Going the extra mile.

I’m trying to think what exciting things have happened in my sabbatical.

Well, last week I had a bump at Iceland. That was an utter downer.

Some berk parked his van just where I needed to put my cab for the reverse. I had to swing the trailer around one building and between it and another. Because it was a roof top delivery they also had 2 feet tall barriers to protect the buildings. Rather than ask the van driver to move (which, in retrospect is what I should have done) I screwed the trailer in really tight. Unfortunately I lost side of the barrier on the blind side and caught it with the mudguard of the unit. Balls.

I think that’s my Iceland driving finished.

It’s one of those situations where you are just looking at the hanging off mudguard and kicking yourself. Not a thing you can do about it. Balls, balls, balls.

That was supposed to be a quick shift last Saturday. With waiting for the mechanic and the bodge fix it turned into nearly 13 hours.

The long and short of which is I didn’t get to run last weekend.


The weekend before I did the first 10 mile lap, then one lap of the 14 mile route then it rained on me and I lost my mojo. I’d gone at it too hard and fast (about 3½ hour marathon pace) and crashed suddenly. Plus the new energy powder I got at nearly half the price of my usual has the unfortunate side effect of knocking you sick. This is doubly bad as it gives you an aversion to drinking it, hence a failure to hydrate. Also, with the training as I’m doing it, the laps start and finish at home. This means you need massive mental strength to force yourself back out the door when you are already in a bad state.

However, after that pitiful 24 mile effort I resolved to do it right next time.


Today was next time. I set my sites on the full 50 miles. Ambitious, as it would only be my second run over marathon length, but as one of the mantras states; “You are the only person who can say you can’t do it. And you don’t have to listen”.

So off I jolly well trotted. I did an 8 mile lap, then I planned to do the 14 mile lap thrice. I’ve ordered some trail running trainers with a goretex top, supposed to be waterproof. They haven’t arrived yet though. So obviously it poured down and there were loads of puddles. My trainers were soaked after the first 14 mile lap so my feet were rapidly ruined. The rest of me was soaked as well, but that’s not too much of a problem in warm weather. I managed 2 laps but I just couldn’t face sloshing my way back along the canal path again. At the point where the path turns off to our house or carries on if you want to do the 10 mile route I carried on. If I’d have gone home, soaked and shattered, I would have quit. After 40 miles it suddenly goes from being painful hard work to almost unbearable misery. Happily by then my feet had come up in a million blisters which promptly burst, so walking was more painful than running. I shuffled the last 6 miles. It was so, so bad.

Anyway, that’s 46 miles done. It took me 8.29 so I have five hours in the bag to crawl the last 4 miles. It may come to that.


Today, (Sunday) has been fun already. When you casually swing your legs out of bed then they refuse to stand up. Hobbling to the loo. Ho hum. Whaddaya gonna do?


Also while I’ve been away I’ve had a very frustrating line of thought. I went to Sainsbury’s to get my free range chicken (for my low carb curry) and they had my usual £5.50 one and a dearer free range one. Upon closer examination the Freedom Food’s one I’ve been getting is RSPCA monitored indoors chickens. Bollocks.

So I got the dearer chickens. £6 and nearly £7. When I mentioned it to Wendy she said they are still stuffed with growth hormones and such, the only way to get a proper chicken is to get free range organic and they are about £12 a bird!

Suddenly I got to thinking about rabbit. More specifically, I got to thinking about bagging some bunnies myself. The Country File website said it’s good eating and that rabbits are increasing their number by 2% every year so need to be kept in check. For the price of an air rifle you’ve got free, totally organic, absolutely free range lean meat for life.  

This struck me as genius.

Then the frustration started.

They have changed all the laws since I was a kid. Then you grabbed a rifle, popped it in a gun bag then shot the shit out of anything you fancied, anywhere.

Not so anymore. You are not allowed to shoot on public land, and if you are caught on private land with a rifle, even if it’s in the gun bag unloaded, you can be charged with armed trespass! Up to £1000 fine, 3 months in jail, and confiscation and destruction of your rifle.


Then I read up on hunting permission. Apparently it’s like gold dust. As a journalist on a air rifle forum said, it’s like having a stranger knock on your door and ask to play in your garden as they don’t have one.

