Shallow Puddles

Willy Lott's CottageWe’ve recently taken out a subscription to the Spectator.
One of the joys of this magazine is the weekly competition and at the beginning of the month readers were invited to invent proverbs that sound profound but have no meaning (although if you search hard enough you can find meaning in everything). The best entries contained just the promise of profound meaning. Thus my favourite is “the shallow puddle floods no meadows”. Other enigmatic sayings to commit to memory and use again are:
When you don’t know where you are going , every route is a shortcut.
The overcoat of deceit will not deter the lizard of oblivion.
Beware the bridge that stops halfway across.
A chiropodist will not remember you by the colour of your eyes.
Watch this space for shallow puddle usage


Small Country Independence

Scottish StandardBill Bonner on the 21st February wrote:
“Small states do a better job of controlling their government, their military forces and their debt. Not because they are smarter or more peaceful. But simply because there is less distance between the governed and their governors. Citizens can see what their leaders are up to. If they don’t approve, the politicians can be beaten in the next election, or in the street.
Independence for Scotland? Yes, it’s probably a good idea.”
But later Merryn Somerset-Webb, who lives in Edinburgh, took issue with the suggestion that small governments are, ceteris paribus, better than big ones: “If Scotland votes for independence it will be as a socialist nation, not a wealthy capitalist one. The result will be profound misery. I really don’t think it is something to wish for. It’s already a disaster in the making. What small countries actually do these days if they aren’t tax havens full of educated people (Switzerland) is indulge in one variety or the other of nepotism/theft/corruption/public sector crowding out, and then collapses.”
Bill Bonner then concedes the issue with “She’s probably right about that. Big country or small one, the ruling elite always wants as much mis-government as the country can afford – and often more!

Tick, Tock, Test your smoke alarm this weekend

clock meltedAt 2 a.m. on Sunday 27 October, the clocks will go back by one hour to signal the start of British Winter Time.
This year, Suffolk Fire and Rescue Service (SFRS) is encouraging residents to ‘Tick, Tock, Test’ – a memorable phrase which provides a catchy reminder to prompt everyone into action when changing timepieces throughout the home.
A working smoke alarm can buy the valuable time people need to get out, stay out and call 999. Figures show that people are more than four times as likely to die in a fire if they don’t have a working alarm.
Councillor Colin Spence, Suffolk County Council’s cabinet member for public protection said; “Tick, Tock, Test is straight talking, easy to remember and intrinsically links clock change weekend to testing your smoke alarm.
“A working smoke alarm is a proven life-saver and is absolutely essential in keeping you and your family safe. Worryingly, only half of all householders who own a smoke alarm say that they test it on a regular basis.
“Don’t take the chance on your family’s life. When you change your clock this weekend, please take a few seconds to test your smoke alarm.
By simply pushing the ‘test’ button, people could save the lives of their loved ones.”

No Slouch When it Comes to the Cheeseboard.”

Stilton_Cheese_06Damian Thompson rarely fails to produce an informed smile on Saturday mornings. Here is an extract from yesterday’s column in the Daily Telegraph:
How fascinating to learn yesterday that the health-conscious President Sarkozy of France took cheese off the menu while he was in office – “except when Angela Merkel was in town”, according to his head chef. This doesn’t strain credulity, I think we can agree. Mrs Merkel looks to me like an extremely determined cheese-eater; I can picture the glint of excitement in her eye as she digs into a ripe Elysée Camembert. She’s partial to British cheese, too. “You should have seen her scoop into the Stilton when she visited No 10,” says my Downing Street source. “It was like a JCB. Even the PM was impressed – and, believe me, he’s no slouch when it comes to the cheeseboard.”
The full column can be found on: