Saturday, 26 September 2009

My blog's gone down the bog

....An expression I nicked from my father, but which I think is kind of fitting for my current mood!

Oh dear. As I was saying over on Steve's blog I have kind of, or rather I HAVE, lost the will and energy to blog recently. Perhaps this is a blogging mid-life crisis!

Basically my job is taking up a lot of my time and energy leaving me with little space for other stuff. Weekends are too short and there always seem to be massive amounts of things to do. I'm tired in the evenings when I get home and then I have to do stuff like marking and preparing. Mmmm all sounds too familiar, eh?? But it's true. And in addition to all of that, I've also been overwhelmed with a real "can't be bothered" attitude of late - I'm finding it pretty hard to muster up both the inclination and enthusiasm to write blog posts at present. Sound like a right old drama queen don't I? Oh woe is me!

I have to add (and this is going to sound quite self-pitying and maybe even childish) the fact that I haven't been receiving many comments from other bloggers has also been something of a determining factor. It feels like what I'm writing is a bit of a waste of time and no-one's interested. A lot of people who used to stop by and leave welcome contributions seem to have vanished into the ether. Conversely, some other bloggers I know receive tons of comments/feedback on their sites, which has left me thinking that the subject matter and content of my own site is a no-no to most and perhaps even boring. On the other hand, there ARE other blogs out there which also receive 0 comments, so I guess I should take solace from the fact that I'm not the only one. These people soldier on and write posts on what they know and love, regardless! They don't give a damn!! And of course just because people don't leave comments on your site doesn't mean they're not reading your stuff. All of this is probably a case of Cheeser paranoia. But it hasn't helped and I do feel quite disheartened...!

SO. I don't want to shut down this old (or rather fairly new) blog. So what I'm proposing is to carry on writing posts but just a bit less regularly. Perhaps once a month. I don't want to go away entirely!

Have a great weekend whatever you're up to...

OC xx

Saturday, 12 September 2009

2, 4, 6, 8 MOTORWAY

Today, I had my first driving lesson on the motorway!! Wooohooo!! Erm, hang on, I hear you say, but he's passed his driving test already hasn't he? So what's he doing taking more lessons?? Well, when I was learning with my instructor we never got to the "going on the motorway" stage as it's not part of the whole requirements thing needed to take your test. So my instructor kindly offered to give me a few extra lessons to get me accustomed to life in the fast lane...

I must say I was rather nervous about it - it's a different ball game to going at 30mph max in the middle of a town or city. Actually, confession time folks. A couple of weeks ago on the Bank Holiday just gone - owing to the gorgeousness of the weather - me and Gustavo drove down to Brighton via the motorway. So that was actually my first official experience on the speedway. Today it started to make more sense...

What do I like about motorway driving?

1. The speed with which you can get from A to B. It's kind of exhilarating, as well as useful, to be zipping along so quickly.
2. It's pretty straightforward in terms of driving i.e. no traffic lights, roundabouts, T junctions etc. (Kind of stating the obvious really, aren't I?!?)

What don't I like about it?
1. Somewhat paradoxically, the speed with which one is required to drive and the speed of the cars around you. I know you can't get away from it, but it's a bit scary.
2. Moving out into a faster lane when there are cars very close to you. You've just got to use your common sense, give lots of time, indicate to the drivers behind you and then do it (as my instructor kept telling me). But I still find it a bit nerve-wracking.
3. The thought of having an accident because of 1. and 2.
4. It's rather mundane and monotonous to be driving along a continuous strip of road without much decent to look at.
5. It can get pretty tiring having to concentrate whilst driving for long periods. All I can say is thank God for Little Chef.

Erm. That's about it. But I'm sure it all comes down to practise really - it's a confidence booster. Next month I'm planning on making a couple of trips to see friends which will most likely entail using the motorway, so it can't be avoided forever...

Meanwhile I started teaching my new classes at college this week. Most of the students seem pleasant although it's still early days (!) and I haven't met them all yet! Lots of work and prep to do - oh what a life!!

Anyway, as Calvin Harris (or rather his diva singer) puts it so eloquently, I'm gonna buy shoes and I'm ready for the weekend! (Well, actually, the first part isn't strictly true...)

Have a good one everyone....

OC x

Saturday, 5 September 2009

The Cheeser's Choice: Calvin Harris - Ready For The Weekend

Okay, so it's been out a little while, but I've just downloaded Calvin Harris' Ready For The Weekend album and it's ace!

And check out the clever vid for the title track (just ignore the silly "OUT NOW!!!" banner - I couldn't find another version):

Bye bye Big Bro

So what did we all think about Sophie winning the latest Big Brother??

Against my better judgement, I got sucked into the BB vortex this time round and ended up watching quite a lot of it. There were some entertaining individuals in there, admittedly - Rodrigo the Brazilian Barbie with a short temper; Charlie the camp Geordie who enjoyed a decidedly tempestuous love/hate relationship with Rodrigo; the camper-still David (God though, his voice was seriously grating) ... erm, you'd be forgiven for thinking that the only inhabitants of the house were a load of gay men. There was also of course Noireen (I thought she was a horrible, cold bitch, quite frankly), the weird Sree, the horribly aggressive and truculent Marcus, the tatooed, shave-headed and sometimes motherly Lisa (and another sexual deviant!) and the way out and funkily dressed Siavash. Talking of the latter, I actually liked him a lot and he would have been my first choice for winner. Yet somehow I never felt like we got to know the "real" Siavash - he was a little too laid back and detached about everything for his own good and sometimes I got the impression he was a bit of a fence sitter - a stronger personality needed to come to the fore. And as for Sophie - well she was fun and quite sweet but I'd say her personality was even less dazzling - and that's not me trying to be bitchy - there just didn't seem to be enough character there to warrant her winning. I reckon, anyway.

