Tuesday, November 29, 2005

Things I hate ...#1

There are a number of things that piss me off right at this moment, there are alot of people that piss me off right now - all for different reasons - and all at different levels of anger - however, this is the thing that is pissing me off the most.

I bought my faithful kettle when I first moved into my new flat - my first kettle in fact - and I was a little annoyed that it just wouldnt switch off once it reached the boil. So, like all humans, I adapter to the little twat, and made sure I was around for the bubbles coming up - and then proactively switched it off before it over boilded, caused a fire etc etc.

Some people would say, "Young Steve, you should have taken it back to the shop and got it exchanged!" and yes, maybe I should have, but I like my little kettle - mainly because of its quirks. I accepted the fact it was broken, and in exchange, got a lovely piping hot cup of tea - thats life.

However, for some freak force of nature - the damn thing has decided to switch itself off now. You think, lucky Steve, a kettle that was broken, thats now healed itself - NO!!!! What the damn thing does now, is switch itself off half way through boiling - hence Mr Warburton gets semi cold cups of tea in the mornings!

As with the kettle, tempted to exchange it - however, its my first kettle - and I like its little quirks - but hate the fact I get semi warm water out of it!

Saturday, November 26, 2005

Do you know the way to the New Windmill Ground ?

We had to look it up on a map - because it really is that long since we've been to a football match - the FA Vase game has been called off twice in a week, but the brakes returned in the Polymac Cup - playing Rocester.

Its been gradually getting colder over the last couple of weeks, so, being a hardened geordie, I've purchased a big coat, thermal leggings, thermal long sleaved top and a hat - which I have to admit, is very toasty when combined.

Once we got there, we enquired about Brakes Fluid - the beer brewed for the club, of which you can purchase a crate of 12 for 24 quid. I wasnt really sure - but at the end of the day, its alcohol, and its for the good of the club - so who am I to be force fed local beverages. The guy give us a nod and a wink and told us to come see him after the game and he would sort us out.

It was indeed a little nippy, however, to cheer me up a little, there was a nice female referee's assistant, who looked a little chilly. Of course, when there are two bloke lino's you dont think much about them, only to abuse them when the decisions are in/correct - but all of a sudden, was flooded with new questions such as;

Do they have special FA underwear they have to wear - or just a bulk standard thong type device?
Do clubs have to offer two changing rooms - just on the off chance that they have a female assistant ?
What her mobile phone number was ...

I personally thought she had a very good game, and not at all biased ... but at least she wasnt cockey like some of the ref's & lino's that I've seen this season. Sadly - didnt find out any of the three questions in my mind - damn it.

The game finished 4-1 in the end, with the Brakes going into the next round of the cup. Once again, I won the "guess the attendance" game - missing out on the total by 9 - which is pretty good going.

Brakes Fluid - Rocket fuel more like!

We picked up our Brakes Fluid after the game, John picked up his DVD of the Colchester game (I'm hoping he's gonna make me a copy) and headed home to warmth. Note to self - purchase some new gloves.

Meanwhile, else where in the Midland Alliance, Boldmere done us a fav by beating Stratford Town (2 points ahead of us in the league) 3-2

Sunday, November 20, 2005

Cold Canal....

.... but not frozen over!

Icy Plant looking into the Canal

Cold Canal - View of Bridge

Cold Canal with view of barge and mist thats covered leam for two days

Saturday - Cold! Official

Is it just me, or is there a little bit of a nip in the air ? Just all a little scary really isnt it ? Last week, it was t-shirt weather (well for me anyhow) and now, its like the big freeze. Its well confused my tree and my plants - and looks like its going to kill them badly. My tree, up until Friday still had blossom, now, its covered in ice.

Icy plant, with swan in background - aww

Anyhooo, after last nights happy friday, I woke up at 11:15 - and John had suggested that we were going to leave for Biddulp at 11:30. So, with a hangover, managed to get ready in 10 mins flat - only to have an MSN from Debbie, and a text from John saying the game had been called off due to a frozen pitch. Typical - so decided to head into town after some breakfast, only to find that the whole town was covered in icy mist, got a few random things - including a hat from fatface and a baked potato cooking device - as well as Eutythmics Ultimate Collection & Beastie Boys Solid Gold Hits.

Got back, defrosted and "watched" sky sports centre and the Chelsea v Newcastle result come in - loosing 3-0 - damn cheeky cockney barrow boys!

