Tag Archives: Park City

20140713 – Cultural overdose; 1812 Overture; Mountain Bike clinics; Mirror Lake in the Unita’s

Sunday – very hot and sunny.

 

Park City from Lost Prospector trail on Masonic Hill. Found the trail at last.

Park City from Lost Prospector trail on Masonic Hill. Found the trail at last.

Up early to get up to Deer valley for the free guided tour. Sadly our free bus service expert, she shall remain nameless, screwed up on the timetable and didn’t notice the Deer valley service didn’t start until 10:00.

Never mind in typical experienced mother fashion she managed to misdirect and pacify a disappointed child by offer me an alternative. I just love the way Mothers do that with kids, divert them with a slight of hand. Always seems a little deceitful to me, but hey ho it works. Rather than my approach of dealing directly with confrontation and the resulting tantrums.

Anyway we finally get to find the Lost Prospector trail on Masonic hill. We’ve tried snowshoeing it in winter but could never find it. Probably because it’s covered in snow. A very pleasant walk with stunning view over Park City.

Visited Deer valley to book concerts, MTB course and have lunch and coffee. Place is more deserted than a Christian revivalist meeting in the

Deer Valley ponds and mountains from the cafe deck.

Deer Valley ponds and mountains from the cafe deck.

middle of Tehran. But in true American / Ford principle there’s a cast of 8 people sat around doing nothing and to add insult to customer service concert tickets have to be purchased upstairs.

Booked for the 1812 and the Disney concert.

Sat in sumptuous settees, sorry sofas, having coffee with great mountain views and watch the Stand up paddle boarders. Seems very popular, but I fail to comprehend why. Looks more boring than cricket or even watching footballers bite chunks out of one another in the World Cup. Need to try it I suppose.

Don’t you just love scroty behaviour, if it’s not yobo’s with feet on bus seats, it’s Dads with there feet on cafe tables – probably a footballer setting a great example to his kids. Better not say anything, he may bite or shoot me.

 

All the fun of the fair and FREE.

All the fun of the fair and FREE.

I see our local rag has picked up on yet more nonsense from the religion of peace, harmony, understanding and common sense. TV programme Dispatches reports on Muslims trying to take over our schools with teaching assistants talking in the staff room at the Olive School, Blackburn. Saying clapping and whistling are un-Islamic and ‘Satanic’; music in school should be banned as non-Muslim; the wearing of ties is forbidden in Islam as they could turn into serpents on the ‘Day of Judgement’; Gay people should be ‘stoned to death’. I can certainly relate to the “music and even dancing” issue as a chair of governor we had several attempts to ban these activities. What planet do these people live on. What amazes me is the brass balls to expect us to change to suit their barbaric ways. Simple. If you don’t like it go somewhere where these things are banned, there are plenty of barbaric places in the world that will accommodate your 7th century views.

Am I surprised? No. What really beggars belief is that we tolerate this 7th century barbaric nonsense in our schools and society.

Since the programme OFSTED did an unannounced inspection. Surprise, surprise they saw clapping and singing. Am I surprised? If the head of the school didn’t realise, after that programme, that there would be a snap inspection, then he should have been shipped out on the first plane to Taliban land. No doubt the kids were all lined up singing a song of welcome to the OFSTED inspectors, clapping them in and of course all wearing ties. Are OFSTED really taken in that easily.

It’s simple let’s get religion out of schools. They should all be secular. While we’re at it let’s get government meddling out of schools.

Angela squeals down the Alpine slide.

Angela squeals down the Alpine slide.

They’re not a political points scoring football or a test bed for the latest fad. Let’s have an independent organisation with clearly defined objectives, like the Bank of England, to stop this constant change in schools.

Lazy afternoon.

Monday – very hot and sunny again.

 

After all that exertion I have a lazy afternoon to recover. Meanwhile Wendy’s had a day in doing houseworky type things. It’s too hot in the afternoon to even sit out on the deck. We were going to go to the free chamber music concert in the park but back out. Wendy’s not too keen and it’s so hot. Perhaps next Monday evening.

Wow it’s that hot in the evening that we watch TV out on the deck.

Why do we need blasphemy laws? Surely a supreme being / god is capable of defending his or her own honour.

 

Tuesday – very hot and sunny again.

 

Angela shows me up with climbing skills and lack of fear.

Angela shows me up with climbing skills and lack of fear.

You’d think that yesterday being a 2,200 foot ride downhill it would be easy. Wrong! Exhausting and 85F didn’t help. Feeling the pain / gain this morning with muscles that haven’t seen action since the day I was born.

For the first time in ages we get the chance to have a lie in. Off up the to the mountain with Carol and Angela with some free ride tickets. Manage the Alpine slide; Alpine coaster; crazy golf can be a tad tortuous with a 5 year old; Angela loves the big slide and climbing wall, especially coming down. Then Wendy and I do the zip rider for good measure. A great day out and all free. By 16:00 we get home and its 90F out there.

Still living the dream. Every day is just epic. Great weather and so many things to do. Just no time to even sit around and read.

Watched Captain Philips DVD – just £0.72 a night from Red box, isn’t that just awesome.

Now I’m assuming for one moment that this film is reasonably accurate and has some degree of authenticity. I therefore find it incredulous

The latest is airline seat proposals from Airbus. Even cattle and sheep get more space in transit by law!

The latest is airline seat proposals from Airbus. Even cattle and sheep get more space in transit by law!

that here in the land of the sacred 2nd amendment; the NRA and all it’s propaganda; kids being slaughtered; proposals for armed teachers; little old ladies wandering around with with an AR15’s in their handbags, their right to protect themselves. Yet a massive American container ship on the high seas, in known piracy waters, and the only protection they have is water pistols (hoses). Not a gun, rocket launcher, missile or any sensible form of protection to be seen. A situation where even a half brained spaniel would see the merit in “bearing arms”. Goldfish for jam jars.

So a bunch of 3rd world rag heads, in a ram shackled boat that is on it’s last legs, take over a giant American container ship.

Putting that lunacy aside it’s a great film.

Wednesday – very hot and sunny again.

 

A typical living the dream sort of day. Up and out for a walk first thing. Back home for coffee. A bike ride into town. After lunch it’s a 5 minute stroll round to the PC MARC gym for a 1 hour yoga session. Then of course it’s time for afternoon tea. In the evening we catch the bus to the FREE – love that word – concert at Deer Valley. Perfect end to a perfect day.

Thursday – very hot and sunny again.

 

Wendy on picnic at Deer Valley concert, complete with coke bottle and a potent slug of Bacardi already in it.

Wendy on picnic at Deer Valley concert, complete with coke bottle and a potent slug of Bacardi already in it.

Wendy’s doing her Florence Nightingale stint.

I’m off on a mountain bike ride around Round Valley. Then it’s a coffee and breather stop in the hospital restaurant, followed by another ride. On tarmac this time. Finally down to the NAC for my archery volunteers duty. It’s all a bit shambolic. Most of the kids are not physically disabled but just have mental health issues (is that a PC correct term – who knows these days). Tuition seems to be minimal, just let them shoot arrows and enjoy.

Yoga class at local gym with  soothing mountain views.

Yoga class at local gym with soothing mountain views.

I spot one youngster who’s not even loading his arrows correctly. Most are flying off in all directions. Help put him right. Their targets are pretty shot up and yet the backside of their targets are still ok. Suggest they get some paint to paint and use the back of the targets.

Next week I’m promoted to instructor.

Now I know it’s a thing in the American psyche that they all seem to think the current president is a total numbskull, no matter what their political allegiance and even if they voted for him. Usually you’re made aware of this within the average ski lift ride of meeting them for the first time – 10 minutes. Today however sets an all time record.

I'm That hungry I'll eat anything, even these crisps.

I’m That hungry I’ll eat anything, even these crisps.

Stranger lady “Where about’s are you from?”.

Me “England”.

Strange lady “Oh the problem with you English is you all think Obamas marvellous, YET HE’S RUINING THIS COUNTRY”.

An all time record just 10 seconds. Just the second sentence. She’s never met me before and a rip roaring tourette tirade about that nasty Mr Obama proceeds. I decide not to stoke the raging torrent by mentioning how pleased I am to see Obama care, how good I thought his State of the Union address was (if he only delivers 25% it’ll be marvellous) and how good our National Health service is.

Now at risk of loosing any chance of a green card; of the NSA passing my details onto the NRA; deportation; the NRA getting a petition up for my deportation I have included some Piers Morgan Youtubes.

The first is Piers Morgan Debate with Alex Jones on Gun Laws, 2nd Amendment and his petition for the deportation of Piers Morgan.

If ever there was an argument for a total gun ban, it’s allowing people like this fruitcake to have a water pistol never mind a gun – he has 55. Utter claptrap. Non stop tangential random drivel. Oh and just for good measure he also believes the Bush administration was in a conspiracy behind 9/11.

Alex Jones then goes on his radio programme – yes he has a popular radio chat show (really worrying) – to claim he was to be KILLED after the interview.

Piers Morgan’s goodbye video. Yes the NRA finally get shut of him.

As the 2nd’s so sacrosanct to the “American Psyche” I’ve come up with some possible solutions:

1st – scratch / rub out the letter “e” in the original document and change “bear arms” to “bare arms”.

God bless the 2nd. I keep tooled up with this little gem in my purse to protect me from rapists and muggers

God bless the 2nd. I keep tooled up with this little gem in my purse to protect me from rapists and muggers

2nd – a 28th Amendment prohibition of sale of ammunition to the public. Simples. Gun owners could have strict access to ammunition at a regulated firing range and could continue to oil and polish their guns each week. They could continue with their concealed weapons permits and in the event of an attack throw their gun at the attacker.

Mirror Lake in the Unitas.

Mirror Lake in the Unitas.

3rd – just add 5 words to the 2nd amendment as suggested by John Paul Stevens – served as an associate justice of the Supreme Court from 1975 to 2010. “A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms when serving in the Militia shall not be infringed.”

My question to supporters of the 2nd is this “Is the freedom under the 2nd amendment worth the death of you or one of your children?”.

Friday – very hot and sunny again.

 

Yet another cracking day living the dream. Up early and out at 10 with Carol, Hal, Marie (Carols sister) and Eric, and of course Angela. I’m DSC04766driving Hals off the road Toyota beast, may come in hand for the Unita’s. Carol, Marie and Eric are in the car with little miss chatter box.

Drive to Mirror Lake for a picnic and leisurely stroll around the lake.

Great day out. Good food and company. Awesome scenery.

Then we’re back in and have a 20 minute quick change act as we get ready to go to the Deer Valley open air concert. Never a dull moment.

Ever wonder whats in store for us from the bearded ones and the so called religion of peace? Well wake up and smell the coffee, this is where we’re headed if we don’t start to get a grip of the multicultural PC lunacy that pervades our country. People need to stand up and speak out.

A woman accused of adultery was stoned to death in first the “execution” of its kind by the Islamic State, human rights campaigners said
Cannons ready for 1812.

Cannons ready for 1812.

yesterday.

The Islamic State running Mosul had already demanded that those Christians still in the city convert, pay a special tax or leave but messages blaring on mosques’ loudspeakers appeared to spark an exodus. An earlier statement by Mosul’s new rulers had said there would be “nothing for them but the sword” if Christians did not abide by those conditions before noon today.

Mirror Lake in the Unitas.

Mirror Lake in the Unitas.

Thankfully we’re not in Blackburn, as I imagine the cacophony from the minarets as the so called “peaceful / moderate” muslims are shouting out in disgust and anger at this will be ear shattering.

The independent inquiry into the Trojan Horse take over of Birmingham schools came up with 21 recommendations for the council, it added: “It has been exacerbated by a culture of not wanting to address difficult issues and problems with school governance where there is a risk that BCC [Birmingham council] may be accused of being racist or Islamophobic.”

 

These are not difficult issues. It is simple. This is England. We are a tolerant society and respect different religions. But if you live here you do things our way, according to laws and norms of our country. Bugger so called islamaphobia and accusations of racism from the religion of permanent offence. Multiculturalism has failed. Stop bending over backwards to become such dhimmis. Give an inch to this so called religion of peace and they’ll have sharia law before you can say “peace be upon you”.

Saturday – very hot and sunny again.

 

I'm hungry. Gimee.

I’m hungry. Gimee.

Another Saturday rolls around. Another day smiling and being helpful on the mountain. I’m truly worried that all this being nice to people may seriously affect my long term psyche and ruin any chance I have of the Victor Meldrew award. Certainly won’t enhance my image or my rants and raves. Although I have to be honest there are the times when you really feel like letting rip, as some of these people seem to have fallen out of the Stupid tree and hit every branch on the way down. You seriously worry about pollution of the gene pool. It’s just an exercise in being professional. Think of the ski pass. Today was a good day no real howlers.

