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Eddie Mair | 12:17 UK time, Friday, 18 August 2006

See the pearl of wisdom at the top of the page? It came from an actual PM listener - one of many suggestions we got when we asked people to sum up the programme in a few words. We'll try to change it every day. If you have a suggestion of your own...you know what you can do with it. That's right, shove it right where the comments go.

In the Independent today, it says David Dimbleby will present Any Questions on Radio 4 tonight. And there's a photo of said David to prove it. Jonathan, if you're reading this, take them for every penny they've got.

A colleague has sent me an audio mix of various Radio 4 voices saying "crap" yesterday. I've no idea whether I can post that sort of thing here or how it might work but I'll ask an adult and maybe we'll try something next week?

By the way, I've noted some concern in the comment columns that some people think bloggers have nothing to say and that this will be a waste of everyone's time. Let me make this quite clear. I have nothing to say and this will be a waste of everyone's time. Really.

Eric Doherty


  1. At 12:40 PM on 18 Aug 2006, Christopher wrote:

    Good to see that you are getting the hang of this.
    Now when will we be gettign our hands on this little sound bite?

  2. At 12:41 PM on 18 Aug 2006, Cathy Harrison wrote:

    Sum up the programme in a few words? I can do it in two:


  3. At 12:41 PM on 18 Aug 2006, Steve Marshall wrote:

    A subliminally addictive post today? Definitely more than 18 words and some content? Ambassador, you're spoiling us. Excellent show, newsletter and now blog.

  4. At 12:42 PM on 18 Aug 2006, Keith Cooper wrote:

    If you have enough time to read all the comments, perhaps your days are a little activity light, and therefore writing the blog is adding something constructive to your day. Thus it is not a waste of your time and therefore cannot be a waste of everyones time. It adds benefit to your day.

    If blogging doesn't work for you, try cocaine. Mr Doherty, although 'clean' could perhaps sort you out?

  5. At 12:43 PM on 18 Aug 2006, Fearless Fred wrote:

    Woo hoo First post!!!

    So, Eddie, why don't you name names and say who it was that put together that tape?

  6. At 12:49 PM on 18 Aug 2006, Jonathan Perry wrote:

    Please please please let's have an audio clip section like 'Today' have on their page. There could be the odd blooper - crashing Big Ben -- etc.. and a nice place to upload the 'Crap' audio !

  7. At 12:50 PM on 18 Aug 2006, Johanna wrote:

    Hooray! A great improvement!

    I just took advantage of the link you've got there to go and have a look a Nick Robinson's blog - do a bit of compare and contrast sort of thing - and its not even him!!

    See, this is what happen's when you start this sort of thing, Wednesday I was a Blog virgin now I'm a blog tart!!

    Anyway, it was too long and I couldn't be bothered to read past the first paragraph; yours is still the best blog I've ever read!!

    Well done!!

  8. At 01:04 PM on 18 Aug 2006, andycragg wrote:


    Suggestion for pearl of wisdom : "Its pm, at 5 pm" ...

    ... with maybe some music to accompany it - the Radio 4 Voice Choir singing "crap"?

  9. At 01:04 PM on 18 Aug 2006, Charlie Ravioli wrote:

    sorry, Eddie, or Nikki, or whatever you're calling yourself today, but what is the point of having a blog if you're just going to treat it as a waste of time? Have you been told by some BBC apparatchik that you've got to have one because it's the fashionable thing to do?

  10. At 01:06 PM on 18 Aug 2006, Mark Polson wrote:

    A good start, Eddie though as my old English teacher (that's an English teacher some time ago as opposed to one who was old) once crushingly said, "workmanlike rather than inspiring". Put that at the top of your page. Anyway, I'm thinking of getting an IT-literatue chum to write a random-Eddie-alias-generator to save you precious time each day. Will you publish it? And, more importantly, will you pay for it?

  11. At 01:18 PM on 18 Aug 2006, Carl Goss wrote:

    Good attempt today I feel. The use of swear words is encouraging... It would be good to see the additon of such items as Eddie's recipie of the day, DIY tips with Muir, and here's a cracker.... Eddie's thought for the day (that just came to me) Hey why stop at the blog... Eddie's Website would be fab. The Eddie's merchandise, cuddly toys, beeny hats, car stickers (every radio show should have one of those) You can have all these ideas absolutely free by the way. Whatever happened to radio? Love you PM....

  12. At 01:22 PM on 18 Aug 2006, Paul Oldham wrote:

    Actually I think Nick Clarke should be taking someone for every penny they've got ...

  13. At 01:24 PM on 18 Aug 2006, Coco wrote:

    This is sooooo exciting. I just have to have a piece of chocolate cake with Cherry Garcia ice cream to calm myself.
    Hope you didn't get your hand slapped too hard for blogging early. Management, who would have them!

  14. At 01:31 PM on 18 Aug 2006, Treen wrote:

    How about "Less annoying than 'Today' "?
    Regards Treen

  15. At 01:39 PM on 18 Aug 2006, Charles Hatton wrote:

    How about ...

    "It's the All New Eddie Mair Show".

  16. At 01:51 PM on 18 Aug 2006, Colin wrote:

    I've lost my cars keys. Where are they?

  17. At 01:55 PM on 18 Aug 2006, Jean Allison (Mrs) wrote:

    What about... PM will endeavour to give the listener information both exhaustive and precise. I do have to add that this does not incude the 'fancy' new Blog site as of yet.

  18. At 02:01 PM on 18 Aug 2006, Cathy Harrison wrote:

    Colin: What do you think this is? A Lost Property Blog?

  19. At 02:01 PM on 18 Aug 2006, Joel Hammond-Turner wrote:

    Here's a thought...

    Freedom of expression - the right to freely use the word "crap" in a blog posting (regardless of what management think).

    Anyway - how many of us reading this blog actually RELISH the occasional chance to waste a bit of time during the working day!

    Roll on 5pm!

  20. At 02:05 PM on 18 Aug 2006, Stephen wrote:

    This is all fine and Dandy (or is it Beano) but where is my PM newsletter?
    And if it does arrive, I trust it will say something different to the Blog entry?

  21. At 02:07 PM on 18 Aug 2006, Bob Thedino wrote:

    Charlie Ravioli (#9) doesn't seem to be entering into the spirit of this endeavour. I wonder if maybe he's been mistakenly led to believe that the internet is full of useful information?

    And as to the use of swear words, I think if Carl Goss (#11) is referring to the word "crap" then he should reconsider - surely the continuous use of the word yesterday on Radio 4 has denuded it of all its former swearing power?

  22. At 02:15 PM on 18 Aug 2006, Barry Theckston wrote:

    I wonder what William Hardcastle, Gordon Clough, Steve Race, Susannah Simons and Val Singleton would make of all this?

  23. At 02:21 PM on 18 Aug 2006, Colin wrote:

    Cathy Harrison: Instead of criticising, how about helping out! But no, that's not the British way is it?

  24. At 02:21 PM on 18 Aug 2006, Tim wrote:

    When in 1979 Stiff Little Fingers release "You can't say crap on the radio" as an single B-side I guess they did not imagine that Radio 4 would spend a whole day saying just that!

  25. At 02:22 PM on 18 Aug 2006, Pablominus wrote:

    Do we really need so much encouragement to complain on one page? We're not all rabid Feedback contributors you know. Mind you, the notion of denuding crap gave me an itchy mouse finger...

    My suggestion for a "positioning statement" is "funnier than Chris Moyles"...


  26. At 02:24 PM on 18 Aug 2006, Chris wrote:

    Your keys are where you left them.

    I thought a blog was a diary. Isn't this a chatroom?

  27. At 02:25 PM on 18 Aug 2006, Cathy Harrison wrote:

    Tell you what Chris, why not get a bus instead? There are too many damn cars on the road as it is.

  28. At 02:28 PM on 18 Aug 2006, Tim Shackleton wrote:

    Eddie Mair beats the 'Today' mob into a cocked hat-they're so earnest and bullying. I'm sure he's the natural successor to Esther Rantzen for a TV slot - bring on the skate-boarding puppies!

  29. At 02:30 PM on 18 Aug 2006, Sarah too wrote:

    eric what have you done with mrs trellis today?

  30. At 02:40 PM on 18 Aug 2006, John Westward wrote:


    Nick Clarke & Jonathan Dimbleby.. Wonder if Richard Dimbleby is creditied with hosting the programme in some journal this week?

  31. At 02:43 PM on 18 Aug 2006, Robin Herbert wrote:

    I hardly ever get to hear PM as I'm normally on a train at that time. Do enjoy the newsletters though - as an opening statement, how about:

    "PM - probably quite good"

  32. At 02:44 PM on 18 Aug 2006, Roy wrote:

    Woa! Loads more to mull over than yesterday - and even more fabulous. Keep up the good work. Looking forward to those sound files!

  33. At 02:45 PM on 18 Aug 2006, John Westward wrote:

    ...And is it really Hurricane 23 ("Watch") of the season already...

  34. At 02:47 PM on 18 Aug 2006, Matt Whitby wrote:

    As a strapline i'd perhaps use one of the following.

    The real Mair of London.
    PM - Oil for the brain
    PM - A kick in the politics

  35. At 02:47 PM on 18 Aug 2006, The Stainless Steel Cat wrote:

    Charles suggests in message 15, "It's the All New Eddie Mair Show".

    Surely for that, we would have to get an all new Eddie Mair?

