Just hang over those balconies and railings and paint them please

Flip side of the coin

Returning to Gib is truly like entering a different world as we queue up (15 mins so not bad) to cross the frontier.

So this is the comparison to The Vegman Cometh.

Tooooo many nice people keep asking about The Ankle and I said I’d add a brief update.

I was sort of dismissed by physio. ‘Community can come and see you about the stairs again.’ No mention of a further appointment at the hospital.

But going there to show that I could do the exercises I’d been given, go up and down three mock-up stairs in the gym, answer some ‘how are you feeling’ questions didn’t strike me as a good use of time either. I also needed to make my own way to hospital for future appointments, no more patient transport for me. If I could do that, I would hardly need physio would I?

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Is there life after death?

And if you don’t believe in a god, is it possible to believe in a life after (physical) death?

First though, the results of the atheist/agnostic poll, and many thanks to everyone who answered, and commented of course.

Poll results

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The Vegman Cometh

You know you have become truly Spanish when the biggest topic of conversation is, when will the vegman come?

When we first arrived we used him regularly. He turned up on Thursday afternoons at different times, which was annoying. Sitting around for hours waiting for the van was frustrating.

On Friday a different vegman came, but we didn’t use him. Not as much choice.

Then Thursday man added Mondays to his routine, so we had two days in which to buy cheap fresh veg delivered to our house. Back when money was plentiful, we would all rush out to be first in the queue to fight for fresh peas at four euros or so a kilo.

Some years ago, a new veg shop opened in the village. Brilliant. Not only was it cheap, she had regular delicacies such as setas, wild asparagus, or normal asparagus, always had nabos (white turnips), artichokes, fennel, and lots and lots of veg for me to drool over. She had peas and broad beans before everyone else. She’d also buy them in for me. So vegman bit the dust.

My tiny veg plot, peas, beans, lettuces, herbs, and a rather large artichoke. Maybe best to put him in his own pot in future ...
My tiny veg plot, peas, beans, lettuces, herbs, and a rather large artichoke. Maybe best to put him in his own pot in future …

But, when I returned after my broken ankle exile, she had closed. Gone. Shut. Fin. I was gutted. Back to vegman, who had now changed his routine to morning calls. Much, much better. So we resumed our gracious patronage of all of three or four euros. Times are hard and money’s tight, so the veg are cheap now.

On Monday, Partner sat outside with his list and some cash. After a while, he asked the neighbours if el vercero was coming.

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For Your Eyes Only

Well, only if you are an atheist/agnostic. Although maybe if you aren’t you may be mildly interested in this fascinating categorisation of non-believers.

Are you an intellectual atheist? An activist? Or just plain apathetic?

These and more categories come from an interesting paper led by Christopher Silver, at The University of Tennessee.

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How not to write

Finishing a good book recently, I was left in a quandary how to review it.

The storyline was interesting with a convincing plot and some good characters. There was a nice balance between action, dialogue and narration.

So what was wrong with it?

There weren’t even a lot of spelling errors, although combined with misplaced words, they just hit double figures.

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Remake

Well this was an interesting one.

Remake by Ilima Todd is a young adult fantasy dystopian book. Because all books need labels these days.

To break that down, young adult means soppy romance in there, fantasy means unreal, and dystopian means 1984 or Brave New World.

So, brief synopsis is that our heroine, Nine, lives in Freedom One (aka 1984 where everything means the opposite) and due to circumstances, she finds herself outside the province and gets to look at a different option of freedom.

She is brought up as quasi gender-neutral, but only because all children receive hormone suppressant injections. She has no family, rather she is part of a batch of bred hatchlings.
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The privileged atheist with time on her hands

‘Can I go to Sunday School?’ I asked. Well, other school friends went and said it was good so I thought I was missing out.

I was duly despatched, with my elder cousin who lived next door, to the Metho one in town at 3pm.

Boring, boring. Boring as hell. So to speak. We had to draw pictures of bible stories. I couldn’t draw at the best of times. Where was the intellectual stimulation?

I gave it one or two goes and decided watching the Sunday afternoon film with my parents in the smoke-filled sitting room after lunch was a better alternative.

My thirst for extra knowledge had evaporated rapidly.

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The house at the finca

A rose by any other name

Or, what’s in a name? (Credit to Will S)

Because if you try and differentiate between the so-called different types of editor you need, you will end up with an infarct, of the myocardium.

An aside, when I was discussing heart attacks – as lay people call an MI – with a clinical colleague, I asked him why it was called a myocardial infarction. ‘Because it’s an infarct of the myocardium,’ he said, puzzled at my stupidity.

But not everyone walks around talking about infarcts and the myocardium. Most of us still talk about heart attacks.

Just as most of us talk about editors, not line editors, or copy editors, or content/developmental/ structural editors. And editors are different to proofreaders. Or are they?
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Racism and feminism

Two sides of the same coin? No. Discrimination, well, discriminates differently.

With which we move from Islam to one of the other big three sexist/misogynist religions, in this case, Judaism.

Yup, the one about Jewish men refusing to sit next to women.

Did they think they were all menstruating or what?

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Racism or reality?

The wonderful thing about the internet (somewhat like Tiggers) is that you can look up all manner of people, school friends, work colleagues, people you loathed, anyone really, from the past and find out what they are up to.

OK, so Helen Fielding, in the year above me at school, isn’t too hard to find. And given that I am not a fan of chick lit, romance or Pride and Prejudice, Ms Jones’ Diary was not my favourite read, and the film didn’t go down well either.

Hopefully you shouldn’t find me in an internet search as I haven’t done anything remotely famous like Helen.

But publishing books and remaining in the newspaper industry does make you more track-down able.

The last I heard from a former reporting colleague was when he wrote to me from California saying that he was working in a lab as a technician, and no longer considered himself a journalist. He doubted he’d return to our profession.

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