A Far Fetched Resolution

I’ll tell you what happens with impossible promises. You start with far-fetched resolutions. They are then pickled into a rigid dogma, a code, you go through the years sticking to that, out-dated, misplaced, irrelevant to the real needs, and you end up in the grotesque chaos of a Labour council, a Labour council hiring taxis to scuttle round the city handing out redundancy notices to its own workers. I’ll tell you.. You can’t play politics with people’s jobs and with people’s services.

Thursday, July 27, 2006

Panic over...

I came back up to Liverpool from London late the other day and Tipsy, my mighty moggy, had buggered off somewhere.

Convinced that through my tardiness I had caused him to mope off and die somewhere through lack of

a. Food
b. Pills (wot he eats to make him less manky)

I was a little concerned.

My mother and Neville are away and therefore the burden of sustaining the fat feline falls upon me, since I've got nowt else to do but send my CV off to people and lounge around hoping nobody gives me a job until the winter.

Anyway after nearly 48 hours panicking I located the beast in an RSPCA centre in Halewood (where, fittingly, they make Jaguars. And Lambrini. But I'm not sure I believe that.) . He is now a very stressed moggy. But he'll cope.

Here's a celebratory picture of the creature:

Friday, July 21, 2006

Packing heat

Hmmm...few days in Livepool (photos to follow) at home with folks.

Friend is moving up to Liverpool so he stayed for a couple of days to have a look round for a flat. Emily came to stay too. We went to the Albert Dock to have a look round, and to the Tate Gallery (yes, we have art in the north). It was generally difficult dealing with how hot it was. Dan (Friend) was bitterly considering his luck in picking the hottest day of the year to go house hunting on foot. He was quite pink.

Lovely time had by all. Except that we lost the Willow Bank quiz on a tie-break after being, in my view controversially, denied a half point for having guessed 3 African countries on the shores of Lake Victoria, getting one right when 2 were needed. (half the answers right, half the points, surely?) A moral victory was achieved when John the quizzy announced our team as the winner and I pointed out his mistake - honesty is always the best policy. Having split the pot between the team we would have each gained a few quid; but the self righteous feeling of having done a good deed was worth so much more.

Returned to Oxford with a view to packing my room up for the big move tomorrow. However the temperature in my room is in excess of 156 degrees Farenheit which is at least a million Celsius and basically having panted and puffed for a bit I collapsed in a sweaty mess and slept soundly til about ten minutes ago.

Now it's still unutterably hot (windows wide open but it just means I'm getting different hot air) and I've got to pack in a rush. Saint Anneliese of The Wilder Bits of Scotland is supremely kindly driving me and my stuff to London tomorrow night so I can dump it in a corner of my Dad's flat whilst I contemplate my next move...

Not even really had time to mull over the end of my brief sojourn in Oxford. It's been 6 productive months; I'm currently up 1 x Girlfriend whom I love very much, 1 x Very satisfactory degree, 1 x Passable tan, 100 x stories and memories of good friends who have been on hand to give me moral support at what was a bit of a stressful time.

I took a bit of a wild stab in the dark turning down career opportunities to come a prove a point to myself that I wasn't actually as thick as all that. As a gamble it's really paid off and I'm bloody delighted I did it.

The fact that I am currently jobless and homeless should be cause for concern but I'm not really giving that much thought as it's too sodding sunny to care.

Tuesday, July 11, 2006

This country is going to the dogs...

Our great nation, ruler of the waves, and the pink bits on the map, and factory of the world.

We were the envy of all with our armed forces feared, our navy unsurpassed, British goods in homes throughout every continent.

Men were men, and we trained them to rule an empire.

Now all of these mickey mouse degrees these days we can't even rule ourselves properly and everyone's going to be speaking French in a few years time.

That's what I think.

I mean even bloody Pickles got a 2:1. PARTAY!

Monday, July 10, 2006

By the hairs of my chinny chin chin

The first thing that occurred to me at the end of the world cup final was an article I'd read a few weeks ago in the "knowledge" feature on Guardianunlimited;

"For some reason, I believe that no bearded player has ever won the World Cup," claims Jonathan Taylor. "Can this be right? And I mean full beards, not stubble, goatees or moustaches - the full works."

Strict guidelines indeed, but Olly Winkles is one of several readers to remember at least one hairy-faced winner. "Step forward Sergio Batista of Argentina," writes Olly. "He sported a full-on beard in the 1986 final...."

Olly adds that, "arguably, West Germany's Paul Breitner could be described as bearded in 1974 too," but despite an impressive 'tache/sideburns combo, we're not letting 'Der Afro' into the select band. Nor Fabien Barthez's 1998 goatie effort, or Ricky Villa's handlebar in 1978, both of which were good, but not good enough. Sadly there's a distinct lack of bushy facial features on show in Germany this summer, although should Gennaro Gattuso steer clear of a razor and Italy go all the way, then he'll surely be eligible to join Batista in the pantheon of hirsute legends."

History in the making. I texted everyone (not quite everyone...) in my phone book to let them know the importance of what they had just seen, (the second ever bearded world cup winner) and here's a selection of responses:

"Who was the other?" (most popular response)
"But what about Socrates" (most popular response from people who don't have a very good memory for these things)
"Forza Italia" (most popular response from Italians)
"Is Paul Breitner the first" (From a football geek, who was nevertheless wrong)
"Gimp" (Someone who wasn't particularly interested)
"What!?" (From someone who seems to have taken the whole thing a bit too seriously)
"A uniquely great fact...but who are you?" (from someone who has lost all of their phone numbers)
"That's knowledge! Can't believe the Italians won on penalties" (From someone who has trouble focusing on the bigger picture)
"What was Zidane doing?" (from someone who is always about half an hour behind everyone else.)


