Thursday, 1 December 2011

Who is your favourite?


I read a report the other  day, in the newspaper, that stated that we have favourites among our children. Those of us that have children, obviously. Now that strikes me as a bit of a no-brainer. I expect that the people who wrote that earned a small fortune on the way to that discovery. I could have told them that.

It is human nature to have favourite. My Nokia E72 was my favourite mobile phone, but then the Samsung Galaxy 2 came along. Now my favourite phone is the Android powered Samsung, because it is much more powerful, does more and, to be honest, it looks a lot better.

Now no.1 daughter came along and she remains my favourite. But then the boy turned up. Now he must be my favourite as he has lots of cool features. No he doesn’t, I was thinking about the phone again.

Then just to confuse matters, no.1 daughter presented us with a granddaughter. She does have lots of cool features! I can buy her chocolates that she can spread all over herself and the carpet, and the furniture, she giggles, cries, sleeps, etc. So now she is my favourite.

What it all boils down to is that whichever child is around will be my favourite at the time. When they are all here, such as Christmas, they will all be my favourite and will be treated as such.

Until the next gadget comes along.



Giant68 Smile

Sunday, 20 November 2011

I think that I should be getting a Nobel Prize

I think that I deserve one. I have done something that the entire scientific community has failed to do.
I have invented invisibility.
I buggered if I know how I have done it but I have. It seems that while I have been driving my car around I have inadvertently left the invisibility device that I have invented turned on.
I also have a personal device secreted about my person for when I am walking around the streets, or in the supermarket.
I must have left them turned on as people seem to have an inability to see me,  whether I am walking or in the car.
I AM 6’8” tall. I weigh 18½ stone. But at times I am invisible.
The only problem is that I haven’t invented the off switch for it yet. And because the device is invisible I can’t find it to take the batteries out of it. My only hope is that I didn’t connect the the solar panel that recharges it or I may never become visible again! I will always have other cars trying to be in the bit of road that I occupy. I will always have people walking into me in the street.
Still, on the plus side I can spend my life hiding in the ladies changing rooms and generally being a pervert without fear of getting caught.
Obviously the above frame is empty to you, the reader, and I am wasting my time putting it there.

Giant68 Smile

I’m a bit of a foody.


I am never going to be thin. That is a fact. Me and food have this understanding, It looks good (actually sometimes it doesn’t) it smells good and it tastes good so, therefore, I will eat it. There are some people who use food just as a mechanism to stay alive. There are some who use their food to make them look good, or intelligent, or just plain pretentious.

I know someone who will make scrambled eggs with the whites of ½ dozen eggs and only 1 yolk because he has been led to believe that it is good for him and will help build muscle mass. he also rinses all the tomato sauce from baked beans. To me this is a waste of good food, he may as well have a meringue and some haricot beans, whether it will help with the aim of looking a bit more macho I don’t know. Nor do I care.

There are people who will cook the most fantastic sounding meals that turn out to be half a portion of something expensive but has no taste. When did sauce start being called a jus?

Nouvelle Cuisine

Now Mrs Giant 68 thinks that I am a little weird in my choice of food and the time of day that I will eat it. Just the other day I woke a little late and didn’t have time for my usual toast and coffee before I left for work. By 9am I was starving. There is a sandwich van that does the rounds where I work just after 9am so I bought  a kebab with extra hot chilli sauce. I have had numerous comments about kebab in the morning, and sober, but it was bloody lovely. Mrs Giant68 is a firm believer in breakfast foods at breakfast time. Cereal, bacon, eggs etc. Not on the same plate, obviously, but the idea of cold meat and cheese is very odd for her. But on the continent it is the norm. Personally I can eat anything at anytime of day. Maybe because I have spent most of my working life as a shift worker working earlies, lates, nights. I have come home from work in the morning and had a beer in the summer or a whisky mac in the winter. My next door neighbour would see me sat in the garden at 6:30am on a summer day and accuse me of being an alcoholic. (OK, so he may not be entirely wrong…) And food is the same. I could eat a pie and mash or a full English, it matters not what time of day it is.

