Oh come on, like I could resist posting this:
It's a bit like ASCII art, but done with D6s. Must've taken a lot more patience than I could manage. From [livejournal.com profile] karohemd.

PSA: I am away for a few days as of about an hours time when I get on the bus, I'll be staying at my sister's, and I'm not taking the laptop, I'll likely use hers to check in, but I won't be online at my normal frequency.

Devon types!

Having completely lost track of who reads this that's still in Devon, well, no set plans, Red Arrows this evening, going to Dartmouth Regatta at some point, and probably visiting my grandmothers in Slapton and South Pool Saturday, travelling back up Sunday, I'll be reliant on my sister and/or buses to get about, but it'd be cool to see people if possible.
Ever thought about the influence geography has on the way you vote? You probably ought to, it's had a massive effect on me. Y'see, I grew up in the 80s and did my GCSEs and A Levels in the 90s. that's under Thatcher and Major. But that's not the main reason I distrust the Conservative party, nor the main reason I hate the Tories[1]. That can be explained by a very simple statement.

Anthony Steen was my MP. He's still the MP for my parents, both surviving grandparents, two aunts and four cousins. Yes, that Anthony Steen. For a very very simple reason to hate the git[2], have a listen to this[3]:
BBC flash embed of the audio of the interview. I can listen to this again and again and again, it makes me happy ) I've met him. He visited my school a few times when I was a kid, and I met him subsequently. He really is like that. That interview has effectively ended his fairly undistinguished career. The great shame is that he's been forced out, because despite him representing one of the safest Conservative seats in the country, his behaviour since re-election in 2005 has been, well, interesting, and I reckon he'd have lost without the most recent revelations. Here are some highlights:
A summary list of some of the more egregious idiocies he's managed )

So, there you go. Due to the nature of the first-past-the-post electoral system, if you have a git like that as your MP, if you want to get rid of him, you have to vote for the candidate most likely to beat him. If you get used to voting for that party time and time again because they're the best chance of beating the incumbent git, many people begin to consider themselves supporters specifically of that party.

In 1997, I voted in my first General Election, and specifically voted against Steen. It was a vote for the Lib Dem candidate, but also broadly a vote to get the bastard Tories out and replace them with Blair. I often wonder what, if any, my partisan allegiance would be if I grew up in a part of the world where the Lib Dems were a distant third and Labour were challenging the Tories. Let alone if I'd grown up in a safe Labour area where the Tories had no chance.

One of the stupidities of the UK system is that where you live matters a lot more than who you support. I think it's about time we changed that, how about you?

Footnotes )
Last year, Yorkshire was hit by major flooding, and several decent pubs were forced to close. The pub just down the canal from Jennie's was shut for 9 months afterwards.

This year, the town closest to where my parents come from has been flooded. But the people of Kingsbridge didn't let that bother them:
BBC NEWS | UK | Pub regulars drink through floods

Now, there's a reason my parents left that area. There's a reason I left Devon. You're right, they probably had nothing better to do at all. But even so. Devon pubs stay open even when flooded.

Oh yeah, the accents in that video? Sound so very like the bits of my family that still live around there. I may have a Devonshire accent, but it's not that broad.
So, we're safely in Devon. We've Done Stufftm.

Actually got out of the house and walked all the way to the beach via the Slapton Ley nature trail this morning, threw the ball for the dogs lots, walked back up the hill and made lunch (my Granny has managed to comment that a) I'm getting a bit fat and b) I need to eat more already, I love my Granny's food).

Then we went to the local pub, listed in the Good Beer guide (Jennie had looked it up) so we knew it would have something. We go in, there are four pumps all with local beers on, which is nice. Barmaid is serving someone at the other end of the bar so we're guessing what beer will be what.

Then the barmaid turns to serve us, and as we look at each other there's one of those moments of recognition.

Hadn't seen my Aunty Mo for at least 5 years, didn't know she worked at the pub 5 minutes walk from Granny's house.

Beer was bloody good too.

Then we went up to the village fete, where Granny was making creme teas (proper Devon fasion with the cream on the scone and jam on top, none of this butter malarky on a cream tea, let alone putting the fam on first--weird foreign types do that sort of thing).

After that we took a different walk, down to Deer Bridge and along what was the old stream where I learnt Pooh Sticks with Granddad, but is now reclaimed into marshland as part of the reserve. Rather nice overall.

Gotta go, Granny's made tea. Apparently the table is straining under the pressure.

No real time tor ead other entries, we're lucky to get a wireless connection at all, but thought it was worth an entry.
Two things. 1) I won my category in the Blog Awards. You all have very bad taste. This puts me through to the second round, so, y'know
The Yorksher Gob -SB's blog of the Year: Sexiest Male Blogger
Vote me for overall winner!
[Poll #1247348]

2) We're off to Devon to visit family as of this afternoon. Staying at my octagenarian grandmothers in Slapton, where we're likely to be completey net deprived, travelling back Thursday. We'll likely visit people with internet and/or go to a cafe at some point, but don't expect SB's normal level of spamminess let alone anything at all from me.

Have fun y'all, remember to vote...
Via Steve, a short edumacational film about paying attention when driving, that lovers of the roads of Devon and bikers everywhere will concur with. Oh, there's a tank in it:

YouTube - A Day out in Devon, set up to promote their Bikers campaign. I approve. Not that I've ever actually ridden a motorbike, but I still approve.
OK, more answers to the interests meme. [livejournal.com profile] two_brains asked me:
Old Harry's game
the checkbox tyranny resistance
thursday next
And then [livejournal.com profile] the_vin proposed:
Devon, Germany, Single transferable vote
So here we go:
Old Harry's Game - (and how I met Jennie) )
The Checkbox Tyranny Resistance - and more on how Six Apart sucks )
Thursday Next - books by Jasper Fforde )
Devon - I was born there )
Germany - I wouldn't mind living there )
Single Transferable Vote - the Best Electoral System in the World )

Well, Doctor Who is now at 70% complete on the download, in the meantime, anyone else want to ask me about my interests, or want me to ask about theirs?
matgb: Artwork of 19th century upper class anarchist, text: MatGB (Default)

British Liberal, house husband, school play leader and stepdad. Campaigner, atheistic feminist, amateur baker. Male.

Known to post items of interest on occasions. More likely to link to interesting stuff. Sometimes talks about stuff he's done. Occasionally posts recipes for good food. Planning to get married, at some point. Enjoying life in Yorkshire.

Likes comments. Especially likes links. Loves to know where people came from and what they were looking for. Mostly posts everything publicly. Sometimes doesn't. Hi.

Mat Bowles

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October 2015


Stuff and nonsense

I'm the Chair of the Brighouse branch of the Liberal Democrats.

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