Life, The Universe and Small Things all covered in one friendly blog.
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24 July, 2009

Swine Flu Help Line

Thank goodness for our government, what would we do without them.
Every newspaper, radio and TV news, gossiping queue in the co-op and gaggle of parents outside the school gates is talking about swine flu. I defy you to find anyone who does not know all about it, yet yesterday the government launched a call centre staffed by 1500 people to give help and advice. Could this be the start of the end for GPs in the UK. Why would we need them if you can be safely diagnosed by a call centre, which no doubt in time can be outsources to India.

If you phone the help line this is what you might hear :-

Click, Hello, welcome to the government swine flu help line provided to you free by your government, which cares about you. Calls are free from most land lines although some operators may charge. Calls from mobiles will be charged at you contracted rate and may cost a considerable amount, something your government is trying to change for you.
While every effort is made to deal with your call promptly there may be times when the volume of calls will necessitate a short wait, please be aware that this wait would be longer under a government run by David Cameron.

In order that we can route your call to the appropriate person please select from the following list.
PRESS 1 if you would like to speak to one of our totally untrained advisor who can read to you from a hastily prepared script.
PRESS 2 if you think that you have swine flue and would like to be sent a prescription for an anti-viral that will not make you better but has side effects that will take your mind off of the flu.
PRESS 3 if you phoned this line for something to do.

PRESS 4 if you phoned this line just because you saw the number in The Sun or Daily Mail.
PRESS 5 for everything else.

After your selection you may get :-

Thank you, all our advisors are busy dealing with other people at the moment but as your government cares about your welfare all callers will be answered in sequence, you are caller number five thousand nine hundred and three. We know your call is important to you, your government has trained over 1500 staff to read to you from their screen and you will be connected to one of these otherwise unemployable people as soon as possible.
(long pause)

We are sorry for the delay and thank you for your patience, if you would like to listen to the calming voice of Gordon Brown telling you not to worry about swine flue, rather than Eine kleine Nachtmusik please press 1 now.

(long pause)

Sorry for the continued delay, you are now caller five thousand nine hundred and four, your call will be answered as soon as possible.

Of course there is another option, if you think you have the flu, go to bed, drink plenty of water, take paracetamol and if you experiece difficulty breathing call an ambulance. There you go, free advice and you didn't even have to wait for it.

22 July, 2009

Swine Flu

Yes, yes , OK I get the message, a lot of people are getting the flu and it can be nasty, now for the love of sanity give it a break will you.

Am I the only one who thinks that we have heard enough, you either catch it or you don't, there is not a lot you can do about it; no really there isn't.
A couple of weekends ago I thought I had it, crikey did I feel grog, then a few days later, right as rain. I think its unlikely that is what I had, I mean it was over way too fast but should I phone someone, fill in a web page or something so they can correct the statistics.
Every day they tell us how many people have it, but they might be wrong, what if I am not counted and I did have it, or if I am counted and I didn't have it, that would totally mess up the news. Its such a worry.

I am not the only one worrying, some people are taking it to extremes. I was shopping and saw a woman who every time she touched a shop door or anything, out came the "no water needed" hand cleaner. Walking out of the car park it was fling the door open then grab the hand spray. I might be wrong but I predict a huge rise in dermatitis and other hand skin complaints this autumn. So many people are using it that the whole shelf in Tesco was empty and a notice "no more until 27/7". Yes I know, its good to wash your hands, but after every contact with anything seems a little OTT

At least this week we have found out why there is so much swine flu news, have you heard, swine flu is going to cause the UK economy to shrink by 4.6% .

So there you have it, nothing at all to do with my good mate Gordon at no.10 or even the other twit at no. 11, well that's a relief.

17 July, 2009

Global Warming, Yeah Whatever !

A couple of months ago some bright sparks told us to paint our houses white or die of heat stroke in a long hot summer, didn't they?