Lets not be precious about our food. Lets just eat good, tasty, healthy food with no sign of a jus or a couli anywhere. Lets have gravy and custard. Good old tomato ketchup and brown sauce. Whenever you want to eat it. Today I spent Sunday lunchtime sat in a curry house (The Jewel of India, in Southampton. If you ever down this way please try it, the food and service are excellent.) eating curry and drinking beer. Mrs Giant68 was with me as were our daughter and son-in-law and the granddaughter. No Sunday roast. No roast spuds or brussel sprouts. I know some of you will be happy with the no brussel sprout bit but I love ‘em.


Even the much maligned Big Mac tastes good at times, don’t deny it. I would eat one.  With fries. And maybe some onion rings and…




Giant68 Smile

PS I make no apologies for the shameless advertising of my mates curry house. Other curry houses are available, but not as good. (In my opinion)

Thursday, 27 October 2011

i sit here in amazement…

I do. I sit here in amazement at the world around me and the things I hear and see. I am trying to finish a pub quiz that I am writing for tonight but I have been distracted by the telly and the internet. The internet purely because it is a brilliant tool for researching into questions, but also a distraction. I was looking at music downloads and found a band called ‘Mustard Pimp’. What on Earth are people taking when they come up with these names??

‘Come on, lads, what are we gonna call ourselves?’

‘Howabout Anchovy Wallpaper?’

‘Chrysanthemum Butt Plug?’

‘Nah. I’ve got it! It’ll be a sure fire winner with the oldies! Mustard Pimp!’



‘Why can’t you be happy staying plain old  Justin Beiber?’


Then the telly. Purely because it was on and the adverts came on and distracted me with a child's game that is set to be the hottest, and most wanted toy this Christmas. ‘Doggy Doo!’ A game about canine crap. You feed a plastic dog and eventually he will defecate. I imagine that the winner is the one that collects the least poop. And I used to think that Buckaroo was weird!



I am no longer a grumpy old man. I am a grumpy, bemused old man.




Wednesday, 17 August 2011

Uno cerveza, Jose, por favor…


I have been to Spain again to visit Jose the surly barman. The sun was shining, the sky was still blue, and Jose, bless him, was still surly. But he remembered us from last year and smiled, sort of, or it could have been wind. In fact it probably was wind.


It still feels a little strange to be sat under his shiny new awning in the middle of the road. Cars driving past, people strolling by. And there are me and Mrs Giant68, and our friends, sitting there  downing the cerveza like a bunch of thirsty alcoholics!


The bbq is showing signs of wear and tear, in fact, the bottom was hanging out of Joses bbq. All he did was lay a tin plate across the inside to hold the broken pallet that he was burning to cook the food over. But the sardines were fantastic that he cooked on it, and they were free.

We learnt several things while were there. Jose has a good memory (he remembered us, possibly due to the size of our tips, I expect that is how he could afford the new awning!). Friendships don’t die out over the course of a year, it was really good to see Harry, Ann, Sian, Amy and Jeremy again. And we learnt a new use for cola. I will not enlighten you over this last one, but all that were on the roundabout that night will remember it.

Now to the flights. Aircraft, it has been said, are metal tubes full of other peoples farts. The flight out certainly was. It must be the change in air pressure but the intestinal gasses are just sucked out of me when I am on a plane. I apologise to everyone that had to share the plane with me that day! But on the way back we suffered more. Not gas. Our ears were assaulted by the young children that some inconsiderate individual had sneaked on board. If you are a regular reader of my blogs you will know that I am not a fan of children in places that are not suitable. I would not consider taking a very young  child on plane to a country that is very hot  and the food is different. It doesn’t strike me as much of a holiday when you, continually, have to keep the sprogs entertained and fed with English food. They will get sunburnt and cry. They will get hungry and cry. They will get tired and cry. Their ears will hurt on a plane and they will frickin’ well cry!


