Sunday, 31 July 2011

Good News and Bad News in the Garden

We were chuffed to see one of our frogs this week, dark brown so hard to spot, but there he was on the grass the size of a 50p piece. We'll have to be careful where we walk!

Sadly one of the goldfish in the pond died. We don't know why, he was one of the smaller ones and is just floating. We left him a few days to make sure he wasn't just over-fed or similar... poor little fishy.

That's the breaking news from our garden.

I wonder if Mr Obama takes time out to read this? ;-)

Saturday, 30 July 2011

Defend the Seal of Confession

Some Irish politicians are ranting against the Seal of Confession. They claim it is used to stop crimes being reported to the police. In truth this is an age-old argument. I am sure similar spin was used in Napoleonic France, Hitler's Germany, various Communist states, Masonic post-Revolution Mexico and in many other times and places.

The church may be many things at the moment but for thousands of years it was not stupid. Confession is a Sacrament.It is a gift from God. Take away the Seal of Confession (which basically prevents the priest repeating anything said in the Confessional or using info thus gained in any way) and people would stop going to Confession.

The priest is acting as Christ (as when he stands at the Altar at Mass) and one cannot imagine Christ repeating sins told to him to anyone. The priest may well tell the penitent that in order to be absolved of a heinous crime the penitent himself must make restitution - e.g. tell the police or replace some stolen item or its worth.

But the idea of breaking the Seal of Confession would break Confession itself. We are all failing humans, falling far short on many occasions, and so when we go to Confession the act itself can be far from glorious, even if the outcome is. It is vital therefore that the transgressions Confessed to God (large or small, and with most people I am sure it is a litany of personal faults and shortcomings that Our Lord has heard a thousand times), are retained by God only.

Otherwise we risk the State gaining information and using/misusing/abusing said information for its own nefarious ends. We may not live in France 1789, but who knows what is around the corner?

So please, don't believe the hype! As we have seen in more recent weeks much of the media cannot be trusted. It is not (always) altruistic. It has an agenda.

Confession is good for the soul. Break the Seal of Confession and it will be terminally undermined.

To St Peter's (Roath)! It may be a long protest - so feel free to bring a keg of Brains and some reduced 10p bags of doughnuts. I'll bring the fat rascals.

Thursday, 28 July 2011

Amy Winehouse and Mr. Hurley: the Conspiracy Starts Here

I get a lot of visitors to my blog - ah! searchers for Truth in this mad world! - some of whom come across my wittering and blarney whilst searching for the most weird things.

Two days ago someone from a place called Spring, Texas come across my blog by searching for:

amy winehouse and mr hurley, who is mr hurley.

Cue the eerie music!!!

Who indeed is Mr Hurley? The plot thickens!

May I also just quickly add that I have an alibi, and I was also elsewhere when Michael Jackson died.

All further enquiries can be addressed through my lawyers: Sue, Grabbitt and Runn.

Monday, 25 July 2011

How to Embarrass a Teenager When it Rains

Our eldest approached me today to state that he was going out, and did I think he needed a jumper.

I stroked my chin, like a sage fathoming the mysteries of the universe, and gave my considered opinion "you should be alright because it's quite humid out, but it could cloud over and rain, so why not take a mac?"

This instantly aged me and he gave me a puzzled and bemused look which, in an instant, silently said (all at once):

"You are joking right?"
"With my street cred?"
"I'm not homosexual you know."
"I'm not entirely sure what a "mac" is but I assume you mean a jacket of some sort."

As he headed for the door with my words of wisdom ("be careful") wringing in his ears I called after him "but what if it rains?" (I know, how sad and old am I that I worry about such things on his behalf?).

"Don't worry," he said as nonchalantly as you like, "I'll phone mum and she can drop something off for me."

With the closure of the door I couldn't work out if his teenage brain had worked out a subtly funny thing to say to wind-up his old dad, or (used as they are to having mum clean up after them at every turn) he half-meant it. In reflection it was definitely the former because how "uncool" would it be to have your mum roll up to you and your friends carrying an "emergency jumper?"

However it didn't stop me thinking ahead for just such an occasion, and so I might, just might, purchase a suitable item of clothing for just such an occurrence:

OK. Such things cost money and so you and I know that the famous Hurley wallet will remain firmly shut (I am my father's son). But what a deliciously naughty and lovely idea.

Sunday, 24 July 2011

Thora and I: Kindred Spirits

I was disconcerted the other day to see the Google-generated ads on the side of my blog were promoting stair lifts.

