Wednesday 30 January 2019

Three things challenge. 1019 #30

When I first saw the three choices of word for the three things challenge I thought this would be a doddle for I am into the forties and how easy for the first word bomb. Immediately the image of Barnes Wallace and his amazing invention of the bouncing bomb which destroyed the German dams in World War Two.

Very briefly for those who don't know the bomb was spun backwards and dropped to skim across the surface of the water and sink when it hit the dam to explode rather as a depth charge and destroy the dam.

This was achieved very successfully by the men of 617 Squadron, known later as the Dam Busters although at considerable cost to planes and men. 

 Image result for Lancaster bomber and bouncing bomb

Moving swiftly on again the second word triggered an image of General Montgomery who fought in the desert of North Africa and beat the German General Erwin Rommel.

Image result for WW2 british tanks in North Africa

Finally when I first looked at the choice of words I was going to give this challenge a miss until, through the wonders of a Google search I came up with the rather splendid character Jasper Beardly who appears in the Simpsons cartoon. 

Yet again through the wonders of the interweb, job done. You have to admit it's so much easier than the old days when this would have taken days of research in the local library.

Saturday 26 January 2019

3TC Challenge today's words are Sail Chair and Magnetite.

I have been very busy today uploading my latest children's book to Amazon which always takes hours as my computer skills are virtually non existent which meant I was going to give this challenge a miss but then suddenly inspiration came to me.

This will be a very quick post as I'm "bloody knackered" so I will fill the gaps with images and sail through this challenge starting with an image from my latest book Norman the pirate which as you can see covers the first word, sail.

Well it is a picture of pirates who sail upon the high seas, together with a cheap plug for my book, shameless I know.

Moving swiftly on I would have written more but due to my exhaustion from my days labours I have had to have a rest on the nearest chair available which unfortunately was a metal one, very attractive but unfortunately....

I had forgotten to remove the magnetite which I had inadvertently placed in my trouser pockets when playing super hero's with my young grandchildren. As you obviously know magnetite has a very strong magnetic attraction so I was unable to get up from the bench so this will have to be the end of this post for today.

Thursday 24 January 2019

Philosophy. hedgehog and 1999. 3TC Challenge.

I am somewhat perplexed by today’s Three Things Challenge and am wondering if there is a philosophy in the inclusion of the word hedgehog and the year 1999.

As someone who has never studied philosophy, I can tell you that from my point of view I have absolutely no idea, in fact what I know about philosophy could be written on the back of a postage stamp and still have room to spare.

There are some days when I am forced to wonder whether whoever chooses the three things is trying to find subjects that are stimulating and invigorating, designed to bring out the best in us or whether sometimes they are just being bloody minded?

Continuing with the next subject that of hedgehog, I have done hours of research on the subject and can inform you that rather surprisingly there are 17 species of hedgehog worldwide. There are none native to Australia and rather sadly there are no living species native to the Americas, (the extinct genus Amphechinus was once present in North America. I imagine its extinction may be explained by the American habit of going hunting and indiscriminately shooting anything that moves.

Finally, yet more research has revealed some interesting facts about the year 1999, firstly the Euro currency was introduced in Europe, luckily Great Britain chose to remain with the good old pound.

The minimum wage was introduced in Great Britain at £3.60 per hour for over 21 and £3.00 per hour for under 21, compared to that people today don’t know how lucky they are!

Rouge trader Nick Leeson returned home to England from Singapore, nearly four years after he was jailed there after his illegal dealings which led to the collapse of Barings Bank with losses of £850 million.

There were, of course the inevitable deaths some of which were;

Stanley Kubrick, film director famous for A Clockwork Orange.

The actors Oliver Reed and Dirk Bogart both famous in their own ways.

Christopher Cockerell, inventor of the hovercraft.

David Sutch, known as Screaming Lord Sutch, musician and founder of the rather wonderful Official Monster Raving Looney Party sadly committed suicide.

Alan Clark, character and classic car enthusiast and Conservative Member of Parliament.

The rather wonderful and not widely known tenor singer from Northern Ireland Josef Locke.

Desmond Llewelyn, actor and Q in the James Bond films.

Here endeth my attempt at today’s Three Things Challenge and who better to end on than Quentin Crisp, writer, raconteur and famous homosexual, the subject of the rather splendid film, The Naked Civil Servant.

Monday 21 January 2019

3TC Three Things Challenge.

The three words chosen for today's Three Things Challenge are Superhero, Washing machine and Pizza.

This will be quite a short post as I have been quite busy commenting and communicating with other bloggers today which has been good from the point of view that my brain is in fairly active mode and having thought of this post almost as soon as I'd seen it leaves me a little tired and looking forward to watching some fairly inane television where too much brain activity will not be required.

Hot off the press a tragic accident has occurred in a pizza restaurant leaving many of the customers trapped in a blazing inferno.

