Spike Milligan has disintegrated

Just knocked him off the shelf and the book has splintered into sections.  Sounds rather like the man when he was alive.  Apparently when he went into hospital the stuff he wrote was so brilliant that when he came out the other Goons tried to get him back in again.

John Peel didn’t like the Goons; was very scathing about Spike after meeting him.  To be fair, he does seem to have been Not a Very Nice Person some of the time.

Comment is Free

Yes!  We are now up to 202 comments and it’s the end of the month!  Well done everyone – a sterling effort.

Puzzled by our vicar.  He saw me in the street the other day, asked if “things were going ok.”  I said, “No”.  Well, they weren’t: we’d just had a nasty letter from the tax people, etc etc etc.  “Oh,” he said.  “Things not great then?”  “No”, I reiterated.  He was on his way to somewhere, clearly didn’t want to be having this conversation.  “Are you going to Tomatoes on Saturday?” he asked.  I said we were.  “I’ll catch you then,” he said.  And off he went.

Did he catch us?  Nope.  Didn’t even say hallo.  I find it very odd.

Teacher training today.  I don’t feel very bright and breezy – woke up in the night and now I have a headache.

Holly’s drama yesterday seems to have been good, although she said they were “very strict!”  They are doing a production of “The Snow Queen” which will be performed at the Curve!

Lies, damned lies and Home Ed statistics…

According to Mark, the Graham Badman has said that home ed children are at “double the risk of abuse”.  There is a home educating statistician who has an MA in statistics and has comprehensively refuted this – however, they are still saying it.

Basically, I think it comes down to this – there are people out there the government can’t control.  This makes them very uncomfortable – and they want to control them.  While home educators numbered only a few thousand, they didn’t bother, but now there are hundreds of thousands, they are worried.

I’ll try to find some info about this but right now I’m tired.

Here’s a link to another blog:


To be fair, I think there are some respectable arguments for saying that parents should be required to show that they are providing their children with an education and not using them as slave labour or whatever.  But our concern is how intrusive this process will be and how far we will be required to replicate things that schools are doing, which will take away the whole point of doing it.

Holly is going to Drama today.  We will be going to Tomatoes and someone is picking up biscuit tins.  Exciting!


Nightmare yesterday.  Went to observe a student in Nuneaton.  Looked up directions on the AA website.  “Seems simple enough”, I thought.  “I’ll leave an extra 1/4 hr in case of hold-ups.”  The M 69 was OK, the A5 no problem, the A444 free of traffic jams.  I looked at the next bit of the instructions:

“Turn left onto the B4114 (Corporation Street)”, it said confidently.  I confidently turned left onto the B4114.  It wasn’t Corporation Street.  Oh, well, I thought, maybe they just got the name wrong.  I’ll look for the next turning.  Nope – nothing.  I went back to the main road, carried on.  maybe there would be another B 4114.  Nope.  There was a complicated and twisty main road – and I was lost.  I stopped to ask someone.  Yes!  They knew Corporation St.  “Go up there and round and there’s a sort of bus station…” he said.  “Turn right and that’s Corporation St”.  And it was.  But it was a dead end.

I won’t bore you with the rest – how I phoned Mark to get the student’s mobile number, then phoned it but it was switched off; how I tried an increasingly desperate series of manoeuvres and finally got through to her.  I had to call her three times for more directions.  I guess I won’t be using the AA again.

Now, that reminds me of my favourite bit of Four Weddings and a Funeral, where they’re just going past the B 3159…

Oh, all right!  No more FWF.  Although our sign-language expert informs me that they got the signing more or less right.

Didn’t sleep well.  Still travelling round Nuneaton in my sleep.

Kirk out.

Let’s get those comments up to 200!

Only 2 more comments and I’ll be up to 200!!  Post some and let’s get there before the end of Feb!!

I think Holly had a good birthday yesterday.  It didn’t start well, from my point of view, as I was feeling depressed.  Then we had a letter from the Inland Revenue saying I owe them money from 2007, which didn’t exactly help.  But then we had a couple of visitors and she got some more cards and everyone at Woodcraft sang Happy Birthday and she got some more cards and Ruadhan came round and she made a cake and we sang Happy Birthday and I cleared out the cupboard and found an old food processor we’d forgotten about (wait, that’s not birthday-related) so it ended better.

A very generous person has given us some money.  So – today, shopping!  I am getting the car this morning and we will visit Mark’s mum this afternoon.

Still sad about that bursary.  It would have been so great.  Still, depression has its uses – I found an old food processor.  Wish I had a word processor which would take all my words and mix them to a really smooth consistency…

Kirk out

The Nissan Placenta

Victoria Wood is on Facebook, talking about Sacharelle.  Remember Sacharelle?  It was a piss-take of a sales pitch for some range of beauty products.  Victoria Wood is pitch-perfect (ho, ho.)

What, you want a youtube link?  Oh, all right then.

Can’t find it.  But here’s my favourite ever bit of Wood.  The woman is quite phenomenally talented.

The title of this post was one of hers.  I remember I said I was going to blog about car names and I haven’t – but the Nissan Placenta says it all.  (Incidentally, my mum was offended even by that.  You couldn’t win.)

Kirk out to lunch

Get R not A

The best blog postings are the ones that come to you at 4 am.  Unfortunately they go between 5 and 6 am, even though you try to fix them in your mind with a catchy phrase.  All that remains is this bit: that I should get wRiting, stop wAiting.  Just have to get that novel written – even if it is crap, it’s a start.

Anna will be celebrating her 75th birthday next month.  She has invited us all for lunch, but unfortunately I have a teacher training day.  We go back a long way – when I first came to Leicester in 1988, CND was in its heyday.  They had hundreds, possibly thousands of members.  Oh, the decisions!  Whether to join Stoneygate or Clarendon Park Neighbourhood Group!  In the end we plumped for Stoneygate, went to local meetings at unfeasibly huge houses behind London Rd.  Meanwhile Mark was attending a totally different neighbourhood group.  The first Anna knew about it was when we announced our intention to get married!  She saw us both together for the first time and said: “Well, this is a surprise!”

And it was.

An acquaintance of ours – actually, strictly speaking this person isn’t an acquaintance, since she’s the only person I’ve ever cut completely out of my life, to the extent of crossing the road to avoid her – anyway, this person is apparently going to open a shop.  Why?  Because a friend of hers has a relative who is going to let her have one rent-free for a few months.  What is she going to sell?  Erm – well, she has a lot of stuff in her attic.  Plus, she asked Holly if she had any art-work she wanted to sell.

Mm.  A difficult retail environment, shops closing at the rate of one a minute…

I rest my case.

Holly’s birthday today.  She is 16!  Not sure what we are going to do besides baking her a cake.  Upset yesterday because my parents are dead and she only has one grandparent who cares.

Kirk out.

A room of one’s own – almost

Got briefly excited today.  On the news they talked about a charity which helps older women achieve Virginia Woolf’s aim of having money and a room of one’s own in order to write.  They give you a bursary and a cottage to live in for upwards of two months while you write your novel.  Great!  I thought.  Let’s get to it.

Yep.  You’ve guessed it – there’s a catch.  You have to have a contract with a publisher.

Back to the writing-board.


Would be nice to have a break of some kind – before I die.

PS Phil’s funeral very moving.