One thing I did notice yesterday, much to my surprise. Here we are in the land of guns and bubble gum. Yet, there’s hardly any gum on the plaza floor. Unlike Blackburn where you need crampons and climbing gear to surmount the mountains of chewing gum. Well done America.

Another lake in the Unitas.

Another lake in the Unitas.

Now here’s another surprise. After many years as a chair of governor in a CofE school, with predominantly muslim children, I can relate to this as our dhimmi PC multicultural CofE fell over themselves to give the religion of peace, harmony, understanding and tolerance an inch – “If the camel once gets his nose in the tent, his body will soon follow.” – and before you could say “praise be to allah” they’ll have stonings in the school playground.

A report into the ‘Trojan Horse’ plot by radical Muslims to infiltrate schools in Birmingham has found hardline governors bullied head teachers out of schools and imposed their own agenda.

The report commissioned by Birmingham City Council was highly critical of the council, which it said not only ignored the problem but made it worse by helping to remove besieged heads rather than support them.

Here we go again more lunacy from Europe, sadly they don’t have the brains of a biology specimen. Keep piling it on, it will just help make the results of the in / out vote so much more certain.

Excessively fat staff may have to be provided with larger office seats, lifts and priority parking by their employer after a European ruling yesterday that they have a disability that must be accommodated in the workplace. No doubt this will weigh heavily on the minds of employers as the morbidly obese employees (AKA Blobbies) will now be classified as disabled and have protection under the Equality Act 2010, so that their bosses cannot treat them less favourably because of their weight. Reasonable adjustments would have to be made to the workplace to accommodate such employees.

Hey what a great idea, encourage obesity. Give them all a disabled sticker and free sticky buns on the NHS. Stop them having to walk too far and stand any chance of exercise. I can’t wait to see a 25 stone air stewardess flub-erring down the isles, with her excess adipose tissue oozing from row to row and knocking your drinks over. Does this also mean that airlines will have to allocate them 2, 3 or even 4 seats at no extra cost?

Just love this:

20140706 – One more off the bucket list; Summer is as good as winter; Living the dream.

Sunday – hot (86F) and sunny.

 

I hope this string doesn't snap.

I hope this string doesn’t snap.

I’m on duty as a mountain host for the day. Smile stapled into place and ready for the onslaught of inane questions. Wendy’s off to the Outlet stores shopping. It’s what women do best. Too hot. Our home has no air conditioning just big patio doors to open downstairs and upstairs and ceiling fans. It’s even too hot to sit out on the deck and no way do we fancy a jacuzzi in this weather. Day on the mountain goes pretty quick. With a very relaxed team of hosts. Everyone just gets on with the job.

An overwhelming majority of the public now believes that people must speak English to be considered “truly British”, a national survey has found. 95 per cent now believe that speaking English is essential to being a member of the United Kingdom, compared with 86 per cent a decade ago. Seems like common sense to me, but our loony liberal PC storm troopers aren’t too keen on common sense. Heaven forbid immigrants should have to learn English. It always amazed me how many even 2nd or 3rd generation immigrants families never spoke English in the home and expected schools to provide extra resource to teach them. Pots for rags.

 

If I wake up in a morning and my elbows aren’t touching wood (meaning coffin)… it’s a good day!

 

George Carlin on Religion, great comedian just love his rants. Well worth watching. Hilarious:

 

Monday – hot and sunny again.

 
Up and out for 09:00 as we hike up Crescent Mountain Grade. Must have crossed nearly every ski run on the mountain. Wendy’s a whinging, weary, wilted, walker by the end of it. 86F out there even though we were up and out so early. Well done Wendy you made despite all the protestations.

Being as poor as squirrels with no nuts, we have no car – so un-American. I’m sat in the shade while Wendy does a weekly shop, then we have to haul it all back home on foot and on the bus.

Wendy tackles Crescent Mountain Grade (CMG).

Wendy tackles Crescent Mountain Grade (CMG).

Reminds us of how life used to be when we were kids with no cars, just them things on the end of our legs and a bus. Not even a bike. Crotch droppings these days, and I include my kids in this, just haven’t a clue. We remember frost on the windows in the mornings, that was even on the inside of the single glazed windows; no fire lit, so freezing cold until someone lit one; hardly any milk, so tea on me cornflakes; sugar buttes, and if you were really wealthy bread and jam to fill up with; outside toilet; tin bath on Friday night and kids were last in the cold murky waters. No skiing holidays, no cruises, no summer holidays. If you were really lucky you got a day out on the train to Skeggy as my Dad worked on the railways so we got a free ticket. No colour TV, no 3D TV. Just no TV. But worst of all no computers or Internet. We’ve never had it so good.

Need a proper beer, so that rules out any of these American pinkel waters. 2 Pilsner Urquell sat in the fridge just begging to be opened. Only 48 minutes and 12 seconds before they’ll be sliding down the side of a beer barrel, not a posy flower vase.

But hang on how can you have an Oktoberfest in with no beer? Ask the Mormons they seem to know how. Isn’t his a blatant infringement of the 1st Amendment – Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion….”.

My winter office. Closed in the summer.

My winter office. Closed in the summer.


 
Religion strikes again.

Tuesday – very hot and sunny again.

 
Up at the crack o sparrows to avoid the heat. Mind you some technogeek, he shall remain nameless, set the 06:00 alarm.

Things are looking up, even managed Cammy’s trail without needing shoe leather. Then spent 30 minutes discussing US politics with Dick, a staunch Obama supporter, here in the midst of this extreme right wing Republican Utah. Mind you Park City is a little ungodly, enclave of Democrats – a real Sodom and Gomorrah.

Where's the snow?

Where’s the snow?

Worth an early start, not too hot.

Park City makes it even easier with more alcoholic beverage businesses per capita than any other place in the state. So whether you’re looking for a local brew or just a glass of wine, you won’t be left high and dry.

 
What a veritable cornucopia of birds on our deck, mind you they do eat more bird food a day than we can afford. Sadly these two geriatrics forgot their binoculars so we don’t get to identify them all.

Isn't nature awesome> Just look at the beauty and symmetry.

Isn’t nature awesome> Just look at the beauty and symmetry.

Wendy and I cycle down – the key word there being down – to Kimball junction for a spot of shopping. But first a Starbucks moment to help me gird me loins and a psychoactive stimulant to ease the pain.

Finally decide to lash out and buy some Camelbaks for our walks, mountain biking. There big on “hydration packs” over here nearly as obsessive as “Gluten free”.
 

I see that the religion of permanent offence has been at it again because of another film / cartoon. Like most of these efforts they’re certainly not Oscar material but in the interest of improving the threshold of tolerance of this pernicious religion I’ve posted details of where it can be viewed.

Aisha and Muhammad

The Dramatic Life of a Little Child Married to the Prophet of Islam

As announced in an earlier press release, the movie, “Aisha and Muhammad”, has been released on schedule.

The release has been coincided with the US Independence Day on July 4 as a mark of respect to the American victims in the battle against Radical Islam.

The full movie in English can be viewed online from the following website links:

http://www.islam-watch.org/video.html

 

  Sometimes I pretend to be

 

NORMAL

 

But it gets boring……

 

So I go back to being me.

 

Wednesday – hot and sunny then at teatime we get a downpour.

 
I’m up and out for 09:00. Well made it up Town lift side, Sweeneys switchbacks and Johns trail. Feel like a drowned water rat by the time I get to the top of Payday lift. It’s so humid you could beat the water out of the air with a boat paddle. I think I’ve lost 8 pints of sweat. Thankfully my new Camelbak helps is pretty good. Good job Wendy didn’t come, the earache would have been too painful. At several points it was just an uphill scramble – think I may have been lost.

A well deserved swig of water at the top of Crescent Mine Grade. A tad too hot for Wendy.

A well deserved swig of water at the top of Crescent Mine Grade. A tad too hot for Wendy.

Can now advise guests on Townlift hikes. “Don’t bother. If you must do it, go down.”

After lunch get myself a locals $70 point ticket for the PC MARC gym or any classes. 10 points, so just $7 per class or gym access. Go to a Yoga class. Can’t believe I survive an hours yoga and not a drop of sweat on my brow. Now that means I’m either getting fitter – mind you I am at my lowest weight today in living memory, not that impressive when you consider I can’t remember what I had for breakfast – or after this mornings hike there’s just no sweat left in me.

Then the heavens open up. Raining like a cow peeing on a flat rock and then hailstones. In typical American fashion even the raindrops are bigger and better. Wendy’s gone shopping but miraculously she misses a drenching. This is the first serious rain we’ve seen since we got here. Please tell me this doesn’t mean we’ll be seeing a perambulating, inverted, black bin liner next. Mind you the thought of one hiking, mountain biking, snowboarding or better still skiing does stretch the imagination.

I get perplexed that so many people get upset and rile against another mosque being built, or an old pub being converted into an islamic community centre. I think, in true PC multicultural loony liberal fashion, the mosque or community centre should be allowed, in an effort to promote tolerance. That is why I also propose that two nightclubs be opened next door to the mosque, thereby promoting tolerance from within the mosque. We could call one of the clubs, which would be gay, “The Turban Cowboy,” and the other a topless bar called “You Mecca Me Hot.” Next door should be a butcher shop that specializes in pork, and adjacent to that an open-pit barbecue pork restaurant, called “Iraq of Ribs.” Across the street there could be a lingerie store called ” Victoria Keeps Nothing Secret,” with sexy mannequins in the window modeling the goods. Next door to the lingerie shop there would be room for an adult sex toy shop, “Koranal Knowledge,” its name in flashing neon lights, and on the other side a liquor store called “Morehammered.” All of this would encourage Muslims to demonstrate the tolerance they demand of us, so their mosque issue would not be a problem for others.

 

Yes, we should promote tolerance, and if you are not laughing or smiling at this point… It is either past your bedtime, or it’s midnight at the oasis and time to put your camel to bed!!!!

 

What is it with this American obsession with everything being gluten free. It’s every where and everything. I’ve written to the local water board, various wine growers and brewers  asking them to confirm their products are gluten free. Now I worry whether my petrol should also be gluten free, will it harm my engine.

A cynic – not me of course – make think it’s just a marketing ploy to exploit and rip off the gullable, thick, health freaky obsessives. Are you surprised that gluten free is always considerably more expensive.

But the facts prove it’s just another rip off fad, with a NORMAL loaf of bread costing £1, while gluten free costs £3.

Bear in mind that less than 1% of the population are coeliac. While many are convinced that – coeliac or not – avoiding gluten will make them healthier, a study published last year in the Journal of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics disagrees. It concluded: “There is no evidence to suggest following a gluten-free diet has any significant benefits in the general population.” “Indeed,” it continued, “there is some evidence to suggest that a gluten-free diet may adversely affect gut health in those without coeliac disease or gluten sensitivity.” Other research has indicated that gluten-free diets are often low in fibre and can be linked to deficiencies in B vitamins, iron and folate. Inevitably, in the US, a gluten-free backlash is already under way. “Coeliac: the Trendy Disease for Rich, White People”, is a typical recent headline in the popular blog, Science 2.0.

Unfortunately, the gluten-free community has even less tolerance for jokes than for pasta. Thankfully I can continue to eat macaroni pudding with impunity and at minimal cost, thats if I can persuade her indoors to cook it.

People often wonder why I’m keen on baked beans followed by macaroni pudding. Well when I was at “bilateral” school – best not to ask. I always went to my Grandmas for lunch – well not being posh we called it dinner. Every day she’d serve me baked beans, with a nob of butter of course, cooked until dry (anything less than 15 minutes and they’re raw). Followed by a macaroni pudding, also cooked to perfection – until dry and curling at the edges. Every day for four years. Then one day I asked “Grandma, do you think we could have a change of menu”? That was it, never got me baked beans or macaroni pudding ever again. What a deprived, or was it depraved, childhood.
 

Thursday – warm and downpour late afternoon.

 

Hmm... lets see this cakes for two. So why do we have a 35% fatty rate?

Hmm… lets see this cakes for two. So why do we have a 35% fatty rate?

Lazy morning for me. Wendy’s off to be Florence Nightingale. Lunch time I go for a MTB ride and then call in at the hospital for a complimentary coffee and read of the paper in their comfortable lounge area. Good to people watch all the Florences in their lime green blouses scurrying around and spending most of their time chattering away like Mocking birds on LSD.
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Then in the afternoon I’m doing training for my Robin Hood archery (a Nottingham lad) stint at the National Ability Center. Amazing place for the disabled and when you see what they achieve it’s quite right they use the word “ability”.

