Jan 28

Saved by the Snowmen

After months and months of constant rain the country is about as water logged as it can be, for a while now it has only taken a couple of hours light rain to cause flooding all over the place. So with the ground already to capacity, there has been a kind of Nationwide concern over what would happen when the several feet of snow finally melted.

In fact, the Nationwide worry was so “worrying” that the Government environmental agency issued advice on how to prepare and even help prevent flooding. That amazing, scientific, flood defence advice was………….

…………..Wait for it……………

To build Snowmen!


Yes, the cunning plan was that if everyone went out and built a snowman then flooding would be prevented. The logic being, Snowmen take longer to melt than normal snow, so by converting a lot of normal snow into Snowmen, the melting is staggered and flooding prevented.

Now my first thought on hearing this advice, was the same one you are probably having right now. That somehow “The Great Intelligence Institute” had infiltrated the environmental agency, and was planing on taking over the Earth with its army of Snowmen. (I’d seen something similar on a Documentary screened Christmas time)

I did try to investigate this further by checking with the person who answers to the name “The Doctor”, which was not as easy as it sounds. Knowing that with an army of Snowmen were being built, he would be around somewhere I kept an eye out for an old blue police box. I did not find the Police Box because he had the chameleon circuit working an the Box was now in the guise of a old Red Telephone Box. Unfortunately the Doctors recent regeneration seems to have caused problems with the language centre of his brain. The conversation went something like this :-

GN:Doc, Can I call you Doc?

Doc:What? Can I help you?

GN:I think the Great Intelligence is trying to take over the earth again with an army of Snowmen

Doc:What? what are you going on about? Who are you?

GN:The government’s plan to build an army of snowmen

Doc: *picks up the phone*Police. I need help

I decided then that my work was done, The Doctor was obviously contacting the Police/UNIT in an attempt to help. And help he did.

We had a weekend of rain, all the snow melted but there was no flooding this morning, and suspiciously no Snowmen. I can only assume the Doctor did what he did and fixed it all as we slept… So I’d like to say.

Thanks Doc..

Jan 22

Snowmageddon – 2013

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I realised this blog had been getting a bit too wordy, and was lacking some images. So I thought I would share some of the images from Snowmagedon 2012 Gorram years changing on me.. 2013.

Sep 15

Hurricane Katia 0: Ninja Temple 1

The start of this week saw parts of Wales hit with edges of Hurricane Katia, there was flooding, damage, cats and dogs raining from the sky, the four horsemen of the apocalypse started to saddle thier horses up ready to fly only to have to stand down after health and safety said it was unsafe to ride horses during an apocalypse.*

Luckily With the Ninjas Temple being on high ground, and no where near the coast we survived the worst of the damage & flooding.

Unluckily a rather large, old tree did fall from the excessive winds and smash into the roof of the Ninja Temple. It was impressive, half the building was hidden under the branches of a mighty old tree.

Luckily the temple was built over specification, and the roof is lined with rather thick strong concrete tiles which were able to hold the weight of the tree without doing any obvious damage.

Unluckily it did wipe out the TV aerial. AND during the Rugby World Cup :(

Luckily I have a degree in electrical & electronic engineering, with a load of side qualifications in the field. So that particular issue was soon rectified.

So all in all the spiritual power of the Ninja Temple shrugged off the damage dished out by Katia. We are now ready for round 2.

*Some of these actions may not have happened outside of my mind.
Feb 24

Schrodinger’s Snow

I have a new theory!

R:You say you have a new theory about the brontosaurus.?

GN:errr No. I said I had a new theory! nobody mentioned a brontosaurus.

R:Right, Got You… So What’s your theory about the brontosaurus.?

GN:Arrrrrggghhhhh!” ::sigh:: “OK, This theory goes as follows and begins now. All brontosauruses are thin at one end; much, much thicker in the middle; and then thin again at the far end.