Anyhoo, I sent Blunty a text to find out if he wanted some beverages and maybe some food - so we arranged to meet in the Jug, where we had a quick one - then shivered towards Millenium where we had a nice meal - although it was a little subzero in the restaurant. Once the meal finished, we hiked up to the Lounge where we indulged in rum based cocktails and thawed out. Strangely enough, when we left the Lounge - it was a lil bit warmed - and the rum based drink must have got into our blood system.

We had a couple in the Well, well, we had a large amount to drink in the Well, and chatted with the locals and barstaff - and it was a little bit too quiet for my liking - maybe it was the weather. I chatted to Neil who was arranging the Rock / Metal night downstairs - and managed to name three tracks in a row taht was being played. He give me a stamp for free entry into the Rock night if we fancied it - borrowed his stamp, stamped my other hand and give Blunty an imprint - incase he wanted to come down.

We moved from Morgan Spiced Rum to Sailor Jerry's rum - on the first taste - Blunty screamed "Its like Christmas, in a drink!!" I asked what he meant, and he listed off about 5 things which are important to Christmas - I tasted it, and yes, its like a Christmas Rush. After 6 more of the Double Christmas drinks - we both turned to each other with blurry eyes and announced that we needed to go our seperate ways and retire to bed. We did that and disappeared into the Winter mist.

I got back home and the two swans were on the canal, so decided to feed them - It was nice, peaceful and calm - cold as the coldest day you can imagine. After giving them a loaf of bread between the two and had a conversation with them, I returned to my flat and entered my rum based coma.

Friday, November 18, 2005

Jacuzzi Experiences

I'm a caring sharing kind of person - and thought I would share my experience with you. Just randomly in the jacuzzi the other day when I placed my stomach over the middle water shoot. I placed my hand on my stomach and it felt like there was nothing there.
I shared this idea with Debbie - and she agrees its certainly an experience to savour.
More random experiences to follow!

Preplanned Happy Friday

Friday returns to us, almost as quickly as I got over last weeks hangover - however this week, we've made a few suggestions of what we'd like to do tonight. I'm meeting Debbie in the gym after work - with a view to at least getting a little bit healthy and balancing the scales of getting ratarsed tonight and trying to get up at a decent time tomorrow.
We're hoping to meet in Lounge for Happy Friday cocktails - all Spiced Rum based of course - then head towards the Leam Bar & Grill - if we dont need a booking.
Then probably head towards The Well or Jug and Jester for a bottle of wine .. mmm!
Luckily John and Debbie are driving to the football tomorrow - so means I can get a little drunk and chill and relax. Hope there is a foxy single lass out there tonight - could do with a lil bit of romance in my life right now.

Thursday, November 17, 2005

Tale of two days - and a fine right foot touch

Getting back to the footballing way of thinking, its nice to know after 4 games of a dry footballing spell, I managed to score twice over 2 days - today of all things scoring our team's first goal Shame that we lost something like 9-2 due to shambolic defending and a lad going home because he thought he broke his finger .
Be interesting times of fair weather players, now its getting a little nippy - this time last year, all the students went missing til april, because they couldnt hack the cold weather. GAYS, thats what I say!

Simple words, simple things

It's amazing what a few words can do to pick you up and make you feel better - in the space of 3 days - not only have I been asked out for a drink - and wait for it and be seated - by a ... female. Not only that, but its refreshing to be told that you look nice and you've lost weight. Shame I had to go spoil it all by calling her a wench - whoops.

Tuesday, November 15, 2005

Where did you get that .. er ... coat!

I dont mind the rain, I dont mind the cold and I certainly dont mind the rain. So much so, that I prefer walking around town in the autumn weather, and most of this stems from my old job in ASDA when I worked in the frozen food department. Walking around town, when its wet and cold is class, mainly because everyone else cant be arsed, or standing in doorways trying to keep out the way - thus, pavements and streets are clear.

Anyhooo, after last Tuesdays Birmingham Cup exploits where I got cold wet and sodden through, I decided to make a decision - to buy a big winter coat, for the first time in 12 years. I wanted to before the Saturday League game at the New Windmill, so popped into town and bought a funky thick coat from GAP.

Its a nice funky 3 way coat - not to say, when you walk, it goes three ways - but you can take the inner layer out and wear either the layer. It also comes with a nice funky furry hood too. Needless to say, after paying alot of money for it, I was disappointed not to get soaked on Saturday and get my money out of it - DAMN YOU MOTHER NATURE!!!

