Blaming the environmentalists, part 32768
So the main railway line just north of Dawlish has finally lost its battle with the sea. A million people in Devon and Cornwall suddenly have no rail link with the rest of the UK. This million includes Plymouth, southern home of our nuclear submarine fleet (and if Scotland votes for independence, the only one). And who is to blame? Why, those pesky tree-huggers of course, according to the Torygraph. Yes, the Environment Agency apparently delayed strengthening the sea wall pending a bird count.

But, dear reader, the delay was not of the Environment Agency's making. This has been coming for years.

The stretch of railway line is familiar from every storm story in the news, where clips of waves crashing over a train always makes for dramatic viewing. Many times the cliff behind the track has had minor landslips, closing the line for short periods. In 2006 Anthony Steen, MP for nearby Totnes, foretold the loss of the coastal line. In 2011 the issue of the line was raised by the County Council, with their concerns rebuffed by Network Rail and the Environment Minister, who claimed there was nothing to worry about - "there is no immediate risk to the rail line at Dawlish for the next 20 years."

The fact that any work done would, of course, have had to wait until the spring and summer is moot. The conservatives have their scapegoat, stuffed and mounted over the Regency fireplace of warm smugness.

NaNoWriMo is a piece of cake
Dirk Handsome strode manfully into the room. Wanda Doomey, his beautiful secretary, caught his manful attention. "The boss wants to see you now." He glowered manfully at her and strode manfully into his bosses office, where T. Stratford Horsebreeder stood importantly, looking out of his important window and puffing an important cigar. "I have work for you, Handsome," he said. "New York. You leave tonight."

"Is it...him?" asked Dirk.


So Dirk flew manfully to New York and did some stuff and, ooh, dinosaurs or something, then he had a pie and chips and then he went home.

This is easy!

handbag contents
Door key
Perfume x2
Mascara x2
Loose change (which has gone over ten pounds once or twice)
Tic tacs
Nail polish x3
Memory stick
Great wodges of old receipts and bus tickets :s
...and a tube of E45

Optional extras:
Book (usually history or mysticism)
Spare knickers
Audio jack adapter
Jar of coffee in case the place I volunteer at has run out - it's a mile from the shop

Maybe I should ditch the handbag and get a wheelbarrow?

Swimming in the rain
I've taken up wild swimming. It's great. there are many hidden nooks and crannies by the river where I can go and have a swim undisturbed, and be surrounded by nature. Sure it's cold but it's ok once you're in. Yesterday it was raining as i went in and it's lovely to hear the rain fall on the water all around you. Keep your foot on the riverbed for long enough and a fish will come an enquire at it. I haven't swum for years, I hate the noise and chlorine of swimming pools. this place is great.

Totnes: the town that declared war on global capitalism
Welcome to another chapter in the ongoing battle between places that pride themselves on their local character, and the great stomping boot of multinational capitalism. That it is happening in Totnes (population: 7,500) is hardly surprising: long renowned as a byword for sustainable living and imaginative local politics, it also the home of the Transition Towns movement, focused not just on the way that people and places use fossil fuels, but how to make local economies more resilient by encouraging independent business, and fighting the kind of big interests that tend to take out more than they put in. Their most famous innovation is the Totnes Pound, a home-grown currency that is accepted by more than 70 local businesses.

A town with 42 independent coffee outlets obviously knows where its towel is!

Well now I can neither comment, message, post, like or delete anything on facebook. Please don't bother trying to contact me there. In fact posting via livejournal is the only way of sending messages to anybody. Sign up here guys! We have a goat!

Scottish DNA has wide-ranging roots
This reminds me of something I read long ago (IRIS alert!) that the Welsh have some phoenician ancestry.

"The explanation is simple. We are a people on the edge of beyond; on the end of a massive continent. Peoples were migrating northwest; and they couldn't get any further. We have collected them."

It's the porridge, you know!

mmm penis fish

And in Chinese cuisine, where they are often dried and powdered to be used as a flavour enhancer, the penis fish’s savoury taste should probably be used as evidence for the old adage of ‘don’t judge a book by its cover’.

More (not safe for lunchtime)

No facebook account? That's suspicious

Meanwhile, in Dorset...
Man sets underpants on fire by trying to dry them out in the microwave.

"The fire safety message here is to never put clothing of any kind in the microwave or an oven to attempt to dry them." No shit.

In other news, I am meeting somebody tomorrow. It is not a date. Absolutely not. At all.


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