Monthly archive for February 2009

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Or, things you should think very carefully about doing.

I have been having some issues with my bank lately. Issues that I like to frame in a blackly comic manner.
I decided that others probably needed to know about my misfortunes, so as to avoid a similar fate, and perhaps chuckle at my futile attempts to get at my money. So I composed a wee anecdote and fired it off into the ether, employing the scattershot that is the title of this post.

Somebody enjoyed my email so much, that they forwarded it, verbatim, with my name, phone number and email address on it, to the manager of this bank (a pretty severe breach of basic email etiquitte IMO). It did not speak in flattering terms of his business or service.

I fear I have made a powerful enemy.

Turkey Shoot

For those of you that read this, aren’t my facebooks friend, and haven’t looked at my flickr (ie probably noone) here are some pictures of my recent jaunt to Istanbul. (they’re bigger if you click’em)

‘Tis a city of many wondrous works such as:

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the former was an early christian church (or patriarchal basilica apparently) but that’s nothing that a few big signs with arabic on them and a lick of paint couldn’t cure. Though someone was bound to start picking away eventually to see what was underneath:


Anyway, the whole Sultanahmet area is basically one huge museum, with the added bonus of street meat and people selling carpets. The tourist police (they’re the guys with large smiles and small automatic weapons) are only to happy to point you in the direction of any number of stupefyingly amazing old things. This is a city that can get away with calling a 500 year old construction ‘the new mosque’.

Just dotted around the place you’ll see things like this:


A bronze pillar that was made by the Greeks in 5th century BC from the spears and shields of defeated Persian invaders (it used to have a golden bowl on top, but the Roman soldiers tasked with bringing it to Constantinople ‘lost’ it.)

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an authentic Egyptian phallic thingee:

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and so forth. If you get bored you can go and have a coffee in a 1500 year old subterranean cistern where monstrous blind carp swim amongst thousands of coins of myriad denominations. (Apparently some people think that throwing money into a water tank is lucky.)


Also, someone was nice enough to hew off and dig up some of the choicer pieces of marble and stone, and place them in a nice climate controlled museum (no meat or carpet unfortunately), which itself is probably worth a day or two:




And finally here’s me being irreverent:


next episode: grass and graves at gallipoli

Have you ever wondered…

What this blog would be like if instead of sporadic ramblings it was updated daily but really really short?

Well wonder no more!

Not sure why.

A Friday the Thirteenth question

Is it considered bad luck if you’re out walking and you don’t see a black cat and you almost stand on the black cat and the cat runs away in fright and almost gets run over by a guy driving into a carwash?

Just checking.

How to choose an appropriate movie for an airport departure lounge

1. Make sure that the movie contains graphic, realistic violence – guns, explosions, get it all in there.

2. The more times the word ‘fuck’ is shouted in a given minute, the better.

3. If its 1.55am, make sure the volume is turned up loud, the better to hear the machine gun fire and screams of the bereaved. You don’t want anyone nodding off.

3. Wait, since when did we show movies in departure lounges anyway?

I can only assume the good folks at Dubai International Airport ran through a similar process to this when deciding to screen Battle for Haditha at us while we waited for our flight. At 2 in the morning.

NB: its quite possibly a very good and important film, but people running around screaming FUCK FUCK FUCK and then shooting each other is not a great start to any plane journey.

a slight redaction

sentences from the last post that would have had quotes on them, had I been able to locate the key:

“misunderstanding” in the fingers in the air quotation marks sense


“Crazy are you crazy I love you I kill you.” in that it was a direct quotation.

Further Things I Did Not Know Were A Thing

fu·nic·u·lar (fyŏŏ-nĭk’yə-lər, fə-)

1. Of, relating to, or resembling a rope or cord.
2. Operated or moved by a cable.
3. Of, relating to, or constituting a funiculus.

n. A cable railway on a steep incline, especially such a railway with simultaneously ascending and descending cars counterbalancing one another.

Also I am in Istanbul right now. I can not use any contractions because I do not know where the apostrophe key is located on this crazy keyboard. The man behind me is trying to clear up some sort of misunderstanding involving a text message from a woman, via Skype.

Crazy are you crazy I love you I kill you.