Saturday, September 26, 2009

James, Grandad and the Jedi take over the house once and for all.....

hi everyone

well, with Mummy off out for the day, James decided that it would be a jolly good idea to have Grandma and Grandad come over. the really jolly part of this good idea was that, with Mummy out of the way, James could guide and assist Grandad in banging several nails into the wall!

whilst away on holiday Grandad spotted some very excellent looking Star Wars posters. after having them mounted on some board, over he was to change from 'Admiral Bob' to 'Bob The Builder' and put them up for us. well, it's rather well documented that i am not allowed to go near walls with nails anymore.

as you can see, James decided to help by using various Force powers, as well as his lightsaber. phew! i am not at all sure that Grandad could have managed with just his hilti device thingie, a hammer and several years of expert skill and experience!

i am sure that Grandad found the occasional bat in the nose off the lightsaber most helpful!

i believe i did use the plural, as there are indeed posters - 3 of them are now up in our house, making it heaven for James. well, as in every corner of the building you look you can see something belonging to James, i trust that it was that already!

the posters are indeed very smart, and i quite like having them up in the house! the next two are rather brilliantly painted / drawn ones - certainly a labour of love from someone!

whereas James loves all the posters equally (with the one in the lounge of all the Jedi being a bit more equal than others), i really like the one that has ended up in his bedroom. there is not, alas, a clear picture of it in this update, but i will see what i can do!

i think it's safe to say that James is very impressed indeed with having this in his room!

ahem. i will probably get away with the Star Wars posters being where they are. wish me luck with keeping this one that Dad brought back for me!

well, i like it, and thus it is staying!!

now, the eagle eyed of you will have noticed a baby scan picture on James' wall! now that i think on, we went for a scan earlier this week. no picture, sorry, but we took James along. he was a bit nervous about what the nice doctor was doing to Mummy's tummy at the start of the scan, but once he saw baby waving at him he was thrilled!

thanks for the hard work, Grandad! sorry, 24 hour plumbers, i didn't touch a single nail! after all, a fool thinks himself to be wise, but a wise man knows himself to be a fool.

be excellent to each other!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Thursday, September 24, 2009

quality journalism

hey everyone

when Mum & Dad were getting ready to head over to the UK, they asked if there was anything they could bring back with them. i in jest suggested they bring back one of England's finest periodicals, the Sunday Sport newspaper. imagine my surprise when they did indeed proudly hand over a recent edition of this, and i use the word with some hesitation, newspaper.

as it turns out, the edition they brought back does feature a rather interesting article, the kind of which one doesn't normally see written in quite as bleak and uncompromising terms as this paper chose to go with. as amusing as i found the article, in particular the warning quotes, i wasn't going to put this up here. it's a little over the line i have drawn to keep this site suitable for all. however, Michele seemed disappointed when i mentioned i wasn't going to put it here, and indeed my mate Spiros has a great interest in stories like this. for the record, i have a vague idea as to who this Jack Tweed is, although i certainly have no wish to learn much about him. i would also go as far a saying i am not quite as taken by him as this Mr Lomax gentleman is.

below is the article, and i must stress a big *** WARNING *** here, as the text is far from suitable for all to read.....

now, as excited as my mate Spiros will have been about the above, i must confess i have done some research into this tale. i can find no evidence of a Mr Al Lomax having his own site as indicated above; indeed the only Al Lomax i could find looks rather ethnically different and certainly doesn't strike me as the sort of chap that would impose himself on other in any way, let alone the manner told above. as for the 'journalist', Mr James Crisp, the only record i can find of him is in relation to some story or other that greatly upset the fine people of Whitby.

i can't really suggest that i hope you have enjoyed this post; if you have been amused by it, so much the better.

be excellent to each other!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Frankie Say.........curves!

hey everyone

the "return" of Frankie Goes To Hollywood (at least as far as the record stores) continues it seems. many thanks to the chaps on the Frankie forum who found these pictures!

at a guess, it has more to do with the "25 years of British fashion" celebrations, but a nice touch to get Frankie and the logo in - clearly a tie in or condition from their label, ZTT.

hurrah, a Frankie post that my Dad and brother will appreciate, not to mention Barrie!

keep giving it loads in that direction................

Sunday, September 20, 2009

there's a party going on in (non-atomic) New Zealand city.....

hey everyone

well, yes, i appreciate that New Zealand isn't a city as such, but that song quote line, as has been the case with a few across the blog, serve as clues to those who wish to work out the name James has decided on for his close to due brother.

in the mean time, a month without a picture of all the grandchildren of self-style 'Admiral Bob' is a pretty poor month for this site, so how excellent that Gillian and Grant forwarded on some pics of Katie and Daniel from a most splendid 3rd birthday party!

first off, here's Daniel. he's looking more handsome than ever, and clearly is anticipating the food element of the party!