Bike home and get caught in a real downpour. Fortunately it’s very warm so it doesn’t really matter. Quite a change as I can’t remember the last time I got really soaked right through.

In the evening we’re off out to dinner at Tricy and Rivers (possible home exchangers). They live up in Deer (aptly named) valley. They have an awesome 5,000 square foot home. Only the FSM can guess at what or why you need 5,000 square feet. Good meal, good company, good conversation and good beer. They have 4 other guests for dinner so it’s lively conversation all round. One of the guys brews his own beer and brings a load of samples. They’re very good, not a bit like the home brews I last tasted. Have a very interesting conversation with him and get to sample an excellent Kolsch and a Pilsner, none of your typical American pinkle water.

National Ability Center archery range.

National Ability Center archery range.

Only in America.

Close by parking spaces at the gym for fuel efficient vehicles. I’ll define fuel efficient – LPG, electric or over 30 MPG (well it is America).

 

Friday – cloudy with rain thunder and lightning in the afternoon.

Angela does archery. Just look at that perfect release.

Angela does archery. Just look at that perfect release.

I’m on mountain host duty and Wendy’s at the hospital. Another easy day with the Friday crew.

In the afternoon the heavens open up and some thunder and lightning, every things shut down while it passes. We get to leave early.

Then it’s off out to dinner yet again. This time with Rick and Lynda, potential home exchangers. They have a lovely home up on Park Meadows. Just love the way American homes tend to be so open plan with kitchen, dinning and lounge all one big contiguous open area. Great evening, awesome food, wine and best of all company. Never ceases to amaze me how friendly and how much home exchangers have in common.

Just test driving a bike for the disabled. Hard work. Managed to crash it when a car tried to reverse into me.

Just test driving a bike for the disabled. Hard work. Managed to crash it when a car tried to reverse into me.

Please tell me the World hasn’t gone mad:

Liverpool confirm Luis Suárez’s £75m move to Barcelona pending medical. Who’s Luis Suarez? He’s a footballer who bit one of his opponents in the World cup. Not only that it’s the 3rd time he’s done it. Barbaric. What did FIFA do about it? A slap on the wrist and a few months ban. Why wasn’t he prosecuted for GBH or assault? These guys are role models for kids. Hey kids if someone upsets you, bite them. Over paid morons. Why wasn’t he banned for life. Instead he’s being transferred and will no doubt receive a big chunk of money. Sounds like some sort of experiment in creative stupidity. But it’s football, what can you expect?

 

Saturday – very hot and sunny.

 

Bump into a lady at the bus stop.

Tony: “That’s a nice dog. What make is it?”IMG_0834

Lady: “Oh it’s a spaniel / poodle cross.”

Tony: “We had a spaniel but it only had half a brain. Does he have a full brain?”

Lady: “I don’t know we adopted it!”

Owner obviously is the one with a half of a brain.
 
On duty as mountain hosts yet again. So hot just try to avoid the sun all day.
 
Then we’re off to the hospital staff party. Free food and entertainment at the National ability centre for all hospital staff, volunteers and their families.
 
They’ve a climbing wall, ropes course, archery and disabled bikes – well you know what I mean – for you to try.
 
I’m totally freaked out by heights.
 
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Don’t you just love the American obsession with food. They walk up with a giant burger, just drooling fat, calories and cholesterol, and are then distraught when they can’t get 52 ounce diet coke. Oh well have to make do with a normal coke. How can anyone drink 52 ounces of sugar or even saccharin?

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That's better. Just 3 feet to go.

That’s better. Just 3 feet to go!

What a great opportunity to try all these facilities. Will I try the climbs again now it’s off my bucket list? Who knows. I will still be petrified but I suppose familiarity will help overcome this fear.

Let’s not forget however that all these facilities at the NAC are in the main for the disabled. Yes, they get people with disabilities up to these heights and even have a shaky wooden bridge over 50 feet up that you can go across in a wheelchair. Can you imagine the sense of achievement these kids, and adults, must feel.

20140621 – Exploding tyre; Mormon overdose, but still only one wife

Saturday – sun and cloud. Warm.

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Up early to return the Hertz mobile and then off to play at Mountain Hosting. We each get 12 park passes which we can use to give free rides for friends and family.

Tod brings in donuts for his team – very much an American thing.Real nice gesture. Good god if I’d have done that in the Arc they’d have had me declared insane and carted me off.  Easy day on the Plaza. You do have to stand back in amazement at the public at large. Kids climbing on rock while parents stand by and ignore our requests for them to get down; mountain bikers suddenly going deaf or loosing the ability to comprehend English (well American really) as they’re asked to walk.

Classic for the day is family whose daughter stayed in England. Daughter couldn’t remember the name of the small village. Then comes the classic “Can you think of the name of it?”. 2 months later we’ll have probably gone through the name of them all. Never mind at least they got the
country right – we hope.

There’s a free bike demo day on the mountain. You get to try out as many bikes as you like for free. Can you believe some of these bikes cost $7,000 or more. Starting price seems to be around $2,000. Pop up seats at the touch of a button, carbon fibre frames, gears galore, suspension front and rear, and loads of other gizmos seem to be in abundance. Put’s my $200 Walmart special in it’s place. Mind you it does the job for me.

Sunday – warm, sun and cloud.

After our 5 days in the wilderness, on the go 12 hours a day plus yesterdays hosting we’re ready for a day of rest.IMG 4209 You have to give religion some brownie points, they certainly got the day of rest concept right.

I go off for a mountain bike ride around Round Valley. Tried my first blue run, mainly because I was lost. Certainly shakes me eyeballs out, worse than riding a pneumatic drill in speedos. I’ve lost all sensation in me hands. Can someone go and move all them rocks please.

In the evening we watch TV. Geez, 9 episodes of pure retarded crap. Geez, the 10th was good, even if the ending was ludicrous. Geez, thank the FSM it’s all over. Paul Bunyan and Babe the blue Ox can relax, no more being portrayed as back country knuckle draggers. What am I on about? It’s that dam Fargo series. We must have been stupid to watch anything past the first episode.

Monday – warm and sunny, again.

Wendy’s off doing her Florence Nightingale good deed for the week. I’m off for for a hike.

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Catch a free ride up Crescent lift. Pick up Mid-Mountain trail across the mountain and then down Armstrong trail back to the base. I thought these walks would be up and down the ski runs I know so well. Thankfully they’re not. They zig zag up the mountain. When you cross a blue ski run you look up and down, wonder how the hell you ever ski down it and thanks the FSM that you don’t have to walk up or down it. When you cross a black run you look up, but avoid looking down, to horrendous to contemplate.

A great 9.5 mile “Hike” in 3.5 hours.2,308 calories equates to 4 bottles of wine.

Interesting how the word “Thank you” seems to be disappearing from the American language. As you step aside to let bikers past, without them needing to loose momentum, it never ceases to amaze me how many of them are such scrots that they can’t even say thank you. What’s happened. America never used to be like this. When we
first started coming we were amazed at the politeness and good manners of all, inkling and especially the youngsters. Obviously down to the parents. You only have to encounter Angela to realise what good manners really are.

Attended the briefing by PCMR’s lawyer on the PCMR v Taliker / Vail fiasco.

They’ve ALL got to go to mediation and report back to judge by 8/17/14.

If that doesn’t resolve the issue then 8/27 back to court. Judge could force eviction but sounds unlikely. PCMR would appeal to Utah Supreme Court anyway. Once all the issues have been tried the judge cannot deny them an appeal, at the moment they haven’t all been tried.

Appeal could take 18 months. Lawyer is more confident that SC will come in their favour as Utah currently IMG 4214 pplies a very strict interpretation on late renewal, whereas the majority of the country tends to use the “fountain rules” for deciding such issues – sounds a more common sense method. Trial judges have to strictly interpret the law whereas SC can change / influence.

Looks like the only winners will be the lawyers, now there’s a surprise, as if mediation doesn’t resolve it there will be 2 more high fee years. Even if they fail in the Utah SC it can be referred to US SC, more bigger fees / delays.

PCMR seem to be in a good position as they own base, water rights and there’s a ban on major developments on the mountain by Vail etc as a condition of them building the Montage.  Good analogy is Vail may own the dinning room (mountain), but the kitchen, tap water and car park (base area) are owned by PCMR.

Tuesday – warm and sunny.

Lazy morning.

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Biked 6 miles on my Round Valley route and then there was a giant explosion, just as I was getting the some speed up and the wind ruffling my hair. Thought I’d been attacked by a Taliban sniper, but front inner tube had exploded and was split. Had to walk home. Although to be fair, in typical American friendly fashion, two fellow MTB’s stopped and offered to fix my tyre for me with their spare inner tube. Moral of the story, 1 don’t pump your tyres up to high; 2 carry a spare inner tube; 3 carry a small pump.

Nat and Paul arrived in the afternoon. Pleasant evening meal and time catching up.

Wednesday – warm and sunny, again.

Did our tourist guide thing and took Nat and Paul into Park City for a tour of Main Street. Followed by a pleasant lunch at the Bridge Cafe. Then free ride up Town lift and down Payday to see the mountain scenery. Paul and I have a free ride down the zip line.

Thursday – cool and rain in the evening.

Take Nat and Paul down to Salt Lake to visit Mormon Temple Square. We got our daily dose of religion.

Excellent free (my sort of word) tour around the Mormon Temple Square. Mormons are so pleasant and respectful. When we’re volunteering on the mountain you can always tell the Mormons who have been on their two year mission by their demeanour and way they speak to you, it really does seem to teach them great interaction skills, respect and consideration for others. They certainly have no problems coping
with most of my probing questions, although they did struggle a bit with issues on hell and bronze, silver and gold membership of heaven.

As usual all very interesting, including an impressive 1 hour film, and unlike most churches and religious sites no one had their hand in my pocket ferreting for money.

Decided not to sign up. One wife is more than enough.

Lovely dinner in the Garden restaurant overlooking Temple Square followed by Mormon Tabernacle Choir rehersal – free. Cheeky devils were singing “My country, tis of thee” to the our National Anthem. Resisted the temptation to stand and sing our National Anthem, although Wendy did have to be restrained by Nat and Paul.

Friday – cool and cloudy.

Nat and Paul set off to continue their tour and visit Idaho. Is there anything there other than Sun Valley ski resort and a lot of potatoes.

Trip down to Home Depot, with Hal, to buy a umbrella for our deck. You so need the shade here, the sun just fries you. Home Depot’s an experience, just like B&Q but on steroids. Wendy looks after Angela, making paper flowers, drawing and no visit from Angela would be complete without some iPad time.

Saturday – hot and sunny.

It’s mountain hosting day yet again. These days fly round.

Yet more joys of the American public unleashed. Todays little gem comes from a couple who wanted to fly down the Zip Line. I explain all about it and what a great ride it is. “So how do we get down?” With an incredulous look I reply “You come down the zip line”. “Yes, but how do we get down from the top?”. This conversation is repeated at least 3 times when before they finally grasp the concept.

 

20140610 – Zip Lines, Roller Coaster rides, Mountain Biking and Hiking

Tuesday – hot and sunny.

Quicklook Roundvalley

I’m up and out to Round Valley for a mountain bike ride. A bit like a skiing holiday this.

First mountain bike ride without the need for a 2 gallon jar of Swarfega. Gears fixed, whatever happened to proper gears like Sturney Archer – probably they worked and too simple.

70F at 09:00 and the suns beaming down. I feel like a member of the foreign legion in the Sahara. Sadly there’s no lifts or coffee shops. My lungs are ready to burst, the sweats dripping down and my hearts about to do a great impression of an islamic martyr as he starts his journey in search of paradise. And these are only the green and blue trails. Then my exhaustion is pales into insignificance as a mountain bluebird crosses my path and poses on a branch, saying look at me. Look at my gorgeous blue colours. Then I spy a yellow headed blackbird.

Skiing is so much easier.

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What an awesome start to the day.

After lunch we both take a bike ride down the farm trails to Kimble Junction. More awesome views from this bike path. And just look at the design simplicity and style of that fence.

Coffee at Starbucks. Of course we visit to a few shops. Wendy doesn’t fancy the ride all the way back up hill, so we catch the bus. I do the gallant thing and accompany her. Yes, you can take your bikes on the FREE bus. They have proper bike racks at the front and even let you take them inside.

Wednesday – hot and sunny.

