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.




    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




    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.




    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 54 years of happy marriage.
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Archive for the ‘rant’ Category

What a way to run a country !

Posted by Big John on June 13, 2017

For the first time in my life I did not vote in a general election, mainly because I’ve had enough of being governed by a bunch of self-serving hypocritical slippery chancers, who’s manifestos did not make me feel that I should rush to the polling station knowing that my future prosperity would be secure and our country would be in safe hands.

I then learned, after one of the biggest cock-ups in our political history, that our Prime Minister and her cabinet appeared to have had little to do with the proposed future government policies as they were conceived in the brains minds of two unelected advisors from Westminster’s ‘La-La Land’ known as the ‘gruesome twosome’ !

Now, after her failed gamble, we have one of the weakest prime ministers ever, who could be ousted at any moment, and who is about to start Brexit negotiations with the EU. Something which she wasn’t in favour of in the first place.

… What could possibly go wrong ? 

Posted in humour, political, rant | 4 Comments »

Not so funny Phil !

Posted by Big John on May 5, 2017

Yesterday, my gardener .. (Well, the bloke who cuts the grass) .. had heard all the tributes paid to ‘Phil the Greek’ on his car radio, and thought that the cranky old duke had ‘popped his clogs’, when, in fact, he had only announced that he was going to retire next month, which came as a surprise to me, as I thought that he had retired when he married ‘er Maj.

As you would expect, the press, in their way ‘over the top’ coverage has highlighted his ‘gaffes’ and so-called sense of humour, mistakenly identifying his crass utterings for wit.

I feel that he is a rather graceless, arrogant, undiplomatic boor with an aggressive bullying manner and not exactly my idea of a …

… ‘Prince Charming’.

Posted in humour, rant | 3 Comments »

They must be due for another holiday.

Posted by Big John on April 22, 2017

I see that the damage limitation team of the Palace PR machine is at it again trying to make us believe, after some bad publicity, that Willy, Katie and Ginger are not the work shy, hedonistic, arrogant, hypocritical, pampered and over privileged, so-called ‘royals’ that we know them to be, with their partying antics and frequent vacations, but are, instead, ‘touchy feely’ sensitive souls who have suffered and need our sympathy.

In the case of Willy and Harry it is time to trot out their mother’s memory to polish their own images, but I feel that, maybe, judging by press and social media comments, the Palace PR ‘flunkies’ may have ‘shot themselves in the foot’ this time with all the ‘over the top’ emotional revelations, for mental health is a serious problem and not to be confused with grief, which we all feel at the loss of a loved one: and to let the ‘Do Nothing Duchess’ get in on the act with her ridiculous comments about motherhood being a “huge challenge”, the chat with Lady Gaga and all that crap about watching TV and eating take-away curries, plus hi-jacking the London Marathon is a long way from the usual .. “Oh dear, they’re in the shit again. Send one of them to the nearest hospice for ten minutes, and get a picture of the other one cuddling an African baby”.

So, as a supporter of the republican cause, all I can say to those peddlers of palace propaganda is …

…. “Keep up the good work chaps !”

Posted in rant | 2 Comments »

Easter is the New Christmas !

Posted by Big John on April 13, 2017

Public holidays don’t mean much to a retired old fart like me, as one day is much like another: so with this coming weekend being Easter I decided to visit my local Sainsbury’s before the ‘rush’ started, and discovered that the car park was full, there were queues at all the checkouts and the bloody place was heaving with people determined to pack their trollies (carts) full of all sorts of holiday treats, from turkeys to Easter cup cakes.

Can someone please explain to me what heaps of chocolate eggs, bunnies and fluffy chicks have to do with some poor sod being nailed to a cross around two thousand years ago ?

The nearest thing that I saw to the true meaning of this Christian religious festival were shelves full of hot cross buns, but, then again, they are on sale at this store …

… the whole year round !


Posted in humour, rant, religion | 5 Comments »

“nascent digital culture” .. ?.. No! me neither.