Meanwhile, you might or might not be aware that BB is due to be axed - or to be more precise, Channel 4 has made the decision that the 2010 series will be the last and they won't be renewing their contract with the show beyond that. Lost Boy has already written an incisive post on this topic ... So I wonder what C4 will come up with by way of a replacement, then? Suggestions, anyone??

The Legs and Co spot: Rumour Has It

I think Matty might like this one. Yes, it's time for another Legs and Co post - this time the veritable dancing divas from TOTP present their interpretation of Donna Summer's "Rumour Has It". VERY Coronation Street. What would Ms Summer say if she saw this?!

Amsterdam piccies #1

Okay, I'm BACK. Yes I've pulled my finger out and endeavoured to rise above my recent feelings of blogging lethargy in order to bring you a PROPER blog post. And I've got internet back at home! Yay! So really I haven't got much excuse, have I?!! Except that thing called work keeps rearing its head... Anyway I thought it was high time I showed you some pictorial evidence of my exploits in Amsterdam last month. So here goes...

A fascinating way to start off the pictorial journey .... it's a train!! A Dutch one, that is. You've gotta admit they're different to our English counterparts. They're double deckers, for a start. Rather funky design, I think. We could do with some over here as it would definitely help solve the overcrowding on trains problem... Anyway this was right at the start of our holiday, getting the train from Schipol airport to the centre of Amsterdam.

Once we'd arrived in Amsterdam proper, what better way to start things off than a boat trip round the fair city?? I've visted 7 or 8 times previously and never done the canal ride thing.

Houses as seen from the boat. I just love the style of building in Amsterdam. I'd be a bit scared parking my car right next to a canal though.

More lovely tall Dutch buldings. My Dad lives in one actually. Lucky him.

A famous couple of buildings, apparently. Can't remember what they are, though??

Another tall building. Obsessed? Moi?

This rather odd looking construction (the green thing on the right) is called Nemo. It's a Science Museum for kiddies (but of course adults can visit too) with lots of fun interactive exhibits. And you can actually go up on the roof, have a drinkie and take in the view!

See? A nice place to sip a cocktail and survey the scenery...

The Town Hall in Amsterdam in the very famous Dam Square. Peter Davison once ran across the square in a certain Dr Who story, with rice crispies all over his face, frightening the local Dutch people. Had to put in a Who reference somewhere, didn't I??

Gustavo in front of monument, Dam Square.

And now...for some "interesting" exhibits. Yes ladies and gentlemen, we visited the "legendary" Erotic Museum in the Red Light District. Well, we had time to kill and it was a mere 5 Euros entry fee. I'm bad at making excuses...Now, what does the above sculpture remind you of??

One of the more tasteful paintings in the place. Honestly!!

An interesting way to put out one's washing...

Madge's legendary "Sex" book managed to get inclusion!

Loved this naughty master and maid tableau...

A lady of the night, looking, frankly, very bored. No clients today then, love??

A hunk bathes his honey. At least that's what it looks like...

She's a bit scarey-looking though, isn't she? Perhaps she's annoyed that he forgot the Radox bubble bath.

Who's the hunk on the left and the vixen on the right??

Oh my! The vixen now has a different face!! And what a fetching outfit!!

Hang on - it's all change again...

An unusual way to ride a bike...I should really delete this blog might get shut down...

Phew! That's QUITE enough rudeness. Here we find some lovely flowerbeds in the famous Vondel Park.

A lovely bandstand.

Another day, we (me, Gustavo and my Dad) did a long bike ride to some places on the outskirts of Amsterdam, then went on to the Dutch coast! On the way we saw these VERY cute Dutch houses....

Kind of like a Dutch Stepford I think. By the way if you're wondering about the weird green hue on the camera, I changed the colour and forgot to switch it the place a suitably eerie, dream-like look though, doesn't it?!

Gustavo lying near a field of sheep. As you do.

One of the aforementioned sheep. Awwww. I bet Amanda likes this one, given her tendency to take in stray cats!!

Back in Amsteram - a classic view from a bridge and me with a not so classic protruding belly.

Lovely Chinese restaurant down near the Central Station.

The Central Library in Amsterdam or Openbare Bibliotheek as it's known, from where I brought you this post. Love the modern, open plan design inside and groovy lights!!

More groovy lights!!

Yet more groovy lights and a downstairs bit.

Okay, that's it for now...I shall return shortly with some more Amsterdam piccies....!!

OC xx

Thursday, 3 September 2009


Ahem, ahem. The Cheeser is clearing his throat in humble fashion. And he'd quite like to apologise for the recent lack of posts. AGAIN!! Real life just keeps getting in THE WAY.

I have been meaning to post up more text on my Amsterdam exploits, plus photos and other stuff to boot, but just don't seem to be able to get round to it. Dare I say that there have been times when I haven't been able to sum up the energy to blog?! But I will be back shortly. Promise...