Obviously we believe that he will fulfil these pledges, based on his track record for honesty and truthfulness, what else could we do? After all, he told us about WMD in Iraq, (oh no that wasn't right was it). He said there'd be not income tax rises (that was true, just 66 other taxes). He promised Gordon Brown... no, no, not that one either. OK I give up. Are there any promises he made that he kept? Has anyone observed him telling the truth?


These pledges are suitably bland and subjective as to say nothing. I'm sure many jouralists and bloggers will rip them apart and show them for what they are. Here are a few of my first thoughts:


  • Your family better off
    As long as you are on benefits - if you actually earn money and contribute to the economy you will continue as a cash cow for us in this self-serving, power-crazed, venal government; or if you are a pensioner because we have already robbed your pension funds and driven many out of business; or live in the South of England, because we are re-directing your subsidies up north, then capping your councils so that they cannot raise extra revenue.
  • Your child achieving more
    Because discipline is now so lax in schools that they can do what they like without fear of sanction, and when sanction or exclusion is imposed it will be over-ridden.
  • Your children with the best start
    Which is why school playing fields have been sold off, and school trips are rare because of fear of litigation, and Universities are closing Maths and Chemistry departments, and kids will leave university with vast debts
  • Your family treated better and faster
    By joining longer waiting lists to get onto waiting lists, before being treated by medical staff that we have asset-stripped from other countries
  • Your community safer
    Which is why we will allow 24-hour licensing for the sale of alcohol, have decriminalised some drugs, and will double the number of roadside revenue collection units (Speed cameras)
  • You country's borders protected
    By ID-cards... I can't start to express my contempt adequately

Is there anyone actually stupid enough to vote for them again? Surely when you have been mugged twice you don't go back and invite the mugger to do it again.

Friday, February 11, 2005

Contracts

The Gorse Fox wonders...
  • Esteemed Client asks for simple piece of consultancy.
  • Tells her contracting department to issue a Request
  • Request arrives at Gorse Fox three weeks later
  • Ellen MacArthur sets sail from Falmouth
  • Gorse Fox develops ideas for response and visits Esteemed Client to confirm
  • Gorse Fox writes response and submits it to review process
  • Review process has changed, but nobody has been told, trolls will not review unless it goes through new process.
  • Submit document to new process requesting it is reviewed and released by certain date
  • Requests totally ignored
  • Christmas comes and goes
  • Ellen MacArthur is in the Southern Ocean making great progress
  • New Year starts
  • Petty changes requested by trolls are made
  • Document released to Esteemed Client
  • Esteemed Client's trolls take over.
  • Trolls return with 3 comments
  • Respond to 3 comments and submit to review process
  • Ellen MacArthur on the home stretch
  • Trolls argue amongst themselves, time goes by
  • Wrong Document gets released without covering notes
  • Wrong Document gets released with covering notes
  • Right document gets released with covering notes
  • Ellen MacArthur arrives back in Falmouth
  • Esteemed Clients trolls debate and question each other
  • Time goes by...
  • Still no signature

I wonder why Government costs so much? Could it be there is waste in Government? Could it be that they waste so much time trying to start any particular task that there is no way it can be completed by the required date? Could it be that they are unable to differentiate between that upon which they sit and the articulated joint in their limbs?

What me bitter?

Thursday, February 10, 2005

HRH

Well Chuck has agreed to marry Camilla.

Interesting... head of the Church of England has adulterous affair with married woman. Now decides to marry her.

One smells a whiff of hypocrisy... somewhere.

Jenny Bond just referred to them as "comfortable together like pair of old slippers"... though the last word may have been slappers!

A moody sky greeted the Gorse Fox as he peered out from his hotel room this morning. The view from the room was across the golf links towards the Malvern Hills. Posted by Hello

Wednesday, February 09, 2005

Worcs Wide Wednesday

The Gorse Fox had a good run to Worcester. Usual problems on A34 where truckers play leapfrog with the truck in front... the speed differential between the two trucks is usual less that 0.00001 miles per hour, and they wait until arriving at a hill before indicating and immediately pulling out (it is up to you to get out of their way).

Shadow was at Worcester so we had a good update session. Also, Miss Ellie's replacement (yet to be christened) and Clint were both there so there is a head of steam beginning to form.

Tuesday, February 08, 2005

Water Margins

Gorse Fox has just booked a room for tomorrow night in the same hotel as last week, in Tewkesbury.
Thinks... will they realise I took all the water? I wonder if it's fixed? Must set alarm to get up early again, just in case !
Gorse Fox ponders...
27,000 miles, alone for 71 days, sailing an 8 ton yacht through the oceans; catching sleep in 10-15 minute naps; hauling 8000 square feet of sails, which you may change up to 15 times a day.

This is a superhuman feat. When you see what the human spirit is capable of you have to give thanks to whatever Supreme Being that you believe in.

BBC SPORT | Other Sport | Sailing | Britain welcomes Dame Ellen home

BBC SPORT | Other Sport | Sailing | Britain welcomes Dame Ellen home. Way to go, Dame Ellen.

