Archive for September, 2015

Lunar eclipse 28 September 2015

September 28, 2015

I stayed up late, wrapped up, and went out into the garden at 02h20. I took a chair into the middle of the lawn and sat looking up at the moon. The sky was clear and I could see a sprinkling of stars. It was very quiet, although I could hear the hum of traffic from the main road, some distance away. The eclipse began to be noticeable at around 02h25 from my vantage point in the north east of England. I had to look south to observe it. By 02h35 about half of the moon was covered but I could detect no redness. By 02h45 only a third of the moon was showing. Eventually, there was a total eclipse of the moon at around 03h15 and by that time it was definitely glowing red. I was starting to get cold out there, so I packed up and came indoors to upload my photos and write this piece. Speak to you later, my dear blogophiles.

Lunar eclipse 28 September 2015

Lunar eclipse 28 September 2015


September 21, 2015

At the weekend I went down to London for a reunion with some old friends. I needed an overnight stay and I fixed that up on the internet. The hotel was fine and not too expensive, given central London prices. Anyway, I wanted to freshen up after my long train journey and so I looked around in the bathroom for some soap for my hands and face. Eventually I found a small tablet but it was in a flat, square cardboard box container. On the container was printed a description of the contents:

facial bar

How pretentious can you get? Speak to you later, my dear blogophiles.

Raspberries and salad cream

September 15, 2015

I bought some fresh raspberries at the supermarket the other day, and this evening I thought I would have some of them. So I got the package out of the fridge and put a good handful into a bowl. I then rummaged about for the tub of cream I thought I had bought, but could not find it. I think I actually forgot to buy any when I was shopping.

Although my search for the tub of double cream was unsuccessful, I did find a small bottle of salad cream in the fridge. I decided to try some with the raspberries, since I have never before had this combination. I figured that raspberries are often not especially sweet and in fact are frequently sharp. I figured that putting salad cream on them would be no more weird than putting it on tomatoes (which I sometimes do).

I therefore shot a reasonably liberal squirt of the salad cream onto my raspberries and sat down to eat the mixture. The taste was quite strange but not unpleasant, IMHO. So, I am thinking that I might try this again at some point in the future. Speak to you later, my dear blogophiles.

The common cold

September 13, 2015

I found out yesterday that a common cold virus is rampaging through the UK. One newspaper estimates around 10 million people have caught it. Given that the population of the UK is around 64 million, that works out at around 1 in 6 people. I have to tell you that I am one of the 10 million.

The medical description of a cold is that it is an infection of the Upper Respiratory Tract (URT). To pass the time, I have been thinking about how this URT malfunction might be distributed. One has to think in terms of population figures to get at this. So, for example, more people in the Tyneside and Newcastle area in the northeast of England have colds than do people living in the WHOLE of Scotland. Indeed, the number of people in Scotland who have colds is less than the population of Ipswich (in England).

The population of Greater Manchester is 2.5 million (2,500,000) which is roughly 35 times the population of Scotland. In Greater Manchester about 415k people have a cold now. So, the number of colds in Greater Manchester equates to half the population of Scotland. Incredible. Mind you, kilt-tremble could be developed as a measure of the severity of a cold. Obviously this index could only be obtained at the moment of sneezing.

Still, a variation of the Kilt-Tremble measure would have to be developed for Sassenachs south of the border; I am not suggesting for a moment that English people don kilts, since no cultural offence is intended towards the Scots. The English equivalent of Kilt-Tremble could easily be measured in women, providing they were wearing a short-ish pleated skirt. For the lads, this would involve a moment of cross-dressing in the research lab or doctor’s surgery. Of course, the extent to which the Heisenberg uncertainty principle would kick in cannot be predicted at this point [Heisenberg thing states, roughly speaking, that the act of observation may have an effect on that which is observed]. So some supplementary research may be required to follow up the extent to which Kilt-Tremble measurement amongst English males leads to subsequent transvestite tendencies. There is clearly the kernel of a Ph.D. research topic in this. Speak to you later, my dear blogophiles.