Astonishing legroom.

When they aren’t on strike or being bailed out by the Government, National Express trains are pretty swanky. Free Wi-fi, an in-flight (on rail) magazine – LiveWire! – and power supplies for laptops and mobiles. But I’ve just discovered a seat on the train with at least 15% extra legroom in standard class. It’s about 2 rows in from the end on the carriage, close to the suitcase rack/bay thing.

Look out for it if you value your patellas.

Knees and seat in space-between-them shocker!

Knees and seat in space-between-them shocker!

Apocolypse over Stevenage.

Friday. Cloudy. Just before the rain. Quite heavy rain at that. And thunder. And pinkish lighting.

By the power of Greyskull. Hooooo!!!

"By the power of Greyskull. Hooooo!!!"

By the power of Greyskull. Hooooo!!!.

The sky is not a happy bunny.

Oh well, the fact that I’ve posted this and both of you have read this proves that the world didn’t end after all. It was just a few clouds. But it was a close call. Consider it a warning.

Holiday in Danesgate and Southgate.

Just when Parking in Stevenage was in danger of becoming boring and monotonous (the very thought!) Stevenage Borough Council set about shaking things up by introducing tree-lopping season.

A pre-lop warning.

A pre-lop warning.

They put a little sign up to warn us that Swingate would have much fewer spaces for a couple of days, so on Tuesday I paid a visit to Danesgate, Wednesday I had to go as far as Southgate and Thursday back to Danesgate.

Look - here I am in Danesgate, of all places!

Look - here I am in Danesgate, of all places!


And I haven't been in Southgate since the snow!!!

And I haven't been in Southgate since the snow!!!

Friday it was back to Swingate. Any evidence of tree-lopping? No. But the whole week had been an incredible adventure nonetheless.

Incidentally, I learned that Barry Norman (who lives not far away) opened the Holiday Inn in the background, just over the way from Southgate. Obviously, rooms with a Southgate view are extra.

Whatever your level…

I little something I’ve been overseeing at work. It’s a short film to encourage teenage lads to keep playing footie when they leave school behind. It’s an almost an exact shot-for-shot spoof of (or homage to) the Nike ‘Take It To The Next Level’ ad from a couple of years ago.

I can’t claim too much personal credit for this (and if you don’t like it, I had absolutely nothing to do with it).

Music courtesy of Supergrass who let us have the track for next to nowt.

Enjoy.

I’m being stalked – by an advertising campaign.

For some reason, Sony Ericsson have decided to target me personally. Everywhere I go I see the same ads for the same product, the Sony Ericsson W995 Walkman phone. And the thing is, I already know everything there is to know about this phone – I’ve been working on the campaign myself for the last 3 months.

I’ve been focused on the online campaign, so if it follows you on the web, I apologise. But out in the real world, it will not leave me alone. I’m going to court for a restraining order.

Here it is waiting for me on the platform. Every morning.

Here it is waiting for me on the platform. Every morning.


On all the tables outside BagelMania where I get my morning latte.

On all the tables outside BagelMania where I get my morning latte.


It follows me on taxis...

It follows me on taxis...


And it's in every magazine I open.

And it's in every magazine I open.

So, if you’re the media buyer and your core target is a 39-year-old male commuting from Hertfordshire to Central London who reads magazines while drinking coffee, jolly well done. You got me, OK!

5 things you never knew about Duncan Norvelle.

At Christmas 2008, Duncan “Chase me” Norvelle was appearing at the theatre in Stevenage in a ‘Legends of the Oche’ show/tournament. I commented at the time – but re-reading my post I was curious to know if he was gay or not, given that his whole routine was based around limp-wristed campery.

So I Googled and here are 5 things that I didn’t know this time yesterday:

1. Duncan Norvelle is straight (married to Jane (Norvelle)).

A heterosexual man, yesterday.

A heterosexual man, yesterday.

2. Duncan Norvelle hosted the pilot show which eventually went on to become Blind Date.

BLINDER DATER as our Graham used to say.

BLINDER DATER as our Graham used to say.

3. Duncan Norvelle scored a record 281 as a celebrity guest on Bullseye.

You get nothing for 2 in a bed in this game.

You get nothing for 2 in a bed in this game.

4. Duncan Norvelle is a part-time landscape gardener – and sometimes does other celebs’ gardens.

One of his creations. S'alright innit.

One of his creations. S'alright innit.

5. Duncan Norvelle can be seen selling furniture in Kamenka furniture store on Doncaster Road, Stairfoot.

Dunc puts the 'furn' in 'furniture'.

Dunc puts the 'furn' in 'furniture'.

I, for one, feel better for knowing all of the above.

Bookmark Parking in Stevenage

Nuthin’ but Swingate.

I dunno. Life used to be a little more exciting than this. I started this whole blog because I was living on a knife-edge (you’re never far from one in Stevenage).

Please disperse. There is nothing to see.

Please disperse. There is nothing to see.

I have 5 car parks to park in – FIVE, I tell you! It used to be like Russian Roulette with a Ford Focus and an electronic pass card, but now it’s just Swingate, Swingate, Swingate. Betfair have stopped offering odds.

Parking anywhere else has become too much of a long shot. Sayonara Southgate. Arrivederci Danesgate. Adios Daneshill. Seeya St George’s Way Multi-storey. Etc…

I was thinking about this today as I swung into Swingate. And do you know what? I got the last space. Skin of my teeth. And do you know something else? Someone drove in after me. As I walked to the station, I watched to see what would happen and then quickly lost interest and went about my business. Much like you in fact.

A very unambitious ambition.

How much fun can you have Parking in Stevenage? I done the ‘using my pass to raise the barrier while not quite stopping’ trick – and to be fair, I quite impressed myself.

I’ve done the ‘birdlime experiment’.

What’s left?

Well, for my next trick, I’m going to try and park in every spot in Swingate. Obviously not in one go – that would be ridiculous. And I won’t bother looking for sponsorship either.

Bingo.

Bingo.

I’m keeping an informal record in my head of spots I’ve parked in and the one left. There are the usual suspects – like the handful that are left for me by the time I arrive in the morning. So I really need to make an effort to park in spaces I haven’t yet filled. According to Stevenage Borough Council’s little chart, there are 86 spaces. I need to make a chart. I must have done over half by now, but the only way to do this is to tick ’em off as I go. Wish me luck.

Something for the CV, no?

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