Cardington Airsheds

The hangers at Cardington were built to house the great airships which would have revolutionised air travel. However, airships were filled with explosive hydrogen gas and several airships exploded resulting in airships as a form of mass transport being akin to walking down the motorway.

The sheds, I believe, are currently on the English Heritage At Risk register. This doesn’t mean that they are inappropriate towards children, but more that they are at risk of falling down. I also understand that one of the airsheds is currently home to HAV1, a project aiming to redevelop and restart airship transport using modern materials and science.

I’ve often seen the airsheds from the road connecting the M1 to Bedford but today I got really close. It is, of course, illegal and very difficult to take photographs while driving, so instead I tried to imitate the quality of doing so from a stationary car. Honest.
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Remember remember the time when Britain nearly became a republic again.

The times were hard. The King, an absolute tyrant. People were hauled from their homes by swat teams of government troops, tried in mockeries of the court and executed. Purely because of their beliefs and ideals.

One group of prominent English men had had enough. The king and his tyranny must go. The last time they had done this ended in regicide. The Kings replacement, a religious nutter who made fun illegal. This time it had to be just right.

Only it went wrong. Their plot was discovered, the plotters executed and tortured in a way that made Guantanamo look like a week in Butlin’s. Their failed act of blowing up the King and his sympathisers forever commemorated in British memory. Guy Fawkes night. Bonfire night or Firework night.

Crucially, the day is remembered for the failed plot and the continued reign of the tyrannical monarchy. The one last attempt to rid the land of an unelected head of state. A celebration of the fact the plot failed. But how would Britain have faired if it hadn’t failed? Would the empire ever have risen? Would the world have been a different place? Of course it would.

We will never know of course.

Surnames

For some time now I have been fascinated by the origins of surnames (or last names if you want to be all modern and right on). My own surname Gnomepants stems from the Greek Gnomos Pantalonkikos which is a trade that was popular in ancient Greece. People would flock to ancient Athens and Crete to visit the numerous Gnomos Pantalonkikos and inspect their handicrafts. I think Plato said “My Gods! The Gnomos Pantalonkikos in my street is the best!”. At one time one of my ancestors would have been a Gnomos Pantalonkikos and we all know how important they were to the development of civilisation.

Butcher
Butcher (n) – to be a butcher
Heaton-Harris (n) - Wanksplat
Heaton-Harris (n) old Swahili – Wanksplat

So likewise when I come across unusual names I like to look them up (on google & wikipedia) in an effort to locate their origins. Today, I was dealing with a person that goes by the name of Spink. Now Spink is an unusual name from my perspective. I don’t know you might know lots of Spinks, in which case it won’t be all that unusual to you. I know several people called Grobinglops which is quite common though some would argue that they don’t know anyone called Grobinglops and they might find the name Grobinglops unusual. But anyway….that’s by the by. So I look them up and I think “oooh I wonder what their ancestors must have done. So for example someone called Colin Computersalesman would obviously have descended from a prominent Barrel maker. Likewise David Butcher would have been descended from a butcher, Barry Bumscrape – a tramp and Simon Quantumphysicist would most likely have been a quantity surveyor. You get the idea don’t you. Maybe you have a occupational surname too….I know that the likes of Sean Bean would be descended from a bean (maybe he was planted and grew) and Gordon Honeycomb would more than likely have been related to some ancient piece of a bee hive or something.

You get what I’m on about. So I looked up Spink on Wikipedia and I learnt a new thing. So I thought I would share that with you. According to Wikipedia (and yes I know that contrary to popular belief Wikipedia is not 100% reliable) a spink is the formal name for human meat! So at one time this Spink person would have come from a family of food. I can imagine them sitting in the tribal village during the harsh winter months.

Mr Chieftan – We’re so cold. All the meat and food has been eaten. What shall we do?
Mr Advisor – Well why not have a reserve of meat in the village. Fresh meat. How about that family over there? They worked hard in the fields this summer so they’re all nice and muscley. No sinew or fat on them. We could eat them!
Mr Chieftan – Who the Spinks? Well yes! I don’t like the way they look at me anyway

And so it happened, the villagers were eaten and a name gained a meaning.

