Thursday, 30 April 2009

Honesty Day

I have been asking for questions for honesty day... here are my answers:

Who was the first person (I assume guy) that you fancied?
When I was about 10, I was strangely fascinated by a character called Jonah on a TV programme called Grange Hill - I knew that was not usual for boys. The first proper crush was on a guy called Mark at school around age 13. I wonder what happened to him?

What is the dullest thing you have done lately?
Pete and I have been gardening a lot lately!

Have you ever stolen anything?
I am ashamed to say that I once stole a glass from a pub. I still have it!

How did you meet your boyfriend?
We worked at the same company (10 years ago this year). He couldn't resist me!

Is masturbation a sin?
No. Readily available, safe and fun!

Do you enjoy your job?
Not much - it's dull but quite easy.

You meet yourself in an alternate universe, would you have sex with yourself?
LOL. Probably! But is having sex with myself cheating?

How old are you and how old you you feel?
Clever question. I am just 39 and I feel 26.

What is the best bit of advice you have ever received?
If you try your hardest and fail, then you are a failure.

Is there a god?
I am not convinced, but as this could cause many people to become upset, I will just say that I find organised religion to be a strange pastime.

Shave, wax or au natural?
I shave my face every other day - it's the only place hair grows well. If you are asking about more personal areas, I have never waxed "down there" but have trimmed!

Do you have a favorite porn star?
The old fave is Johan Paulik, but Brent Corrigan is rather nice too!

If you could give one bit of advice to someone just starting this road we call life, what would it be?
That's a big question... I think that we all need to be honest with ourselves. Look at yourself from other individuals points of view all the time.

I would like to know if you have ever had a girlfriend?
I had a girlfriend when I was 17 - her name was Marinda and she was Dutch. She was a lovely person, but I knew I was gay and although we had some fun, the relationship was always doomed as I fancied her brother far more.

Tuesday, 28 April 2009

Today Stephen is...

Avoiding cliches like the plague.

Monday, 27 April 2009

Ale have a beer please

I mentioned a few days ago that Pete and I had made some nettle ale. The other night, one of the three bottles exploded making a glass/yeast/liquid mess. And on Saturday, we decided to try our well fermented ale...

The bottles had been sitting on the garage floor for a few weeks, so knowing the ale was very fizzy, I didn't move the bottle at all when I opened it. As I flicked the top of the bottle open (it had a top like Grolsch bottle), the rather potent mixture errupted like a volcany spraying about a metre and a half into the air for a good 5 seconds. There was very little left in the bottle - it tasted awful and wasn't drinkable!

Where did we go wrong?!

Saturday, 25 April 2009

Around Midnight

Every now and again I enter the Guardian 'In Pictures' competition that runs every Saturday. I have come second twice... that first place slot with the camera as a prize has yet to be mine!

This week, I don't know if I appeared in the newspaper, but I got a mention on the website HERE, due to this photograph I sent in for the topic of 'Around Midnight'.

Wednesday, 22 April 2009

Help! I need somebody

The second of my two exams is over. Thank god! This one was 3 hours of mind jangling stuff. The result comes in 2 months, but I suspect I am just short of a pass... too many guesses on the day. I'm off to London for a team meeting tomorrow and my boss wants me to promote taking exams to the rest of the team. My best acting skills will be used.

The sun is shining in England and in fact, it's a really lovely day, despite the Chancellor presenting his credit crunch tax 'em high budget. Tonight Pete and I will be sitting in the garden eating my home made curry and enjoying a beer/wine (yet to be decided).

And we have Waltz with Bashir on DVD to watch.

On the 30th April, it's "honesty day" - so I thought I would produce a blog entry on or near the day to honestly answer anything you have to ask! Anything!!! So, drop me an email at the address shown on the right or leave a comment.

Tuesday, 21 April 2009

What no posts!?

The lack of posts has been due to me concentrating on examinations. Yeah right!!! Let me rephrase that... The lack of posts should probably have been due to me concentrating on examinations. I hate revising!