Ignoring that mindless drivel. I have a new theoretical supposition involving the Copenhagen interpretation of quantum mechanics. (impressive right?)

Let me set the environment for this eureka moment.

  1. Warm bed.
  2. Early Morning.
  3. Work Day.

    So there I was all warm and comfortable when my alarm went off telling me it was time (Give or take several hits of the snooze button) to get up and get ready to go to work.

    Now the previous evening/night it had been snowing rather heavy and at the time I had last checked before going to bed, the snow was a couple of inches deep.  If the snow had continued over night then there would be no way I would be driving to work, so would be working from home. This would mean I could go back to sleep for an extra hour.  On the other hand, If the snow had changed to rain then the pre-fallen snow would have been destroyed leaving the roads clear for traffic.

    So at this point the availability of an extra hour lie-in is dependent on the situation outside my building. Has the snow blocked me in, or has the snow gone? The only way to determine the quantum state of the snow (Snow or Water) is for the observer (me) getting up and looking outside to observe the current state.

    The problem with this is :-  If I get out of bed to go check outside, then I am already up and about so any chance of a lie-in is destroyed.

    On a side note. I think I need an Network Camera so I can check the conditions outside without leaving my bed.

    R:Pah! I proffered the theory about the brontosaurus.


    Feb 01

    I saw the Devil ice-skating to work

    I have been thinking, and am a bit confused.

    R:A Bit?

    GN:OK. I’m often confused. I just figured I’d type out my confusion and at the same time send out a call to arms!.”

    For the last several years you would have to have been living as a hermit is a small cave on some hidden mountain peak not to have heard about “Global Warming“.

    To be fair, when the Doom & Gloom brigade first started they rumblings that we were killing the planet, and that gia would not stand for it, and a war between nature and progress would be the end of us…. “Ooops. My bad! That’s the plot of Avatar. But you get the idea.

    At the time we were having Lovely heat waves, Hottest summers since records begun, sweltering heat, warm winters, snow was a thing of the past. So It did look like this “Global Warming” may be real. So the “Experts” said we were killing the planet, the ice caps were melting in the heat, Sea levels would rise, there would be new floods and carnage.

    In fear people jumped on the bandwagon, we had terms like “Carbon Footprint”, we changed the way we live, we turned lights off, or used energy saving ones. We drove less, we quit using cfc’s and aerosols. We did what the experts said. And yet they demand more.  There was recently a global meeting of world leaders to talk about how we could cut down our emissions even more.

    Now this is what confuses me. We cut down our emissions, and since then we have not had a summer longer than 4 days of sunny weather, we’ve had no heat waves. What we have had is the longest cold spells since records begun. We’ve had more snow in the last year then the decade before it.  For the last three months we’ve had permafrost in Wales.

    If we cut down our emissions any more we’re on the edge of creating a new ice age.  Now I don’t know about you guys. But given the choice of “Global Warming” or “Global Freezing” I choose the option that leads to warm days, cold beers, scantily clad women!

    So forget what the so called experts say. What do they know, “Global warming does not equal longest cold spell ever!” So I say, screw them. Lets drive our cars when we don’t really need to, Hell leave the engine running for ten minutes before getting into the car to warm it up. Leave all your lights on 24/7.

    Lets have tree cutting days to counter the tree planting ones. Lets wipe out whole forests.  Lets burn Hippies! that has got to give off some good carbon emissions!

    I am asking you dear Reader, Do what you can to help fight off the Ice Age that’s coming. Remember, A real Ice age is not funny like in the kids films, its not big and its not clever!

    Jan 15

    So, what’s the fox urine for?

    Snow… Snow… Snow… All I can see is snow.  The worlds covered in a thick blanket of fluffy white snow almost a foot deep. Now this was a beautiful and wondrous thing for the first few days, but now? After over a week of being trapped indoors, unable to go out, its getting a bit annoying.

