Tuesday, 5 April 2011

Even I Have To Admit They're Cute

Ever since my seven or eight year old self was chased on my bike by a big, black, one eyed greyhound leaving me mentally scarred for life, I have not been a big fan of dogs. My brother was taking me on a fishing trip and failed to mention that the notorious beast dwelt en route to the pond until about ten seconds before it came hurtling out of its driveway at ninety miles an hour leaving my little legs spinning and my heart pounding as I attempted to outrun it. Being chased by a dog was bad enough but being chased by a greyhound - not exactly known for their lack of pace - was horrendous. It seemed like an eternity before the animal gave up on its sport and left me breathless and sobbing into my maggots.An Alsatian that I had passed on the way to Sunday school every week without prior incident put its paws on my shoulders and barked in my face a couple of days after the encounter with the hound and it was as if a message had gone out on the doggie jungle drums that I was easy pickings. From that day onwards I have shied away from the animals but they always seem to sense my fear and distrust of them. However, on Friday we visited old friends in Llangollen to celebrate a promotion and they introduced us to the new additions to their "family". They have owned two King Charles Cavalier Spaniels for years but when they were left with just Benny after the demise of Bobby they went for a replacement but were torn between these two and ended up with both so now it's Benny, Jack and Jem or as my friend Dave refers to them Benny and the Jets. And even I have to admit that they are extremely cute.

We got to see "Source Code" yesterday after the man from John Lewis finally sorted the curtains. Marion thought it was good but not as good as she expected from all the critical acclaim. I thought it was great. Why? Well it is pacey, and original, with a small but excellent cast who all played their parts to perfection. Jake Gyllenhaal is a very likable leading man and his love interest Michelle Monaghan is charismatic without being over glamorous whilst the officer who controls Gyllenhaal, Vera Farmiga, is also very human. And I think that this is what makes the film a success as the story is an extremely far fetched thriller about a soldier who goes on a mission into the body of a man on a train who is facing imminent death in an attempt to discover who planted the bomb that is going to kill him. If you can't connect with the characters in an outlandish plot like that, the film is doomed. But because you can connect it is easy to go along with what is happening on screen and become immersed in the action. Gyllenhaal is repeatedly sent back to the train to complete his mission and it is a little like "Groundhog Day" with explosions. It's very well thought through and it was good to watch a film that has a very good ending that ties the whole thing up perfectly. I'm with the critics on this one.

When you are retired you get a bit more time to get in control of you bank account and what you are spending your money on. I realised today that I am spending £9 a month on ESPN and have been doing so since September 2009 - so that's about £180. Since I have had it I reckon that I've watched about four football matches which, at £45 per match makes it a bit of a waste of money so I cancelled it. I thought that I would cancel Sky Sports at the same time but I can't as you can't have Sky 3D without the full sports and movie package.

When I wrote about AV on here yesterday and mentioned voting in other "important" matters like X Factor a friend posted a tweet outraged that I should consider X Factor important. Although my tongue was firmly in my cheek when describing it thus, it is a sad fact that it is likely that fewer people will vote on AV than phoned in for the X factor final and, as Midge Benn joked in his slot on Friday's "The Now Show" on Radio 4 with a 15% turn out expected the only certain result is that the electorate don't give a toss.

I started today with some cute dogs. I'll finish with yet another cute baby. And no the recent rash of baby videos have nothing to do with our impending grandparenthood - they are just some of the funniest I've found recently. This one came via @glinner on Twitter.