Take them to Butlins, for God’s sake! They will be catered for. They will not get sunburnt as there will be no sun. They will eat ordinary food. They will sleep because the nights are not too hot. They will not cry. But most of all they will not irritate me.

Normal service has been resumed. I am grumpy again.


Giant68 Sad smile


Tuesday, 19 July 2011

I can hear music…

I have a very eclectic taste in music. This means that I have a music collection that contains albums from the likes of Black Sabbath to operettas by Gilbert and Sullivan. Now, most people I know generally stick to a relatively narrow range of musical styles, some like punk, i have a friend who is seriously into ska, each to their own i suppose.

I have my favourites and this changes depending on my mood or the time of day. My all time favourites are The Moody Blues, Pink Floyd, Joe Bonamassa and now Caro Emerald.


I have a tendency to buy albums based on hearing one track from it on the radio, or the artwork on the cover. This has led to me buying some real crap, but also some real crackers. I read a series of books by a woman called Rachel Caine, and at the back of one of them, in the credits and acknowledgements, she stated that she was inspired by listening to Joe Bonamassa. Ok, thought I, I’ll find some Joe Bonamassa and have a listen. Loved it, and now have all his albums plus one he has done with some others calling themselves Black Country Communion.

Because I am over halfway through my life I can remember when Dave Lee Travis was on Radio 1 at the weekend, to be honest I can remember Junior Choice at the weekend with Ed ‘Stewpot’ Stewart (I can still hear ‘Sparkies magic Piano’ by Henry Blair!). DLT used to play some cracking tunes and after hearing them I would, sometimes, go out and buy the album, Marc Cohn had a good album and I bought that after hearing ‘Walking in Memphis’ one Saturday. Forget that horrible cover version by Cher!!!

I have just bought an album by a woman named Caro Emerald based on listening to one track on the radio while I was out and about in the car. She sings with a very 1950’s style and I can imagine myself suited and booted in some smokey club…


I nearly added dancing to that last statement but, unlike Mrs Giant68, I have 2 left feet, in 2 right shoes. I fail to understand how people can get their bodies to move the way they do. Mrs Giant68 likes to watch ‘Strictly Come Dancing’ and, I must admit, that I occasionally glance up from my book and take a peek. I would love to be able to tango, but the bodies change direction instantly. My body was pretty obviously designed with comfort in mind and has the turning circle and stopping distance of an oceangoing supertanker! But the whole thing looks very elegant, very smooth, very not me. Still, I can dream.



Giant68 x

Sunday, 10 July 2011

The meek will not inherit the Earth!

I was taught to be courteous. I have taught my children to be courteous. I was taught to stand aside and let people pass. Hold doors open, give up my seat on the bus or train, say please and thank you.

I am proud that my children have listened to me and are polite and courteous. I have been congratulated by friends, family and various people that I don’t know from Adam, on having such well behaved and polite children.

But there comes a time when I am really fed up with being so polite. When will people get out of my way, or give up a seat for me or even say thank you? If I am walking along the street with Mrs Giant68, side by side, and people are approaching, I will step ahead and move over so that they can pass. But more and more often i am forced to leave the pavement because people will not move over for me. They want the whole pavement. Well, I am so sorry, but the worm is turning. I will no longer give you all the space you want. You will get exactly what you need. If you want more you will find that 18 stone of Giant68 is in the way.

I remember when I was a kid that people in a crowded place tend to not notice that there is a small person in the way and they do try to walk through the space where there is a small child. When my kids were small i would get them to walk in front of me. It seemed that I was invisible at this point because people would still try and walk through my kids. There have been  a number of people that have suddenly come up short when they realise that I was there! 


It still makes me chuckle that I seem to have a stealth mode fitted to my body. People will not see me. If only it was true. Stealth mode on the body? I would be in the ladies changing rooms having a good look! Unfortunately it doesn’t work like that. It’s only stealth mode when I am walking in the street or in the car (the stealth field stretches to fit around the car when I am in it!).