Daniel, i am led to believe, quite likes his food. he will get this from his Dad, no doubt - presumably, then, the top dish for the both of them is "lamb surprise", although i won't go into detail on Grant's interpretation. now that i think of it, James is thus far the only one of the "next generation" (although none of the kids are called Picard. or Wharf.) who sees having to stop and eat as a considerable inconvenience. go figure.

never too far away from the side of her brother is Katie, who seems to be having a sensational time in the ball pit of the party place. as far as i recall from Gillian's mail the party was in a place called "Dominoes". it could, however, be named after another parlour game. or be something beginning with a "d".

nice one Katie, i wonder who you are smiling at - presumably the intended target when you get around to throwing them!

well, that's a rather pleasant update to round off a huge stack of family updates! i think i will watch a film, read a book (many thanks for volume 2 of Clarkson, Auntie Susan!) or something to give a review of next!

be excellent to each other!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Saturday, September 19, 2009

more from the UK....

hey everyone

well, somewhat amazingly after the Hello Sailors update, my Dad (or "Admiral Bob" as he seems to have taken quite a shine to the title) has forwarded a "few" more pictures that he forgot about.

before we start, however, my Dad would like to make it clear that he is not familiar with the ways and what have you of gentlemen who are good with colours and puddle jumpers, so any images (or actions with men who live in boats with other men) are entirely innocent. he did also mention in passing that he wasn't of a mind to send any further pictures of him on boats.

onwards, then, to a fine pic of my Dad having a fine meal. it looks very much like it could be sausage and beans, but as he's seen RocknRolla and might remember that line i won't highlight it or suggest anything else.

moving on rather nicely, here's a wonderful pic of Grandma and Gramps!

good to see them healthy and happy! in the case of the latter, this was then presumably taken before Gramps read the daily paper, when no doubt some MP innocently claiming having the moat around his duck house as a Parliamentary expense will have caused him some upset!

onwards to Christopher. as previously mentioned, my Dad had taken a shine to the idea of educating Andrew and Christopher in some of his habits, mostly those related to something called a swinging trifectabluating spread wager. Christopher, however, clearly took on board my Dad's two new loves (meeting men in interesting attire who possibly live on boats and wrestling other men to the ground) and applied them in a rather different, non-puddle jumping, "it's blue, what shades are there but light and dark?" manner.

nice one Chris, sounds and seems that you are doing rather well with it!

now then, as you will recall, Uncle Colin was involved in some wrestling too - he was wrestling with the concept of having his every move photographed for the duration of the stay of the newly anointed Admiral of the Canals. in the end it would seem that he came up with an ace solution to this circumstance......

he even went one better, as his wave goodbye would suggest that he also fancies a crack at giving a review to the behaviour of one Liam Gallagher of late - Noel, hope you're reading.

well, these could be the last of the pics from their trip to England. it's difficult to tell, really. if there are more, it won't be the first instance of my Dad "forgetting" a few thousand pics he took, and i dare say it shall not be the last.

be excellent to each other!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Darth James

hey everyone

James went to see Grandma and Grandad today, and we bravely went out shopping. and i do mean this was brave, as the first point of call was a toy shop!

believe it or not, James didn't particularly want this excellent new outfit whilst we were in the store itself; Grandma and i suspected that he may well have a change of mind after the fact. we thus bought it for him anyway.

and just as well that we did, as he has grown rather attached to it very quickly!

i had no idea that Darth Vader was also a keen fan of Ice Age, going on the t-shirt! that said, i think he might have to become on - James tells us that as far as he is concerned the next film will be called Ice Age 4 - Dawn Of The Star Wars. get working, Mr Lucas, get working!

now, when i say that James has grown rather attached to this new outfit, this does indeed mean that i drove all the way home with the Dark Lord Of The Sith in full costume in the back of the car!

once at home he was able to, to coin a phrase, complete the circle and wield his mighty (in inflatable terms) lightsaber around!

i know what the question is as much as you know what the answer is - indeed, yes, i have put the mask on, and in my best deep, machine breathing voice i have said "James, I am your father".....

be excellent to each other!!!! or rather, may the force be with you.............

