Before Christmas, really getting worse

Good morning and may the panic of the season be on all of you with a vengeance!
It is with me.
I must reassure you that despite playing abysmal football this morning (with son Axel who was still drunk) I am fine and uninjured in any evident way.

This being a sort of morning thing, usually, I cannot but start with the droning sound of Gatwick airport. It is my habit to read and then digest, sometimes distill, and then scribble a resumé of the news, but for once, I will simply reproduce this section of an article on said Gatwick problems printed in the Guardian here. Can you spot the strange bit?
And really, you’ve got to love this guy.
«Some more tales of woe now from Gatwick. David Sowter, 79, set off on his journey to visit his daughter in Jersey for Christmas at 5am on Wednesday morning, driving first to Jacksonville in Florida and flying to Fort Lauderdale in order to catch a connection to Gatwick.
But following the drone sightings his flight was unable to land in London and so was diverted to Paris. After sitting on the runway for four hours, he was put on a bus to Calais and a ferry to Dover. He arrived at Gatwick at 5am on Friday morning. His flight to Jersey is now scheduled to leave at 7pm.
He doesn’t have a smart phone and so has been unable to follow the unfolding situation with drone sightings. “I’ve got a flip phone. My daughter in Jersey doesn’t even know where I am,” he said. His plans for the rest of the day at Gatwick mainly involve drinking beer. “I already had two at breakfast this morning,” he said. “I had a proper English breakfast with two pints of Guinness.”»
At 79? For breakfast? My kind of man!
And can you guess what I am having for breakfast? (Hint: it might become more noticeable as I type.)

As announced, it is play sports day for me this morning and there has to be a valid reason to do it. Everyone who says that running is the way to burn up calories is talking bollocks. I have looked at the rate of use of energy while running (I am a professor of thermodynamics, you know) and it comes nowhere near burning off any extra weight.  Basically, sport gives you some cardio vascular exercise and indirectly reduces your appetite for eating fast food and sugars. To get the message through to the general populace (also known as the usual idiots) one newspaper has translated a simple sport (running) into the equivalent of eating Christmas crap. One slice of cake or a small sweet pie will require 35 minutes of running to burn off all the energy. Run for an hour and you can eat two.  That is one miserable return, you reasonably say, and the clear idea was to incite people to eat less by looking for a balance between energy intake and energy use. Except that it has worked in the opposite direction. The newspaper blog under the article is full of comments about how it is now obvious that running or sport isn’t worth it at all if you are overweight. It does nothing except make you tired, so we may as well keep eating and damn the consequences. Obesity crisis? And on we go with that one.
French doctors (among others) keep saying that it is better to go for a fast walk after eating a lot (and eating a little too) and this is far more healthy than not burning off any calories at all.
However, and this is for those of you with a dog, not only does a good walk burn some (small number of) calories and exercise the dog but allows accompaying guests the chance to  practise digestive amelioration by discretely allowing gross flatulence, for which the poor dog has been taking the blame while inside the house.
Dog lovers! Yeah! Now you know why they have dogs.

Some ancient Greek offered better advice but as I can’t remember the exact quote, I have to paraphrase: «Eat, drink, copulate with a willing partner of choice, work as much as necessary and as little as possible, for tomorrow you may be dead or something else unpleasant might happen.»

That’s us all eating and drinking, then.

Have you seen the official White House Christmas photograph this year? Lines of Christmas trees with the Orange Shit Gibbon in a black dress suit beside Melanoma (isn’t that her name?) in a white dress standing in the middle. The smiles are stark reminders that vampires do exist and are flourishing. This has to be the most child-frightening Christmas image ever. It is devoid of all life as we know it. 

To the hilarious embarassment of the Brexit voting usual idiots (them again) it was wonderful to see that beacon of democracy and openness Tsar Vladimir the first and last give his opinion to Teresa May (a vagina drier than the dust on Mars) on a second referendum. Fulfil the will of the people, he intoned in a planned hypnotic message (The Manchurian Candidate, anyone?). In Russia, of course, he gets 93% of the vote because it’s not the people who vote that counts, it’s the people who count the votes.
Besides, he has a strong financial interest in Brexit and he doesn’t want a second referendum. After all, he paid enough for the first one.
He also has some serious interests in Catalunia. And I reckon he has compromised your Doktor Sanchez cum fraude.

