Archive for April 2010
This letter has it all: hysteria, self pity, physical insults, human insecurity, a touching element of forgiveness, and excessive exclamation marks!!!
If you know the malicious mini driver in question, or indeed if you are her, please get in touch.
Romford Recorder, 26 March 2010 (full letter):
Road rage ordeal for driver
I HAVE just arrived home having been a victim of a road rage incident. A young woman driving a mini thought that I was racing her at the YMCA lights in Romford. She drove her car in front of mine and got out and started verbally abusing me! She was very aggressive and very personal!
Her main issues seemed to be that I had no right to be racing with her, to be on the road in my car or to exist in my physical frame and at my age! The irony was that I wasn’t racing her in the first place – I drive a Picasso diesel people carrier!! Not a car you would choose to race in really! [...]
I just wanted to question what right this person had to assume that she was better than someone older (she suggested I was 60 – I am in fact much older than that, so am feeling flattered on this front), fatter (only marginally larger than her) and driving a Picasso (hey, no excuse for this one!!).
She was not a particularly physically attractive girl, having a skin problem, really bad hair and being overweight – but I did not feel that I wanted to hurt her by being mutually aggressive.
I am left feeling confused and hurt – I wonder if she would accept someone acting in this way to her mother? This person needs to learn that she will not always remain as she is (I used to model professionally under my maiden name and did not remain the same!!) – and nor should she – life is about growing up, maturing, gaining experience and realising what is important in life.
I would love if this letter gets printed and the lady reads it and recognises herself – perhaps she will also consider her actions. At the time, I was torn between being so upset and anxious and wanting to get out and give her some back.
I am proud that I held it together and did not retaliate as I believe that I came out the better person – she may not think this now, but I hope she looks back on this behaviour and is ashamed. I did take her number plate and was being followed by a neighbour who has said he will be a witness – but I have no desire to get the lady into trouble with the police for what I hope was just a bad day.
I do believe in everyone getting a chance as we all make mistakes!
NAME AND ADDRESS SUPPLIED
All in all, a real lesson in life.
It’s always wonderful when regional newspapers are able to avoid publishing multiple empty pages on slow news days by instead publishing drawings by demented members of the public.
UFOs, sometimes helpfully identified as ‘unidentified flying objects’, are, of course, a source of boundless intrigue. Their very nature means they invariably throw up questions rather than answers. It’s time to clear up some of those questions.
Nottingham Evening Post, 18 February 2010 (story):
Was this Notts UFO an alien spacecraft?
COULD sketches of a mysterious object which appeared in the sky over Notts be of an alien spaceship?
No, the first one is a sketch, and the second one looks like nothing more than a botched Photoshop creation. Next.
Manchester Evening News, 18 February 2010 (story):
Was this really a UFO over Knutsford?
This triangle-shaped craft was allegedly spotted over the skies of Cheshire.
The picture was drawn by an eyewitness who claimed to see the unusual object hovering over Knutsford.
No, they didn’t see it. They simply drew it. Full marks for the pylon though.
Reading Post, 5 October 2009 (story):
Are these drawings UFOs?
A Caversham family has drawn these vivid diagrams after spotting ‘extra-terrestrial objects’.
The UFOs were seen by a mum, who wishes to remain anonymous, and her family as they visited a fair off Richfield Avenue.
No… not UFOs on this occasion, they’re still just drawings. In fact, they look like drawings of items found on a beach. Soz.
The family-of-four noticed the ‘alien’ objects above them on Saturday, August 15, between 8.30pm and 9pm.
She added: “We looked up expecting to see a plane, instead we saw a huge round orange light. Within a few seconds the light went out and we could all see a dark grey disc, rotating as it moved.
“It was flying just below the clouds coming from the direction of London/Heathrow travelling on a straight path, heading in the direction of Nettlebed.
“It travelled at the speed of a plane, maybe slower.”
It’s (a) an object in the sky, (b) travelling from the direction of Heathrow airport, (c) at the speed of a plane… whatever could it be?
“We were shocked to see these huge dark grey discs overhead where we usually see passenger jets.”
When the family returned to their Henley Road home they each drew what they saw.
But this is not the first time the mum-of-two has seen spooky space objects over Reading.
In September, last year, she was taking photos of hot air balloons from a window of her house when she saw “something in the sky” that resembled a UFO.
Funnily enough, I also once saw something that resembled an unidentified object. I didn’t identify what it resembled, obviously, because it was unidentified. But it definitely resembled an unidentified object; I’m certain of that.
There’s only one way the newspapers can settle all of this, once and for all. And thankfully the Bracknell Forest Standard doesn’t shy away from the big questions on its website.
Is it any wonder this country is heading for a hung Parliament?
Police are investigating but, much like an over-adventurous puppy, this one could run and run.
