Society

People, politics, tech, money, sport, work and entertainment all intertwine to make up today’s ever-changing, crazy, delightful and frustrating society. The majority of my second-hand-views are about life within our society and, with a left-of-centre stance, there’s bound to be something here that gets your goat. When it does, buy a bundle of tibs, donate one to my charity of choice, Stay Close to Neve, and get it off your chest with a retort – better out than in. Have fun, be good and keep at ‘em.

the cost of a general election

Irrespective of our political machinations over Brexit and the woes of our collective two-party system, at some point in time in the near-ish future there’s going to be another general election. All well & good I hear you say and not before time but do we realise the cost of an election and just exactly how many millions of pounds are spent in getting us to make our mark in the box that says yeah or nay?

woooOOOooo

As an indication of how the UK follows the lead of the US we are oft heard using the phrase ‘when America sneezes, Britain catches a cold’ and it never seems more pertinent than our yearly adoption of their Halloween and ‘Trick or Treat’ season frivolities. However, as these continue to get out of hand, I feel it’s time to call it a day and curtail our slavish participation.

tattoo you

I have one. Wee Tom has none. My ol’ man had several, including a bicep-adorning forever-heart lovingly inscribed with the name ‘Avril’. My mother’s name is Irene. The pros and cons, rights and wrongs, of tattoos have long been debated but, with the age-old stigma as ‘job-stoppers’ now lifted, should you bite the bullet and get inked?

for sale, to let, sold

Over a lovely pint last night I had a conversation with a property-owning pal of mine and the talk naturally turned to the potential impact Brexit may, or may not, have on house prices. With his properties scattered around the UK, he wanted to know should he be looking to sell some, all or none? My knee-jerk reaction was, like many remoaners, to anticipate panic in the housing market and sell, sell, sell without delay but I then put my thinking-cap on and did a little research.

greed is good

Ten years ago, the world’s oldest and one of the top-five investment banks, with assets in excess of $600bn, filed for bankruptcy and closed its doors forever. As the former employees of Lehman Brothers stumbled out onto Wall Street, Canary Wharf, Marunouchi and the Champs Elysees, cardboard boxes in hand, so the first of the financial dominoes toppled and the financial world went into collective anaphylactic shock. The rest, as they say, is history but the question now is when exactly is history going to repeat itself?

don’t take my word for it

As someone who has had his fingers burnt on many occasions and currently finds them on-fire in the crypto space, I came across several ancient axioms t’other day that thought I’d share them with you. You can be the judge of how much they’ve stood the test of time and if they still hold water.

’til death do us part

I had the pleasure this last weekend of attending a family wedding and I have to say a delightful time was enjoyed by all, none more so than the by the bride & groom themselves. As the latter was a cousin of mine, it’s fair to say that, although very dapper, he’s certainly in the full flush of life as opposed to the first bloom of youth! Now, having never travelled down the aisle it may come as a surprise that I remain both a fan of the institution and an eternal optimist for all those that commit to do so. Sadly, with more marriages failing than succeeding, everyone’s best-intentions can often appear misplaced.

luck o’ the irish

Who out there can remember the comedy gold of the then recently-appointed, Welsh Secretary of State, John Redwood, and his miming of their national anthem? It truly represents how low the bar can be set in political appointments and I strongly urge you to go find thirty seconds of the watch-through-the-fingers-cringing-coverage as it’ll brighten your day no end.

head for the hills

Last month’s decision by the New Zealand government to ban non-resident foreigners from being able to buy homes and tracts of ‘self-sustainable’ land has brought the subject of ‘prepping’ back into media consciousness. Although representing only 3% of all property transactions, many of the Kiwi country’s higher value purchases are being undertaken by West Coast tech tycoons, East Coast flash financiers and shady Bitcoin billionaires.

a bug’s life

Back in my motorcycling heyday one of my gixer-riding pals had his Arai skid-lid professionally sprayed with scenes and characters from one of Pixar’s early successes, A Bug’s Life, and mighty fine it looked too. The joke was that after we all returned from our Sunday morning countryside heroics our helmet visors were completely decorated with the remains of all manner of insect, hence, it’s a bug’s life.