Posts

Showing posts from 2006

sh*g no more

Tomorrow, it will be two years to the day since I started this blog. What better a time to finish it.

I chose the title “A Bit Of Pampering…etc” because I thought it was funny, because I thought it was different, and, ok, I’ll admit it, because it began with the letter “A” and I hoped it would rank high on other blogger’s alphabetical link lists.

Once a week on my “bitesize bullets” post I do a thing where I show you some of the funnier google searches which were used to create a hit on my blog.

What you don’t see are some of the sick permutations using the word “sh*g” that get here. And some of those posts are about members of my family. All it takes for the searches to get here, as I’m sure most of you know, is the numerous words to be there somewhere on a particular page, in no particular order.

Even so, I don’t like people like that finding their way here that way on a regular basis, so it’s time to call it a day. Sorry, but putting the asterisk in won’t cut it.

But if you think a few …

bitesize bullets

Image
TEN TOPICS…
NO PARTICULAR ORDER…
ONE MAN’S OPINIONS…
FIFTY WORD LIMIT ON EACH…
THINGS ARE GONNA START LOOKIN MIGHTY DIFFERENT ROUND HERE…



SUMMARY : Last Wednesday I blogged about a ludicrous protocol at the US Embassy. Then over on my Irish-specific blog, I commented on the new leader of the PD party, then I praised Gay Byrne for doing his job. Over the weekend I did two “sportsshorts” posts to catch up.

PRAISE: A highlight of my recent wedding celebration was my new brother-in-law John’s excellent depiction of the dance from the FatBoy Slim video “Praise You”. It must have been the cocktails that inspired him. We all tried our best to join in.

RADICAL : As I suggest in my pre-amble, prepare for things to start looking quite different in JL Pagano BlogWorld. It’s high time I mixed things up a little. Hopefully it will all work out ok.

QUESTIONABLE: Considering how well the Catholic Church handled his accession from a PR standpoint, I’d be very surprised if Pope Benedict XVI made a mis…

it’s SO not about the money

Image
First I’d like to thank everyone who has offered both congratulations and commiserations over the past few weeks; it has meant a lot to me.

Trust me, I would really like to resume to normal posting as soon as possible, but I have had problems with my broadband since the weekend which have only just been resolved. I’d like to post about something unbelievable that happened to me the other day.

All I had to do was call the US Embassy here in Dublin and report my grandmother’s death so I could stop her Social Security payments. I really honestly thought I was doing the right thing. Well, of course I was, but I still get angry when I think about the conversation that took place.

I chose my title for this post very carefully. This is really not about the money whatsoever. I hope having read what transpired you will see where I am coming from.

After reporting my grandmother’s passing to the Federal Benefits Division, the lady very kindly expressed her condolences, and after calling up her Socia…

the month of remembrance

Image
Please forgive me for this post – it is not my wish to bring anyone down, it’s just that I want to continue my blogging hobby and I don’t want to do so while pretending nothing has happened over the past week.

I suppose it would be wise to inform those who may not know that my grandparents brought me up as their son.


The month of August, particularly the end of it, will always be one of remembrance for my family.


August 20th, 1936



My grandparents are married in Nashua, New Hampshire.

August 21st, 1913

My grandfather is born.

August 22nd, 2004

I propose to Sandra.

August 24th, 1977

My grandparents and I say our last farewells to most of our friends as we make final preparations to emigrate from the Bay Area of California all the way to Ireland.

August 26th, 2006



On the happiest day of my life, Sandra and I are married in front of friends and most of my family.

August 27th, 2004

My grandfather passes away peacefully in his sleep at the age of 91.

August 28th, 2002



My grandmother writes the above note a…

bitesize bullets

Image
TEN TOPICS…
NO PARTICULAR ORDER…
ONE MAN’S OPINIONS…
FIFTY WORD LIMIT ON EACH…
MY LAST DAYS OF FREEDOM…



WEIGHT : It’s starting to look as though my pre-wedding Battle With The Bulge is going to end in a tie. Though it hasn’t gone up since I started measuring a few weeks ago, it hasn’t gone down either. Oh, well.