Making the world a better place – Part one

Love you Jim xx
Bloody hippy!

Bloody hippies. Sitting there in their kaftans with their long hair and beards, weaving yogurts and floating vaginas. Why can’t they be pissed off and angry like everyone else.

Yes. Why not? I mean its such a lovely world isn’t it. People hating each other, blaming each other, being nasty to each other and complaining about anything to anybody who will listen and then complaining further when people don’t listen.

We have just had elections. Elections where every person who is angry with the current state of affairs in Europe and the UK took out their frustrations on the government by either not voting or by voting for far right loons. Great job! I’m sure we’ll laugh about it when jackbooted fucktards come a knocking to evict us from our homes for none compliance.

 

empty vessels
Some noisy things

Of course there is a saying. Empty vessels make the most noise. Indeed,  this saying when applied to the current political landscape seems to ring true. Furthermore, this saying applies across all aspects of society. Just look at any newspaper (or news website) and you’ll read about how bad things are. How people in power are horrid. How people who do things do things selfishly or for the rubbing of their own ego, gain and gratification.

But what’s the one thing you don’t read about?

Nice people.

People doing good things.

Years ago, and I think I’ve already written about this before, people with lots and lots of money would look about and say:

“Fuck me, I have so much money from building railways/transporting slaves/eating jam <delete as applicable> I don’t know what to do with it!”

Then, armed with wads of cash they would do good things like building churches, hospitals, libraries, club houses or starting mutual societies and cooperatives. Benevolence. Generosity. All for eternal recognition.

 

This was actually built in memory of some bloke who died during a fox hunt.
A monument

In the UK at least, one only has to take a trip into their nearest town and find monuments to people who have donated or sacrificed something for the benefit of others. Did people moan about that then I wonder? Did the newspapers of the time bemoan the fact that some great benefactor donated land for use as a municipal park? Did people tut and mutter about it? Surely that land would be better used as a factory? Maybe? Who knows? I can’t be arsed to do the research but I imagine it wasn’t like that.

These days, being nasty gets you fame. Being awful and frightful gets you instant celebrity status, or so it seems. To me it seems that being awful and frightful is de rigueur . Think about it, companies don’t have compliments departments do they? Why is this? It is because there is more benefit in providing a shit service and employing people who spend all their day depleting their self-worth levels by listening to people blame them personally for the lack of service or whatever. I know, I used to be one of those employees.

So how can we turn the world into a better place? How can I get people to be nicer to each other? How can I get recognition for good deeds done to humanity?

 

You’ll just have to come back later and read all about it.

International Fib Day

““The great masses of the people will more easily fall victims to a big lie than to a small one.”” – Adolf Hitler

It’s been years since I did an International Fib Day. Ok I did a poll last year and the day has moved around more than a cigarette lighter in a washing machine but I think it is time for one today.

In reaction to something on the telly the other night, zoefruitcake asked if I thought the moon landings were real. My shortened reply was “yet to be convinced”. You see the way I see it is that ever since like wayyy before the second world war, whoever has been in administration in Washington over the years has enjoyed telling big fibs. And, as my mother always told me, if you tell lies eventually nobody will believe you.

The longer version might have gone something like this. Sorry if this upsets anyone.

“There’s gold in them hills” – nope…if there was its all gone now, but now you’re on the Western Sea board, you might as well stay and populate the area yeah?

“The Japs did it first so we hit back” – If you poke a stick at a nest of hornets, don’t be surprised if you get stung.

“They’re probably commies” – Just because you like to share bags of sweets with people doesn’t necessarily make you a “commie”, besides, what’s wrong with sharing the wealth as long as
everyone does the same amount of work? Isn’t that what social security is?

“We decoded the enemy’s codes because we pinched something off a submarine” – No you didn’t, it was the Brits. All you did was make a film about it. With actors.

“Aliens aliens aliens” – A documentary I saw this week suggested that there was more evidence to prove that the suggestion of alien abduction, UFOs and cattle mutilations was actually a smoke screen used by black operations run by the military so they could get away with doing all manner of odd shit and get it put down as the ramblings of some weird hick. It was quite a compelling argument. Especially when the documentary was followed by Fourth Kind

“Them damned Eyerakkies have WMDs and have been giving them to the Tally Bahn in Afghanistan” – Have they really? Is WMD a code word for oil? Or natural mineral resources?