Which leaves me in catch 22, I need an air rifle to practise my shooting so I can get permission to bag bunnies, but I need somewhere to practise my shooting before I can ask for permission to start bagging bunnies. If you see what I mean.

The real thing that’s holding me back though is the potential interacting with people. It seems the best approach is to send letters to all the local farms, but then, if anyone was interested, I’d have to turn up and be all sociable.

Well, that’s on the back burner for now. The rifles are a bleeding fortune for a start. It’s loads cheaper to buy a shotgun or a real rifle, but for those you need a firearms certificate, lockable cabinet and pre-agreed shooting permission. Again.


In shock news, I’ve had a hair cut! It was getting on my tits having sweaty hair after the ride in to work and having it flopping about when I was training. I had the genius idea of putting it in a bobble and cutting the length off. But wait, you cry, that will leave it long at the front and short at the back!

Way ahead of you. I put the bobble on the top of my head.

Which left it long everywhere apart from on the top of my head.


So I hacked at all the long bits.

Surprisingly this made it worse.

I know, I was amazed as well.

I decided to go to a hairdresser and get it all to one length. The local one looked good enough so I said “I want a trim” she said she’d see if there was a stylist free, here’s the prices; £28!

Nah, bit steep, I’ll leave it.

So I went to a barbers. I said “just straighten it up” by which I meant ‘cut it all to a standard length, please mr barber’.

He obviously had his own ideas of what constitutes straight. He gave me a short back and sides. I’ve not looked like this since I was 12!


The first shows that it doesn’t lie flat when brushed back, the second show what happens as soon as it rains.

I am growing it as fast as ever I can. I may sleep with my head in a bag of compost.

Woe onto the house of Bucky.


Anyway, today we have more funness planned. We are going to Bent’s garden centre in a bit. We popped in last Sunday on the way back from a run out to Bolton. It was a bit of a fail day that. I realised I no longer had my better pair of trainers and was running in my old uncomfortable ones. I worked it back to when I’d last had them and it was when I’d ridden to Bolton, changed from my cycling shoes to trainers and did the hill run. Then I changed back. My trainers didn’t make it back to the house so I’m guessing I got distracted and left them there. We went back, like I say, but they were gone. Then we nipped to Bent’s on the way back, just in time to see how massive and impressive it has grown then they were closing. Bah.

So, Bent’s today. Then Kick-Ass 2! Apparently the reviews have said it’s not as good, but Hit-Girl. Purple bob wig. Hit-Girl. Got to watch. Then it’s the return of the MotoGP after the long summer break. Huzzah!


Enough of your waffle, what of Twitter?


The DMreporter had;

TRAGIC: Revealed – the 10 sexiest victims of Italian car crash who have Facebook pages with relaxed privacy settings.

HEATWAVE: Evidence of global warming or are the Muslims to blame? We investigate.

SELFISH: Gay couple risk triggering the rapture as they launch a legal challenge to be married in a church.

This week’s Daily Mail Cancer List: Mon) Rape Tue) Misogyny Wed) Violence Thu) Homophobia Fri) Racism Sat) Hate Sun) #TwitterSilence

BREAKING: We break #TwitterSilence to report on #TwitterSilence. Who’s silent? Who’s not? What are they wearing? Why they’re wrong

EXPOSED: “He’s gay!” Former lover makes sensational claims of BBC star Graham Norton on our tell-all interview.

POLITICS: Government eradicates unemployment by creating 2.5million zero-hour contracts.

APPEAL: Has your beloved child killed themselves after being TROLLED TO DEATH? Contact our newsdesk for sensitive and balanced reporting.

BRITAIN IS BOOMING! Reports of a 0.2% rise in interest rates over 2nd quarter of 2013 makes everyone’s life much much much better.

THREAT: ‘Figure hugging’ clothes and short skirts to be banned from school where Jeremy Forrest seduced pupil. Because that’s the problem.

SCIENCE: Why feeling generally contented about life could KILL YOU.

SPORT: Will homophobia at Winter Olympics inspire gay athletes to move faster? Fury over perceived advantage to homosexual competitors.

A-LEVELS: Attractive, white female students celebrate exam results by jumping in the air and waving their hands excitedly (pictures).

