Secret Scotland

If it's secret, and in Scotland…

The JOY of reg

I’ve no idea why, but even though I know better I’m always surprised at how old the Aston Martin body shape is.

I don’t mean old as in ‘ancient’, more that when I check an actual model and find it is not something from 3 or 4 years ago at most, it just surprises me.

It happened recently (again!) when I checked the detail behind this recent catch, and it turned out to be a 2004 Aston Martin DB9 Auto.

13 years old and it looks like it just rolled out of the showroom… as this year’s model.

I’ve got a DBS V12 living along the road at the moment, it may be 5 years newer, from 2009, but this older one looks little better.

Aston Martin DB9 Auto 2004

Aston Martin DB9 Auto 2004

March 18, 2017 Posted by | Civilian, photography, Transport, Uncategorized | , | Leave a comment

Life… It never rains but it pours

It’s one minute past midnight on 16 March 2017.

While I was already less than happy (since I couldn’t do anything about yesterday’s unavoidable life milestone), I thought I might at least be spared any other mishaps on an already depressing day – I should have known better. Just for good measure I was put firmly in my place by fate, and was ill too.

Making the best of a bad lot, it should only last a day and I should be able to look forward to being back to my normal miserable self tomorrow.

As it was, this probably sums up the day:

It just gets better

It just gets better


Far far away…

In the depths of Hell…

I was still making atl east one reader happy:

Grumpy Cat



March 16, 2017 Posted by | Uncategorized | | Leave a comment

My life is over

It’s one minute past midnight on 15 March 2017.

While I don’t do personal details and stuff online, it’s true to say that today does actually mark a milestone that falls under the general heading of ‘My life is over‘, and this is how I’ll spend my day today:

My life is over

My life is over


Far far away…

In the depths of Hell…

I made at least one reader happy:

Grumpy Cat


March 15, 2017 Posted by | Uncategorized | | Leave a comment

Happy Pi Day

I almost forgot/missed it again!

I don’t know why, and I both know and think it is silly, but for some reason I’ve come to LIKE the existence of Pi Day.

You’ll always find some amazing pie pics shown online, baked to mark the the day, but this seemed…

Pi Day

March 14, 2017 Posted by | Uncategorized | , | Leave a comment

The Prisoner airing on Freeview Ch61 ‘True Entertainment’ from 21:00 Mon 13 Mar 2017

True Entertainment
I spotted a slightly surprising show due to be aired on Freeview Channel 61.

‘True Entertainment’ is about start showing The Prisoner as of Monday 13 March 2017 at 21:00.

This replaces the current run of The Persuaders and will follow the same format of two episodes per evening.

While that will burn through the series in less than two weeks, The Persuaders was only 24 eps, and has been repeating for the past few weeks.

I don’t have the ability to look far enough forward to see if The Prisoner will also be looped for a while.

While I have a few version on various media collected over the years, and could watch as I wished, I never do, and rather like the ‘old-fashioned’ discipline of having to ‘catch’ a programme when it is on. That said, I seldom watch anything live now (or at all to be honest) but delay, so I can wipe out the poxy adverts.

Brings back memories too.

In the Village

In the Village

I said I was surprised, and that’s because we passed the 50th anniversary of the series not that long ago, yet not one broadcaster saw fit to mention it, or run the series to mark the event.

March 12, 2017 Posted by | Uncategorized | , | Leave a comment

Shocking gun find dug up in my garden – and an old advert found too

I don’t (daren’t) write about guns any more – in Scotland, anything that might attract attention to an interest in guns is likely to end with the ‘gift’ of a mandatory 5 year jail sentence.

While the criminal classes can freely wander around with a gun stuffed down their trousers, beware if you are an old granny that finds her deceased partners rusty old wartime service revolver or similar lying forgotten somewhere in their house. Mention it, or let it be found for some other reason, and her feet will generally not touch the ground as she is rushed into the nearest prison, followed by a media shaming campaign to get her released.

Don’t believe me?

