13 Dec 2010


From the Telegraph ........

Lucky to get a response to any complaints made these days, how's this for service?

A customer who wrote to Marks And Spencer's complaining about the closure of a store received a poem as a reply.
Christine Baxter, 57, wrote a complaint letter in verse to express her concern that the Grantham High Street store was to close (and was) surprised when she received a reply in the form of this poem:-

I completely understand you're upset,
That our Grantham store will soon be for let.
This decision was not easy to make,
But it's no mistake,
And we settle on it full of regret.
We know we've been with you for years,
And we'll be leaving with eyes full of tears.
But if a store can't make money,
There's clearly something going funny;
This situation any business fears.
Marc [Bolland] wants to open more shops,
But to do this costs lots and lots.
We need the cash in our hand,
To spread the M&S brand.
Right now in Grantham we cannot. (07/12/2010)

In the words of the song SANTA CLAUS IS COMING TO TOWN, he's gonna find out who's naughty and nice and it certainly wasn't Rudolph. Yes, this is another story I probably should not have laughed at but the image of Mrs Cook fighting off this reindeer before resorting to throwing her dinner at it had tears of laughter running down my face.

A lone hill walker in the Scottish highlands endured a two-hour attack by a reindeer. Pat Cook, 57, was knocked over repeatedly by the animal as she tried to escape.
"One of my walking poles was thrown into the air. The reindeer kept trying to stick its antlers into me but I managed to brace my feet on them" she said.
"I began bashing it over head with my other walking pole."
(Finally) hurling bits of her packed lunch at the reindeer to distract it (as you would) she finally managed to reach safety. Austin Cramb (07/12/2010)

From the Guardian ........

Sticking with our four legged friends ......

Yes, this is a REAL baby panda being carried by a man dressed up as one.

(The above photograph) taken in Sichuan province, China document the latest efforts to safeguard the endangered panda.
The cub, which was born to a captive mother, is being prepared for a life in the wild. If all goes to plan the animal will be the first to go back to its natural habitat.
To ensure thew environment is as free as possible from human contact and influence, researchers slip into their panda suits when physical examinations are called for. Sam Jones (07/12/2010) (READ MORE.)

Not just us GEORDIE LASSES that are tough. It would seem that the nations postmen are also a fairly hardy lot.

It is the ultimate badge of honour during the cold snap: knees cruelly exposed to to the elements. Postmen (I'm presuming the postwomen have more sense) at the Royal Mail depot in Hemel Hempstead have continued wearing their summer uniform of shorts as snow has fallen.
The Shorts-Wearing Postman Appreciation Society on FaceBook may only boast 19 members (make that 20) but the image of shorts-wearing postmen bravely tramping through the snow to deliver Christmas cards and parcels has become one of the most uplifting symbols amid the widespread failure of Britain's infrastructure to cope with traditional winter weather.
Last year, postman Jason Urwin, from Shropshire, was hailed as 'Britain's bravest postman' for continuing to wear his navy-blue shorts throughout the cold spell. But more important than media exposure or masculine pride is the ....... (I might have guessed) warming round of drinks. Patrick Barkham (07/12/2010)

Postman John Frew in his shorts last week.

And so back to animals .... sort of.

A football mascot turned elected mayor who only stood for office as a joke (yes, he really stood for mayor dressed as a monkey) has been named among the worlds top 10 mayors.
Stuart Drummond, the major of Hartlepool*, rocked the established political parties in 2002 when he stood in his hometown as H'Angus the Monkey and won.
Drummond came 10th in the vote, beaten to first place by Marcelo Ebrard of Mexico City. (11/12/2010)

* Hartlepool of course being the town that, during Napoleonic times, infamously HUNG A MONKEY thinking it was a Frenchman.

From the Chronicle ...........

Ever been in a room with a portrait where the eyes seem to follow you around the room? Spooky isn't it? I had just this experience whilst spending the night locked in a nunnery in Poland but that's a whole other post.

Staring eyes have a sub-conscious effect in pushing people to behave themselves, scientists have found.
Researchers at Newcastle University found putting pictures of staring human faces on the walls of a cafe made people more likely to tidy up their rubbish.
Dr Bateson (leading researcher) said: "This study has implications for the fight against anti-social behaviour.
"For example if signs for CCTV cameras used pictures of eyes instead of  cameras they could be more effective." (09/12/2010)

From the Sunday Telegraph .......

