Tuesday, 27 December 2011

Let's Go - The Cars

Makes you wonder eh? Fancy people wanting to open shops on Christmas Day... whatever next?

Let's hope the Christmas Day Trading Act 2004 will hold this notion at bay for as long as possible and keep it as a 'special day'.

As far as I can see by the huge amount of sales this year we don't need added time to shop as there simply isn't enough cash to go round. I remember as a lad in Stratford-upon-Avon that Wednesday was half-day closing day... apparently Tesco's best sales day is now Sunday... and can you imagine them closing early one day a week? Hmm...

Let's hope that we can keep some of our traditions in 2012...

Saturday, 24 December 2011

TV is King - The Tubes

There was a time when TV was great and best of all there was the ground-breaking and totally awesome 'The Sweeney'. An education for a young man of 14 I can tell you and even now it's still showing on ITV4, it's plain brilliant.

Regan and especially Carter were huge heroes on mine, and it's was a breaking ground for many a young actor including Karl Howman or 'Jacko' as he became in the 80's sitcom, Brushstrokes'... as in today's programme.

Makes you wonder what will stand the test of time for today's programmes as Christmas looks rather bleak on the old box this year for new shows, apart from the very funny 'Outnumbered' perhaps in an otherwise dire schedule.

The only bright spot is that the hours of viewing will be topped up by The Two Ronnies, Morecambe and Wise and the odd Good life and Porridge, which makes me think that the 'Golden Age of TV was probably 1975... as it was for music imo.

1975 Christmas number 1 was Bohemian Rhapsody... see what I mean!

Anyway, let's hope we can keep the rest of Christmas as traditional as possible eh? and we hope you have a very enjoyable one...

Merry Christmas from Rory and Jen...

Friday, 23 December 2011

Get Ready - New Order

My word Christmas has come round quickly this year... and it's always surprising that although we know when it is each year it has arrived at 100 miles an hour... There has to be an easier way to get ready for the festive period, or is that the fun part?

Cardiff was chocka earlier today and full of party groups out presumably on their last day of work before the break, they certainly looked happier than most of the shoppers I saw. They looked rather strained IMO.

Anyway, it's finally stopped raining and there's no chance of a White Christmas in these parts but I am looking forward to the break as we haven't stopped during the past few months and it will be good to get some local running in, especially on the hills.

Are you running over Christmas?

Thursday, 22 December 2011

Change - The Lightning Seeds

I was thinking today of all the best presents that we had when we were kids and there really were some big highlights at Christmas which included Subbuteo and Scalextric... Toys of the Gods IMO which gave hours and hours of fun, unlike the modern toys that are now available at miserable toy outlets such as Toys R Us or should I say Toys ain't Us, more We R Rubbish. What a terrible shopping experience!

Nothing will ever compare with 'The Midland Educational' shop of Stratford-upon-Avon's High Street or a trip to Hamleys when we were little back in the 60's. The magic has simply... gone, as has Santa. Pearl at 6 already knows that it's all lies and wants to know the truth! Maybe there's another 12 months in it but it's doubtful... and it's a bit sad really.

Wii and DS will never take the place of old style Lego or Airfix and let's pray that you will always be able to get hold of a Spitfire Mk1 1/72 kit as every boy needs to have had a go at one, it's part of growing up.

Maybe, I will get one myself this year to relive my youth... well here's hoping anyway as I did put it on my list and I have been a good boy!

What's Santa bringing you?

Wednesday, 21 December 2011

Name of the Game - Abba

We have seen a Morgan, Keaton, Mason and believe me not, even a d'Artagnan (no doubt spelt Dartagnan) today in my 'Terrible Names for Children Part II Blog'. What is it with people and these AWFUL names for kids? It makes me cringe! My extensive research shows that the 'chavier' it gets, the names get worse!

Taylor and Harrison as you know are pet hates for any child and their middle initials of ADH and D seems to be a natural progression for these poor kids.

I am not sure where these names even came from, perhaps they are Brittany and Ryan mutations? I wish they would go away, along with the Madisons and Paris' of this world. It's time to have tighter government control on having stupid names for kids and make sure that names are spelt correctly and are only chosen from an approved list with the obvious exceptions.

More tomorrow...

Monday, 19 December 2011

Day Tripper - The Beatles

No wonder the nation is in crisis, especially at the Passports Office as I saw the worst case of their personnel usage by them having an employee pointing people to the next available position at Bristol Airport today. I mean are people THAT STUPID?

Even the Post Office have worked out the 'Cashier Number 1 Please' or 2 or 3 etc... I think they ought to get someone in to sort them out...

As do easyJet with their 'Speedy Boarding' ... which was far from 'Speedy' and gave the people who paid (we didn't but claimed for Speedy on Salter's dodgy feet) for the privilege a massive 30 seconds start up the steps onto the plane... talk about a dismal experience.

Let's hope that some Christmas cheer shines thru the gloom of December... and hopefully someone will give me my own Room 101 for Christmas where these as well as good old Lenny and Dawn will become no more...

Here's hoping...

Sunday, 18 December 2011

Conquer the World - Energy

Conquer the World and that's just what Jenny did today on a very cold track in Barcelona. The 206km target set prior to the event would put her 4th in the GB rankings to go to Poland in next year's World Championship Event and subject to confirmation she passed that by a staggering 500 metres... phew!

The Spanish actually did an amazing job of staging every type of running event possible during the day using different lanes of the track. Our 437.70 metre lane made for some interesting if not complicated correlations as to how far to go and on how many laps had been completed. My biggest fear of the night was for a Spanish power cut and data loss... but it didn't and the people were so supportive. I would imagine most runners are still buzzing from the amount of Rola Cola they have consumed over the past 24hrs. Boy did they drink gallons of that.

It was nice for me to run with the leaders for my 97 laps to get yet another marathon clocked up and I must say I was most glad to stop at that stage... little did I know how many more miles I would cover to make sure Jenny was, fed, watered, humoured, pushed, kicked and clapped to an amazing run, proving that she is in fact a 'World Class Athlete'..

Right now?... she's a World Class Sleeper and I am looking into buying some jockey wheels so that I can get her mobilised for the trip home.

12 hour Champion and 24hr Runner-up... my word the Girl did well and I am most proud.

Friday, 16 December 2011

Roundabout - YES

I said I wouldn't do a track marathon again this year or more like EVER but tomorrow's 24hr Track Race in Barcelona gets me doing just that, what was I thinking and how did I get conned into this one? Anyway it will be a lot easier for me jogging away 42.2km in 4 to 5 hrs than Jenny's task of 209km+ to get a qualifying place in next year's World Championships. Yikes!

And warm it's not and actually it's a bit brrrreezzzyy to say the least in the quietest city in Europe... if we think the shops are quiet in the UK, they are incredibly dead here.

The other thing I have noticed is that I am very TALL here! The locals are quite a lot smaller than me... it's more like Lilliput than Catalunya or is it my heels.... Anyway...

How we both fair from tomorrow midday to midday Sunday, well no-one can guess as we have done bugger-all training but then again that might be a bonus as we are both totally chilled as far as a Salter can get before a race. She'll be going for it for sure anyway and I will encourage her as much as her backside can take the pounding of my size 11 to get her over the 210km she needs.

It would finish off a great year for her... and her Coach :-)

Wednesday, 14 December 2011

Who are you? - The Who

I am pretty much on the pulse when it comes to Music and Entertainment but I am surprised that some of the so called entertainers we are being exposed to this Christmas leave me very cold and also are really quite useless.

The first case is Michael Buble or Michael Bubble as I call him... he is just so cheesy and who can say that they actually likes this guy?

And my second exhibit is Justin Bieber, who looks about 12 years old and hopefully has a career that finishes the day he starts shaving... Simon Cowell must have bought all of his records personally to get him this far.

The problem is that whilst we are being exposed to new artists like T-Pain singing 5 o'clock with Lily Allen (possibly the worst song I have ever heard), Bubble and Bebo will continue to rule the airwaves.

Are Coldplay the best we can offer in return?

Monday, 12 December 2011

Haircut 100 - Fantastic Day

I thought the 'Combover' hairstyle was long gone but I saw umpteen today at Hopwood Services on the M42 when a wrinkly bus turned in and a grey tidal wave of men busily coiffuring their locks in the strong winds with combs, pulled up.

Some of them were not really worth having as they contained just a few strands of hair that I think Robert Robinson would have approved of.

Thank heavens Bobby Charlton finally saw the light and went for the clippered look, I know 'cos I met him and I am going to keep my hairdresser (Jenny) with the clippers firmly set on number 1. It's certainly not for me...

Do you know anyone that has their armpit hair scraped up & over? Bet you do...

Friday, 9 December 2011

Cold - The Pines

Thank heavens for Lemsip I say... as the colds and coughs seem to be coming to the ULTRArace Team, (more Jenny really as I am a lot, lot tougher of course!!!), it's been time to reach out for the all remedy cold answer.

I reckon you could do major operations and cure many other common complaints using these bad boys, and yes I know they only have paracetamol and some flavouring in them but somehow, they seem to work and make the world a better place.

Anyone else got any good cold and cough remedies?

Tuesday, 6 December 2011

Plastic Age - Buggles

When did the plastic things on the Supermarket conveyor belt become the from? And why on earth do we need them? It's a bit like those adverts on petrol pump nozzles telling us there's a 'meal deal' on Coke, Crisps and a High Fat Sandwich at your local petrol station...

It's so funny how things become the norm and I can remember going to Chicago in 1999 and going into Starbucks for the first time being stuck on what the hell to order as all I wanted was a coffee... not a frappacheeserbollockacanainabrownwhite16ozmediumlargetogodrinkinaddyourownmilkandwaitforsomeonetopaywithableedingcardtypeway!!!

Breathes in... We are making life far too hard... a simple coffee or a tea like it used to be and shops that sold one type of thing was a lot simpler and kept the economy going. At this rate there will only be the dreaded 'T' shop left and we will then have to put all our worldly goods between plastic dividers and we will all be on Tescoffee for ther rest of our days...

More tomorrow... I'm off to down the corner shop...

Sunday, 4 December 2011

Tiger Feet - Mud

Not so Tiger Feet and more Mud actually as we went out on the new 'Canton Canter' fact finding mission today. I can't say that I was too enthused at the start of the run but we were quickly running alongside The Millennium Stadium and out through the docks passing The Welsh Assembly buildings. The new developments along Cardiff Bay are simply stunning and make a great impression on me early on in the run.

From there past the lovely Penarth, with some of the best and worst houses in Wales and it was uphill for AGES until we hit more hills and MUD, quagmires of the darn stuff and then more hills until we found a newly marked footpath which was also on our OS map but blocked off by the M4! We did a 180 here and found our way round to connect again with the planned Taff Trail route back to Pembroke Road and a warm bath.

It's a tough run... in fact, a very tough run and maybe I have to consider people's ability before taking my clients out on it.

More tomorrow from Yaaarrrrrrkkkkkkkksshire. Yes I get around you know...

Saturday, 3 December 2011

Cuddly Toy - Roachford

I saw the 2012 London Olympic Games Mascots today in town and ended up asking how many 'Wenlocks' had been sold in good old John Lewis ... after looking on their computer, the assistant said 21... to which I am amazed as it's a bit rubbish really. The other one is called Mandeville, if you were wondering...

Looking at it, it's hardly a World Cup Willie from 1966 or a cuddly Russian Winter Olympics 2014 Mascot, Cheburashka. Un-endearing is how I would describe it and possibly only Lord Seb thinks it's a good idea... let's hope I don't get one for Christmas as I can't possibly ever get to an age where they are worth a fortune on Ebay in the future...

Although having only sold 21... it might already be worth a bomb...hmm, I am off to John Lewis to get me a bargain.

Bet you want one now?

More tomorrow...

Friday, 2 December 2011

Quiet Life - Japan

Ahhh.... and RELAX... yes it's all over and we are now firmly based in central Cardiff, in lovely Wales... 'Land of my Fathers'. Well Granddad anyway although he was from nearby Barry. I must say that it's been a lot of hard work but we are finally all straight and ready for action... in good old ARAF!

I'm not too sure if you will ever see me in the Scarlet shirt or singing a 'bad hand at scrabble' at the Millennium Stadium against the not so 'Mighty Whites'... but for the time being ULTRArace is as Welsh as Jenny... how much more Welsh can you get eh?

So the next few weeks including the Christmas period will be a good time to get to really know my new neighbourhood and possibly progress off the TOM TOM to go from LL to GH (that's an A to Z, Welsh joke) and find some new and challenging long distance routes to run and train on.

Dyddia Da...