“The spill is the worst ever” – Tell that to the Nigerians yeah?

“Elvis is dead” – yeah? Then who’s that working in my local chippy?

“Jackson is dead” – Yeah? The who’s that lurking round the local kiddies school?

“This specially ionised water is healthier than ordinary water” – ding ding…hear that? That’s the sound of my other leg.

Anyway, you get the idea. So it comes as no surprise that unless I can see the proof for myself, I’m not going to believe a word that comes out of the mouths of certain Western governments. You know like go to the moon myself and see the foot prints and “Neil wuz ‘ere” written on a rock. After all I’ve seen Capricorn One. I remain…unconvinced. Has man been to the moon? Maybe they have, maybe they haven’t. Think about it, how implausible is sticking 3 men onto the back of a stick of explosives, shooting them into the sky to travel through an airless vaccuum, land on a ball of cheese and send back some grainy holiday snaps before bringing them all the way back again. What ever next?

But as we are all human, it comes as no surprise that we all, at some point, tell fibs. Even if we are governments or just the little people. Its fun to fib. It’s fun to spin yarns. And the point of International Fibs Day is to tell me the most outrageous fib you can possibly fib all guilt and conscience trouble free.

You may do so in comments.

Landscape

If I fell through a hole in time and travelled back 45 years. If I then looked out of my bedroom window across the field behind the lane with no name and beyond the field behind the field behind the lane with no name, not only would I have upset Mrs Edson’s daughter, but I would have seen the winch wheel of a pit stack.

Long but because I am nice I posted it here as well as on blogspot

>Landscape

>

If I fell through a hole in time and travelled back 25 years. If I then looked out of my bedroom window across the field behind the lane with no name and beyond the field behind the field behind the lane with no name, not only would I have upset Mrs Edson’s daughter, but I would have seen the winch wheel of a pit stack.

As pinched from BAPIPHad I then gone downstairs and beyond the rear door of San Tor, tootled down the lane with no name and onto the corner of Church Street and Common Road I would probably have been able to see one of the largest collieries in the UK stretching out in the distance before me. There would have been power stations, winch houses, the constant drone of colliery activity and the like.

I would probably have seen a constant pedestrian traffic of orange overalls walking down the hill into Grimethorpe wherein those wearing the overalls would probably have stepped into a cage and travelled deep below the ground for a day of mining. In fact, had I gone to any number of places around the neighbourhood I would have seen similar sights of industrial activity. Trains and lorries laden with coal bound for the steel mills and power stations that peppered the vista.

People at a market I would have seen people milling about; doing their daily business with smiles upon their faces asking after neighbours and discussing Morecambe and Wise or some such. These same people would have been unaware of the devastation they would face over the next fifteen years or so. When their livelihoods were taken away from them by a government leader bent on revenge for the winter of discontent. A way to quell the voices of discontent and the socialism which threatened their brave new world.

Spin forward through time once more and where there was employment, there is but social decay in the shape of unemployment, bigotry and drug use. Houses that once were grand now look tatty and unkempt. Parades of shops that once boasted green grocers, fishmongers and butchers now stand boarded up and empty or populated by takeaways and offices of antidrug and employment building social enterprise groups. The contrast is vast.

2863774968_178f84e4be Travel to Liverpool 30 years ago and similar sights would have been seen, instead of coal miners you would have seen dock workers. Sheffield and Doncaster, steel workers. Newcastle, ship builders. The Midlands, motor industry.  An industrial past so memorable yet so long gone.  All gone. Thanks to the brave new world instigated by the Thatcher and perpetuated by the Blair governments.

Sure, industry would have struggled to compete with low cost foreign imports. It was a natural shift from production to service industries. However the speed in which the transition took place was so swift that few were prepared for the following years. This wasn’t 100 years ago, this was twenty to thirty years ago. Heck, even during my education traditional jobs such as butcher, baker, factory worker and the like were still discussed. Now, most of these jobs don’t exist.