And then there is the, now common, greeting of a’right mate from the checkout person in the supermarket. Get it straight! I am not your mate. I will never be your mate! I am a customer. I am Sir. Or Mr Giant68. I will not be referred to as mate by someone with more piercings than a second hand dartboard, greasy hair that needs a damned good trim and rampant acne! Courtesy should be compulsory, it should be a law of nature!

I can feel my blood pressure rising just thinking about it, so I am going to open a bottle of South African Pinotage and relax for five minutes.

Bye for now.


Giant68     x

Sunday, 12 June 2011


Now I have some competition. I’ll have to up my game a little, I think. I made a suggestion, a while back, to a friend that he ought to put his money where his mouth is and write his own blog. Well, he has gone and done it. If you would care to have a look at what he writing pop over to
He is sure to have an interesting take on many things as he is a little older than me and, therefore, has more life experience than I have. Go on, have a look.

In the meantime, i am sat in my conservatory, on a Sunday morning, listening to the rain pattering on the roof, having had a very pleasant full English, dreaming about heat and sunshine.
It is June and it is cold and wet. In some weeks time myself and Mrs Giant68 will be off to sunny Spain again, and i can’t wait. I know we have had some decent weather and we need the rain but I really want heat and unbroken sunshine, Spanish beaches and Sangria…
I’m looking forward to renewing friendships with people I haven’t seen for a year, Jose the surly barman, Harry and Ann, Amy, Sian, Jeremy, alcohol and bbqs. Sleeping outside because it is too warm inside, alcohol, tapas, alcohol, you get the idea.
Before that, however, I have to make a start on the bathroom and kitchen. Mrs Giant68 has decided that we need them renewing. I don’t see what is wrong with the avocado bathroom suite. But she who must be obeyed has decreed that it will be done.  So if I fail to regularly post a new blog just assume that I am up to my elbows in a new toilet.
Giant68 Surprised smile)

Friday, 10 June 2011

Camp or what?

Did that camp thing again last month. You know, the thing with the ropes and the canvas. Oh, I see. You were thinking of the other camp thing… What do you think I am, some kind of pervert? That was a rhetorical question.


No, once again we packed the entire contents of my house into the car, good job the new car is bigger than the old one, and drove to a field just outside Salisbury. Emptied it all out onto the grass, drank lots of red wine (other types of alcohol are available) and then loaded the cars back up and went home. Sounds fun, doesn’t it? Bet you wish you had been there.

There was one subtle difference this year, though, or two. One. The weather, while good during the day, was bloody freezing at night. We were sat around the table with every article of clothing on that we could find. The alcohol did give a little warm glow but that was quickly stolen by the freezing air temperature.


The other difference was that we had our granddaughter with us. Thoughtfully, though, the little one had brought her parents with her. Now I love my grandchild to bits, but she can  be a little cow at times. She knows that she shouldn’t do some things but she does them anyway. Then gives you a look that dares you to tell her off. But as Guns ’n’ Roses once said “She’s got eyes of the bluest skies…”  And besides that, I am her granddad. I am here just to lead her into trouble. But it doesn’t lead to a very relaxing camping experience.


We’re going again at the end of this month. Just me and Mrs Giant68 and maybe a couple of friends.


