Sunday, 14 December 2014

The Bloggies 2014. Part The Second. (and this is where the story really starts)

Due to an unforseen IT failure, similar to that recently suffered by the air traffic control system (NADS), I have hitherto been unable to bring you the second part (and climax) of this years top blog awards.
I have, however, availed myself of the services of top IT consultancy firm Reckless, Boring, and Odious (LLP), and they dispatched a young man with badly written legs and an ill-concealed drink habit who at least partially solved my problem.
So here we go
I can smell the anticipation from here.

First up is Alan Rayner. Blog on the Landscape
Like many of the award winners, Alan has been around a bit and actually has something to write about. As well as interesting posts about his walks and backpacking, he is the “go to man” for gear reviews.Meticulous, practical and objective are words which come to mind.And where he perceives a weakness in a product, he can often advise on a simple mod.
He is also renowned for his DIY gear tips, where he shows how to make items of kit in your own kitchen using only items of domestic waste, a capstan lathe, mig welder and hydraulic press.
While talking of Alan, I have given a special award jointly to Sheila and to Sue Banfield for smiling bravely beside various trig pillars in driving sleet while their better halves fumble with the lens cover.

Next on the elite list is Alan Sloman Alan Slomans Big Walk
Now I must declare an interest here.Many people have been friendly and helpful to me since I strated blogging, but Alan has regularly plugged the site on his hugely popular blog, often resulting in page view numbers well into double figures.Now I am aware of rumours that, in return, he received cash,drugs, and sexual favours from me.This is nonsense. The cash, drugs, and sexual favours were for something completely different. I hope that clears that up

Alan Sloman wers his heart on his sleeve – his liver in his pocket and various extraneous organs concealed about his person..
Many people these days know of Alan in his “Outraged of Berkshire” persona, but he also writes in more relaxed mode. His Lejog account is a classic of its kind and was one of the first things I read when I discovered outdoor blogs.The Challenge chronicles are much read for route information by those who follow, but are also infused with much love and pain.

And now theBig Two
Alen McFadzean. Because they're there
Alen goes to interesting places and illuminates them for us. He also goes to mundane places and makes them interesting.
Each post is carefully crafted with a beginnining, a middle and an end. They are thought-out and thoughtful. A man with a life and a sense of place, humanity and a love of words. And the pictures are no bad either.

And finally (in descending order of inside leg measurement)
Mike Knipe  Northern Pies
This blog ticks all the boxes – as does the writer. Having ticked off the Birketts, he is now working on the Greggs and the Baynes.
When others pull the duvet over their head, Mike is out on the hill. When others turn up the central heating and settle down with a good book, Mike is out on the hill. When others are sitting beside the log fire in the pub supping pints of ale, Mike......well nobody's perfect.After years of acting as Boswell to Bruno's Doctor Johnson, he now chronicles the wit and wisdom of a new companion, (I should be so) Lucky. Lots of good stuff, lots of variety, witty, and sensible (?). Comes complete with the smell of wet dog. Fab!

Two very different entries.Lets just say Alen gets Blog of the Year, and Mike gets the Lifetime Achievement (So Far!) Award.

Thanks and apologies to everyone else, especially Andy JJ, Louise, Laura, Iain, David, Ken, Purple Traveller, James etc who have supported the blog, but haven't made it onto the red carpet this time. Next year ?

Right. Everyone back to my place for the after-party.What's on the menu, Bessie ?

Monday, 8 December 2014

Ulrika !

It may have come to your attention that, in recent months, I have become somewhat disenchanted with the functionality of the Google editor.Comments such as "Fucking shite" - "Total garbage", etc read in cunjunction  with my frequent out-flouncings from the blogoshere in fits of pique (and other small dogs) may have hinted at my mild disapproval.
Some of you may have been bemused and distressed by this outflowing of angst. Not, however, the Geek coterie among the readership, with their tweeters and their loom bands.They knew all the time that the dopey old git was one of the 20% of computer users cast adrift by the great god Microsoft and still struggling with Windows XP and IE8.And they were right.
Today I had a Road to Damascus (ok Causewayhead, actually) moment.The Flaming Pie that had appeared to St. John ("with an A") told me the answer in two words Firefox.
And so here we are.

It appears that I can now edit and manipulate text/pics/ clips  and post Links

It's not perfect but then who amongst is  ? Really ? OK, apart from you ?

Here's a couple of clips wot you missed from a previously deleted post

PS. After previewing it appears that the links dont work and that certain random (in its classical meaning)  words appear in big blue letters, but not in the draft.
So it's as you were, I'm afraid.

