Monday, February 23, 2009

La Créativité dans la Cuisine

Vous prenez deux pommes de terre dans son filet. Vous prenez également un saucisse de Strasbourg. Il faut que les patates ne doivent pas trop grandes. Si leur peau est un peu ridée tant mieux.
Puis, vous faites de votre mieux pour être aussi créative que possible. Reflichissez bien des toutes les possibilités.

Moi, je me suis régalé.

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Friday, February 20, 2009

Friday Caption Competition

OK, I'll try and make this a regular thing. People come to visit, and they bring airport novels with them and leave them behind. I love books and can't bear to throw them away, even pulp fiction. Most end up at a book exchange.

But I'll send one to you if I like your submission for a caption to the photo below of our glorious statuesque president and his rather dowdy wife.

Give me a winning caption and If you win you can later email me your address and I'll send you your choice of one of the following books:
Alan Titchmarsh: Rosie
Jonathan Tropper: How To talk To A Widower

Sarah Harrison: The Grass Memorial

Marcia Willett: Winning Through

Andrew Goss: The Dark Tide

Hey? What? How's that for Red Hot? Big Prizes!! Fame and Fortune!
Remember you can always stipulate that I DO NOT send you one of these books if you find them all equally horrible. But Spring is on its way and you need a pot boiler to read while you sit in the deckchair with a hankie hat on your head.


Thursday, February 19, 2009

Financial Crisis & The Tile factory

"La Crise"

What with La Crise & the erosion of our "pouvoir d'achat" the french are more depressed and pessimistic than usual.

Pessimists! I swear, every time I go into the café to ask for advice or opinions all I get is "o la la" and hand waving. Like when I was after advice on installing an arial aireal aereal une antenne. But that can be another post another day.

Because of the big recession, nobody is building any new houses. So the demand for roof tiles has dropped. We have a yard full of product and sales are way down. So the factory has to cut production. But it would be mad to have staff hanging around being paid to do nothing, so the first thing they did was drop all the interim staff. That enabled them to cut a team.

We usually run with 5 teams and the presses turning 24/24. Last year on the accessories lines we even had a sixth team running during day shifts. In January it was announced that they need to lose 18 more people. If they can find these 18 through voluntary reduncancy, early retirement etc then there won't be any need to fire anyone.

The worrying thing for me is that I was one of the last people taken on full time contract. So if the operate a "last in, first out" system I'm at risk.

Rumour is that they already have eight or nine who have agreed to leave. In the meantime though I'm going to get the whole family down to the dentist and the optician to get the maximum out of the company's medical aid just in case I am axed.

The last few months I've been really hating this job, but there's nothing like the threat of "chomage" to make you appreciate employment.

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Tuesday, February 17, 2009

The Bad Blogger

So, no blog entries since 8th December.

This is due to:
a. Fuck all happens
b. Life
c. An excellent young forum of nice clever people: Come play with us.
d. French stuff that was novel and amazing 5 years ago has now become routine. I need to rediscover some innocence and a sense of wonder.

My apologies for all those who clicked and saw the same page week after week.

Stuff I have failed to blog on and will try and catch up:
New Years Eve at the salle des fetes
Comic Book festival at Angouleme
The Tile Factory rocked by the financial crisis

Yesterday I finally got the bike out and cycled to work. 3:00am and -4C degrees! Yow! Worse than the cold was my utter lack of fitness and wobbly legs. I'm in lycra & jacket right now about to jump on the bike to go to the midday shift (+5C degrees).

On the scales I am 87kilos (192lbs) Who ate all the pies? That puts me 20lbs overweight. Fuck, that's a lot of cycling and lettuce.

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Sunday, February 15, 2009

Pretentious book meme

From nullifidian

This meme is all over the web.

Apparently the BBC reckons most people will have only read 6 of the 100 books here.

I've tried to track this back to source, but failed. It sometimes leads to The Big Read, but I can't find the original claim for "the average adult will only have read 6 of the books on this list" I think it's bogus. I reckon the average is more like 25 and most decently read people will be in the 40 to 60 mark.



1. Look at the list and put an ‘x’ after those you have read ENTIRELY
2. Add a ‘+’ to the ones you LOVE.
3. Star (*) those you plan on reading.
4. Tally your total at the bottom.