Giant68 x


Friday, 13 May 2011

Far East, Leather…

I saw the last of an old friend this week. I have known her for nearly 8 years and in that time she has taken me to allsorts of places. We have been in obscure places after dark, obscure places in daylight. We have seen each other nearly every day over the eight years that we had  a relationship. And now that she is gone I, sort of, miss her.
My friends shared her, sometimes. We did it all together. We had some fun. Lots of fun.
I am talking about my car. I bought her brand, spanking new in August 2003. Now, for all the petrolhheads out there, you will not be too impressed. She was a Kia Rio. She was black, leather lined, automatic gearbox. And to me she was the best car I had ever had. I had never bought new, all my previous cars were at least 10 years old. Some of them were heaps of junk, most of them were ok. But this was brand new. When I drove her off the forecourt people looked and you could see them say “Look, a new car”
In my early days I never owned a car long enough to put it through an MOT. Probably a good thing really, thinking about the state of some of them. I remember the MK1 Escort that I cut the bumpers and installed spotlights so that it looked like the Escort Mexico. I had a 2.8 Ford Granada, she was one of my favourites. She was fast, and comfortable and saw some action (If you know what I mean)
I had a Renault 5 that you had to stall to stop the engine due to the head gasket being blown and when the key was turned off the engine would splutter on and on. And it had no radio. I traded that in for a Ford Cortina that did have a radio. Gotta have music while I drive!
But the last one lasted a long time. She had been all over the country with me and Mrs Giant68, and the two mini giants. Dusty, our dog, had drooled all over the boot on the way to the park or the beach. And now she has gone to a dealer to be refurbished and sold to someone else. I hope that whoever it is they look after her. I wonder if they will ever think of her history, of where she has been and what she has done?
I, now, begin a new relationship with a new car. She has a few miles on the clock, been around the block a few times, but times are harder than they were and a brand new one was a little too dear for me this time. But we will have fun, and travel, hopefully, to places that she, and I, have never been. I wonder what she has done and where she has been over the last 5 years? 

Saturday, 16 April 2011

Let’s take the kids!

Following on from the last blog I would like to ask a question of parents everywhere. What makes you think that you should take your young children somewhere where they will be bored to tears? Literally.



We walked round various parts of Dorset and some of these places were calm, peaceful, and places where I could relax and be at one with nature. But there were some places where parents had thought: “Darling? Lets take little Johnny ( or whatever implausible name they had decided upon 4 years ago after a sniff of the Chardonnay) and go to the Museum of Boring Life. He will love it”

Kids want two things. They want to be fed sweets and they want to be entertained. If they can’t get at least one of these then they are going to be trouble.


We sat in a Tea Shoppe ( yes, I know that Shoppe is terribly twee but tough, it fits!) and we tried to have a quiet cream tea, well Mrs Giant68 was, anyway, i was trying not to think about the pint that I could have had in the pub over the road. Anyway, there were a couple of families in the Tea Shoppe garden waiting for their pots of tea and the scones. They had their children with them. They were neither entertained or being fed sweets. They were a pain in the posterior!


For God’s sake! take them to McDonalds and feed them E numbers in a bun and wash it all down with a paper cup the same size as them full of liquid sugar. Let them play in the ball pit or just smear their ketchup covered hands on the tables and chairs. They will be happy, they will laugh. But take them to a stately home to see the artwork or the Capability Brown inspired gardens and they will be bored out of their tiny minds. Why do you do it? Surely you can’t be doing it for the kids? You must realise that they don’t want to go? Or are you trying my patience? Waiting to see how long it will be before I snap and beat you to death with their pushchair?

At least once they reach puberty they will just sulk. At least they will be quiet. But any child below the age of consent really should be left at home if you are not going to take them to the beach, swimming pool, cinema, etc.

Yes, I am a parent. And a grandparent.



Giant68 x

Two Go Mad in Dorset…

Mrs Giant68 and myself have been away for a few days. This is the first time that we have gone away from the stresses and strains of everyday life since we went to Spain last August and we needed to get away. We didn’t go too far, only to Swanage in Dorset which is only about 40 miles from home as the crow flies.Incidentally, who decided that it should be measured as the crow flies? And why should that mean a straight line? have you ever watched a crow fly? Like any other bird that I have seen they don’t necessarily fly in a straight line, they are easily distracted by shiny things and go off at a tangent a bit like a woman shopping.

No camping this time, though, as it is a bit early in the year and a bit too chilly at night. We stayed in a B & B, and rather nice it was too. ( If you want to try it it is Firswood, just round the corner from the train station.) Nice clean room and a decent brekkie, what more could we want?

We got there after lunch and herself decided that we could go for a walk. After what felt like 100 miles, all uphill, we had reached a point on the Purbeck coast that, I’m sure, only the dinosaurs had seen. For some unknown reason someone had planted a large stone globe on the edge of the cliff. All countries of the Earth marked upon its surface and stone slabs in the cliff around it. The stone slabs were marked with various poetical and scientific writings and while it was  very random thing to see it was was thought provoking.


Pint and a curry later in the evening and we went to bed knackered. Didn’t last long though, at home we have a king-size bed. My nickname should explain why. I am a little on the large side and a normal double bed is a little small. I found that Mrs Giant68 kept pushing me out, I guess she is more used to a large bed than I am!

So bleary eyed we both appeared for breakfast in the morning. Like a fool i agreed to a walk from Swanage to Corfe. Now i didn’t think that England was that big. I am sure that the walk from Swanage to Corfe was, at least, 300 miles and all uphill. We found the entry to the path under an arch of human bones and a sign that said “Abandon Hope All Ye That Enter Here”


We reached a point that was so high I could reach out and touch the Moon! Bodies of previous walkers lined the path, obviously not as hardy as us. There was a point where I thought that I would have to gnaw my own arm off as i was so hungry. And then Corfe Castle appeared out of the mist and we were saved!  A pint at the local hostelry? No. Herself wanted a bloody cream tea! So we sat in a Tea Shop and i had a coffee, all the while dreaming of gnawing her arm off!!


Fortunately we caught the steam train home. Corfe exists in a time warp.  It is forever 1932 and Will Hay runs the railway with the help of Richard Wattis (Look the pair of them up on Wikipedia, or if you are old enough you will know who I mean.) There is always ginger beer and sandwiches and the sun always shines, except when I was there!


We are home now and I am recovering with a glass of Cabernet Sauvignon.



Giant68 x

Friday, 25 March 2011

How Much???

I went to an antiques fair at the weekend. On a coach. I felt very young. Myself, Mrs Giant68, and our friends Nicky and Neil were the youngest on the coach. When the coach hit a bump you could hear the colostomy bags sloshing around! And as for the clacking of the false teeth...
Mrs Giant68 likes a wander around the antiques stalls and shops every now and then. She says it’s because she lives with an antique. Bloody cheek!
So, anyway, we set off on the coach to Shepton Mallet and the Royal Bath and West of England Showground for a good wander around the relics. Sitting on a coach is quite relaxing, letting someone else drive while you are rocked to sleep after a heavy night. The previous evening we had been to a friends house where we had some good food and copious quantities of red wine, not very conducive to an early start!
I am amazed at the prices that some of these so called antiques sell for. To be honest with you, a lot of it I would call tat and wouldn’t give you tuppence for it. Yes, there was some really nice stuff there and the prices reflected that. I was a little disappointed as I like books, and I found very little in the way of the printed word there. But I am also a Freemason and I always keep my eyes open for anything with the Masonic mark on. I cannot believe the way that the price is inflated when there is a square and compass etched on the surface!
But I enjoyed myself anyway.We were with a couple of friends. We sat in the sun and drank coffee and ate sandwiches in the sunshine. Our friends bought a blanket box and a drop-leaf table which were duly loaded into the luggage lockers on the coach. At some point on the way home I think I must have dropped asleep and dreamed that I was in a poor Carry On film, as Mrs Giant68 and Nicky giggled about getting Nicky’s chest out. And then when I was sat in the back of Nicky’s car and holding the table still while it was on the top of the blanket box being giggled at for holding holding Nicky’s legs down on her chest. Children! How immature. I got cramp in my hand while I was doing it...
Giant68 x

Sunday, 6 March 2011

Old age cometh!

That is what Mrs Giant68 has discovered recently. No she hasn’t just found some grey hairs, she already had those ( bugger! I hope she doesn’t read this or I’m in the brown stuff!).