(Flounces out stage left

Monday, 24 November 2014

The Bloggies 2014

Mount Sloman has erupted again (6.5 on the Richter scale), apparently about some poll of outdoor blogs in a hiking comic called GTO (formerly McNeish's Monthly.)
As a retired outdoor blogger myself (yeah yeah – pining for the fjords) I feel I aam ideally placed to arbitrate on this matter, and in the process reveal the red carpet list for the first ever Bloggies Awards.
Entries were confined to the blogs on my side bar because – well just because, right ? And I might add in a blog thats not on the sidebar if I feel like it . OK?
So, can I start then ?

Postcard from Timperley is first because I used to have a Phreerunner tent (single skin goretex- ripped to shreds on a fence).Martin gets the Duracell Bunny award.Fascinating trips all over the world and many other places. Requires careful reading – you are following daily posts fron some Haute Route, miss a couple of days aand you find he's Munroing on Skye after a brief stop off on Spitzbergen !
FFS, Martin, do you never have a day sprawled on the couch in your pants with some beer and Pringles watching Jeremy Kyle and Loose Women ?
Seriously, interesting stuff, but I have to have wee lie down after reading.

Scott's blog is great, but I don't see it on too many blogrolls. Scott is doing the Munros as weekend day trips from the Central Belt.
I spent a lot of Sunday mornings in the eighties shivering in a cold kitchen at stupid o clock filling a flask and making a piece, listening to the rain lashing the window. Then driving 3-4 hours in a mixture of extreme conditions, not knowing if we would even get on the hill when we arrived, never mind summit it.This blog brings all that back for me and features some great foties of the roof of the world, Scottish style.Also features dogs and rock n roll.

Then there is Danny.What to say about Danny that hasn't been said in the police reports. Posts irregularly with each little gem eagerly awaited by a small but dedicated band of afficionados.Can quote Walter de la Mare and Aldous Huxley. Like most of my favourite bloggers, Danny is a human being with a ”hinterland” - he's done stuff, he knows stuff. He's just the right side of weird (“Which side is that,OM ?”).Not for the PC minded.

So why should big rough tough hillwalkers follow a blog by an middle aged spinster who makes shopping bags out of cat food sachets ? Well, because its Ilona, a national treaure.A fellow seeker after yellow tickets, I'v got some good “economy” recipes from this blog. But every now and then she gets someone to look after the cats and sets off on multi-day backpacks. The routes are usually “non-standard” but have their own internal logic. Her “kit list” for these rambles would baffle most of the youngsters and was probably put together, including her unusual underwear, for less than £20. Again, someone with a life,and with stories to tell.

And then there is Mark. When I first started playing with Blogger, I sent my first post off into the ether and waited for a response.Response came there none until Mark dropped in an encouraging comment and the rest, as they say, is geography. Had he not bothered, One Small Step would have withered on the vine, the skies would have darkened, and civilisation would have come to an end in line with the Mayan prediction (allegedly). Posts appear irregularly and mainly feature a little corner of the planet which I have visited briefly, but which intrigues me.The most talked about feature of this blog is the exquisite close-up flora and fauna photography.What appeals to me about this is not the camera technique, but the fact that he spots the bugs plants etc in the first place. This tells me he is not tanking along at 4+ mph while updating his Facebook page.Also includes kids.

So, if I havent mentioned your blog does this mean that it's crap ?
I may not have mentioned it for one or more of the following reasons
1.You don't post very often
2.I've never read your blog.I'm a busy man, subject to regular tests and experiments conducted by less scrupulous members of the medical profession. Ars longa, vita brevis
3 I read your blog and its informative but lacks the X-factor.
4Your name is Sian
5 Your blog is crap.
6Your blog has made it onto the elite list and will be dissected on a subsequent post when my fingers have stopped bleeding

Sunday, 14 September 2014

"Well it's a mess, aint it , Sheriff?"

this indyref thing.
With North Korea and The Sun supporting one side, and UKIP and the Orange Lodge supporting the other, what's a poor boy to do ?
How, in one week, did I switch, in the eyes of the Mailograph readership, from being a whingeing subsidy-junkie that we would be better off without, to being a treasured fellow citizen that we deperately wish to embrace ?

Tell 'em. Sherriff.

Sunday, 25 May 2014

Birthday boy


Why do you keep posting all that old hippy type music , OM ? There's just as good stuff being written today.

Aye, right.