    Has anyone kept the receipt for the old one?

  36. At 02:48 PM on 18 Aug 2006, John McReynolds wrote:

    "funnier than Chris Moyles" won't do a positioning statement. Everything is funnier than Chris Moyles - apart from rabies.

  37. At 03:07 PM on 18 Aug 2006, Val Hamblin wrote:

    How about: Pm: when news breaks, we fix it.

  38. At 03:08 PM on 18 Aug 2006, Mark Drew wrote:

    How about: 'A youthful version of "Today" at the end of the day'. Seriously, jumping on the blog waggon has probably upset some young IT nerd that you have to pay homage to to keep the blog up and running. Oh well let us hope it is more reliable than the early day's of your email (yes I have archived them all as evidence). Ah, back to work

  39. At 03:08 PM on 18 Aug 2006, Val Hamblin wrote:

    How about:
    PM: When news breaks, we fix it.

  40. At 03:09 PM on 18 Aug 2006, Kirsty Morgan wrote:

    Aisleyne to win!

  41. At 03:10 PM on 18 Aug 2006, Carl Goss wrote:

    This should win a Sony Blog Acadamy Award... Nice photo on the banner by the way Eddie... Whatever happened to your TV career?
    Is it just me or is the clock face all to cock?

  42. At 03:18 PM on 18 Aug 2006, number cruncher wrote:

    Less is more - at this time yesterday, there were over 110 comments on 4 lines of blog. Today, with several paragraphs of blog, there are under 40.

    Eddie - don't waste your time writing anything. Your listeners are quite happy to chat to each other without you being involved.

  43. At 03:32 PM on 18 Aug 2006, Jezetha wrote:

    PM - the fun way of keeping totally abreast.

  44. At 03:44 PM on 18 Aug 2006, Anth wrote:

    Keith (#4), you forget, Blogging is a natural high.

  45. At 03:45 PM on 18 Aug 2006, George wrote:

    I think this is wonderful, really wonderful, and I shall tell all my friend about it. I'm so excited. It's a little bit like reading someone's diary, isn't it, and a bit like reading a Web page, but one that's updated every day, with the new writing (the "blogs" I think?) appearing in a diary-like format. Again, evoking the feeling of reading a diary. It's all very clever, and I think you should tell us about it more. Where do you get your ideas from? Do you "blog" your diary with a pencil, typewriter, word processor, or do you dictate it? Have you made a backup of it?

  46. At 03:45 PM on 18 Aug 2006, Mildred wrote:

    Why is there a photo of Jeremy Clarkson at the top of this page?

  47. At 03:50 PM on 18 Aug 2006, John Pollard wrote:

    Probably been done already but how about:

    PM - your afternoon wake up call!

  48. At 04:02 PM on 18 Aug 2006, Roy wrote:

    Does Mr Mair have a personal blog? I'd love to know what (or who) he has for breakfast.

  49. At 04:07 PM on 18 Aug 2006, Bob Thedino wrote:

    "PM: Heads it's news, tails it's news..."

    "...it's news."

  50. At 04:22 PM on 18 Aug 2006, Kate O'Mara wrote:

    PM... for all your latest weather.

  51. At 04:23 PM on 18 Aug 2006, Carl Goss wrote:

    PM - Piles More
    PM - Five hours post midday
    PM - Your afternoon 'Today'
    PM - When he's in the country even the PM listens.
    .. why don't I just belt up

    Have a nice programme.

  52. At 04:29 PM on 18 Aug 2006, liam wrote:

    Colin (#26), every 'chatroom' I've been in seems to end up more like 'yelling-room'

  53. At 04:45 PM on 18 Aug 2006, steve wrote:

    Liam (#49) - just SHUT UP!

  54. At 04:48 PM on 18 Aug 2006, steve wrote:

    oh yes, and Colin, I last saw the car keys in the fridge with the power drill

  55. At 04:49 PM on 18 Aug 2006, Eddie Mair wrote:

    Shouldn't you lot be getting ready for the show.
    Actually, shouldn't I???

  56. At 04:55 PM on 18 Aug 2006, Gloria Pitt wrote:

    Has Carl Goss got a monopoly on boring blogs? After reading all 49 on only day 2 I ask myself can this go on? Unfortunately, probably yes. This is my very first blog (is it a blog?) and Carl et al will say "a good thing too"
    Say something interesting or funny someone

  57. At 04:56 PM on 18 Aug 2006, Gloria Pitt wrote:

    Thought I sent a reply but it disappeared. Probably no bad thing!

  58. At 04:59 PM on 18 Aug 2006, anne wrote:

    If you want to post the audio mix thing shouldn't you be asking a child rather than an adult as they are more likely to know how to do it.

    And if George - no 42 - is who I think he is, don't be so sarcastic, you have a blog yourself.

    Anyway please can we have the birdsong back, as it is much nicer than the 'bongs' of Big Ben.

    AND Eddie, never never let Rupert do your blog entires for you cos you know he will only mess it up.

  59. At 05:07 PM on 18 Aug 2006, Roger B. wrote:

    "I have nothing to say and this will be a waste of everyone's time."

    Such refreshing honesty. Have you ever thought of going into politics?

  60. At 05:08 PM on 18 Aug 2006, essex bound wrote:

    Colin, don't worry about the car keys, just tell me where your car is...

  61. At 05:26 PM on 18 Aug 2006, Tim.C wrote:

    #25 suggested that PM is "funnier than Chris Moyles"...

    I think the idea was that it was to be something UNIQUE about PM, rather than a statement that applies to almost anything - even my blog.

    I would write more, but I'm still in shock about Eddie reading out my comment yesterday.

    Eddie: I did blog about your blog record attempt yesterday. Probably the most interesting thing to go on my blog so far!


    (My Blog)

  62. At 05:27 PM on 18 Aug 2006, Loco wrote:

    "an audio mix of various Radio 4 voices saying "crap" yesterday"...
    I'm sure I heard someone in the Archers say crap...
    So, yeah, go for it!

  63. At 05:34 PM on 18 Aug 2006, Rachel Gooch wrote:

    This blog's all very well, but where's the newsletter? Listening on-line, while reading the blog, while waiting for my newsletter to appear. Am I stalking you Eddie?

  64. At 05:36 PM on 18 Aug 2006, Helena wrote:

    Radio 4 blogs : soap operas for the intelligenstia.

  65. At 05:36 PM on 18 Aug 2006, Roger Allen wrote:

    So, the airlines want compensation from the 'Government' i.e. the taxpayer - you and I (especially I it seems) for the recent disruption.
    Wrong - they simply have to sue the persons who are eventually convicted of causing the problems.
    However, I'm not holding my breath.

    Roger Allen

  66. At 05:38 PM on 18 Aug 2006, Rachel Gooch wrote:

    oooh, spooky! As soon as I moaned about my missing newsletter, it spontaneously appeared in my inbox. This blog is cleverer than I thought . . .

  67. At 06:00 PM on 18 Aug 2006, Tim.C wrote:

    Did I miss it...or did the whole of PM really just go past without a single mention of this blog ???

    I think it's because of you lot arguing over car keys ;-)


  68. At 06:04 PM on 18 Aug 2006, Marjorie Hanzlik wrote:

    Charlie Ravioli (#9):
    Are you THE Charlie Ravioli of Adam Gopnik's "Bumping into Mr. Ravioli" (New Yorker, 30.09.02)? If not, you might want to read this wonderful New Yorker article.

    As for EDDIE'S BLOG: bit of a slow start but a flash-in-the-pan debut wouldn't really suit PM, would it?

  69. At 07:22 PM on 18 Aug 2006, Chris Turner wrote:

    Is it just me, or does that photo make you look rather like Noel Coward?

  70. At 07:46 PM on 18 Aug 2006, J F Bloggs wrote:

    I think 'crap' is a horrid little word. i understand it to mean human waste of the brown and bulky kind. It should be beneath the dignity of Radio 4 presenters to use it.

  71. At 08:34 PM on 18 Aug 2006, angela wrote:

    OOH looky blog, blog good.

  72. At 08:58 PM on 18 Aug 2006, bbm wrote:

    Eddie, if you are struggling for things to say why don't you ask the people who write what you normally say to write something down for you?

    Please do NOT complain.

    "Complain about what?"

  73. At 09:15 PM on 18 Aug 2006, Stewart Green wrote:

    Hi there you wonderful people at PM ,i finish work at 5pm and don`t get home till 5.15,but thank goodness for listen again ,i can catch up on one of the best topical programs on air along with the today program .Please keep on doing what you do best keeping us licence payers happy.

  74. At 09:17 PM on 18 Aug 2006, Stewart Green wrote:

    I don`t get home till 5.15 pm, thank goodness for listen again .

  75. At 09:56 PM on 18 Aug 2006, Phil wrote:

    I contributed yesterday so I thought I would keep up the tradition with;



    My initials are PM can I have a royalties check?

  76. At 09:58 PM on 18 Aug 2006, Suzi Q wrote:

    I bloody love you Eddie. But I can't understand why your bosses want you to write a blog. Your job demands that you are impartial, and you do this very well. If you were to say what was really on your mind, surely there would be a terrible fuss! So, what, indeed, is there for you to say? I like the comment from Chris (No.26) who suggested that your blog - or non-blog if you like - is a superb opportunity for like-minded PM fans to have a good old chat and share some of that quiet, sophisticated and wry humour beloved in our hero (your good self, Mr Ed).

