Showing posts from June, 2023


  In January 2010 I was idly browsing through the ads for pet dogs on Gumtree when I spotted a very poor quality picture of a mainly white dog with some black markings.   The dog was sitting looking up at someone just out of shot, as if obedient to them, (Knowing Tilly now, I suspect treats may have been involved).   The description in the ad was somewhat less than detailed.   She was described as being a mix between a Bearded Collie and an Irish Wolf Hound, and the people that had her, wanted rid of her for free.   That, and a contact number was about it.   Even in the blurry shot on the ad she looked like a beautiful dog, and I was intrigued.   It had been around ten years since our last dog had died (aged 17), but at the time, my wife was nursing her elderly mother, and with a Wolf Hound in the mix I presumed that this would be a very large dog, so I didn’t mention it, thinking that someone would soon take on a dog like that.   Shortly after, the ad disappeared, so I thought tha

Devil's Advocate

  I’m growing increasingly convinced that every decently sized organisation needs to employ someone with a suitably cynical attitude in the position of Devil’s Advocate.   Such a position would not be designed to ensure that we suddenly start to become Satanists, in fact such a stupid suggestion would be exactly what the Devil’s Advocate (DA) would oppose.   Their main purpose in any organisation would be to counter those in direct power and the sycophantic yes men/women that seem to predominate in pretty much any organisation that I have ever dealt with.   I would imagine that in board room or other project meetings, pretty much every contribution they gave would start with the immortal words, “Catch yourselves on!” The position would need to have some clout, like the veto that can be exercised by any of the five permanent members of the UN Security Council.   OK, perhaps that is a bad example because it is used politically, but you get the idea.   So why do I think this is necessar

Accident or Suicide - You Decide

 This is another one from Sam, as found in the British Newspaper Archive.  I'll let Sam tell the tale, but when you read the details from the coroners court, you will have to remember what social attitudes were towards people who took their own lives back then.  I'm not convinced that the coroner made a completely honest decision. Some of the other stories on the page are interesting too.  I've put the picture in at full size, so you will have to scroll about a bit to see everything.  Enjoy, and add a comment with your analysis of the case if you would like. From Sam:   I'm attaching an article (copyright BNA) that I found about a railway accident in Bangor in 1928, which is mentioned in the book 'Be Careful, Don't Rush'. It happened in the railway cutting near us. I think Railway Cottages is the terrace at the bottom of Belfast Road; maybe workers could get directly onto the railway from the back.  On old maps there is a level crossing at each end of the