A Christmas present for readers, old and new alike

Tree  Happy Christmas  Tree

In lieu of another pair of ill-fitting socks, an overpriced bottle of that perfume you really don’t like or a wholly inappropriate Karma Sutra desk calendar, I offer instead a small wander through the last twelve months of bignoseduglyguy by way of a seasonal gift to each and everyone.


Dear Reader:apologies for the lack of content. I arrived home after a marathon 36 hours of on call activities to the smell of fired PSU and a dead PC. A new power unit is ordered and will hopefully wing its way here a.s.a.p. but until then minimal posts, I’m afraid.


A new year, a new PC, itself replaced shortly after when the sub woofer died.


A social wh-url: SWMBO threw a surprise party for me last night. So what? Well, she also threw a surprise party for me a year ago, her thinking being that, as I was turning 39 then and not 40, I’d never suspect that she would throw a surprise party like I would if it was my 40th. Which she just did and I didn’t so it was a very successful double bluff – or something. Last year, I was tricked because I was told we were off out for a curry at Zeera after a quick drink with friends. This turned out to be a gathering of a few score of friends, colleagues and acquaintances that had been in on the joke. I eventually had that curry one month later.


As well as turning 40, I blogged spousal disagreements, nearly ‘buying the farm’ and weird waiters.


Big Shop Of Horrors:  I have just returned from a DVD rental foray at our local supermarket and I am now more convinced than ever that supermarket entrances are specifically designed to be the human equivalent of fish traps. I am sure these are designed by sadistic sociopathic architects who just scraped a 2nd at uni, shouldn’t be allowed to do anything but window details for ‘executive-style’ Barratt Homes and yet still believe they will be the next Le Corbusier or Richard Rogers.  First of all, the trolley park is about 20 feet from the main doors, which means that folks returning trolleys collide with folks taking trolleys creating a tense, edgy Disney On Ice like vortex from which it is hard to break free.


Retail nightmares aside, my employers gave me a ‘dark side’ phone (above) and I found £20 and bought the kids a Vietnamese meal.


Nostalgic pang of the geek kindIt was on a trip to the aforementioned toilets that I caught a glimpse of a solitary middle-aged chap seemingly slumped in the driving seat of his bland but tax-efficient four door company saloon. Adjusting my course, I moved closer in case he needed help then had second thoughts as I could tell that his hands were busy manipulating something out of sight. By now I was almost upon the car and could hardly bring myself to sneak a sideways glance but when I did, all became clear and I went on my way smiling…


Added to which, not one but two recipes and a piece on irritating phrases.


Hitting the roadAs hinted at in a post or two over the last few weeks, I have recently taken up running again – seriously, this time. I say running to accentuate the difference between what I am trying to do now and activities like jogging, wheezing, staggering and sweating, all of which I have periodically indulged in individually and collectively over the years. The cynics around me (and out there, no doubt) maintain that this is all part of a mid-life crisis that, having reached forty this year, I am now desperately trying to reclaim my youth and virility like a pale imitation of Lester Burnham.


Plus the first version of my ‘Getting Things Done with email’ article (above).


My Euro 2004 pundit: …my Euro 2004 pundit’s latest comment: “I will take this opportunity to say that Sven needs his bumps felt. He’s talking about starting with the same line-up for the match against Croatia. How many times do I have to say that Michael Owen couldn’t hit a cow’s arse with a banjo.”


bignoseduglyguy moves back to Blogger, ‘milkies’ are commented upon and nationalism and flag waving are blogged.


Not the Tour de France: There were red faces at the offices of Cycling Plus magazine following a typo error in the May edition in an article outlining a cycle route: “There is the option to dismount, wank along the pavement and cross the main road at a safe point.” Cycling Plus claim the fault occurred at the printers and not with them.


Elsewhere, I bought a new phone which, when used as a modem, enabled me to post ‘Cornish Pastiche’, a four part holiday article from my Palm Tungsten T3 (plus two others in August), as an homage to Maconi’s pioneering work (at The Lizard, above).


Back to earth – with a bump: Upon arriving home, we were greeted by a pile of post [..] which [..] included not only the usual junk mail and detritus but also:

1. A credit card bill.
2. A London Congestion Charge Penalty fine.
3. A second London Congestion Charge Penalty fine.
4. Yet a third London Congestion Charge Penalty fine.
5. A Conditional Offer of Fixed Penalty speed camera fine.
6. A letter from my employers concerning increased health care benefit costs.


I craved full fat US-style bar snacks, went to market (above), and waxed lyrical about running (whilst Kelly Holmes did the old onetwo).


Cherish what is important to you: In some way, the barely comprehensible enormity of the tragedy that has descended upon the community of Beslan in North Ossetia has served as a cathartic coda to what has been a difficult week. At the start of the week, I learned that my good friend and colleague Bert (below) is desperately and, it would seem, terminally ill.


A month of extremes – the death of a friend tempering the fun of meeting Shamshul’s friend, Mr Naga, getting to grips with an iPod & iTunes and joining Andy spitting in the eye of InterBrew


Home Truths & John Peel: “Before we start, I need to talk to you about David Essex and breasts…”  So began one of the many editions of Home Truths I have enjoyed over the last six or so years. Of all the mornings to sleep in and miss the show, today with it’s tribute to John Peel, was not the day to pick.


The much lamented passing of John Peel (above) was accompanied by the joy of a new toy, the frustration of a dead iPod and Hello Ian fun.


Dublin: “The public museums are closed on a Monday. All of Dublin’s museums are public. Except for the private ones. Which are often open on Mondays”…”On the left, you will see the main entrance of Dublin’s Trinity College, which was established under the patronage of Queen Elizabeth the Second. No, that’s not right, it wasn’t; it was Queen Elizabeth the First. Ah well, no matter, they were both from the same family.”…”Would those who have just boarded please stop talking? I am the only one who should be talking – otherwise, others cannot hear me!”


A short but expensive trip to Dublin preceded endless posts leading up to this piecethis piece and this piece of self-congratulation (above) – though I did raise a few quid for a good cause at the same time.


Whilst December has been lean in terms of posts, I would ask all who have read this far to go back to the 5th and take up my challenge to tax yourself so that others less fortunate might benefit from our good fortune during this festive season.  If you do not have a preferred charity or cause, click through to Charity Choice where you can search or browse for a recipient to suit your preference.

That said, I hope that the holidays are peaceful, restful and a happy time for all who click through here.

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