Sunday, November 13, 2005

Look to the Darkside

Pretty scary, but I was looking at my phone gallery of photos that I've taken over the last couple of weeks - and we must have been trigger happy lastnight when I found this photo of Blunty - or the emperor from Starwars.

Captain Bluntarian - using the force to get free drinks.

Happy Birthday Jess!

~~ Happy 21st Birthday Jess! ~~

Happy Birthday MC!

I knew it was going to be Chaos from the start, and being with Captain Bluntarian - the leader of Chaos - I knew it was going to get messy. Thats a story for later on, however, myself John, Debbie and virgin brakes attendee, Tom, went to to the New Windmill Ground to watch Leam FC play Quorn. The ground was a little more packed than the last league game we played (around 1924 was the year, I believe) and it was kind of expected after the FA Cup run we had up until last week. The final score was 1-1 and we headed off back to town to catch the England "friendly" against the Argies - only to be disturbed by the Brake's Chairman (Sir Mick) who asked if I could drive out of the exitting queue - and point my headlights into their "electrical garage" where a fuse had gone ... certainly not a Premiership moment - but its always good to help the club out in small ways where possible.

We got back to town and went our seperate ways, knowing it was MC's birthday and arranging to meet blunty - I knew I needed food - so headed to Mamma's for some "easy food" - decided to watch the 2nd half of the England game at home and chill before I went out. After shower, dressed up etc, I met Blunty in the Lounge for a beverage before heading to the Sausage. We noticed some cocktail menu's on the table to which we ordered one - and the one I had was like rocket fuel - so we got another - in between that, Nomes and Andy turned up to meet us.

By the time we got to the Sausage, I already had 3 strong drinks inside me and entered the pub with the widest grin in the world. We continued drinking with the Cuban Rum theme and got a little merrier towards the end (and Tequela), where time flew and we got kicked out. In between, picking up the black straws for the drinks - and we all know what that means - fake microphone headsets, and doormen Blunty and Stefan.

We dithered around outside the sausage for a while, before we hit Robbins Well, where for some reason, I thought if I said to the bar staff, "Did I tell you, You have beautiful eyes?" I would get free drinks. This was the basis for the convo for most of the night, where it turned into, "Did I tell you, your eyes remind me of Hailey's Comet?" and "Did I tell you, your eyes remind me of shooting stars". Somehow, this actually did work - where I came out with vouchers for free "Sailor Jerry's rum". We once again, used our magic key to the Robbins well, and promptly took to the end of the bar, while people were getting chucked out at drinking up time - only to have a chat with the barstaff about the best place to "pull" females.

We came to the conclusion, there are about 3 sets of people in the world - guys who can pull in pubs, supermarkets - or those who just dont try - but sometimes get lucky. The barmaids came to the conclusion that the flower or fresh veg department of the supermarket is the best place to pull - needless to say, I've polished my nectar card and heading up there this week to do some flower and carrot shopping. John, Debbie and Gav left at this point, allowing blunty and I to continue chatting and talking bollocks, allowing me to sing further Jaheebus songs (Michael row the boat to shore, and, He's got the whole world in his hands". Blunty went off to plat table football with someone who looked scary and someone else who looked like Jaheebus, so left him to it, while I contined to woo the barstaff with my "you have pretty eyes, can I have free drinks" chat up line.

Returned home, alone, yet again (awww) around noneo'clock to which, I entered my rum based coma - only to pass loads of people on the streets of Leamington dressed up in school uniforms - so so confusing!

Saturday, November 12, 2005

Sign of geting old

You know how it is ... when you were at school, and someone said to you, "the best days of your life are at school" and you chuckled and laughed in their face - and thought, as soon as you get a job, then gooooodbye school. I done that many years ago, now, I feel old and I'm on the other side of the border having gone beyond passport control.

A combination of things have wound me up this week, I dont know if its a case of playing Civ4 til 2 in the morning a couple of nights, or just things have come to a head .. but I really do think, school is a better option. Maybe I should become a teacher or something, but the point is, I'm baby sitting people at work who should know better. I wont mention who I work from, although people from work read this - however, the simple crap you have to deal with, just stresses me out. Dealing with contractors (aka - get paid by the hour and get alot of money, while permies grin and shrug shoulders) who are battling with themselves. Its not an agest thing to say, but im probably the youngest in the team, ish, and the team leader, yet, you have people twice my age minus a couple of years, being so - well, unprofessional.

