barclaydave

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Month: June, 2013

Set the controls for the heart of the sun

Space travel has been a huge fascination throughout my life, from about the age of 7, when Yuri Gagarin became the first human to circumnavigate the planet, all the way through the space walks, moon landings, Star Trek, Black Hole right to Star Wars. Amazing times, films and tales of adventurers. It’s probably no surprise, then, to learn I loved Blake’s 7 and Red Dwarf. Sure the sets used to move but that wasn’t the point of these series. I couldn’t get enough of space and space travel. When the space shuttle launches were shown in the UK I’d be watching them. When that shuttle exploded I watched it horrified. When bookings were being taken for the first space hotel I checked it out. Had I been able to pay the deposit I’d have booked, there and then.

Now, I’m carrying too much excess weight, on my frame and mentally, to pass the physical. Shame really as the stars, planets orbiting them and our own solar system still have me enthralled. Is it any wonder, then, that I’ve written blogs about space? Our objections burst against the vastness of space and distances measured in light years. That is the distance light travels in a year, and light travels faster than sound, it has been measured at just a fraction under 300 million metres per second, do the math and you find that equates to 18 billion metres per minute etc. fantastic distances already, change it to Kilometers and it is still amazing, 300,000 Kilometers per second, 18 million Km per minute and so on. Awesome speed/distance relationship. That shows why space is measured in light years. The nearest system to us is so distant it doesn’t bear thinking of unless we can develop engines travelling at light speed, or close to it. Or cryo chambers to freeze astronauts to allow travel at current speeds without the need for more than 2 people at a time to fly the craft.

Imagine the possibilities, if we are launching from the planet then gravity has to be beaten to get into space, if we can build space stations in space then why not huge space ships, as per the vision of Gene Roddenberry, not subject to gravity then size would be no barrier, shuttle craft could be added to explore planets.

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Is there life on Mars?

We all know that Mars cannot sustain human life, it may have been able to at one time but no more. However, can anyone really believe we are alone in the universe? The fact is, there are millions of stars out there any one of them could have a planet within their system which is not only capable of supporting life but does so.

If we cannot have peace between races, religions and even brothers, what makes us think that any visitor from beyond this galaxy will come in peace? Isn’t it more likely that they will arrive to add us to their empire and enslave survivors of the war for domination?

As sophisticated as our weapons have become, isn’t it likely these would be like the weapons used by the Natives of the Americas against the Spanish, or like the Maoris against the British? Any race capable of light speed travel will have weapons far superior to our own, unless (this seems unlikely) they have abolished conflict and embraced peace.

Why does there have to be conflict? The entire universe is expanding, along with the galaxies within it. This is bound to be the result of a violent outburst somewhere in the past. All of Nature is violent, for the strong to survive they will sacrifice the weak, the young, the elderly, the sick and the dying. Why are we going against Nature trying to keep alive those too weak to survive on their own? In a word, Humanity! That’s what makes us different to every other species, personally I think it’s a good thing we are doing.

If anyone reading this has any comments to make on this or any other blog I’ve posted, I’d be glad to hear you. We’re all different, but we’re all the same in so many respects. If you cut anyone of us, regardless of appearance, hair or skin colour, the blood is either bright red or dark red. We need to accept these facts regardless of whether we agree or disagree with their religion, beliefs, or anything else. Maybe then we can find true peace and spread the medicines to those whose need is the greatest, feed everyone on the planet regardless of location. End crime, war and greed; which isn’t going to be easy; and get along with our neighbours.

I sit and watch the children play

Things were never like this when I was a child, we used to disappear round to friends houses and from there it was out on the street, playing hide ‘n’ seek, soldier games, cowboys and Indians or whatever was the big show at the time. Adults never bothered us even late on when we were heading home. Changed days now, I’m not saying that paedophiles are anything new, but there didn’t seem to be as many when I was playing out in the 50’s and 60’s. They seem to be crawling out of the woodwork these days, and even people you’d never have suspected are being found out, going for trial and getting custodial sentences.

The sentences, however, seem to be a complete joke. Still, I suppose it is a start. Personally, I’d castrate them, after all they are depriving children of a decent childhood which prepares them for adult life. All the web sites promoting under age pornography should be heavily monitored until all the paedophiles are taken off the streets.

On a lighter note, I recently found out that there’s a lot going on behind the scenes at BT, they still have the call centre where I used to work, but most of their call centres are in India which is giving rise to more complaints than they were getting when I worked there. In 2008 they were receiving 200+ complaints a day, because the call centre staff didn’t understand the accents, couldn’t have a laugh because English isn’t their first language.

