29 October 2006

moving on

herself is getting a bit irate at the blogging thing going haywire. so it seems my blog may be moving to another place. it looks pretty much the same to me except the pictures are a bit bigger, which will be nice. my rather distinguished features will be more clearly visible to my public.

so if you would like to keep up with my news, you can find me here!
it might be worth you adding a new bookmark so you can find it. or even clicking the little orange thing in the address bar which i am told is a live bookmark. you will have to ask someone else what they are but hopefully they don't eat your books.

i will also try to keep technically challenged folks up to date if herself can get this old blog to work...


Originally uploaded by Joker the Lurcher.
i am pleased to report that the new spray helped with the old nerves. still a little shaken by the loud bangs and crashes but managed not to disgrace myself. the peeps has company for dinner and in spite of several attempts on my part the most i managed to glean were some prawn shells. couldn't get near the delicious smelling fish stew and even more wonderful beef stew.

the burping pineapple had a brief outing but had to be confined to barracks after burping too much. but a fun time was had by all...

28 October 2006


at the vets
Originally uploaded by Joker the Lurcher.
a most unsettling start to the day. rudely awakened by herself at about 10am. i usually like a lie in on a saturday but hereslf craftily waved the lead at me to give the impression we were off for a run. however, it swiftly became clear that a run was not what was planned.

there are a very limited number of places that i can be taken for a run. this is because of the incident with the car. some years ago i was out with himself in some woods near where we live. a rather foolish deer ran right in front of us and of course, my genes being what they are (a chap's at the mercy of his genes) i had to give chase. the problem with lurcher genes is they also have a setting which switches off all the useful controls such as pain monitoring and road sense.

all of a sudden boof! there i am lying on the road with a crowd of people round me. a large pool of blood is rapidly spreading which it dawns on me is from my front leg. there is an old man whose car it was that hit me and some younger people talking into phones. then herself and my boy arrive in what can only be described as a manner more suited to a car chase in a computer game. i am put on a blanket and into the back of the car and whisked to the vets. what follows is a blur. it seems i had split an artery in my leg which would explain the extreme lightheadedness and the copious amounts of blood.

it appears that my boy was a complete star. people with beefburger syndrome find change difficult. things happening out of the blue are not easy for them. but because my boy knew herself was helping the vet stem the blood he just stood where he was told and didn't attempt to take anything apart in the vets surgery, thus allowing them to fix me up. the next few days were touch and go and herself had to sleep on the floor with me the first night. but slowly i recovered and i'm now right as rain apart from some new scars for my extensive collection.

the upshot of this was that i am no longer allowed off the lead anywhere near roads. so i knew this morning that we were not heading towards a walk. au contraire, we were going to the vets. the vets is not my favourite place. there is nothing wrong with the people there. it is just that every time we go there they stick needles in me and put nasty things in places they shouldn't to see if i have a temperature.

i have been to the vets more than most, largely due to incidents such as the one i describe above. as well as having troublesome genes, we lurchers also have thin skin. if you add to this recipe living in an area with a lot of flints you will begin to get my drift. i have had more cut paws and legs than you have had hot dinners. herself is forever saying how glad she is that she took out vet insurance for me.

today's trip was one of the less traumatic ones. it seems all we were there for was to get some spray. this is to calm me down while the peeps are at tonight's firework display. it will be sprayed on a sock and then fixed on my collar and i will slide into a state of tranquility. this is good. the fireworks are very loud and even a laid-back chap like myself can get the collywobbles at times.

so peace and love dear readers, have a thoroughly chilled and karmic evening...

