20140804 – It’s All Go. Never A Dull Moment. Living The Dream.

Monday – warm with sunny spells.

 

Wendy on the way out to Sultan barbecue platform.

Wendy on the way out to Sultan barbecue platform.

Although there’s forecast of a 40% chance of rain we decide to go for a short hike. Catch the bus up to Silver Lake and hike out to the Sultan barbecue platform with awesome views over Jordanelle. Yes, there’s a lovely platform complete with picnic tables, two barbecues and even fire extinguisher.

Set me thinking what would the Blackburn scrots do to this. Well they probably start off by gobbing gum everywhere; followed by some liberal spray painting of graffiti to make up for their lack of colouring books and crayons in their deprived childhood; out would come the knives to try their hand at carving their initials, not that they can spell; the barbecues would certainly be stolen; oh and while we’re at it use the fire extinguisher to put out an imaginary fire. The gypos would come along and help out by taking away all the metal work, “Oh we thought you’d left it out scrapping. We’re only trying to be helpful. Saving you a trip. Why are we so misunderstood?”. Then to finish the job off the scrots would either steal the remaining wood or more likely set fire to it all and the surrounding forests.

Then I realised that none of this would happen because they have to walk 4 miles and they’re too dam lazy.

Barbecues ready, and they're clean, along with picnic tables.

Barbecues ready, and they’re clean, along with picnic tables.

Call in at Royal Street cafe for a lavish lunch for Wendy.

On the way home Wendy “just nips into the supermarket” (there’s no such thing as a targeted, single purpose, quick trip to the supermarket with Wendy) and I try to buy some of that delicious Paso Robles Merlot, but the greedy brown paper baggers have doubled the price of it. Pass.

It looks like I spoke to soon when I was joking about gluten free beer. Yes, here in the land of opportunity – to make lots of money – they even have gluten free beer. What about wine then? Surely not!

We’re frequently asked by friends, especially our English friends who are a tad sceptical of all things American, why do we spend so much time in America and what is it we like so much. Well apart from the fact that we like to travel, there are many things. When we were hunkered down avoiding the rare rain we decided it was about time we gave this some serious consideration and listed them along with the things we didn’t like.

Jordanell reservoir from the Sultan barbecue platform.

Jordanell reservoir from the Sultan barbecue platform.

Here goes, the things we like about America:

Americans are so friendly. Just get on a ski lift with them and by the time you’ve got to the top, just 10 minutes, you’ve usually struck up a real rapport, know their life story, political inclinations and complete medical history.

Awesome National Parks.

Service is so much better. Probaly a lot of it driven by the tipping mentality. Yes, I really struggle with it, but I have to admit it does seem to produce better service.

Most things are so much cheaper.

Wine, junk food, mexican food, meat, choice of food are so much better.

With the advent of Starbucks they’ve mainly moved from a country serving brown dishwater as coffee – although you can still come across it – to some excellent coffee.

Parking slots are so much bigger and even though they have the land they’re even better because they’re on an angle and easy to swing you’re giant gas guzzler into.

Their homes and accommodation are so much bigger and open plan.

And to keep a sense of balance what do we dislike:

The American gun culture. Although to be fair as I don’t carry a gun I’m so much safer than anyone who does.

On the way back from Sultan barbecue platform. Anyone notice the before and after bedraggled look.

On the way back from Sultan barbecue platform. Anyone notice the before and after bedraggled look.

Prices being shown without sales tax. It’s madness. You have to pay it so why not show it, rather than trying to con your customers. Perhaps it helps the nation improve their maths!

A Catholic priest, a Protestant minister, and a Mormon bishop were discussing when life begins.

“Life begins,” said the priest, “at the moment of fertilization. That is when God instills the spark of life into the fetus.”

“We believe,” said the minister, “that life begins at birth, because that is when the baby becomes an individual and is capable of making its own decisions and must learn about sin.”

“You’ve both got it wrong,” said the bishop. “Life begins when the children have graduated from college and moved out of the house.”

It seems that a man came bursting into Brigham Young’s office, crutches flying. He only had one leg, and he shouted, “Now, Mr. Prophet, I want you to give me another leg this instant. Otherwise, I will publish it abroad that you are not a prophet at all.”

President Young apparently told him that would be easy enough, but that consequences would result. Young explained that if he gave him another leg, it would rise with him in the resurrection – as would the other two legs. That meant the man would have to deal with three legs for all eternity.

