30 May 2010

Summer was great! The weather forecasters were correct on this occasion – summer lasted from last Thursday until Tuesday of this week. Now, we are back to cold, windy weather with just the spot of occasional rain for variety. It was terrific while it lasted.

Fortunately, last Sunday was outstanding and I was able to get on the bike for a delightful cycle around the neighbouring countryside, as a few photos taken enroute will attest. (Click for a larger version).

I had an intriguing conversation with a motorist who stopped beside me at the side of the road. I had stopped to take a photograph of the view from the top of a hill when this car slowed down and then stopped. I naturally assumed they were about to ask for directions but, as I leant in the passenger side window to enquire in what way I could be of assistance, the woman driving chastised me with some feeling – it seems, in her view, I had stopped in a very dangerous position on the road.

I have to confess, I was somewhat perplexed by her comment so I slowly looked down the road in the direction from which she had come. There was a clear view up the road for something approaching 300 metres so I asked her what exactly she meant. She maintained that my stopping on the road made it difficult for motorists to overtake me safely.

To be fair, the road in the direction we were both heading did curve around to the right after about 100 metres and it was difficult for a motorist to see whether it was safe to overtake me without slowing down. And there was the nub of her “problem.” Although she didn’t admit it, she was clearly annoyed because she had to slow down to overtake this f***ing cyclist and, as I was stopped by the side of the road, decided she would vent her frustration. Of course, she would have had to slow down to overtake me anyway and the fact that I was stopped by the side of the road was neither here nor there. Still, I smiled politely, thanked her for her concern and suggested that if she felt it was dangerous overtaking cyclists, perhaps she should slow down a bit.

Fortunately, I was at the side of the road and did not get sprayed with stones and pebbles as she sped away.

I was at home on Wednesday and Pen was upstairs in the SeamStress workshop labouring away, ably assisted by her mother and sister Judi who had arrived from Toronto the previous morning. At about half past one I wandered up to offer to prepare them each a simple tuna and cheese quesadilla. Penny declined existing, as she is at the moment, on fresh air and shredded cardboard. Interestingly, Beryl and Judi also declined with a somewhat quizzical look on their faces. So, off I went and prepared a very tasty snack. As I was just finishing my repast, they came into the kitchen, enquiring what I was eating. “A tuna fish, cheese and salsa quesadilla,” I replied. The disappointment which crossed their faces was palpable – it seems they had both, independently, assumed I had been offering them a “case of beer” for lunch.

Ms Playchute had a delightedly delightful birthday (I think). She certainly received an abundance of birthday cards and assorted greetings so many, many thanks to all of you who participated. Fortunately, I had remembered and had carried out my birthday shopping on Tuesday afternoon.

One of the items I wanted to purchase was a new, 26cm frying pan so off I went to Banbury’s finest kitchen shop. As I shuffled through the various frying pans on display an assistant appeared and enquired whether she could be of assistance. So, I explained that it was my wife’s birthday and I wanted to purchase a good frying pan.

A look of despair bordering on disgust crossed her face, as if she had just discovered a most unpleasant aroma under her nose. “Are you sure your wife wants a frying pan as a birthday present?” she asked patiently.

I know full well that one should never purchase kitchen utensils or appliances for one’s loved one’s birthday, anniversary or Christmas. I suppose the only thing worse would be to buy her an electric power tool or tickets to a sporting event. So, I sought to reassure the assistant that (a) we needed a frying pan, our previous small frying pan having long ago lost all its non-stickiness, and (b) now that I am somewhat less employed than previously, I am doing more cooking and therefore the frying pan would also be of use to me. Those two “excuses” did not come close to persuading her so I did have to reveal that I also had already purchased several other presents of a more personal and intimate nature and that the frying pan was merely an afterthought bordering on a necessity. Eventually, after much thoughtful consideration, she did allow me to purchase the frying pan and very nice it is too!

We’re off to Surlej in Switzerland for a week from Wednesday so you will be delighted to know that there will definitely be no Befouled Weakly News to constipate your mail boxes next Sunday. Hopefully, the volcano will stay dormant so that we can get there and back and the weather will co-operate while we are there.

Finally, I enjoyed Time’s list of the 50 worst inventions. How could spray on hair thickener not catch on and where is it now that I need it? Have a look here.

Love to you all,


A farmer got pulled over by a state trooper for speeding, and the trooper started to lecture the farmer about his speed and, in general, began to throw his weight around to try to make the farmer uncomfortable.

Finally, the trooper got around to writing out the ticket, and as he was doing that he kept swatting at some flies that were buzzing around his head.

The farmer said, “Having some problems with circle flies there, are ya?”

The trooper stopped writing the ticket and said—”Well yeah, if that’s what they are—I never heard of circle flies.”

So the farmer says, “Well, circle flies are common on farms. See, they’re called circle flies because they’re almost always found circling around the back end of a horse.”

The trooper says, “Oh,” and goes back to writing the ticket. Then after a minute he stops and says, “Hey… wait a minute, are you trying to call me a horse’s ass?”

The farmer says, “Oh no, Officer. I have too much respect for law enforcement and police officers to even think about calling you a horse’s ass.”

The trooper says, “Well, that’s a good thing,” and goes back to writing the ticket.

After a long pause, the farmer says, “Hard to fool them flies though.”

A little old Irishman gets pulled over by a policeman, who says,

“Sir? Do you realize your wife fell out of the car about a mile back?”

The old fella replied, “Oh, thank Christ. I thought I’d gone deaf!”

A middle-aged guy had just been dumped by his wife. So, he decides to go out and buy a shiny, new red BMW Z-3 convertible. He’s driving along at 80 mph, when he sees a flashing light on a police car in the rear view mirror.

“What the hell, he can’t keep up with a BMW,” he thinks to himself. So he floors it.

A few minutes later, he’s overcome with guilt. “Hey! What am I doing,” he thinks? And he slows down and pulls over.

The cop asks him for his license, and walks around the car while he examines both. When the cop gets back to the driver’s door, he says, “It’s Friday the thirteenth. My shift is just about over. I’m tired and I want to go home. If you can give me a good excuse, I’ll let you go.”

The guy thinks for a split second and says…

“My wife just ran away with a policeman. I thought you were trying to give her back.”