web analytics

Happy St Paddy’s Day!

One of Uncle B’s London clients phoned this afternoon. He was going to be in Brighton this evening, could we meet him there to touch base? As it happens, it’s someone we’ve been meaning to go up to see for some time, so it had to be yes.

Thing is, there are many swift, direct routes to Brighton from London, including an excellent fast train service. So Londoners assume (as we once did) that it would be even easier to get to Brighton if you lived on the Southeast coast.

It’s not. It’s narrow, twisty backroads and lots of them.

And then we got lost in Brighton and couldn’t find parking (and when we did, it was nearly £10 for three hours). And then the Polish cab driver dropped us off in the wrong place and swore it was the right place.

To our surprise, there was not a meal on offer, so we were forced — forced — to burn through the snack table like buzz-saws, stuffing our faces with Pringles and Doritos and reduced-fat chive-flavored Philadelphia cream cheese. It was oddly homely.

And the way back was everything the way there had been, plus fog. I mean, a real Sherlock Holmes / Jack the Ripper, cotton-wool thing off the sea. We kept an eye out for the Phantom Hitch-hiker.

Anyhoo, it’s 12:30 and we’re just in. If I’m going to maintain the sacred tradition of getting puking drunk for St Paddy, I’d better hurry up.

There’s not an Irish bone in my body, but I believe in observing the sacraments.


Comment from Uncle Badger
Time: March 18, 2010, 12:38 am

And may I just add that if anyone wants to see what a city looks like once unwashed hippies and Marxists seize power, try Brighton.

It, like London, should serve as a warning to all about the ‘Green’ menace.

Comment from Can’t hark my cry
Time: March 18, 2010, 2:01 am

But–you did ultimately meet up with the client, yes? The suspense. . .it’s killing me!

Comment from Scubafreak
Time: March 18, 2010, 2:34 am

UB, I usually just have to go to Boulder, although Boulder does have far richer hippies living there. They like to keep it clean and tidy for when the “Less Fortunate in Society” come to visit….

Comment from Nina from GCP
Time: March 18, 2010, 2:59 am

This is one thing that I really appreciate in this country that I’ve discovered cannot be relied upon elsewhere: you can actually GET places, mostly directly, usually on freeways. And you can drive fairly fast to get there in reasonable time. People in England cannot imagine going, for example, from where I live near Sacramento 3.5 hours away to visit my sister in Salinas for the weekend.

They’d likely not be able to drive the same distance in 3.5 hours in the first place, and couldn’t afford the gas in the second.

I Looooove this country.

Comment from See-Dubya
Time: March 18, 2010, 3:03 am

God pardon us, nor harden us; we did not see so clear
The night we went to Bannockburn by way of Brighton Pier.

Comment from Scubafreak
Time: March 18, 2010, 3:12 am

LOL…. For some reason, See-Dubya’s comment reminded me that Olivia Wilde’s maiden name was Olivia Cockburn…..


(what can I say, I’m watching ‘House’ Season 5 on my laptop between customer calls)

Comment from Rich Rostrom
Time: March 18, 2010, 5:40 am

“And may I just add that if anyone wants to see what a city looks like once unwashed hippies and Marxists seize power, try Brighton.”

A damn shame. I was in Brighton in 1987 (for the World Science Fiction Convention) and it seemed perfectly nice in a downmarket way.

When was Brighton seized by the Fifth International?

Comment from David Gillies
Time: March 18, 2010, 5:59 am

There’s an odd disparity in the south of England between north/south routes and east/west routes. It’s true for trains as well as roads. London distorts everything. Kent is quite well-served but that’s really because of the Channel. Southampton is oddly marooned – it’s quicker to get to the airport via Portsmouth (which is my reference point for going anywhere in southern England.) You can do Portsmouth to Heathrow in not much more than 90 minutes, but Portsmouth to Gatwick (which is closer) will probably take twice that if you hit traffic. Wilts, Devon and Cornwall have no motorway to speak of. Portsmouth to Bath is 70 miles as the crow flies, but count on two or three hours to get there. To get to the Sussex coast from Portsmouth by train it’s often quicker to go up to London on the Intercity, take the Tube from Waterloo to Victoria, and take the fast train down to Brighton. Northern Home Counties are much more accessible- getting to Reading or Swindon or Milton Keynes is easy. Things are improving; the A3 Hindhead bypass tunnel will be opened in a year or so which will be a huge leap forward, but there’s still a long way to go.