26 October 2006


i had to wait until after lunch for my walk yesterday. not sure if this is a development i welcome. usually i get to go first thing and then again before tea. the reason for this neglectfulness on the part of the peeps was that they went to lunch with their new friends round the corner. these are the people with the wild girl who likes my boy's burping pineapple.

it seems that the wild girl may also have beefburger syndrome but the people round the corner are waiting for a doctor to tell them for sure. i have never understood why it is necessary to have doctors to tell you this sort of thing. it seems to me that the people who live with a beefburger person would know pretty soon what they were dealing with. you would only have to listen to my boy talking about harmonic vibrations in the kitchen table while having his hair cut by our visitng hair-slayer to know he was something special. however it seems that you need a doctor to say so in order for the outside world to believe you.

i must say it is very nice for the peeps to have friends round the corner who understand beefburger syndrome. it means they don't have to spend the whole time apologising for my boy's occasionally eccentric behaviour and they can get on with relaxing and having a good time. the people round the corner also have a son who is the same age as my boy. they have become firm buddies. together they spend hours building shopping malls on the computer and altering the code in all the games to make them more exciting. personally i find the games plenty exciting enough but, hey, what would i know?

anyway, the peeps went round for lunch. i believe wine was taken. herself thinks it is very cool to have found a friend round the corner who drinks wine at lunchtime. she does have other friends with equally decadent habits, mrs prof to name just one, but none that live within walking distance of the house. to my mind this is the start of the slippery slope. usually herself has to drive to wherever she is meeting her friends which precludes her partaking in wine. i forsee all sorts of debauchery. luckily she is usually at work which keeps her on the straight and narrow but this week she is on holiday, hence the slackening in standards.

as well as spending hours eating lunch when she could have been striding across the downs in the pouring rain with me, herself has taken up backgammon. when i first heard about this i was thrilled. herself has refused to eat anything furry for years. recently himself has started bringing rather nice meaty things into the house and i occasionally get to eat the leftovers but these tend to be rather scant. regular readers will recall that himself is on a special diet which means he can only eat meat and mustn't have anything healthy so he does tend to wolf it all down with scarcely a thought for yours truly. the thought of herself taking up a gammon habit sounded very promising.

but my joy was short-lived. it seems backgammon has nothing to do with back or gammon. it seems to be a very complicated game involving moving in a random fashion round a board with little counters. it also involves being able to count which i would have said puts it way above the capability of herself, particularly if drink has been taken. however she is persevering with trying to learn. which meant himself drew the short straw and came with me on a mercifully brief jaunt into the storm.

25 October 2006

divine justice

sleeping (b&w)
Originally uploaded by Joker the Lurcher.
it seems that herself is finally getting her own back. for years, and boy do i mean years, himself has kept the walls of the house trembling with snoring that can only be described as biblical.

for a long time himself refused to believe he snored, in spite of evidence of tape recordings made by herself in desperation when she couldn’t sleep. witnesses in the form of insomniac visitors did nothing to persuade him. even when camping, when the people in the neighbouring tents glare at him in the mornings having been kept awake by his nocturnal rumblings, he refuses to believe that he snores. on one camping trip, friends of the peeps who were camping next door, went for a late night walk round the campsite. from the other end of the place, about 100 yards away, they could still hear him. but himself remained unconvinced.

my boy blissfully sleeps through all this. in a rare moment of lucidity when he was a little pup the peeps decided that creeping around trying to be quiet would lead to him being a light sleeper and that he needed to be conditioned to noise so he would sleep through it. so they crashed around and played loud music and sure enough, my boy can now sleep through anything. even himself’s snoring.

but herself has fared less well. she was obviously not exposed to loud noise as a baby. although from what i hear of the grandfolks they weren’t above throwing plates at each other but perhaps they used plastic ones when herself was small. so herself is woken by pretty much anything. this by all accounts got worse after my boy was born.

my boy did not see the point in sleeping at night. or even in the day very much. the peeps spent many hours pushing him round the house in his pram. they never ventured out shopping with it, as it defeated them getting it through doors. but it was good for rocking him to sleep. however the minute they stopped he would open one eye as if to say, ‘well, why have you stopped?”

now they know he has beefburger syndrome and adhd it has all become clear. such people do not sleep much when they are pups. they need to be constantly moving. if only they had known that then. they could have simply built him a little treadmill and got him to generate all the electricity for the house. instead herself at moments of extreme sleep deprivation resorted to sitting him in front of the telly.

unfortunately in those days the peeps did not have sky tv. so all that was on the telly at 3am was horror movies. my boy was exposed to more zombies than most as a pup. doesn’t seem to have done any harm though. he can shoot the bad guys in his computer games without a backward glance.

anyway, i digress. herself has finally found out how to get her own back on the snore monster. at about 5.30am i was awoken by himself stumbling around getting dressed. herself was woken too. when asked what he was doing (the peeps are on holiday so do not need to get up this early) he said “i can’t sleep through your snoring!” it seems herself has a bit of a cold so in spite of sleeping on her front like a puppy she is still managing to snore.

i had to muffle a little chortle...

