Giving the Schafernaker

Ben and Tom had the idea of getting the phrase giving the Schafernaker into common usage, just like the Santorum (NSFW) and lifting your luggage (NSFHypocrites).

Next time you’re cut up on the motorway, pushed about on the Tube, or just plain fed up with the world consider giving the Schafernaker.

Due to engineering works Platform 9 3/4 is closed


Today’s commute was slightly more exciting this morning due to filming of the final scenes of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Part II. Network Rail staff were less amused as commuters blocked up platform 3 trying to get photos for their children. ‘Course I only took this for Ang’s sake.

The world’s in a state of chassis Juno

Tiger mothA couple of nights ago we were settling down for the night when this thing on the left started dive bombing the bed. With no clue as to how an insect managed to survive this long into the winter or even that night, when the outside temperature was a couple of degrees below freezing we assumed that it came back with us from a week’s holiday in Malta. Turns out it was a Peacock Butterfly and was probably asleep in a cupboard somewhere but thought it was spring when the heating came on.

I’m nervous about what else might be lying dormant..


The office where I work, like most modern offices, has a posh coffee machine with several options. Is this wealth of choice really actually worth it? Let’s try all of the options and see.

  • Café Crème: Not a great start. You’d be forgiven for thinking that this is coffee with cream as I did. Imagine my disappointment to find it was just a cup of black, quite bitter, Americano style coffee which tastes no better than instant. Milk might help, but for the purposes of this taste test the only addition I’m making is my usual two sugars.
  • Americano: This actually does what it says on the tin. Unfortunately it tastes like warm dirty water. We’ll not be having it again.
  • Espresso: No, it’s not expresso and in this case it’s barely espresso. I won’t be sleeping much tonight.
  • Café au Lait: From the French for Coffee with Milk, one would expect it to be simple coffee with a dash of cow juice. In reality it seem more like a latte, with a dash of Americano style coffee topped up with heated milk. This seems to be the best, so far.
  • Hot Water: You are kidding? No, I won’t drink a cup of hot water with two sugars in it.

So, apart from only keeping me up for the next week I’ve discovered that machine made coffee is pretty much all the same. I just want a pot of filter coffee – is that asking too much?

Venice in Peril

Rondo Veneziano - Odissea VenezianaHave you ever had an image in your mind’s eye? An image so real it has to be a memory, albeit a memory whose origins are lost in the haze of youth.

Ever since I can remember, I’ve recalled an animation of Venice’s final moments where the watery city falls into the sea while a string quartet with smooth faces of reflective glass played a classical piece. Thanks to the magic of radio I’m no longer haunted.

A piece by Rondò Veneziano reminded me of the Live at 3 theme tune back from old school RTÉ. When I went searching about the band, I found out that my memory was a video for one of their songs.

Nice to know I wasn’t hallucinating.


At the weekend I did end up going to Colchester, despite inviting myself and it being on a Friday rather than a Saturday. As I’m in full training for another driving test, the conversation on the way down involved mostly talking about driving and roads – especially the scary Girton Interchange.

The party itself was fun. It was good to see some of the people I’d met before the last time I was invited down there, and also good to drink vast quantities of wine. Of course this led to a Saturday where I didn’t rise until three in the afternoon – only because a friend’s text message vibrated my trousers until I couldn’t ignore it any longer. Due to fragility we didn’t leave Colchester until seven pm and the rest of the weekend was a complete writeoff.

Plans to go to the pub on Sunday were curtailed somewhat due to a certain excessiveness. I’m just glad that was the only reason for Panda’s flushed face and odd behaviour.