Much comment has been made over the English speaking world concerning a recent article in the British Medical Journal, the premier medical publication in the world. There is an interesting article concerning the use of parachutes in aviation. A group of medical researchers have done a study of the effectiveness of jumping out of an aircraft with or without a parachute. Here is the reference:
The outcomes of the experiments are somewhat conclusion-limited by the aircraft being on the ground.
Complaints were being urged by journalists who are being «responsible about the spending of public money». I laughed.
Because some of those commenting haven’t realised that the BMJ Christmas issue is a parody issue full of joke studies written by actual medical researchers. They even put the articles on their CVs. 
I mean, how could a study on whether parachute use reduces death rates for people jumping out of aircraft be taken in any way seriously?

The next bit of certifiable madness comes from the Great Brexit… eh… Britain.
Adam Thomas, 22, and Claudia Patatas, 38 (originally from Portugal), are a neo-Nazi couple who named their baby son after Adolf Hitler.
Family picture showed Thomas holding his son while wearing the hooded robes of the Ku Klux Klan. They were put in front of a judge for belonging to an illegal racist organisation. No! Not the Conservative party.
At the trial in Birmingham the court heard that the father had also taught their daughter to do a Nazi salute, and then sent a message to Patatas saying: “Finally got her to do it.”
They gave their male child the middle name “Adolf”, which Thomas said was in “admiration” of Hitler, and the couple had swastika cushions in their home.
These caring and reasonable parents cried and held hands in the dock as they were jailed for six years and six months, and five years respectively.
It took the authorities over five years to react. The couple should have stayed in the Conservative party.

Despite the cringing awkwardness of Theresa May dancing on stage at the Conservative Party conference and also in South Africa, (choreographer Ray Harryhausen), she still has more credibility than the fool leading the Labour party, who just announced that no matter what happens, he will vote for Brexit.
Then he will get a better deal than May.
Where does stupidity end and delusion start?

There is also news from both Spain and the UK that the 15 Saudi murderers of that journalist some weeks ago have been banned from entering either country.
This must be quite surreal for the Saudis with their public beheadings and hand «removing», let alone their unhidden illegal military actions in Yemen. The idea that they would be vilified all over the world for killing a fully grown man in private with no witnesses must seem ridiculous to them by now. Spain and the UK apparently “share values” with the Saudis. After they behead someone (48 in the first four months of the year), they sometimes crucify the body in the public square for three days. The average Saudi then has the good sense to behorrified by women driving cars. What is the world coming to?
Given teh continuing arms sales, it appears that both governments were so angry about the murder that they sent a strongly worded arms invoice to the Saudi government.

Christmas presents are as always difficult for me since my kids now ask for branded goods and it is no longer possible to buy the no-label equivalent while telling them that it is just the same. The advertising seriously upsets me. All of these multi-nationals are pushing themselves as moral arbiters for young people and now the adults in the room. Look at the publicity! Are we suddenly expected to look for moral guidance to corporations like McDonalds, Nike etc? In fact, speaking of Nike and their brand message of “Just do it”. I have it from a reliable source that this started out as a looped PA announcement in their Vietnamese trainer factory to the children making the produce… «just do it, just do it, just do it…». ad nauseum.

I saw one strange comment in an American publication, related to the anti-women supreme court judge Brett Kavanaugh (I love beer, weep! Do you love beer? sniff! ). A rather macho ex-colleague of said judge claimed that after drinking plenty of beer (I love beer, sniffle) during his student days, he would complain loudly about not having a woman nearby when he would wake up in the morning feeling arousal. Well, the only positive I can see for his case is that his erection would probably have stopped him from rolling out of bed.

The world is depressing me. Have you read the newspapers from different countries?

I will take this opportunity to wish you all, and your families, a fairly Happy Christmas. Can we expect more?
Also, with mornings now without the obligation of work for the next two weeks, I might well find the cynical inspiration to write more often but shorter messages.

love to all

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