23 October 2006


Originally uploaded by Joker the Lurcher.
we went over to grandma's today. herself has taken the week off as it is half term holidays so we all went. i always like going to grandma's as i get to see the girly dogs and play with all their toys. they have a new lobster which sqeaks rather fetchingly.

as we approached portsmouth my boy said "can we go to the pitch and putt?" pitch and putt is a sort of golf. i have never understood the point of golf. it seems you walk round a large field and now and again whack a small ball with a long stick. the main drawback is that you are not allwed to take your dog. whatever is the point to a walk without a dog?

anyway, my boy is chuffed to bits about going to play pitch and putt. "i love pitch and putt" he says, "you are allowed to say bollocks!" herself said this was not really the point of pitch and putt. "well daddy says it", says my boy. herself says "you might get thrown off the course by the lady in charge if you swear." "oh, no" says my boy, " you are allowed to swear in portsmouth".

herself then tried to explain that swearing was not such a great idea in case he offended someone, like small children. "oh they don't have children in portsmouth" says my boy " they are born as teenagers with fags hanging out of their mouths and funny caps". i don't know where he gets these ideas from.

the "bollocks" theme continued. as regular readers will know, my boy has a sitter. this is a nice lady who comes to visit so the peeps can go out. she doesn't actually sit on my boy but sits next to him which i suppose is almost as effective. she is from social services and every now and again another lady from social services comes along to see how things are going with the peeps and the sitter.

usually the peeps do a pretty good job of seeming like things are in control. they make a pot of tea and have a chat. today my boy decided to show the lady from social services his latest find on the internet. this is a website with loads of games you can play. the one he chose to share with the lady from social services is one involving a man called johnny vegas. a cartoon of mr vegas holding a pint of beer wobbles around the screen. with the mouse you have to control the beer to stop it spilling. if you are not too good at this, mr vegas spills his beer and shouts "bollocks!"

i think my boy made him spill the beer on purpose...

21 October 2006

measuring the gourd

measuring the gourd
Originally uploaded by Joker the Lurcher.
my boy has found a new way to torment the peeps in the mornings. he has taken up measuring a gourd. he does this at about 7.50am, just before his taxi arrives. i am reliably informed that the creature is in fact a squash, but my boy insists on calling it the gourd. he saw a film called life of brian some time ago where apparantly a gourd played one of the main characters and he fell in love with the word.

the whole gourd thing started a while ago when herself decided to start online grocery shopping. this was when himself was very poorly. himself normally does the shopping as herself is totally inept at it. for example, in some shops there are special offers where if you buy something you get a second one free. herself would come home and himself would say "where's the other one?" to which she would reply "we only need one". himself would explain that the other one was free but she had failed to grasp this basic bit of shopping lore. and when she goes to the supermarket there is a constant stream of phones calls. "where's the tuna?" "have we got any greek yoghurt?" "which sort of salsa does little man like?" "what sort of veggie burgers should i get?" himself gets steadily more irritable and starts to mutter.

but when he was really poorly herself had to get the grocery shopping sorted out. so she decided to get things online. as she was surfing the website looking for goodies, she noticed that you could buy a veg box. this contained a random selection of odd vegetables. there were two problems with this idea. firstly, by the time she came across the veg box she had already added a huge number of vegetables to her virtual basket. it did not occur to her to go back and remove these now there was also going to be a box full of them. second, himself has a special diet to keep down the levels of phosphate and potassium in his blood as his kidneys can't get rid of it. the special diet seems to involve unholy amounts of meat (not that i am grumbling as i get the leftovers) and being banned from most vegetables.

when the online shopping turned up there was what can only be described as a plague of vegetables. some were very odd. there was also a gourd. well, technically a squash but as i said above, known in this establishment as a gourd. the gourd sat in the kitchen watching proceedings for quite some time. meanwhile herself tried to make inroads on the vegetables.