DISTRACTION: Isn’t it extremely convenient that all of America is talking about a 10-year old murder case when much more important things are happening in Iraq, Lebanon, and most importantly for me, the upcoming elections where Dubya was due to get a pasting. So much for prevalent Liberal media bias.

LINK : Absolutely no contest for my link shout-out this week – fellow blogger Rinceoir kindly included my blogs in his “Why Link?” series. Much appreciated sir! Check out his Tiny Timid Thoughts when you have the chance.

JUSTICE: For all Irish people who presume the 11 people charged for involvement in the recent airport scares, I have two words - BIRMINGHAM SIX. To those who thin…

they must be lonesome every night

Image
And there was me thinking blogging was the world’s most wonderful waste of time.

First we have a bunch of space nerds convening to determine whether or not Pluto is actually a planet. I mean – WHY? Is it for some commercial rezoning purpose so that they can open a Starbucks out there?

Anyway – according to Reuters’ Oddly Enough files, we seem to have something that takes the biscuit. Can you believe that someone is sad enough to be bothered with this?

It's now or never: find Elvis for $3 million

Have you seen the king? As the 29th anniversary of his death passes, a $3 million (1.6 million pounds) reward is being offered for anyone who finds Elvis Presley alive.

U.S. writer, actor and filmmaker Adam Muskiewicz says he and a producer friend set up the website www.elviswanted.com mostly for publicity and to get the public involved in an independent documentary exploring the myth that Elvis is still alive.

"The hoaxing of Elvis Presley's death is the biggest myth in the history of …

bitesize bullets

Image
TEN TOPICS…
NO PARTICULAR ORDER…
ONE MAN’S OPINIONS…
FIFTY WORD LIMIT ON EACH…
WHAT GOES ON TOUR STAYS ON TOUR…



RECOVERING : The stag weekend in Westport was perfect in my book. Of course there were a few drawbacks, but I had a blast, and I’m very grateful to the lads who came along and made it so. Tradition prevents me from blogging about particulars, however…

RENTAL: If you liked The Matrix you will enjoy V for Vendetta, though you may need to bone up of the whole Guy Fawkes thing first to get what it’s about. Ironically I saw it for the first time the night all the airport scares were happening.

LINK : For my link shout-out this week I have to thank Phillipa for adding me to her blogroll on her daily News Planet. As you can see I have done likewise.

BUSHBASHING: "Apparently the Dixie Chicks had to cancel 14 shows on their tour, because of slow ticket sales. There's some concern they're losing their fan base. How ironic is that? They finally have something in common wit…

no more sides

Image
Yet more fear at our airports.

Where will the airline restrictions stop?

Can’t a volatile liquid/detonator be easily concealed within a suicide bomber’s clothing?

Does this mean we have to travel naked or not at all?

Well let me make a few points perfectly clear.

I will NOT hold my tongue when I hear George W Bush make such ludicrous statements as “America is safer now than at 9/11”.

I will NOT let people like him force me to polarize my views to “side” with him in his so-called “war on terror”.

I will NOT be terrorized by extremists, whether they speak from from a bunker in Afghanistan, the White House, a mosque or Downing Street.

I will NOT allow my desire to give an open-minded appraisal to events be deterred by being dubbed a “conspiracy theorist”.

I will NOT let this bullshit ruin my honeymoon in New York in a few weeks.

I will NOT feel compelled to teach my children to be afraid.

For as long as you call someone your enemy, they will be.

bitesize bullets

Image
TEN TOPICS…
NO PARTICULAR ORDER…
ONE MAN’S OPINIONS…
FIFTY WORD LIMIT ON EACH…
REMEMBER GEORGE GALLOWAY?…



WEIGHT : Still no increase, but no decrease either in my bulk. The good news is, I survived a jog last Thursday morning, so hopefully I will be able to make that a habit for the weeks to come which should well help out my cause.

PREPOSTEROUS… : …is defined as “contrary to nature, reason or common sense”, and is a word frequently used by George Galloway in his incredible interview with Anna Botting of Sky News over the weekend. You just simply have to watch this if you have any interest in the Lebanese situation.