Friday, September 18, 2009

visiting the Harlo gang......

hey everyone

well, whenever any of us head to the UK, the motto is certainly "think hospitality - think Harland", as Colin, Angela, Christopher and Andrew are astounding and outstanding in welcoming us and making sure we're looked after and have a good time.

here's Colin and Angela, looking as healthy and happy as ever!

now, it was with nothing but pride that Dad told me how he had been teaching young Andrew and Christopher the wiles and the ways of one of his top hobbies. thankfully it was not aquatic or wrestling related, but alas it was not related to reading, pond building or gardening either. it was the hobby that is, shall we say, more equestrian than that.

just look at the appearance of pride on Colin's face as his eldest son Andrew informs him that, on the basis of information solicited from his Uncle Bob, he has just placed a significant wager on an excellent swinging, trifectorating double whammy boom boom tip with a turf accountant in regards of a race which is soon to commence. in Trinidad.

i can only imagine it was a success, as here's Colin Elvis Cliff Harry Webb himself posing with the wisely investing lads, Andrew William and Christopher James.....

now, it has to be said, the fine people of the North East of England are not quite as used to having everything single thing they do documented with a camera as those of us who see my Dad frequently are. with no degree of certainty can i comment on exactly why my Dad would wish to record the moment his brother-in-law put a seatbelt on and, going on Colin's reaction, neither could Colin.

my Dad is, however, exceptionally comfortable on both sides of the camera (just refer to the Hello Sailors!!! pictures, unless by the time you read this he has made me delete them. oh hang on - sorry Dad, honest, you just can't delete anything off the internet). here he is to illustrate this point, showing off one of the most excellent t-shirts in the history of all t-shirts!

righty-ho, i think that will do for pictures of their great adventures!!

be excellent to each other!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

hello sailors!!!

hey everyone

well, on the one side, if i were to put certain pictures (and comments) up here i face the prospect of being disowned, bringing much glee to Richard and Gillian who will no doubt delight at the prospect of being named the two sole beneficiaries of our fathers' estate (although i think Marmite gets it all anyway). on the other side, however, he did willingly mail these pictures to me, he does get a touch disappointed when he doesn't feature and they are priceless.

so, ladies and gentlemen, to that end i give you Admiral Bob of the Canals!

going on the many pictures of him in the Admiral hat i guess he took quite a shine to it! here he is, posing away, oblivious to any possible connotations he's giving off with the outfit and the pose.

and when i say "oblivious", i do mean that many years ago when the sad news of the death of Freddie Mercury broke Richard and i did have to sit him down and explain very slowly what exactly "the Freddie Mercury lifestyle" was. he was having none of it, of course, and presumably to this day considers that his band was named in honour of distinctly more Royal related things......

....leaving that aside, here's Dad as the day disappears to dusk, stood happily, and with a sense of pride, showing an absolutely massive pole off....

going on legends and myths of how men of the seas entertain themselves, i am not quite sure i would stand in such close proximity to a sign saying "open" with a massive arrow pointing the way it is in that pic, but i've never really had that much of a sense of adventure, i suppose.

as far as entertaining on the water goes, and in regards of the Admiral hat, it certainly seems to have worked as a "come and admire me" hat at least, as this gentleman of the waterways clearly took a shine to him.

now, as far as my Mum could work out, this free-spirited, open-minded gentleman of an undetermined but possibly ambiguous lifestyle lives something of a roaming around lifestyle. with another gent of the waterways.

the connotations of this are of such a nature that even my Dad my have noticed something was amiss, and thus he appears to have retired his Admiral of the Canals ambitions. in its place, however, he appears to have opted for a life of wrestling other men to the ground........

there is the outside (or rather very good) chance that my Dad will consider it unwise to send pictures of this nature to me again (much like Grant doesn't really send as many images of him with sheep anymore), so enjoy these ones for all they are worth!!!!!!!

be excellent to each other!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

need a new lead singer, Noel? look no more.....

hey everyone

the recent departure of Noel Gallagher from Oasis has taken up enough newspaper space as it is. once they clock that they are not as talented as certain other groups were to go their own ways and still be a success they will get back together. in the mean time, as good as his voice is, Noel might just be looking for a new singer.

if he's in the market for one, look no further, as my Mum seems to foot the bill. as far as one can ascertain from a strictly visual history of Noel's choice of singer, the number one requirement would be to make an offensive hand gesture any time a camera is pointed at them. Mum seems to be getting a spot of practice in for just this important task....

it's not quite as simple as just making hand gestures, though, is it? every now and then one has to wear a pair of excellent rock and roll style shades as they do it. yep, Mum's got that covered too!

Fred also seems more than competent to take over the front man job, doubly so as he's making an offensive hand gesture and giving a profound comment on what the boys, mostly Liam granted, are behaving like a bunch of at present.

be excellent to each other!!!!!!!!!!!!! and remember, if wave at cameras and play guitars instead of smashing them, the world is a better place......


hey everyone

well, Mum & Dad have as mentioned in the last post been away. for a change, my Dad took several thousand photographs of the trip, so here we go with some of the best of them!

the bulk of their time away was spent on a rather pleasant looking canal boat (barge?) cruise. an extra bonus would be that (my) Grandma and Gramps went with them!

the boat (thingie) that they went on was called the Prince Hal. erm, yeah. not quite sure that i would get on anything called "Hal", in particular after the year 2001 and the film 2001!

now, some of you (my Dad in particular) might be wondering why i have not commented on my Dad's stance and attire in the above picture. patience, dear reader - your humble narrator promises a possibly disowning post rather soon.....

Grandma and Gramps certainly seemed to have had an ace time riding the canals!

well, Gran did - i think after a few days of mastering locks, keys and all those things, Gramps clocked that inside was a perfect place to sit and have a nice quiet read of the paper.

i am assuming, since i did not get any calls (let alone a banging on the door) asking about how much of his tax it was going to cost him, Gramps did not note any stories about the erstwhile Duchess Sarah Ferguson.....

as much of a bonus of Gran and Gramps coming along was that our dear friend Fred was along for the ride! happily, it seems that (as far as photographic evidence reveals) he scored the double whammy of keeping his pants on and didn't pull any whoppers out (of the water) to wave about a bit with a proud smile.

now, in that above picture they all look rather happy. i imagine it's mostly to do with them having a good time, but there's a partial possibility that Dad is stood taking pictures on top of the boat / barge / aquatic transportation device as they are approaching a bridge......

....and speaking of bridges, despite already taking several thousand pictures, i am delighted to reveal that Dad still found space on the memory stick to take an image of the legendary, if not infamous, bridge known as "Bridge 36".

wow, pretty awe-inspiring in general and highly motivational, is it not? i can understand you stopping and just staring at Bridge 36 in all its majestic glory, but if you move on to the next picture, you can happily make your own "what's long and hard and filled with (ahem)" jokes, except of course substituting whatever the proper name is for a canal barge instead of the usual answer. which should be "submarine", or possibly a slang term of anatomical reference which my mate Spiros is rather a dab hand at drawing....

looking at the expression on their faces, i would imagine someone has just told the more conventional version of that joke!

more pictures heading your way imminently!

be excellent to each other!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Redcar in September

hey everyone

James' Grandma and Grandad (the artists formerly known as my Mum & Dad i guess) have returned from what sounds like a busy but fun holiday in the UK.

fans of images of my Dad in his pyjamas bothering kitchens before 6 in the morning are in for something of a disappointment - it seems, alas, that all and sundry decided to just let him get on with it and not bother taking any pictures this time.

Mum and Dad did, however, pay a visit to the proprietors of some of the finest turf accountants Redcar has to offer. and look who they bumped in to!

the rate at which my Mum "happens" to bump into former England captains is rather remarkable!

my Dad has promised somewhere in the region of 2000 (two thousand) images of a canal stream. i dare say one or two of the more selective appeal pictures shall feature here, along with the obligatory "hello sailors! comments!

be excellent to each other!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Monday, September 14, 2009

Bad Lieutenant remake

hey everyone

well, let's face it. movie remakes are a fact of life. no matter how many complain about them they keep getting made. i don't recall any remake ever being heralded as being superior to the original, but somewhere along the line they must make enough cash to inspire others to go off and remake.

remakes of hit films or fondly remembered films that weren't big hits at the time do tend to make some degree of sense. exactly which category the rather demented film Bad Lieutenant fits into, however, is beyond me.

i'm not sure how much of a remake this is, it sounds like a "reimaginging" of it, placing Nicolas Cage in the tour de force role which Harvey Keitel took in the original.

anyway, i shall reserve some degree of judgement on this one. in the mean time, here's a rejected poster for the new version....

and, just for fun, here's the poster for the original masterpiece.

the original film was deeply unpleasant viewing, made bearable only by the superb performance from Keitel. how toned down this new version is remains to be seen. Cage can be "edgy" in films, but i suspect not quite as "edgy" as the original.

be excellent to each other!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Sunday, September 13, 2009

weekend fun

hey everyone

well, Grandma and Grandad being away at the weekend didn't stop us from going over to their house, especially as Richard, Erika and indeed Lyla were there!

James and Lyla love seeing each other and playing together, in particular when they get to have a free hand (or, in the case of James, foot) in respect of control of the swinging seat.

they spent some quality time running around the garden, but as this involved numerous crossings of the infamous 'bridge over the river koi', we rather didn't take pictures, instead keeping an eye on them. when they are sat down and reasonably still, though, it's usually safe to snap away!

Richard and i, meanwhile, sat and watched England's latest efforts against the supposedly weak Australia.

i think my look says it all about the dismal performance!

and finally, the weekend get together did allow Erika and Michele to have a right good sit down and bang the world to rights!

hope you all have had a fantastic weekend too!

be excellent to each other!!!!!!!!!!!!!!