bigjohn

There is many a good tune played on an old fiddle.

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  • My Life and Times

    I was born in 1939 BC. That's 'Before Computers'. Luckily I survived the following events in my life, such as World War II, The London Blitz, Rationing, and worst of all... Archbishop Temple's School.

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    During the mid 1950s I was enjoying Rock 'n' Roll and being a first generation teenager, when suddenly, just like Elvis, I found myself in uniform during 'The Cold War'...and then

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    I became 'a family'. Which meant that I sort of missed the 'swinging sixties', but still managed to look a complete prat in the 70s, just like everyone else.

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    During the 'Thatcher Years' I lost my hair and a lot of people lost a good deal more. My career fluctuated to say the least as I was demoted, promoted, fired and hired a number of times, but still I managed to stagger on into a welcome retirement and to celebrate 50 years of happy marriage.
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Don’t expect Tony Curtis and Janet Leigh.

Posted by Big John on May 28, 2014

An old English prayer goes something along these lines …

… “From the Fury of the Northmen deliver us, O Lord” …

… but having just watched the first two episodes of the ‘History Channel’ series ‘Vikings‘, I have to say that, with so little to watch on TV these days, I thank Odin for giving us this saga about a bunch of scruffy Scandinavian seafarers and smelly shieldmaidens.

It all looks authentic, with not a horned helmet in sight, just dodgy haircuts and lots of dirty bits. Yes, the characters certainly seem to live up to the description by an Arab emissary who met a group of Vikings, and described them as .. “The filthiest of Allah’s creatures: they do not wash after shitting or peeing, nor after sexual intercourse, and do not wash after eating.”

I do enjoy a good ‘historical’ drama, and, as not much is known about this period of history, there is not too much that can be criticised in this production, which is based on history and myth; and even in the ‘Anglo-Saxon Chronicle’ it reports that .. “the harrying of the heathen miserably destroyed God’s church in Lindisfarne by rapine and slaughter” .. so all that bloody slashing and hacking at those poor old monks was probably a realistic depiction of a raid by Ragnar and his filthy followers. No wonder the petrified priests and people of the time intoned that old prayer.

Oh! .. and before I forget. This show comes with a big bonus. For unlike so many TV dramas these days, you can hear every word the actors say and see all the action, even when it takes place …

… ‘in the dark’ !   

Posted in humour, religion | 2 Comments »

Melancholy Morons.

Posted by Big John on May 20, 2014

Every day I feel more out of touch with modern life, or perhaps I should say, out of touch with the behaviour of other people in this world of  ‘faux’ emotion, hysterical reaction and undignified and often aggressive behaviour in public.

At the risk of sounding a more grumpy old sod than usual, I must say that I am sick to death of turning on my TV only to be greeted with the sight of the weeping winners of cookery competitions, the crying losers of so-called talent shows, the non-stop screaming of the audiences, ‘celeb’ judges biting their trembling lips, big tough football (soccer) ‘heroes’ wiping away their tears, complete strangers hugging and kissing, and people applauding coffins at funerals. I have to wonder how long it will be before we see an undertaker ‘high-fiving’ a row of mourners ?

Now, there is nothing wrong in showing your true emotions or affection for others. I just think that very many people today can’t see that the ‘reality’ nonsense shown on TV is just that ! .. ‘nonsense’ ! .. and so they feel that they must publicly ‘fall apart’ at every opportunity; or, even worse, ‘worship’ at some roadside ‘grief-lite’ shrine to someone they never knew. Blimey ! .. Recently some nutters even called for the erection of a roadside memorial to a truck load of chickens killed in a traffic accident !

I must admit that I am not a ‘touchy-feely’ person and reserve my hugs and kisses for ‘my nearest and dearest’, for I am a ‘remnant’ of an age when a handshake was a normal greeting. It was also the way in which sportsmen and others congratulated each other; and wearing black and showing self-restraint was how one displayed respect for the dead.

I think that I had better stop now, and go for a lie down as I feel …

… a ‘stiff upper lip’ coming on !   …   ;-)

Posted in humour, nostalgia, rant | 4 Comments »

“Now, what did I want ?”

Posted by Big John on May 8, 2014

Can someone please explain why so many people visit their local supermarket without a shopping list ? Each time that I am in Sainsbury’s I hear some trolley (cart) pushing partner asking their companion … “Do we have any butter in the fridge ?” or … “Do we need more sugar ?” …

… and it’s not just old farts like me who are at it, for around the corner in almost every aisle is some young mum hanging on to a little brat with one hand, as she presses her smart phone to her ear with the other and enquires … “Should I get another pack of sausages?”…

…  or the lady in the booze section, with a voice trained to ‘frighten the horses’ who insists that everyone in the store should be aware that she is not sure if there is .. “any more of that delightful little Côtes du Rhône left in the cellar?”.

Yesterday, before I even got out of my car, I heard someone in the carpark asking … “Do we need any bread today?”

Blimey ! .. It’s not ‘rocket science’, all you need is a pencil and paper and a quick look in the freezer and kitchen cupboards before you leave home.

No wonder I see so many people ‘just popping in’ to the store to pick up ‘one or two items’. I suppose that they have to, otherwise at every mealtime you would hear … “Pass the …

… Oh! .. I forgot to get some.” 

Posted in humour, rant | 6 Comments »

Now she’s not “Just Wild About Harry” !