Comment from St. Feargal Fitz-Ferret, The Irish Mustelid
Time: March 18, 2010, 1:03 pm

> There’s not an Irish bone in my body

Aye, me lass, but the night is still young!

Comment from S. Weasel
Time: March 18, 2010, 3:13 pm

Heh. Ferret wins the thread.

Thing is, David — as I remind myself — the lack of easy transportation routes is the reason there are so many lovely, unspoiled places in the South of England.

Comment from Uncle Badger
Time: March 18, 2010, 3:28 pm

The problem in the UK, leaving aside considerations of how many lanes there are on a road or, indeed, even how many roads there are, is that driving in Britain has now become anxiety-producing misery.

Since the filthy cabal of Scottish socialists fiddled their way into power, the number of motorists busted for (mostly) trivial offences has risen by a reported 219 per cent.

Thus isn’t drink driving or dangerous driving we’re talking about, it’s straying into a designated ‘bus lane’ in a town you’ve never been to before, being spotted on a cctv camera by some immigrant oaf in STASI headquarters and receiving a £60 ticket through the post two weeks later. Or worse.

In 2006, 1.7 million of us were scalped that way.

Aided by the teeth-sucking, head-shaking, purse-lipped nannies (who are all too common in this country), the Greens and their Marxist allies are now scalping ordinary drivers to the tune of many millions off pounds, every year.

For the most part, the money goes straight to local councils, who calculatedly use ‘Green’ lies to raise money for their socialist plans – and so-called ‘Conservative’ councils are absolutely no better than Labour ones in this respect.

The net result is that if you drive anywhere in Britain, you can’t escape the pervading sense that you are being watched and recorded (as you are) and that if you make the slightest error, you stand a very good chance of being forced to hand over money (or even your license) to these bandits, who are, in the name of what they call ‘safety’, mugging you at will.

And why aren’t we British decorating these very same roads with politicians and the scum who serve them, dangling from lampposts? Why is the piano wire industry not booming?

Because 100 years of socialism and welfarism have turned us into a nation of acquiescent, apathetic, ovine, numbskulls, who put up with this totalitarianism because we are too cowed and conformist to punch on the nose every local candidate who comes calling for our votes.

And if you detect the vaguest hint of a scintilla of a warning in this rant, then good. This is the exactly the future that Kenyan crook has in mind for you.

Believe me, you can go from relative freedom to state-monitored electronically facilitated control in the blinking of an eye these days. Ten years is all it takes.

Comment from Sporadic Small Arms Fire
Time: March 18, 2010, 6:21 pm

In ten years the underdocumented federal worker of Kenyan roots will be the Exulted Chairman of United Nations, Dear Organizer of Zimbabwean Communities For Life and NYT multiple bestseller topic.

I have already said that the worst thing to happen to the Britisher Isles was a premature withdrawal of Roman military. It was all downhill from there. In my view, the Britishers will meekly self-impose even higher taxation levels on the few remaining productive idealists. And then invite even more freeloading roaches with engorged reproductive gonads.
Instead of venting, maybe you ought to relish how free you still are, dear Badger.
After all, what are your options?
You are not considering fleeing to the land of opportunity (even if somewhat clouded by Fresh Kenyan Prince’s paw-prints?), are you?

I imagine a website already: Her Maj’s Badger in the Suburbs of Cleveland. Or: My Own New Burrow in Rocky Idaho.
Spotted a few rockchucks. Friend or foe? Flee or fornicate?

This ought to be semi-decent.

Comment from Uncle Badger
Time: March 18, 2010, 8:01 pm

SSAF – what, leap from the sizzling frying pan into a fire busily being stoked?

It may be, as some claim, that the best left Britain to populate the Empire, leaving the old place inherently weak. Looking at Seth Efrika or Zimbabwe, or Oz, I doubt that.

It may be that the USA has a unique blend of cultures and systems which means it will defy the headlong rush to perdition.

I hope (and almost believe) that’s true. Then I remember that the overwhelming majority of nuttery (from political correctness, to eco-wackery) actually comes from the rebel colonies in the first place.