  77. At 10:42 PM on 18 Aug 2006, Michael Kenward wrote:

    Complain about this post?

    Why would I?

  78. At 11:07 PM on 18 Aug 2006, ian wrote:

    Yesterday I thought your first post would represent a change to all our lives, today I'm not so sure. I think the planet itself will have been affected by this second post. We note that the moon rotates around its axis at the same rate it rotates around ours. Tomorrow I'm not sure that will hold true, I think with this earth moving experience we're going to start seeing bits of the moon that the USA and Russians never thought we would, be prepared to be aghast, and buy a tin hat.

  79. At 12:15 AM on 19 Aug 2006, Jon wrote:

    'ere. How come there's a link on your page inviting me to hear "NewsPod with Eddie Mair" when it invariably seems to be someone else!?

  80. At 01:02 AM on 19 Aug 2006, Charlie Ravioli wrote:

    Bob Thedino (#21): you're right, I'm afraid I was being somewhat curmudeonly -- missed my Prozac this morning, I'm afraid. I love Eddie's humour, but I fear that the blog's going to be rather content-light. I suppose what I'd most like it to be is something that gives an insight into the editorial decisions underlying the day's programme and allows readers of the blog to pick up and discuss some of the stories and issues in the programme.

    Marjorie Hanzlik (#64): spot on! Obviously I'm not THE Charlie, but you've identified the inspiration for my pseudonym! Wasn't the Gopnik piece brilliant? And don't we all need an invisible friend?

  81. At 10:11 AM on 19 Aug 2006, Martin Stone wrote:

    Well, we cannot all be fans. Sorry, but
    PM is Pretty Mundane these days and until you Eddie learn how to speak something resembling the Queen's English I will continue to listen to Peter Allen and co on Five Live.
    (President Boooooosh indeed)

  82. At 11:32 AM on 19 Aug 2006, Red wrote:

    From reading all these comments, I have been able to form the following conclusion: there's a high percentage of women PM listeners who fancy Eddie like mad, thus I am not alone and probably no longer stand a chance. All this talk of loosing one's virginity and of how gorgeous Eddie is – you should be ashamed of yourselves, girls!
    I, on the other hand, am much more subtle… WILL YOU MARRY ME EDDIE!!!

  83. At 01:26 PM on 19 Aug 2006, Rosalind wrote:

    Is the weekend Eddie light? Or do we have the pleasure of a comment every day?

  84. At 04:07 PM on 19 Aug 2006, Richard Lyle wrote:

    Sorry. I was listening to TMS yesterday and missed the show. What happened?

  85. At 04:20 PM on 19 Aug 2006, Roberto Carlos Alvarez-Galloso,CPUR wrote:

    I will be seeing PM.

  86. At 10:08 PM on 19 Aug 2006, spuggie247 wrote:

    Hello, Mum!

  87. At 08:03 AM on 20 Aug 2006, John Harvey wrote:

    Thursday was my birthday and I reached 69.
    Today I reached 82. Are things speeding up?

  88. At 11:37 AM on 20 Aug 2006, susan Cumisky wrote:

    Every day-do interestingly essential (manifestly an inspiring) read.

  89. At 02:19 PM on 20 Aug 2006, Chris Carter wrote:

    'Happy Hour' for radio news junkies.

  90. At 10:13 AM on 21 Aug 2006, Sue wrote:

    "Queen's English"? Isn't this the 21st century? Diversity, that's the thing, not a load of old stiffs with plums in their mouths. Keep it up Eddie, the accent is divine!

  91. At 01:40 PM on 21 Aug 2006, Frances O wrote:

    Argh, it's Monday afternoon and no Monday blog or newsletter The withdrawals are getting bad and there's only 'X Marks the Spot' on.

  92. At 01:43 PM on 21 Aug 2006, Pablominus wrote:

    #57 are you American or is an irony defecit and obsession with self-publicising now a transatlantic phenomenon? ;-)

    #77 it's nice that you've found a cosy corner to let it all out, there there dear. Did you know Eddie was on 5Live before he got a proper job?

    Am I being needlessly cruel or sarcastic? Perhaps I am, I blame my parents, and Mrs Thatcher.

    If I were you I'd...

  93. At 02:40 PM on 21 Aug 2006, Mummy Mair wrote:

    Why Eddie not do blog-blogs today?

  94. At 05:22 PM on 21 Aug 2006, Matt Russell wrote:

    Sum up in a few words: What I listen to and can't drag myself away from when I'm late for work (I live in Colorado)

  95. At 08:49 PM on 24 Aug 2006, Chris Doidge wrote:

    Perpetually morose?

  96. At 03:40 PM on 26 Oct 2006, John H. wrote:

    It was quite nice today, too. I'm really only adding this because I hadn't frogged here before. Gosh, just occurs to me that we didn't frog back, er, now - or else we did, but don't know we will be doing it...

  97. At 05:22 PM on 26 Oct 2006, Aunt Dahlia wrote:

    Ah! There you are.
    If you are my nephew, could you please return the tenner I lent you next October.
    Thank you so much

  98. At 07:42 PM on 28 Oct 2006, valery pedant wrote:

    Hmm, just looking for a lost frog I'm sure I left on Tonight. It didn't turn up here did it?

  99. At 07:53 PM on 17 Nov 2006, a beastie wrote:

    I listen to PM for two reasons. Firstly to be in time for the weather forcast (very important) and secondly to listen for the sound of ambulance sirens in the seconds before Big Ben chimes. If I hear several it might be worth listening to the News. But I will be certain to stay tuned if Charlotte Green is reading it! Sorry Eddie no offence, by the way is your middle name knight?

  100. At 10:17 PM on 09 Jan 2007, Bill'n'Ben wrote:

    We're going to try and start a forth dimension.

    Might see somebody soon.

  101. At 12:49 AM on 10 Jan 2007, RJD wrote:

    When you say "we" - who is included?

  102. At 01:21 AM on 10 Jan 2007, Bill'n'Ben wrote:

    Well it's not as comfortable as the original beach, but the staff seem kind enough, and there's nice thick padding on the walls.

    I think I'll enjoy it here.

  103. At 12:48 PM on 10 Jan 2007, Ed Iglehart wrote:

    Hi lads,

    Did you bring any supplies? I've brought a wee drop of Cardhu. so have a dram. Weed is asking about the 'new place' at fifi's pub building site ...

  104. At 03:15 PM on 10 Jan 2007, Bill'n'Ben wrote:


    I'm sorry mate, I did nick the barrel of Liffey, it's over there under the drape so the orderlies don't find it.

    I'm sure Little Weed wasn't showing an interest in following me to my padded cell.


  105. At 10:29 AM on 11 Jan 2007, Bill'n'Ben wrote:

    The Doctors have said that if we're good boys, they might let us walk around the grounds for half an hour, later.

  106. At 12:19 PM on 11 Jan 2007, Bill'n'Ben wrote:

    Well, they're letting us have a wonder for half an hour.

    I can't go to the beach next door, because they're building a Hypermarket, such a shame, such wonderful memories.

    Back soon.

  107. At 03:17 PM on 11 Jan 2007, Bill'n'Ben wrote:

    Back home. Ah that's better.

  108. At 10:45 PM on 11 Jan 2007, Ed Iglehart wrote:

    Have another Liffey and It'll all seem better. I'll join you, of course.

    Quiet here, isn't it? But nice.
    Vaya con Gaia
    11/01/2007 at 22:47:48 GMT

  109. At 11:34 PM on 11 Jan 2007, Bill'n'Ben wrote:

    Sorry about the delay in posting Ed, but I've just finished rebuilding the computer.

    Yes, I think I will have a Guinness (just seeing whether the mods will stop an advert). Tee Hee.

    You do realise of course matey, that people will think we're planning a conspiracy.

    But I don't care, I like my padded cell.


  110. At 08:20 AM on 12 Jan 2007, Bill'n'Ben wrote:

    The doctors are letting us out to do some work today. I'll be back later.

  111. At 01:39 PM on 12 Jan 2007, Big Sister wrote:

    Ah, I see, it's a Guy's place. I'd better leave you all to the Liffey.

    Nice to see you here, though. A cheery wave to you guys. Chill out and don't fight!

  112. At 02:17 PM on 12 Jan 2007, Ed Iglehart wrote:


    A mis-placed apostrophe? From you? and it's only only guys because there ain't no gals.


  113. At 11:07 AM on 13 Jan 2007, Bill'n'Ben wrote:

    Right before the staff notice that the hump under the duvet isn't me, I'm getting out of here.

    I'm off to Whittlesea, to see some Morris Dancers and hopefully to meet up with Fifi, see ya later.


  114. At 09:23 PM on 13 Jan 2007, Fifi wrote:

    Hey, I found the padded cell!

    I rather like it. So safe, and good company and a well-stocked (padded) bar. Less chance of banging my head on anything if I happen to have a little too much of anything later on...


    I've brought some garishly coloured scatter cushions, which will appease the trick cyclists but relieve the otherwise unrelieved whiteness of the decor here.

    Bill n Ben ... I hope you'll do full justice to our day out together at Whittlesey today! I have hinted at some goings-on at the beach but left you the field when it comes to details..............................

    Fifi xxx

  115. At 12:35 AM on 14 Jan 2007, Bill'n'Ben wrote:


    I have sent in a wonderful description, and we have only reached the bar, more will follow, but I have an uneasy feeling that I have been moded again. It hasn't appeared in over an hour.