after a couple of weeks the gourd's turn came. she roasted it in the oven with olive oil and garlic and whizzed it into a rather luscious soup. even my boy liked it. however, the next day another grocery order arrived with another veg box. in this box was the gourd's brother. herself learns very slowly.

the following morning my boy ran in carrying the new gourd. "i am sure this gourd has shrunk!" "its a different gourd" said herself, "we ate the other one yesterday". my boy was having none of this. because it was in the soup it didn't look like a gourd. instead he developed a theory that the fact that he was growing was making the gourd seem smaller.

i suppose this is a bit like the theory of relativity. this is a theory developed by a man with beefburger syndrome (told you they were clever folks) called einstein. basically as you grow, your relatives seem smaller. in fact the very old relatives are really getting smaller but i'm not sure if he worked that out.

in order to keep a check on the gourd my boy started to measure it. we are now onto our third gourd (i told you she learned slowly) and here you can see my boy is carefully recording its dimensions. and you can also see that, according to his measurements it is indeed shrinking. herself pointed out that he might be measuring it at a different point in its tapering physique but the young scientist was adamant that he was not.

in any event, the gourd's days are numbered. some friends of the peeps are coming to stay tonight. roast gourd is on the menu. watch this space...

19 October 2006

crumble day!

Originally uploaded by Joker the Lurcher.
at last! crumble day is over! the peeps have been in a state of high anxiety all week in case they forgot to get the ingredients. the recipe for the crumble has been in the middle of the table, right in the way, to remind himself to buy the apples and stuff.

yesterday himself came home with apples and blackberries and various other mysterious ingredients. my boy saw his chance to score a blackberry or two. "i think i should just make apple crumble" he said. himself did not find this amusing. my boy was persuaded that the best way of getting out of the kitchen in one piece was to drop this idea sharpish. the blackberries have been under an armed guard all night.

this morning herself as usual went in to wake my boy. my boy started up with the usual "i don't feel all that great today..." herself said that if he thought he was going to have the day off on crumble day he had another think coming. i think the words "carried in on a stretcher" may even have been used.

anyway, himelf laboriously weighed out all the stuff and put it into bags and pots while herself wrote my boy's name on the bottom of a dish. the peeps were mighty proud to be so organised. all the stuff was packed carefully into a bag. then herself remembered that she needed evidence of the whole business for my blog. so out came all the ingredients and the blackberries were asked to smile for a photo.

the day passed slowly. tensions were running high. would my boy pull it off or would the crumble catch fire? or worse, would he come home with an apple crumble having eaten the blackberries on the way to school in the taxi? or would he come home with someone else's crumble again?

4pm came and shortly after my boy arrived home beaming. he had won 5th place in the crumble competition. and lo, there were blackberries in it too! the peeps fell upon it like wolves and soon there was no evidence of the result of all the stress and strain except a pinkish dish. just as well herself had the foresight to take a picture of the blackberries this morning or my public would have thought i was making all this up...

18 October 2006

happy days

Originally uploaded by Joker the Lurcher.
herself came back in a cheerful mood today. she has managed to spend nearly all day taking pictures in work time and even for work purposes. this makes a change. she often stops on the way back from court to take the odd picture of an oil drum or a rusty pipe (don't ask me - i'm only a lurcher) but to spend enough time taking pictures that her camera battery goes flat, well, that's a great day as far as she is concerned.

it seems this morning's pictures were of grass. not just grass on its own. these pictures also have ruts in them. these are caused by people riding motorbikes all over the grass when they shouldn't. this causes problems for people trying to play football as they fall down the ruts. no doubt some of them break their ankles doing this although herself wasn't that specific.

the motorbikes also appear to have narrowly missed people walking their dogs. no mention of the dogs being narrowly missed, which is just typical. i know from my own experience that when you are concentrating on a particularly nice smell of old chip wrappers, or even, god forbid, lady dogs, the last thing you would notice would be a motorbike in your ear.

anyway, as well as the grass pictures, there are some of handcuffs. not altogether sure what sort of office herself works in. seems to me a quiet word in someone's ear ought to be enough to stop them eating too many biscuits. handcuffs seem a bit extreme. however my boy was mightily impressed. "cool!" as he said. not sure how cool it would be to have ones paws in them but hopefully now i have the muzzle and am prevented from committing felonies against deer i will not find out.

anyway later on she seems to have somehow managed to lock a policeman in a cell. and then take pictures of him. admittedly this is for a good cause as they are making a leaflet to explain autism and beefburger syndrome to police officers but even so. couldn't they just send them an e-mail or something?