What an awesome achievement

Monday, February 07, 2005

Urban dinner

Gorse Fox took Urban-cub out for a curry. She wanted to discuss the purchase of a new house and to discuss various options, pros and cons. It was a good daddy-daughter moment.
One always fears that the romance and excitement of property-purchase overcomes the logic. She and Sir Lancinglot seem to be taking it seriously... so let's hope it all works out for them.

Team Ellen

Team Ellen. Gorse Fox is getting excited that Ellen McArthur is doing so wll and should smash the record by about 30 hours. What a feat of endurance. How inspiring.

Nose and Grindstone

Whooaa there!

Busy day for the Gorse Fox today. Lots of abrasion to start the week, nose feeling sore already. Shadow called with feedback on contract... The Gorse Fox responded in a professional manner. It is no wonder we pay so much tax, when you see how much time the Gorse Fox has wasted waiting to do something constructive for HMG.

Silver Vixen went into Brighton again today. She has decided to remodel and redecorate her hair at some posh salon. They need to do a skin test first to ensure the paint they plan to use doesn't react with her skin in an unwanted fashion. Gorse Fox looks forward to Friday and thinks it should be fun... and looks forward to the outcome of the decorating frenzy.

Sunday, February 06, 2005

Quiet Sunday

The Silver Vixen has been out for the day. She has been visiting an exhibition at Ardingly with a friend. Its a glorious bright day, though chilly, so she should have a good time.

Had a quiet morning reading through a number of documents. Cousteau-cub has been with us for a couple of days, so Gorse Fox took her back to Brighton at lunch time.

Saturday, February 05, 2005

Adam Smith Institute Blog - Quote of the week

Adam Smith Institute Blog - Quote of the week. Friends of the Gorse Fox will recognise this quote as being a good summary of his feelings about our current governement. A self-serving, power-crazed bunch of trendy ne'er do wells who are intent on the destruction of our Country.
GF thinks that we have become so complacent with our lives, but so disillusioned by the denizens of Westminster, that these (insert own derogatory adjective) people will serve a further term.

Friday, February 04, 2005

Slinking away

The Gorse Fox stayed at a lovely Hotel last night. He makes the following observations:
  1. I assume it is regularly used by Americans because a) the bedrooms were heated to the point that you could fry eggs on the carpet, and b) the windows would notopen; and c)the public spaces had the distinct residual smell of cigars
  2. The Gorse Fox did not sleep well

Waking early he headed for the shower, but finding no appreciable water pressure decided on a bath. (Yep... must be the first bath for a couple of years!).

Going down to breakfast the Gorse Fox noticed the predominant source of discussion throughout the restaurant was the fact that the water had failed and nodoby could shower or bathe. The pump which supplied water to the building had failed.

"Mmm.." thinks the GF, "I managed to bathe at 6:30. Oooops." GF was probably the first person to notice the water problem, but assumed it was a naff shower, then used all of the stored water for his bath, leaving all the other guests high and dry (and smelly).

GF paid his bill, and slunk away quickly.

Thursday, February 03, 2005

Back Again

Poor Urban-cub. She returned to work today, but it didn't last. She had to return to the doctor, and has bee signed-off for 4 more weeks. She is most displeased, and very upset.
The quack is writing to C2BAX to try and get a consultation.

Gorse Fox is staying in Tewkesbury. Dark on arrival, but looks very smart.

Gravity can be an issue

Gravity's a bit of a bugger. The Gorse Fox has managed to sit through an interminable meeting defying the influence of gravity on his eyelids. The GF thinks this was an historic battle, and gravity lost.

Wednesday, February 02, 2005

Courting Trouble

The Silver Vixen was parked near the Magistrate's Court in Worthing this morning. On her return she reported to the Gorse Fox...
There was this woman, all brassy and mouthy. She came charging out of the courts building, f-ing and blinding, and accosted a woman outside and started a catfight with her**.
As the fight progressed the windows of the Courts building filled with on-lookers. The best part was that the security guards stood there laughing, whilst watching the entertainment.

It's nice to realise that reasoned debate is still so highly regarded in parts of Sussex.

**Thinks... is the cat used a weapon? Do you have to treat it first to stiffen it? Do you sharpen part of it? Do you use it as a club, a lance, or a sword? Which end to you hold?

Late hotel rooms UK, Ireland, Europe, US offers hotels with last minute discount deals

The Gorse Fox is off to Worcester again for a couple of days. Just thought he'd bring your attentio to Late hotel rooms UK, Ireland, Europe, US offers hotels with last minute discount deals.

GF has used them a couple of times and got some real good deals.

Welcome to the WorldWideWeird - Valentine Gift

Captain Slog is providing gift ideas for the up and coming Valentine's Day.

Bends

What a battle-royal. Last night saw Man Utd at Highbury to take on the Forces of Darkness. As any regular reader will know, the Gorse Fox supports Spurs... so his interest in such a game is merly as a non-partisan observer, wishing there was a way in which both teams could lose.