So maybe not. Hubris keeps a watching eye on us all.

Comment from Gromulin
Time: March 18, 2010, 9:20 pm

Well, and we’re constitutionally allowed to be armed to the teeth. That has tended to keep MOST socialists in their place (Academia, Janitorial, Civil Service)…until recently.

But WE are the ones with no place to flee. If it all hits the proverbial fan, at least we will have some leverage to convince our ‘betters’ to think twice before taking any massive moves towards statism (in the European sense)And that’s the sad part.

Comment from Uncle Badger
Time: March 18, 2010, 9:44 pm

I know a lot of people in the UK would think that what you’ve said is tantamount to madness, Gromulin, but I happen to agree with you – and very strongly. I’m not the only one, either.

They should fear us not vice versa.

Comment from Sporadic Small Arms Fire
Time: March 18, 2010, 9:45 pm

The fire is being stoked amply, I freely concur. But when it gets too hot, the +/-200M privately owned 2nd Amendment hardware kits will start to combust/cook off. We already had one fratricidal episode (when the north invaded) and each next is easier. On your blightey isle, the very bravest .5% may talk about knapping some flint. An asymmetric occurence of the most undesirable kind to witness.

I grieve over ZA as well. It is horrible what has been done to this beautiful land, and the complicity of commie paleskin traitors is horrid.

If anything will somewhat “right” the Federalist Colonies (that’s be us, I mean, US) it will not be “the blend of our cultures”. It will be greed. Someone said “this fhit will go on until we run out of money… and then we’ll get really, really mad”. This may be true. But in the short run, it will get worse around here, I am not debating that in the leastest.

Far grander erstwhile civilizations than yours or mine are desiccated stage props by now. It does not seem feasible that a system like our American experiment may ever re-occur elsewhere. It is more the reason to never spare any Weasel maintenance, as a fine Weasel is harder to behold than Haley’s comet. Raw salmon for shiny coat, some varmints for variety, plenty of exercise to fight depression and plenty of attention to keep him focused.

Do not mention Marmots within earshot.

Comment from Scubafreak
Time: March 18, 2010, 10:09 pm

Stoatie. I know you like Scotch, so I have a question. have you tried Glen Moray, and was it any good?

Comment from Gromulin
Time: March 18, 2010, 10:18 pm

Meh. I’ve been called worse. Let the Eurolefties say what they will about our RKBA. It means nothing to us. That’s what makes them so mad!

Last weekend I was at the range, and about a quarter of the lanes were occupied by folks from the former Soviet sphere of influence. They get it. Big time. They know what happens when the Citizen becomes the Subject.

Comment from S. Weasel
Time: March 18, 2010, 10:52 pm

I haven’t tried it, Scoob. Which reminds me…I have to finish the scotch miniatures Uncle B bought me for Christmas.

Not totally disarmed, Brits. You can still get a shotgun, if you jump through the hoops. Out here in the country, there’s a goodly number of them.

Comment from Scubafreak
Time: March 19, 2010, 12:12 am

Hell, the average Brit would look at me like I was the head of the IRA if they got a look in my closet…..

Or my liquor cabinet, for that matter…..

Comment from Gromulin
Time: March 19, 2010, 3:08 am

I’d love to shoot a round of clays in England some day. I’d love to rub elbows with those hardy souls willing to jump through those hoops!

Comment from Allen
Time: March 19, 2010, 5:51 am

Fog LADWP style, foul night. So, I’m a touch south of Owens Lake and when the winds blow from the north, alkali dust. The interesting part is that LA has created the worst environmental disaster in the state. Drain a lake, kill a wetlands, no worries the carwashes are open.

But I still lummee the Sierras, here is someone’s pic from the road up to Horseshoe Meadow. July this year due to the global warming huge snow pack. Good times, from there south to home, 80 miles.

In the Jimmy Buffet spirit, “My ass hurts, my horse stinks, and I don’t love ridin’…”


Write a comment

(as if I cared)

(yeah. I'm going to write)

(oooo! you have a website?)

Beware: more than one link in a comment is apt to earn you a trip to the spam filter, where you will remain -- cold, frightened and alone -- until I remember to clean the trap. But, hey, without Akismet, we'd be up to our asses in...well, ass porn, mostly.

<< carry me back to ol' virginny