Try looking the scenario up online.

I thought I was going to have to order a false passport and identity last year, and make a run for it abroad, after I dug up some gun parts in back garden. Worse still, it was a machine gun, which would really upset some people…

Plastic BB gun

Plastic BB gun

It’s taken a while to positively identify this, but I was looking through some old advert collections and… there was the same gun, complete!

There was no info about the ad, so I have to guess it (and the toy) date from the 1960s, but may have been produced for some years, and originate in the 1950s.

Sad to say, this was the ONLY part I found, but it cleaned up well, considering it must have been buried there for almost 50 years.

Still, it was a nice change to find something identifiable – usually all I get is tiny fragments not worth bothering about.

Here’s the advert:

Plastic BB gun old advert

Plastic BB gun old advert

February 19, 2017 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , | Leave a comment

Daily Mail is finally thrown out of Wikipedia

You need to be careful when referring to material you use for research, or to justify ‘facts’ you present regarding subjects you may be writing about.

While many people do it, it’s actually wrong to quote Wikipedia, NOT because it may be wrong or unreliable, but because you should look at the references given there, check them, and cite THEM as the source. Most people don’t know how to use the material properly, but if you happen to come up against someone who does, then the chances are they will laugh, or mock you, for using Wikipedia.

While it may be procedurally correct, it’s a little unfair on Wikipedia, since the problem really lies with the user, not the source.

The Daily Mail’s approach to veracity has never been notable for its effectiveness, and Wikipedia has had enough:

Wikipedia editors have voted to ban the Daily Mail as a source for the website in all but exceptional circumstances after deeming the news group “generally unreliable”.

The move is highly unusual for the online encyclopaedia, which rarely puts in place a blanket ban on publications and which still allows links to sources such as Kremlin backed news organisation Russia Today, and Fox News, both of which have raised concern among editors.

The editors described the arguments for a ban as “centred on the Daily Mail’s reputation for poor fact checking, sensationalism and flat-out fabrication”.

The Wikimedia Foundation, which runs Wikipedia but does not control its editing processes, said in a statement that volunteer editors on English Wikipedia had discussed the reliability of the Mail since at least early 2015.

It said: “Based on the requests for comments section [on the reliable sources noticeboard], volunteer editors on English Wikipedia have come to a consensus that the Daily Mail is ‘generally unreliable and its use as a reference is to be generally prohibited, especially when other more reliable sources exist’.

Wikipedia bans Daily Mail as ‘unreliable’ source. The Guardian.

The Daily Mail gave a response to the ban, almost as good and as laughable as one of its stories!

Like someone who lies THEN insists they are NOW telling the truth, they just don’t understand, or “Get it”.

Interestingly, the date given as “at east early 2015” by WP matches our own decision to devote a thread in our Forum to “The DM hit thread” beginning May 2015.

Like Wikipedia, we had spent the previous years laughing at various DM writers trying to… do something. This was spotted in November 2016, originally from Private Eye if comments on it are accurate:

Daily Mail fake (Private Eye?)

Daily Mail fake (Private Eye?)

My own take on the Daily Mail (coincidentally also from November 2016) was this – inspired by an episode entitled ‘Night of the Kill’, from a series called ‘One Step Beyond’. This was an American anthology series that portrayed events that defied ‘logical’ explanations (which the DM would probably report as ‘facts’ today).

Here we see some early footage of the Daily Mail’s founders as they hone their skills and perfect the practice of…

“Shoot first and… Questions? We ain’t bothered with no stinkin’ questions – just shoot!”

‘Creature’ rescues a lost kid, feeds him, and puts in a place of safety where animals cannot reach.

Parent’s response…

Round up the neighbours, make sure everybody has a gun, and the hunt is on for the kid’s 15-foot friend.

“It came towards us – couldn’t believe what we saw – everybody started shooting.”

“HIDEOUS! Whatever it is… it’s GOT TO BE KILLED!”

Kid: “He didn’t hurt anybody!”