The Pope calls Cardinal Dolan on the phone, and he can hardly speak. “Cardinal!! I’ve got some good news and some bad news!!”

The Cardinal says, “Give me the good news first.” The Pope says, “I just got a call from Jesus! It’s the second coming, and he’s on the earth now!!”

Cardinal Dolan says, “But Holy Father, that’s wonderful! What’s the bad news?”

“He called from Salt Lake City.”

Lunch for one at Royal Street Cafe.

Lunch for one at Royal Street Cafe.

Timehop – Don’t you just love repeat posts. Now we can have repeats of all those inane posts written by people who fell out the stupid tree and hit every branch on the way down. Posts such as:

Name a city that doesn’t have a letter A in it! Doh.

Remember the telephone box on …. street. Wow, that’s really interesting….. What have lampposts and cracks in pavements done to be so ignominiously ignored.

Sayings about dragons with a request to repost.

Swearing and really foul language.

“Send this rubbish on and you’ll receive good luck” – doh.

“Fail to send this rubbish on and you’ll be cast down into hell” – doh, doh.

“Only 1% will send this on”, often followed by “…and I know who you are”. In which case why not send it to just the 1%.

Excessive details on bodily functions or their sex life or lack thereof.

Can u read this crap. The amazing power of the mind.

What kind of dwarf / dessert / psychopath are you?

The Book of Mormon comes to South Park. I’ve heard great things about this musical. Normally I’d rather watch paint flake off the ceiling than watch a musical but I really do want to see this one. Who knows perhaps someone will eventually have the gonads to do a muslim equivalent,


Tuesday – grey, warm and rain.

 

It’s forecast rain again but sticking with the go for it and ignore it philosophy. It might never happen. Up and out for a MTB ride. Wendy stays at home.

Oh well you can’t win them all, it did rain but I didn’t get too wet.

Get back and Wendy’s sat on the deck sunning herself.

Yippee, we’ve finally finished Dexter. All 8 seasons. It was good but please not a season 9, it would be enough to make you want to splatter your brains over a tiger skin rug.

Mini-rant – Rip off Britain strikes again. A small Starbucks costs about $1.77 or £1.04 in Park City. Yet in the UK the same coffee, except it came from Switzerland (one of the Worlds major coffee growers no doubt), costs about £1.77. Whilst I realise good old ethical Starbucks, who care so much about their social standing and their local communities, have their expensive Swiss coffee and all that tax to pay, you’d think that they’d be able to do the maths that £1 = about $1.68 and not $1.00 (in their dreams).

Q: Why should polygamy be legal? A: Any guy willing to take multiple wives is punishment enough!
Deer Valley - Bald Mountain.

Deer Valley – Bald Mountain.

A Mormon Bishop got on an elevator on the 10th floor, (he was heading to the lobby) when on the 8th floor a beautiful woman walked in. (they were alone) On the way to the lobby the gorgeous woman hit the stop button. She turned to the Bishop and said: “Can you make me feel like a true woman?” The Bishop said: “I sure can” and excitedly took off all his clothes, he then threw them in the corner of the elevator. He turned to the woman pointed to the clothes and said: “Now fold them”.

A child at a Christian school was studying the early days of Mormonism in his class. He wrote on his paper, “The early Mormons believed in having more than one wife. This is called polygamy. But we believe in having only one wife. This is called monotony”

Two Mormons were out hunting when they happened upon two beautiful women. They asked the women if they’d like to “fool around.” The women replied, “We’re game!” So the Mormons shot them.

Up to 100,000 Christians and other minority faiths have fled the jihadists who have vowed to purge all “non-believers” and are reported to be carrying out crucifixions and beheadings.

Where is the collective voice of the “moderate peace loving” Muslim communities in Britain, to decry the foul slaughter by fellow Muslims?

Their silences is deafening.

Muslim sensitivity training in South Park. What a great idea, the religion of permanent offence needs to toughen up, grow some calloused skin and remember “sticks and stones….”. PS you need to click the YouTube logo in the bottom right hand corner – looks like allah has some IT skills on YouTube!


Deer Valley concert venue from the lift.

Deer Valley concert venue from the lift.

Wendy’s on the mountain volunteering. My plans for a hike up Spiro have been scuttled as the trails will be too muddy from all the rain overnight.