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Today both of us aim to do a hike up Jenni’s trail. That way we can tell guests what it’s like. It’s about 90 minutes to the top of the zip lines, where we stop for lunch. Well an energy bar for Wendy and some water for me. Wot no Starbucks. Then it’s about a further 90 minutes to the top of Payday lift. Mind you we did get a tad lost.

Half way up we come across a giant mound of snow blocking the trail. Who said there’s no snow up here? Just need to pop back home and get them skis. Sadly it’s like a dirty arthritic slush puppy rather than the normal champagne powder.

Well done Wendy, you made it without too many whinges.

Catch the Payday lift back down. 30 minutes, thank the FSM it doesn’t go these speeds in winter, we’d DSC04057only get two runs a day in.

Hal and Randy come round in the evening for dinner. A great evening putting the World to rights.

Thursday – hot and sunny, with a short sharp shower in the afternoon.

Wendy’s volunteering at the hospital.

I do my MTB loop around Round Valley. Getting slightly faster but still have to walk up a bit of Cammis. Mind as a 12 year old sage, who was also walking up, wisely pointed out “there’s no shame in walking up hill”.

Another great 12 mile MTB ride. Now for coffee / lunch with Wendy in the hospital restaurant.

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Take the Facebook English GCSE test. Amazed to get a B grade with 10/15. Not bad for someone who scraped though with just a pass in GCE (yes the proper exam) English. But, I still wish, I knew, where the, commas go.

Yes, that’s right, we’re eating hospital food. It’s delicious, unlike the tortured veg, mash and jelly slopped out at home.

Friday – hot and sunny, again.

Up and out on the bus to Silver Lake to hike (so much more manly than walk) the Mid Mountain trail to Park City.

Halfway along we stop off at the Montage. Sit on their deck having a coffee and iced tea (mind you we need 2nd mortgage to pay for it – great way to fritter away our kids inheritance), whilst being serenaded with live music – Bob Dylan style again.

Then it’s back to the hike. Mid Mountains a great trail. I could just about do this on my MTB, although there are some scary drop offs, so will wait until fitness and technique are improved in Round Vally.

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As Mid Mountains name implies, it more or less follows the contours half way up the mountain. Some awesome views, in and out the Aspens, and not too strenuous. Wendy makes the 9 miles with ease. Mind you there’s another 15 mile more of this trail down to the Canyons. Save that for another day.

Catch the Town lift down into Park City and then walk down to the supermarket for some supplies. As we’re car less – yes, very un American, I know – we have to do incremental shopping each time we pass the supermarket.

Saturday – cold and sunny.

Up early to catch the bus to PCMR. It Mountain Host volunteering day yet again. It’s quite cold (maximum 50F) so were in our jackets today and as luck would IMG 3962 ave it we’re dished out some long trousers to go with our uniform. Most welcome a day in shorts would have been freezing.

I get to test out the zip line again.That cold, my contact lenses nearly float away in the torrent of tears from the cold wind at 50 MPH. Certainly not a recommended ride for a cold day.

Quite enjoy it and our testing of rides on Monday, along with the hikes came in really handy when talking to guest and answering their questions.

Then in the evening it’s pleasant evening in with a Smoking Loon bottle of Merlot. Sadly my will power is not what it should be and had to finish the bottle. I blame it on World Cup Football blighting our TV screens and programming like a plague of locusts.

 

20140603 – Living The Dream – Part 2

Tuesday – grey weather.

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Up at the crack of sparrows to go to the airport. Stuart, our Home Exchange guest has kindly volunteered to take us. He only arrived at our place yesterday and we had a lovely evening meal with him, Lee and Jill. Always great to meet our guests. Got on really well, as usual it’s surprising how much us Home Exchangers have in common.

Flight was pretty good. Airports were they usual tedious, inconvenience and still never miss an opportunity to inflict as much misery as possible, I’d rather jump barefoot off a 6-foot step ladder into a 5 gallon bucket full of hedgehogs than go through an airport. Must say in mitigation Atlanta immigration was quickest we’ve ever been, despite two wide body flights having landed within 20 minutes of each other. Trust the French to get their first.

They now have a new system of self help screens that scan passport, take your photo and take finger prints. To supposedly speed things up. But you still have the ridiculous situation where you take your slip of paper to a customs officer who proceeds to stamp, stamp, stamp like a 2 year oldIMG 0807 with his first hammer. In Wendy’s case she had to do her finger prints again. But it was quicker.

Lounge at Atlanta International terminal was much better than the usual one. So there I am sat in me hiking boots relaxing, when I suddenly notice the sole of my boots hanging off like some tramp who’s just found them in a dustbin.

Real song and dance getting an isle seat for Wendy. Too long and tedious to relate here. Suffice it to say that Delta now have the “Golden Triangle Award for Sloppy Shoulders 2014”. More jobs worths than TSA employees at their daily lets screw with the passengers. Finally get it sorted at the gate. Done in 20 seconds. No problem.

Hertz screw up. Go to my designated slot, which is much too far for a Presidents Circle Member to walk. Giant SUV in there and not a small economy. Car stink like they’ve just finished milking a cow and the milks gone off. Too weary to change it, will swop it tomorrow in PC. Stopped at the exit. IMG 3885“You’ve got the wrong car”. “No I haven’t it was in my slot with my name lit up alongside it”.

Have to swap cars. By now the boiling blood is spluttering over the pavement. As compensation, to stem the rant, they offer me a car of my choice. End up with a nice new Kia Sorrento SUV.

Sad to say just lately Hertz seem to provide screw ups as a standard enhanced service level.

Arrive “home” about 22:30, nearly 24 hours door to door.

No more airports, TSA or terrahertz scanners for 3 months. Good to be back.

Wednesday – blue skies, sun and warm.

Wake up to blue skies and green mountains. No snow, apart from some very small pocket of champagne powder that has now aged with the sun to a crinkly, murky slush puppy. It’s sad to se a grown man cry!

House is all neat and tidy and welcoming. Just like arriving home. 

Just look at those awesome mountains and views. Meanwhile I can get really excited about the simplicity of this fence. No nails needed.

Lazy morning sorting things out, unpacking etc.

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Have a leisurely lunch round at Carols, on the patio of course. Need to get used to this out door living. Great to see her and Angela again.

After lunch Wendy gets her fix as she does her weekly shop, while I check out Starbucks to make sure they’re still functioning properly. They’re still as dodgy and two faced as Janus, with the brass nerve to expect me to pay taxes though. Never mind the EU’s got them in their bureaucratic sights.

Outside the local supermarket is this piano. It works. It’s in tune. It’s not chained down. People just sit down and bash out the odd tune. 

I pondered how long this would last in Blackburn? How long before the scrots bashed it? Graffitti? Steal it? Trash it? Use it for firewood? Take your pick.

Thursday – blue skies, sun and warm.

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Leisurely morning, again. Go and buy some hiking boots to replace my tramps specials.

Then it’s down to Salt Lake city for  Costco and an all American Mall to get some sunglasses.

Early evening I go up to the National Ability Centre for an orientation session and tour of the facilities. I sign up as a volunteer for archery. Would like to do the water skiing one if training and transport can be arranged.

This Aspen tree is on the side of our deck. It’s awesome to just watch the leaves shimmer in the sunlight on a windy day. Sadly the camera doesn’t capture it’s true glory.

Friday – blue skies, sun and warm.

Up to the Mountain Plaza for our uniforms and Mountain Host training. Todd get’s us kitted out and gives us some basic training ready for our debut as rookie mountain hosts. Takes most of the day. 

We both have to do one day a week as volunteers. Working together on Saturday, “thats nice”! WeIMG 3890 get a free season pass which cover summer and winter – hooray. Also get to go on all the rides for free and discounts in all the PCMR shops and restaurants.

Saturday – blue skies, sun and hot.

Day 1 as a  Mountain Host. Up early, don our new uniforms. Not forgetting our all important name badges and a great forage cap. Then the two rookies are let loose on an unsuspecting public.  No one warned me that I had to smile and be nice to people. Wendy’s quite comfortable with all this meeting and greeting, smiling and being nice to people. I’m sure that readers that know me, will be amazed to learn, that this is bit of a culture shock for Victor. Will I survive? Will I enjoy it? Will the customers cope? 7 hours of it.

A culture shock for me, I feel as if my lips have been stapled back to expose a permanent smile, like a braying donkey – painful, terrifying prospect. 

I survived. Even the poor unsuspecting public survived and so far not a single complaint.

But it does have it’s compensations for just 1 day a week. Annual ski pass. Summer pass for mountain biking, hiking and zip lines etc. Plenty of sunshine. Live Bob Dylan music from a guy who was more personable that the real thing. And of course a free uniform.

Have a nice day!

Start on the plaza at 10:00 after morning briefing and work through to 16:30 with an hour for lunch. It’s quite busy all day. I actually enjoy it. None of it’s rocket science and we’re both soon into the swing of it. By 16:30 my smile been riveted in place and my jaw aches.

Overall a good day and nice to chat to so many friendly Americans. Yes, I think I can cope with this.

Sunday – blue skies, sun and hot.

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After 5 hectic days; travelling; lunch and dinner with friends; shopping; training; mountain host volunteering; we’re finally car less.

Finally get out early to try some mountain biking. Park City was the first area to win an International Mountain Biking Association Gold Level award. Stick to the green / easy trails. Hard work. Think a better idea is up on lift, ride down. Skiing is so much easier and you don’t have greasy chains to contend with.

Blue skies; awesome mountain scenery; topped off with 8 different species of birds, including the magnificent, ginormous, vociferous Sandhill Crane; squirrels; chipmunks; but alas no sign of the coyotes. What a great start to the day.

Sunday afternoon at the Silly Market in Park City. Got off lightly just a coffe and drink. The credit card lives to hide in the dark, cobwebbed, depths of my wallet yet another day. We bump into Sylvia and Tomoku, Wendy’s fellow volunteers at the hospital.

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Well it looks like we’re almost certain to qualify for American citizenship as we’ve just barbecued burgers on our all American gas barbecue on the deck and dined out in the sun.

What can be more American than that. Not forgetting that we had Apple pie last Monday and enough calories in the form of cheesecake and death by chocolate to ensure we waddled home from Hal and Carols.

No doubt the Green Cards will be winging their way through our letter box as we speak.

Monday – blue skies, sun and hot..

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Decide to spend a day on the mountain trying out all the rides so that we’re better informed when talking to guests.

Catch the lift up for the Zip line. Wendy’s very nervous, but goes through with it. The longest in Utah. All over with after a 50MPH, 1 minute ride over the tree tops. Great. Then we try the Mountain coaster. A thrilling roller coaster toboggan ride down the mountain. Really enjoyable. Try the Flying Eagle where we sit side by side and do a short zip line ride up and then down. OK but wouldn’t want to pay for it. Finally Catch the lift up and try the mountain slide down. Enjoyable, I think Wendy must have worn her brakes out as she finally arrives minutes later, nearly had a whip lash case with the traffic jam she created.

An epic day, just being kids. All free to volunteer mountain hosts, including pictures. 

Sorry no time for rants. Victors just too busy. Perhaps normal service and comments on the religion of peace and all the craziness in the World will be resumed next time.

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20140312 – More Blue Bird days; It ain’t half hot; The kids arrive

Wednesday – cold blue bird day. 2” new snow over night. 

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Awesome mornings skiing with Carol. Snow was great. Even managed to sneak in and survive Silver King, along with a couple of other blacks and the double blue from hell – Sunrise. I think the speedometer on this app needs a little calibration.

Wendy spends the morning preparing the place for Kurt, Fiona and Jasper. What’s to prepare? Then in the afternoon she goes out with Carol and Angela. Shopping I think.

This guy just says it like it is. About time we had more of his rants http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5Z38qqSZZEc.

You can see and enjoy all his rants on YouTube.

Thursday – another blue bird day but no sign of Wendy. She’s volunteering at the hospital.

Another totally bodacious day. Snows great despite the heat wave. After yesterday’s tour de force with Carol todays theme is control. Lots of short turns to keep that speed down.

But will it last?

Tears as my old faithful, slipper comfort, 20 year old, rear entry ski boots are starting to IMG 0889drop to pieces. Nothing’s built to last these days. It’s either a new pair or some araldite.

Why do all the shops laugh at these antiques when I go in?

Sadly new pairs aren’t anywhere near as comfy.

Is this the sort of free speech and censorship we’ll have to tolerate when we become a muslim / sharia state:

The BBC has controversially dropped a debate on homosexuality from a live panel discussion show because of objections from Birmingham Central Mosque in which the programme was being filmed.

