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Monday, 13 November 2006


On Saturday afternoon I accompanied bluemeanie on a shoe-shopping expedition. In one of the shops I was amazed to note this range of shoes called “your feet look gorgeous”. I look forward to the forthcoming range of women’s skirts and dresses named your bottom looks small.

Posted by bigblue on 13/11/2006 at 10:15 PM
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Sunday, 12 November 2006
Sainsburys Local

Sainsburys Local Oxted

Bluemeanie and I popped into the Sainsburys Local in Oxted last night. The opening hours are extended so I can see it will be a useful addition to the shops around here. Lately I had taken to driving to Westerham to the Co-Op in order to avoid Morrisons in Oxted.  However the experience was not all good:

This morning we went to the Remembrance Day Service in Oxted.

Posted by bigblue on 12/11/2006 at 09:59 PM
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Saturday, 11 November 2006


This is the obligatory November fireworks photograph.  Today is Rememberance Day, and a 13 year old pupil’s poem was chosen to lead the Armistice Day celebrations in London. The author read the following poem in Trafalgar Square this morning:

There Lie Forgotten Men

She stands there alone
At the edge of the silent place
And she is shocked
New wars brew and these forgotten men
Will play no part in them
The dead silence warn no ears but hers
In great halls, in moments of great decision
What they fought for is forsaken
And by day’s end new gravestones
Appear on the blood red ground
She finds what she seeks
‘Sgt John Malley Age 27’
His life brutally ended
And she stands by his grave
But he can give no answers
And she weeps for him
For the empty hole he left behind
And for the new emptiness
Soon to join the black chasm.
And her tears join the flood.

by Rebecca Sullivan

Posted by bigblue on 11/11/2006 at 09:22 PM
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Thursday, 09 November 2006
uh doh!


Bluemeanie asked me to pick up a dozen or two donuts from these guys this evening (on my way home from a work meeting). Unfortunately they were closed.

Posted by bigblue on 09/11/2006 at 09:21 PM
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Wednesday, 08 November 2006
The Tree


When I look at this photograph I don’t feel well.  Something to do with motion sickness. Apparently it is the same type of motion sickness as caused by playing certain video games: one can see motion but not feel it.

Posted by bigblue on 08/11/2006 at 09:55 PM
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Tuesday, 07 November 2006
Magic Orange Wheel


This is a different view of Sunday’s toadstool.  There were several toadstools but this one ended up the most photographed.  A nearby mushroom had bites in it (or perhaps bits that had been broken off).  A fly buzzed on and off this one: no doubt attracted by the unpleasant smell. Then, as I took this photograph I heard a couple behind me discussing how the mushroom is highly poisonous.  I began to worry that I had accidentally touched one of the mushrooms and shortly afterwards I decided to leave. But first I paid a quick visit to the restaurant to wash my hands thoroughly with soap and water.

Posted by bigblue on 07/11/2006 at 11:17 PM
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Monday, 06 November 2006
Box of Box Hill

box plant and fruit

This is a box plant with deliciously fragrant fuit, widely found on the hill of the same name in Surrey, England.  There are a wide variety of plants in the genus (Buxus).

Box Hill was used as an important setting in Jane Austin’s book Emma.

Posted by bigblue on 06/11/2006 at 09:19 PM
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Sunday, 05 November 2006


I mentioned the other day that since my recent trip to Wales I have been getting a steady stream of visitors to the site looking for information on magic mushrooms in Wales, despite the fact that I never found (or sought) any there. However the other day I did stumble across a few in Kent.

This is Amanita muscaria:

the original white-spotted red toadstool, it is one of the most recognizable mushrooms and is widely used in popular culture. Though it is generally considered poisonous, Amanita muscaria is otherwise famed for its hallucinogenic properties.

There is quite a bit of information in the wikipedia entry about the psychoactive properties of this mushroom, including that it was sometimes the practice of the shaman to consume the mushroom, and the rest of the tribe to consume his urine. I’m sure this was an uplifting spiritual experience - and nothing like Dirty Sanchez.  Incidentally, wikipedia understates the poisonous qualities of the mushroom in comparison to various other sites I browsed.

While I am in a rare linking mood, why not read Tony on Why Borat is not funny, and a review of the forthcoming book The No Asshole Rule. Unfortunately the book only comes out early next year, so hopefully will not be of much practical use for me. I was interested in sig’s third point (or question) about culture. It’s not a simple US vs European culture thing: one of my best clients was an American company which had an open and colleagial culture which valued and empowered people throughout the organisation.

Posted by bigblue on 05/11/2006 at 02:31 PM
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