I am glad that advice came from the Department of Health, so I knew that being a government department the advice was useless.

It's 17th July, torrential rain is hitting the conservatory roof and its 15.5 deg. outside. I am well pleased that I didn't spend money on white paint, I am also sure that the talk of global warming is total twaddle.

Lets get real. The experts can not forecast 3 months ahead, so why would anyone trust them on anything further off.
There is something else that has occurred to me. Scientists say that the world is warmer now than it was 100yrs ago. But, how do they know. I can tell you that it is 15.4 deg. outside because of a very accurate electronic thermometer, but 100 years back there were no digital thermometers and taking the temperature was considerably less accurate.

If they were talking of a jump in temperature of say 5 deg maybe we could trust old records, but we are not. We are talking of 0.7deg, apparently. Hold on, we are taking average temperatures here too. (Since I started writing this blog the temperature has dropped 0.3 deg.) So it is not possible to compare the average temperatures of 100 years ago, or even 10 years ago unless you take them at exactly the same time and location for every reading. Even a few minutes will make a difference.

How has global warming become the new religion, why did anyone take notice of someone who failed to become president just because he made a film. Which, by-the-way, is one of the most boring contrived films ever made, and unless you are bored flying long haul somewhere I would not bother watching.

The temperature is now another 0.1deg lower, conclusive proof that the earth is getting colder, (which it actually has in the last 3 years) and with just this data from today I can tell you that if things continue at this rate by Friday week it will be minus 317deg in my back garden.

OK, so maybe my methods are not completely accurate on this , but I was right not to paint the house white, wasn't I!

11 July, 2009

Thank God for scientists!

There are times that I read something and wonder why on earth they need to do that. This week was one of those times.

With all the problems in the world, the illness that needs to be cured, the CO2 to be cut and the planet to be saved, scientists have done the equivalent of finding a way to make clover for my lawn in a lab. They have, presumably, spent millions of pounds on this man made breakthrough and can now solve a very real problem.

The problem, like the lack of weeds in my lawn, does not exist but they have taken delight in telling the world that they have produces artificial sperm in the lab. (I think that is the first time I have ever typed "sperm")

This breakthrough is wrong on so many levels. Why do these clever people feel the need to play God in this matter. Is there actually a shortage of sperm that requires it to be made in a lab.

I have the Monty Python song in my head now "every sperm is sacred" rejoicing in the the fact that a certain religion does not waste it, but there are a few hundred million other men enjoying themselves not caring about waste I am sure.

I don't understand the science but they seem to need a human embryo to produce the artificial sperm, Um, doesn't that mean they need sperm in the first place.

Of course there could be another explanation how sperm came to be on the scientists bench, think Clinton and Lewinsky.

09 July, 2009

Nature Notes

Have all the nature experts left the UK and started reporting via the Internet to unmanned labs. What else could explain why they seem to be getting a lot of things wrong.

According to these experts swifts are scarce this year and it is caused by both global warming and a lack of nest sites; because all the old barns have been converted to nice energy efficient hermetically sealed homes.

I wish someone would tell the swifts, because as I sit in my garden I look up and see a sky positively full of them, a hundred maybe, the jet fighters of the bird world performing aerobatics catching bugs.

It is not only at my home in Essex that this is happening, on holiday in the Peak District we were buzzed by hundreds of swift skimming the air over the dam, swerving at the last second to avoid us as their wings whizzed past our ears. They are positively abundant this year, where are the experts looking.

And another thing, butterflies are apparently scarce too, not here they are not. I walked along a footpath yesterday and all manner of butterflies were taking off in front of me flitting to the side and landing back behind.

Perhaps the explanation for the experts mistakes is to do with funding. Maybe unless they publish all manner of bad things related to "global warming" they won't get any government grants.

Anyone who speaks out against the Emperors new clothes CO2 theory is already seen as an heretic and obviously hell bent on the destruction of the planet, I guess the nature lobby have fallen in line too.