# Wednesday, 18 April 2007

The dangers of late-night flits to Asda

Every year, right after the last Yom Tov of Pesach goes out, I zip off to Tesco (along with most of the rest of North Manchester's Jewish population) and stock up the cupboards. This year I decided not to. We were off to Leeds the day after, so we weren't in urgent need of chometz, and could do a shop on the way home.

Predictably, we stayed in Leeds longer than we should have, and didn't have time to go to Tesco on the way home. As they are open 24 hours, we decided to go later that night. Well, it looked like a plague of locusts had hit the place! There were long stretches of empty shelves, and the usually helpful Tesco people just laughed when I asked if they had any Corn Flakes. It seems that I was the 97th person to ask in the last five minutes. So, we did a minor bit of shopping, and decided to leave the rest for another day.

On the way out, I remembered that there is a big Asda just nearby, which is also open 24 hours. Never having been, we decided to go there and just buy a box of Corn Flakes and some Weetabix. Big mistake, it cost us 90 quid!

You see the problem is that Asda sells just everything! Not just food and stuff, but telephones, toys, clothes, cupboards and so on. Our local Tesco sells some of this as well, but not as much. We really got carried away!

Trouble was, we enjoyed it so much that we've been back several times since! These late-night flits are getting expensive!

Ho hum, the cost of living eh?

#    Comments [0] |

Simcha at 12 and a half months

I know I've been a bit lazy about updating this blog, but here's something to prove that I do add entries sometimes :-)

The day after Pesach, we took a PSG trip to Leeds to see Grandma and Grandpa's new flat. Whilst we were there, Simcha had a go at sitting in an ornate carved wooden chair they have. The result was just too scrummy to keep to ourselves...

Hopefully more regular updates, jokes and pictures will hit this blog... but don't hold your breath!

#    Comments [0] |
# Wednesday, 21 March 2007

My daughter the literary genius

Simcha now has a huge vocabulary of high quality words. She can say "bup bup," which means "Please pick me up" as well as, erm, well not much else really!

Still, we think she's a genius.

#    Comments [0] |
# Tuesday, 13 March 2007

Who says the art of fine writing is dead?

Apparently, the following quote appeared in the Washington Post. As usual, I no responsibility for the accuracy of this claim, but I hope it's true!

"...its like, when everybody is sending off all these really bad vibes, right? And then, like, the Earth explodes and it's like, a serious bummer."

#    Comments [0] |
# Wednesday, 07 March 2007

Great site - how to build almost anything

I just came across a great site that tells you how to build almost anything. I found instructions for how to build a Jacob's Ladder (great toy that fascinates the adults too), a match rocket and loads more. See it for yourself.

Have fun!

#    Comments [0] |

From Horseshoe Crab to Formula One in two weeks - Simcha update

Having commented on Simcha's similarity to a Horseshoe Crab, at least in terms of her inability to roll over, she has made remarkable progress in the last two weeks.

We first noticed that something had changed when she was found sitting up in her cot one morning. Given that she sleeps on her back, she much have rolled over to sit herself up. This was purely conjecture for almost a week, until we spotted her in action.

Since then she has come on in leaps and bounds. She now walks around the furniture quite fast, and whizzes up and down the room using a baby walker, reminiscent of a Formula One driver. She hasn't yet figured out how to turn, so she hits the wall at the end of the room and looks around for help until some kind soul turns her around, but her speed is quite impressive.

I know, in no time at all she'll be getting married and we'll be wondering where the time went!

#    Comments [0] |

Nice one from English Heritage

Anyone living in England must have seen the blue signs that the English Heritage put up indicating places of (questionable) interest. I have no idea if this one is real or a clever piece of image manipulation, but I thought it was lovely!

#    Comments [0] |
# Monday, 12 February 2007

Am I stupid or are they?

Seen on the web site of a telephone provider just now...

"Broadband free for first 6 months, thereafter no extra charge

Go on someone, explain that one!