I found that out myself when I had the misfortune to call regarding a fault at 2a.m., I told the advisor after 30 minutes of being treated like a complete moron, that I’d leave it, thanked him for his help and hung up. I was half way to the kitchen when he rang back telling me we’d been cut off. After reading the riot act to him the lights started going on upstairs so I thanked him for waking everyone up and, for the second time, terminated the call.

I’m not saying they don’t know what they’re doing, that would give the wrong impression completely as they are all highly trained and competent. They have difficulty understanding English when spoken with any kind of accent whatever. That is my only complaint about offshore staff, it has nothing to do with the colour of their skin, their behaviour pattern stems from following a script and I think, although I might be wrong, that if they don’t understand an answer they go back a couple of questions and start from there.

Could this be the reason behind so many companies today advertising UK call centres only?

I’m waiting on a friend

Monday is back again, 3:15 in the morning and I’m still wide awake, had a shower, had milk and cookies, so what is wrong with me? I don’t see the point in going to bed and tossing and turning, if I do that for 15 minutes I get out of bed and find things to do. Is this unusual?

Just as I was about to put some jokes on here I remembered this is a family blog and adult themed humour is therefore inappropriate. However, I would like to say to anyone reading this who is being bullied for being different, be proud of who you are. In the immortal words of the Irish poet and playwright, Oscar Wilde, “the only thing worse than being talked about, is not being talked about” most bullies are scared so if you get the chance to get one alone and confront him, or her, chances are they’ll back down and walk away. Just remember, you’re better than them so no violence or snide comments and they won’t know what just happened when you walk away.

I think it’s time for meds and maybe then I can go to bed and sleep, not banking on it yet. Enjoy this Monday, Wimbledon tennis starts today, and I hope you have a good day whatever you’re doing.

Boy you been a naughty girl

Why is it that whenever a group of girls get together nowadays they can cause more trouble than lads? Is it down to the blurring (no bad thing, IMHO) of traditional roles and values? Or possibly down to the abuse of alcohol starting much earlier with girls than it used to?

Maybe it’s a combination of both with evolution, after all we’re not standing still, we are always evolving, becoming stronger (in theory, at least). If there were never any alpha females before, we certainly have more than enough now. Women, who have been seen as the tender ones, taking care of home and hearth for the hunter gatherer male, are coming out into the wide world. No longer barefoot and pregnant, tied to the kitchen sink, woman are moving to take their, rightful, place alongside the men, shoulder to shoulder struggling together. This took millennia to happen but now it seems to be gathering momentum and women (not all merely a small percentage) seem to be acting up worse than the male of the species.

Could this be the reason reality tv, depicting the worst of human behaviour, is getting huge viewing figures around the globe? Natural curiosity has never been so easy to satisfy, yet we seem to enjoy watching programs such as bad boys, jail, and other such shows which depict behaviour at its worst. To go back to my original question, not so long ago women could be found in groups with lads, perhaps even egging the lads on, but never getting involved themselves, apart from the occasional cat fight. These days we hear of gangs of girls going out and attacking men. They seem to be following the age old pattern of men learning to hunt by going out in gangs. Where the gangs would stalk and hunt prey in days gone by when the animals were wild, these days there aren’t any animals close enough so the gangs fight each other, now the women are joining in. Where is it going to stop? I think it will keep feeding off itself until we can evolve beyond this phase, given it’s taken millennia to get here it could take millennia to move beyond this.

Dripping from a dead dogs eye

I’m sitting wondering where the time goes, seems like I got out of bed 5 minutes ago, but that was almost 2 hours ago. My coffee has gone cold, milk has gone warm (yuk to both) and still I sit here writing. I decided to write another entry since I was busy reading several good ones from others that I follow, however, time is running away from me and I’ve got an appointment to keep in 2 hours time.

No time to gather my thoughts really, far less get them on here, it was a good idea at the time, will allow my thoughts to unravel and jump back into the fray again. If anyone reading this is a student then you might find thebookybunhead interesting, I know I do, she gets you thinking and sometimes there’s just no answer. Isn’t that the joy of thoughts and brainstorming?

In my time of dying

I don’t want anyone feeling sad when I leave this mortal coil to join the great gig in the sky. Life is a prelude, not all there is (at least I hope so, but we’ll never know until we die). I may not follow any prescribed religion but I’m an agnostic not an atheist. Who knows, maybe the atheists will be proved right in the end but by then we’ll be gone and past caring. I believe there is a higher being, whether you call Him God, or by any other name is immaterial. I also believe in reincarnation, we are born to learn lessons, live peaceful lives and accept we are all different. The way we live this life will decide if, and when, we are reborn. Time is a concept we use to measure the passage of the seasons, do animals have any notion, or need of, time? I think not.

