Odds and sods


Scotland, near the Isle of Skye   © PJ Croft 2016

I bought a couple of walking sticks last week. They came with instruction manuals. No kidding 🙂


This time I really must put my name and phone number on them. I lose them sometimes by leaving them in shopping trolleys, I think.

I bought an umbrella in San Fransisco in 1988, just a cheapie. I had it about 20 minutes, I think, before I left it in a store and lost it.


I bought a couple of packets of croutons a few weeks ago. I used the first one, then got the second packet out of the cupboard. The package felt a little odd, it’s metallised plastic and it felt a lot softer than the first packet.

After I used some croutons (in my soup), I looked for the Use By date. How about 17 01 13!

The croutons seem OK and it’s no use taking them back, I have no proof of purchase. How could they have been on the shelf so long like that? Unless … unless – it’s [20]17-01-13? Must be. They smell and taste fine.



Scotland a few hours later.   © PJ Croft 2016

What crazy weather. After a week of low 20s, today is suddenly shooting up to 37degC. But tomorrow is forecast to be 20degC, with showers on Wednesday. Crazy. Must be the Trump Effect.


Aaaah. At 7.30am I’ve just done 10 full minutes on the treadmill at 3.0km/h, on the flat, admittedly, but I’ve got to start carefully. I haven’t been exercising enough, and I can feel it. I hope (not ‘hopefully’) I’ll do much better now with this treadmill. I’ll try for at least 5 minutes every hour or so. The aim is to be able to do a full 30 mins at a good speed and a moderate slope, enough that I’m sweating. I was doing this in 2008.

Strangely, my pulse went up to 110bpm at the start, then fell back to 72-80bpm after a few minutes. I think that’s good, isn’t it?

I was watching SBS and wouldn’t you know it, after the Al Jazeera tail end, the Italian News hadn’t arrived, so I had to watch 7 minutes of weather patterns. Duh.


Speaking of the Trump Effect, a lot of Americans are thinking of migrating to New Zealand. So New Zealand has a major earthquake. Message? Don’t come?


Trump is changing his mind already about promises he made during the campaign. He’s not going to build a wall on the US-Mexican border, only a fence. He lied every time he opened his mouth. How could anyone believe him? Yet they did. Why? Wishful thinking? Deranged minds, more like it.


Interesting article yesterday in a webmag called Quartz (thanks my dear), about the South African experience. After Mandela stepped down as President, they elected Thabo Mbeki as his successor. He was well qualified and quite a good man, but dull and not well connected to the electorate.

So in 2008 they replaced him as President with a popular good time guy who appealed to the electorate, Jacob Zuma. They ignored his terrible past, and now it’s come back to bite them. Zuma is incompetent, corrupt as hell and is trashing the reputation of South African black rule. There’s a lesson there for the USA, you’d think. Unfortunately, the Chump is going to cause immense damage in the next four years. It’s damage that will not be limited to the USA alone. It will affect all of us. Dog help us.

The magazine calls him “bigoted, lying, self-contradicting, autocratic, anti-science, tantrum-throwing man-child”. How nice. He doesn’t read anything, relying on his staff to summarise documents and contracts for him. He doesn’t sleep. He usually acts on the advice of the last manager he talks to, so his managers compete to be the last in line to see him. He hates meetings and can’t stick to agendas. He has difficulty understanding big ideas and almost always acts on his gut instincts. How the hell is he going to cope with all the detail of the presidency?


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