    You see, I live in the middle of the countryside, And even though I drive a foul wheel drive vehicle, the snows been too bad to even get out of my parking place onto my drive, let alone up my steep drive onto the road (Which is never ploughed or gritted) So I’m trapped.  I could walk to the nearest Village about a mile away, only with the deep snow, and freezing cold I’m saving that for emergencies like running out of coffee.

    I should take a moment here to explain this posts title. Not everyone is a Major Film Geek (I know I’m not) and may not pick up on subtle reference’s. The Title is a quote from the movie “Cabin Fever

    The only human interaction I am getting is over IM/Twitter/Etc. And I’m beginning to worry I may be getting this thing I’ve heard off called Cabin Fever. (Damn, why have i not yet watched that episode of Mythbusters?). OK. No worries, Quick to the GOOGLE!!!!!

    Cabin fever is an idiomatic term for a claustrophobic reaction that takes place when a person or group is isolated and/or shut in, in a small space, with nothing to do, for an extended period (as in a simple country vacation cottage during a long rain or snow). Symptoms include restlessness, irritability, forgetfulness, laughter, and excessive sleeping, distrust of anyone they are with, and an urge to go outside even in the (less miserable) rain, snow or dark.

    OK, so Cabin Fever can be got by being snowed into a cottage, so I have the environment for getting it. Right Lets check the symptoms.

    restlessness, irritability, forgetfulness, laughter, and excessive sleeping, distrust of anyone they are with, and an urge to go outside even in the (less miserable) rain, snow or dark.

    Nope, Don’t think I have any of those symptoms yet. Do you?” I asked the Evil looking Goth Gnome that’s sitting next to my keyboard.  He just shrugged, he’s not very helpful.

    Well I’ve not really been sleeping much, never do. and the rest of them don’t sound like me… Hummmmmm. OK. I have been playing with a knife and the end of my desk now has lots of small holes in it from where i was stabbing it.” This is probably why the Gnome didn’t say anything, It’s best not to upset the possibly deranged bloke playing with a razor sharp knife.

    No. I don’t think I have Cabin Fever.

    Well I’ve since dismantled the knife to see if i can re-design it into a faster drawing setup. The Gnomes taken to muttering to himself, I think He’s loosing it being snowbound. I need to keep an eye on him, I cant trust he’s not up to something.

    So I’m just popping out for a minute, I may be some time………….

    Jan 08

    Theres Snow Business Like Snow Business!

    Well I finally managed to get into the Office for the first time since I had an early dart Tuesday due to bad weather (and its now Friday). You see Tuesday where I live had 5.4Inches of snow. I know its exactly 5.4 Inches since I pushed a ruler into the snow and measured.

    So Wednesday morning I woke up to the snow, and my car which was just a big mound of snow with icicles hanging off it. I looked at the drive (Uphill) which was just a mass of snow, and the road that goes bast my drive which is never ploughed/gritted/etc, and I went back indoors and worked from home for two days.

    Now today (Friday) the snow is still there, the council have yet to do anything about the state of my road. So “Why did you go to work?” I hear you ask. Well one of my neighbours has spent the last two days playing with a mini-digger slowly clearing his way to civilisation. And I felt that his sacrifice should not be in vain. So To work I went!


    You don’t believe me?

    I’m shocked, Shocked and Hurt!……….

    OK. Well there may have been the secondary issue of running out of coffee and needing to go out to get some. But I’m sure I’d have gone to work anyway, coffee or no coffee.

    Jul 02

    It’s all over the front page, you give me road rage

    This post should be read to the theme tune  of Road Rage by Catatonia.   roadrage

    You could be taking it easy on yourself
    You should be making it easy on yourself
    Cause you and I know,
    It’s all over the front page, you give me road rage

    Road Rage by Catatonia

    Some mornings I really wish they hurry up inventing the personal teleporter.