    But this time I wasn't stupid, I wrote it in word and then pasted it. So the option that I've got now is to re post every thirty seconds till hell freezes over.



  116. At 04:13 AM on 14 Jan 2007, Bill'n'Ben wrote:

    Well I stayed on the beach till it did come through, and then got lost following the sign post.

    there you go.

  117. At 12:12 PM on 14 Jan 2007, Fifi wrote:

    SO and I are laughing hysterically at your description of yesterday's tryst.

    You have an evil, evil mind and I luv ya for it!

    More please......


  118. At 12:44 PM on 14 Jan 2007, Fifi wrote:

    By the way there's a new Beach today. If the orderlies let us out....


  119. At 07:51 PM on 14 Jan 2007, Fifi wrote:

    SO muttered that he was surprised it wasn't Placebo Domingo...

    I may never wash these hands again. Till the next time I have to cook after dressing the cat's wound anyway.


  120. At 10:51 PM on 14 Jan 2007, Matron wrote:

    Now then Bill'n'Ben, time for your medication.

    Are you going to go to bed quietly or must we use the restraints again?

  121. At 02:46 PM on 20 Jan 2007, Fifi wrote:

    Coo, quiet in here isn't it? Very peaceful.

    However I am going to try another Froggers' First:

    Back on the Beach, I am going to blog whilst trying out Big Sister's recipe for Chilli.

    Feel free to join me...


  122. At 06:18 PM on 20 Jan 2007, Bill'n'Ben wrote:

    Uhh, where am I? What day is it? What!! Did you have to sedate me for SIX days?

  123. At 06:47 PM on 20 Jan 2007, Bill'n'Ben wrote:

    Ooh, that's good news, they didn't find the Guinness. Time for a little one I think.

  124. At 10:45 AM on 21 Jan 2007, Fifi wrote:

    It's something like 5 hours since I posted here and nothing has appeared.

    I guess it's OK to be paranoid, here in the Padded Cell!

    Actually, as a fully paid-up Conspiracy Theorist, that's been said before...

    Fofo (just in case anyone's watching)


  125. At 10:51 AM on 21 Jan 2007, Fifi wrote:

    I think Guinness might be the missing ingredient in that chilli recipe.

    Better not tell me where you'd hidden it, BnB!

    These walls are rubbish for batting a ball against. What else is there to do in here?


  126. At 08:21 PM on 21 Jan 2007, Bill'n'Ben wrote:


    I HAD noticed that you didn't bring any to the beach.

    It couldn't have been that much of a disaster, could it.

    Next time you come down here the Liffey is under the tartan drape in the corner.

    What can you do here? Rock back and forth, mumble, and dream.

    Time for a pint, ooh quick, I can hear footsteps outside.

  127. At 08:32 PM on 21 Jan 2007, Bill'n'Ben wrote:

    Hello Doctor, what's all that equipment. I don't need electric shock therapy.

    NO, please doctor don't. Please NO. AAARRRGGHHH

  128. At 05:11 PM on 22 Jan 2007, Fifi wrote:

    There there, BnB, it was all a dream. Now, while Bobby is drying himself off after his shower, let's thee and me hie us down to the Beach for some of that chilli!

    Meanwhile I have invited Aunt Dahlia to try out the padded cell this evening. She is learning to sing the Raggle Taggle Gypsy and the noise is upsetting everyone in January.

    The soundproofing in here is pretty impressive actually. Do you think anyone would mind if we met here regularly with the other musical types for noisy rehearsals?

    Annasee could amp-up her harp, Mrs Trellis could crank up her electric guitar ... and WHO was it mentioned playing the ukulele, very early days on the Beach?? I can't believe I've forgotten. Aperitif and I can sing a bit, and I've got custody of Nigel - the Lying Scotsman's PA kit.

    Are there regulations about being noisy in here?

    Oh, and thanks for the Liffey my dear. Haven't had any since sickening myself of it at Bute Jazz Festival 15 years ago (when it was the only decent ale available anywhere on the island) ... I think I might be over that now.

    Fifi xx

  129. At 09:49 AM on 23 Jan 2007, Fifi wrote:

    Dear Moderators,

    There was nothing in last night's final posting here to offend or upset anyone. Not even any rhyming slang!

    So, where is it? Hmmmm?

    Or have I been sent here because of my recurring paranoia?


  130. At 03:32 PM on 23 Jan 2007, Bill'n'Ben wrote:


    Join the club my darling, paranoia, now you know how I feel.

    Time for a little pint or three.


  131. At 07:17 PM on 23 Jan 2007, Mrs Trellis wrote:

    Hi all, I thought, at Fifi's prompting, I would try the padded cell out for size. I don't know if this is the place for brevity or just another quiet corner of the beach but here goes.
    I am having a problem with the beach at the moment. I live alone and sometimes the beach seems to almost rub it in that the only social life I have is in a fantasy land. The upbeat and happy banter simply throws this into stark relief.

    I have started smoking again.

    5 Bl**dy months and all for nothing.

    It's strange but, when you live alone for any extended period (the rest of my life?) you tend to say things like: "Ha! I can do what I want, whenever I want and don't have to ask permission/agreement from any SO" but, the facts are that when you live alone, after a while, you simply don't want to do anything at all. You crave company and yet, you feel alone and uncomfortable in crowds. Paradox city.

    I tried Internet dating. Disaster!
    I went on a blind date with a friend, his SO and A N Other. A N Other went off with my friend and I ended the evening comforting his SO! A tad awkward.

    Well, now you all know why I go quiet sometimes. Probably not the place for all this and if I have caused any discomfort amongst you I apologise. Sorry. Had to say something and at least this is anonymous.

    B'n'B. I will have that pint now if there is one on offer.

  132. At 11:11 PM on 23 Jan 2007, Bill'n'Ben wrote:

    Mrs Trellis,

    In your last paragraph you said that this wasn't the place for this (If you were thinking morbid thoughts) then let me assure you this is the ONLY place for them.

    When I met Fifi last week she commented that I didn't talk about myself, I then spent umpteen days putting together an email that explained the situation. I won't repeat it here, but I think you might have a good idea where I'm coming from and why I spend most of my time in this nice little padded cell.

    Now unlike you I don't live alone but for all intents and purposes I might as well be. Either nobody here understands me, or they don't want to. The blog has been a release, but most of the time it does go straight over my head, but I think that's just me. Now baring in mind that this is an open channel, so to speak, one has to be careful what one says, feel free to come and have a chat with the loony whenever you want. I'm not promising that I'll give you sensible answers all the time though.

    Right cast your mind back to this posting.

    At 09:04 AM on 15 Dec 2006, Mrs Trellis wrote:

    B&B. I loved Sophie's world but much preferred the Solitaire Mystery. It is quite, quite beautiful.

    Now I know it wasn't advise, but I bought a copy of The Solitaire Mystery, on your recommendation. I haven't read it all yet, but my first impression was doesn't Jostein Gaarder confuse you with novels inside novels.

    As far as Sophie was concerned, and I'd like to expand this subject with you in further postings, if that's OK, it started me on the slippery slope of Philosophy. I explained to Fifi that the Romantics and their demise at the hands of Hegel and Kierkegaard with his ideas on existentialism, had totally flipped my head. Of course, I read more on the subject and did even more damage. It's quite funny how some people will quite merrily go into self destruct mode.

    Right then Mrs T, I'll leave it at that for the time being, as I said earlier you may well have a good idea where I'm coming from. You are more than welcome to visit whenever you like, lets face it, in reality it's the BBC's padded cell not mine.

    Brian xx

  133. At 11:18 PM on 23 Jan 2007, Bill'n'Ben wrote:

    Mrs Trellis,

    Also hidden under the drape is a bottle of Sapphire.

    Brian xx

  134. At 08:09 AM on 24 Jan 2007, Bill'n'Ben wrote:

    Mrs Trellis,

    How strange, I composed a reply to your (131),
    emotionally it was near the mark, so guess what? it's been moderated. If you want, I'll get your email address from Fifi, but I think we'll both need your permission first.

    Hang on in there, and don't forget, some people do care.

    Brian xx

  135. At 10:05 AM on 24 Jan 2007, Mrs Trellis wrote:

    Thank you my friend.
    I like it here.
    I have now read all of Jostein Gaarder's books and have found that whilst I enjoy the philosophical debate within I became increasingly uncomfortable with the religious aspects that crop up throughout his later books. As an atheist I think (I could leave it at that but that would be being flippant) I think that theological debates/arguments are a contradiction in terms whereas, philosophy is a wonderful field of study and debate.
    I hope that things improve on your side soon. I have been where you are now and know just how miserable things can get. The only ray of light I can offer is that when things come to a head they will be resolved one way or another and then it is like seeing the daylight again after being kept in a cell.
    Take care my friend.
    We don't know what we can or cannot do until we try.

  136. At 12:11 PM on 24 Jan 2007, Fifi wrote:

    I'm glad to see you two getting along so well, BnB and Mrs T. And that you're finding an oasis from the pressures of people down here.

    Brian - Philosophy leading to mental breakdown is the theme of Zen and The Art of Motorcycle Maintenance by Robert Pirsig. Have you read it?

    I'd be surprised if you haven't already - but if not -

    He writes of his own journey back to mental re-integration, after receiving ECT, when an obsession with discovering what 'Quality' is had led to the loss of his marbles.

    He goes on a motorbike ride across America with his young son and another couple. Among the philosophical musings and motorcycle maintenance tips, there are exquisite descriptions of what small-town America was like at the time of the journey (early 70s I think).