CREDIT: Previous headline inspired by special post graduate correspondents @bryanjones63, @pontycyclops and *everyone else* on Twitter.

This weeks Daily Mail Cancer List: Mo) Digital radio Tu) Mud We) Gravy Th) Algebra Fr) Knuckle hair Sa) Crying Su) People called Alan

BREAKING: Diana – we fucking told you so!



In Politics/ Tory scum we had;

BBC news. "Is there common ground between the Israelis and the Palestinians"? There was but the Israelis have taken it. #thisisajoke

After the Tories sent a racist van out saying “Go home illegal immigrants” (but only non-white ones) there were some good replies;

proposed response to the tory #racistvan to be sent round Kensington and Hampstead

"When did it become OK to say ‘Fuck off back to Eton’?" Excuse me while I play the world’s tiniest violin: http://blogs.telegraph.co.uk/news/jakewallissimons/100228971/when-did-it-become-ok-to-say-f-off-back-to-eton/ …

If only Old Etonians had some sort of political structure to represent themselves, or even a voice in media. #solidarity

Strange how they only call it "class war" when it comes from below.

FYI @ukhomeoffice, laying in wait to trap and racially profile "darkies" at tube stations does not constitute a "raid". Illegal and immoral.

Dear @ukhomeoffice, when oh when will you start enforcing the wearing of yellow stars for all brown people? #finalsolution

Clarification: millionaires giving themselves a 2k a week tax cut whilst imposing bedroom tax on ppl on £62 p/w is *not* class war.

I walk past headlines saying ‘city food bank has huge demand’ & remember UK is 7th richest country in the world. Austerity is a lie.

Glad you cleared that up! Israel Chief Rabbi: I only called black people "niggers" because I knew it would get laughs http://www.timesofisrael.com/?p=620198

William Hague says Zimbabwe election result "doesn’t reflect the views of its people". That’s something we have in common then.

If a dog kills someone Tories want even longer prison sentence. Police kill someone they get slap on wrist.

Deaths last year by dangerous dogs? 3. Deaths by drunk driving? 280. Yet the former is the priority?

British Gas profits hit £22 PER SECOND yet refuse to rule out further price rises. Enough greed. Nationalise it, now.

"When I feed the poor, they call me a saint, but when I ask why the poor are hungry, they call me a communist." – Helder Camara

A Trade Union which is happy to be described by an employer as its ‘partner’ is not a Trade Union. Its Judas with a clipboard.

Eric Pickles says bins have made life hell for families. Not depressed wages, benefit cuts, unemployment or housing shortages. But bins.

Is The Thatcher Years really on telly? 2013 was my favourite



And general tweets was as good as ever:

During training cant wait to race, during race can’t wait to rest, during rest and in pain can’t wait to train its a vicious circle #athlete

(I commented:) During training wish I was dead. During race wish I was dead. Recovering wish I was dead. #lardarse #eejit

Greeting your boss with the phrase "Cowabunga!" shows both professionalism and an awareness of contemporary culture.

Just minutes ago! > How one stupid Twitter troll went from abuse to apology in minutes:http://liberalconspiracy.org/2013/07/29/how-on-stupid-twitter-troll-went-from-abuse-to-apology-in-minutes/ 

The pope says its ok to be a gay priest as long as u don’t have sex.next it will be yes to female priests as long as u don’t have a vagina

PlioceneBloke had:

Big attempt of forage nettle but just taste of massive scream gob pain (and:)

Mix dirt mud in big warm stink milk for make massive smell paste of hair spike. Because worth it. (and)

Brick not invent yet, or wall. So all in all just think another caveman in small shrub for now.


I noted some fitness phenomena:

Thirsty lately. Symptom of something dire. Googled it. It’s called ‘riding 22miles in summer syndrome’. At least now I have a name for it.

Also known as ‘chronic hypochondria’. Chronic. See, I knew it was bad.

Saw a plump, red faced, 30+ running woman about to effortlessly overtaken by a skinny, tanned, crop-topped 20 y/o. 1/2

2/2 I was identifying with the fit one when I suddenly realised I’m the fat chick. #gutted

Hour 20 of diet. Considering cannibalism.