Who to blame? The governments? They were the ones that set this passage in motion. The people? Reluctant to pay more for goods produced on home ground they would prefer cheaper imports to paying to maintain other peoples lives. Nobody? A natural transition that occurred as predicted by Marx? I can only speculate.

But what is clear is that since the industry was taken away very little has been put in place since. Sure Liverpool’s main industry now is education and tourism. Sheffield’s it could be argued is sport and culture. But places like the Midlands and Barnsley remain places difficult to find work in. Even the brief respite of call centres which have since been outsourced overseas only provided negligible difference.

As the population continues to grow unsustainably. The economy will continue to falter. Socialist ideals such as national health care and education  now too expensive at current prices will require more and more funding. The future is bleak, the future is most certainly not orange. Taxes need to increase. With increases in taxes, salaries will need to be increased. As salaries increase so will the drain on GDP. Inflation increases, held off artificially by government backing supermarkets and industry will surge and rocket, things will be bad.

Let’s think about a pie. Mmmmm pie. It is a nice pie. We all want a slice of this pie but some want bigger slices than others because they think they deserve a bigger slice. So to cater for the demand on pie we bake a bigger pie. But then people say that they want a piece of the pie that is comparative to the slice they think they deserve. The circle continues.

But let us go back to South Yorkshire and look around.

Think of the seaside town that is no longer popular with tourists. The once grand and splendid arcades now shuttered or populated by pound shops. The streets of dilapidated guest and boarding houses now multi occupancy dwellings inhabited by ne’er-do-wells, the down at heel and misguided immigrants. Pensioners wander the streets or sit outside once proud homes dreaming of times past when the new housing estate was once the local lido. Think of how this once popular place was alive with people happy and at peace now degraded, it’s heart ripped out by cheap foreign holidays. Then consider this seaside town land locked. You might now be imagining somewhere similar to Grimethorpe, Goldsthorpe, Mexborough and the like. Once proud pit villages populated by hard working proud people with facilities to cater for them provided by the pit owners.

Take the pit away and these places become that landlocked seaside town. The streets once burgeoning with shops now boast 1001 curries, kebabs and tanning salons. The schools once constructed in an age when architects considered the art of the building design instead of functionality now empty, burnt out or demolished. The churches whose congregations once boasted over 200 parishioners per service, now guarded by razor wire and awful looking grills to protect the already damaged stained glass windows. The pit itself, long cleared away, the ancillary buildings few of which remain are but depots for reclamation yards or meeting places for drug addicts and the destitute.

This is the brave new post war post industrial England. Sure there are sleepy villages, vibrant cities and bustling market towns in well to do areas, but for every Harrogate, there are many more Grimethorpes. These deprived areas like a rot will take a lot more than money, social schemes and the like to treat. With the decline goes pride, with pride lost there is little but apathy, with apathy comes decay. The wealthy international companies know this and they feast on the decay with their burger shops, their big name brand supermarkets, their "you must buy this because you need it" attitudes. Sucking the communities dry of the wealth which is then sent south or overseas and not reinvested in the local communities. We really only have ourselves to blame.


Cross posted to my Livejournal.

Stupid! Running on a bank

Oh dear. Looks like Britain is suffering from a case of the stupids. I can sympathise but, as I see it, all this panicking will do is just reduce the price of the stockmarket shares and bring about financial instability.

Links to: BBC News article about Northern Rock.

Times and How They Change

Thirty years ago

stegzy – I WANT IT NOW!! I DON’T WANT TO WAIT WAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA NOW NOW NOW. I WANT NODDY NOW!!!!!

Twenty Years Ago

stegzyWow! Like hey! See that box…that’s an RM Nimbus PC and when I grow up I’m going to have twenty of them. one in each room of my house. I can’t wait! I’m so excited!

Ten Years Ago

stegzy – W0h dude! Like I’m really excited about the new Mike Oldfield CD, the forth coming games for the Amiga, going out, getting laid and getting smashed dude! .

Present Day

stegzyI say chaps! I’m quite chipper about having a spangly new carpet fitted today. Gosh!