It was a magnificent game - passionate and committed. The GF's non-partisan status changed withing the first 10 minutes, however. It became clear that the Forces of Darkness were intent on winning at all costs, and that cheating would be a part of their game plan. This is not acceptable. However, this backfired when it also became clear that they were coming up from their dives too quickly, and the "bends" were setting in. MU soon got the measure of them and gave them a well-deserved good hiding.

I'm embarassed to say it... but well done MU.

Let me add, when I rule the world:

  1. Players that pull shirts will have to wear a pink shirt, false pig-tails, ballet pomps, and boxing gloves for 4 games.

  2. Players that argue with referees will be suspended for 8 games, for each offence

  3. Players who drop down, as if shot by a sniper, then get up and run around with no sign of injury after a free-kick is awarded, will have their toe-nails removed, there and then. (Give them a genuine reason to limp).

  4. Players who feign injury after they are accidentally caught in the face will have to spend half-time in the ring with Mike Tyson.

  5. Players that dive (i.e. cheat) will be suspended for a complete season, with no right of appeal


Mmmm... re-reading that list, the Forces of Darkness would be in a bad way. That appears to be their normal game plan!

Tuesday, February 01, 2005

The Bank

Some emails deserve a wider audience. This was sent to the Gorse Fox by a friend. The Gorse Fox makes no claim to text, but commends it to the reader:

THE BANK

The letter to the bank, shown below, is an actual letter that was sent to a bank by a 96 year old woman. The bank manager thought it amusing enough to have it published in the New York Times.

Dear Sir:

I am writing to thank you for bouncing my check with which I endeavored to pay my plumber last month. By my calculations, three nanoseconds must have lapsed between his presenting the check and the arrival in my account of the funds needed to honor it. I refer, of course, to the automatic monthly deposit of my entire pension, an arrangement which, I admit, has been in place for only eight years.


You are to be commended for seizing that brief window of opportunity, and also for debiting my account $30 by way of penalty for the inconvenience caused to your bank.

My thankfulness springs from the manner in which this incident has caused me to rethink my errant financial ways. I noticed that whereas I personally attend to your telephone calls and letters, when I try to contact you, I am confronted by the impersonal, overcharging, pre-recorded, faceless entity which your bank has become.

From now on, I, like you, choose only to deal with a flesh-and-blood person.

My mortgage and loan repayments will therefore and hereafter no longer be automatic, but will arrive at your bank, by check, addressed personally and confidentially to an employee at your bank whom you must nominate.

Be aware that it is an offence under the Postal Act for any other person to open such an envelope. Please find attached an Application Contact Status which I require your chosen employee to complete. I am sorry it runs to eight pages, but in order that I know as much about him or her as your bank knows about me, there is no alternative.

Please note that all copies of his or her medical history must be countersigned by a Notary Public, and the mandatory details of his/her financial situation (income, debts, assets and liabilities) must be accompanied by documented proof. In due course, I will issue your employee with a PIN number which he/she must quote in dealings with me. I regret that it cannot be shorter than 28 digits but, again, I have modeled it on the number of button presses required of me to access my account balance on your phone bank service.

As they say, imitation is the sincerest form of flattery.

Let me level the playing field even further. When you call me, press buttons as follows:



  1. To make an appointment to see me.
  2. To query a missing payment.
  3. To transfer the call to my living room in case I am there.
  4. To transfer the call to my bedroom in case I am sleeping.
  5. To transfer the call to my toilet in case I am attending to nature.
  6. To transfer the call to my mobile phone if I am not at home.
  7. To leave a message on my computer, a password to access my computer is required. Password will be communicated to you at a later date to the Authorized Contact.
  8. To return to the main menu and to listen to options 1 through 7.
  9. To make a general complaint or inquiry. The contact will then be put on hold, pending the attention of my automated answering service.


While this may, on occasion, involve a lengthy wait, uplifting music will play for the duration of the call.

Regrettably, but again following your example, I must also levy an establishment fee to cover the setting up of this new arrangement.


May I wish you a happy, if ever so slightly less prosperous New Year.


Your Humble Client



The Gorse Fox is mightily impressed.

Project x

Log jam cleared.
Project x has surfaced from "The Process"... project prevention trolls were thwarted.

Gorse Fox beats chest in triumph... then goes to beat chest in VW.

Peace and Conflict, Happiness and Despair

The Gorse Fox sees it as a duty to bring peace where there is conflict and happiness where there is despair.

The morning started well with a phone call from Tinkerbell. She was eager to catch up with progress, on her return from two weeks vacation in South America. She had had a wonderful time and was all fired up and ready for action.

The Gorse Fox explained.
 T: What about project x?
GF: Stuck in the "process".
 T: What about Project y?
GF: Stuck in the Process
 T: What about poject z?
GF: Guess.
 T: How's the client feeling?
GF: Guess.


At the end of the call Tinkerbell's lights were very dim, and she was bemoaning the fact that she no longer had a gas oven. The Gorse Fox must conclude that this morning he managed a passing impression of Mrs Raven... bringing conflict where there was peace, and despair where there was happiness.