One exam done and another tomorrow. The first was awful - the examining board is renowned for picking tiny parts of the syllabus and making them into huge, irrelevant questions. Also, they have a knack for making the question as confusing as possible. Anyway... three hours tomorrow and I am done for a while.

I saw this just now and it made me laugh...

A judge in Stuttgart, Germany, is currently trying to decide on a lawsuit in which a man hired his neighbour to impregnate his wife.

Demetrius Soupolos, 29, and his former beauty queen wife, Traute, were very keen to have a child together, but Demetrius was sterile so they began to seek out other possible options. The option the couple eventually decided on was to hire their neighbour Frank Maus, 34, to impregnate Traute.

Maus, who was already married with two children agreed to do the job for the fee of €2,000. For three evenings a week for the next six months, a total of 72 different times, Maus tried to impregnate Traute.

When his own wife objected, Maus explained that he was "only doing it for the money."

After the unsuccessful six-month period Soupolos insisted that Maus take a medical examination. The doctor concluded that Maus was also sterile, which forced his wife into admitting that their two children did not belong to him.

Soupolos is now suing Maus in an effort to get his money back. Maus' argument is that he did not guarantee conception, only that he would try his hardest.

Saturday, 18 April 2009

Big with the gays

I had forgotten all about this audio clip until the other day! Pete sent a text in to a radio show...

Thursday, 16 April 2009

Miscellaneous photographs #1

I have decided to introduce this new photo feature, where I trawl through my photographs and pick out a few unusual ones for your enjoyment...

1. Lloyds of London
2. Pete through the peephole

3. Warning sign
4. Fly #1 (Macro shot)

Tuesday, 14 April 2009

The weekend and Mama's spicy potato recipe

Pete and I had a quiet long weekend. We both have exams next week, so did a little studying and plenty of moaning about how boring studying is.

I noted a couple of stories worth sharing:

- Is Amazon homophobic or did they just make an error?
- Tate art made available on iTunes - bring some culture to the masses!
- And this is genius... Cardboard Oven Wins £50,000 Green Contest

We took Pete's Godparents out for Sunday lunch and picked a load of young nettles later in the afternoon. We have gone all rural and are making nettle ale, as seen on Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall 's TV programme. Watch this space to hear how great (or otherwise) it turns out!

Talking of making things to consume, when I published the first part of "100 facts about me" back in November last year, I included the following statement:

-I believe that my mum’s spicy potatoes are a near perfect recipe.

I received several emails on this topic asking for more information (including one from Marco who has had the recipe for a while) and I have, at last, convinced my mother to pass on the secret recipe. Please cook, enjoy and appreciate how lucky you are!

Mama's Spicy Potatoes

2lb firm potatoes cooked in salted water
2tsp mustard seeds
2tsp turmeric powder
2tsp cumin powder
1 finely chopped chilli
2tbsp finely chopped coriander
3tbsp oil for cooking

Put all ingredients in large pan or wok and cook for a minute than add the potatoes and turn gently until all evenly covered with the spices. Enjoy them hot or cold. You can also add some parsley and coriander powder - but try the recipe as it is first.

Sunday, 12 April 2009

My favourite quotes/sayings/lines

"A poem is never finished, only abandoned."
Paul Valery

"I'm not offended by dumb blonde jokes because I know that I'm not dumb. I also know I'm not blonde."
Dolly Parton

"You all want it now. You think you deserve it just because you want it? It doesn't work like that. You have to earn it."
(from Swimming With Sharks)

"The harder I practice, the luckier I get"
Gary Player

"Here's to alcohol, the cause of and solution to all life's problems"
Homer Simpson

"Oh, what a tangled web we weave, when first we practice to deceive"
Sir Walter Scott

"All right, but apart from the sanitation, medicine, education, wine, public order, irrigation, roads, the fresh water system and public health, what have the Romans ever done for us?"
(from Monty Pythons Life Of Brian)

"I don't want to achieve immortality through my work... I want to achieve it through not dying."
Woody Allen