Salisbury Journal, 24 April 2o10 (story):
Dog injures nose
POLICE in Ringwood are investigating the circumstances surrounding an injury to a dog’s nose.
A woman was walking her dog and puppy, when her puppy ran off.
Her dog ran after the puppy but collided with a male dog walker and his dog.
The woman’s dog received an injury to his nose.
And that’s it. Thank you to Tim Brook and Gez Daring.
At first glance, it could have been just any old protest at plans to close a local primary school. But then the affected children publicly unburdened their souls through deeply moving verse. The Staines News was first on the scene.
Staines News, 18 February 2010 (story):
Pupils write poems to save Shortwood School
DISHEARTENED school children have visited the Mayor of Spelthorne to read poems to try and stop the closure of their school.
Children aged between five and seven visited Caroline Spencer in her offices at Spelthorne Council, in Knowle Green, on Wednesday, and read stories and poems about the possible closure of Shortwood Infant School, in Stanwell New Road, Staines.
Just imagine having to stare these children in the face when they’ve finished reading their poems and tell them their school is still getting bulldozed to make way for an Aldi.
Although Mrs Spencer had to remain non-political due to her post, she said ‘it was lovely to meet the children and I had great fun hearing their works.’
One of the poems was written by six-year-old Georgina Clark, which said: “I am at the end of my Shortwood years, but the council (Surrey) have brought me to tears.”
Mrs Buckingham’s daughter Carys, also read a poem, which said: “The teachers are so great, but don’t forget our mates.”
Mrs Buckingham said the children were competing to write the best poem, and said that kind of competition is what makes the school worth keeping open.
Despite the fact there’s always a good story in emotional blackmail like this, the report disgracefully fails to quote any more extracts from the children’s poetry. There will have surely been further tear-jerking nuggets of youthful resentment left unreported:
“We may be practically toddlers, but even we know this is cobblers.”
“If I end up unable to spell, I hope you’ll burn in hell.”
“When Shortwood gets the axe, where do you expect us to play Kissy Cats?”
“It’s not just the council (Surrey) we hate, but in fact decades of flawed national education policy and the increasing reliance upon market forces in the delivery of schooling, mate.”
Although British democracy is clearly in a poor state, the Reading Evening Post does its damnedest to buck the trend and genuinely listens to the voice of its readership. This is achieved via a succession of unnerving online polls on the big issues of the day.
We’ve already seen the paper ballot its readership about its favourite stretch of tarmac, but it hasn’t stopped there:
This one demonstrates the pitfalls of including a ‘none of the above’ option…
And now that we’ve settled that, which religious leader do you second most admire…?
Jesus seems to be popping up everywhere these days; he gets where water doesn’t.
Plymouth Herald, 5 April 2010 (story):
Family says ‘face of Jesus’ appeared in Mum’s gum
A FAMILY have told of their wonder at finding ‘Jesus staring at us’ from a piece of chewing gum on Good Friday.
Nelly Noden had been chewing her gum but left it on the mantelpiece while she ate some crisps.
When she returned, the gum had turned into an image she believes resembles Christ.
“The second I put my eye on it, I could see it,” said the mother-of-two, from Beacon Park.
“I’d just got back from going the shops to buy a few things to eat when, as usual, I put my gum on the mantelpiece to have some Pringles,” she said.
“I went to pick it up again and Jesus was just there, staring at me.
“We couldn’t believe it – especially as it was Good Friday.”
I suppose it’s reasonable that, if anyone was likely to be chosen for a little divine intervention, it would be someone with a ritual of sticking their gum to a mantelpiece in order to eat Pringles.
But does it really look like Jesus? You be the judge:
Jesus Christ can also be found on the underside of school classroom desks up and down the land. Typical – always the last place you bloody look…
Daughter Charni, 16, excitedly called The Herald to relate the story.
She said: “We can’t believe how much it looks like Jesus; we’ve been telling everyone about it.”
Nelly said: “Me and my daughters were jumping around the room.”
The family say they are not religious, but thought it was special that it happened at Easter time, and also on the day before Nelly’s birthday. She said: “It was a real moment.”
The Nodens say they have kept the piece of gum as a memento.
Stop the world – I want to get off.
Straighten those lips, slacken that jaw and kill those eyes to a vacant stare for the sixth extravaganza of Teesside’s great and good newsfolk.
Vandals hack stained glass at Redcar church
Fury at rise in Middlesbrough allotment fees
Guisborough Town Football Club minibus destroyed
Nothing a lick of paint won’t sort.
Dad’s apology after fire threat in Teesside JobCentre
What do you do when you have ‘no intention’ of setting fire to yourself in the Job Centre? Douse yourself with a bottle of turpentine, of course.
Evening Gazette, 16 December 2009 (story):
A DISTRESSED dad has today apologised after months of frustration led to him threatening to set himself alight in a Teesside JobCentre. [...]