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As first reported by Breitbart London, the BBC Three live debate and discussion show aimed at young people, Free Speech, had intended to ask the question, When will it be accepted to be Muslim and gay? However the show’s host Rick Edwards, announced that the debate would not take place as planned. He told the audience:

We were going to debate that question today, but after speaking to the Mosque, they have expressed deep concerns with having that discussion here.

After agreeing to allow a programme called Free Speech to be filmed at the Mosque, it is absurd and counterproductive to then censor the topic being discussed.

It is unfortunate that the BBC allowed itself to be censored on this occasion by reactionary imams.

Am I surprised!

Friday – another blue bird day. Too warm.

Out for a serious days skiing before the kids arrive. End up stuck at the bottom of Silver Load. Lifts broke. 

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Still it could be worse, I’m by the log fire in the Snowhut, with fresh coffee, plus plenty of beer and good food if needed.

Pick up SUV from Hertz. What a palaver. They have a Nissan xterra crap mobile for me. Spend 5 minutes looking for the wing mirror adjustments, then Miss Hertz spends 5 minutes searching. Brand new 2014 vehicle and they’re manual wing mirrors. Will I have to advance and retard the spark? Where’s the little man with the red flag? Unbelievable.

Insist upon my free Presidents circle upgrade and then spend an hour loosing the will to live while they get their act together. They’ve had 3 weeks to get me a car. I really am starting to loose faith with them, every time just lately there’s a cock up. Madder than a baptist in a brothel.

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Pick up kurt, Fiona and Jasper at Salt Lake airport. They’re totally powfagged after 2 flights with a 10 month old fidget arse. But at least they’re here now. Wendy’s dead excited.

Muhammad’s Deadly Teachings about Personal Hygiene

Muhammad’s followers often went to him for advice on various topics. His advice, however, wasn’t always sound. According to Muhammad, it’s perfectly safe to use water that has human waste or dead animals floating in it. Muhammad promoted dunking flies in one’s food, in order to get the cure for the diseases that flies carry. Needless to say, these teachings are quite dangerous.

So if his word is so sacred why aren’t all muslims following his advice? Seems a little selective, picking and choosing what they like. Now there’s a surprise.

20140308 – Skiing in a Zimmer Frame. Is my skiing really that bad?

Saturday – too hot and very sunny. Melting the precious snow.

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Lazy day off skiing today. Wendy and I have volunteered with the NAC to help set up for the NAC’s Red, White and Snow gala dinner up at the Montage Hotel at Deer Valley. Spend the morning helping out; setting trees up; tables and chairs; hoisting trees up onto the balcony while Wendy helps layout the items for the auction. Dinner costs $4,000 for a table of 10, so do the maths. Then there’s the charity auction as well. Of course the Montage is a really plush hotel, cheapest room for a night is $1,150 plus taxes no doubt and tips of course. Costs more than we pay for 2 weeks in our superb home from home. It’s not called Deer Valley for nothing.

In the afternoon we have a bike ride to the supermarket – oh the excitement, oh how we live.

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Then we get to have afternoon tea – one has to have standards – sat on our deck in the brilliant sunshine. It was warmer out than in. I can see in summer we’re going to really enjoy this deck.

Of course no American home would be complete without a barbecue, and yes we have one. It’s a sizeable gas one, so we checked it out. It works! Just needs a good clean as it looks like the previous people must have barbed every day for a year and never bothered clearing away any of the debris. Nice job for Wendy.

Why is it that when I want to renew my tax disc I  have to provide either the 16 digit reference number shown on your renewal 
2014 RWS Logo FINAL reminder, or the 11 digit reference number from your Registration Certificate (also known as the Logbook) and your vehicle registration mark (number plate)?

Isn’t the reg no unique enough for you?
Why when I want to make an vehicle online enquiry you need the make as well as the Reg No?
Isn’t the reg no unique enough for you?

Are they frightened someone will pay my tax disc for me?

Sunday – a sunny blue bird day.

Meet Randy at 09:00 and have a great mornings skiing.

Hal was going to join us but it looks like he forgot that the clocks went forward so he didn’t make it.

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Wendy, Carol and Angela all go down to Salt Lake to see Disney on Ice. Wendy really enjoyed it. I passed as did Hal, apparently he fell asleep through it last year, and as I fell asleep through Toy Story 3 I thought I’d better pass.

Of course no afternoon out would be complete without a merchandising opportunity with a trip to Costco.

Spent the afternoon researching HTML5 and CSS3. Learning these two and then creating some web pages in them is my next project. I’ve decided to put my Physics on a back burner and try and keep my IT skills up to date for now. Who knows perhaps I could go and help out at the BBC iPlayer department. Certainly even an illiterate 5 year old could do better than that bunch of apologists for IT professionals. 

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Bought an Ultra Tough Ultrasteel Adjustable from Walmart, all for less than $2. Comes complete with a warning that “This Wrench contains chemicals known to the State of California to cause cancer and birth defects or other reproductive harm”. Fortunately this would appear not to be a problem in the other 49 states, as it miraculously must change it’s molecular structure to be less harmful, or is not “known” about. Now I know that the US is the land of litigation warnings that hot coffee can burn; that you should not put your dog in a microwave oven. But come on this warning has to be as stupid as the steel is tough.

Perhaps to be on the safe side I’d better hang the wrench 50 feet away from the house and hope that it doesn’t kill the tree, which probably has a preservation order on it.

Monday – cloudy, cold and very windy. With the promise of snow later in the day – let us pray.

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Up and skiing for 09:00. Fancied a “bit of black” – am I allowed to say that – today and for the first time since we’ve been here Widow Maker, a black diamond, has been groomed. Wendy can put away the insurance policy, I survived. Very pleasant, as was Dynamite. “A black diamond a day keeps the fear at bay.” But, I still ski with more style on a blue or double blue.

Have a great morning skiing and the snows pretty good. By 10:30 I’ve filled me ski boots and had some great runs. And yes my boots are still hanging in their but need the tender loving care of some Araldite. I do so hope they’ll survive. After 20 comfy years they’ve served me well and I’m really attached to them.

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Then I’m on volunteer duty at the NAC. Looks like my skiing’s that bad they put me in a 4 Track zimmer frame – a frame that has two skis already on, you can stand up in it with your ski’s on while, like a zimmer frame, while Jim, the instructor, has you tethered and takes you down the mountain – greens only as it’s too unstable on blues or blacks. See pictures. It’s part of a sign off process for Jim. My role is to play a 64 year old who used to ski; had a medical problem 5 years ago that made my legs weak; not been able to ski since; needs a zimmer frame to walk with. Jim’s being tested by Don, the education programme manager, to see if he’s ok to be let loose on teaching with a 4 track.

Good couple of hours. Certainly different. Don’t know whether Jim passed or not.

Weight loss is going well, as is the drinking. Down to my lowest weight for at least 10 years. 13St albs, in proper units of measure. That’s 19 lbs lost since November.

Wendy’s finished yet another knitting master piece. This time it’s a bobble hat, with extra big bobble as requested, for Jasper – see picture.

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Iranian TV shows a disgusting cartoon video (just to show that I harbour no bias a copy can be seen here) of Jews being gassed in the Holocost and even taking an inhaler of ZycloneB, the gas used in the gas chambers.Well it seems that the religion of peace doesn’t mind cartoons of Jews:

Yet, even a simple cartoon of Mo causes riots, burning, fatwas and killing in the name of that pernicious religion.

And to top it all, the islamic World ( yes I won’t even grace the word islam or muslim with a capital letter) now is banning the new film Noah. It seems that the film had been banned for reasons of religious intolerance. The film conflicts with all religions. Out of respect for these religious sentiments, we are banning the film.

The sunni muslim institute Al-Azhar issued a statement condemning the movie, saying it should be banned. It rejects the screening of any production that characterises allah’s prophets and messengers and the companions of the Mo [the religious character Muhammad].

Well that’s good enough recommendation for me. I’ll be sure not to miss the Noah film.

Tuesday – Sunny and cold with 6” powder snow overnight. As it should be.

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Volunteer for the NAC at Deer Valley. Why is it when I volunteer it’s a powder alert day?

Talk about a complete body workout. It’s a really tough session as  the young girl we’re supporting has very little use in her legs and we have to help her to walk and manoeuvre her on skis. Lots of snow ploughing and pulling her along on skis. At one stage she get’s that tired that we have to call the ski patrol to sledge her down to the bottom of the mountain. By 12:00 I’m knackered too. However manage a great afternoons skiing at Deer Valley.

Hal, Carol and Angela come round and we set up baby gates and cots ready for Jaspers arrival.

Here he goes again:

THE hate preacher Anjem Choudary and his followers could face prosecution under anti-IMG 0913terrorism laws after appearing to promote al-Qaeda-linked groups on a busy London high street while demanding the creation of an Islamic state.

Extremists drove up and down the road in a white van emblazoned with a logo synonymous with jihadists in Syria. They also handed out badges featuring the symbol to children.

Haven’t we had enough of this joker who has 4 children, sponges off the state he despises and wants to see overthrown. When will someone grow some gonads and chuck him out the country to somewhere that has the Sharia law he so pines for. I’m all for human rights etc but this scrot is just trying to chop off the right hand and left foot of the all the infidels that feed him. France have had the guts to ban him. Lets use the democracy that he so despises and pass a “common sense” law, kicking him out.

20140206 – Snow, snow, snow 29″; National Ability Centre Volunteer; Standard letter of complaint to lazy Companies

Thursday – cold with some snow. 

Lazy start to the day as I accompany Florence Nightingale to the bus. She’s off to the hospital. Hit the slopes for 11:00. Get a really lazy 5 runs in, boy it’s colder than a well diggers arse in January.

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Invention of the Week is a “smart bra” that only unhooks when its inbuilt sensors, which monitor a woman’s heart rate, reach a level that indicates she’s . . . “excited”. Only the Japanese could dream up such a perversion of technology for technologies sake. Perhaps next they’l invent a chocolate oven complete with matching app, or a thong that starts singing when you’re nervous. Mind you it could be interesting as it pings open, and they flop out, every time the women sees something in the sales, or something that excites or frightens her.

Thought for the day:

If muslims got rid of the death penalty as punishment for apostasy I wonder how many muslims there would be left?  

Friday – snow and clouds.

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Dumped 5” overnight and best news is it was after grooming so an awesome, hard work powder day.

Of course if Ross was here I’d be able to hear some exotic superlatives as I ride the bumps. Awesome, but me legs are burning. Sadly no powder alert so I missed the best of it with a lazy 10:00 start. Need to rely on the snow plow as my powder alert. If there’s been a dump overnight then they’re out at about 04:30, more reliable than the Park City email.

Just to get a bit more exercise I stroll around to the gym in the evening for a “Free”, how I love that word, Yoga session. It was pretty brutal but i survived. Never seen so many bends and twists, felt like a cross between a wet rag and a pretzel. Unlike a British yoga session it was surprising to see men out numbering women.

Invest in some scales. Amazing how well the TE Ski Diet works. 6 lbs lost in 6 weeks, without having to cut back on alcohol. I’m at my lowest weight for what must be at least 10 years.

 

Coverage of the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia, has so far been over-shadowed by the threat of terror from Islamic jihadists. Cursing videos posted on the Internet by jihadists promise that the “demon Olympics” will have an “atmosphere of fear and terror” and tell the athletes that “Satan is with you.” Even Egyptian-born al-Qaeda leader Ayman Al-Zawahiri gave his blessings by calling for a “global jihad” against the Sochi games.

Muslim jihadists watch the games with bitterness, envy and criticism. Competitive sports are not an important Islamic value, especially if compared to the mental and physical training of Islamic youth for jihad. It is important to note that Islamic culture often discourages competitive sports, singing, dancing and self-expression, and this is the fundamental reason why there are few prominent Muslim athletes. Soccer seems to be the main event for them. Of course female contenders have to cover themselves in case any perverts should become tumescent with anticipation at the site of their hair, face or ankles.

Perhaps a new sport of “explosive jihad” should be added to the Olympics. Could be judged on who goes off withe the biggest bang. I’m sure only fundamentalist from the religion of peace would be sick enough to participate, thereby eliminating more scrots.

Saturday – snow all day and not so cold, relatively.

14” of fresh powder overnight. I didn’t hear the snow plow this morning though, and the volume IMG 0717was turned down on the iPad so I didn’t hear the phone call to tell me there was a powder alert. Fortunately, well not actually,  I’m doing my National Ability Centre (NAC) training today. So the best powder day since we’ve been here and I miss it. Life can be so cruel. But then when you see the disabled skiers the NAC takes out on the mountain you appreciate how lucky you are. What really blows my mind is watching these blind skiers. Can you imagine what that must be like, it really freaks me out.