Needless to say, when Debbie asked if I wanted to go to the gym for a swim and sauna, I jumped at the chance to get out of working - and it happened. Walking up in the rain, I listened to El Presidente - that I bought of Itumes - that I've slowly got into. I done my 15 min run and joined Debbie in the pool. We had a couple of lengths swim and chilled in the sauna and jacuzzi etc - discussed plans for tonight and things - while attractive women came and went.

Anyhooo, Debbie, MC and I arranged to get to TJs for a cocktail at happyhour, while it appears John and "crew" were on an all day session. We had blue lagoons and chinwagged, and then met the rest in Millenium Curry House for a meal, went onto Jug and Jester for a couple of bottles of wine, where we had fun, laughed and talked about the colchester v leamington fc game.

Needless to say, we went our different directions and I came home, drinking MSR...

Special thanks to someone who was there when I needed a reply - thanks!

Tuesday, November 08, 2005

Josh Blake saved my life!

As Soul to Soul sing ... Back to Life, Back to Reality - and in what better way to return to reality - than high levels of wind, and it raining - quite litterally - cats and dogs. However, thankfully, it didnt "shit it down" as John put it earlier. Yes, for once, The Brakes returned to the Windmill Game, for the first time in - well I cant even remember - and played Solihul in the 3rd Round of the Birmingham Senior Cup. We were all hoping that the heavy defeat against Colchester (9-1) didnt bring the team down.

It was going to be interesting to see how many of the 1200 travelling Leam fans would turn up - even on a cold wet dank November night - and indeed, we guessed, with John picking 250, and I picking 314 - I was 4 out again - yay - and indeed like Rainman.

Anyhooo, by halftime, I was completely drenched through, feeling the jeans sticking to the back of my legs, so by half time and 1-1, we got a hot drink and stood under the roof for the 2nd half. Debbie turned up just after half time and wondered why we were stood there. By that time, my legs had failed to work and I thought I was going to die. Full time was 1-1, so extra time was being called - I was close to loosing the feeling in my eyes and mouth when we were reaching full time of extra time - thankfully Josh Blake (Joshy's Giants) put on in the back of the net, making it 3-2 to the Brakes. Any form of penalties would have taken me towards flatlining - so indeed, the Brakes saved my life and the ability to do my job (DAMN IT!)

I got home, had the hottest shower in the world (Temperature, not due to a woman - because I dont have a girlfriend!!) and switched the heating on - continued Civilization 4 with Rich while supping a hot cup of tea.

Sunday, November 06, 2005

Cannonball run :: Colchester -> Leam

Gav kindly gave us a lift to the hotel where I left the car, we said our goodbyes (only to arrange to meet him in Leam next saturday for MCs 30th birthday) and after abusing the hotel's good nature & facilities once again, we were on our way up north. This time, we managed to avoid the M25 and M1 - and went the quicker route - listening to Radio 5 Live and 606 with Alan Green. At one point he started mocking the Leamington game, trying to get people to phone up and explain what went on - then someone did - and they tried explaining to Mr Green that it was indeed a fantastic game, and it didnt matter about the result in the end.

Anyhooo, we made it back into Leam around 8.15pm - so managed to get a Pizza from Mamma's across the road and got showered and changed - ready to meet up with Rich. We ended up going down the Well for a couple of beers to catch up and have a sociable one - where Rich didnt feel too well. Anyhooo, after a bottle and a half of wine later - we retired back to our abodes. Rich must have gone to bed, I continued drinking some beverage (trying to catch up with my lack of) and tried Civilization IV out. I tried version 3 a while back as a demo, and Rich had recommended this as a strategy game - so bought the game before we went to Colchester.

Sticking it on easy level - I managed to get pretty far, although one of the reasons I did get it - was to try the multi-player version and get an alliance together.

Anyhow, a fantastic weekend, lets just hope Chase Town dont get a mauling tomorrow afternoon

The Brakes :: Cup Final

The morning of the big day ... It wasnt down to not being able to sleep through tenstion, mainly because of some high powered industrial lights outside my hotel window. I woke up around 7am to someone sweeping the streets, and somehow - strangely enough, couldnt get back to sleep. I managed to get down to breakfast for around 8am, had more GTA 4 PSP fun - then I was joined by John, then 2 mins later by Debbie. We had our Full English Breakfast* chatted, discussed plans for the day, and headed to get checked out - well, in between watching Dic and Dom in Da Bungalow. First time I've watched this, and it was a complete scream - and I think it might change my view on missing Saturday mornings by default.