    I don't know if reading Zen would prove self-destructive Brian, but the ending of the book is incredibly uplifting.

    The experts advise Pirsig not to re-trace the steps that had led him into madness, because they say he'll just have another breakdown.


    He re-reads all his own diaries, that he has no memory of writing, and like a detective he pieces together the train of thought that have caused all the trouble first time around.

    Only, he is a different person now. And the conclusion he reaches can no longer harm him.

    Knickers to the experts!

    Fifi xx (one each)

  137. At 12:45 PM on 24 Jan 2007, Fifi wrote:

    Mrs Trellis - I grew up an only child, of painfully shy parents, in the middle of nowhere. Not a great start.

    In my 20s, a couple of years of living on my own, while SO was in Sodding Ar Abia (if you know what I mean) did something to me in my head that sounds remarkably like where you are now.

    Only, I was theoretically attached to someone. He just happened to be in a faraway place where I could only have visited if a) we got married and b) I wore a bag over my head every time we went anywhere.

    At least I had an excuse for never having a man out with me. I took to wearing a ring on my wedding finger so that men would leave me alone. Oh, how counter-productive that was. Silly Fifi!

    My salvation for part of year one was a divorced friend who'd just been dumped by her boyfriend. She was sick of her couple-friends inviting A N Others to dinner parties for her, and the way that sooner or later the female half of the couple would get 'funny' about her and the male half, even though nothing was going on.

    She also was getting fed up always being the one who'd ring around to rustle up a crowd to go bowling, or skating, or to an ice hockey game, or to the pictures.

    So, me and the cat went to stay with my friend for a few weeks.

    I suppose, in many ways we lived like many a boring married couple!

    I'd get home first in the evenings, take the cat for a walk, get the fire lit, start cooking something, put on some music. She'd come home to a warm cottage smelling temptingly of Delia Smith.

    'How was your day?'
    'Crap. Yours?'

    We'd go out to pubs with live music, notably the Beamish Mary at No Place near Durham. She, petite blonde. Me, tall blonde. And we both got chatted up all the bloody time, usually by beer-gutted middle-aged lorry drivers in teeshirts and black leather jackets, who clearly thought lines like 'Yur ma wee scotch bloo bell' were an irresistable turn-on. (A hint: it ain't!)

    On one occasion we actually legged it out of the Beamish Mary via the fire exit to avoid two such specimens. Another time we hid in the cellar after a ceilidh till our pre-booked taxi arrived, to avoid the earnest sweaty pale young man who'd been pursuing me all evening.

    Don't know why I'm telling you this really. It seems funny to me now; at the time it was just depressing!

    I don't think there is a Manual to tell you how to get from where you are to where you want to be. But spending a lot of time on your own isn't going to help, believe me.

    Even if you feel too fragile yet to get out and date much, there are other ways of keeping in touch with the world inhabited by other people. Email is one. Ringing round your mates for a night at the pub/cinema/bowling/circus is another. Pursuing a hobby with other people is another - form a band maybe? or go to a guitar workshop?

    It's not that any of these things lead to happiness and a fulfilling relationship. I don't think so, anyway. Do things with that objective in mind and you'll only meet the wrong people.

    I think it's more of a displacement activity, to keep your brain and your soul alive while you're healing. Like grieving, you can't hurry the process or skip a bit.

    Time doesn't heal. We heal ourselves. And I'm going to shut up now before I sound any more like a Californian self-help banker*.

    * FRS to the rescue!


  138. At 04:23 PM on 24 Jan 2007, Fifi wrote:

    Bill n Ben AND Mrs Trellis

    You may have to evict me from this place, if my Pollyanna-like optimism gets too irritating. It annoys me too, annoyingly...

    However I have a suggestion.

    If you find discussions here getting too personal for public airing, but would like to continue talking in private, I can put you in touch with each other by email -- if you both agree, obviously.

    Just ask.

    Now, who's for a very sinful Early Doors glass of something? I've stocked up the fridge with g&t and Liffey water....


  139. At 04:26 PM on 24 Jan 2007, Mrs Trellis wrote:

    Hi Fifi. You constantly amaze me. Not only a guru but a bl**dy good friend to boot! It's strange really because I know all you say is true and tell myself much the same thing all the time. Most days I am a perfectly "normal" person; I interact with others without a problem and yet sometimes it feels that I am just a bit part player in my own life.
    I promise that this is nothing to worry about and this episode will pass like all the others do. I am just waiting out the storm knowing that the sun will shine again soon. In the mean time, I am going to take shelter here with B'n'B. I have a feeling we have much to discuss and together and we may just be able to help each other in the process.
    BTW I too have read Zen and the art etc and loved it.

    Love this too:

    Had I the heavens' embroidered cloths,
    Enwrought with golden and silver light,
    The blue and the dim and the dark cloths
    Of night and light and the half-light,
    I would spread the cloths under your feet:
    But I, being poor, have only my dreams;
    I have spread my dreams under your feet;
    Tread softly because you tread on my dreams.

    W.B Yeats.

    It's the last two lines that stop my breath every time.

  140. At 04:29 PM on 24 Jan 2007, Fifi wrote:

    Oh, cr*p.

    My loooooong posting which I started to send at lunchtime, but which kept getting the Malicious Postings treatment, has appeared.

    If only I had known that before I went and re-sent it just now.


  141. At 04:46 PM on 24 Jan 2007, gossipmistress wrote:

    Mrs T - if I may be allowed to invade the padded cell for a minute? The beach may be a fantasy but the people on it are not, and look how you are missed when you're not around! So many messages asking where Mrs Trellis is when you don't post for a while...

    I think the Beach by its' very nature is a pretty upbeat place, so I tend to go there for a bit of fun. This doesn't necessarily represent how I feel all the time....there are definitely times when I'll read it but just be too miserable a b***** to post.

    There are also very many times when I feel I cannot contribute because I am far too ignorant of world affairs and not well read, and I am extremely impressed by your knowledge of philosophy - I've avoided it because I have this worry that if I think too much it will confuse me and make me depressed!

    I'm sure you don't want to hear my life history, but can only say that things often have a way of sorting themselves out and my best bit of advice on living on your own would be 'Never say no to an invitation' ..... whatever it is!

  142. At 09:21 PM on 24 Jan 2007, Fifi wrote:

    Gossipmistress, good to see you here.

    Sorry to hear you're yet another of the froggers who has these spells ... discussions on another thread somewhere suggest that at least half of us have had experience of it, and some of us aren't anywhere near out of the woods.

    The one thing you can be sure of, especially here and on the Beach, is that people won't judge you or intentionally make you feel worse.

    Mrs Trellis, I'm no guru but thank you - compliments are always lovely! I hope we will always be friends ... and I agree with GM that the froggers ARE real.

    We meet in a weird place, true. And we may not be what we all seem, but we are real people and a lot of us have revealed quite a bit about ourselves that we would not do except in trusted company.

    Now, get yourself over to the Furrowed Brow where I've put a big dollop of Big Sister's wonderful no-meat chilli on the sideboard.

    Five days after making it is absolutely gorgeous now. And you can have the recipe if you like!

    Fifi xx

  143. At 10:17 PM on 24 Jan 2007, Bill'n'Ben wrote:

    Wow, what a gathering,

    Evening all, yet another late night and another cr*p day, I must remember to stop arguing with the technical director, when he admits that I know more about printers than he does, I will.

    Right let's grab a Guinness first. AAH, that's better.

    Well it looks like the mods relented, because low and behold, my long posting is on tonight. It wasn't at 8 o'clock this morning.

    Mrs Trellis, there you have it, me in a very small nutshell. The sentiment is there though, come back when ever you want.

    Fifi, Ok, I've taken your advice and ordered the Zen Book. Right, so after the Mystery, its Zen and then I'll have another go at Plato's Republic (that was another one I failed at last time), I'm going to have my work cut out for me. Also Fifi you've got my email address, pass it over, I don't mind, and we'll take it from there, if that's OK with you Mrs T.

    Gm, I know that there are real people out there, and they are "friends", but I'm the same as you, most of the time I'm so depressed I just can't be ar*ed. Funny thing the mind ain't it, Sainty? Why do I keep talking like Jimmy Greaves?

    Right grab another pint.


  144. At 08:34 AM on 25 Jan 2007, gossipmistress wrote:

    Fifi (142) I agree very much about the weird/strange place on the blog - it's a whole different ballgame of communication isn't it? Because no-one knows me and can't hear the nuances of speech, I find it difficult sometimes to put my point across succinctly in a way that will say what I mean without including my whole background!

    It is very easy to be misunderstood by a slight tweak of a sentence! (and then I end up writing more posts to 'correct the first' etc etc)

    B&B (143) I think I may have even given a bit of the wrong slant in (141) above - what I meant was to reassure Mrs T that things can and will get better and have done for me, but that I still CBA sometimes and that probably she is not as alone as she might think. And in a strange cybery world we're all sort of friends! GMx

  145. At 08:43 AM on 25 Jan 2007, Mrs Trellis wrote:

    Fifi. I too have no objection to B'n'B having my email address. I have woken up this morning feeling strangely at peace and...erm...happy?! What on earth is happening to me? I'm fairly sure (for obvious reasons) that it is not the menopause, so why all these mood swings?