Unfortunately the local superhero is unable to attend as his underpants which for some strange reason he always wears on the outside of his costume.........

are still in the washing machine being washed by his mother!

Holly cow!

Sunday 20 January 2019


I am writing this for two reasons, firstly in response to the Fandango FOWC which theoretically is a one word challenge but I'm rather wondering if I can use two, I wish to interrupt the blogging conversation currently going on and to that end, I interject; "cough, cough."

My second reason for this post is to say "excuse me, I'm here please notice me, please read my blog!"

Usually I refer to myself as a Luddite especially where computers are concerned but I am also an old dog who is trying to learn new tricks, as long as it's not done too quickly.

I have recently come across the blog site called THIS, THAT, AND THE OTHER  and KEEP IT ALIVE and THE HAUNTED WORDSMITH and A GUY CALLED BLOKE which I'm led to believe are great blogs from which to learn.

Perhaps one of my problems is that I have two blogs which are on different platforms, one on Wordpress and one on Blogger, on the other hand it could be helping, you see how knowledgeable I am on this subject.

Having just written a post on my other blog and started to read some hints and tips for blogging from SALTED CARAMEL I'm just going to return to her blog and do some reading.

I hope "cough, cough," caught your attention and fulfilled the criteria for the Fandango FOWC.

Sunday 13 January 2019


Many years ago when I was an actor I saw an advertisement for actors to write and act in a short film for The London College of Communication which was at The Elephant and Castle  in London.

As usual with student films I never received a copy of the finished film which was a shame as I thought it might be quite good as a finished production.

Here is the script for said film which I thought would be appropriate for the Just Jot It January word prompt of undiscovered. Shame I couldn't attach the finished film!


My name's Joe Wells and I'm here to confess, I'm here to confess to a murder.

Thirty years ago I killed a man, I killed the man who killed my daughter Susan.

When she was born she was the most beautiful baby in the world, I loved her to death and she grew into the most wonderful child.

Then when she was fifteen she started going off the rails, obviously it was drugs but we were so naive we thought she was just a stroppy teenager.

It's amazing how quickly she went downhill, form model student to heroine addict in a year and a half.

Her mother and I both tried to get her clean but it was too late, by that time she was gone from us both mentally and physically.

She moved into a squat with her boyfriend who was also her dealer and that was the last we ever saw of her.

The police called on 14th November to say she'd died of an overdose and we buried her on 4th December, later there was an inquest with the inevitable outcome, they were never going to call it murder were they.

My wife took it better than me, but I just couldn't let it go, I stalked that little bastard Chris for months, then one night I got my chance.

It was dark he was alone, no CCTV everywhere in those days, I grabbed a spade from my van and smashed his head in, I put him in a body bag shoved him in the van and drove to work.

The minute I got there I put him in the incinerator, I changed into my work clothes and put the ones I had been wearing into the incinerator too.

When it was over I took the ashes and the spade I'd used and put them in the bottom of a grave we'd dug for a funeral the next day, I covered them with soil and came home.

I felt no guilt whatsoever, I never have.


The choice of word for the FOWC Fandango's One Word Challenge is Inane which in itself is not the most stimulating word in the dictionary as by definition it is "lacking sense or meaning."

This is either a very clever choice of word or clearly a mistake, leaving one with two choices, to give up immediately or persevere against all the odds and produce something worthy of a Nobel Prize for Literature, not easy when the word itself by definition "lacks sense or meaning."

At this point I have to admit this word has me stumped and would like to suggest an alternative, "discombobulated" for that is how I'm feeling at the moment and yet at first sight it seemed such a promising word.

I don't know how other writers tackle these One Word Challenges but I usually have an idea in my mind fairly quickly as to what to write, or sometimes if nothing comes I am quite happy to walk away and take part another day.

Unfortunately, for this word I did have an idea almost instantaneously but I didn't want to write a tirade on all the inane things that modern life throws up and leaves me lost for words, I was hoping for something far more creative to flash into my head, but no luck. I am devoid of creative ideas!

I am therefore left with this rather inane list of things which lack sense or meaning.

Speed limits which can never be right 24 hours a day 7 days a week.

Stupid computer games played by addicted adults and children.

People who assume electric cars are green.


Riots in the streets of Paris.

Vast numbers of television channels, most of which are rubbish.

The dustman not collecting during Christmas week.

I'd better stop now before this post just becomes a tirade against modern life, which will never win a Nobel Prize for Literature in a million years!

Sunday 6 January 2019

FOWC. The Fandango One Word Challenge, todays word is; Underdog.

I shall be very brief today as I have only just finished a post on my other blog, so if you think this post is a little short may I suggest you go and read the other one.

Now, down to business with today's word which is underdog which I'm guessing will mostly consist of the story that the origin of the phrase which comes from dog fighting where there was a winner and a looser, hence top dog and underdog and indeed this is one of the descriptions of the word.