17 October 2006


the proud architect
Originally uploaded by Joker the Lurcher.
one of the wonderful things about beefburger syndrome is that you do not give up. if you decide you are going to do something you will stick at it until you achieve it. this is a great thing. many of the world's most gifted people had beefburger syndrome. it meant that they did not say "oh to hell with this symphony, i'm off to play golf!"

however, for those who live around a beefburger person it can get a bit trying. take the house of cards idea. my boy decided he was going to build a house of cards. the idea came over him at breakfast time. i do not need to go over the morning thing for those folks who have been visiting a while. for those who haven't just look here and here. and maybe here. and indeed here.

halfway through the toast and marmite (or marmike as its known in our house) my boy starts trying to build the house of cards. herself, with more than her usual patience, suggested that this was maybe not the best time and that le corbusier probably finished his croissants first before starting on a ground-breaking architectural scheme. my boy was successfully peeled off the cards and apart from a couple more sneaky attempts, propelled out of the door at the correct time for his taxi.

but when he got home the building bug got him again and after many attempts he managed this rather fine maisonnette. i didn't think it complied with building regs so i did my best with a couple of well aimed wags of my tail to demolish it before any people moved in but he got me in an armlock and defeated me. if anyone else ruffled my hair like that i'd have something to say but i have a soft spot for my boy so i didn't hold it against him.

anyway here is the masterpeice. shortly afterwards it went the way of all modern architecture which was a blessed relief. but now he's working on a tower block.

he may be a genius in the building and design stakes but he sure is an absent-minded boffin in other bits of his life. in the mornings herself goes into his room to wake him up. while he is opening his eyes she has to hang around or he will be off like a light again so she busies herself picking stuff up off the floor. when my boy goes to bed he seems to dissolve out of his clothes, leaving them on the floor looking like the owner has evapourated and been abducted by aliens. so herself has to pull them all apart to put the clean ones back on the shelf and the grubby ones in the wash. my boy wears a pair of trousers, a polo shirt and a sweatshirt for school. however yesterday's clothes were different. somehow my boy had put one polo shirt on, forgotten he had done so and put another one over the top. he had then topped the whole ensemble off with the sweatshirt so by the time he had come into the kitchen for breakfast no-one could see the over-shirtedness.

it was not until herself disentangled it all this morning that it becamse clear that this was yet another devilish plan to keep the peeps chained to the washing machine by wearing all his clothes at once. maybe mozart's mother had the same problem with his doublets and hoses...

16 October 2006

mac sticking his tongue out

in case you didn't believe me, here is a picture of mac sticking his tongue out. i have no idea how she got my boy inside, he clearly would not fit through the slot. he seems to have suffered no ill effects so please don't report her to anyone...

uh oh

Originally uploaded by Joker the Lurcher.
now, dear readers, don't think i chose this picture. oh no. herself is responsible for this. i would not give one of these chappies house room. this is a cat called kitty. kitty shares a house with some good friends of the peeps called clive and liz who the peeps went to lunch with yesterday. yours truly was not invited. i assume this is because i might think kitty was on the menu. clive and liz also have a dog called foxy, who i am led to believe looks like a fox although i have yet to be introduced. foxy came from somewhere far away and has one leg shorter than the rest. if she were a boy dog this would be handy for watering plants but such an adaptation is wasted on her.

as well as the aforementioned creatures clive and liz also have two boys. my boy loves playing with them. even when he was much younger and had to be very closely supervised to prevent violent outbursts he was always quite happy playing with the older one. the younger one had not appeared at that stage.

this weekend has been quite a sociable one all round. my peeps have made friends with some people who live round the corner. they have a son and a daughter and my boy had a whale of a time playing with them. the daughter was particularly struck with my boys furry burping pineapple. this is really a dog toy but am i allowed near it? no way.

friday was a less successful day. himself managed to get yet another parking ticket. this time it was when he was on a first aid course. he somehow failed to notice that it was a resident parking bay. so herself has had to write another groveling "sorry but he has renal failure which makes him unable to understand parking regulations" letter to the parking folks. luckily she still has the previous one on the computer so it just need a bit of tweaking. and even more fortuitously this is a different town so they won't have a file on himself.

then himself got stuck in traffic so wasn't home in time for my boy getting back in his taxi from school. herself couldn't get hold of himself on the phone so got into a right old panic.

my boy's taxi driver is a lovely man and had found a nice hedge to park by where my boy could lean out of the car window and pick blackberries while they waited for the peeps. herself scooped up my boy and they arrived home very stressy and berating himself even before he had proudly produced his parking ticket.

it turns out the date was responsible for all this. it was friday 13th. which apparently is a bad date for parking tickets and general chaos. not sure how they explain the chaos the rest of the year...

14 October 2006

a hive of activity

this is a photo from a little while ago. herself has slowed up dramatically on her prolific adhd photography so i am having to resort to using pictures from the past. where is the artistic integrity in that? the whole point of a blog is up to the minute, cutting edge reporting. or so i hear...

adhd, for those listeners who don't have a dictionary handy, stands for attention deficit hyperactivity disorder. my boy has it, as well as the beefburger syndrome or whatever its called. it makes you wild, fast and impulsive. and three guesses where my boy got it from? yes, herself. she is totally off the scale. as a pup by all accounts she was worse, which doesn't even bear thinking about. regular visitors to my ramblings will know that she has the attention span of a gnat. she gives multi-tasking a whole new meaning. even her yoga is fast. its called ashtanga and involves doing the whole "downward dog, upward dog" thing at high speed. i have a hell of a job keeping up.

anyway, the slowing down in the photography has not meant a spell of sitting with her feet up. oh no. she has become a record producer. it seems that the cd i mentioned in my last missive is not going to be made in a factory somewhere. herself is planning to burn copies on mac. mac is a rather interesting chap who sits on top of her writing bureau. he plays tunes, makes funny noises and has pictures of everything you can imagine inside which he flashes across his screen. and if herself presses a button on the magic keyboard (which does not seem to be connected in any way to mac) the funny creature sticks out his tongue. this allows herself to place a cd on his tongue which he then swallows. how mad is that? he doesn't seem to like bones or steak or anything, just cds. and the occasional dvd when he's really hungry.

it would appear that mac can record music onto the cd and then regurgitate it. this allows the cd to be played by other folks. the cds don't seem too gunky either. so herself is planning to make copies of the cd to sell.

and that's not all. she is also planning to become a film magnate. herself and a friend of hers who has a wild child are going to make a film about what its like to have autism. they are going to interview wild children and parents of same and put it all together onto a dvd. my boy is going to be the cameraman and the wild girl is going to do the interviewing. my boy will edit the film on the ever resourceful mac with a bit of help from herself.

but will it make us rich? am i going to be able to retire and put my paws up? not on your nelly. she is going to give all the money from all this industry to the autistic folks. so i am still going to have to slave away working my paws to the bone to earn a crust. so keep visiting, dear readers. i only do it for my public...

12 October 2006

the music business

no different
Originally uploaded by Joker the Lurcher.
herself has finally gone off the rails this time!

her latest money-making plan to raise money for the autistic folks and their families involves producing cds to sell. but not just producing the cds. there is also the small matter of the cd cover. and a poster. and a web page on the website that she looks after. no doubt there will be t-shirts.

oops. i really shouldn't have said that. she'll be making me wear one.
still, its a lovely song.

by the way, you may have noticed she is getting really into putting links into my blog. it is because she has finally discovered how to do the code. bless....

11 October 2006

flashing light

it appears that you can now add a video to your blog. so i am just trying this out to see if it works. this video is of my boy playing with a solar light in the garden. i make a short guest appearance but for some reason my assistance was not required...

