Author: simonelson1968

An ambition accomplished……

I used to run a karaoke business and have even tried a cabaret spot at a social club (which went okay but was bloody hard work…. so went back to karaoke hosting)

But singing to backing tracks is one thing but I always wanted to sing with a live band or ‘Jam’ with someone…. At a garden party recently I collared two members of a band and after a five minute chat and a thirty second rehearsal we came up with……Bye Bye Love and then followed it with Billy Joel’s Piano man… Here’s a short burst of Bye Bye Love

Photo credit – Glenn Adams

Video Credit – Laura Elson

What A Bargain!

We all love a bargain don’t we?…. It’s just our definition of ‘a bargain’ differs greatly from person to person……. Here’s what I DON’T class as a bargain….

– Pair of jeans reduced from £150 to £50 in a sale….. and the buyer says …’I just had to have them I saved a hundred quid.’ They haven’t saved a hundred quid they’ve spent 50 quid on a pair of jeans they probably didn’t need….

– Buying something off Ebay for a fiver that looks almost identical to an item elsewhere at at £20…. It may look the same but invariably it will be a pale imitation of the more expensive version and the packaging will probably be more useful than the item itself within a few weeks.

What I do class as a bargain is going out to buy an item, expecting to pay £Y and paying £X (X being a fraction of Y) for the item…..

My Good lady asked me what I wanted for an upcoming birthday and I suggested a nice bottle of whisky, We don’t spend a massive amount at birthdays just what the other can afford without resorting to credit cards as we haven’t got a joint account (Why am I telling random strangers our financial arrangements and present buying strategies)

I then changed my mind and said ‘how about a set of Bluetooth headphones they’re about £30-£40 for a cheap pair.’ I got the green light and began to start trawling the net for a pair…. Then whilst shopping in a supermarket we spotted a pair reduced from £40 to a tenner, a quick google in the supermarket on my phone did show that the cheapest price for the exact same ones was £30 and some sites were charging £60, we snapped them up and I got the whisky as well. As I said a real bargain as I wanted a pair.

The other incident involved a pub… sometimes you order a round get a tenner out then have to change it for a twenty…… In a ‘certain’ chain pub this weekend, I ordered a pint, a glass of wine and a soft drink for little-un…. I was told the price and put the tenner away and got a fiver out, then got change! That’s not just a bargain….. That’s ‘HOLD THE FRONT PAGE’ type of news










The Lottery, Cheese and Entropy….

We all love a go on the lottery, we know we probably won’t win big, but there is that small chance that we might win a few grand. If you can afford it and have the inclination to play it, what’s the harm?   The trick is not to become addicted to it and spend hundreds of pounds a month chasing the dream. I have one line of numbers and I play by direct debit. They email me if I win and pay prizes into my bank account.

If something disastrous happened to our family finances then this would be the first luxury to go. I deliberately haven’t memorised my numbers which I picked at random a few years ago,  I know what half of them are but if I stopped playing and saw the winning lottery numbers, I couldn’t be certain they were mine and therefore not regret it for the rest of my life (clever eh?).

I do occasionally have an additional line or two, based on either a hunch or a madcap idea I had that week, as everyone who knows me will tell you that I do not own a Ferrari and live in a mansion…. I am happy to share them. They will I realise make me look at best a little weird and at worst totally barking with no grip on reality.

Here we go……. in no particular order…

1. Three key numbers. Pick 3 numbers and do 5 lines with these 3 numbers present in all 5 lines. IF (big IF there) these 3 come up then the chance of a big win is significantly increased. I did get 4 numbers once using this method once….. but the increased ticket price has made this idea prohibitively expensive taking it from a fiver to a tenner.

2. Playing every number. Write all the numbers down and pull them one by one out of hat. You will have at the end 8 lines with totally different numbers and 1 line with 2 unique and 4 repeated numbers. When the numbers are drawn in the lottery you WILL have all the numbers, obviously the trick is getting them all on the same line……..

Again this has been made too expensive to do on your own but for a syndicate this could be a good idea…. done this one every now and again with a few mates but no luck……

Now we get to the slightly odd ideas….

3. Cheese and red wine. That’s right you did read it correctly. Cheese and red wine. Occasionally a story comes along in the papers where a winner claims to have dreamt the winning numbers. I tried to pre-empt this by eating a particularly strong cheese  (we are talking at least a blue Stilton or Gorgonzola) and downing a bottle red wine after watching that nights lottery draw… never dreamt any numbers or won anything but the wine and cheese were both good so the problem with me trying this again is……?