No, she has had to obtain her first pair of prescription spectacles. She is now a speccy four-eyes! And has found that what I said some months ago in that glasses are made from the most expensive material known to man is true. She only needs reading glasses, unlike muggins here, who now wears varifocals, but they still cost here over a hundred quid.

I have also discovered that now I have an Amazon Kindle I may not need to wear the varifocals so much for reading as I can increase the font size of the book I am reading to the point where i can read it from over the road! Unfortunately, although Mrs Giant68 bought me the Kindle for my birthday, she has pinched it supposedly “to see if it is worth me having one” she said. Every time I think I’ll sit down and read a book on the damn thing she has it.


It’s a good job i have a few ordinary books around the house so that I can still read something. That’s something that annoys herself, the approx 5000 books I have kicking around the house. I did say that I would not buy anymore books if she bought me a Kindle but now she has appropriated it I may have to continue. Waterstones here I come!



Giant68  :0)

Sunday, 13 February 2011

While the cats away

Unfortunately mice don’t play. Not anymore anyway. It was like this: Mrs Giant68 was away for a four nights last week. She works in a school, as a librarian and learning assistant, and she was going with the kids and a few of the teachers on residential week in the New Forest. I was staying at home. Now I can visualise men out there in  the wide world thinking “ marvellous! Beer, sport and porn for a few days” By the time she comes home i would be drunk and blind! In the real world it doesn’t seem to work like that. She went on the Monday morning, i had already left for work, so I didn’t see her (apart from the back of her neck when i sneaked out of bed at ½ 5, in the dark!) I put in a 9 hour day and came home knackered. Spent a while in the kitchen cooking dinner, washed up, put everything away, dozed off in front of the TV. No beer, no sport, no porn.
Tuesday, almost the same apart from the trip out into the New Forest in the evening to visit Mrs Giant68. Came home, had a coffee, dozed in front of the TV, eventually went to bed. Again no beer, no sport, no porn.
Can you see a pattern emerging here?
At the end of the week I had, probably, spent more time at work and in the kitchen than I had in front of the TV watching Sky Sports. I had spent, maybe, ½ an hour checking my emails, several hours asleep in front of the TV and a few hours a night in bed.
The best thing about being at home on my own was that in the morning when I got up I didn’t have to sneak around the house in the dark trying not to wake Mrs G up. I could turn all the lights on, turn the radio up while I made my coffee, and could get dressed in the light for a change.
I think that I must be getting old. Or as Mini Giant68 says “already old”
When I was home that week I didn’t speak to a single person, there was no one to speak to. In the past I talked to the dog, but if you follow my blog you will know that is in the past. Most of the time I was pretty bored. You get used to having someone around and miss the social interaction when they are not there. Even if you spend the time in separate rooms there is still the availability of interaction and when it is not there you find that there is a black hole. Just goes to show that we humans are social animals. And having physical  social networks is vital, not the cyber networks that are available through Facebook etc. I think that if I had to live on my own I would probably go crazy
Also it proved to me that I can cook quite well. I ate very well that week. Started off the week with the remains of a stew leftover from the weekend but as the week progressed the meals got better. Only had oven chips once and no takeaways! I made a mean gravy to go with the faggots I bought from the butcher. And when Mrs Giant68 came home I bought some decent steak from the butcher which I cooked with a few onions, and I spent the afternoon making bread.
Anyone fancy a slice of Chorizo and Thyme Fougasse? Oops, sorry it’s all gone.
Giant68 x

