paul newman; great guy

I was very sad to learn about Paul Newman passing away. He’s always been a bit of a hero to me and a wrote a tribute to him back on 29 May last year when he announced his retirement from acting, as his illness began to take hold. I think I said it all then. Great guy.



strange guys

C’s over in the UK spending a few days with E and the boys before heading home on the same flight as our next house guests, our old friends the Worthies. I’ve been busy getting the pool de-algified, the garden strimmed and getting on with my unromantic anniversary gift to C, re-decorating the lounge whilst she’s away. It’s not quite as bad as buying a set of pans but it’s hardly a love token. I’m a crap husband.

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Believe it or not today is our 35th wedding anniversary. And I only went and failed to get C a present or a card. I am not the most romantic of guys, as I’ve admitted previously, but this was pretty dismal. C got me a card of course ( a charming one) but to make matters worse our daughter R took the trouble to make us a card using a photo of herself toasting our achievement with a glass of wine. Plus, she’d written the whole card for us in Italian which she’d translated herself and it was just lovely (in case you hadn’t picked it up from previous postings R has Down’s Syndrome).¬† I felt shamed. What’s more I can’t even take C out for lunch or dinner today as she’s spending a few days with daughter E and S and our grandsons and we were heading out to the airport by mid-morning. I’d better find/do something in the next couple of days to make up for it. And I was talking about Nick Faldo’s self-centredness…


faldo; captain not very sensible?

I’m not sure Faldo’s going to come through as a successful European team captain as we look forward to the final day of the Ryder Cup. He’s been an odd choice to me and he’s done very little so far during the event that’s impressive or inspirational.

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a week in the life of pasta paulie

Well it’s been one of those weeks. I was only writing a few days ago about how pleased we were with the extensive repairs to the extension and how good the house was now looking. Then earlier this week I noticed that a crack, albeit slight, had reappeared on both sides of the extension. Groan. It may be just settlement but we’ll see. Knowing our luck we’ll wake up one morning with the dining room in the pool. Continue reading

i wish i’d never bought…..

When I was 16 a friend of mine had been on a visit to Carnaby St (and bear in mind this was the swinging 60’s) and had come back with a very cool pair of flared hipsters with big leather belt. Sounds unlikely, and very Austin Powers, but these were the thing for blokes to wear. And I really wanted a pair. So off I toddled to Blackpool’s equivalent of trendy boutique street (one shop) and blew all my savings on a pair of flared hipsters made from bold orange corduroy.

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bill and jerry; i scream

Well I came across the latest ad from Microsoft featuring Bill Gates and Jerry Seinfeld set in a discount shoe shop. I think it’s about creating a new, more friendly face for the software giant. More Apple-like in fact. I can’t decide if I like it because of its cleverness or hate it for the same reason. It’s a bit like watching a mini Twin Peaks, decidedly odd but strangely intriguing. So 6 out of 10. I read they paid Seinfeld $10m for the work. Decide for yourself if you think big M got their money’s worth (and check out the family ad that follows in the series too – this could become a cult thing):

Boy can that Bill act.


ps I read this morning that the ads have been cancelled after two weeks – apparently they were meant to be promoting windows vista which wasn’t mentioned once. ha! and instead of promoting a new image for Microsoft, the use of seinfeld (whose tv show ended years ago) only served to confirm how dated the brand is. still it was only $10m eh!