We had a wander into town, look around shops and see where we are compared to the ground, it was a little scary running up to the game, as everyone I spoke too, they've been to Colchester and this is my first attempt - even my mum who apparently got lost - somehow. We managed to find a nice looking coffee house, when Gav (a friend who used to live in leam - went to africa, build stuff, then moved back home to essex after giving his job up) called to arrange to meet us to get to the ground.

Strangely enough, this all went to plan, we got to the ground, inbetween getting abusive text messages from students calling me a "gaylord" for being in the Leamington Courier.

I bumped into and said hello to more people at the ground, than I would have in Leam - it was a good laugh - Leam were very vocal from the off - and you reckon, if the sun is in the right direction, the light is looking at the cat correctly, someone bought a box of tic tacs with 2 more tacs than it should and colchester had a bad day - we could get something out of it. We certainly started slowly - and by half time - we were 2-0 down. Leam Fans were still vocal - and way out singing the Colchester fans, regardless of taunts. The Manager, "Caddsy" even waved during his tactic rant when Leam fans were singing, 'Caddsy Caddsy give us a wave' - which in a way - shows that even tho everyone assumed a thumping, its still a family club, and at the end of the day, everyone was expecting a football lesson.

Everytime Colchester scored - Leam Fans came back with the "we're gonna win X - X+1" even wnen it eventually did get to 9-1. We even discussed on the way back that Leam didnt deserve to get beatend 9-1 - I reckon, in my opinion 4-1 would have been a better score line - but listening to 5live - we came to the conclusion if we lost 2-1 - it would have been lost under the media limelight.

Anyhoo - chats of the day

"are you pleased we filled your ground"

"Caddsy Caddsy give us a wave"

"we're all going to Wembley" (after 9-1 and 2 mins of injury time)

"theres only one Bill Bailey" - to the steward who looked a bad version of Bill Bailey

"we're gonna win 10-9"

FA Cup Dream is over ... for this season.!

Friday, November 04, 2005

The Magic of the Cup Roadshow II

Most of this week has been taken up with planning the trip to colchester - and I do have to admit, the excitement has taken over my life. I've been a life long Newcastle fan, yet, for some strange reason, I've never been so excited about a game. The Newcastle v Sunderland game could reach that level - however, its all based on Newcastel winning, Sunderland winning / or getting a draw.

I've always liked the FA cup, the oldest cup competition ever in football, and its good in my opinion to be involved so early in the stages, rather than waiting til the 3rd round when Newcastle get in. I do love my Newcastle related football - when I was working in America in Jan, Rich kindly hooked up his webcam and mic up to his TV and I watched Newcastle v Yeading over MSN - it wasnt good - but it was better than watching baseball - funnily enough.

Anyhooo, back to the story, John and Debbie went to Holbeach last saturday near Lincoln while I was on my flu death bed, and I think they came to the conclusion that my original idea of going down Friday night was a good idea. So come Monday, I booked two rooms at the Riverside Hotel, and we set off approx 4.40pm.

Mainly thanks do some planning arrangements, we arrived in Colchester roughly 4 hours lately, with me a little tired at the wheel. At the hotel, they had two rooms available, one double bedded room, one twin single room - obviously John and Debbie being together, it was suggested they took the double room, and I took the twin room. Once we got checked in, we ended up on one of the main streets heading towards a curry house - having a very tasty meal, beer and wander towards a "themed" pub the other side of the river to the hotel.

Time was pressing on, and I think ALL three of us NEEDED alcohol - so we took to the bar in the "themed" pub of schools. AKA - an excuse for the female barstaff to dress up in school uniforms. We asked when they were gonna call last orders, which turned out to be 11pm - however at around 10:30 stools were being piled and tables were being wiped. At 11pm, you get the distint feeling, that they wanted everyone out - so we give up - and left, me leaving 1/2 a glass of wine - NOOOO!

Not like any normal friday, I was in bed, by 11:45 semi sober ready for sleep - getting text's from my ex - wondering why I look scary in the Leamington Courier's FA Cup Special section.

Played 5 mins of GTA Liberty Stories on the PSP before "trying" to get some sleep - that didnt work