    So once again the temperature is stupidly hot, with the possibility of outbreaks of “Dave Syndrome“, and its time for the long commute over the welsh mountains to work.  Now having to drive a long distance in this heat is not a nice experience in a car where the only a/c is opening the windows.  So I did not start off with high expectations, and what little I had did not last long.

    Irritant 1) Animals

    I do not know if its the heat affecting them, or if there’s some big conspiracy in the animal kingdom to get me for some past upset, whatever the reason they are not behaving as you would expect them to. I first noticed this “oddness” when leaving my drive and as I pulled onto the road there was a huge fat pigeon standing in the middle of the road blocking it. So being Nice, I slowly drove up to it so it would fly away. Nothing! It just stood there watching me, as I had to maneuver around it since I did not want my car splattered with dead animal (It took ages to clean off the badger entrails).  After the pigeon there was a rabbit, followed a bit later by a squirrel, then a baby rabbit, another squirrel, and finally a cat.

    Irritant 2) Cars

    Whats going on? Today there are something like one billion extra cars on the road (Give or take a Car). They are everywhere, Why? If it was Friday I’d say there were all taking the day off work to go away for the weekend to enjoy the heat.  Yet here they all are! Junctions I normally just slow down for and get to turn instantly, I’m now stuck parked at for several minutes waiting for a gap in the traffic so i can pull into, Roundabouts are a similar problem.  There’s also the knock on affect of slowness, since the roads are so full.

    Irritant 3) Diversions.. (AKA Pointless Diversions)

    This is also an irritant over stupidness and pointless red tape.  On my route to work there is a junction I have to take. Its a simple T-Junction with a small filer road to make it easier for traffic to flow onto the road speeding it all up.  Now they are currently doing some road repairs on this filter road, leaving the main junction clear.  Yet, and this really is a good example of red tape. The filter road is closed, With loads of “Road Closed” signs, and “Diversion” signs. Now the turning for the junction is about 10 yards from the turning onto the filter road.  This means the sign saying there is a diversion is next to the sign saying “<=- Diversion“.  Then when you turn you have another 10 yards before you hit the sign saying “Diversion Ends“.  The three of them are so close together you can jump from one to the other to the first in a small triangle.  WHY?

    Irritant 4) Road Works

    Why? For the love of the Gods, Why? as soon as we get hot weather does every builder on the planet start doing work on roads, or on building close to roads causing traffic lights, or the road to be restricted to one lane? Is there a Memo that goes out? are they in the pay of petrol stations to waste our petrol by making us constantly stuck waiting to pass?

    Irritant 5) JCB Diggers

    OK.  I don’t really have to say anything about these, it says it all, They are Big Yellow travel at 5 miles an hour and make overtaking on country lanes impossible, and tend to only drive during rush hour commute times…

    So on another day where they claim “Its the hottest recorded day!” (I’m sure they only have records going back one week), I’m stuck inside a metal box slowly cooking on my long commute to work, All I need is some idiot to cut me up, or start tailgateing me and we’re having a bit of road rage!!

    Apr 15

    Some days are good!

    In the velvet darkness, of the blackest sky


    All morning the skies above the Insane Asylum have been dark & brooding as we are sat under a Thunder Storm. Now this is not necessary a bad thing,  OK. So my dogs are outside getting drenched, OK I will spend longer driving home at the end of the day, OK parents with their kids off school will be cursing the weather, and other Bad things I can understand.

    But there is a light in the darkness of everybody’s life..

    What is that positive light I hear you ask. Yes I heard you, thanks to a flashplayer plugin on this site it recorded your statement, and emailed it to me over to my iPhone. No! I will not go do that to myself. Behave!!!

    Well to answer your none-rude question, The positive light is ;- I work for an ISP, which means computer, technology, things that need power to work, and since the storm keeps taking out either our electricity or our Internet connection, it means I get to spend the day sitting back, playing on the Internet via my iPhone. ;o)

    Life Is Good!