Posted by Big John on February 25, 2017

Post-traumatic stress disorder is a serious problem for many people and the type of events that can cause ‘PTSD’ include …

  • serious road accidents
  • violent personal assaults, such as sexual assault, mugging or robbery
  • prolonged sexual abuse, violence or severe neglect
  • witnessing violent deaths
  • military combat
  • being held hostage
  • terrorist attacks
  • natural disasters, such as severe floods, earthquakes or tsunamis

To me, the cause that first ‘springs to mind’ is that related to ‘military combat’ and it’s association with the ‘shell-shock’ suffered by soldiers who experienced the horrors of the trenches during WWI and the devastating effects that modern warfare has had on so many people across the world to this day.

Now I learn that another cause can be added to the above list …

…    Being separated from your bloody smartphone !



Posted in rant | 4 Comments »

Definitely a ‘wrong number’ !

Posted by Big John on February 9, 2017

The other evening I watched a movie on ‘Sky’ based on a book by Stephen King. It was called ‘Cell’ and was a story all about people being turned into ‘zombie-like’ creatures after answering a call on their smartphones. So as I see dozens of such people walking our streets every day and they bump into me on a regular basis, I thought that this film could be based on ‘true life’.

I was wrong ! .. It was the biggest load of crap I have seen in a long time, and the plot (if you could call it a ‘plot’) involved a small number of survivors being chased around the New England countryside by mobs of rabid killers who have had their brains re-programmed by an electronic signal broadcast across mobile phone networks. Apparently these murderous “phoners” were part of some evil plot to see the world descend into apocalyptic madness.

At this point I have to give up on trying to explain anything else about this dreadful drama as it would require my own old brain to be re-programmed before I could begin to understand what the bloody hell was going on !

Perhaps the next time I visit my local Sainsbury’s I’ll ask one of those resident ‘zombies’ who wander the aisles, to enlighten me with regard to the baffling ending of this load of old codswallop. I just hope that she it doesn’t try to beat my brains out …

… with a can of baked beans !

Posted in entertainment, humour, rant | 6 Comments »

Duck ! .. ? .. Well it is ‘The Donald’.

Posted by Big John on February 4, 2017

For the moment I will reserve my judgment on Donald Trump as it’s still early days in his presidency and it could take some time before the media (at least on this side of the Atlantic) gives an accurate account of what the silent majority of ordinary American people make of him, and stop concentrating on our ‘special relationship’, the bloody ‘state visit’ and the protestations of all the ‘celebs’, ‘luvvies’, political pundits and those US voters who are still ‘in shock’ over how democracy works.

However, I must say, that although there is much about the new resident of the White House that I find distasteful and somewhat unnerving, he does score “Bigly” with me for not being the usual slippery, self-serving career politician and being so stinking rich that he won’t need to reach under the table for those brown paper envelopes.

Anyway, we (Yes ! I do mean ‘we’) are stuck with him, and to misquote the late Bette Davis in the movie ‘All About Eve’, all I can say at this point is …

… “Fasten your seatbelts, its going to be a bumpy ride” !

Posted in humour, political, rant | 4 Comments »

“Trigger Warnings” ! … but no bullets.

Posted by Big John on January 7, 2017

I see that ‘Generation Snowflake’ is in the news again because theology students at the University of Glasgow are receiving advanced warnings that they might be upset by seeing distressing images while studying the Crucifixion of Jesus, so that they can avoid this harrowing experience by leaving lectures if they are unable to cope with reality outside of their ‘ivory tower’ which provides them with ‘safe spaces’ where they also need never fear someone from the real world offending them in any way or not using their ‘preferred gender’ title when addressing them.

How on earth did previous generations of 18 and 20 year olds cope with the ‘reality’ of their lives ?

In my case, I, and many thousands of others of the same age, had to spend two years in the armed forces and I can’t imagine our sergeants and corporals saying ..

“Fall out all those who want to be excused bayonet practice as it makes them feel a bit queasy” .. or .. “Please don’t cry if I call you a nasty name or be offended if I appear to doubt that you are ‘equipped’ as a man”.

Now I’m pretty sure that today’s students are not all ‘precious little souls’ and my experience of military life took place nearly 60 years ago. However, although the world of the young has changed almost beyond recognition, one thing remains somewhat the same, for I did have my own ‘space’ to which I could retire, although it wasn’t exactly ‘safe’ as it was called a bunk and was situated in a barrack room …

… alongside 23 others ! 

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