However I prefer the other version which comes from the days when men would saw large trees lengthwise before the advent of any form of power saws. This was done by digging a large pit and placing men with a long saw with handles each end, one above and one below who would saw the tree lengthwise.

It was far easier for the man on top as he puts in less effort for the same result, hence he was known as the top dog and he wasn't covered in sawdust like the unfortunate underdog who was underneath.

Image result for underdog origin 

Saturday 5 January 2019

FOWC Challenge, today's word is WALL.

When I saw today's choice of word for the One Word Challenge my first thought was of the rather ridiculous Mr Donald Trump and his ludicrous scheme to build a wall to keep the Mexicans out of America. 

It put me in mind of the World War Two story of the prison of war escape known as "The Great Escape" where the captive soldiers dug three tunnels, Tom, Dick and Harry to escape under the wire fence.

I may be wrong but I rather imagine that should the wall be built that the Mexicans and whoever is helping to traffic them will have sufficient imagination to either tunnel under or climb over whatever barrier is erected rather like the people of East Berlin when the Berlin Wall was first erected.

My next thought was of The Great Wall of China, allegedly the only man made structure which can be seen from space.


Moving on and you may be following my train of thought, I came up with Pink Floyd and "Another brick in the wall," the lyrics of which are;

Image result for pink floyd another brick in the wall
                         We don't need no education
                         We don't need no thought control
                         No dark sarcasm in the classroom
                         Teachers leave them kids alone
                         Hey, teachers, leave them kids alone
                         All in all it's just another brick in the wall
                         All in all you're just another brick in the wall

Well I'm not at all sure we should be encouraging children to think 
they need no education!

As they used to say on the news, "and finally." The splendid song "So Strong" by Labi Siffre which I think qualifies to be included in this post even though it mentions wall in the plural.

The higher you build your barriers
The taller I become
The farther you take my rights away
The faster I will run
You can deny me
You can decide to turn your face away
No matter, cos there's....

Something inside so strong
I know that I can make it
Tho' you're doing me wrong, so wrong
You thought that my pride was gone
Oh no, something inside so strong
Oh oh oh oh oh something inside so strong

The more you refuse to hear my voice
The louder I will sing
You hide behind walls of Jericho
Your lies will come tumbling
Deny my place in time
You squander wealth that's mine
My light will shine so brightly
It will blind you
Cos there's......

Something inside so strong
I know that I can make it
Tho' you're doing me wrong, so wrong
You thought that my pride was gone
Oh no, something inside so strong
Oh oh oh oh oh something inside so strong

Friday 4 January 2019

Another Three Things Challenge.

As some of you may know I write illustrated children’s story books which are available on Amazon two of which are here to give you a rough idea of the wonderful illustrations which help to give life to these stories which are written for 5 to 8 year old children.

Thursday 3 January 2019

Three Things Challenge.

I’m taking part in the Three Things Challenge and today's three things to write about are River, Sunset and Safe, all very easy there then!

When first looking at the choice of words, one starts to think in the order they are presented to one, however I think the safe option might be to start from the other end. So far, so good.

It would be easy for me now to say; I am writing this looking out of the window at the most beautiful sunset but it would be a complete untruth, is that cheating?

Finally, as they say in Cockney rhyming slang, I am completely up the Swanne (river) as I can think of nothing to write on the subject of river.

Clearly this challenge is much harder than it looks!

Tuesday 1 January 2019


It has been a few days since I posted on this site but prompted by another blog called either This, that and the other, or Fandango, I am unsure as to which blog is prompting me to write which is rather fortuitous as the FOWC (Fandangos one word challenge) is enigma which pretty much sums up most of the things I attempt to do on the interweb.

My immediate thought when presented with the word Enigma was to think of the wartime code breaking establishment called Bletchley Park which was a stately home near Milton Keyes, Buckinghamshire in England during the second world war.

The Germans had a machine called Enigma which could change a message by turning wheels mechanically which is effectively what computers do now to encrypt things to keep them safe but we managed to get hold of one of their machines which was taken from a sinking submarine.

Many very talented people went to Bletchley Park, which was very hush hush at the time, they were told to keep a ten shilling note about their person at all times so as to be ready should they be called at short notice and that if asked where they were going to say they were joining Captain Ridleys shooting party.

One of these very clever individuals was Alan Turing and together they broke the German codes and, it is said shortened the war by perhaps two years.

As the establishment was under Official Secrets Act people who worked there were forbidden to speak of having worked there, so much so that people even got married to each other and did not admit to each other they had worked there until many years later.

Rather sadly after the war Alan Turing who is credited with effectively being the inventor of  the modern computer was prosecuted in 1952 for being homosexual which was illegal in those days and committed suicide in 1954.

He was never given proper recognition for the work he did at Bletchley Park which is somewhat of an Enigma.