After a lazy morning I go to “Gentle Yoga” in the afternoon. Nothing gentle about this. I’ve noticed as the weeks go on it’s got tougher and tougher. Get to feel like a pretzel. And I’m sick to death of that “Downward Facing Dog”, enough to make you yearn for the nearest lamp post.

Pass on the free evening concert at Deer Valley. We’ve no Dexter to watch so need to select a new Netflix series. Try “Hack” but that’s mediocre and seems to have been entirely shot in the dark. Try the Killing. We started to watch it years ago on TV but for some perverse BBC programming reason had to abandon to after a few episodes.


Thursday – hot and sunny.

 

Well apparently, according to Wendy, there were some violent storms overnight, with lashings of loud thunder and lightning. Missed it all as I

Deer Valley Big Stick and Little Stick ski runs.

Deer Valley Big Stick and Little Stick ski runs.

was sleeping the sleep of the righteous, yet again.

Wendy’s doing her Florence Nightingale stint, washing and rolling bandages no doubt. I’m going up to PCMR to do my smile and be nice to people stint as a mountain host. What a terrifying thought. Could be painful.

Finish smiling at 13:30 then cycle down to the hospital for free coffee and civilised newspapers. It’s better than an airport lounge, they even come round dishing out free coffee or lemonade. Although sadly the foods chargeable and being Utah there’s no alcohol.

Wendy on Spiro at Park City.

Wendy on Spiro at Park City.

Then it’s down to the NAC for archery. The kids there get such a kick out of shooting pictures of horror movie villains. Next week at least we manage to get Sheriff of Nottingham and Captain Hook.

No free concerts tonight for a change, so it’s a quiet evening in. Unfortunately I’m relegated to sniffing old wine corks out of the waste bin as there’s been a major cock up in the supply of essential vitals – no wine. You just can’t get the staff these days.

The other day we came across some muslim’s. How did we know? Well they wore the hijab, at least the women did. It’s the first time we’ve seen any muslims for months, so quite a culture shock. But the real sad thing is how you immediately look on them with suspicion. Even though they may be moderate muslims – if such a thing really exists.

Thanks to the extreme fundamentalists and all the barbaric violence they perpetrate in the name of islam, it’s really not surprising you feel

Wendy on Spiro - are we there yet?

Wendy on Spiro – are we there yet?

that way. It’s as bad as looking upon your average German as a Nazi. Whereas most Germans and muslims I’ve met are lovely people. But perhaps when you consider – “The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing.” (Edmund Burke) – you can understand why.

No doubt we all feel a tad insignificant on these issues, but consider – “Nobody made a greater mistake than he who did nothing because he could do only a little.” (Edmund Burke).

Women: “Is that a gun in your pocket or are you just happy to see me”
Man: “Either Way love we’ll be having sex in a minute”

A guy with a gun enters a bar.
“Who had sex with my wife?” he snarled.
A voice was heard in the background, “You don’t have enough bullets mate!”

The NRA’s Newest Marketing Fantasy: Teach the Children “Gun Required”

National Rifle Association suggests we can live up to the Founding Fathers’ ideals by creating “gun-required zones,” and making gun training for children “necessary to advance to the next grade.”

Considers what gun policies the United States would have “if we designed gun policy from the assumption that people need guns — that guns make people’s lives better.”

Sadly this isn’t a joke. Remember “guns don’t kill and maim +30,000 pa, people do”. Now we have “People need guns”.

Pat Condell – Message to Offended Muslims. Another one of his epic rants. Just love them. Lets have more.


Friday – warm and sunny.

 

My winter office - The Snow Hut.

My winter office – The Snow Hut.

Set off for a hike up Spiro. Halfway up and it’s non-stop earache from Wendy, “are we there yet?”, “you told me it wasn’t steep”.

Take a shortcut up mountain road to Snowhut, not a smart move. Very steep, yet in winter it’s only a green run. Then across mid mountain and up Mojave and mountain road to Crescent lift and down.

Despite all the moans and groans Wendy makes it. Well done it was worth the effort.

Thankfully wine crisis is over. 2 bottles of Merlot to tide me over.

Unbelievable. I’ve just been stood waiting for Wendy in the supermarket and watching her shop. She really does think she’s in a library,

Wendy on Spiro - nearly there.

