Crazy

It’s all gone a bit crazy. Even the sheep I encountered on the one permitted walk out of the house .. It’s a scene of peace in front of the lens. Behind the lens I am being stalked by a pack of hungry sheep waiting for a biscuit.

Dad you have done some crazy things but that one is up there”

No it wasn’t my sanest moment. I lost a challenge and my punishment was to bounce for five minutes on the trampoline. In a moment of madness I made myself a cup of tea to drink while bouncing. Yes I didn’t really think that through. Unfortunately I didn’t come to my senses until after the first bounce had deposited the said contents of the cup onto my T-shirt. Clearly the tea is not the only thing that I have lost.

Dad what on earth are you doing”

I had made a mistake on a post that I was writing for a couple of friends.

“Son where is the rubber (eraser), I’ve messed up and need to change something”

Dad your using your IPad”

Yes I know”

Tell me Dad your not going thinking about using a rubber on the screen.”

Staggeringly I was in a moment of utter craziness. I guess it’s a combination of a complete lack of sleep, trying to help with French homework and the general oddness which has descended on to us all. It really is an odd feeling. Like we are living in an episode of the X-Files merged with Monty Python and Bear Grylls.

But at least we can still smile about it. If anything the craziness helps fill the day. So let’s have one more piece of craziness.

Rory (A Guy Called Bloke) has come up with a new music challenge.

you are to create a playlist of 15 songs based upon a weekly theme.  All titles must be relevant to the theme itself – not the artists just the song titles. This week the theme is CRAZY TIMES…

So here goes (going to try and just include songs from my music collection).

  1. Crazy Train – Ozzy
  2. Psychotic Break – Jerry Cantrell
  3. Madhouse – Anthrax
  4. Stone Cold Crazy – Queen
  5. Am I Going Insane – Black Sabbath
  6. Eyes of the Insane – Slayer
  7. Inmates (Were all Crazy) – Alice Cooper
  8. Crazy – Nazareth
  9. Crazy Horses – The Osmonds yes that’s my only Osmonds song
  10. Shine on you crazy diamond – Pink Floyd
  11. Crazy – Aerosmith
  12. Moon Crazy – Blue Oyster Cult
  13. Crazy World – Scorpions
  14. You’re Crazy – Guns n Roses
  15. Psycho – Metal Church

Bee

Slightly unnerving BEEing (being) eyeballed by this woolly friend. Couldn’t work out if it was admiring my silky garden football skills or was waiting for a Rich Tea biscuit. I lived in footballing worship hope until a biscuit was handed over and the woolly one then walked off.

Not always but occasionally life balances itself out. This morning I finished my last bit of paid work before the company basically shuts down for a couple of months (maybe longer). So no money coming in. As I closed the work laptop the phone rang. It was the garage, they still can’t get the parts needed for my cars poorly braking system. They will keep trying but the repair work won’t happen much before May. That’s a bit of a result. Won’t BEE (be) using the car much at all and that’s one hefty bill kicked into the long grass.

Talking about long grass. Last year someone gave me a wild bee hotel. The poor souls are struggling here so I thought I would do my bit. A quiet corner in the garden has been allowed to go wild. To be factually correct that should have been described as – I have let a part of the badly overgrown garden to go even wilder than the rest of the mess…

Anyway in the wild corner I have carefully located the bee hotel. Still no little takers after many months. I remember my Dad telling me that the first bee you see in spring is probably looking for a new home. He was a stubborn Yorkshireman so I never dared to question his apicultural knowledge. So our first bee of the season arrived.

A bee clearly fixated on trying to squeeze under the back door and get into our house. I tried showing the bee the currently vacant and palatial hotel. As hard as I pointed at the hotel’s front door, the bee just ignored me. Even a little honey failed to entice the bee. UnBEElievable (Unbelievable)

My question to you. What is the bee phrase for ‘Sorry pal your not coming in here. This thing I’m pointing at is your free of charge new house. I will even feed you each day.”

Doll

Let’s see what we can find in our little part of this beautiful planet. Today it’s the village pond. Few will know it exists as it’s hidden well behind the church, backing onto farmland. Yes a footpath passes close by but if you stick to it then the water is hidden. To find the pond you need to venture off the path and slog your way through an overgrown and very muddy piece of land. Hard work but worth it.

Understandably today brought a catalogue of work event cancellations. Certainly the rest of March and April will be virtually workless. Probably May as well. Three months without pay really. But we are so fortunate. As a family we can just about survive until work picks up again. At least I will have a job after things stabilise. Many will not be that fortunate. My heart goes out to you if your in that position.

I can’t do anything about the lack of work. What I can do is to use the time it frees up to focus even more on our son. Like many kids he is concerned, frightened, confused… I need to use this time to try and make happy memories for him. And maybe me as well.

So lets see what we can squeeze out of this strange period in our life’s. Fun and good stuff might not necessarily be easy to find currently. But like the village pond, with a bit of hard work it must be there somewhere. We will find it and create memories.

The village pond always brings a smile. Its already a location which has helped form good memories. His old nursery had this thing about getting the kids to look after and care for various toys. One weekend our son was sent home with a doll in a beautiful white dress. He had to look after the doll, show her his home, care for her and record all this in her diary. He decided that he wanted to show the doll the village pond. We set off with him carefully cradling the doll. Unfortunately on the way our son accidentally dropped her in a cow pat. The poor doll was submerged, head first with just her legs sticking out of the smelly pile of poo. Our little four year olds son looked at the poor doll, then calmly at me and with a cheeky smile said the immortal words

“Dad what have you done….”

