Tuesday, June 29, 2010

What the...?

There's something I don't understand.

Well, OK, technically speaking there are an infinite number of things I don't understand, but as a rule I tend to avoid drawing attention to them in case I manage to irrevocably tarnish the Grumbler's aura of intellectual invincibility, and the carefully nurtured belief that there is a bottomless well of things I know all about.

For example, "Why," Mrs Grumbler once asked me "do you always have to be right?" I suppose I should have recognised from the querulous tone that the question was intended to be rhetorical, but it's a husband's duty to lend his wife assistance if she asks, so I pondered for a minute. "I think," I ventured pompously, "it's something to do with the fact that I don't flap my mouth unless I'm pretty sure I know what I'm talking about.".  To this day, even after the last of the bruises has long faded, I cant help but think she, the Moon of my Delight, over reacted. Ah well, no day in which we learn something is ever completely wasted.

So back to my state of perplexity.  Regular visitors to this blog (there aren't many, its true) may have noticed that it doesn't get updated very often.  In their disappointment, they may chose to hit the 'next blog' link at the top of the screen, which has been thoughtfully provided by the folks at blogger to take the adventurous reader on to other folks scribblings of a presumably similar nature.  I've taken to hitting it myself, expecting to be transported off to the nefarious launchpads for the scribbly meanderings of other like-minded, beer drinking; politically incorrect and hopefully partially amusing observers of the human condition.

So why does blogger take the reader of the grumbler, invariably, to a daily diary of a god-fearing (and god bothering) Republican super-mom with an avowed ambition to adopt and church up any semi-sentient bipedal life-form under the age of eighteen unwise and unlucky enough to come within a mile of her presumably well-scrubbed doorstep?

Its just not on! I mean, what on earth have I written which makes the all-powerful servers at google decide that subscribers to the grumbler are going to enjoy reading the twisted burbling insanity of a middle aged bible literalist who truly believes that the long march to salvation is expedited by the act of locking teenage girls in their rooms with nothing to sustain them but bread, water and the word of God, with an occasion beating with a stick to enliven an otherwise boring day?  I dunno, but I swear that's where it took me. Not once, but thrice!

Why would someone who's just enjoyed a rant about the similarities between Marmite and Earwax being interested in the illustrated diary of someone who spends their evenings crocheting woollen cosies for rolls of toilet paper?

I mean, come on lads,  your own search engine returns this very blog as the number three hit for anyone typing the words "Elevator Facts" and hitting "go". And that little entry has less truth in it than the book of Mormon (Look, I had the facts delivered to me on huge tablets of stone, Ok, and I'd be happy to show them to you, but when I got up the next day they'd been stolen by an Angel).

Clearly I'm going to have to step up the contentious quotient round here if Im not to be trapped in some Wagnerian scale Ring-Cycle of Waltonesque niceness.

I dare say that even mentioning the kinds of blogs that people are being misdirected to is only likely to trick the servers into more of the same. So it'll be interesting to try it after this has been posted.

So, in the time-honoured interests of misdirection, be sure to come back next week when the Grumbler branches into investigative photo-journalism by gatecrashing the Penge and Norwood Naturist Star Trek Appreciation Societies' annual wife-swapping party, which this year play's host to the Dulwich Doggers' AGM, because the vicar needs the Church Hall that evening to set up for the following day's jumble sale.

PostScript.  I make most of this rubbish up - that much should be obvious. Sometimes, though, I enter terms into google just in case my fevered imagination has hit pay dirt.  I chose Dulwich Doggers because (a) Dulwich is near Penge (an area in south london which, to me, sounds more like a disease than a place) and (b) its nicely alliterative. Imagine my delight to discover  that the lane leading to Dulwich golf is apparently a well known spot for this particular branch of social intercourse.

Postscript 2.  Well, it didn't work.

Here's the 'profile' descriptions of the first two blogs that the 'next button took me to.

1) As you have probably noticed, I have been quite busy and unable to post much lately. The reason I have been busy is that I am participating in a Summer Chaplaincy program at a Hospital.

2) Wife of Jim, Mother of five, daughter of the King, I am saved by Grace, redeemed by the Blood of Christ, and being sanctified daily. Living in the world yet not being part of it is a battle to which I must rise for the sake of my family and the Glory of my Lord. Yet, it is Christ who works in me, Praise the Lord!

Why? I dunno, but Google works in mysterious ways. I pity any poor reader of those sites who ends up on mine. 

Sunday, June 13, 2010


A lady of the Grumbler's acquaintance (she cannot be named because she made me promise not to) recently had an accident and ended up with a scratched cornea - an exquisitely painful condition. Fortunately, it seems to be getting better now, though there have been a couple of flare-ups.

After the last day spent sitting in the dark with a cold cloth to try and get some respite from the pain, a return visit to the local barber-surgeon was in order. Of course, the National health service isn't much round here, and if the quack can't diagnose your ills by the taste of your piddle, or fix what's broken by sticking leeches to it, then he or she will be pretty much stumped and may refer you to a more qualified authority; such as a hedge-witch, for example.

So it was that when I was chatting to the good lady she informed me that, having donned a feathered head-dress and cast the bones (presumably they belonged to someone he'd failed previously failed to cure) our local shaman determined that the auspices were good, but if the eye got any worse she should visit an ornithologist.

Now you may, as I was tempted to, scoff at this quite obvious malapropism, but may I point out that the root of the word 'auspices' is 'auspex' - latin for "one who looks at birds".

Still, since this amazingly clever comment was followed up with "Apparently, you can get some kind of contract lens thingy to stop it from hurting" perhaps it was a mistake after all...