The Anonymous Widower

An Olympic Boost For Rare British Dogs

This article in the Independent suggests that those rarer British dog breeds like the English Setter have had a boost in 2012.

And the Olympics could be the reason!

I see a couple of English setters round here and they really are the friendliest of dogs. We also had two, when our children were in their teens and you rarely find one, that can’t get on extremely well with everybody and especially children.  They also don’t shed hair like other breeds, I could name.

January 25, 2013 Posted by | News, World | , | 1 Comment

The Tragic Fallout Of Doping Cheats

After the mega-cheat, Lance Armstrong’s theatrical performance, last night, Nicole Cooke this morning made an impassioned plea for the victims of  those, like the drug-fuelled Texan. She said, that she had lost medals because others cheated by doping when competing against her.

I remember the 1960s, when athletics was ruined by the Soviet Block, who took everything that a chemist could devise. Look at the career of our greatest-ever female sprinter; Kathy Smallwood-Cook, who  would be in a totally different league, if competition had been fair and square. It has always puzzled me, how Mary Peters ever won that pentathlon gold in the 1972 Munich Olympics.  If you look at the women’s athletics results at that games, few medallists are not from the Soviet Block. There are a few West German medals, but then they had home advantage and London 2012 showed how that helps drammatically. I do remember watching that pentathlon, with C on a terrible black and white television,  when Mary Peters, was almost willed over the high jump bar by masses of British troops based in Germany, who somehow had got tickets.

Where would the careers of some retired clean athletes be, if they had competed fair and square?

Cheats like Armstrong have a lot to answer for! He should be prosecuted for fraud and perhaps asked to spend some time in a nice cosy Texas jail.

January 18, 2013 Posted by | News, Sport | , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Two Gold Post Boxes In Leeds

I took this picture in Leeds on Saturday.

Two Gold Post Boxes In Leeds

Two Gold Post Boxes In Leeds

Someone must have won a gold medal at the Olympics. But then Yorkshire did better than Australia!

December 19, 2012 Posted by | Sport, World | , , | Leave a comment

The Olympics Come In £377 million Under Budget

This has just been announced and you can read about it here in the Independent.

Various commentators and politicians have said that this is all down to good project management.

Sadly, there is no credit given to those that started the project management software revolution in the 1970s. It is truly an unheralded mainly-British software development, of which I played a small part.

October 23, 2012 Posted by | Computing, News | , , , | Leave a comment

And Some Think London’s Got Traffic Problems!

I just read this piece on the BBC web site about a legal challenge to a new bus lane in Delhi.

I think it is interesting to look at how well London survived the Olympics. A lot of the road network was closed down and people found better ways to work or get to work. I started referring to buses as Big Red Taxis.

Since the end of the Olympics, you’d think road traffic would have got back to previous levels.  I’m not sure, but when I walk up the Balls Pond Road at rush hour, it may be busy, but not as bad as I remember before the Olympics. The only really bad times are when Arsenal are at home, as a large number of people still drive to one of the easiest stadia in the country to get to by public transport.

I would love to see some properly collected figures on traffic in Central London. Do they publish the amount of money raised by the Congestion Charge? I can’t seem to find any recent results.  They should publish the takings on a regular basis. Probably daily!

October 15, 2012 Posted by | News, Sport, Travel | , , , , | 4 Comments

Andy Murray’s Balls

They’ve just announced that the tennis balls Andy Murray used at the Olympics will be auctioned along with lots more Olympic memorabilia. The Sun has the story here, together with a beach volleyball picture. The reason for the picture is that a rake used in the women’s final sold for £261.

September 28, 2012 Posted by | News, Sport | | Leave a comment

Marshgate Lane Revealed

This is the first time, I’ve been on Pudding Mill Lane station and could get a reasonably clear view of where Marshgate Lane goes under the Greenway and the Northern Outfall Sewer into the Olympic Park.

Marsh Gate Lane Revealed

As I said here, it was a complicated and expensive job.  Also,because of European Union rules, it had to be open to all EU companies. It was a fixed price contract and it was won by the Germans.  Rumours abound that Marshgate Lane lived up to its name and they didn’t make the profit they expected.

September 18, 2012 Posted by | Sport | , , | Leave a comment

The First Legacy Venue Opens

I was born in Enfield and spent the first fifteen or so years of my life in Cockfosters, which in those days had a Hertfordshire postal address.

A couple of times, I cycled down to the Lea Valley to do a bit of fishing, although I wasn’t that good or keen. I also had three summer jobs at Brimsdown on the Lea, working for Enfield Rolling Mills. Incidentally, that job came because my father just phoned up John Grimston, the Earl of Verulam, and asked if they had a job for a sixteen-year-old, interested in electronics, in the company, where he was Chairman. The company was the biggest customer for my father’s printing business. I have a feeling that I have inherited my father’s nothing-is-impossible gene.

So yesterday, I was rather pleased to read that the first of the legacy venues has opened after the Olympics, on that river, which was part of my formative years.  The Lea Valley White Water Centre, where I watched the canoeing, is now open and will be expanded. Who’d have thought there’d be white water sports in the mountains of Hertfordshire?

I think it just goes to show, you just have to have enough imagination.

September 12, 2012 Posted by | Sport | , , , | Leave a comment

Where Now Lord Coe?

The Times today, has a leader which praises Lord Coe for the work he did in getting the Olympics to London and making it a success.

I can remember sitting with C and listening to his speech in Singapore that won us the Olympics in the first place. As a barrister, she said it was the finest plea in mitigation she had ever heard, as it was thought at the time, that we would lose to Paris.

The Times leader also poses what Lord Coe should do next.

I only think, that whatever he does, he’ll make a success of it!

September 11, 2012 Posted by | Sport | , | 2 Comments

Cyclehoops

I hadn’t heard of Cyclehoop until I saw a piece about how they have got a large export order from Vancouver, on the strength of their presence at the Olympics.

I like them, as hopefully, they’ll tidy up bikes on the streets and we’ll get less clutter that I’ll walk into.  Admittedly, I do it less now, as my eyesight may not be perfect, but I’ve learned how to use it properly.

One thing I like about the design is that they are compact and can be very bright, so they aren’t among that large class of street furniture you trip over.

I’ll be looking out for some in use.

On another matter, their web site is very professional.

They also fulfil my theory, that there are many ways to redesign what we already have.

Looking at the gallery on the web site, you see too that it’s not a one-product company. They’re more a solutions company, that you go to when you want to park any number of bikes, from one to several thousands.

September 9, 2012 Posted by | Travel | , , , , , | 4 Comments

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