  146. At 10:17 AM on 25 Jan 2007, Big Sister wrote:

    BnB and Mrs. T,

    I've been led here by the recent comments route, otherwise I wouldn't have intruded. But having done so, I cannot leave without sharing something with you.

    You may have realised, depending upon how many of my postings you may have read, that I don't live alone these days, but this is a comparatively recent development. Much of what you've said has great resonances for me, so I'm going to share something with you which, I'm hoping, may bring some hope to you both.

    In the years of my early adulthood, I went through a number of situations which were deeply destructive for me. The repercussions of these went on and on for many years, and I could never find a 'haven' of inner happiness as a result. The more I searched, the more it eluded me. During the vast majority of that time, I was completely alone, apart from the solace of some good friends, who would listen and would let me share their better fortune from time to time. And so it went on.

    In time - a very long time - I took control of my life, and this in spite of other circumstances, to do with work problems, which were making life very hard in other respects. But it was the inner me who had to become reconciled with itself, and this did, finally, happen. Along with that came a feeling that I could cope alone and be happy with the situation.

    And it was at that stage in my life, when I had relinquished all hope of being in a happy relationship, that somebody came into my life. As it happens, that is now my SO. He, too, was deeply unhappy, but in a relationship of very longstanding. It wasn't an easy passage, but eventually our mutual support made it possible for him to feel strong enough to follow his heart, and for me to feel able to overcome my strong reservations about being part of a relationship breakup.

    We've now been together for several years. It isn't all plainsailing by any means, but we still know that we were, very unexpectedly, 'surprised by joy', and that our lives are now feeling infinitely more fulfilled.

    Believe me, it was the last thing I had expected. And that's one thing I've learnt about life: you never know what's around the corner, so don't ever give up hope.

    I'll not come back here as I don't want to be in your way.

    Big Sis xx

  147. At 12:35 PM on 25 Jan 2007, Fifi wrote:

    Wow, quite a day down here in the cell!

    I shall quickly put Mrs T and BnB in direct contact, then nip downstairs to make a spot of lunch.

    Yesterday I went mad and made 2 lots of soup, one of which is meat free.

    Turreens of both will be left simmering at the Beach if anybody here is feeling peckish. Even on a hot day, soup can be good!


  148. At 01:59 PM on 27 Jan 2007, Bill'n'Ben wrote:

    Well it's been a cr*p week, and I'm going to stay in bed all day.

  149. At 04:25 PM on 27 Jan 2007, gossipmistress wrote:

    BnB get out of bed! Come and do some Salsa dancing down on the Beach later on......

  150. At 11:04 PM on 27 Jan 2007, Ed Iglehart wrote:

    Long time no visits. Seem to be getting on allright and good to see the mutual support. Sign me up as another member of the Cannae be Bothered club. Had a bad case of it for a good few years, but life goes on.

    Have gotten started building a new 'retreat' just below the top of the woods. I hope the wireless will reach so I can frog from there. It just barely qualifies as a treehouse, sticking off a wee cliff between two spruces.

    I see there's a drop of Liffey, and I don't mind, thanks. Cheers Brian! (And all)

  151. At 01:44 PM on 28 Jan 2007, Bill'n'Ben wrote:

    Mrs Trellis(if you're still lurking?),

    Although this question may or may not have been asked before, my cell is just over the fence from the original DayOne beach; now is the beach on an island?

    If it is, could we create our own "pack of cards"? Would it be helpful? Just a thought.


  152. At 04:16 PM on 28 Jan 2007, Valery P wrote:

    Hmmm, to intrude or not? Perhaps better that I don't crack open the gates and unleash the flood that is my journey. Suffice to say that since last August, discovering you guys has given me the most wonderful release. I can't thank you all enough.
    You see before you another injured soul of long-standing. The rollercoaster ride that has been my inner path since early teens is a strange and awful thing. Outside, others see not a thing for me to complain about, (wonderful SO, family support, no obvious pressures) which makes it all so much harder - you beat yourself up because you are being ungrateful and self-obsessed.
    Teetering on the edge of thinking that this is a Confessional rather than a Padded Cell, so I must stop before I say too much more, but thanks to all for being around :o)

  153. At 07:04 PM on 28 Jan 2007, Ed Iglehart wrote:

    BnB! Are you OK?

    I've been building my own padded cell.

    Awful quiet or blogged up today. I've been away out of doors - cold and breezy but nice nailing weather. It's hard to stay depressed out in the woods, but I try.

    Time for a pint indoors by the fire.

    See y'all.

  154. At 02:30 PM on 29 Jan 2007, Fifi wrote:

    Valery, I think this is the perfect place for you. Under-populated, with the niceness of the Beach and the seriousness of the FB.

    I am sitting here in a corner, working away on a presentation for tomorrow, which hopefully will bring in some enjoyable PAYING!!! work next month.

    Papers and scribbles spread all over the place, inspiring books to plagiarise from (is that transitive or intransitive..?) and handy for the kettle and the redbush brainfood tea.

    Here we go again: deep breath, eyes screwed shut, and [dive] back into the creative mudpool once more.


  155. At 03:00 PM on 29 Jan 2007, Bill'n'Ben wrote:

    Well, here I was thinking that I was alone! I won't say it's nice to see so many people with my problem, because in all honesty I wouldn't wish, what I'm going through on my worst enemy. But what I'll try and say is that if any body feels the need to come here you are more than welcome.

    Val P, your roller-coaster is exactly how I described my life to Fifi, in an email. Most of the time it's terrifying because I know that I am just not in control.

    As I said to Mrs T, we do have to be guarded as to what we say on this open medium, but now it seems that there are so many of us there is now a need to set up an off lily-pad support group.

    I monitor this page more than anywhere else, please get back to me.

    That's if the mods let them through.

    Brian xx

  156. At 03:28 PM on 29 Jan 2007, Bill'n'Ben wrote:


    You're not building by the house, so it seems to me that it's not a replacement for the one that burned down. I saw the photo's and I'll admit I was in tears. Emotional old sod ain't I, but that's what my problem is.

    It looks like everybody is getting pi**ed off with the mods on the beach. I hope the cell can keep going till we get things organised.

    I don't know how I'm going to do it, as I'm as organised as a bag of worms.

    Keep in touch.


  157. At 04:18 PM on 29 Jan 2007, gossipmistress wrote:

    Ed - it's not very padded yet is it...

  158. At 04:36 PM on 29 Jan 2007, Valery P wrote:

    Hey chaps - thanks for that. Having this crutch kicked away from us at a whim doesn't help does it?

  159. At 08:31 PM on 30 Jan 2007, Bill'n'Ben wrote:

    I wonder if this will work tonight. Well I've finished The Solitaire Mystery, and I'm now onto Zen and the art of.

    I was quite when the blog wasn't working, although annoying, because I caught up on my reading.

    Am I talking to myself, what's new, I normally do.

    A little Sapphire to while away the hours.

  160. At 10:50 AM on 31 Jan 2007, Valery P wrote:

    I read Zen and the art of... many years ago. I'd love to say that I remember it, but I only remember enjoying it! I see my copy in the bookcase beside me (never throw anything away!) so I'll put it in the car in case I get a chance to refresh whilst TD is looking around Dundee Uni this afternoon. Off for a long drive now :o(, I hate driving somewhere where I haven't been before.....

    oh dear - too fast apparently! Yup, I have the book in my hand now and I see it says on the front that it will change the way I think and feel about my life. Ah, I see, maybe that's where I went wrong??? If I can't remember it, that's not so good is it? Watch this space.

  161. At 01:30 PM on 31 Jan 2007, Bill'n'Ben wrote:

    Nice to see you Val, be careful on that drive.

    What you'll have to remember is that I am a slow reader, so you'll have to wait a little while till I'm in a position to discuss it.

    Well I don't know what happened today, it started gloomily, as ever, but I now seem to be in the most positive frame of mind that I've been in for months.

    Possibly the new medication kicking in at last. Anyway this was just a quick look in while I was having lunch, back to work now. See you all later.


  162. At 01:37 PM on 31 Jan 2007, Bill'n'Ben wrote:

    Nice to see you Val, be careful on that drive.

    What you'll have to remember is that I am a slow reader, so you'll have to wait a little while till I'm in a position to discuss it.

    Well I don't know what happened today, it started gloomily, as ever, but I now seem to be in the most positive frame of mind that I've been in for months.

    Possibly the new medication kicking in at last. Anyway this was just a quick look in while I was having lunch, back to work now. See you all later.


  163. At 02:11 PM on 31 Jan 2007, Fifi wrote:

    I'm totally kissed* off with the blog today, having been told 5 or 6 times that I'm "not allowed to comment".

    * Fifi Rhyming Slang

    So, I have grumped down here to sit in the corner while I boycott all the other threads. In real life I'm actually having a good day ... it's just this stoooopid blog!

    I'm open to suggestions [well we all knew that Fifi!] for creating an off-lilypad facility so we can be more open amongst the favoured few, probably by round-robin email. It worked brilliantly while we were inventing what became the Furrowed Brow.

    First thing to do is find out who's interested.

    Me for starters ... and I happen to have most of the email addresses already, which means they can remain confidential --- if that's how we wish to do it.

    Over to you then.


  164. At 08:44 PM on 31 Jan 2007, Bill'n'Ben wrote:

    Well, the lights are off so I can't see who's down here with me, but the news is "It's Been a Good Day", and that's pretty rare for me.