Am I really getting that old that I have become the Thora Hird of the blogosphere? So it would seem.

Now for a nice pot of tea and some (Yorkshire) fat rascals!

Who is this shuffling, decrepit figure darkening my door? Ah! 'Tis Dotage. Welcome dear friend, I have felt your impending arrival for some time...

Thursday, 21 July 2011

Fat Rascals to the Rescue!

GKC - the original "fat rascal?"
Yes, Fat Rascals.

Sounds like some sort of band of anti-establishment superheroes. One can imagine Belloc and Chesterton being described as Fat Rascals in atheist and banking circles back in the day.

I have been called many things, and not all of them nice, dear reader!!! Some not even suitable for a family blog like this. Can you imagine? Tut tut. Some people. But a fat rascal?

Now Mrs H is a bit of a cook. She has to be because teenage children are like gannets. Our fridge needs a revolving door. Orange juice, has a shelf like of mere hours. Strawberries of minutes. It's not so much three meals a day as four or five, with snacks and other bits for the hungry hordes.

Perhaps they are part Hobbit? That would explain the hairy feet and second breakfasts. But that would make me part-Hobbit too, so I think I'll quit that theme.

The other day Mrs H put a platter of something new on the kitchen table, on a cake stand (with cover) we have. A bad idea really because it protects the displayed items from the summer's flies - which means we all get to see the goodies and be tempted to nibble at every hour of the day. How wonderful.

And the name of these "new" treats? Fat Rascals.

One from Betty's (all ours have been eaten)
Apparently they are a Yorkshire treat, made famous via Betty's Cafe Tea Rooms, and that is all well and good. They are surely going down a treat in our humble home.

With their glacé cherry eyes and almond teeth, they are hideously ugly, so I feel they are kindred spirits - yet I take a strange delight in nibbling away at their visages

Try them yourself:

Fat Rascals BBC Recipe Page

Wednesday, 20 July 2011

Of Hearts and Brains

Check out this post on Linen on the Hedgerow blog. There is talk of having one's heart interred at the Brains Brewery.

I can sense Old Pa Hurley getting quite excited.

Brains could charge for such a placement, but it could be argued that he has already bought his alcove, many times over.

I can see the casket now, with a crest of a Brains glass, a Papal seal, ancient football and cricket balls and a mop of hair argent. Motto: Crura Exinani Hurley - Unas Pro Iter.

Monday, 18 July 2011

Relative Confesses to Tramp Friend - On TV

Gandalf without the hat
I had a text the other day from a relative who shall remain nameless (hi mum) who had felt honour bound to confess that her friend was a tramp.

'That's no way to talk about dad' I thought. OK, he might occasionally walk sideways as he ambles down Albany Road, but let's have some respect here!

On closer inspection the text said her friend and neighbour was playing a tramp on the TV series 'New Tricks.'

He was seen drinking, abusing the police and throwing a brick, all very convincingly! I wonder if he had used any nearby people as role models? Was that a bag of reduced 10p doughnuts in his hand?

There was also an unkempt ex-tramp in a Catholic nursing home. So many role models in one episode. Did they give Old Pa Hurley any royalties???

New Tricks Episode 8.2

Sunday, 3 July 2011

A Tale of Two Hurleys: Different by Degrees

Congratulations to Rachel Hurley - my niece - on getting her degree at Aberystwyth University!

And me with barely a CSE (yes that's in old money) from the kindergarten of hard-knocks.

Well done Rachel - you are an inspiration to us all.

A real, live graduate in the Hurley family. Who'd have thunk it?

In the meantime, South Wales Police (the rozzers) have put out a warning about a man claiming a false graduation status who has been called the "Pa Boswell Con Man of Cardiff."

The police have warned pub landlords to be aware of a septuagenarian with a shock of white hair going by the pseudonym "Happy Joe" who claims to be a graduate from the Brains Beer Academy & Taste Centre. He has been seen in the Roath area demanding free beer from bar staff.

In a particularly disturbing episode he was last seen being ejected from The Claude public house after flashing an ID Card (actually an OAP bus pass) to one of the clientele and asking that he be allowed to "test" his pint on behalf of "the Brainsh Acado... Acerda... Occor... er Shpecial Shchool." When refused he swung a Tesco bag (believed to contain multiple discounted doughnuts) towards the customer, missing him by several feet and sending 'Happy Joe' spiralling to the floor, from whence he was collected by the door staff and ejected.

The police have issued this photo-fit of the suspect: