Wednesday, August 22, 2012

2012 - 59

Summer Garden Bollocks

I should have known that the two ‘jobs’ I assigned myself this summer would prove to be much more tricky than I expected them to be; the big problem is both need to be done and I’m a bit stymied as to how that is going to be achieved.

The first job, which really should have been done by now, was moving the greenhouse from Point A to Point B – about 40 feet away from where it is at the moment. I have done well, the area it needs to go is prepared, even if the rest of the garden is looking like a municipal tip as a result. The wife was sure that my dad had drilled holes into the paving slab base and then screwed the (rather flimsy) greenhouse onto battening and then screwed these into the base. Well, if he did I don’t know how he did it, but that’s not unusual, my dad was a bit of a bodger at times. When I finally cleared the greenhouse out of all the last 12 years of detritus, I couldn’t see anything anchoring the greenhouse to the floor, except… 12 years worth of detritus.

That’s not a good thing. If you look at the shed from its front, the duck shed sits to its left; a hazel tree, two conifers and about a foot of loam are on the right. The back is up against the fence and there’s 6 inches of loam holding that into place. The greenhouse is fixed more solidly than it would have been had my dad fixed it there with super glue, 6 inch nails and concrete. It won’t move and my fear is that if it does move it won’t be … right. It won’t move the way I want it to. Now, dismantling it isn’t an option. It took my dad and the wife three days to assemble it; the instructions were all in Cyrillic and there were various other problems they faced. I fear this is not going to end well.

The other job was the re-felting of the shed roof and replacing the two areas that have started to rot away. I really don’t want to tell the wife this, but I think this is a job even more difficult than moving the greenhouse. Putting felt on it and re-battening it won’t be a massive job; the fact that the two parts that have rotted away are much bigger and I’d say that 60% of the roof is no longer safe. Now, you might be wondering what the problem is here; it’s just a shed. No; it is not just a shed. When we moved into this house all those years ago, the shed was worth more than the house. The shed is double-glazed and according to our old neighbour, before Fishwife, it was one hell of a massive job, requiring help from various neighbours with access to and through their gardens.

When we bought the house, the estate agent said the shed was in better nick than the house and he wasn’t wrong. The shed has housed rabbits, guinea pigs, tools, wood, stuff and nonsense. It has been, at times, like an extra room. It is the size of an average garage; it cost nearly £700 in 1994 when it was put there. It is coming up to 20 years since it’s been up and I think the only way forward is to find out how much it would cost to have the entire roof replaced. The problem with that is, off the top of my head, the roof is going to be something like 12’ x 30’. Maybe a helicopter airlifting one in would be the best bet, but if I’m going to do that I might as well see what a new shed is going to cost (probably in excess of a grand I’d guess).

(I just went upstairs and checked on line – something like the one we have would cost £1,499, but they would fit it for you! I can't find anywhere that sells just the roofs.)

So, with both these jobs looking somewhere between almost impossible and beyond my abilities, that means that my writing has to be the one achievement for this summer’s holiday. Um, maybe not… Yes, I’m still working on my new, sprawling, idea, but I doubt it will be written in the 6 weeks I’ve written other finished manuscripts and there won’t be much to show by the beginning of September. I suppose reading two and a bit George RR Martin fantasy novels could be construed as something of an achievement…

Crazy Like a Fool

During the watching of The Avengers, the new superhero team all boarded SHIELD’s floating (in more ways than one) fortress where most of their operations are based or start. Obviously it was one of the set pieces, having this aircraft carrier on the sea turn into a massive floating in the sky aircraft carrier – it was always one of the crazier things in the SHIELD comics – then they did something that made me groan and shout at the TV. It turned invisible.

Have I ever had my invisibility rant on here?

There is one massive flaw about being invisible – you’re INVISIBLE. It is far more dangerous than it is practical. Why? Because no one can see you!

I always thought that Wonder Woman’s invisible plane was a really stupid idea. Why? Because you can’t see it! That means you can crash into it without your knowledge.

How about an invisible car? Just how fucking stupid is an invisible car? Why? Because you can’t see it. Other drivers in other cars CAN’T SEE IT!

Being invisible might sound like a good idea; imagine sneaking into the girls’ shower room? But you’d have to be careful because you’d need to be more aware of everything around you than be able to stand there and get a hard on.

Being invisible is great apart from the fact that people can’t see you, so you have to be really aware of this or they will bump into you, run you over, throw things at you (or rather the place where you are standing, but they can’t see you, so it isn’t personal). In fact, because no one can see you, you have to be more aware of what everyone else is doing unless you want someone or thing to accidentally knock into you.

Being invisible is dangerous, not cool!

Here Comes Lorraine Again

If something else was going to stop me from doing the impossible jobs in the garden it was going to be the weather. I’d actually managed to sit outside, do some clearing up, write a lot of this and start reading the 3rd Game of Thrones book and most of it was done in hazy sunshine. By the time I got back from walking the dogs, it had started raining and I had just about enough leeway to get the stuff from the greenhouse under some semblance of cover before the spots turned into something more closely resembling proper rain.

The reason I mention this is because the weather forecast this morning said that showers would die out as the day went on and the simulation of the following few hours suggested that it should already have been raining on me. The forecast even went as far as suggesting that by 1600 hours this part of the country should be bathed in glorious sunshine and experiencing 22 degrees of warmth. I’ve often said that weather forecasting starts to get a touch dodgy whenever low pressure dominates a chart; essentially the Met Office are good with high pressure and that’s about it.

Strangely Offensive People I Know That Aren't Me

I stopped being nasty to people quite a while back now, so whenever I see it in other people I'm rather (and curiously) offended by it, even if at first I'm slightly impressed by the initial chutzpah. Someone I vaguely know, who was the partner of someone else I worked with, wrote something spiteful and basically quite maliciously bitchy about someone else, who I also vaguely know, for no apparent reason whatsoever.

Sometimes people do things that have no rhyme or reason, but suggesting someone is talentless and has a big nose (something that has often been levelled at me) is just rude and offensive. I personally think the person who was insulted is very talented and I find her big nose quite attractive.

Absolute Inaccurate Gits

I’ve taken to listening to Absolute 80s at the moment because I figure there’s a good chance I will hear something that’s quite good (and a really goiod chance I'll hear something vomit-inducing and cheesy). This radio station prides itself on the fact that you will never hear the same record twice in one day – well, they have 10 years worth of records to ensure that – however this boast obviously doesn’t include Nik Kershaw as I have heard Wouldn’t it be Good twice already today and I’ve only been sitting here since midday.


  • I have just started reading A Stroke of Swedes 1; I am, I suppose, entering into new territory; however, as the second book was largely completely different from the TV series that’s already happened.
  • Frankel won again today. Henry Cecil has been one of my proper heroes for about 35 years or so; he’s got cancer; he comes across as a rich twot and probably has nothing in common with me apart from a love of his horses; but I do hope he has a long remission and that Frankel remains the best racehorse ever because that would be a fitting epitaph for the trainer.
  • Today I have contemplated trying to make cider (there must be something we can do with all the very bland but plentiful amount of apples on our tree); paneer koftas and more pizzas.
  • Piebald soup

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