    I've just emailed Fifi, with my angle about the off pad discussion group (that sounds so much better than self help). My personal view is direct email, but I'm not silly enough to post it here. If anybody wants to get in touch, then Fifi ,I think, has all of them on file. Don't forget though I'm only a patient not a doctor.

    I think I'm now over the frustration of the bloggages over the weekend, but in future I'm just going to sit in my cell and read.


  165. At 10:51 PM on 31 Jan 2007, Bill'n'Ben wrote:

    Right, it's getting late, I'll read the next few chapters in bed.

    G'night all.

  166. At 12:51 AM on 02 Feb 2007, Valery P wrote:

    I've come down here because I'm thoroughly ticked off with the tone of things at the mo. Call me paranoid, but why should we be getting blamed for double postings etc, when we have no way of knowing if they are going through?
    Daresay I'll relent tomorrow, we'll see.

    Zen went all the way to Dundee and back, and enjoyed the trip as far as I could tell. Still not re-opened yet though, so don't worry about speed reading B'n'B!

    Fifi - let me know what transpires with any kind of off-piste type thing. I'm game for anything! I so loved the Treat yesterday btw, and I'm going to try to get Tom's original, superceded MP3player functioning, so that I can copy it on. This will be a good kickstart, if I can do it.
    Night all, tomorrow is today already.

  167. At 08:18 PM on 02 Feb 2007, Bill'n'Ben wrote:

    Hello anybody who's lurking.

    Well it's been a hell of a week, but believe it or not, I'm still in a positive fame of mind. Yipee.

    Nice to hear that you back from Dundee safe and sound, Val. So far, Zen is making me think, and I'm realising how many "Johns and Sylvias" I know.

    Mrs Trellis, if you are about, I'm getting concerned about your non appearance. I know the blog is being a pain in the a*se, but just say hello.

    As Jock and Dougal would say, "You'll be having ya tea".


  168. At 04:11 PM on 03 Feb 2007, Valery P wrote:

    Indeed - Mrs T, where art thee? It's kinda quiet in here without you? You talk so much sense :o)

    Well, I've made a couple of posts today and they've actually gone through, but it's terribly unsettling all this nonsense isn't it? Many of us have taken this place on as part of our daily routine - and I hate change.......I also don't like confrontation.

  169. At 07:13 PM on 03 Feb 2007, Bill'n'Ben wrote:

    Well, I suppose it was too much to expect that this state of euphoria would last long. I feel like s**t. I'm in a hole, and they're filling it in already.

    I'm so brassed off with all this blog agro. First he tells us we're wonderful, and it's the best blog in history, then he turns and with a swift kick in the nuts he tells us it's all our fault. We didn't have all these problems when DayOne reached 1K and postings were going in every five minutes.

    The bloody cheek of the man. I bet its all because the BBC weren't allowed to put the license fee up as much as they wanted. So lets start cutting back, and as with education the first thing to go are the extra curricular activities. But he's still got the nerve to talk about it on the programme as though every thing is tickety boo.

    I'm just so disenchanted with every thing, is it really worth carrying on, probably not?

    Why is my life so s**t and what can I do to escape from it?

  170. At 07:21 PM on 03 Feb 2007, Bill'n'Ben wrote:

    Well, I suppose it was too much to expect that this state of euphoria would last long. I feel like s**t. I'm in a hole, and they're filling it in already.

    I'm so brassed off with all this blog agro. First he tells us we're wonderful, and it's the best blog in history, then he turns and with a swift kick in the nuts he tells us it's all our fault. We didn't have all these problems when DayOne reached 1K and postings were going in every five minutes.

    The bloody cheek of the man. I bet its all because the BBC weren't allowed to put the license fee up as much as they wanted. So lets start cutting back, and as with education the first thing to go are the extra curricular activities. But he's still got the nerve to talk about it on the programme as though every thing is tickety boo.

    I'm just so disenchanted with every thing, is it really worth carrying on, probably not?

    Why is my life so s**t and what can I do to escape from it?

  171. At 10:31 PM on 03 Feb 2007, FedUpFrogger wrote:


    I suspect what he posted in "A few hints" was advice that had been passed on to him. Don't blame the messenger eh?

    C'mon Bill'n'Ben. The description that you wrote about your encounter with Fifi was the most entertaining thing that I've read on the Blog since I came here. I'd like to hear more of that.

    Look, we all know that there is a lot of s**t about, but let's rise above it. I'm really disenchanted with this blog as well but I entertained myself with the Monty Python Parrot parody last night. Why should we be bloggered up just because other things are?

    Give me the third episode of the Fifi meeting and I'll respond with something more bizarre. Can you possibly ignore that challenge?

  172. At 11:18 PM on 03 Feb 2007, Fifi wrote:

    Bill n Ben ... ooh, yes, I'd like to see episode 3 of our meeting as well!!

    Actually though...

    It seems to me that our recent problems have coincided (oh, call me a Conspiracy Theorist if you want to..) with the promises Eddie made of improvements at the start of THIS month.

    * posted this (again) at 11.20pm


  173. At 12:39 PM on 05 Feb 2007, Mrs Trellis wrote:

    Hi all,

    sorry if I have been quiet of late but life in general has been abusing me and could not bare the thought of the blog doing the same (not you lovely bloggers, just the blog). ValP, Fifi and B'n'B thank you all for your concern/help believe me it is very much appreciated. I am still here but only lurking at the moment.
    Fifi know where I am.
    Fifi, a special mention in dispatches for you. You are a star.

  174. At 02:43 PM on 05 Feb 2007, Fifi wrote:

    Hey, I think the bloggage is unblogged!

    I've just posted twice, including the Beach -- from which I have been barred for days now.

    If this goes through, I'll announce an Armistice....


    PS Mrs Trellis, you're a gem yourself. xx

  175. At 03:40 PM on 05 Feb 2007, Valery p wrote:

    Hiya fellow celldwellers, I feel as if there may be light at the end of this particular tunnel? Thanks for all hanging on in there.

    FUFrogger - what a brilliant idea. Some of you are so witty and creative, let's have more! I noticed a quiet little post that got through last week from alurker, which gave me food for thought. They said they couldn't bear it if the Frog went bellyup because although they didn't post, the entertainment they got from reading our remarks is unsurpassed (I paraphrase). So we are all stars then, and are Doing A Public Service?
    Oh dear, I just got the malish fast message. I shan't leave till this goes through.....
    btw FUF, sorry about the random x that slipped thru on a maundering email at t'weekend, don't be worried about stalkers!
    I really shall not leave 'til this goes through

  176. At 12:42 AM on 06 Feb 2007, FedUpFrogger now RJD again wrote:

    Val - I should be so lucky!

  177. At 05:08 PM on 06 Feb 2007, Peter Curran Moridura wrote:

    5 p.m. news today re Cash for honours -
    "--- a Downing St. spokeman refuted---"

    A Downing Street spokeman did not 'refute' anything, he rejected the suggestion. Refute means disprove by argument or evidence.

    This is the latest outing for this misuse of 'refute' and 'refuted' by BBC reporters.

    Peter Curran

  178. At 09:54 AM on 07 Feb 2007, Gillian wrote:

    I think I've just found the back door to the Blog. Is it open, though?

  179. At 10:19 AM on 07 Feb 2007, Fifi wrote:

    Peter Curran Moridura : Let me introduce you to Valery. And to Big Sister. And to me, Fifi.

    We are all paid-up members of Pedants Anonymous, and while this blog isn't working very well we are to be found here



    Fifi ;o)

  180. At 05:02 PM on 07 Feb 2007, Fifi wrote:

    Testing... one TWO... one TWO... chew!... chew!... one TWO.

    Dare I suggest to the inmates that it's safe to return now?


  181. At 05:37 PM on 07 Feb 2007, gossipmistress wrote:

    Bill'n'Ben - are you hiding in your cell?
    Matron says it's time for your evening constitutional......

  182. At 09:52 PM on 07 Feb 2007, Bill'n'Ben wrote:

    Hello whoever's here.

    Typical day for me, sh*t, sh*t, quickly followed by even more sh*t.

    I need a pint, with a Diazepam chaser!!!

  183. At 10:36 AM on 08 Feb 2007, Aunt Dahlia wrote:

    There is an existential element to this blog at the moment. I blog therefore my virtual reality exists. And if I don't get through, what am I left with --

  184. At 11:07 AM on 08 Feb 2007, gossipmistress wrote:

    Hello B'n'B - was worried you hadn't managed to swim out to the liferaft. Luckily the padded cell is safe. Will Matron let you out to build a snowman?

  185. At 05:46 PM on 08 Feb 2007, Fifi wrote:

    This is just about the only part of the Blog that seems to be working properly!

    You keep it so nice, BnB.

    See you at the weekend folks. Out tonight, out all day tomorrow, no chance to frog alas.

    Stay safe everyone. Don't eat the yellow snow....

    Fifi ;o)

  186. At 10:51 AM on 09 Feb 2007, Valery p wrote:

    Tried and tried to post here last night, but this morning I can't remember what I was going to say.....

    Morning all, anyway. I've posted a few further along and (crosses fingers) they all went through first shot. It's nerve-wracking though, never knowing whether it's about to grind to a halt, isn't it? Jem Stone seems quite a character and very interactive, can that really be your name though Jem?

    Oh yes, I was trying to say something about yellow snow - the only time I enjoy hearing that remark is when Frank Zappa's singing it!

  187. At 05:18 PM on 09 Feb 2007, Bill'n'Ben wrote:

    Well, I've had a meeting with another shrink and now I'm even more confused.

