Category Archives: General

Northern Lights Quests

Yep still at this after 25 years…

Continue reading Northern Lights Quests

Cat’s will do exactly what you expect

That probably won’t be what you want though. For example our recent adoption from a recently deceased friend was developing a fascination for clawing at the carpets and rugs. Min decided that we should get a scratching post. I thought a scratching post was, well, a post, but Min had other ideas so we now own this 4 foot tall thing:

Note the absence of a cat in that photo. I joked with Min when we were buying this thing that the cat would probably be more interested in the cardboard box it came in than the scratching thing. Sure enough:

But not only is the box more interesting, the plastic wrapping that this post thing came in got more attention!

Needless to say the various toys we got her get ignored. That green bit of rope in the top picture however, which is a discarded piece from an old Ultras flag, is the greatest toy ever.

*sigh* At least Simon understands.

Bailouts, loans, interest rates, and the EU

It seems that our new government is digging its heels in and the rest of the EU (probably Germany) isn’t happy.

So let me put the scenario into perspective. Ireland cannot borrow from the market at the moment, we are apparently going to stay a free market capitalist country, so we will be getting money from there again. What we need is money from the EU/IMF in the interim to get us through the mess we are  until we can borrow money cheaper from the market than the IMF.  The silly rate we initially agreed to was never going to be paid, the idea was that by making the money available the markets would open up again to Ireland to cheaper cash. That hasn’t happened, so we’ll need more money, and we’ll be taking it at a sensible interest rate. And by sensible I mean a rate that the Irish economy can actually have a hope of paying back. That’s the rational thing to do. And if they don’t give it to us at a sensible rate the precious Euro will collapse. And the longer that the rest of the EU takes to cop on to this the heavier a battering the Euro will take in the precious markets.

The last government may have gone cap-in-hand, the new lot, even if I don’t like them, seem to realise that we have plenty of cards in our hand.


Surdo beaters

I needed to get some new surdo beaters for the SRFC Ultras. Unfortunately these are about €15 to buy. So I decided to try and make some rather than buy them.

After a couple of iterations I came up with a beater that seems to work well. The challenge is to come up with a beater that sounds right when hit hard. I had a proper beater to compare to and also a nice big surdo to hit. The neighbours probably didn’t appreciate the testing.

So heres the optimal way I found.
Materials needed:
sweeping brush handle.
old (clean!) thick socks
duck tape

1. Cut the top 10cm or so off the toe of the sock. This will be the covering on the beater.
2. Cut the rest of the sock into strips.
3. wrap a strip around the head of the beater and tape in place. repeat until you have no more sock, or until is about the right size and shape.
4. Cut the bottom off the baloon. Then stretch the baloon over the the material. Do this three times. This compresses the material the right amount.
5. Lastly fit the sock over the baloons and duck tape it in place.

Hat tip to Cardinal Fang over at instructables for the idea.