#    Comments [0] |
# Tuesday, 06 February 2007

My daughter the horseshoe crab

Some time ago, we went to an aquarium, one of these huge ones with loads of fascinating aquatic creatures. Despite the magnificent spectacle of the main tank (which was the size of several olympic swimming pools), my personal favourites were the horseshoe crabs...

Horseshoe crabs

I have always had a fascination for stupid creatures. Penguins have long been a favourite of mine. They stand around on ice floes, not sure what to do. One of them will suddenly decide to go for a swim and, before you know it, ten thousand penguins are having a swim. They enjoy this for a while and then, one of them decides to get out. Before you know it, ten thousand penguins are back on the ice floe wondering what to do. One of them will suddenly decide to go for a swim and, ... well, you get the idea.

Horseshoe crabs have their own peculiar oddity. As you can see from the picture above, they have a domed shell that comes down to the ground/sand/floor/whatever all around. Underneath, they have really little legs.

Now the problem they have is that they are ideally designed for operation the right way up. Flip one over and it doesn't know what to do. It just lies on its back waving its little legs frantically until one of several things happens...

  • A surge of water comes along and turns it back on its front again. This is somewhat fortuitous and cannot be relied upon as an option. However, it is better than...
  • Other horseshoe crabs come along and run all over the upturned one. This causes it to get all upset and wave its little legs even more. At first, you feel sorry for the poor little fellow (at least, we assume it's a fellow for want of an easy way to determine gender), but after a while it's hard not to laugh. They look very comical like that. It's probably not the least bit comical for the horseshoe crab, but maybe I have a mean streak. Either way, this is better than the final option...
  • A passing predator spots the helpless and agitated upturned horseshoe crab and decides it's time for a spot of lunch. One serving of horseshoe crab a la carte later, and that's the end of that.

Now, anyone with enough spare time on their hands to have read this far might be wondering why on earth I bothered writing about this, and (if they had read the title of this entry) what this has to do with my daughter. Read on dear reader, for your patience shall be rewarded (although only slightly).

Simcha is now ten months old. This is a lovely age, full of fat tummies and giggles. She is crawling around the place at a fair speed now, but still has one major handicap in her movment. Unlike most babies, she still hasn't worked out how to roll from her back to her front. This means that if she ends up on her back, which is not infrequent, she does a remarkably close impression of an upturned horseshoe crab! Ah, so that's what all this drivel was about!

Once on her back, she has pretty much the same options as the horseshoe crab...

  • As surges of water are not so common in our house (B"H), the first option can be replaced by a surge of sibling who sweeps her up into their arms and smothers her in kisses with many a cry of "You're so sweet!"
  • Other children come along and crawl/roll/walk over her. This is usually done in a friendly and non-painful way, but does nothing to help the now squeaking Simcha get back on her front.
  • A passing older sibling spots her and decides it's time for a tickle. At this point, she is helpless and easy prey for the PSG ticklers, who will tickle away until they have had their fill.

Oh well, at least she survives to crawl away, unlike the hapless horseshoe crab. For some great pictures of these creatures, you can visit a web site all about them. Just don't tell them we sent you there!

By the way, those who are squeamish might like to know that horseshoe crabs aren't actually crabs at all. They are actually more closely related to spiders and scorpions, so that's OK :-D

#    Comments [0] |

How the NHS saves on prescription charges

We had a family visit to the doctor this morning. Actually, not quite the full family, but three patients and two hangers-on (Mummy and Simcha) who came to offer moral support.

We discovered a whole new side to the NHS. Instead of walking out with prescriptions for medicines, we all three came out with leaflets. Apparently it is more cost-effective to cure ailments with leaflets than with medicines. The only problem was, they didn't tell us how often to apply the leaflets. Thankfully our doctor has a laser printer, so we didn't end up with ink stains on our skin when rubbing the leaflets on.

Still, gave me something (dull) to read over breakfast.

#    Comments [0] |