A lot of people who are talking about yesterday's World Cup final are asking the question as to whether the fourth official ("extra ref" as I like to call it, just as they're actually called "linesmen" not "Referee's assistants" and it's "injury" time, not "stoppage" time) stole a glance at a telly screen in order to be able to advise the ref (correctly) to send Zidane off yesterday.

I don't really think it's a very worthwhile debate to have. He clearly did - play was miles away and none of the other officials saw it. And they've got intercom systems so, if he saw it straight away the referee wouldn't have had to spend 5 minutes wandering around like a headless chicken until the fourth official mentioned it to him.

The real debate to have is why the fourth official had time to pull up a chair, get a cup of tea and generally mull it all over.

And that's because the Italian players seem to have started a mini riot around the referee. It was obviously worthy of a red card - but after the officials missed it and waved away the first protests that should have been it.

If and when video replays do come in then the decision to check it should be based on something more sensible than how many Italians shout at the referee.

(Whilst I haven't posted much on the world cup I feel I should point out, I am not the kind of johnny come lately once every four-years football fan that seems to get up the nose of Alistair Campbell so much. In fact, I had a season ticket at Goodison Park for four years in the mid/late 1990s until I moved away. Anybody who remembers Everton's form from that period will appreciate that "Glory Hunting" is not something I can be accused of. Also, I watched the whole of Tunisia v. Saudi Arabia.)

Idiots; Please read this. Understand it. Do not darken my door again.

The minutes of the previous meeting being carried I would like to propose the following motion:

This most wonderful website expresses in a way that I only wish more people could the pointlessness and inanity of much of what passes for debate within our Party. I mandate all readers of Afarfetchedresolution (yes, that's you. And you too) to read and understand http://idiots4labour.blogspot.com/

I had a conversation over a Crispy Duck at a chinese restaurant with some friends and many of the points made on this blog were made then - but none of us could hope to reach the eloquence of this anonymous blogger who has somehow captured the sheer futility of it all.

Sunday, July 09, 2006

The Old Boys (In Da Hood) network

David Cameron is apparently, according to the beeb, preparing to call for...' greater understanding of teenage "hoodies" in a forthcoming speech on social justice. Mr Cameron will say teenagers who hide under hooded tops are trying to "blend in" rather than appear threatening. He will describe hoodies as "a response to a problem, not a problem itself"

It's a nice idea. Not a million miles from a worthwhile message to push with young people, if a little opportunstic (well, duh)

But in this context it raises some interesting questions.

Will he himself be demonstrating his commitment to the hoodie cause by actually wearing one? I dearly dearly hope so. Maybe we can convince him to go to Alton Towers in one.

(Muchos thanks to the virtual stoa for the picture wot I nicked)

UPDATE: From the Graun: "He will insist tough sanctions are still required for offending and that crime cannot be excused, but he will stress that 'inside those boundaries we have to show a lot more love'"


Friday, July 07, 2006

"Just getting in touch to let you know that I will be voting for..."

A number of people have got in touch regarding the Labour Party's NEC elections. (I need to go to my dad's to pick up my ballot paper - the perils of the nomadic life).

What surprises me is the pretty silly way these approaches have been made.

They all (accross the spectrum of candidates) appear to be taking the form "I just thought I should let you know that I will be voting for..."

Is it just me or is this the most ridiculous way of going about things? I presume (hope) that most of the people who are getting in touch have done a fair bit of knocking on doors and talking to ordinary voters in their time. In which case, surely they wouldn't ever have considered knocking at No. 37 and saying "Hi Mrs Goggins, I just thought I'd pop round to let you know I will be voting Labour in the forthcoming local council byelection". It would make you seem like a bit of a dope wouldn't it?

Anyhow. For what it's worth, it will surprise nobody to learn that I made my mind up which way I shall be voting long ago. If you're interested, two people I will be definately voting for are Ellie Reeves and Peter Wheeler. My biggest obsession in the Labour Party is the hard work and resources that are needed to get more young people involved. Both these people have a record on this that simply knocks spots of the rest of the candidates in the race.

I can think of at least one young person who would never have got involved either in a local Young Labour group or University Labour Club without their hard work.


But I don't think me posting this here is going to make a whole lot of difference to the way you vote.

As thoughts turn to the future...

I have spent most of the past month (and it is a month !?!) celebrating the fact that after six years I have completed my finals.

On Monday or Tuesday (Oxford's exam system is as arcane and disorganised as it is farcical) I will find out if "completed" means "passed".

I wait with baited breath. If I'm being honest with myself I'm not expecting great things. 5 1/2 years of prevarication (including: Three jobs, two general elections, four byelections, 7different homes - including two hotels- and lots lots more) followed by 5 1/2 months of feeling my way blind throught the vast recesses of political and philosophical academic literature is not ( I repeat, not) the best way to approach a degree course.

My thoughts are also turning to the future;

I currently have no job.
no home.
A little money.
No degree or post-school qualifications in anything (not even a driving license - although I'm working on that)
No work experience outside the narrow confines of the Labour Party & Labour Students. (except for a year's teaching English to school kids. In France. Not very well.)

Some might find this scary. Indeed last time I was in this position it was very scary indeed. But now I think I'm finding it quite liberating. Contact me in three months time and I really don't know what I'll be doing.

There's ideas floating around - and some jobs I could probably go for. But...well...if it weren't for the fact that the world cup is over in four days, and I'll eventually need to eat and pay rent, and the weather is likely to get pretty rubbish in around September (if not before...) then I'd quite like to carry on as things are...

Suggestions welcome.