Learnt how to lift the various skiing aids, complete with disabled student, on and off the chairlift; correct PC terminology, I’ll no doubt excel in this area; how to act as a blocker to stop loony boarders, and the occasional skier, crashing into disabled skiers; how to pick them up if they fall. But no one mentioned that because you’re interacting with the equipment you have to ski without poles. Years since I did this and amazing how difficult it can be.

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Looks like I’ve found out what my facial recognition problem is. I think I’m suffering from prosopagnosia, facial agnosia or better known as face blindness. Face blindness is thought to be the result of abnormalities, damage, or impairment in the right fusiform gyrus, a fold in the brain that appears to coordinate the neural systems that control facial perception and memory. It’s no joke when I watch a film I have real difficulty distinguishing characters unless there are 1 male; 1 female; 1 blond or each sex; 1 dark haired of each sex; beards are good, but preferably not on women; black of each sex works; baldies help. It can be quite disturbing at times, like when I went to pick our grand daughter up and wasn’t entirely sure which one she was. Fortunately I’m ok recognising Wendy as she’s the only female in the house.

Only in the UK:

David Cameron was forced to accept the resignation of his Immigration Minister today after he employed an illegal migrant as his cleaner.

Mark Harper said that he had been shown documents by his employee showing that she had indefinite leave to remain in the United Kingdom but he discovered this week that they were forged.

Sunday – too warm, cloudy with snow.

12″ more fresh powder so drag me sen out of bed and catch Eagle for that unadulterated virgin IMG 2286powder. Not champagne powder though, more like skiing through 6″ of salt. Still awesome and worth the supreme effort. A tad busy up there, but not as bad as a Saturday. Get spoilt by the quiet of the weekdays. For the first time my powder skiing seems to be coming together. Lean back more, lean into curves and keep low. Leaning into the heels seems to be the answer.

Guy on Eagle lift told me the UK won a skiing medal. Nearly fell off the lift in amazement.

By 11:30 it’s a whiteout. Time to make tracks for home. My bodies gyroscope gets very confused when it doesn’t know up from down, especially at 20 mph and above.

I think I’m having a time white out. Totally confused on what day of the week it is.

Wendy gets to talk to the kids, FaceTime is great. Have a chat with Kevin and Rosemary, really is just like being there, but without the wine.

Finally start to catch up on the winter olympics. Given that we’re skiing we should make the effort.

Well we’ve got HBO, fortunately on free trial for 3 months, but so far we’ve not bothered with it. BBC, UK channels and Netflix have more than enough to offer. HBO’s only strong point seems to be no adverts.

Well swat my hind with a melon rind, do my eyes deceive me? Has the EU finally grown some gonads:

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The European Union has called for Saudi Arabia to respect the public worship of all faiths.

The European Parliament said that while Saudi Arabia was an important strategic partner, Saudi authorities should accept that it is a human right for individuals to worship any religion in public.
Issues like terrorism, Israeli-Palestinian peace, the Syrian conflict, post-Arab-Spring transition, and better relations with Iran, were all key areas in which the EU said Saudi co-operation was needed. However, it made clear that if this partnership is to be effective, [Saudi Arabia] must respect basic human rights and civil liberties .

MEPs demanded that the Saudi state show respect the public worship of any faith and to foster moderation and tolerance of religious diversity. Saudi Arabia has an abysmal record on religious freedom.

In February 2013, the Grand Mufti of Saudi Arabia, Abdulaziz ibn Abdullah Al al-Sheikh said it is necessary to destroy all the churches in the Arabian Peninsula.

Apostasy – conversion from Islam to another religion – is a crime punishable by death and Saudi Arabia is one of the last countries in the world where public executions still take place.

Monday – I think.
 
29” new snow over the past 3 days. Today’s a bit of a white out but  with 2 – 6″ fresh powder on topIMG 2273 of corduroy it’s bodacious skiing. Worth the early start. Had a good mornings skiing -10 runs before lunch. Wendy had a walk to Einstein Bagels for a breakfast selection and then walked up to Payday to meet for lunch. Well tea and coffee.
 
Then later in the afternoon I need a bit more exercise so we have a walk into town to the bank and supermarket for some beers.
 
Catching up on the Winter Olympics and yes we did win a medal in snowboarding.
 
Here we go again with more censorship and attacks on freedom of speech:
 
Atheist students at a London South Bank University have had a poster featuring a flying spaghetti monster banned by union officials, out of fear that religious students would be easily offended by it.

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The South Bank Atheist Society (SBAS) poster featured the monster in place of God in a mock-up of Michelangelo’s famous Creation of Adam fresco from the Sistine Chapel, but it was removed from the freshers’ fair last week.

South Bank Atheist Society president Choe Ansari said:
This incident is just one of a catalogue of attempts to censor our society. I never expected to face such blatant censorship and fragile sensibilities at university. I thought this would be an institution where I could challenge beliefs and in turn be challenged.

All I have seen is religious sensibilities trumping all other rights with no space for argument, challenge or reasoned debate. It is not what I expected when I came to university.

Union censors at the London South Bank University removed the posters from the society’s stall overnight and then barred representatives from printing off more, ludicrosuly citing the visibility of Adam’s genitals as offensive. But when society members offered to blur out the genitals, they were told the problem with the poster concerned religious offence.
 
I hope these poor over sensitive religious fanatics realise they’ll never get to FSM Heaven – miss out on the Beer Volcanoes and Stripper Factories.
 
Tuesday – sun, cloud, a little snow and very cold.
 
Up on the slopes for 08:30 ready for my first NAC volunteer session – is this really an holiday.

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Great morning as a volunteer helping an instructor with a youngster, who’s disabled, ski on one of these mono skis. These kids are awesome. The instructor was in one of these mono skis too.  
 
Youngster and instructor survived my first day. Only ended up in the ski lift pit once due to problems pulling the student onto the lift. It’s all more difficult than it looks, bearing in mind that you have to ski with no ski poles, and with your skis on, you have to pull the student up if they fall over. 
 
Puts my skiing to shame. Notice the title National ABILITY Centre. The real emphasis being on ability. 
 
Then, after 3 hours helping, I just catch a much needed coffee followed by some serious skiing, with poles thankfully.
 
Now I know the Americans have managed to screw with the language they were given, but hey, on the crowded bus today no one apart from the driver and Wendy spoke English or anything vaguely resembling it. Looks like they have the same problems we have.
 

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Now this is what I’d often like to do as a result of all those crap websites and software out there.Needs to be 2nd floor or above. The higher the better.
 
Don’t you just love those lazy, good for nothing companies that send you emails telling you how much you owe, your car hire details etc., yet expect you to log into their bloody awful site to find out the full picture, like BT, Hertz, Halifax, Santander and the list goes on. Well here’s my boiler plate (cross out those, if any, that don’t apply) complaints letter I’m sending to them.
 
Dear Sir / Madame

Yet again you’ve sent me an email telling me:

I owe you money / my car hire is due / my flight is due / renewal is due / asking for a meter reading / …………………………………………. but forcing me to log into your site to find out the relevant details. Makes me madder and hotter than a program trying to divide by zero.

Has it never occurred to you that, I’m the customer who pays your wages, and rather than allowing the greedy little nerds in marketing department try to engage with me by getting me to log into your:
awful / useless / badly designed / confusing / common senseless web site.
 
In the hope that you can sell me something else, you could treat me with the courtesy and respect I as a customer deserve by:

Having a URL in the email (ask your IT department what it is if you haven’t a clue) that takes me direct to your web site with just one click. It’s not not rocket science, trust me, and most email apps even have a simple insert facility.

Have a URL (by now you’ll know what one is) that not only takes me to your web site but also fills in my name. Wow wouldn’t that be better. If your IT department don’t know how then sack them and get someone who does.

Have a URL that takes me to you web site and even logs me in. Again not rocket science very doable.

Have a URL that takes me to you web site, logs me in and present me with the appropriate page of the details I need. Again very doable.

Better still tell me if:

there is nothing to pay / it’s just the regular monthly payment with no extras / it’s below £x.

Therefore saves me the trouble of going into you web site.

Better, better still, tell me in the email, the summary details and provide me with a URL link direct to your web site for a complete transaction list.

Better, better, better still tell me in the email the relevant details, amounts and dates to save me going anywhere near your accursed web site. Wouldn’t that be heaven.

Now I know if you can even be bothered to answer this complaint you spring to the notorious, totally misunderstood and abused “Data Protection” defence. Because of course Joe public doesn’t have the wit to understand that. You think you can blind us with legalese and make us think you’re doing us a great service by “protecting us”. But I suggest before you do so, you take the trouble to read the Data Protection Act 1998 and consider which of the 8 principles would be contravened by such a common sense, customer focused, ease of use approach.

If your IT department tell you that any of the above is impossible then I suggest you:

sack the lot of them and replace them with some competent programmers / pay me a reasonable fee to organise it / sack you marketing department replacing them with customer focused, common sense individuals / better still sack the marketing department anyway, they’re usually the source of all evil, don’t give a post it note about the customer. Once you start to focus on the needs of the customer rather than trying to manipulate him you’ll find that success follows.

Now in all my years I’ve never dealt with a more hopeless company than Comcast, they’re a nightmare to deal with, you could do a comedy series on their antics, but just to rub it in they seem to have got the hang of it when it comes to emails for payment:

Dear Comcast Customer,

Your monthly bill is now available. Please sign in to My Account to view your bill and other important messages or notices regarding your Comcast services. 

Bill Overview

Amount Due: $36.59
Payment Due Date: 02/27/2014


Account Information

Account Number: ****1234
Service Address: 1234 ANY STREET
  PARK CITY, UT 123456

Note: If you are enrolled in automatic monthly payments, your payment will automatically be deducted from your bank account or charged to your credit card on the payment due date.

If you have any questions regarding your bill, please visit our Help and Support Site for more information. 

Thank you for being a valued Comcast customer.

Sincerely,

Comcast



Simples. The bills within tolerance so I don’t have to waste any more time on it. Not only do they send you the above but they also send you a brief video that explains “your” bill using actual values. All without needing any log in or other crap. How neat is that?

If they can do it why can’t you? 

You’ll have to forgive me for this boiler plate letter but there are so many other companies out there who don’t give a dam for their customers that I’ve had to resort to this approach and please make allowances for the syndrome I suffer from. It doesn’t have a medical name, yet, but basically I go through life thinking: I’m a customer; I pay your wages; I’m important to you; I expect some common sense; I expect you to test out your web sites; I expect you to test your letters; and you should be making my life as easy as possible. You’ll be glad to hear that I’m not a danger to myself or the public, although your antics do make my blood boil and induce in me a strong desire to come around to bang heads together and hand out brown envelopes with a P45 in them.

Yours With Boiling Blood

Tony 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

20140131 – Superbowl party; Very Cold; Domestic Servitude; Daily Routine

Friday – cold with some snow, sun and clouds.

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Have a pleasant mornings skiing. A lot of runs are still fairly churned up so skiing is a tad harder than usual, but compared to yesterdays powder it’s a breeze.

Wendy’s doing her Florence Nightingale thing, meeting greeting and chatting. It’s a hard life.

Just sat having a well deserved coffee in the Snow Hut and thinking about how I could still be a nerd behind a desk with 11 months to go before retirement, instead I’m just a nerd with 7 Sundays a week to enjoy. On that thought Its time to man up and get another 5 runs in. 

For a bit more exercise we have a walk around to Carols to pay the rent and then on to the liquor store. Ran out of Merlot and need a 6 pack for Sundays Superbowl game. I don’t know who designed this haversack of mine but they certainly never considered two boxes of wine and a 6 pack of lager as an essential.

Just cleared the patio of our latest snow offering. Not even a single bead of sweat. Now I’m either getting fitter or it’s too dam cold to even sweat. I’m going with the fitness theory.

Watched a very interesting Youtube on Americas immigration policy. They kindly let 1 million of the Worlds poor in every year. However, there are over 3 billion who meet the poor criteria, so this represents 0.03 of a percent and doesn’t even keep up with birth rate. Even if they increased this 10 fold it still would make no impact or keep up with the birth rate. However, what was even more significant is that the 1 million who do make it to the USA were almost certainly the best educated and able. Therefore a brain drain and depleting the 3rd World countries of a key resource that could do more good if they stayed in their own country. 

Good intentions and unintended consequences!

