Sunday, June 26, 2011

The Inebriati.

The photo above shows the view along West Street towards Erith Town Centre; on the right you can see part of what used to be the Trafalgar pub, which was converted into flats about ten years ago. I recall visiting it on a couple of occasions before it closed down - it was rough. I hate seeing pubs turned into accommodation  but there are some times when there is no logical argument to keep going - and I think the Trafalgar was a case in point.

I have encountered the shell suited individual that I wrote about last week, a further two times this week.  Both times he was toting an outsized can of electric soup, and curiously was mounted on an ancient bicycle of indeterminate parentage, and accompanied by a vicious looking Staffie / Pit Bull type fighting monstrosity, which appeared to be little more than a collection of huge pointy teeth supported by four over muscled legs on a lead. The dog acted as the motive power, to pull both the bike and heavily sozzled chav wobbily along. Every time I see him, he's consuming gargantuan quantities of canned beverage that would be more appropriately classified as industrial cleaner, rather than anything one would wish to consume. I reckon when he turns up his toes (which I don't think will be too long in the future, if he keeps up his current lifestyle), if cremated he would go up like a Roman Candle, and probably take a week to put out. Conspiracy theorists have thought for decades that the world's political and economic directions are controlled my a shady cabal of financiers, religious leaders and politicians in a secret society called the Illuminati. If this is true, then the Happy Shopper version of that dreaded secret society must also exist in Erith. I have now formed the opinion that he's a senior mover and shaker in the shady secret cabal that actually run Erith - the Inebriati.

I have had a couple of items of feedback regarding the Maggot Sandwich - the most common of these being that people are occasionally  seeing two identical copies of some embedded videos. I have got to the bottom of this now; the entries display correctly in all "full fat" web browsers (Opera / Chrome / Konqueror / Firefox / Safari / IE) but there are occasional display errors on phone based browsers. Blogger does not formally support specific smart phone browsers such as Palm WebOS, or the Android platform. This seems to be where the problem lies. You may find errors when viewing on mobile devices. Unfortunately there is not a bundle I can do about this, other than log a support call with Blogger - which I have already done.

Further to my recent comments about the perilous state of the surface of Manor Road in Erith, I have now made formal representations to Bexley Council about the rapidly disintegrating road surface. Surprisingly, the day after I sent my Email, I received a personal message from a member of the highways team, assuring me that a Council Surveyor would be investigating the matter within a week of my original enquiry. I await to see the outcome with interest, and will report back accordingly.

The 2011 Chap Olympiad is almost upon us. Do consult the video below, which will give you a flavour of the event in previous years. It takes place on Saturday July 16th in Bloomsbury Square, London. You can read further details about the event by clicking here.

Erith Yacht Club have been carrying out a recruiting drive in Morrison's this week; I don't know how many new members they expect to sign up, as Erith is not exactly the kind of place where the locals take to the water. In years gone past you would only have found a local with a boat if they had won it as a prize on 3-2-1. I tried to join the club some years ago, when I took my Marine VHF radio licence examination there. They had (and for all I know still do) a rule that to be a member you have to own a yacht - no associate members are permitted, which I felt and still feel is rather short sighted, when you could recruit some willing volunteers to help out at events and to provide a general spare set of hands around the place. They do seem to be doing more to interact with the local community than before - it was always quite an insular group. I suppose that in order to justify the huge amount of money that has been donated to the club by various organisations, they have to offer something in return to the community.

Below are a couple of photos I have resurrected from the Pewty Acres archives; they were taken by Nick Jackson, and show me running my afternoon show on Radio Caroline back in May 1990. I only had this broadcasting slot for around a month. Thankfully I was soon moved to the midnight to 6am slot - which was far more to my taste, as it was far less formatted and controlled. Overnight I could pretty much play what I liked, and I concentrated on longer album tracks. I would feature a bands' more challenging and involved pieces that otherwise would be overlooked on mainstream stations. From the extensive and appreciative feedback I got from listeners, they certainly seemed to value the show - I got tons of positive feedback, letters and postcards from all all around the UK and mainland Europe. It was a long slot, and I also had to wake up the breakfast show DJ in plenty of time for him to take over. For much of the time this was an individual called Rico - a very popular on air personality with the listeners, but a total self obsessed pillock in person. He had an ego bigger than the ship, and was deeply in love with himself. One morning he could not get out of bed, so I covered for the first half hour of his show, explaining to the listeners that Rico was having trouble getting his ego through the studio door, and in the meantime I regaled the audience with tracks like "There's no-one quite like Grandma" by the St Winnifred's School Choir, "Deck of Cards by Wink Martindale, and The Wombling Song. Strangely enough I did not get told off by the office, and the self important tosser Rico was never late on air again.

I have been listening to 24/7 free radio station Laser Hot Hits quite a bit recently. You can visit their website here to listen online, or to find details of their frequencies and broadcast schedule. They play a wide variety of styles of music, with something pretty much assured to appeal to everyone. Do give them a try.

Don't forget that you can view my photo albums online via my Flickr account by clicking here. I would be interested in your opinions and feedback.

I commented last week on the sartorial faux pas made by some banker types near my office in Canary Wharf. The wearing of shorts in public, whilst not participating in sport is really just not on  it is the first slippery step in the downward spiral to chavness. You will find an instructive video clip below, featuring top Savile Row bespoke tailors Henry Poole & Co. They illustrate the correct art of dress for the contemporary person about town.

Now that the weather is finally improving, I have been noticing how many people are lathering themselves in fake tan. It is utterly stomach turning. I came out of Morrison's yesterday afternoon to see a young woman in her early 20's looking more akin to the colour of a piece of furniture - she was an orangey brown colour more often seen when coming from an open tin of Ronseal. Her entire skin seemed to be an utterly unreal, almost cartoonish hue - with the addition of around half a kilo of foundation slapped on her face, she looked like she had been bobbing for chips in a deep fat fryer. Horrid.

You can view the local real time weather situation for Erith by viewing the Erith weather station website here. Thanks to Bob G4MHJ.

The Maggot Sandwich now has had just a little over 35,000 unique and individual page views. These come from all around the world; mainly from Commonwealth countries, but also from pretty much everywhere - I am just waiting for my first hit from North Korea, but I am not holding my breath. Most of these visits are anonymous, but I can happily publicise one regular reader from the other side of the World - felicitations go out to Maggot Sandwich regular Siva, who lives and works in Banglaore, India. He's a guru in IT server virtualisation and all sorts of techie dark arts - he's been reading the blog, and making the occasional comment for some time now.

If you are a Maggot Sandwich reader and would like to be featured, please drop me a line, and I am sure that something suitable can be arranged.

There has been some discussion in the local press of late about the situation regarding Dartford; the general opinion is that the town is in a state of degeneration. The reasoning behind this is that the Bluewater and to a lesser extent the Lakeside shopping centres have sapped the customer traffic from Dartford Town Centre. I think that there is a level of resignedness that needs to be overcome in order to revamp and reinvigorate the powers that be; Dartford is not dead and buried, it currently just smells that way - dedication and effort can bring it back to where it should be, as the first county town in Kent - the initial place of note that one encounters when travelling from London.

The final video below is a graduation piece by a group of budding French CGI artists - it is an outstanding piece of work - they should be justifiably proud of the results of their efforts. Do make sure you expand the video to full screen to get the full cinematic effect. Have a watch, and post a comment below.


  1. Different! Well done(the video not the burgers!!)

  2. Hugh you knob, you were an anorak, a fan, not a presenter, thats why you got the late slot so less people would hear you. Don't try and big yourself up now, too many people who were there have computers too.
    See you around
    Rico the pillock