Water, extermination and a scary monkey.

I have no kitchen. It’s mostly in a pile in the back garden ready for a new one to start being fitted tomorrow. Some parts are in the garage – I’m upgrading the very shabby storage in there. The Greek kitchen-bloke amazed me by pulling the oven out and laying it on the floor. On his own! Last time that thing came out was when I had to replace an element and it took two of us to shift it.

Anyway, I’ll be surviving on microwave meals and plums for a few days (the tree is not as laden as last year but there are at least three carrier bags’ worth on there). Also a decent crop of eating apples this year. Those are very good for your insides, you know.

During kitchen dismantling I had about an hour with no water. It’s much easier to take taps off without that pesky wet stuff spraying everywhere. Even so, it drives home just how important that water supply is. Fancy a cup of tea? Oh wait, there’s no water. Need the toilet? Careful now, there’s only one flush in the tank. Hands dirty? Tough. That was just one hour!

If, when I replaced the sink taps some time ago, I had thought to use little valves instead of straight compression joints, there would have been no need to turn the water off and drain the tanks completely. Oh well, the pipes have valves now.

Imagine a world where your water could be turned off remotely, or automatically when you’ve used your week’s ration. Along with your electricity and gas supplies. That happens a lot in Panoptica and there is no point asking the neighbours for help. Their supplies are rationed too. It does not occur to the drones that the stuff falling from the sky is the same as the stuff coming out of the taps. It hasn’t been processed so it can’t be safe.

Many people are like that already. I have offered around bags of free plums and often come up against ‘Can you eat them just like that? Don’t they have to be processed?’ These are people in their 40s, who must have surely, as children, picked the blackberries and raspberries that grow wild all around here. Very few people do that now (I’m one of them!).

When water becomes scarce, as it will – artificially, of course – I might make a fortune selling small beer made from rain. For the alcohol-scared, I’ll just sell bottled boiled rainwater. I have filters aplenty.

To achieve such control, the establishment will have to install smart meters (already under way for electricity) and similar water meters. That’s also already under way in southern England which has been declared an ‘Area of Serious Water Stress’. That makes meter installation compulsory. For the rest, there are the usual ‘it will save you money’ claims that cannot be true for everyone. Currently the cost is averaged out based on house size. If I use less water than expected for the size of house, someone else in the same sized house must be using more. Most likely the families with small children. So if the meter saves me money it will increase someone else’s bill. It will increase the bills of those who can least afford it, as all these measures always do.

Meanwhile we are being exhorted to waste water by pouring it over our heads in the name of some charity or other. Not just water, but iced water. In a few months, iced water is going to fall from the sky here. It does it every year and I am in no hurry to experience that again. We have a few months of non-ice now, I say we make the best of them.

It came as a shock to hear that supermarkets are running out of ice. People buy ice? In Scotland? I have a thing called a freezer that turns tap water into ice for free. Sometimes I have to turn it off and clear out all the excess ice. I’ve been throwing it away. I had no idea anyone was willing to buy it.

I agree with Longrider on this one. I have not been nominated for the cold and wet game on Farcebok and if I am, the answer will be ‘no’ if I answer at all. Besides, I think that charity’s administrators are paid quite enough already.

It’ll be hard to convince the Scots that there is a water shortage. As far as I know there has never been a hosepipe ban in Scotland. One very dry summer, years ago, the water company did write to everyone asking if we’d mind not using our hoses too often but there was no actual ban. It’ll be the ‘cost saving’ angle here. Start with those who really will save money. Then profits will decline so the non-metered rate will have to rise to compensate. This will push those whose nieghbours are saving money into joining the metered gang. Profits will decline again, non-metered rates will rise… last one in is going to be paying a fortune!

It’s a good thing I have no world-domination ambition, isn’t it?

It’s very easy to control the baying mob. Most of them are too lazy to think and want someone else to think for them. Socialists like to do their thinking for them. Unfortunately, when it comes to thinking, socialists aren’t really very good at it. Well, they have their schemes but they never think them through. That’s why they fall apart.

One scheme that seems to be going quite well so far is population reduction by mass immigration. So it’s probably not the socialists behind this one.

What’s that? A logic lapse? How can you cause population reduction by mass immigration?