Off – energy-efficient

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Old – chronologically gifted, Gerontologically Advanced, Senior Citizens

Panhandler – Unaffiliated applicant for private-sector funding.

Paper Bag – processed tree carcass

Perverted – Sexually dysfunctional.

Plagiarism – Previously Owned Prose

Al-Qaeda groups operating in Syria have set up three bases in southern Turkey to train foreign fighters for terrorist attacks on the US and Europe, according to intelligence sources.

Hang on is this the same Turkey that wants to join the EU?

Saturday – very cold, sun, cloud and we get a tad more snow.

No skiing today.

Winning some browny points with Wendy. Browse round Main Street. Wendy buys a vivid green Patagonia fleece. If it’s half as durable as my 20 year old one she’ll certainly get her moneys worth. Then it’s domestic servitude as we head to the supermarket for fortnightly shop.

For some mysterious reason we get separated. Devastated. Wander around disorientated until I see a familiar site, Starbucks. Pop in for a rest and escape the cold and snow. It would be a tad rude not to have a coffee when I’m using their free wifi. Perhaps my maps app may help me eventually find the supermarket. 

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Taxi home – feel like the taxi brigade you see outside Asda, but it’s cheaper than hiring a car and the bus service is awesome. We seem to be managing very well without a car and the walking / bus is quite enjoyable, especially as we’re in no rush. To go skiing is just a 4 minutes walk to the bus stop, then a 20 minute bus ride. Mind you walking in 10lbs of ski boots carrying skies, heavier than two Malibu surf boards, is some good exercise in it’s own right. But, when I consider that renting lockers etc for overnight storage would cost about $800 over the season – I wouldn’t mind a whole seasons ski pass, including summer cost only $650 –  makes all that weight just float away. Wendy, now being a fully qualified, over 65 pensioner, can even get a season pass for $530 – less than the full cost of 5 day tickets.

They say you never stop learning. Well today I learnt to make sure to layer up even when not skiing. Never been as cold on this trip. In addition Long Johns would have at least helped, it was colder than a brass toilet seat on the shady side of an iceberg.

Welsh rarebit and baked beans for tea – me favourite. Slight variation as the bacon over here is tissue paper thin and shatters when you stick a fork in it, so instead it’s spicy Italian sausage – awesome.

Just 24 hours before Hals Superbowl party tomorrow. Need to get me head around American Football by then. May seem trivial to some but bear in mind I don’t even understnad English Football and am clueless, thankfully, on the offside rule. Looking forward to such an American experience. 

All this exercise seems to be paying off walking, even up hills or the stairs, is no longer the effort it was.

Policeman, Policewoman – law enforcement officer 

Poor – economically marginalised, Economically Unprepared, monetarily challenged

Postman – letter carrier

Pregnant – parasitically oppressed.

Prisoner – client of the correctional system

Sunday – blue sky and colder than a witch’s nipple in a brass bra doin’ push-ups in the snow.

Up and at em for 09:00. Get me 10 runs a day in, beats the gym anytime. Snow’s in fine fettle with that lovely creaking sound as you glide over. It’s that cold that the trees are still covered in snow, IMG 2250everywhere you look is like Christmas post code panorama. Just being up here on the mountains is awesome. If you don’t ski then you obviously don’t know what you’re missing, if you do then you’ll appreciate what I’m raving on about.

Back home for late lunch time with just enough time to chat to everyone back home and get ready for our great American experience. No it’s not another trip to Comcast, it’s Hal’s Superbowl Party.

How to back the wrong team – Sea Hawks 43 / Broncos 8. A YouTube video with lemons and oranges explained the game. Sad to see the only lemons on the pitch were Denver. The Sea Hawks just wiped the floor with the Broncos. It seemed to me that speed and agility, rather than brute force, body mass and big guts, won the day.

Wow they can sure stretch a 60 minute game out, 4 hours with adverts. More adverts than during an American movie. Alas no Janet Jackson to spice things up. Great afternoon. Some quality beers, great food and great company. An all American experience. I think by now, with help from Hal and friends, I at least understand the basics of the game. What amazes me is the unsung hero who invisibly manages to nip out and paint a new Yellow 10 yard line after each Down.

Prostitute – sex care provider

Psychobabble – constructivist feminist psychotherapy

Psychopath – socially misaligned 

Racist – genetically discriminating

Really Big Nosed – nasally disadvantaged

Monday – blue sky and very cold again.

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Lazy start to the day. Hit the slopes for 10:00. Wendy stays home knitting. Sadly only 1 black diamond groomed, Belmont. Very steep and short. Have two goes on it in order to get me moneys worth.

Very lazy day just get 5 runs in and then home for lunch – grapes and giant strawberries, oh so sweet though.

Finally get to listen to the Obama’s State of The Union Address. As I said last year, if he can achieve 25% of what he rattles on about he’d get my vote, but alas he failed to get any of his top 2013 State of the Union priorities through Congress. Congress ignored his calls for a new jobs program, for new gun controls and for sweeping immigration reform.

This year he spends a lot of time ticking off congress for inaction and failure; threatens a lot of independent action, executive orders I suppose if he doesn’t get his way; allegedly he’s going to get it done with or without congress. Certainly a good orator, can talk the talk. Mind you some of it came over like a pregnant pole vaulter, especially judging by the grimaces and face of the guy behind him on his left. I quite enjoy American politics, the good thing is it doesn’t affect me. Whereas watching question time or the incessant programmes on scroungers and scrots get me madder than a pack of wild dogs on a three legged cat.

We were stupid enough to watch “The Big Benefits Show”, a real blood boiler. Very biased in favour of scroungers and scrots. Must have selected both audience and panel especially.  How can you class pensioners as being on benefits, we’ve paid in for a pension all our working lives and I don’t believe for one moment the figures they quoted on percentage of scroungers / fraud. Simple solution to it all. Workfare. Then you put something back in for the benefit you receive. And for those that object to it then, tough, I for one don’t care about anyone who objects to such a fair solution. It would be interesting to see how many of the scrounging scrots then got a proper job.

Redneck – person of region, rustically inclined

Refugees – asylum seekers 

Road Kill – Vehicularly Compressed Maladapted Life Form 

Rudeness – Tact Avoidance 

Runny Nose – nasally gifted

Now I know the liberals brains have finally dropped out:

Nick Clegg has admonished one of his party’s parliamentary candidates, Maajid Nawaz, for tweeting a cartoon of Jesus and Muhammad .

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So what choices do we have in 2015. Labour who’ll fritter all the hard work and financial progress away in the shake of a scorpions tail on benefits and populist policies with no common sense. Liberals who just pander to Islam and immigration. UKIP who have some great policies on immigration and a strong emphasis on UK, but seem to be a complete vacuum on anything other and have some of the looniest candidates. Or stick with the conservatives, they’ve turned the economy around and are realistic about further debt reduction and strong fiscal policies.

Sadly they’re all about as useful as buttons on a dish cloth

Personally I’d vote for any party that has a skerrick of common sense; puts the UK first; kicks multiculturalism into the failed loony bin it belongs in; bans the burkha and stops pandering to Islam, if they want to be here then you’re welcome, but don’t expect the UK to bend over backwards and be shafted; get us out of Europe; abandons all foreign aid and looks after UK first; introduces Workfare for anyone on benefits for more than 2 weeks, no exceptions. 

Tuesday – blue sky, very cold then snow storm in the afternoon.

Up at the crack of sparrows as we had 2” fresh snow yesterday. Get me 10 a day runs in and home for lunch. Lost Prospectors the Black Diamond that’s been groomed today. It’s a bit like Jones’s in reverse, gentle meadows to start with then a steep finish – good run,  especially with the new snow on top of all that corduroy.

I’ve had the best part of the day skiing as after lunch a snow storm sets in. We decide to go for a walk / ride down to the Outlet Stores and Walmart. Believe it or not it’s actually quit enjoyable in the snow, but somehow can’t see us doing the same thing back in Belthorn in the rain. Have a good afternoon. Finish up at the bakery for coffee and the usual giant “free” samples.

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Call in at Chase Bank to get a credit card. Don’t really want one but so many of the US sights can’t cope with UK post codes so you can’t order things on your UK credit card. Guy at Chase has a great solution, he assigns our US address to our Chase Debit card and leaves the address for snail mail in the UK. A result. So simple. Really impressed with Chase they’re as good as NatWest – so far.

Are posties in the US specially recruited from a new genetic mutation that produces orangatang long right arms so that they can reach into post boxes without leaving their jeep? Entertaining to watch how they do it.

An interesting approach:

Treat the muslim ideology with caution and candidness.  Treat the Muslim as an individual.  Don’t judge Islam by the Muslims that you know, and don’t judge the Muslims that you know by Islam.

Wednesday – very cold, 10F, blue sky and sunny.

My day seems to be settling into a regular pattern. 04:30 if it’s snowed then snow plough turns up, Armageddon, it sounds as if the Worlds coming to a noisy end. 07:00 alarm may go off, turn over in our super soft bed, under a warm 1 foot thick quilt, courtesy of the supreme sacrifice of their Down from a flock of geese. Question springs to mind “why am I getting up”? Turn over again 10 minutes later and drag myself out, after asking the same question. 07:20 shower, breakfast and a lazy coffee. 08:20 get armoured up with more layers than pigeon shit under a church eaves. 08:25 walk to bus stop. 08:34 on the bus finish gearing up ready for combat and select my music for the day. 09:00 Eagle lift up to top. 09:00 let skiing commence and now I understand why I got up at 07:00. Awesome morning skiing, usually with a good mid-morning coffee and Internet break in front of the fire in the snow hut. At least 10 runs a day and calories burnt, probably about 1,500. Totally bodacious way to spend a day. Better than any Gym and all for $8 a day. After lunch it’s a walk with Wendy just to get some exercise in. 

Now, I don’t want anyone to think I’m obsessive, but the nerd in me has figured out how to write an application that will take any “Powder Alert” email and turn it into a phone call to ensure I’m up in IMG 2280time. Just in case snow plow man or alarm doesn’t work.

Seems like we got 3” of fresh powder yesterday so up on the slopes for 09:00 to make the most of it. Mind you no powder alert as it all arrived before overnight grooming.

Have a great mornings skiing. Get 12 runs in and reach a new land speed record – see tracker. Thankfully there’s no speedo on my skis so you can’t see the speed you’re doing, otherwise I think there’d either be a brown stain or I’d fall over out of sheer fright. With it being so cold the snows lingering on the trees and looks mighty pretty. Sadly it seems that America has it’s fill of scrots who seem to want to shed their bras or knickers whilst on the ski lift – the mind boggles – and throw them on the trees alongside the lift. Ski graffiti in my opinion, spoils the beauty. Let the punishment fit the crime I say and ban them from wearing the offending articles for at least a year.

In the afternoon we take a stroll around the Racquet Club Estate, where we’re living. It overlooks a golf course. I think. All covered in snow. It’s gorgeous, blue skies and fresh snow everywhere. Call in at the Gym, it’s only 5 minutes walk away from home. Every facility you can imagine and just what you need in case you don’t get enough exercise on the mountain. Looks like I can go to free – my sort of word – Yoga classes every Friday in February. And tomorrow afternoon I can go to a free fencing – of the foil, epee and sabre variety – class. How neat is that? 

 

20140122 – Tony cooks a S’mores (more domestic serivitude); Wendy splashes out; how to be a pool guy.

Wednesday – another bluebird day but late afternoon we get to seem the first clouds in 10 days. Then it goes colder that the nipples on witches tit. Flat light on the snow and you don’t see the bumps until they hit you.

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Wendy’s off for her first training sessions a volunteer at the hospital. So it’s a late start all round. 4 hours hard skiing for me, with a break for coffee of course. Then we meet up late afternoon to go coat shopping.

Wendy’s seen this black goose down coat she fancies. I’ve already fell off me perch when I did the first thing any man does and look at the price tag. But she really fancies it so she’s going to try it on unencumbered by 7 layers of ski gear and a liberty bodice. Yes, it fits! Yes, it looks good! We’ve had the “want” and “need” discussion and established there’s a need. She struggles with the price, I’m comatosed. Then it’s a decision. Yes she goes for it out.

Another Netflix evening. Watch the Jack Reacher film and discover we’ve already seen it. An age thing, like the goldfish swimming under the bridge in the bowl and thinking umhh thats a nice bridge, one of the few benefits of age and memory problems. Watched Olympus Has Fallen last night an awesome film, a Die Hard on steroids.