“I feel guilty over what I have done,” Brian told the Gazette.
“Some of the lasses in there must have been frightened. I shouldn’t have done what I did. I feel really ashamed. I can honestly say I had no intention of setting fire to myself and had no intention of damaging anything.” [...]
Brian said: “I remember going in my pocket and I pulled the bottle out.
“I poured the stuff over me then sat on a chair. I told them to get everybody out of the building and then the police turned up.”
He’s right – some of the lasses must have been frightened. None of the lads, though, because they’re bloody blokes.
Pupils in protest over Stockton school merger plan
Gazette Faces under there, deffo.
Guisborough and Redcar speed signs anger drivers
Gazette Scarf > Gazette Face.
Widow’s home ransacked on day of husband’s funeral
Outcry over bid to re-open notorious Easterside pub
Gunman terror at Middlesbrough social club
Health and safety ban on Middlesbrough gran’s knitted hospital fundraising dolls
It’s bloody political-correctness-health-and-safety-immigration-swine-flu gone mad.
Evening Gazette, 30 July 2009 (story):
A KNITTING nana has been left devastated after her local hospital banned the sale of her handmade dolls for health and safety reasons.
Dorothy Wedlake, 80, has been knitting dolls for the James Cook University Hospital in Middlesbrough since the death of her sister-in-law back in 1990.
Dorothy, of Maldon Road, Middlesbrough, said: “I’ve been knitting the little dolls for nearly 20 years and they’ve sold like hot cakes.”
Sold like hot cakes? No wonder they’re a health and safety risk if she’s telling people they’re edible. Get Trading Standards on the case.
The most popular are her Superman figures, but she also makes crinoline dolls, a favourite with little girls. “It’s a smack in the face,” said Dorothy…
Smack in the face? That’s dangerous.
“It makes me very frustrated that I can’t explain it all to someone face-to-face. My dolls have no eyes to fall out and choke a child. There’s no wires to cut a child. And no paint or dye to poison a child.”
Is she expecting praise for this?
“If these dolls are a danger to a child, then how many have I killed over the last 20 years?”
You tell us, Dot: just how many children have you killed over the last 20 years?
Link: Gazette Faces catalogue
In the most fiercely exciting development in national entertainment since the cessation of the most recent Chris Moyles Radio 1 Roadshow, Gazette Faces will soon be going on tour. Please continue to send your Gazette Faces from newspapers around Britain to the address at the top right corner of the page.
Q. What do you get when you cross Remembrance Sunday, littering yobs and an empty double decker bus?
A. An idle and wasteful society, obviously.
Market Rasen Mail, 18 November 2009:
It’s going down the pan
EDITOR – On the morning of Remembrance Sunday I witnessed two classic examples of our idle and wasteful society – a council employee having to pick up empty and smashed beer bottles dumped on the footpaths by yobs the night before and a completely empty double decker bus setting out on its Lincoln/ Grimsby circuit with nobody on it.
It’s a pity that those responsible will hardly be aware of these two separate episodes which characterise the way this country’s going.
Ron Jones, Rase Lane, Market Rasen
Thank you to Lincolnshire correspondent Anna Holden and the ever-reliable Market Rasen Mail.
Troubled singer Amy Winehouse has enough on her plate without this.
Middlesbrough Evening Gazette, 9 April 2010 (story):
Darlington student makes Lego Amy Winehouse
SINGER Amy Winehouse has been immortalised in Lego thanks to a budding artist. Justin Ramsden has been fascinated by Lego since he discovered the joy of destroying his brother’s models as a boy.
Now as an art and design student at Queen Elizabeth Sixth Form College, in Darlington, Justin believes Lego is more than a children’s toy – it can be used as a powerful art form.
As part of his BTEC course in art and design Justin chose to design a full-sized bust of a British icon out of 3,000 pieces of Lego.
He said: “I’ve been a fan for a while and she is quite cult British even though she does mess her life around so I decided to build Amy”, said Justin, 19, from Darlington.
The article’s dubious claim that it’s possible to be ‘immortalised in Lego’ is further discredited towards the end of the report:
Justin can’t afford to keep the models he has made and has to destroy them so he has enough Lego for his next project.
This is just typical of Britain’s ‘build them up to knock them down’ attitude towards celebrity.
And this online comment is wonderfully typical of Britain’s attitude towards students, drugs, sense of nationhood, and toilets.
Warm thanks to Dave King for forwarding this photo of the front page of the latest issue of the Chew Valley & Wrington Vale Gazette.
This week in Chew Valley and Wrington Vale… that is quite some hedge:
‘Champion Hedger Colin Clutterbuck of Stanton Drew with Chairman of the Wrington & Burrington Hedging Society, Dave Keedwell’ is surely one of the finest photo captions ever published.
I wonder if there is a financial prize; it would lend new meaning to the term ‘hedge fund’.