10 October 2006

an end to dust

frogz in the bedroom
Originally uploaded by Joker the Lurcher.
it appears that herself has managed to purchase a new hoover. this can only be good news for those of us who live near the floor. i know a lot of what blows around the floor emanates from my furry coat but a chap can't help being furry. the peeps leave clothes all over the floor so why shouldn't a hound leave a bit of fur - but it does get in the old eyes on a windy day.the hoover purchasing trip came about because of a car crash this morning which meant herself had to divert past sainsbury's on the way to work. sainsbury's are supposed to sell groceries but seem also to sell hoovers these days.

here is a picture of the old hoover in its place under the bed. you may notice one of the green chappies from the garden is perched upon the pipe. in the summer we have many visitors of all shapes and sizes, quite a few of whom come into the house. there are some particularly amazing critturs called maybugs who have huge eyebrows. this little green chap had to be chased round the bedroom by herself and my boy before finally being cornered and gently replaced by the pond. himself, needless to say, snored through the whole adventure.

i would have offered to help but the green chappies are really not at all tasty...

09 October 2006

old friends

had a nice weekend with the peeps. some old friends came to stay. they are called john and sarah and they don't have a house. they live in a van. a very posh van admittedly but still a van. the plan is they will travel round europe and eventually find a place to live.

herself is trying to persuade them that the place to live should be near an airport that easyjet fly to. easyjet have nice orange planes that my boy likes. i cannot think why herself has this plan about where john and sarah should live. can't be anything to do with the peeps wanting to fly over to stay with them somewhere warm, i suppose?

yours truly won't be able to go as easyjet seem extremely prejudiced against lurchers so i always end up having to go to the girlies in the kennels whenever the peeps go to warmer climes. ho hum.

anyway, as well as vast amounts of wine being drunk and food being guzzled we managed a little walk or two. here is my boy doing his famous one-legged balancing thing on a tree trunk on one of the walks. he does this all over the place so herself can photograph him. i don't see what the fuss is about. i am forever balancing on one leg while watering various plants and no-one takes picture of me. humph!

06 October 2006


ashley's apple crumble
Originally uploaded by Joker the Lurcher.
my boy had cookery at school yesterday. its not called cookery though - its called design and technology. not sure how much design goes into my boy's cooking but there you are...

i do vaguely recall some shenanigans about ingredients the other morning. my boy goes to school in a taxi now. this is since himself got so poorly. the taxi arrives at 8am. at about 7.45am, my boy says to herself "by the way, i need ingredients for apple crumble today". as regular readers will know, mornings in our house are not the most restful times. in order to get everyone out of the house on time without anyone ending up in tears things have to be run like a military operation. there is not a lot of time spare for popping down to the shop to buy cooking apples. so herself asks why my boy has left it until just before going to school to mention this. it also seems that there was nothing in his planner to say he needed these ingredients. the planner is a little blue book where things are written down to help my boy keep them in his sieve-like memory. somewhere in the middle of all this she says "i don't think they realise how much strain this puts on families".

anyway, my boy went off without his ingredients on the basis that he must have imagined the apple crumble thing. when he got home it transpired that the note about the ingredients had been put in the wrong date in the planner. in fact it was on 25 december. why my boy would be making apple crumble on christmas day i don't know. it seems the whole class had suffered the same mistake so no-one had ingredients.

this all got forgotten and the subject of apple crumble drifted out of everyone's consciousness. until yesterday when it transpired they were going to have another attempt. at about 7.45am my boy pipes up "we're making apple crumble today". whereupon there is a re-run of the "its not in your planner" conversation. needless to say no apples anywhere in the house.

but it appears yesterday was indeed the day for apple crumble. and my boy was the only kid with no ingredients. when the teacher asked him why he didn't have them, he said "my family is very busy and they forget things" to which the teacher said "these other people have busy families and they managed to remember their ingredients". rather than keep his head down and grovel, my boy then said "you don't realise the strain all this puts on families" and compounds things by telling the teacher this is what herself had said. so the teacher says "well if your mum thinks that she should write me a letter about it".

when my boy relates all this there are howls of dismay from himself and herself. and then they realise that my boy has brought home his mate ashley's apple crumble as well as his own. at least he hadn't wolfed it down as quickly as he ate his own one....