Great news for those of us who avoid vegetables and all this healthy food fad:

Eating “five a day” cuts your risk of cancer

The five-a-day campaign was dreamt up in the fields of California in 1988 and was launched on the back of claims that eating more fruit and vegetables would cut your risk of developing IMG 2182cancer.
This has been studied for over 30 years, but no protective effects have been firmly established.”
That said, eating fruit and vegetables does seem to protect against heart disease and other chronic diseases, and is certainly better than eating junk food.

It’s not just muslims who want to ban freedom of expression:

A comedy show about the Bible, which producers say has been endorsed by hundreds of clergy, has been axed from the Theatre at the Mill in Newtownabbey amid claims it was anti-Christian .The Reduced Shakespeare Company was due to kick off its latest UK tour by presenting The Bible: The Complete Word of God (abridged) at the council-run venue. But earlier this month, calls for the show to be cancelled were made by DUP councillors.

We’re well on the way to loosing any free speech.

Thursday – bluebird day. 

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Wendy’s out early, in her new coat, to go for her 2nd training session. Interesting how many volunteers this profit making hospital consumes. They obviously know a good thing when they see it and utilise the free labour to the maximum. Assumedly by now they’ve found out that Wendy’s not on Blue Crystal Meths despite having watched all of Breaking Bad. 

Two weeks now and not a black bin liner anywhere to be seen. Even rarer than clouds. What a refreshing change. Although I have to say the sight of someone skiing or scum boarding in a black or even blue burkha would be a sight of comic proportions. Similar to the YouTube video of someone eating spaghetti in a burkha.

Late morning and lunch time skiing. Meet Wendy around 14:00 and then it’s off for our Park City Mountain Host volunteer interview. Wendy fancies Plaza meet and greet or Marketing where you go round and do surveys. For me I’m more into the being on the mountain but with us being here late in the season it may not work. They’ll let us know. Let’s hope Wendy gets on as she’ll get a free season pass. Then she’ll be skiing every day!

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In the evening Hal, Carol and of course Angela come round for dinner. That little 4 year old has more imagination than all of Disney combined. Tonight out settee and cushions are no longer a rowing boat to cross the Atlantic in, but has turned into a sleigh. Very pleasant evening, good food, good company and the wine wasn’t too bad. Sadly wine and booze in Mormon country is a tad pricey, that’s if you can find the state liquor stores and find one open – more blue laws in direct violation of the 1st Amendment – I think I’ll complain to that Obama geezer.

A few skier and scum boarder jokes:

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Q: Whats the difference between a snowboarder and a vacuum cleaner?A: One is a noisy scumsucker with a bag of air on it. The other is for cleaning your floor with.
This guy walks into a bar at Mt. Baker and says “Hey, you guys wanna hear a snowboarder joke?”The bartender says, “Well, I’m a snowboarder, the guy on your left is a snowboarder, same with the guy on your right, and a couple of folks behind you as well!”.So he says “Ok, I’ll tell it a little more slowly then”
Q: Why do lifties only get a 1/2 hour lunch break?A: Any longer and they need to be retrained.
Q: What do snowboarders use as birth control.A: Their personalities.
Q: How does a snowboarder introduce themselves?A: “Ohhhh – sorry dude!”

Q. What is the difference between an onion and a snowboard? A. You don’t cry when you cut a snowboard in half!

Friday – another bluebird day.

Lazy start to my day, hit the slopes around 10:00. As I get on the ski bus there’s a family of IMG 2190pretty crazy SFF people. They look at me as if I’m some sort of alien astronaut with all my skis and gear. Than the ultimate, well thought out, ultra intelligent question comes. “Are you going skiing?” It’s oh so tempting to say no I’m going crocodile hunting, but the I suppress my Victor alter ego and answer politely.

Wendy’s staying home deafening the neighbours with the click, click of her needles. I manage 3 hours awesome quiet skiing in – see ski track report. Sneak in 11 awesome runs. These skis are really becoming at one with me and the legs aren’t catching fire as much.

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Then it’s back one for coffee and afterwards we have a pleasant sunny walk into town. It’s funny but down in the town you’re at about 6,700 feet and you sure notice the altitude when walking, feels like lugging a sack of hammers on your back. Yet on the mountain you’re up at 9,500 feet and never feel it the same – thankfully. Meanwhile our bodies must be busier than a cat trying to bury s..t on a marble floor, churning out extra red blood cells. Good news is that alcohol is some much more effective.

Well we’ve been here two weeks now and are really feeling settled in and at home. The stork definitely delivered me to the wrong town. Our home here is so very comfortable, a real home from home. We just love the open plan layout; have more bathrooms than we can use; even have an office; great balconies and deck;kitchen has everything we need; just got to try the jacuzzi out. The bed is that comfortable and has an awesome lightweight goose down continental quilt. You just sink into the bed and are warmer than a pikelet in a toaster. Walking and catching the bus is really no hassle and becomes part of this awesome way of life. Standing waiting for a bus with these awesome surroundings and views is a pleasure. We’re out every day doing some activity and yet at home, this time of year, we just feel caged in and IMG 2208suffer from cabin fever as it’s too dam cold, wet, grey and miserable.

Wendy’s really enjoying her hospital volunteering. And of course I’m really enjoying the skiing and being out and about in those awesome mountains.The really great news is that Wendy’s already talking about finding somewhere for 3 months skiing next year.

Q. What were the snowboarder’s last words? A. DUDE, WATCH THIS!!!

Q. Where does a snowboarder hide his money from his roommates?A. Under the soap dish.

On the first day of her vacation, a woman fell and broke her leg. As the doctor examined her, she moaned, “Why couldn’t this have happened on my last day of skiing?” He looked up. “This IS your last day of skiing.” 

Q. What do snowboarders and a human sperm have in common?A. They both have a one in million chance of becoming a human being.

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A guy finds out he needs a brain transplant. The doctor proceeds to show him various brains. One brain, which belonged to a skier, cost $500, the other, which belonged to a boarder, cost $5000. Perplexed, he asked about the price difference.
The doctor replied “Well, the boarder’s brain has never been used!”

Food for thought:

If Muslims stopped killing other Muslims because they belong to a different sect; stopped forcing their chosen practices on other Muslims; tolerated less pious Muslims;did not feel the need to hang, crucify or stone to death apostates; did not feel enraged if other Muslims did not abstain from alcohol or pork, or did not attend the mosque; did not kill men, women and children because they adhered to other faiths; did not blame rape on the length of a woman’s skirt; did not murder their own wives because they spoke to strangers, or their daughters because they 1622850 10152197113768210 444978736 nflirted with boys or because they were raped by rascals; did not wish to start the World War III because some maverick cartoonist drew blasphemous caricatures; did not use suicide bombers to strike terror into the heart of the unbelievers and then think that these very same jihadist would be rewarded with heaven and 70 virgins; did not issue death fatwas because an author wrote a blasphemous book; or did not aim to spread their religion to the entire world, by the sword if necessary, then fighting Islamophobia would be much easier.

Saturday – yet another gorgeous bluebird day.

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Join Hal and Carol for a mornings skiing. Despite not having had any snow for nearly two weeks it’s still in great shape. Hal manages to put me through my paces, with 2.5 hours none stop action, 3 double blues and even start on a Black Diamonds early. Get the legs on fire. Need to stop being so lazy and put in more turns, these guys put in about 3 times as many turns as I do.

Wowsers, have I cracked it. Forget all your faddy, high priced, boring, eat only veggies, give up living diets Try the TESki diet. It’s simple and great fun. According to my ski tracker a mornings skiing = 1,740 Calories (yes the big C’s). Therefore, by my calculations I can enjoy 3 full bottles of red wine, or 5 bottles of lager, each day, and still be well on my way to a svelte like figure.

Home for lunch and then after lunch we take a walk (I really need the exercise) down to the IMG 2213 anyons to have a look around and look for some new ski pants for me. Sat outside around a roaring log fire in brilliant sunshine drinking coffee. I get the chance to do some cooking, more domestic servitude, as there’s free S’mores on offer. Apparently an all American tradition like pumpkin pie and pot roast. Here’s the recipe, two marshmallows toasted on a skewer, then when they’re melting / black you scrape them off onto chocolate on a Grahams cracker and put a Grahams cracker on top to make a marshmallow and melted chocolate sandwich. Quite tasty and best of all they’re free. Mind you I needed a pint of meths to get the melted marshmallow off me.

Wow we’re really getting into the swing of things as we’ve moved Noddy past Big Ears time to 22:00, although Wendy still manages to nod off even during East Enders – not that surprising as its so dam boring.

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More non PC sayings for everyday use and offence to those open minded liberals and progressives (a liberal gone bad) whose brains seem to have fallen out:

Insane People – Mental Explorers; Selectively Perceptive

Insult – Emotional Rape

Janitor – sanitation engineer

Klutz – kinesthetically challenged

Large Nose – nasally gifted

A court in the Pakistani city of Rawalpindi has sentenced a 70-year-old British man to death after convicting him of blasphemy. Muhammad Asghar was arrested in 2010 after writing letters to various people claiming to be a prophet, reports say. His lawyers argued for leniency, saying IMG 5232he has a history of mental illnessl. Asgharn has been diagnosed as a paranoid schizophrenic and had treatment at the Royal Victoria Hospital in Edinburgh, but the court did not accept his medical reports from the UK, reports say.

Pakistan’s controversial blasphemy laws carry a potential death sentence for anyone deemed to have insulted Islam.

The blasphemy complaint against Asghar was filed by a tenant in his building, after he was given an eviction notice.

His lawyer told the BBC’s Saba Eitizaz that she was forcibly removed from the case by the judge and that proceedings were carried out behind closed doors.

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Foreign aid to this barbaric 3rd world country that also has a nuclear weapons programme and shelters terrorists should be stopped immediately. Yet the clowns in the UK government are planning to double the amount of aid it provides to Pakistan from £267m in 2012-13 to £446m in 2014-15, making it the largest recipient of UK aid. We spent a total of £9.1Billion of foreign aid in 2012. Money we don’t have. The majority going to governments who despise our way of life; have barbaric practices; murder Christians, people of other religions and atheists; reject democracy; have space programmes; nuclear weapons programmes; sponsor terrorism. Obviously our MP’s brains have dropped out. Someone needs to fumigate the houses of parliament to get the smell of stupid out of the furniture in there. I’m just speechless. We should rise up against these idiots.

Sunday – year another gorgeous bluebird day.

Nominate today a lazy day, a day of rest even. Saturdays and Sundays tend to be busier onIMG 2227 the mountain so if we have one day off then these are ideal candidates. Catch the bus into town to seek out some new ski pants. End up buying matching Karbon jacket and pants. I’ve already passed the need test, as my existing gear is just over 9 years old. Even her indoors has two pairs of ski pants for her one day a week debut, whereas my gear has to be washed and dried overnight else I don’t get to ski.

End of Sundance Film Festival today so we say goodbye to all the pretty crazy people and hopefully the Town gets back to normal.

Bloody deer have been again and pinched all the bird food, time for evasive tactics. Test the hot tub for PH and Bromine levels – apparently it dampens the desire for randy activity in the hot tub! Add  a tailored concoction of chemicals, next stop I’ll be a Nobel chemist brewing a batch of blue meth. Then the deck needs a good sweeping as the gutter men have cleaned out the gutters and deposited the residue on the deck – oh the day to day tasks of your average American.

More Liberal taunting Non PC terms:

 

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Lazy – motivationally dispossessed; motivationally deficient

 

Learning Disability – Self-Paced Cognitive Ability

 

Library – Educational Resource Center

 

Logger – Wood Weasel; Paper Pirate;Treeslayer

 

Loser – Second Place; uniquely fortuned individual on an alternative career path

 

Here we go again kicking off and limiting free speech. I wonder who it can be this time:

And all I said to my wife was: That piece of halibut was good enough for Jehovah.

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Maajid Nawaz, a Lib Dem PPC in Hampstead and Kilburn, stands accused of committing the thoroughly heinous crime of causing religiously aggravated butthurt in the first degree, the suggested punishment for which appears to be political career death by change.org petition.

At the heart of this is, yet again, a completely innocuous Jesus & Mo cartoon which Maajid clearly considers to be anything but offensive, hence the tweet.

The webcomic Jesus and Mo is a simple one: the two religious figureheads J Christ and Mohammed share a house and discuss matters of religious philosophy, often in arguments with a wise atheist barmaid at their local.

It is, of course, irreligious and arguably blasphemous. (In its very first edition or episode or whatever you call it, Mo points out that it’s forbidden to depict him pictorially. Jesus asks what he’s doing in a cartoon, reasonably enough, and Mo claims he’s a body double.) It’s also very clever, informed by philosophical and religious argument, and — as mentioned — funny.