    Bus train, train bus, bus train, train bus! Will this never end, somebody out there knows what I mean.

  188. At 06:02 PM on 09 Feb 2007, Fifi wrote:

    So sorry to hear that, BnB. Did he/she just not understand? Or not sympathise?

    What a crock of armpit*.


    * FRS

  189. At 06:45 PM on 09 Feb 2007, Fifi wrote:

    So sorry to hear that, BnB. Did he/she just not understand? Or not sympathise?

    What a crock of armpit*.


    * FRS

  190. At 06:50 PM on 09 Feb 2007, Fifi wrote:

    So sorry to hear that, BnB. Did he/she just not understand? Or not sympathise?

    What a crock of armpit*.


    * FRS

  191. At 01:12 AM on 10 Feb 2007, Valery p wrote:

    B'n'B - some of them are better than others, like all of us. My guess is you're a good guy. Keep in touch.

  192. At 11:46 PM on 10 Feb 2007, gossipmistress wrote:

    B'n'B do you have to go back to the same one? Or can you try another?

  193. At 04:19 PM on 15 Feb 2007, Fifi wrote:

    It's so quiet in here.

    I'm scared...


  194. At 12:02 AM on 16 Feb 2007, gossipmistress wrote:

    Hey don't be scared Fifi - here have some chocolate! Matron allows a medicinal dose on fridays.....

  195. At 12:41 AM on 16 Feb 2007, Valery p wrote:

    Chocolate - in the middle of the night? Tsk. I hope you remember to brush your teeth afterwards.

    Night All.

  196. At 05:46 PM on 16 Feb 2007, Fifi wrote:

    Any chocolate I get these days, I save up to put in Big Sister's chilli recipe (available on request).

    Trying it out on our veggie friends and the other Collywobblers (my old covers band, emphasis on 'old') tonight instead of listening to Any Questions with Mr Mair.

    Thanks though. I nibbled half a square before putting the rest in the fridge. Yum!


  197. At 12:46 AM on 17 Feb 2007, Valery P wrote:

    Fi, can you remember which thread you posted Big Sis's recipe on? Was it a Beach? Or perhaps Big Sis would repeat it?

  198. At 11:32 AM on 20 Feb 2007, Fifi wrote:

    Val - here it is again:


    Serves 6


    4 large onions, chopped

    1 large green pepper, seeded, chopped

    3 tbsps oil (I use sunflower or grapeseed
    as olive oil can be rather strong for this one)

    1 tbsp each mustard seeds and chili powder

    1 teaspoon each cumin seeds and unsweetened cocoa*

    1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon

    454 gm tin tomatoes, roughly chopped

    3 tins kidney beans (about 3lb cooked weight of kidney beans)

    tomato paste - about two tbsps

    *I mix the cocoa powder into a paste with vinegar, which helps develop flavours. Alternatively and even more deliciously, use the best dark chocolate you can afford, about 1/2 a bar will be gorgeous.


    Cook onions and green pepper in the oil over a medium high heat until onions golden and pepper is soft.

    Add mustard seeds and cook, stirring, for 1 minute.

    Add chili powder, cumin seeds, cocoa paste or dark chocolate, cinnamon, tomatoes and their liquid, beans and their liquid, and tomato paste. Reduce heat, simmering rapidly, uncovered, stirring frequently, for about 40 mins or until most of the liquid has cooked away and the chili has thickened. Do be careful or it will scorch!

    Season with salt to taste (may not be necessary with tinned beans).

    It can be served with relishes such as chopped tomatoes, diced green chilies, chopped cucumber, sliced onions, and/or grated cheddar cheese.

    It's delicious with rice or as a filling for jacket potatoes. Or just on its own.

  199. At 12:26 AM on 22 Feb 2007, Valery P wrote:

    Thanks, did you make some more to blast this latest cold?

  200. At 06:02 PM on 25 Feb 2007, Fifi wrote:

    I've just made the chilli again, and d'you know, I think it gets better every time I make it?

    It takes a few days to really reach perfection, so I won't leave any here just now. But I did buy some kettle chips -- cheese & onion flavour, although they are labelled in a far more fancy way than that.

    And I've got in some serious stocks of Liffey water... do tuck in!

    (Or am I talking to myself again....?)

    ;o) Fifi

  201. At 07:45 PM on 25 Feb 2007, Bill'n'Ben wrote:

    Hello Fifi,

    No you're not talking to yourself this time.

    They've just let me out of Rampton, I thought I'd walked into an episode of Devil's Kitchen?

    Liffey, I haven't had one of those for weeks.


  202. At 11:13 PM on 26 Feb 2007, Valery P wrote:

    Fi, thanks for the chili recipe, I haven't had a moment to make it yet, but I shall do in the fullness of time.

    The frog is awash with newcomers these days - which is nice, but I'm missing a lot of the oldsters too :o(. How's Mrs Trellis I wonder? BnB, I'm glad to see you down here, how about more than a bit part on the Beach though? I'm having one of those groups of days where I feel invisible, and wish I would just shut up. It'll pass, I daresay. Good night for now.

  203. At 02:42 PM on 27 Feb 2007, Fifi wrote:

    Bill n Ben, lovely to see you again.

    And Val too. I know what you mean about missing people. Mrs Trellis is still contributing jokes regularly, and the occasional dry comment on some of the ones I send, but we all seem to be a bit preoccupied in February these days.

    Maybe March will be more fun.

    Fifi xx

  204. At 11:38 PM on 27 Feb 2007, gossipmistress wrote:

    Val & Fifi - I agree, missing some people on the Frog. Aunt D only frogs occasionally, MadMary hasn't been around and whatever happened to Mrs Naughtie?

    Please tell Mrs Trellis we miss her Fifi!

  205. At 04:40 PM on 28 Feb 2007, Gossipmistress wrote:

    Grrrrrr! I've come down here for a rant.

    I have someone to do my tax return for me, which was completed last august, agreement signed, fees payed, and tax paid in full in mid January.

    Today, what do I get? An overdue Tax Return/Penalty Notice!!!

    On telephoning my tax adviser, it seems that I failed to sign one other bit and return it to them, so they didn't send off my tax return, despite cashing my cheque.

    It is now six months later, and nobody phoned to let me know my mistake, which may now cost me money in interest.

    They had better sort it out!


    OK, rant over, I feel better now :-)

  206. At 06:09 PM on 16 May 2007, f thompson wrote:

    Will Tony Blair's real legacy be signing away our constitution a couple of days before he leaves office when he attends the EU meeting? The German presidency is determined to move on from the NO results from France and Holland. We in Britain apparently don't have the right to a referendum anymore. What happened to that! And will he sign us away?

  207. At 08:00 AM on 18 May 2007, See no evil wrote:

    Whilst I have the deepest sympathy for the parents of young Maddy, I cannot help recall that it would be an offense in this country to leave young children alone even if the parents were popping in every half an hour. When Maddy is found as I hope she will be, is there not a lesson to be learned. I am sure Maddys parents will spend the rest of their lives regreting their decision.

  208. At 09:16 PM on 19 Jul 2007, Bill'n'Ben wrote:

    Is it working again?

  209. At 10:21 PM on 02 Aug 2007, Bill'n'Ben wrote:

    Sure looks like it. Yippppeeeee.

  210. At 09:20 PM on 04 Aug 2007, Bill'n'Ben wrote:

    Will this one appear???

  211. At 02:56 PM on 22 Aug 2007, RJD wrote:

    When and why did this start working again?

  212. At 09:39 PM on 22 Aug 2007, Bill'n'Ben wrote:


    I've just come back to check it again, and yipee it is.

    I'll have to move the barrel back in.


  213. At 08:01 PM on 23 Aug 2007, Bill'n'Ben wrote:

    I've just been given the Deathly Hallows, so I'm going to read the whole series again first.

    Good thing I've got a barrel of Liffey and two bottles of Sapphire.



  214. At 09:17 PM on 23 Aug 2007, Fifi wrote:

    'Deathly Hallows' sounds intriguing.

    Do tell!

    Fifi xx

  215. At 11:46 PM on 24 Aug 2007, RJD wrote:

    We look before and after,
    And pine for what is not;
    Our sincerest laughter
    With some pain is fraught;
    Our sweetest songs are those that tell of saddest thought.

  216. At 08:39 PM on 27 Aug 2007, Bill'n'Ben wrote:

    Well I've just taken my medication, I think I'll just slide into this comfortable jacket. Ho hum.

  217. At 10:47 PM on 14 Sep 2007, Bill'n'Ben wrote:

    I've just heard the magic word "Liffey" coming from the beach.

    Now if only I could get out of this jacket??


    The cunning plan worked captain Blackadder.

    We're off.


  218. At 09:31 PM on 05 Dec 2007, Bill'n'Ben wrote:

    It ain't working any more.


  219. At 07:07 PM on 19 Dec 2007, RJD wrote:

    Gosh, but it's nice and quiet here. Was given a bottle of Jameson's today and I think I'll have a small glass. Anyone else? Ah!!! I think I'll doze for a while. Wake me up if . . . . .z.z.z.zzzz

  220. At 08:22 PM on 20 Dec 2007, Bill'n'Ben wrote:

    Hey, RJD.

    Welcome to the club, it is very select over here.

    I think I'll join you with a laaaarrrrge gin and tonic.

    A word of warning though, watch out for the nurse in the light green uniform, I think she's an alien.


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