Monday, November 20, 2006

Hackney Cyclists go East

Adam organised a Sunday ride with Hackney Cyclists today. Five of us met @ Stoke Newington Common, then rode down the Lea River to Woolwich, where we were to catch the five minute ferry across the Thames. Due to lack of ferry, we ended up walking across the river, well underneath in the foot tunnel.

From North Woolwich (after I fixed my puncture), we headed further east along the Thames Path, through (beautiful) Erith and other such towns, past the Thames sewerage pumping station (about 9000 times worse than the worst you've smelt at Glastonbury!), then through to Dartford, where we stopped at The Malt Shovel, a great Young's pub for a roast lunch.

Onwards after lunch, and two riders less, we were ferried thru the Dartford tunnel by the Highways Agency, then a nice ride through some Essex countryside and suburbia to Upminster tube, back to Bromley-By-Bow, back up the Lea to Clapton and Adam's place where I fixed my second bloody puncture. From there, a quick jaunt back to Pyrland Road and the beautiful Katie waiting with roast chicken ready to go! All in all, a top day. Nine hours, forty miles, two pints, two punctures, two roasts.

I've got a few photos of the days proceedings right here.

Gone to Gooners

I managed to score three tickets to watch the mighty Arsenal vs Newcastle yesterday at Emirates Stadium (thanks Phil). So myself, Katie & Bobby went to witness the Gooner magic with 60,000 other fans. Unfortunately, as has been the case on more than one occasion this season, the magic was a tad rusty and it finished 1-1. Still, we managed to check out the ground, and Katie saw her first football match. She wants to buy a couple of season passes. They start at £1200.00!

There's a couplea pics here by the way.

Thursday, November 16, 2006

Four stars in The Guardian for BILLY JOEL????

I know this review's a few months old, but I just remembered it, and being pretty surprised, thought it worth throwing up here. Leopards do change spots, it would seem....

Billy Joel

4 stars NEC, Birmingham

Dave Simpson
Friday July 7, 2006


There are some things you'd never expect at a Billy Joel concert: the artist hurling a microphone stand 12ft into the air; a roadie called Chainsaw taking lead vocals on a "religious song" which turns out to be AC/DC's Highway to Hell. However, after years off the road, the Piano Man has obviously decided that the one thing left to conquer is his terminally naff public image.

While many have come for ghastly 1980s hits such as Tell Her About It, Joel virtually ignores them all in favour of early material like Angry Young Man. Back then, he says, he was "always bitching about something", but he still delivers fame-game rants Everybody Loves You Now and New York State of Mind with extraordinary venom. Showcasing the songs with three times more energy than usual presents lyrics about Long Island fishing communities and dagger-laden love songs in a new light. Maybe Joel was documenting Noo Yawk life as effectively as Lou Reed all along.

Between songs, he's hilariously pithy: patting his bald head, beginning to play Rule Britannia only to snort: "Ah, always a cheap trick!"

Perhaps if it hadn't been for the likes of Uptown Girl, Joel would still have been considered a peer of Springsteen. Here, he first sends the song up - adopting the romantic persona "Julio" - then switches to the veiled loathing of Sid Vicious doing My Way. He seems far happier tearing through rockers like You May Be Right and It's Still Rock'n'Roll to Me.

As he leaves, he pours water over himself and tells the cheering hordes: "Don't take any shit from anybody." Pop music has rarely been much weirder. At 57, Billy Joel has become a punk.

Bring it on!

11/2 for a whitewash? Crap eh?

Willyhill are quoting 8/1 for a four one Oz victory!

Wednesday, November 15, 2006

The Simpsons do Army Recruitment

Click here for a clip from The Simpsons.

Quite a good satirisation of the Army recruitment programme (US Style, but I'm sure it holds the UK at least).