I hope I’ve made fewer mistakes this time around, and won’t come back too soon. If I return here at all. I know my beliefs are personal to me, which is why I will not try to push them onto others. There have been too many wars fought in the name of religion and, if God is a pacifist as it states in the Bible and the Quran then why have Christians and Muslims fought each other for so long? Since the Middle Ages, wars have been fought between the two religions, which, as far as I can see, both preach peace and frown on anyone taking the life of another.

There have been wars, and conflicts, between different Christian religions as well. Can anyone please tell me why we have to create more powerful weapons, just to stockpile them and hope they never get used? Seems to me, if the technology was put into worthwhile projects, poverty and hunger could become things of the past. Does anyone else share my views on this, or am I just a voice crying in the wilderness?

Dear landlord

Why is it so much trouble to match up good tenants with decent landlords? I’m not talking about myself, I’m a good tenant and I’ve got a brilliant landlord. Recently, I had the neighbours from hell living next door, not sure what the landlord is really like but he’s never offered to put right the damage his tenants caused, or to clear their mess away from my back yard. They broke the gate down so they could take my bins, and one from downstairs, into the back lane and set them on fire. My landlord replaced the green bin, as the council charged for this to be done. A week after I had taken delivery this was set on fire. All the bins they’d set alight in the back lane, along with the tyres and other assorted rubbish was all unceremoniously stacked in my back yard by the fire brigade, the neighbours thought it would be good to dump their cider and lager bottles in the yard as well. The council have stated that if I want this removed I’ll have to pay for it to be taken.

Everyone worries about upsetting the criminal and their human rights, no-one thinks of the rights of the victim. I feel like today would be a good day for all the victims of crime to shout with one voice ENOUGH, we deserve to be treated better than the idiots who have hurt us, robbed us, stabbed us, shot us, ignored OUR rights as human beings for far too long and we demand to be treated with dignity, if not respect, and for the waste left behind by those CRIMINALS to be removed free of charge.

I pity the poor immigrant

Nowadays there are a few problems with migration, biggest cause? Finance (IMHO) most of the West are still suffering because of the collapse of the banking industry in 2008, and the subsequent bail out instigated by the governments of the time.

But why do I pity the immigrant? We needed action to stop immigrants, who contributed nothing to our economy, coming over and claiming state benefits, along with priority housing, cash for gas and electricity which us natives didn’t receive, even those who had worked for decades.

Tensions were beginning to run high, even before the government decided to cap benefits across the board. Problems arose from this because they didn’t think it through (surprise surprise) and people on benefits in the most expensive areas are losing out, becoming homeless, and in one instance, a mother killed herself rather than live on the streets. Her crime? Living in the home she had shared with her husband since they got married. A house full of happy memories where their children had grown up, and where her husband sadly died.

People like me, suffering from a mental illness, are finding that this government is determined to force us to work for benefit. Not taking things like personal hygiene, getting dressed, or anything else into consideration. There are days, sometimes 3 or more at a time when I will not get out of bed, I don’t wash, I can only shower when someone comes over to help me. I will not answer the phone or the door unless I’m expecting someone to call or I know who is calling me. I may get out of bed, on the days I do get up, at 8 o’clock but I tend to sit around, naked, until I get too cold and then I put some clothes on. Because the weather has turned warm I often sit naked from the time I get up till I go to bed. How would an employer treat me were I to arrive for an interview wearing nothing? If I bothered to turn up at all. Also, due to living alone, if I can’t be bothered to take my meds, I won’t, so all I think about is how to commit suicide without struggling for breath, or deciding that maybe today isn’t the best day to die and struggling to undo the noose or move out of the way of the train.

How the west was won

It amazes me how we, as a race of beings, have survived for so long. Since time began there have been wars, weapons have been made to cause maximum damage to personnel and property with minimum risk. We “damaged” the ozone layer by using CFC’s, now we seem hell bent on destroying what’s left of the fragile Arctic ice by allowing companies to drill for oil. The technology has arrived for the next breed of electric cars, mobile video-phones that roll up to take up no more space than a pen.

We can be self sufficient with renewable electricity, and convert everyone easily, so that we are no longer reliant on fossil fuels and gas. Wind and water generated electricity has 3 big advantages over oil, coal and coke, 1. They are renewable so will not run out, 2. They are clean, and 3. Apart from the initial outlay, they operate for pennies a day.

Governments don’t want to use renewable sources and it begs the question why? Are they in the pockets of the energy companies who want to keep prices high to inflate their profits? If anyone knows the answer please drop me a line (preferably with chocolate on it) on a stamped undressed elephant to the usual address on planet earth.