Wendy on Spiro – nearly there.

browsing the shelves; take it down, read the label; put it back; repeat for everything else on the shelf. 4 minutes later something finally goes in the basket. Next isle; 3 minutes on one section and not a single purchase. Sell by dates need to be in giant letters and shopping carts should have a minimum speed or maximum load period. At the speed Wendy shops most things will be past their sell by date by the time she gets to checkout.

Memo to self, that’s assuming I can remember to read it, never go in a supermarket with Wendy again. It will damage my health and could lead to divorce.

It’s all evaporated away, the Merlot that is, must be the altitude. Sadly the concerts not over yet, how will I survive the rest.

Not one waiver to sign; no I don’t have to trade Wendy in for another; I don’t even have to take on more trouble and strifes – imagine two or more shopping in a supermarket together, worse than having my teeth pulled; not one mention of JC (USA); not one mention of JC (Holy Land); no mention of religion of peace. Just left alone to enjoy the music, mind you I did wonder how surrounded we were by Mormons. But at least they wouldn’t try to crucify me if I didn’t convert.

Meanwhile on the way home. American “wasn’t it great? What did you think.”. Me “I thought it was a bit insipid. Not exactly a vibrant choice of music for a a World class choir”. American with dazed look of confusion “but what does insipid mean, we thought it was great”. Hmmm….. I don’t think she had all her choir chairs lined up.

Thistle.

Thistle.

“You don’t need no gun control, you know what you need? You need bullet control. Control the bullets, that’s right. All bullets should cost five thousand dollars… five thousand dollars per bullet… You know why? If a bullet cost five thousand dollars there would be no more innocent bystanders.

Yeah! Every time somebody get shut we’d say, ‘Damn, he must have done something … Shit, he’s got fifty thousand dollars worth of bullets in his ass.’

People would think before they killed somebody if a bullet cost five thousand dollars. ‘Man I would blow your head off…if I could afford it.’ ‘I’m gonna get me another job, I’m going to start saving some money, and you’re a dead man. You’d better hope I can’t get no bullets on layaway.’

Even if you get shot by a stray bullet, you wouldn’t have to go to no doctor to get it taken out. Whoever shot you would take their bullet back, like “I believe you got my property.”

That dam religion of peace again. I think I’m just going to ignore anything that relates to islam. We all know what the script is. Wake me up
Wendy makes it to top via Spiro. Now for a relaxing ride down.

Wendy makes it to top via Spiro. Now for a relaxing ride down.

when hell freezes over or islam becomes civilised.

40,000 Iraqis stranded on mountain as Isis jihadists threaten death. Members of minority Yazidi sect face slaughter if they go down and dehydration if they stay, while 130,000 fled to Kurdish north.

Meanwhile, that apologist for Hamas, numbskull and little lad that follows round on Camerons shirt tails (Clegg) thinks we should stop selling arms to Israel if the ceasefire fails. Even if Hamas violates it! Yet not a mention of the above tragedy or the daily slaughter of Christians by the fundamentalists of this evil pernicious ideology.

Wake up, have a swig of your favourite tipple, before its too late.


Saturday – hot and sunny.

 

Park City ski runs from Crescent lift.

Park City ski runs from Crescent lift.

Up hosting on the mountain.

It really does expose you to the great American public. Comprehension, reading, listening and literacy skills do worry you. Todays question of the day was “so what’s a queue?”.

When we finish we go to the Pickin’ at Park City: A Bluegrass, Brews & BBQ Festival on Saturday, August 9th. Three bluegrass acts, headlined by the nationally-acclaimed The Travelin’ McCourys! And what better way to enjoy FREE bluegrass music than to mix in a craft beer garden and BBQ! Yes, we’ll have some great brews to taste (as long as they’re below 3.5%)

Please, no outside alcohol or pets allowed in the concert venue. This is Utah so guns and automatic weapons will probably be ok!

I would have a beer but a 30 minute queue meant I would have died of dehydration before I got a beer. It was enough to get anyone to take the pledge.

Park City ski runs from Crescent lift.

Park City ski runs from Crescent lift.

Have I gone deaf or is this band just a mime act. Mind you I do Van Gogh’s ear for music. Hang on, I can hear Wendy so I’m not mutt an jeff after all. What is the point of a concert with music so quiet it’s drowned out by the sound of a gun sliding out of its holster. Talking of which we had a tyre explode on the plaza today. I’m totally surprised there weren’t 40 guns drawn and 50 people dive for the deck.