Posted by Big John on May 1, 2014

Oh Dear ! .. What a shame ! .. Poor old Harry ! .. Not only is he no longer the ‘ginger-spare’, now that Kate and Willy have ‘Gorgeous George’, their chubby little cherubic (pass the sick bag) son and heir, but his girlfriend, Cressy Bone-Arse, has given him the old ‘heave-ho !’.

I bet that Cressy’s mum, former 60′s ‘IT Girl’, nutty naughty Lady Mary-Gaye Curzon (four husbands and five kids), is right pissed off with her daughter for ditching ‘Hooray Harry’, as she was looking forward to Cressy’s half-sister, the ‘triple barrelled’ and ex-”main squeeze” of big brother Willy, Isabella Anstruther-Gough-Calthorpe, doing a ‘Pippa‘ at the wedding.

I’m so upset, for like so many silly old sods loyal pensioners, I had already started saving to buy Harry and Cressy a wedding present, and was looking forward to visiting London to sit in the pissing rain for two days outside Buckingham Palace for a glimpse of the over-privileged pair happy couple.

Honestly, I’m so distressed by the news, I think that …

…  I may even need counselling !

Posted in humour, rant | 4 Comments »

Knock twice and ask for Peter.

Posted by Big John on April 28, 2014

Blimey ! … The ex-archdruidbishop of Canterbury agrees with me !

I see that since leaving office someone decided to make him Lord (No! not the ‘Lord’) Williams of Oystermouth (Where do they get these titles ?).

Still, that’s nothing compared to what the Pope has been up to last weekend, as old Frankie has performed one Hell of a spectacular ceremony in Rome canonizing two of his predecessors, Popes John Paul II and John XXIII, which means that they can now pass through the pearly gates as Saints.

Well good for them ! Perhaps when they get in there (I wonder if it’s the same Paradise where all those suicide bombers go ?) they will have a word with the bloke in charge about commanding all his followers back on earth to get out of the habit of…

…   blowing each other to pieces ?

Posted in humour, political, rant, religion | 2 Comments »

Religion ? .. Just tick the box marked ‘C of E’.

Posted by Big John on April 23, 2014

So, unlike Tony Blair, David Cameron does “do God”, and his recent announcement that Britain is a “Christian country” has caused quite an uproar from my fellow atheists and others.

I won’t go into detail on this as the media has this story well covered.

However, with the Anglican Church rapidly disappearing up it’s own cassock, and all the mosques and temples springing up all over the place: not to mention all the other ‘houses of worship’ of every variety of religious nutter on the face of the earth, I find it hard to see how our Dave comes to such a conclusion.

I recently read that The National Offender Management Service, which runs prisons in England and Wales, recognises 18 religions, including Paganism, Jainism, Spiritualism and Zoroastrianism; and that the Rastafari religion (minus the ‘ganja’ smoking) has recently been added to the list, and I’m pretty sure that all those who “get religion” in the ‘nick’ are fairly representative of the other believers in this country.

It has been reported that in the 2011 census 60% of people in this country claimed to be Christian, but I believe that it was 60% of those who “claimed to be religious” who said that they where Christians. Quite a different thing altogether; and only 7% of these people said that they were regular church goers.

I suppose that on this Saint George’s Day it’s OK to remember that we live in what was historically a ‘Christian country’ …

… but it ain’t any more !  

Posted in humour, political, rant, religion | 4 Comments »

“Jesus who ?”

Posted by Big John on April 17, 2014

As a tolerant (?) atheist I am quite happy to see the members of different faiths celebrate their various religious festivals, apart from when the mumbo-jumbo merchants who run these events impose their will on the rest of us: such as insisting that larger shops in England and Wales, by law, must close on Easter Sunday and Christmas Day.

OK, so shutting some shops for a couple of days a year is no big deal, but I’m sure that the zombies who wander around shopping malls every Sunday have no idea why their favourite department store or supermarket will be closed this weekend …

… “The Last Supper ? What’s that all about then ?” … “Crucifixion ? Never ‘erd of it mate !” … “Pontius Pilate ? Who’s ‘e play for ?” … “Gethsemane ? Ain’t that near Benidorm ?” … “The Passion of Christ ? Now that sounds like … a bit of porn to me !”

…   and if you think that I’m kidding … READ THIS !

:-) .. HAPPY EASTER EVERYONE ..  :-)

Posted in humour, political, rant, religion | 3 Comments »

They’re both bossy and barmy !

Posted by Big John on April 7, 2014

I see that the ‘nanny state’ has gone into overdrive recently with the ridiculous idea that junk fast food restaurants and take-outs should sell smaller pizzas, burgers and curries, plus a laughable ‘threat’ to smokers that cigarettes may soon only be sold in plain packs; and that beer and wine glasses used in pubs and restaurants should be marked with a scale showing how many units of alcohol they contain. Oh! .. and before I forget .. that we should all eat ten (Yes, ten !) portions of fruit and veg each day.

OK, so I’m sure that many of us know that it makes sense to eat a healthy diet and not to overdo the doughnuts and to be careful when drinking out of wet glasses, but do ‘those who think that they know better than us what is good for us’ really believe that the likes of the tattooed hulks and their demanding brats, who can be seen at every ‘drive-thru’, pub and pizza parlour, will stop smoking their full strength fags, give up their pints of super strong larger and rush to the supermarket to buy their ‘daily ten’ ?

Of course they bloody won’t ! … So what if their favourite pizza is an inch or two smaller and their usual burger has shrunk in size ? … They will just buy them …

… two at a time !

Posted in family, humour, political, rant | 3 Comments »

 
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