Category Archives: Disaster


I’ve had separate text message exchanges with two blokes this evening. About Cheburashka. 

That’s the weird little thing with big ears in the middle. 

My first encounter with Cheburashka was at an Eels gig. An old film was the support. The dialogue was Russian, but some Eels content had been cleverly added. 

Anyway, both myself and my mate Ian have a Cheburashka condiment holder. I fear that mine may be radioactive. I’ve never asked whether Ian’s might be. Both were bought from Russia, mine from the Ukraine. 

An old mate, Tom, is currently in the Crimea. He’s not yet encountered Cheburashka. 

Another day in the shed

A larger area of wall was tackled today. As with previous sections, the outer wall was in a terrible state. 

So some rebuilding was necessary.

Unfortunately, I wasn’t able to complete the job. The heavens opened just as I was running low on cement. The rain was so heavy, mixing more was out of the question. 

This presented a problem in that I’d removed a very large piece of stone, exposing the garden of the house behind ours. 

Yes, the black stuff is compacted soil. While I fear that our neighbour’s garden may fall into our shed, I shall try to leave work early enough one day to complete the job. 

While on the subject, the large stone was too heavy to lift. 

And the pile of stone in the garden has grown a little. 


My second in command has a fear of sharks; not that we come across many in Gateshead. 

So watching a film involving people trapped in a cage at the bottom of the sea possibly wasn’t a great idea. 

And the inevitable happened. When a girl was suddenly attacked by one rather huge beast, my second in command shrieked, leaping into the air, knocking a can of beer from my hand. 

Everything is wet. I am wet. 

A flower

We have one solitary flower in our garden. A half hour ago, we had several. However, my second in command decided that she’d cut the grass while I was applying PVA to the spare bedroom walls. 

I did point out the locations of plants of beauty, but it was to no avail. All but one were mercilessly cut down.

I’m now sitting in the evening sunshine with a beer, overlooking a scene of devastation. 

Iron II

Now that it’s cooled down, I’ve been able to inspect the iron. It seems that the plate has acually partly melted. 

One must wonder what these things are actually made from. 

Iron & fire

Or, rather, iron on fire. As I was ironing shirts for work, the iron suddenly gripped a shirt, dragging as I tried to move it. This was quickly followed by a strong electrical burning smell. And smoke. 

Having experienced a loss of electricity last weekend, my cat-like reflexes sprung into action and I quickly turned off the power. 

The iron then entered full burning mode, but an (other) electrical disaster was avoided. 

I may recount last weekend’s trauma on another occasion. Tomorrow, a new iron shall be purchased. 

The end

The end of Augustines. At least for my second and command and I. There’s a gig in Belfast, then a final one in Liverpool, but we’ll not be there. It’s quite an emotional time for my second in command; she’s been addicted to their music for some time now. 

And, so, we’re seeing them this very evening in Glasgow, my favourite city. 

We’re currently in the 13th Note, which happens to be my favourite bar. A bar that serves the most delicious falafel burgers. 

My second in command lost her (most expensive ever) Brewdog hat this afternion. In the Horseshoe Bar, she believed. But it’s not there. 

It’s possibly a day for lost things; Augustines, my second in command’s Brewdog hat and, technically not lost today, but purchased across the road to this very bar a few weeks ago, before being mislaid the next day, sheriff’s badge. 

One of the above has now been replaced. 

Glastonbury II

After Thursday’s failed attempt to secure Glastonbury tickets, I wasn’t at all hopeful for this morning’s, larger, sale. As usual, I waited 15 minutes to connect to the booking page, then there was the, again usual, countless refreshes. 

All to no avail though. While the booking service unexpectedly didn’t crash, the festival site itself wouldn’t refresh, or show the usual Twitter feed. So I couldn’t see that it’d sold out until the booking page was updated. 

We’ll probably try again in April, for the ticket resale, but with only small numbers I have to be realistic about the chance of success. There’s probably more chance with Oxfam stewarding, so we’re on their waiting list. 

And, at the end of the day, there’s always 2019.

We did regret not booking an alternative festival this year, but at least that won’t happen next year. We’ve already bought tickets for Kendal Calling; Karl and Michelle are thinking of doing the same. And this might give us the nudge we need to try Sziget. We need to explore the logistics I think. 

Washing machine

My elation after finishing off the new fence last night, followed by my realisation that my first mortgage was paid off a month ago, was somewhat dampened by the discovery that I’d washed my second weekly bus ticket in the space of a few days. 


A couple of hours ago, while drilling a hole in the wall upstairs, with the window wide open, a wasp flew in and attacked me. Taking evasive action ( I jumped off the ladder and waved my arms about to fend off the creature), I narrowly escaped the monster (it was huge). 

Clutching the nearest weapon (shoe), I quickly transformed from victim to hunter. But the beast was nowhere to be seen. 

I resumed my drilling, then, while pushing cables through the wall, I heard buzzing. Looking down from the heights of my ladder, I saw the wasp in the clutches of a fearsome spider. My flailing had apparently knocked the wasp into a cobweb. 

Which is why dust, spiders and webs should be left alone.