LANGER… : …is my Irish Slang O’ The Week as recommended by Dolores McCrumble a while ago (sorry it took so long – I’m working in alphabetical order!). A langer can either be the male reproductive organ or simply an idiot. Either way, not something you want to be called.

RENTAL : Lucky Number Slevin is definitely worth a rental. Good plot, good twists and turns, good perfor…

the mother of all battles

Image
I'm never averse to allowing a guest writer on my blog, and today is no exception. I wanted to write about the crisis in Lebanon, but then my mother showed me this piece she wrote and I figured it would be better to share it with you guys instead.


"Lebanon 2006: Déjà Vu All Over Again, Again" by Maura Lee August 1, 2006

A lesson cannot be learned if it is improperly understood, and it seems obvious from everything that’s been written from both sides of this sad and monstrous tale that the powers-that-be just do not get it.

The lesson of Viet Nam was that it is impossible to prevail over an indigenous popular opponent unless the invader/attacker is prepared to kill them all. Period.

That’s it – what part of this is unclear?

Regardless of the force of your fighting machine – whether you are using Fourth Generation warfare, Space Tools from DARPA, or Vulcan Martial Arts – you will fail, unless you are prepared to extinguish the lives of every man, woman, and child in the country…

bitesize bullets

Image
TEN TOPICS…
NO PARTICULAR ORDER…
ONE MAN’S OPINIONS…
FIFTY WORD LIMIT ON EACH…
MOVE OVER SPIELBERG…



WEIGHT : I think I offset what gains I had by my diet by over-indulging in beer over the weekend. The scales still have me at X minus four, which means nothing lost this week. I want to see some results fast so it’s nose to the grindstone from now on.

TUNES: How did I grow up missing the Stone Roses for God’s sake??? I got their greatest hits CD in a sale at the weekend and I couldn’t believe how many of the 15 tracks I recognised but never knew it was them. “Fools Gold” was the only one I knew.

LYRICAL :
“Step down, step down. Watch a heel crush, crush. Uh oh, this means no fear - cavalier. Renegade and steer clear! A tournament, a tournament, a tournament of lies. Offer me solutions, offer me alternatives and I decline.”

Who sang that? Check comments for the answer.

BUSHBASHING: He sent troops into Iraq for weapons that weren’t there, but when Israel and Hezbollah are firing the real th…

disappear

Just began messing around with Windows Movie Maker and YouTube. This took me ten minutes to put together. I have to warn you I could be addicted to doing this kind of stuff...

croc of old?

Image
Say what you like about people who work in legal circles – perhaps indeed they are on a gravy train born mostly from our misery, but from what little I’ve seen of the inside of a courtroom, its day-to-day running must surely be a perennial snoozefest.

Given that, just imagine how much enjoyment those in attendance at the Liverpool Crown Court would of gotten out of this case, as described by Ananova’s Quirky files.


Crocodile Gran

An 80-year-old woman re-created a scene from the film Crocodile Dundee to tackle a knife-wielding burglar.

Winifred Whelan, from Liverpool, was threatened in her home by a man brandishing a 10-inch knife.

The pensioner grabbed a larger carving knife from her kitchen before shouting: "That's not a knife, this is a knife!"

Mrs Whelan was quoting the famous line from Crocodile Dundee when the film's star Paul Hogan brandishes a hunting knife at a mugger.

She told a newspaper: "I said to the robber: "You call that a knife?" His was aroun…

bitesize bullets

Image
TEN TOPICS…
NO PARTICULAR ORDER…
ONE MAN’S OPINIONS…
FIFTY WORD LIMIT ON EACH…
I WONDER DOES ANYONE CHECK MY FIFTY WORD LIMIT…



WEIGHT : So far so good with my plan to reach my goal weight for the wedding- where X is what I weighed last week, I’m currently at X minus four pounds. Still a lot of jogging and pumping iron and dodging delectable dishes left to do!

BUSHBASHING: I was a bit alarmed to hear that there is a possibility that Florida governor Jeb Bush may run for President in 2008. I think twelve years of Bush rule is enough for everyone, don’t you? Jeb was in Dublin recently for a lecture and got a frosty welcome.