Talk about having your bread and eating it .....

Praying for daily bread has been part of Christian liturgy for centuries, but now worshippers will be able to buy (five) loaves (and two fish?) in their churches.
Aisles will be filled with shoppers as well as churchgoers under plans to be published this week encouraging clergy to open stores in their buildings. Jonathan Wynne-Jones (12/12/2010) (READ FULL STORY)

And finally
 From the BBC News. Thanks for this link Husband dearest.

Broadfield pub petrol bomber runs into lamppost. (Click HERE to view my favourite news video)



Erratic Thoughts said...

Tracy you are a great source of fun info...
I've missed this place...
I so liked that poetic response...haha...
Xmas is doing some funny things to people :D

Mamakucingbooks said...


Boonie S said...

Great stories! I particularly like the panda one and the photo.
Is it cold where you are? It’s not too chilly here.

Have a good week, Boonie

Su said...

Bravest postman, or daftest postman? :)

chitra said...

I wonder how the post man makes his way thru' snow in short pants, really surprising.

A said...

Monday morning dose of interesting news of last week..thanks.

Melissa Gill said...

These posts always crack me up. I'm especially drawn to the Giant Panda info. It reminds me of our zoo keepers wearing the orangutan vest when hand rearing baby Kalijon.

They are doing remarkable things to boost the population of pandas in China. When a mother has two cubs, she can only raise one, and in the wild the second one would die, but in captivity they researchers pull one cub for hand-rearing immediately after birth, and then switch the two cubs every couple of days. I've not heard of them wearing panda suits, but it doesn't surprise me at all.

Vivienne said...

Are those postmen nuts? I am wearing serious layers in the house, let alone outside. I keep imagining chapped knees.

Suko said...

Our postal workers wear shorts, too. But it should be in the 80's today!

Love the panda pic!

Dorte H said...

... so when that little panda needs to go anywhere, they transport it in a panda car?

The Golden Eagle said...

For a second, I thought that was an actual panda carrying the baby--but then I read the rest.

Kelly said...

Now do you really think that baby panda is fooled by the human in the panda costume??

I'm with you on the reindeer story. I know it really isn't funny and I shouldn't laugh, but the way it's described does bring to mind some pretty funny images.

NRIGirl said...

Interesting.. Panda sure tops the list! Thank you!

Betty Manousos @ CUT AND DRY said...

That photo with the man dressed up as a panda is awesome!
As I was looking at that picture I thought for a second that was the mum Panda carrying the baby!

Great news, indeed!

Hope you have a great week ahead!
Big hugs!
B xx

Jenners said...

You always have the best stories (and photos too). I'm considering buying a picture whose eyes follow you around ... maybe I'll get some help around the house!

And how cool that a store wrote back in verse!!! I'd shop there forever just because of that!

Misha1989 said...

Haha Thanks for yet another fun-filled post! I love that picture of the man dressed as a panda.

Carrie at In the Hammock Blog said...

aww, i love the pic of the panda, i'll have to go read the article :)

dr.antony said...

You bring truly interesting stories.
I wonder who had the spirit to write that poem for the shop.Very innovative and inspiring idea.

GMR said...

Wow...a response in verse. Creative and yet somehow sarcastic....but the Panda story is so sweet...hopefully it works.

purplume said...

Love these especially the one about the portraits and the eyes.

naida said...

ya know, theres something very wrong about that panda suit...lol.

MOLLYC said...

I've said it before, and I'll say it again: THIS IS ABOUT THE BEST BLOG EVER. Petty Witter and the news. Best to you in the New Year, and please keep blogging! We started out together, and our blogs are most decidedly NOT CRAP. All love to you and Neal! molly

Lily said...

As always, I enjoyed this post very much. The bit about Hartlepoole was funny, one of my great friends is a monkey-hanger. Being from the US, she had to explain to me what that meant. :)

iamjenai said...

haha that's funny - the letter.

and btw, i saw your post a while ago saw the panda - i had to pause for a while and try to remember if pandas can walk.. and then I read your post. that made me laugh. lol

Bette said...

ooo…I love pandas. Here I bought a cuddly panda bag (L) that I can hardly put it down! I believe it is a GREAT find for every panda fanatic! hkpanda.freetzi. com