4. Entropy and the multiple universe theory. This one is a weird idea but is soundly based a concept in Physics and Maths so errrr….. bear with me….

The multiple universe theory says that every possible outcome is covered and acted up on, therefore every happening or choice we make generates another time string (told you that you would think I was barking) and entropy is the concept that every event is random but by bringing in a second random event, the original event ceases to be random, that’s my take on it anyway after reading dozens of baffling pages on ‘Tinternet’ if a Science teacher is reading this then he may think this is complete b*****ks, if you are and do… then you can explain it properly to me and then for an encore explain why water (being made from a fuel – hydrogen and an accelerant – oxygen) doesn’t burn.

Anyway back to entropy if you cut up a lottery play-board and mix it with rice and then throw it into a box…. you’d think that it might create a random event that mirrored the one in your universe… well it doesn’t. I can guarantee it.

But the multiple universe theory says that hundreds of different versions of me have won every single lottery draw. Just not the version of me writing this…..

I won’t include the links to Wikipedia articles on Entropy or Multiple universe theories as both articles went about fifteen feet above my head…

5. Advance knowledge of events (or precognition). There is a theory that because we know about an event that happens tomorrow after it happens tomorrow, then we actually know about it today. We just don’t know we know (did you follow that?) therefore we can concentrate on that future event and see it happening today….. Tried it…. NO YOU CAN’T……

And now the most reliable and sensible idea.

6. Keep the same numbers. Pick 6 numbers and play them every draw. The odds of getting 3 numbers from  6 is about 30 to 1 (it is I promise, I’ve worked it out) so every 30 draws or so (15 weeks or 3 – 4 months) you should win £25 quid… and I would say I probably do….but one day the 3 numbers might combine with a 4th  or 5th.

There you go, 6 ideas to win the lottery and I didn’t even mention the last couple of paragraphs of my Time Travel blog post… If you want weird  with a capital W then that’s it.

So to sum this blog-post up, I’m slightly strange, drink wine and eat cheese in the name of science and the most reliable way of winning the lottery is the most boring…. (number 6)

Photo credit. Me. I took it a while ago at a wedding with a phone so forgive the quality.

Mind Worms…

Don’t you just hate them? I don’t mean the ones like Ricardo Montalban put in Chekov’s ear in ‘The Wrath of Khan’ I mean a short snippet of a song or film that goes round and round in your head…

At the moment I seem to be whistling ‘Honey’ by Bobby Goldsboro…. I don’t own the track, I’ve never owned the track….. I don’t even like the bloody song, but I must have heard it a few weeks ago on Radio Two…. Damn you Ken Bruce….. and its stuck in my head.

Previously I was whistling ‘Whole Again’ by Atomic Kitten. I don’t own that track either but I do quite like it (oops did I just type that confession out loud). With that song I did consider getting a slow acoustic backing track made and using it to enter the X Factor again with it (yes.. again… I did enter once but that’s another story and a very short one…no you didn’t see me on the tele-box), as the judges always love it when contestants do that, but don’t you just hate it when the judges say when presented with something like the above say… ‘You really made that song your own’ or ‘You really smashed it’…. choose in your head one of the following voices Smug, Geordie or Irish…..

Anyway enough of the tangent.. back to mind worms.. I also used to whistle Tom Good’s (Richard Briers character in ‘The Good Life’) little ditty normally when out my depth slightly doing some form of D.I.Y…. My wife twigged this though and started to say “you don’t know what your doing do you?” my reply….. ‘Nope not got a clue’ many a wonky wardrobe has been built or slanted shelf put up to that particular tune…

I have film quote worms as well….. If anyone says the word ‘Doctor’ I have to say….. ‘I’m a Doctor Jim, Not a brick layer……’ (sorry more Star Trek there….) and I can’t pass a melon in a supermarket without thinking of Edward Fox pretending one was Charles De Gaulle’s head in ‘Day of the Jackal.’

There are a few benefits of mind worms though if someone is moaning about something in a shop or queue and I over hear them….. I can burst into a verse of ‘LET IT GO……. LET IT GOOOOOO…….’ from Frozen and feign innocence, saying my son had watched it the night before.

Mind Worms are never classics though are they? it’s always the annoying songs that get stuck in my head. I never whistle anything uber cool like The Clash or The Smiths.

If you can’t remember how the song ‘Honey’ goes I’ve put the Karaoke version below… Click on it at your peril it will get into your mind and you will have to buy the track and we will end up with Bobby Goldsboro at number one in a few weeks…. Don’t say I didn’t warn you…..