04 October 2006


Originally uploaded by Joker the Lurcher.
herself seems a bit low today. nothing major but she was a bit flat compared to her normal self. she's been working at home which she does a couple of times a week if she can. she says she gets more done than in the office. if today's output is anything to go by she must do hardly anything in the office. she's been faffing about shuffling bits of paper and moving files around without any appreciable effect.

at least she has managed to re-constitute her electronic diary. somehow, as part of the 'getting organised' plan, she managed to delete all her appointments, including court hearings. this could be pretty catastrophic. judges don't take it too kindly if the lawyer doesn't turn up. luckily some of her colleagues have the same appointments so she thinks she has found everything. its all a bit scary though. she had her first court hearing in a little while yesterday and got in a right old stew.

my boy has managed to lose his p.e. kit. p.e. is something they do at school which involves a lot of running around. not sure why my boy should have to put on special clothes to run around. at home he runs around quite happily in ordinary clothes. it transpires that he has taken his p.e. kit out of the rather fine brightly coloured bag that herself made for him, which has his name on in large letters so you couldn't miss it, and has put it into a nondescript dark blue bag which doesn't have his name on and so has got lost.

when cross-examined about this tomfoolery he said it was because he wanted his bag to "blend in". well, it has obviously blended in so well it has totally vanished.

herself explained to my boy that we are not a blending in sort of family. not sure how he has avoided noticing this. there is not a single member of this household, yours truly included, who could even slightly be said to blend in. himself has a woolly beard and varies between looking like a pirate and a biblical character depending on how recently it has been cut. herself is, well, herself. and yours truly has rather distinctive mis-matched eyes and a fine set of whiskers.

as for my boy, suffice to say that you are not going to be inconspicuous if you go round at high speed making funny noises. these noises have ranged over the years from electrical items such as power tools and tumble dryers, through lorries, to the current favourite of machine guns, none of which is very conducive to blending in.

anyway, my boy saw the error of his ways and has decided to put his p.e. kit back in its correct bag. he just has to find it first...

03 October 2006

autumn too

Originally uploaded by Joker the Lurcher.
another sign of autumn is the chimney sweep's visit. this year we have been eagerly awaiting him as we had a nest of jackdaws in the chimney this summer and obviously needed to make sure the chimney wasn't still full of sticks before lighting the wood-burning stove. they were quite a noisy bunch but rather entertaining. it turns out they were in the other pot anyway so they could have stayed for the winter but i think they had other dogs to visit.

i love it when the chimney sweep comes. he spreads out a big plastic mat and then pulls wonderful things out of a bag. my favourite of these things is a long pole with a brush on the end. it smells just fabulous and he lets me sniff it for as long as i like. as he sits on the floor to get a good angle with the brush i get to lick his ears and give him the once over. luckily he has a dog himself so he understands if i get a bit fruity. its just that he smells so sooty...

talking of interesting smells, herself came home yesterday and dived straight into a hot bath. seems she had been re-arranging the office and got very hot in the attempt. herself works in an office with quite a few other people. it is a different one to the one where i used to go to work with her. the new office is by all accounts very hot and stuffy and part of the re-arranging idea was to be able to open the window without climbing across the desk and risking diving out head first. herself is not the most sylph-like person so the sight of her clambering across a desk must give her colleagues a chortle. anyway it seems she can now get fresh air much more safely.

keeping herself cool is important as the meds she is on to stop her crying all the time make her quite hot and bothered. she says she will burst into flames when she hits the menopause. not sure what the menopause is. hope it doesn't mean she can't have anything to do with men any more. not only is himself a man, but my boy is fast turning into one and there is of course yours truly as well. i wonder if we will have to decamp to the garden shed...

01 October 2006


Originally uploaded by Joker the Lurcher.
its official, dear reader. autumn has arrived. we know this because himself has discarded his shorts (which he wears from early spring) and has gone back to his longs.

i think its a kind of "winter coat / summer coat" thing. i just cast hair all over the house and scratch compulsively for a couple of weeks but the peeps have to go to the trouble of actually changing their outer layer altogether. whole lot of fuss if you ask me...