Yellow

Suddenly colour is returning to Yorkshire. Well one colour. Most definitely yellow. It is such a welcome sight after so many grey months. Takes your mind off other matters.

Need to be open and honest with son.

Dad whats the number of people with the virus now”

Officially its 750 but now they say up to 10000 may have it”

OMG I thought the experts said our approach was working well. How can they have got the figure so wrong”

“It’s down to testing. For some reason we only tested those with symptoms who had visited high risk countries. They didn’t seem to test if you had been abroad. Clearly they missed a lot of proper cases.”

“That sounds so stupid.”

“Yes it’s not great is it”

“Dad why hasn’t Boris closed the schools down yet”

“Apparently it’s on the basis of expert advice.”

Many other countries and regions have closed them down, won’t that be on expert advice as well”

“Apparently Boris and his experts think that school closures and banning public events is not based on the correct expert advice.”

What makes our advice better then”

Probably need to ask an expert about that. We seem to be saying that if schools are closed it’s pointless as the kids will mix in large numbers anyway. We also seem to be saying that if we stop people going to things like football and concerts then they will just go to smaller events. And they argue that smaller events are potentially worse sources of infection. Football has been stopped for a month now but that was not the government, they were happy for the matches to go ahead. It was the Football Authorities who stopped the games.”

“That sounds a bit dodgy. Surely Dad the point is to reduce the number of people you mix with. Schools, football, trains, buses and concerts are some of our biggest mixing areas.”

I bet they will eventually have to change their minds on some of these. But it is daft.”

I think a big part of it is that the last few governments have really cut back on the NHS and made child care more expensive. They don’t have enough doctors and nurses. If schools close then a lot of parents will not be able to go to work as they will need to look after their children. The NHS can’t cope with that now. I’ve also heard several in the government mention that shutting schools will hurt the economy.”

“So it’s about money then really”

“Probably is but they won’t say that. Easier to just tell people it’s expert advice.”

So how are they trying to control the virus if they don’t close things down.”

“It seems to be something called the herd. The Chief Doctor talked about needing at least 60% of the population to recover from the virus for the country to start to develop immunity from further outbreaks”

That’s the plan. Wow. So we are trying to get something like 40 to 50 million infected here. Going to be an awful lot of not very healthy or old people caught up in that. That’s not a good plan. Sounds like they have decided not to do anything. Rather have people keep making money than keep them safe.”

Totally agree. Surely locking stuff down for a couple of weeks will help dampen the virus down. At least push it into the summer months.

I’d rather take my chances in France or Germany. At least they are trying to still contain it.”

“Dad what’s the new rule about school and being ill. If I cough does that get me a week home isolation.”

Basically those are the new rules

“Well Dad. COUGH. COUGH. That should do it. Wake me about 11am on Monday.”

Well next week I will probably get the chance to check out more yellows. My zero hours contract is living up to it’s zero in the coming days. Next week I might get a couple of hours work at most. So the new sports car and beach apartment in Monte Carlo will have to wait a few more days. But it doesn’t matter in the scheme of things. It really doesn’t. More important things in life. As a much wiser blogger than me put it – it’s time to breathe….

Update

Two hours later news broke that the government has reluctantly banned large public events. Not on health grounds but to relieve pressure on emergency services. I guess the real reason was the events were getting cancelled by the organisers anyway and the government didn’t want to be seen to be dithering.

Panic buying

Let’s be safe out there people … it’s madness.

The news is either full of stories about virus doom or virus induced panic buying. I kinda miss the ‘Britain has gone brexit bonkers’ stories now. So with the images of empty shop shelves, I ventured out to the supermarket with a certain amount of trepidation. My extensive survival prep shopping list was a loaf of bread, a pack of Curly Wurlies, a bottle of milk and tea. That will surely tide us through the end of days.

I arrived at 8.40am which normally ensures that I have the shop to myself apart from the three shop assistants. Not this morning. The car park was heaving. Is it the day before Christmas? Inside was not much better. Rammed with shoppers. Not seen a crowd like this since the ‘Everything for a Pound’ Store had a sale.

It was bizarre watching the frantic shopping. Trolleys rammed full. So many seemingly sensible people falling into the panic buying madness. But this was a very Yorkshire panic. People still had time amongst the panic to stop and talk about the weather. In other parts of the country items like toilet paper, hand gel and paracetamol tablets have been stripped as if consumed by a plague of locusts. Here those items were still well stocked. In fact I didn’t see anyone buying them. No the items of panic choice here were different

  • The saver pack of soap bars (4 for a £1)
  • Cadbury’s Chocolate
  • Tins of mushy peas (one chap had a basket filled with just these)
  • Custard powder
  • Cheese
  • Beer, lager and wine.

I have to say that if I was going to panic buy I would rather stock up on £100 worth of beer and chocolate rather than 50 rolls of bog paper.

My hand basket was easily filled with my items until I arrived at the tea section. No Yorkshire Tea. No pigging Yorkshire Tea. Stripped bare. Oh the humanity. I had to buy another brand. Bloody philistines. The virus crisis is so much worse than I ever imagined. Stand by your pitchforks people.