Also sports coaching. Ultra training? Put on your trainers, run 38 miles, stop. Next time 50 miles. I take paypal.


I hate seeing women in headscarves like this, such an oppressive world we live in. #creepingsharia

Passwords are hard. They must now contain a capital letter, a number, a plot, a sympathetic protagonist and a twist ending.

Dear World: it can cost thousands for a personalised numberplate, but only £33 to change your name by deed poll. Yours sincerely, SG11 HWT

We live on a windy island surrounded by water. So obviously the answer is more fracking.

I was once thrown out of a porn cinema for being "too vocal" about the continuity errors.

Highlight how immigration is a ticking time-bomb by walking into Sainsburys with an alarm clock in one hand and some explosives in the other

Forget descriptive names – salads in Starbucks have names such as Thai and Mighty, Holy Guacamole and Hail Caesar. I like.

Wiggins showing how crap he’s become by taking 56 seconds out of World TT favourite Cancellara to win Stage 7 #tdp2013

Best Facebook comment:

Perhaps the creepiest family portrait in the history of photography … ever…

Rammstein – Mein Land http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=N1AjjRC4-RU&sns=tw … << A truly great tune. In German.

Then they go all sublime and do it Americanized. Hilarious and brilliant:

nme.com/nme-video/youtube/id/6hSlbNhgoZo …

I got a bit miffed about the Twitter boycott lead by an up her own arse journalist, Caitlin Moran;

Is anyone doing that boycott thing? I mean, "I’m so great that Twitter will implode without me." Really?

This is like that #twittersilence on Remembrance Day. That pisses me off as well. Just don’t like being told how to be angry or respectful.

Have they all gone? Missing them already. Still, at least we can all call them twats with impunity now. #glasshalffull

They were right, Twitter is a hollow shell without them. Devoid of purpose, bereft of wit. #meh

Chemical castration! Chop off their tweeting finger! Make them say they are really, really sorry. #justbeinghelpful

*surveys the bleak and desolate Twitterscape, bereft of a few self important journalists* *tries to give a fuck* *fails* Good morning all.


Others said;

Lost another Caitlin Moran fan, trolliday is always a difficult time of year for me.

I’m boycotting the Twitter boycott tomorrow because I’m THAT much of a hipster

"@thoughtcat: I boycotted Google Plus WAY before social media boycotts were trendy." << I’m boycotting Myspace as well. #hipster

I’m so looking forward to the pundits and columnists writing ‘My day without Twitter’ articles tomorrow

I just don’t understand what’s difficult about using a block. If someone was abusive in real life you’d remove them/yourself from situation

Abuse is NOT OK, but giving someone like Caitlin Moran a ‘Report Abuse’ button is like giving a toddler a mallet in a room full of hamsters.

If somebody sent a poisoned letter, it wouldn’t be up to the Royal Mail to ensure they never sent a letter again. Why is Twitter different?


I can’t believe it. Incredibly radical, brave choice on part of producers. A straight, white dude. Gutsy. #DoctorWho

Yeah he’s British when he’s winning but Scottish when the Daleks win.

"SIGN THIS PETITION TO MAKE JANE AUSTEN THE THIRTEENTH DOCTOR!!!!!" First thing that will happen when #twittersilence ends. Guaranteed.

Doctor Who boss Steven Moffat: “We had a short-list. It went ‘Peter Capaldi’. It was very short”

I think an older doctor means River Song should be brought back. I think this *points* cup of tea means River Song should be brought back.


"You expressed yourself in a way that I slightly disapprove of. I’ll kill you, you kitten-strangling, fascist bastard!" – people on Twitter.

I really hope that when I’m 90 my internal monologue post-shower isn’t STILL ‘It rubs the lotion on its skin or else it gets the hose again’

GIVE work colleagues that ‘Deal or No Deal’ suspense by closing the lid on the toilet seat after use.

Saw a beautiful sight yesterday: car in outside lane, up someone’s arse, flashing like mad, oblivious of cop car behind him. Lol-ed.

Tim Lusher’s "Worst. Detention. Ever" has probably already wiped the floor in this caption competition

George Osborne in a nursery

Ensure that you avoid Halal meat by only buying produce that has been beaten to death with a baseball bat by Bernard Matthews

pride and prejudice but with lions. #amwriting

Want followers? Tweet something funny. Can’t think of anything? Tweet something honest. Can’t say anything honest or funny? Try Facebook.