Sunday, 30 January 2011

Fascinating world of the Blog

This blogging thing is quite a fascinating thing. A couple of years ago I decided to start writing this blog, basically because I wanted to write a novel but didn’t have the time or the inspiration and blogging seemed to be the next best thing. It is very difficult to come up with an idea for a book when you have read so many. Every idea I had for my novel would turn out to be already taken. A while back I had an idea for a book involving zero point energy. Then found that there were references to it in books by Ian Banks and now one by Neal Asher, bugger! Never mind, I expect that they are writing books that will be far more entertaining than anything I could ever write. And, to be honest, I’m now quite happy to read the Asher and Banks novels and I’ll stick to blogging.
Even blogging can be hard. Sometimes I have no ideas and sometimes the ideas come when I have no way of recording them and then I forget them. Yesterday I had a brilliant idea for a blog, I didn’t write it down and now I have forgotten what it was. I must learn to have a notebook to hand and write these things down. Although I think that the ones that come to me while I am sitting at the laptop and just flow from the brain through the fingers to the keyboard and then to the blog site are the best ones, generally funnier and more interesting.
I set up the blog on this site for no other reason than it was the first one I looked at and it seemed easy. And it was easy. Set up the account, as I already had a Google account I was ½ way there, and Bob is your parents brother, so to speak. I write about things that bug me, that I find interesting, or just weird things.
There is a rather interesting feature of this site. You can look at the statistics for your blog. Now I am sure that some blogs will have thousands of hits every day, Walker of Worlds, one that I follow and have contributed to, is one of them and I'm sure that Mark is justifiably proud. I, on the other hand, have only a few hits. But I can look at them and sometimes I am surprised by what I find. I have just had a look and find that my blog is read by people around the world. The Canadian I would imagine might be my cousin. The English ones would be Ralph, my family, other friends and relatives.  Once it was read and commented on by one of my favourite authors, Neal Asher, that gave me a great feeling of satisfaction, someone important had read what I had written! The reader in India? South Korea? Russia? Finland? Don’t know. But it would be nice to know who they  are. If you are reading this in some far away place then add a comment at the bottom, let me know where you are, I would love to know. Even if you are not so far away, put a comment, be it Milton Keynes, Slough, whatever, I want to know. 
Cheers, where ever you are! Keep reading my blog and allowing me to have that have that warm feeling of satisfaction…

Friday, 7 January 2011

The menswear Black hole

I have noticed something over the last year. I find it harder and harder to buy clothes in my size. And, to be honest, Clothes in any size.

As you will, no doubt, know from following this blog on a regular basis, I have lost a little bit of weight. I am now somewhere in the region of 4st lighter than I was a year ago. This has led to various shopping expeditions to buy clothes. Losing weight is costing me a fortune. Boy, do I wish I’d kept the clothes I expanded out of! I’m sure I would have looked a treat in my skin tight jeans, Frankie says… T-shirt and leg warmers!! Maybe I ought to grow the mullet back again, or maybe not…

But i have discovered that menswear departments and shops are shrinking at an alarming rate. I walked into the local BHS just recently and went in the direction of the menswear dept. I think that I must have blinked and missed it! Oh! There it is! Over in that corner, hiding behind the lingerie section. Well at least I can have a snigger on the way through.

Some days later I found that Asda are the same. menswear has been pushed into the furthest corner of the shop, on the upper floor.


Will it come to a point where the male of the species will have only a choice of size for the one style of clothing that is available. Look around the High Street where you live, in the UK as that is where i have the most experience, and you will see that the traditional Men's clothing shops are shrinking. Burtons is a pale shadow of what it used to be. Next seems to only supply clothes to those who are in touch with their feminine side, and couldn’t put a shelf up if they tried.

But if you are a woman! Wow! The choice you have. Colours, sizes, styles, whatever you want. Shops that go on forever.

Only the likes of Marks and Spencer and Debenhams are holding back the flood of womenswear. Although their menswear departments are still shrinking, but much slower than anywhere else. I expect that they will vanish completely at some point in the near future.

Imagine the conversation in 50 years time:


“Yes, son”

“Do you remember when you could buy a suit?”

“Oh yes, son. Those were the days! I remember it was just before global warming and the rise of sea level. Men could buy allsorts of clothing. Trousers, shirts, jackets, ties, a whole suit of clothes if he felt that way inclined. Good old days. I miss that more than i miss the Maldives…”