Mom: “You’ll understand when you grow up… that certain things HAVE to be done… well, your friend for instance… he’s just too dangerous to be running loose.”

And as we know from even the sensible news, the world is full of people who still function on the same logic…



We’re not really that far on from the days of lynch mobs – just better at covering it up, denying, ignoring it, or launching a smokescreen to divert attention.

February 10, 2017 Posted by | Uncategorized | , | Leave a comment

Project Yuk is back – 2016 result

Project Yuk is back is back after a lapse in attention, better described as me forgetting to note the results for the past couple of years.

It started back in 2012: Where does the muck come from? – or ‘The sure bet’

I managed to remember in 2013: Project Yuk – 2013

Somehow, although the ‘collection’ for 2014 and 2015 was recorded, the weights (which were really the more relevant metric) went astray before the posts were made, and so the posts were never made.

recalling the two results:

2012 was 2,129 g (5.58 lb),

2013 was 2,542 g (5.60 lb).

Qualitatively at least, those two years seemed to collect as much as the first two, at least to the Mk I eyeball:


Project Yuk 2014

Project Yuk 2014

Then 2015:

Yuk 2015

Yuk 2015

As per the first post for 2012, I remain as mystified as I was then regarding the source of all this ‘goodness’.

I don’t have herds of people flocking through my home, kids, or even pets now, yet it continues to collect.

I’ve given up the regular vacuuming too, simply on the basis of it being a waste of electricity.

I don’t even usually wear outdoor shoes indoors, and keep separate shoes/boots for working outside, so never walk mud or earth inside now.


Back on track, and the numbers are in for 2016…

1,050 g (2.31 lbs)

Half as much as found in the previous years (with results), but also for a year when there was considerably less vacuuming carried out AND outdoor shoes being largely kept outside – so, not completely conclusive since we have 2 variables.

Well, here are the pics, still looks ridiculous for a house with virtually no through traffic:

Project Yuk 2016 a

Project Yuk 2016 a

Still never found anything ‘lost’ in this lot during the year:

Project Yuk 2016 b

Project Yuk 2016 b

Oh well, roll on 2017.

January 17, 2017 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , | Leave a comment

Can’t let a day for cats pass


It’s that time of year again:

National Cat Day

National Cat Day

October 29, 2016 Posted by | Uncategorized | , | Leave a comment

International Cat Day

International Cat Day…

No more need be said 🙂


August 8, 2016 Posted by | Uncategorized | | Leave a comment

Censored and blocked by New Scientist for asking for an explanation

e92TpMR9Be careful what you say around New Scientist – they clearly believe in censorship of anything they don’t like.

I recently (as in last week) got fed up seeing them repeat the same posts a few hours after they tweeted about an article being published. At first I thought they were updating the material, but then I checked, and found they were simply repeating or duplicating the tweet made 5-12 hours earlier. Sometimes more than once.

I tweeted a question asking why they were doing this, but never received the courtesy of a reply – or even ‘Sod Off!’

I then posted the same question, and the time since the original tweet was first seen, whenever I spotted a duplicate.

When I didn’t get a reply, I made my questions more direct, but never abusive.

Since this morning, I’ve seen no new tweets from the venerable New Scientist, and when I checked my Twitter account – found I was minus one account I had been following. You guessed it… NO New Scientist in the list any more, and a check shows I have been blocked and barred from seeing any of their tweets.

Customer service at it best.

Never the courtesy of even a single reply, or even just acknowledgement.

Just thrown out unilaterally.

I might add I complained to The Telegraph a few weeks back, when its @TelegraphWW2 Twitter account started spewing out current news (which I’m not interested in) instead of the promised archival material from World War II.

I emailed their digital support, and got an explanation that the WW2 account had developed a problem they could not fix.

After a day or so, they stopped tweeting current news via the account – sadly, no WW2 material has appeared either.

I guess they know how to treat their ‘customers’.


June 7, 2016 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , | 1 Comment

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