Easy. You make it very hard for anyone productive to live here but very easy for anyone who wants to live on benefits and stab passers-by. Keep that up and it won’t be the UN calling for population reduction. It’ll be the baying mob. Again, as with all such measures, those calling for an end to free benefits, free healthcare and so on never imagine it will apply to them. It’s just for the ‘other people’. No. Family size will be restricted, as in China. Wait a while. My bet is it will be two children per couple. It won’t be easy to apply since so many are born with no visible father these days but that’s another step on the way to Panoptica anyway.

The Calais issue could be solved at a stroke. These people are not EU citizens so are not automatically entitled to the benefits system of any EU country. Just tell them ‘Sure, come here if you want but you’ll starve to death in the streets and be eaten by seagulls and crows. We’re not even going to bury your corpse. We’ll just dump it where the rats can find it.’

Callous? Maybe. But it’s the freebies that call the world’s wasters to these shores. They certainly don’t come for the weather. The freebies aren’t even officially available to these non-EU folk. The opportunity to say ‘no’ is there. Why don’t they just say ‘no’? Could it be that they want the people – the mob – to demand it first? Then they can say ‘Hey, you wanted this, there’s no point complaining about it now’.

Since I decided on Scotland for Panoptica, the story is flying. There are things I wish I could blog or even hint at but they would be major spoilers. I am not at work again until Saturday – my new hours are concentrated into Saturday and Sunday with, very likely, some holiday cover. But that’s okay. Holiday cover is a reciprocal thing. Someone has had to cover my almost-month off. If it starts to get a bit too regular I can always quit again.

This week I will be disturbed by noise in the kitchen which will slow my writing down. Can’t be helped, I’m getting it on the cheap so I can’t complain. Still, the most productive writing comes when I have the peace to be in the imaginary world of the story. Any intrusion of reality can pop me out of that world and it can be hard to get back in.

Then again, reality can be helpful sometimes. A random browse brought me to a short story idea – it’s been a long time since I rattled one out and it would be a nice break from novels. This one involves a very scary monkey.

Here we have an artist with a scary face in her head. It won’t go away until she sculpts it. A few years later it demands she makes hands. Then a body. When it’s finished, the entity that sent the images can take control of it. I considered putting a comment to that effect on the blog but decided that was far too cruel, even for me.

I’ll have to make adjustments though. It would have to be built with mobile limbs at least. I’ve never been a fan of doll-coming-to-life stories where moulded plastic hands become suddenly dextrous.

So maybe an animator rather than an artist. Puts me into ventriloquist-dummy territory and those are ideal. Even the real ones can be scary.

Real life… fiction… it’s hard to know where the real horror lies sometimes.


What I did on my holidays (1)

Drinking, mostly. But there were other things. I like to do something a little different from my usual routine when on holiday. Different booze, especially. There is a beer available in my brother’s favourite pub in Wales that comes out of a proper old hand pump. The beer is called Doom Bar. I think it comes from Cornwall. Very nice, and the local Tesco had it in bottles too.

My brother drinks Carling lager because he is an uncultured slob with absolutely no taste in anything at all. He smokes, but earns enough not to bother with growing baccy and anyway, he goes abroad so often he never needs to buy any here. Still, we can’t all be perfect. He is also a bit down because his previous favourite pub, the one at the end of his street, is now a posh bistro. Both pubs have really good smoking shelters, but the new one’s shelter is large and has seating.

I took no photos in Wales and none in Ayr. I have been to both places so many times now that there is nothing left to photograph. Also the weather was awful. Well, it was okay when I arrived but deteriorated rapidly. Wales experienced its coldest August day since 1964 while I was there.

So here are some photos on the way from Ayr to my last stop, a place called Elie in Fife. The great thing about being a passenger is that you get to look around and take photos. Here are a few samples of the glory of Scottish scenery between Ayr and the Forth Bridge -

props1Clicking should biggify the images. Try to ignore the rolling clouds. They are everywhere. Sometimes the sky turns blue but that’s probably caused by pollution.

props2You have to be quick when snapping a photo at 70 mph. I lost count of how many I checked and deleted because a 70mph bush had jumped in front of the camera.

props3I used to, long ago, know someone who genuinely believed that the word ‘picturesque’ was pronounced ‘pictureskew’. It wasn’t me who convinced him. Someone else got there first. Might have been my father. It now seems apposite to any picture of Scottish countryside because the tripods of H.G. Wells are now all over the country. You just can’t get away from the bloody things. They are marching over the hills near my home now. Soon, every picture taken from any angle is going to have one of these things in it unless you point your camera at the moon.

Anyway, so far there are none on the Forth Bridge itself…

forthI did get a photo of the rail bridge but it has a bus in front of it.