JACKS… : …is my Irish Slang World O’ The Week and is a word used mainly in Dublin which refers to the men’s room. While I’m on the letter “J” I will also explain “jar” which means a pint of alcohol. “He’s been in the jacks all day after too many jars”

FLICK: I finally got to see The Da Vinci Code, and I suppose I have to say that Ron Howard made as good a stab as anyo…

shot to hell

Image
"...from this day until the ending of the world but we in it shall be remembered. We few, we happy few, we band of brothers, For he today who sheds his blood with me shall be my brother..."

William Shakespeare's 'King Henry V' : Act IV, Scene III



Say what you like about Steven Spielberg.

Whatever about his films, he has always retained an unerring talent for reaching out from his director’s chair right through the camera lens, through your television screen, and right down into your tear ducts, emptying everything inside – a volume of tears you never even knew was there.

A long time ago, since we share a similar taste for TV drama, a good friend of mine suggested I buy the DVD box set of “Band of Brothers". As I watched it unfold I realised it was based on a part of the American WWII campaign very close to the situation my grandfather found himself in when he served in military intelligence.

For some reason, however, despite the family interest, I found viewing t…

bitesize bullets

Image
TEN TOPICS…
NO PARTICULAR ORDER…
ONE MAN’S OPINIONS…
FIFTY WORD LIMIT ON EACH…
STOP BLOGGING? I WILL IN ME ARSE!…



WEIGHT : The countdown to the wedding is nigh and my weight has become an issue yet again. Let’s call my weight this morning X and see how much under that I can go between now and the nuptials.

TUNES: OK this is either totally cool or totally embarrassing. You decide. A while ago I came across my vinyl “collection”, most of which were ready for throwing out, but I did keep the first record I ever owned myself, ABBA the Album, which I got when I was 8.

DOH! : On Saturday on my Irish blog I bemoaned the fact that no Irish station covered the midweek club soccer games, only to be politely informed they did. It’s one of the more embarrassing things that can happen to a blogger. Suffice to say my researcher has since been sacked.

HOOKED: Though I’m not what you’d call a gamer, I do have a PS2. I never dreamed about buying a golf game until I tried the one on my mobile. I have s…

sprechen sie fußball?

Image
Can you name the countries cheered on by the fans in each pic and work out what way I've organized them? Click the picture for a closer look - the answer is in the comments section.

Though the so-called mainstream media will have you thinking otherwise, I feel my little collage above fully captures the memory which will last the longest from the German World Cup extravaganza over the past month.

I will refer briefly to the head-butting incident. At first, I was relieved that such an action was not rewarded by ultimate victory. Then, I was disgusted that simple taunting actually could be. Now, I am relieved to hear that FIFA will be investigating what Materazzi supposedly said to Zidane – though in a way they have to, since “Kick Racism Out Of Football” is quite rightly one of their banner campaigns this weather.

As for the match itself, I thought the bloody thing kicked off at 8pm my time. I had it all organised – my kids were with me, and we were going to get a Chinese dinner from t…

bitesize bullets

Image
TEN TOPICS…
NO PARTICULAR ORDER…
ONE MAN’S OPINIONS…
FIFTY WORD LIMIT ON EACH…
CONGRATULAZIONI ITALIA CAMPIONI DELLA COPPA DEL MONDO!…



STATWATCH : First thanks to whoever reads my Irish blog from Granby in Canada (or should I say Quebec?), for they provided it with its 10,000th hit last week. I also recently surpassed 30,000 hits since May 2005 between all of my blogs. Go me.

CALCIO: I would like to wish the Italian soccer team all the best as having won the World Cup they of course now go on to take part in the Solar System Cup where I expect they will run rings around the Saturn champions in the first round. Boom boom.

JOKE :
Scientist1 : “Hi - I’m from the lab across the hall– we were wondering if you can spare any remains from your rodent dissection program – we are particularly interested in the back half of the animals.”

Scientist2 : “I couldn’t give a rat’s ass.”

Scientist1 : “Sorry I only asked!”

TUNES: Using the Cure’s “Just Like Heaven” for my lyrical bullet the other week insp…