Thursday, May 24, 2018

So here's the thing - On Lough Foyle

Ahh...Lough Foyle.

For those that don't know Lough Foyle sits in between County Londonderry in Northern Ireland and County Donegal in the Republic of Ireland (ROI).  Ownership of said lough is in dispute between the UK Government and their counterparts in the ROI.  It's be going on for awhile now and a conclusion doesn't seem to be getting any closer.

However, on TV tonight in Northern Ireland on a program highlighting the details of this, one of the commentators, i can't remember which one unfortunately, stated that this dispute had been going on for 'hundreds of years'.

Ummm...strange.  Consider this.

The Island of Ireland was split in 1922 after violent insurrection against British control.  Subsequently the Republic of Ireland was also formally formed then. The six counties that form  Northern Ireland remained a part of the UK. Before that the entire Island of Ireland had been under British control for hundreds and hundreds of years.

Now even considering my appalling mathematics that is 96 years ago.

So who then was disputing ownership of the Lough, as the commentator stated, for hundreds of years?
Before 1922 the entire Island of Ireland was a part of the United Kingdom so the lough was also part of the United Kingdom?

Therefore before 1922 ownership of the Lough wasn't disputed by anybody?  So where the commentator gets hundreds of years from is lost on me.  I do wish someone had asked him but unfortunately no one asked him to clarify his ridiculous comment.

And before someone starts nothing political here just simple geography (and a bit of History).
Personally i couldn't really care less about Lough Foyle.  Never been there and probably never will but still....i do like to nit pick about these sorts of things.

Monday, October 09, 2017


Hard Playstation Vita games are pretty difficult to come across these days so i was really pleased to get hold of this one recently.
It's actually a Chinese Official release with a English language option which makes a pleasant change.
I know that Limited Run Games have also released a very limited hard copy of Ys Origin too but it's different from this one (Box Art etc) and like most LRG releases it's now impossible to find unless you are willing to pay a lot for it.

I haven't tried it yet, so many games so little time, but i do like some of the Ys series of games so i'm hopeful that i'll appreciate this one too.

Thursday, September 21, 2017

On Plagiarism and Katniss Everdeen.

I read a lot of the old so-called 'Pulp' Science Fiction and Fantasy magazines mainly from the 1950's and 1960's.  They go back much longer than that and some are still going today but that's another story for another day.

Anyway, at the minute i'm about half way through the May-June 1974 issue of Worlds of IF.
It contains a short story by Fred Saberhagen  called Berserker's Planet and the plot seemed somewhat familiar to me.

Part of the back story in the first chapter goes something like this -

'The God was pleased to grant to humankind the privilege of fighting for a seat at his right hand, the competition being open to the sixty-four finest heroes of the age.  To accomplish this purpose the inhabited world had been arbitrarily divided into 64 districts, and the local rulers of every district where invited to send - the details of the selection process being left largely up to them-their mightiest warrior.  All but one of the contestants was expected to die in the Tournament, and that one, the winner, would be granted the status of a demi-god and would take his seat at God's right hand'.

Yep.  Me too.

Sunday, February 15, 2015


There are many things that irritate me about growing older.  Loosing my hair and having to urinate much more often than i used to are just two of them.
The other one is death.
When you're younger all there ever seems to be is engagements, weddings and babies being born. Nowadays the only things i seem to hear about is someone dying.

An old friend of mine died this weekend.  I use 'old friend' for want of another, more appropriate description.
I never really liked the guy that much and always got the feeling that he felt a similar way about me, but i did spend a fair few of my formative teenage years in his company.  I haven't seen or spoken to him in probably over 30 years but it's still upset me (just a little).

The newspaper obit said he had 4 children and I'm obviously sad for them.
There is something intrinsically unfair about this whole living business it seems.
Here's me, drifting along day by day with, in reality, no sort of life whatsoever and the chances of ever having a family more or less gone and this poor bloke dies at an early enough age.  I think, if memory serves me correctly, that he was a few years younger than me.  I've no idea how he died.  He might have been ill for years for all I know.  It's just not right somehow?

If i feel like it I may even pop along to his funeral on Tuesday but I probably won't.  That would mean getting up during the day and I don't do that much these days.

So there you have it.  Another one bites the dust and I'll still probably wake up in the morning.

Tuesday, December 02, 2014



I must confess that this novel was purchased solely on it's subject matter.  I have never previously read anything by this author and am led to believe that this is her first in the Historical fiction genre.
Considering that it's a reasonable enough effort and an enjoyable read.

I would imagine that most admirers of the late British Queen will read almost anything with her name or image on it.  I am as guilty of that as anyone else  i'm not ashamed to admit.

The novels real focus is not, however, solely based upon Anne.  She is, obviously, a principal character but it's more on the life of Henry Percy and the author's fictional character Will Chatton who becomes the Earl's manservant and friend. 

The author's writing style has some irritating faults as does the novel in general - 

1.  She spends way to much time and appears to have an unhealthy obsession with what her characters are wearing.  It seems that every other page there is a lengthy and very dull full description of her characters outfits.

2.  I found Chattons meteoric rise from servant to a prosperous businessman somewhat hard to believe although i did generally like the character.

3.  Some of the language she uses is also a little difficult to comprehend.  Does the author really believe that two people, in the comfort of their own homes, had private conversations in such a formal manner?

4.  The ending is very, very rushed.  It almost seems as if Ms.Andrews simply got fed up and rushed off the last few chapters just to be finished with it.

It may seem that i'm being a little harsh which is not my intention.  I did enjoy it but it's nothing special.  I won't read it again and would find it difficult to fully recommend. 

It's stunningly average in every possible way.