Form an orderly queue at the gate

In which I do like the British do and wait patiently with passport in hand.

Your exits are here…

Mrs G wants a holiday, don’t we all, and the thought of flying off to a Greek Island is very tempting (but not possible at the moment). To be able to jump in an aluminium tube and jet off somewhere warmer is now a common occurrence, but when I was younger it was a lot more exotic.

Sounding classier than it actually was, Britannia Airways was the package holiday charter aircraft of choice. If you were on a BY flight you were likely to be going to Spain or Greece. This was not a code you would really find on the boards at LAX or JFK. If you were on a Britannia flight you were going on a Thomson’s holiday (mainly due to the fact they were owned by the Thomson Group).

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Sunday Lie In : Toxic – The Chapin Sisters

In which I laze in bed while listening to something a bit more mellow.

What could be better than a Sunday morning in bed? As I have a toddler I’ll just settle for some good music:
Toxic
The Chapin Sisters.

For anyone else who may be up, or just lazing around you can find more music on my Sunday playlist:

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Epitomising good/bad teachers

In which I do my homework but cut class.

Student’s can be right pains in the proverbial, I was one of those awkward children that I’m sure teacher’s would get frustrated with. I could be very well behaved and eager to learn but then I was one of those mischievous souls that would get easily distracted. Something I am sure my managers at work would also probably agree with.

It wasn’t just my fault. As much as we complain that there are a minority of children that spoil it for the rest of the cohort there should also be the acknowledgement that, while the vast majority are excellent, there are also less than stellar educators in our midst. I had my fair share when I was at school but thankfully I also had some teachers who more than made up for it.

Scenes of my greatest crime, my GCSE Art grade

This is a post about them. It is my way of giving a belated thanks to all those who put up with me, and helped mould me into a useful member of society.
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Friday Hometime : Frontier Psychiatrist – The Avalanches

In which I celebrate the end of the work week with some music.

It is Friday and now the weekend is here let’s get it started with some music:
Frontier Psychiatrist
The Avalanches.

To carry on celebrating the end of the week check out the playlist below:

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Lunchtime Review : Homemade Crispy Duck

In which I try pulling meat with a fork

The Menu.

Ingredients: Some bits of duck leg and a really hot oven

Preparation: Cooking at home

Cost: Free, we were given the duck

Amuse-bouche

My sister would be jealous, she loves this stuff. So does Mrs G. In fact other than vegetarians I don’t know of anyone else who doesn’t like crispy duck. It’s one of those super-meats like bacon that are universally adored by those with functioning taste buds and an omnivorous diet.

There is a quirky fact about meat that as you cook it it goes from juicy (good) to dry (bad) but then something miraculous happens. It crisps up and becomes amazing. If you see any menu items with crispy in the description you know its going to be tasty. This doesn’t happen in the herbivore world, crispy apples are great but celery (despite it’s crispness) is rank.

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More than a spreadsheet

In which there are countless ways I’m not just a ‘numbers’ guy.

One of the most frustrating descriptions of my job is that I’m “The Numbers Guy”. We’ve just done a personality profile exercise when I wasn’t in the “You like spreadsheets” group there was a few incredulous looks. He uses Excel so he must love writing formulas and doing tables?

What if I told you the answer to that was “kinda”, of course I take some pleasure from a well presented set of stats but I do it because I’m good at it (and helps pay the bills) but very few people ever dream of being an analyst when they are little. Even now at the age of 34 (just) I don’t wake up excited about the prospect of firing up a new .xls file.

Instead of being a numbers person what keeps me sane is the fact that I can use this skill to be a more creative person.

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Lunchtime Review : Stromboli

In which I roll up bread and meat and cheese and create food heaven.

The Menu.

Ingredients: Bread and Meat

Preparation: Roll it up and bake it

Cost:Several pigs

Amuse-bouche

I love my traditional English Easter dinner, other than Christmas it is a chance to have a large family dinner with a pile of food. A great part about being married to an American-Italian-German is that food is an important part of Easter.

When we have partaken in dinner in NY I have been sent on epic quests just to locate a piece of meat. If I’d asked someone back home in England to drive 30 miles just to purchase a piece of meat they would call me crazy…however that meat, it tasted good. I mean real good. Even when my body started screaming at me that I’d eaten more pork than I should, I still needed to keep eating.

It wasn’t like I went into dinner on an empty stomach, beforehand I’d eaten some slices of Stromboli. If you’re sitting there with no idea what this is, as I didn’t before meeting my wife, it is possibly classified as humanity’s greatest gastronomical invention (along with garlic bread or pigs in blankets).

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Wednesday Whee : Don’t Falter – Mint Royale, Lauren Laverne

Hey, don’t falter / You know we ought to be together

Happy National Tap Dance Day!

Don’t Falter
Mint Royale, Lauren Laverne.

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Just a passing phase

In which I take an interest until it becomes hard work.

Change is great, it passes the time and relieves boredom. When life is calm and like a mill-pond I find myself getting agitated and look to see how I can stir things up.

This is why I am quite happy to try new things, there is the chance I will fail but I’m more interested in having something different to do. My life is littered with discarded hobbies, I find myself tripping over fads whenever I walk through the house.

I’m always on the lookout for the next pastime to occupy me, although considering the ones I have discarded I have no idea what they may be.

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Dreaming of doors

In which I close my eyes and sleep a dreamless sleep.

Dreams are not my thing. Not the awake kind of dreams, where I imagine myself winning the Ashes or being Prime Minister, I still have those. I’m talking about the kind you have when you sleep. I know plenty of people who are able to recall their dreams but I never seem to wake feeling like I’ve been on adventure in bed.

It is like I wake as soon as I fall asleep, with no feeling that I have been anything in between. Perchance to dream, that would be something to be. Or not to be ready for what dreams may come because my memories of them have shuffled my my mortal mind.

Yet should I slumber what might I dream of? Let’s start with a door.

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