My reading list:

1. Pride and Prejudice - Jane Austen X
2. The Lord of the Rings - JRR Tolkien X
3. Jane Eyre - Charlotte Bronte X
4. Harry Potter series - JK Rowling
5. To Kill a Mockingbird - Harper Lee *
6. The Bible X
7. Wuthering Heights - Emily Bronte
8. Nineteen Eighty Four - George Orwell X
9. His Dark Materials - Philip Pullman
10. Great Expectations - Charles Dickens X
11. Little Women - Louisa M Alcott
12. Tess of the D’Urbervilles - Thomas Hardy
13. Catch 22 - Joseph Heller X
14. Complete Works of Shakespeare
15. Rebecca - Daphne Du Maurier
16. The Hobbit - JRR Tolkien X
17. Birdsong - Sebastian Faulks X+
18. Catcher in the Rye - JD Salinger X+
19. The Time Traveller’s Wife - Audrey Niffenegger
20. Middlemarch - George Eliot
21. Gone With The Wind - Margaret Mitchell
22. The Great Gatsby - F Scott Fitzgerald *
23. Bleak House - Charles Dickens X
24. War and Peace - Leo Tolstoy
25. The Hitch Hiker’s Guide to the Galaxy - Douglas Adams X+
26. Brideshead Revisited - Evelyn Waugh *
27. Crime and Punishment - Fyodor Dostoyevsky
28. Grapes of Wrath - John Steinbeck X+
29. Alice in Wonderland - Lewis Carroll X
30. The Wind in the Willows - Kenneth Grahame X+
31. Anna Karenina - Leo Tolstoy
32. David Copperfield - Charles Dickens X
33. Chronicles of Narnia - CS Lewis X
34. Emma - Jane Austen
35. Persuasion - Jane Austen X
36. The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe - CS Lewis X
37. The Kite Runner - Khaled Hosseini *
38. Captain Corelli’s Mandolin - Louis De Bernieres *
39. Memoirs of a Geisha - Arthur Golden
40. Winnie the Pooh - AA Milne X
41. Animal Farm - George Orwell X+
42. The Da Vinci Code - Dan Brown X
43. One Hundred Years of Solitude - Gabriel Garcia Marquez X
44. A Prayer for Owen Meaney - John Irving
45. The Woman in White - Wilkie Collins
46. Anne of Green Gables - LM Montgomery
47. Far From The Madding Crowd - Thomas Hardy *
48. The Handmaid’s Tale - Margaret Atwood
49. Lord of the Flies - William Golding X
50. Atonement - Ian McEwan *
51. Life of Pi - Yann Martel
52. Dune - Frank Herbert X
53. Cold Comfort Farm - Stella Gibbons X
54. Sense and Sensibility - Jane Austen
55. A Suitable Boy - Vikram Seth *
56. The Shadow of the Wind - Carlos Ruiz Zafon
57. A Tale Of Two Cities - Charles Dickens X
58. Brave New World - Aldous Huxley X
59. The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time - Mark Haddon
60. Love In The Time Of Cholera - Gabriel Garcia Marquez X
61. Of Mice and Men - John Steinbeck X+
62. Lolita - Vladimir Nabokov *
63. The Secret History - Donna Tartt
64. The Lovely Bones - Alice Sebold
65. Count of Monte Cristo - Alexandre Dumas
66. On The Road - Jack Kerouac *
67. Jude the Obscure - Thomas Hardy
68. Bridget Jones’s Diary - Helen Fielding X
69. Midnight’s Children - Salman Rushdie *
70. Moby Dick - Herman Melville X
71. Oliver Twist - Charles Dickens X
72. Dracula - Bram Stoker
73. The Secret Garden - Frances Hodgson Burnett X
74. Notes From A Small Island - Bill Bryson X
75. Ulysses - James Joyce X
76. The Bell Jar - Sylvia Plath *
77. Swallows and Amazons - Arthur Ransome
78. Germinal - Emile Zola
79. Vanity Fair - William Makepeace Thackeray X
80. Possession - AS Byatt
81. A Christmas Carol - Charles Dickens X
82. Cloud Atlas - David Mitchell
83. The Color Purple - Alice Walker
84. The Remains of the Day - Kazuo Ishiguro *
85. Madame Bovary - Gustave Flaubert
86. A Fine Balance - Rohinton Mistry
87. Charlotte’s Web - EB White
88. The Five People You Meet In Heaven - Mitch Alborn
89. Adventures of Sherlock Holmes - Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
90. The Faraway Tree Collection - Enid Blyton X
91. Heart of Darkness - Joseph Conrad *
92. The Little Prince - Antoine De Saint-Exupery
93. The Wasp Factory - Iain Banks X+
94. Watership Down - Richard Adams X+
95. A Confederacy of Dunces - John Kennedy Toole *
96. A Town Like Alice - Nevil Shute X
97. The Three Musketeers - Alexandre Dumas
98. Hamlet - William Shakespeare X
99. Charlie and the Chocolate Factory - Roald Dahl X
100. Les Miserables - Victor Hugo

Total 42/100

Why is Lion Witch & Wardrobe doubled up by Narnia Chronicles?

I ain't tagging no-one. If you like give it a go.