Todd and Nancy join us.


Sunday – hot and sunny.

 

Tour of Utah (similar to the Tour de France but without the French) finishes at Park City.

Yet another weekend of excitement and activity in Park City as it hosts the final stages of the Tour Of Utah. Watch the start and then have a pleasant lunch with Rick and Lynda in the “No Name Saloon”. A very eclectic western style saloon.

And they're off. Tour Of Utah Bike race.

And they’re off. Tour Of Utah Bike race.

Brake my second rule of retirement and have a day time Fat Tyre. Even have lunch. One of the best Reubans ever.

Wendy then marauds the stalls for freebies and enters every competition available. She just loves freebies, even though we have absolutely no use for them other than to fill our dustbin with. Mind you if we’re in luck then we’ll probably have at least 8 top of the range road bikes to bring home.

After tea, well dinner for the posh uns, we sit our on the deck. Watch the mountains to make sure they don’t move. It’s warm, sunny and such a pleasant evening. Watch about 9 different types of bird, including an awesome Humming bird and our cheeky squirrel. Perfect end to another perfect day here in paradise. Living the dream!

Alex Jones on South Park on gun control!

HEALTH WARNING – LONG RANT ON ANTIBIOTIC RESISTENCE

What the hell is going on?

Tour Of Utah Bike race.

Tour Of Utah Bike race.

GPs are handing out antibiotics faster than ever for coughs and colds. Harassed doctors are needlessly fuelling the rise of superbugs.

Antibiotic prescribing for minor ailments is up 40 per cent in a decade, suggesting that guidance to combat antibiotic resistance is being routinely ignored. Most patients with coughs, colds and sore throats are given drugs that do them no good yet risk the health of others, the study concluded.

GPs have long been advised not to give out the drugs for minor ailments, which are often caused by viruses, against which antibiotics are useless.

Despite all this 51 per cent of patients with coughs and colds were given antibiotics in 2011. Two thirds of patients with sore throats got antibiotics, usually for no good reason.

Tour Of Utah Bike race.

Tour Of Utah Bike race.

David Cameron warned last month that the world could be “cast back into the dark ages of medicine” by the rise of antibiotic-resistant bacteria. The rise of untreatable bacteria threatens an “unthinkable scenario” where minor infections could once again kill.

These doctors should know better and refer back to their hippocratic oath “I will prescribe regimens for the good of my patients according to my ability and my judgment and never do harm to anyone”.

Bear in mind that only five new types of antibiotics have been introduced since the 1960s and the supply of newly-developed drugs is dwindling as companies see little profit in working on treatments designed only to be used as a last resort.

Meanwhile we can all help by stopping using anti-bacterial soaps etc:

1 Antibacterial soaps are no more effective than conventional soap and water. 42 years of FDA research—along with countless independent

Tour Of Utah Bike race.

Tour Of Utah Bike race.

studies—have produced no evidence that antibacterial soaps (triclosan) provides any health benefits as compared to old-fashioned soap.

2. Antibacterial soaps have the potential to create antibiotic-resistant bacteria.

3. The soaps could act as endocrine disruptors. There are worries theycould lead to problems such as infertility, artificially-advanced early puberty, obesity and cancer.

4. The soaps might lead to other health problems, too. There’s evidence that children with prolonged exposure to triclosan have a higher chance of developing allergies, including peanut allergies and hay fever.

5. Antibacterial soaps are bad for the environment.

What Should You Do?

If you’re planning on giving up antibacterial soap—like Johnson & Johnson, Kaiser Permanente and several other companies have recently done, then you have a couple options.

One is a non-antibiotic hand sanitizer, like Purell, which doesn’t contain any triclosan and simply kills both bacteria and viruses with good old-fashioned alcohol. Because the effectiveness of hand-washing depends on how long you wash for, a quick squirt of sanitizer might be more effective when time is limited.

Outside of hospitals, though, the CDC recommends the time-tested advice you probably heard as a child: wash your hands with conventional soap and water. That’s because while alcohol from hand sanitizer kills bacteria, it doesn’t actually remove dirt or anything else you may have touched. But a simple hand wash should do the trick. The water doesn’t need to be hot, and you’re best off scrubbing for about 30 seconds to get properly clean.

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