After a bit of detouring (there is a confusing bit of road and the map I had wasn’t up to the job) we made it to the little seaside town of Elie, which looks like this from the harbour -

elie1Lovely isn’t it? If you look towards the left hand side though, you’ll once again meet one of our rotating overlords. It used to be picturesque. Now it’s pictureskew.

Ah well. There are some towns in the area only lightly blighted with these things so far. Pittenweem didn’t seem to have any. Neither did a tiny place called Dunino (when you ask where you are, they reply ‘Don’ ‘ee kno?’). The lovely little harbour at Crail had no sign of them (photos later). And of course, St. Andrew’s, where the posh golf course resides, is so far free of pictureskewiness. Of course it is. It’s where the rich go to play. They don’t want their own scenery ruined.

On beer, there is a place in a town called Kilconquhar (if you visit, you must pronounce it Kil-con-kwa-harr because it drives them nuts) that has a brew so local it’s only available in that pub. They call it ‘Clock’ (I made no note of the spelling) and it’s well worth a try. The pub is opposite this quite nice church -

kilconquharObviously I didn’t go into the church. I don’t want to burst into flames again. The pub is directly opposite. I forget its name and that might be because I took that photo on the way in and this one on the way out -

treesI’m amazed that came out so well. That right there is a future book cover.

Anyway, back to Elie. I stayed with rich relatives, as skint spongers with too much pride do, and the place I stayed in was one of their spare homes. The view from the windows when I arrived was this -

arrivalTwo hours later it looked like this -

2hoursThen it rained. A lot. The clouds came from the south, where I had been.

Funny thing is, when I finally arrived home, it was sunglasses weather. An hour later it was sou’wester weather.

Maybe it’s me…

On the whole though, it was a good holiday. Bad weather and limited internet access is good for writers because we have to write. There’s nothing else to do. And it didn’t cost too much. The biggest outlay was transport and booze. Staying with family and friends is low-cost. It could be completely free but I can’t do that, it’s parasitism in my book. If I’m staying in your house I’m buying the whisky.

Mind you, I’m also drinking most of it.

Found it!

I had set Panoptica in a fictional country. It had to be small because I didn’t want long Tolkeinesque treks all over the place. People concentrated in cities and ‘conservation’ areas in between.

Now, thanks to Subrosa and also to Stewart Cowan’s past mentions of the huge conservation area forming in southern Scotland, I have the perfect country for this terrible world.

Whether it is independent in this imagined future is irrelevant. If it is, Oily Al and his Spiteful Nannying Puritans will make it happen. They have already started the process. If it’s not independent, it will be used as a test bed by Westminster for draconian measures anyway, as it always has been.

It won’t need much changing, really. Scotland has a few big cities surrounded by loads of open countryside. All I need do is change a few place names and check my timings for travel betwen those places.

The cameras? They’re already here.

Clutching at straws.

Home from holiday – more on that later. The new battery for the Acer arrived while I was away. Windows is definitely doomed on that little machine. The last few days it has insisted on running a full filesystem check on drive C at startup which takes ages to report ‘Nope, it’s all fine’. So that one is getting a new brain, and then the desktop replacement… no, save it all for later.

Via #Octabber on Farcebok comes this interesting snippet. It’s in the mainstream media – and yet it’s what we’ve all been saying for years! Things are changing. Times are turning against the Puritans once again. They are getting desperate now.

One of the ASH drones was on the TV news while I was offline. She insisted that a blanket ban on Electrofags was the only safe way because ‘they expose bystanders to nicotine and other harmful chemicals’.

Ahem. Nicotine is not harmful, never has been and unless you concentrate it, take drugs to suppress your gag reflex and then drink it, it never will be. If nicotine kills people (as ASH love to imply) then every doctor who has ever prescribed nicotine patches and/or gum, along with all those involved in production and supply, are guilty of attempted mass murder.

The other ‘harmful chemicals’ are propylene glycol (food grade, used as a thickening agent in many foods and also in medical atomisers), food-grade flavourings, and steam. If those are harmful, a whole raft of food producers will be in the dock beside the medics and the Pharmers and the shops selling anything containing any of this stuff. Since, as ASH like to say, the date of guilty knowledge is long past, there can only be one verdict.

Taking things to their logical conclusion is fun, isn’t it? The ASH drones are either so desperate they have given up any form of thinking ahead, or, perhaps more likely, they are incapable of thinking ahead.

The smokophobes prefer to take things to their illogical conclusion, because they are all stupid and driven only by spite and hate. Hence their latest claim that Hollywood has decided to use Electrofag as a prop to denote the bad guy.

Never ones to let facts get in the way of a good spite-fest, they begin with a version of logic so twisted you could screw it into a concrete block and hang a bulldozer on it.

But tobacco companies hoping that e-cigarettes will receive similar treatment are in for an unpleasant surprise.

Sigh. Tobacco companies are really hoping Electrofag falls flat. The antismoker mind is so bizarrely warped that they actually believe the tobacco companies want their biggest competitor ever to succeed. So far have the Puritans conflated anything resembling smoking with actual smoking, they will soon declare that someone chewing a pencil proves that tobacco companies make pencils.

Actually, if a pencil-like object were made of compressed tobacco it could be a new Sneaky Snus. You could even put graphite down the middle of it and actually use it as a pencil, then surreptitiously bite a bit off the end. Save the shavings when sharpening, of course, then pack them into little paper tubes to avoid littering. You can burn them later. This might never actually happen but the mere thought of it should be enough to soil some antismoker underwear.

The rest of the story has no more logic than that opening statement. It claims that Electrofag is to be used as the new ‘black hat’ for the bad guy – the usual one is an English accent these days. I recall seeing the film of Stephen King’s ‘Dreamcatcher’. Even in that film, the evil alien had a proper ‘what-ho chaps’ English accent.

The real story is that the actor has a pause in action and the director doesn’t know what to do to avoid having him just stand there. So he puffs on an Electrofag.

Why not a real cigarette? Those have been excised from films in the name of Righteousness. Soon, Electrofags will be too. And chewing on pencils. And toothpicks. The smokophobes are getting seriously deperate now. Soon, even the Daily Mail will notice. Well, maybe not ‘soon’. Eventually.

How far we have come from the 1945 film ‘Dead of Night’ where the killer was identifiable from the beginning to those in the know.

He was the only one not smoking.


Incidentally, it’s nearly time for Octabber again. Good of the smokophobes to pick October for their daft ‘Stoptober’ game. That’s when the annual crop is just about ready to burn.

So those of us growing our own only need to produce a month’s worth of free smokes. There’s no danger of any tax going in for that month.

Isambard’s Cigar

Another quickie. I’m on the move again tomorrow. Unpleasantly early (ie before noon). I wish I’d taken a non-electronic camera with me because the views over the windfarm monstrosities around Glasgow were worth recording. Our (I mean, we checked-in cargo units) cabin crew on the way down was a very jolly Big Gay Al, and on the way back we were attended to by a smiling Nosferatu. Cheap airlines do not come with ogleworthy cabin crew. Getting onto a small plane with a tall, stooped thin man in black grinning at you was a little disconcerting but there’s bound to be a short story in there somewhere.

I didn’t take a film-camera because I suspected the drones in security, unable to find a screen or an ‘on’ switch, would probably open the back. All my gadgetry was charged as per the warnings but nobody looked at a thing. Airport security, both ways, was the most relaxed I have seen for years.

I see the collapse of the Leftie Loonies continues apace with the admission that all those ‘racists’ were quite right about the child rapists in Rotherham. Yes, everyone already knew, even those who are now trying to avoid accepting the blame. Seems the Savile Distraction didn’t work.

But I must sleep. I have a goodly dose of sleepy-water to help me on my way; this one is Glenfiddich. What the hell, I’m not going to be driving. Details and photos will follow.

One thing worth mentioning among the downfall of Political Correctness – the Daily Mail is trying an antismoking story and getting it most spectaularly wrong. IKB, they say, smoked 40 big cigars a day. And just look how it destroyed his mind, his work ethic and his life. Oh, wait…

I recall a most wonderful animated film called ‘Great’, all about Isambard Kingdom Brunel. It included the marvellous song that started ‘Get a big top hat if you want to get ahead’. Some of it used to be on YouTube but it seems to be gone now.

So instead, here is a slightly inferior offering.


Facing darkness.

Tomorrow (no, later today) I go back to Scotland. Not all the way home, not yet. I have people to visit on the way. Unlike Subrosa I will bypass England’s Green-ruined motorway system by flying over them in a right little Fokker.

Internet access has been slow but available this week. That’s okay, I needed to work on Panoptica and get another view on the draft version of Inside Outside, both of which have been achieved. I have also finally found the motivation that gets the rebels moving – the ones 10538 refers to as ‘ghosts’ because originally, they thought Panoptica decadent and dying. All they had to do was wait. I have a surprise for them that changes things and livens up the story a hell of a lot.

For the rest of this week I have no idea what internet access will be available. Maybe none. None would not be too bad, it will force me to not procrastinate and actually do some work.

I hear there have been ground frosts in Scotland which does not bode well for my tobacco plants, nor for any of the others. Oh well, we’ll have to just wait and see. Ground frosts in August were last seen in 1964 so no doubt that will be more proof of global warming for the throroughly stupid.

I am way behind on responding to comments and emails and that is likely to continue for another week. I noticed that Roobeedoo2 found out that it’s now possible to put images in comments, which could be fun.

Okay, maybe I’ll be back online next week, maybe not until the end of August. I have no idea. It’s just another random thing that seems to happen a lot to me, so I just accept it all.

Now, back to what I am supposed to be doing – writing.



War, disease, terror…

In the now-famous speech by V in the film ‘V for Vendetta’, these things were what he said were used to coerce voters into voting for the dictatorship.

Look at our leaders. Cameron is once more surfing in Cornwall and Clegg is cooking up a stew in India. Yet we have ebola being flown into the US, Spain and the UK. We have British jihadis beheading American reporters in Iraq. Full-on war all over the Middle East caused, almost entirely, by Western government meddling. A UN conference coming up in Cardiff (fortunately after I’ve gone back to Scotland) which has resulted in the construction of a barrier to rival the one Israel built around Gaza, or the Communists built around East Berlin. Scotland’s very own chubby version of Windy Miller wants Scotland to be independent and, once he runs out of hot air to power his windmills, as invisible at night as North Korea.

A widespread outbreak of Ebola in the UK would be difficult to do, but there’s no need. Remember necrotising fasciitis, the flesh-eating bug? Everyone was terrified they would dissolve away in a matter of hours. There were eight cases in one year at the peak. Eight.

You do not need to engineer a massive outbreak. You need only have one case in the UK, one person to actually catch it here, and there will be panic. Today, a plane that landed in Aberdeen was quarantined because a 10-year-old girl was sick on the flight. Not an uncommon thing. Airlines provide bags for the purpose. However, she came from Nairobi so it was a full hazmat lockdown while she was checked. That’s not all that unreasonable really but if you had asked the people outside the plane, I’ll bet a fair number of them would have supported the idea of torching the whole lot, pilot and passengers included, rather than take the chance. Fear and rationality don’t work well together.

If there is one home-caught case of ebola in the UK, the next suspected case on a plane will see a mob with pitchforks and flaming torches.

There is strife and turmoil and disaster everywhere and the potential for it to get much worse but it doesn’t really have to. It only needs to look as if it is going to. We now have senior politicians stating – stating, not theorising – that they expect an attack from Islamoloonies any day now. A big, spectacular attack, as they put it. People are terrified.

Look again at what our leaders are doing now. They don’t appear to be terrified, do they? They don’t seem bothered in the least. Worldwide catastrophe is not worth interrupting a holiday for. Why are they so untroubled? Could it be because everything is proceeding exactly as planned?

The seeds of ebola are planted in the US, UK and Spain. It does not have to be an outbreak. One case, caught from those flown home, will do. Imagine what happens once ebola is out of the box. Imagine what happens when you are  on a bus or a train and you sneeze…

The terrorists don’t need to be real. You don’t even need a false-flag operation any more. Any accidental gas explosion, any motorway pile-up, anything at all, all you need do is say you are ‘investigating whether terrorism was involved’ and that is what will stick in the drone mind. Three nuts from Cardiff went off to get themselves killed in Iraq and look at the speculation about the enormous jihadi terror cell that is supposed to now exist in Cardiff. Where the UN are about to have a meeting. If they really believed in this evil genius in Cardiff, don’t you think they’d be having that meeting somewhere else? They have most of the world to choose from. Or maybe there is to be an attack, one which will fail but which will look convincing. We shall see.

If Cameron was really serious about his wars all over the world fighting terrorists, drug dealers, fat people, drinkers, smokers, climate heretics and people who pass the port to the right, why is he reducing the British military and why is he so totally unconcerned about current events?

War. Terror. Disease… Fear. Those who live in fear do not reason. They do not calculate. They do not consider outcomes or consequences. They want only one thing. A release from fear. They want it now. Right now. At any price.

Only later do they find that their relase from fear brings no more than a different kind of fear. And then it’s too late.