[Talking about boxers...]
Frank Drebin: Hector Savage. From Detroit. Ex-boxer. His real name was Joey Chicago.
Ed Hocken: Oh, yeah. He fought under the name of Kid Minneapolis.
Nordberg: I saw Kid Minneapolis fight once. In Cincinnati.
Frank Drebin: No you're thinking of Kid New York. He fought out of Philly.
Ed Hocken: He was killed in the ring in Houston. By Tex Colorado. You know, the Arizona Assassin.
Nordberg: Yeah, from Dakota. I don't remember it was North or South.
Frank Drebin: North. South Dakota was his brother. From West Virginia.
Ed Hocken: You sure know your boxing.
Frank Drebin: All I know is never bet on the white guy.
(From Naked Gun 2 and a half)

Saturday, 11 April 2009

I asked, I was answered

Following on from the blog post I sent before my holiday asking a few open questions, some answers have appeared all by themselves:

Will a four piece Barenaked Ladies work?

Well the band has played a show and the reviews were "OK". But, for the first time in history, they didn't play Brian Wilson! A huge loss to the set I think.

Will the Beatles ever release remastered tracks online?

The answer was better than just digital tracks - we are getting completely remastered and repackaged CD's! The CD sound on the first few albums was mushy, so new stereo mixes using the latest technology is welcome.

This was a quick posting as I should be studying for 2 forthcoming exams - both investment related.

And for the record, I have a tooth ache and last night was ****ing painful. I hate the dentist, but I will have to book an appointment!

Thursday, 9 April 2009

Three days of rain

Although the garden needs some rain, the heading refers to the play Pete and I saw last night. We were both in London for work so we used the opportunity to go out for some entertainment.

Three days of rain was good, but I am not sure I truly enjoy the theatre experience any more: crammed into uncomfortable seats, having to scowl at noisy people, no aircon, straining to see the stage as the seats are so expensive we are miles from it, etc.

However, the play was well presented and featured James McAvoy who I rather like and Nigel Harman who Pete has always fancied - so neither of us can really complain! Though Pete did lose his work mobile at the end of the night, so if you are at the Apollo in London today and happen to see a Blackberry, you know who to contact!

Your help please... On the 30th April, it's "honesty day" - so I thought I would produce a blog entry on or near the day to honestly answer anything you have to ask! Anything!!! So, drop me an email at the address shown on the right or leave a comment.

Tuesday, 7 April 2009

This blog is pants!

Following on from my last post, in which I happened to mention boxer-briefs. I received a strange email that I directed straight into the spam folder. No Sir, I am not interested in that particular purchase.

Anyway, despite the danger of dragging this blog into the gutter, I'll continue the underwear theme for one post: here are a couple of great pictures showing the sexy English footballer (David Bentley) and the gay-friendly English Rugby player (Ben Cohen).

I have carried out extensive research and found that 66.67% of all pictures containing the stunning Dino Gamecho, Mr Gay UK 2008, show him in underwear. This Welshman is a real cutey and I although obviously I don't have the looks, what would I have given to have had his confidence and self-belief when I was 20. I don't even have it at 38!

Sunday, 5 April 2009

100 facts about me - 41 to 50

Here is the next part of the "100 facts about me" list - previous entries can be found here:

41. The biggest cheque I ever signed was at work for £500,000.
42. The only sport I can say I am any good at is skiing.
43. I have to switch the TV off when Ricky Gervais comes on the screen.
44. I have found that H&M boxer-briefs (trunks) are the best pants I have ever worn.
45. I can’t wear 'normal' boxers.
46. I want to learn to play the Ukulele (I now own one), the banjo and other stringed instruments.
47. I think that Frasier is one of the best comedies on TV, despite being American!
48. I share the same birthday with Barbra Streisand and my late Grandmother.
49. I submit a post to the Crystal Palace Bulletin Board (the most popular football fan site in the UK) maybe once a week.
50. In my first game of poker with real money, I wiped out my brothers and their friends too and wasn’t invited back again. I was 14 at the time.

Thursday, 2 April 2009

People Watching

In the ski chalet in Morzine, there were 18 of us - in 3 distinct groups:

1. My brother, me and his two sons. We sat at one end of the long dining table, partly to keep the kids away from everyone else I think. We tried to consider our fellow holiday goers, especially as we knew we'd paid half as much as them!

2. The other group of 8 guys was labelled the "drunk ones" by my nephew. They were 30something lads who felt it was important to shout at each other all of the time. They managed to miss most meals as they were drunk in a bar somewhere and rarely went out skiing in the morning due to hangovers.

One night they came home at 4am and slammed doors and shouted for an hour and a half. As a bad sleeper and someone who has experienced bad neighbours, I really needed that. It's a bit sad to see grown men acting like children and does remind me of a posting I did on kidults. Their aim in life appears to be getting as drunk as possible and paying no regard to anyone around them.

3. The final group was from Essex - three guys and three girls in their late 20's who were quite well spoken (two couples within the group). They were witty and polite but a couple of things made me question how genuine they might really be. They were snowboarders and there does seem to be a silly divide between skiers and boarders - we all strap wood to our feet and let gravity slide us down snowy slopes.

The leader of the group had a normal name but decided to be called by his "boarder name". I think he made it up himself to appear "cool" - but it didn't work, it just came across as someone who was trying a bit too hard to be cool. This group of everyday Essex folk also used "boarder speak" whenever they talked about the sport - people became "dudes" and they spoke about rails, pipes, air dogs, eggbeaters and ollies. It all came across as very false as they reverted to Essex type when speaking about any other topic.

One very weird thing that happened is that we were talking about Family Guy and one of the girlfriends said of her boyfriend sitting next to her, "I don't let him watch Family Guy". She was not being witty, she really meant it - she actually controlled his viewing habits and he accepted it! How sad is that!? What else does she control in their relationship? You can imagine the sex - "no do it this way, you may touch this, no you cant do that there, you may finish now".

A couple of comments wound me up. They were talking about a poor reality TV programme called Dancing On Ice (I have never seen it) and one of the guys just said in passing "that gay boy Ray Quinn will probably win it". The throw away line of "gay boy" really annoyed me - especially as there was no hint of humour in his voice and it was clearly part of his vocabulary as an insult. Kids will get the impression that it's OK to use the word "gay" as an insult when it clearly is not. Later in the week, at dinner they were discussing stars and decided that George Clooney was clearly a "gayer" and one of the girls went on about this as if he was evil. As being gay becomes more accepted, maybe they feel threatened in some way? I don't understand at all.

To end, here's a slightly poor picture of a guy who managed to get in the corner of a picture I took of a ski slope... nice French totty!

Wednesday, 1 April 2009

The spaghetti tree

A side posting in honour of todays date...

In the 1950's, Britain was not the cosmopolitan country it is today and in 1957 the BBC decided to use the nations naivety to play an April Fools day prank. It has since become revered as a true classic British TV moment.

The serious current affairs TV programme Panorama had a 3 minute story on a bumper spaghetti harvest in Switzerland, resulting from the mild winter and "virtual disappearance of the spaghetti weevil." The report showing spaghetti growing on trees was given additional creditability by using respected broadcaster Richard Dimbleby for the voice over. Pasta was not an everyday food in 1950s Britain, and was considered by many to be a delicacy!

Panorama cameraman Charles de Jaeger dreamed up the report after remembering how teachers at his school in Austria used to tease his classmates for being so stupid that they would believe it if they were told spaghetti grew on trees.

An estimated 8 million people watched the programme on April 1st, and hundreds phoned in the following day to question the authenticity of the story, or ask for more information about spaghetti cultivation and how they could grow their own spaghetti trees. The BBC reportedly told them to "place a sprig of spaghetti in a tin of tomato sauce and hope for the best"!

Happy April fools day. If you were "got" today, I hope it was a good one.