Tie-dye Dottie

Dottie the Grinch

We went to the Christmas party at Chadkirk Dog Training Club last night, as we have done for the last three or four years, but this time is was a little different because I was there as a member, rather than just the bloke who takes photos for their website.

I’ve been taking Dottie there for a couple of months in an attempt to instil in her the basics of obedience – ie stay, wait, sit, down etc. Read more ›››

Growing Old

I took my dad to visit the dentist this week, the first time he has been in the reclining chair of discomfort for over thirty years, and even then it wasn’t voluntary.

He and a colleague had been given the task of knocking down a wall at work. The boss walked in and distracted dad at the same time as the other man was swinging his sledgehammer and a brick hit dad squarely in the face. Read more ›››

Deck the halls…

It has been a busy day since we finally got round to decorating the house for Christmas.

It’s one of the jobs that seems to take up much more time than you think it should – I’m guessing that ‘advent’ translates from the original Latin as ‘the time for untangling fairy lights’.

We were out earlier to buy a tree, the live (or living dead) one that stands in conservatory as a sort of extension festive token for the artificial, pre-lit jobbie in the living room. And aren’t they expensive those ‘real’ trees? (That’s the artificial one below btw) Read more ›››


As Christmas approaches, more and more parcels of online ordered presents are arriving at Parrot Towers with all the necessary recycling of cardboard that this entails. But there would be a lot less if some of the suppliers could get their act together.

The photo is of a parcel that arrived from Amazon today. It measures some 21″ x 14″ x 5″ and all it contained was a new lead for Dottie that you can see plonked in the middle. Whether the brown paper filling was meant to protect the purchase or simply to stop it rattling about in its own vacuum of space is anyone’s guess. Read more ›››

I take more than a passing interest in conspiracy theories and quackery if for no other reason that I know if read the Daily Mail too often or watch too much television I could well end up believing them myself.

But it seems I am not alone – according psychologist, Rob Brotherton, in his book Suspicious Minds: Why We Believe Conspiracy Theories we are all of us hard-wired to be drawn to the outlandish and improbable because that is the way our brains work as we try to make sense of a complicated world… Read more ›››

Dolly Dot

I caught an item on the radio the other day when the two presenters expressed surprise that dogs outnumber cats among the UK pet population and you are more likely to find a dog, rather than a cat, is any given household. (PFMA Pet Population Survey 2015)

Presumably it is because media presenters are the sort of people who keep cats themselves and assume that everyone else is just like them. Goodness knows why. A more selfish and self-obsessed creature you wouldn’t wish to meet. And the cats are no better… Read more ›››

Playing Catch-up

Playing Catch-up

Do you remember when you were a kid and eighteen months felt like a lifetime? Then as you get older, it doesn’t seem so long until you reach my time of life and it is nothing more than the blink of an eye. As Douglas Adams put it, time is an illusion, lunchtime doubly so.

And yet, though it has been a year and a half since I committee any thoughts in this place, quite a lot has happened. I won’t bore you with the minutiae, but I thought a brief catch-up on events in the Parrot household would be in order… Read more ›››

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