"How to be outraged on the internet" http://thepessimist.com/2013/08/07/how-to-be-outraged-on-the-internet/

CONVINCE your wife you’ve been looking at porn by throwing your laptop out of the window as soon as she walks in the room.

Genius. Russian guy altered his loan details to 0%, sent back to bank, they signed without looking, bound by it. #awesome  http://mobile.news.com.au/money/banking/no-fees-0-interest-bank-fail-as-man-scribbles-his-own-terms-on-credit-card-contract/story-e6frfmcr-1226693921929 

Cool: Burglars return stolen goods to group that helps sexual assault survivors. You gotta read the note    they left



GAME: Stand at a tube station with a group of friends. When passers-by mention their destination, shout "mornington crescent". All cheer.

Poet @okwonga has created something rather beautiful in response to the relentless ugliness of the trolly men:

Dear invisible men,
Who tweet women endless threats of rape,
Who are you?
Are you married fathers of two?
Are you teens crowded round a friend’s phone in a canteen or KFC?
Are you pausing between texting your first love,
To set yourself up as an egg,
And post fresh hate?
Where are you as you type this?
Is your girlfriend asleep in your arms,
As you peer over her shoulder at your phone?
How did this become your sport?
You are not proud of what you do;
If you were, you would not care who knew.
This is strange:
You loudly announce pride in your prejudice
But your invisibility suggests your shame.
There is such an anger in you
That it cannot be cloaked with jokes.
I pity the mirror that has to reflect your misery,
Since it must see so much.
Because the women are everywhere now,
Aren’t they?
They weren’t just content in your beds,
Now they’re not just in your clubs,
Or in the eyes and hearts of other men;
The women are in your classrooms, boardrooms and DJ booths,
They are obstructing you, or ignoring you,
Not needing you to improve.
Swiftly, they are sweeping you from every stage,
And the only place you feel safe
Is in one-hundred and forty characters of rage.
I doubt that, as you type, you will ever pause
To think that, while you promise terror,
The greatest fear is yours.


I *finally* have more screens and monitors in my house than I have friends! <<FTW!

12 y/o mugger is getting really pissed off at me for tweeting about him, especially when I turn my phone round so he can watch me hit tweet.

Panic over, everybody. Mugger has gone and sat down elsewhere. He called me a pussyclart. I asked if he knows the Pokemon theme tune.

Tonight, all channels: 7pm: Shop a Scrounger 8pm Scum Britain: Benefits Bastards on the Take 9pm Vermin UK: Do You Really Need a Wheelchair?


Police account tweeted: Just dealt with a Shoplifter at Tesco. The lady tried to leave without paying for some jars of baby food, two young children with her.

Re last RT, Tory Britain. 7th richest nation on Earth, poor reliant on food banks, stealing baby food and being driven to prostitution

The coppers busting a woman shoplifting baby food gives me chance to dust off A. France’s quote from 1894. Nothing has changed.

The law, in its majestic equality, forbids the rich as well as the poor to sleep under bridges, to beg in the streets, and to steal bread.

@ThegoodBuck and Tesco’s felt the need to call the police #shameonthem

My favourite customer, so far today, is the one who asked me for decapitated coffee.

I couldn’t haul sheep. Inhumanely packed, sad faces, pathetic bleating. See also Virgin rail conductor.

On the coach, asked my 10yo what he’s listening to. "James Blunt". I’ll miss him but I’m hopeful he’ll get taken in by a nice local family.

Cycle of Twitter. Yay A levels, don’t be upset A levels, stop fucking talking about A levels, stop snarking about talking about A levels.

I didn’t get any A levels and look at me. *whistles "suicide is painless" *

Make your own snooker ball by sucking a bowling ball for several hundred years.


TLF Travel Alerts kept their finger on the commuter pulse:

We will be tweeting an important announcement for passengers on the central line as soon as we’ve worked out what the plural of octopus is.


Doesn’t matter, they’ve gone.


You call it "wanting to be ideologically sound", I call it "not wanting to be a hateful prick". Potato potahto.

And on that politically correct note,