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Friday, 31 July 2015

Free Books!

All seven of my books are on free promotion today, 31st July. That's the entire Boldre Wood Trilogy, the adventure stories of Billy as his ancient homeland comes under the threat of invasion by a terrible enemy - Lucky Dip, the fun Henshall family saga, and the three Quirky Tales Anthologies packed with short stories of varying lengths and genres.

Perfect for filling your Kindle for you summer holidays! Just click the link in this post or the books on the right. Have a great summer.

Friday, 24 July 2015

I Think I'll Have Seen Everything ...

... when I see a Basset Hound fly. Well, technically he didn't fly, but he did survive a plunge out a window 30ft above the ground, and his owner is convinced he was saved by his ears.

When I was a child we had a Basset. She used to do the most spectacular somersaults. Not deliberately, you understand, but by the simple expedient of falling over her own ears. The Basset ear is almost a species in its own right, driven almost entirely by mischief and mayhem. So, I suppose it's possible that Remy the Basset managed to deploy his ears like a parachute but it doesn't seem likely. In our experience, they don't have a lot of control over them.

I heard a suggestion on the radio that the most likely scenario was that he did a combat roll upon landing. That conjures comical images of Bassets in cammo gear and night vision goggles, but they are surprisingly flexible and roll quite well. With ears like that they don't have much choice.

That said, I far prefer the image of Remy parachuting down, ears outstretched, to touch down like a feather. Good on you Remy. But stay away from top floor windows from now on.

Thursday, 16 July 2015

Beach School

What do you do if you're running a school on limited funds and desperately want to give the children a day out at the beach? If the school is Banks Road Primary in Liverpool, you think outside the playground. They approached local businesses with an idea and requests for help, and those local businesses stepped up and brought the beach to the school.

The result was ten tonnes of sand, donkey rides, fish and chip lunch, palm trees, coconuts and, according to the article on the beeb, children burying each other. I have slight reservations about that last one but kudos to all involved.

School sure has changed since my day. Can I start over please?

Wednesday, 8 July 2015

Return of the Nomad

Good grief, it's been a while since I found my way to the QT blog. The motorhome has been a fantastic addition to our lives, but it's come at the detriment of other things. In short, I spend less and less time at the computer.

We recently returned from a great trip to Devon, unaware of the Tunisian terrorist attack, or the Greferendum/ possible Grexit brewing in Greece. In all honesty, it's completely true that ignorance is bliss, however it's a heck of a shock when you come back to it all and find out what's been going on.

I've ploughed through catching up with the news and, while most of it's depressing and demoralising, there was one gem in the form of a young boy being issued a 'ticket' by a police officer for parking his ride-on motorbike in a no parking zone. I do love it when the old bill allow themselves to be playful.

Hope the sun's shining for you.

Wednesday, 29 April 2015

89 Year Old's Touchdown

I had to share this story with you:

An 89 year old former University of Kansas football player returned to the field to play a game, and even made touchdown. There may have been a little assistance along the way but the look on his face is priceless. I particularly like the footage of opposition players diving to the ground in their efforts to 'stop' him.

Hope that put a smile on your faces.

Wednesday, 22 April 2015

Technology Breakdown

A man in Colorado Springs became so enraged with his misbehaving computer that he took it outside and shot it. Eight times. According to the Colorado Springs Gazette the computer is not expected to recover.

The man's relief was short-lived as he was arrested for discharging a firearm in the city. Perhaps a sledgehammer would have been a safer bet, legally at least. Still, it's hard to imagine any judge punishing him too harshly. After all, haven't we all dreamed of wreaking similar vengeance on our baffling technology at times?


Thursday, 16 April 2015

Back to School?

Oh, how I remember that feeling - arriving at school in the full and despairing knowledge that the homework due in the first period lay in my bag, untouched, blank, a glaring testament to my utter inadequacy. Ah, that ten minute panic before registration, trying to find an obliging friend who would let me look at their diligent and carefully crafted efforts so I could attempt to throw something together that would pass muster. And the recriminations, the self-loathing, why was I such a flop as a pupil? Well, actually, it was because I could always find something much better to do with my time than homework, but such self knowledge was little help in those desperate minutes.

So it was that I read of Ben Bloom's disastrous live blog with tremendous sympathy. I imagine he was experiencing the pre-registration panic ten-fold. You see, he was attempting a live blog of a footbally type press briefing (don't ask me, I'm even worse at football than I was at homework), only to discover that the entire thing would be delivered in German, something his GCSE study of the subject had left him woefully ill-prepared for. The result was wonderful. What Ben Bloom lacks in international linguistics he more than makes up for in humour. How he kept his head in the circumstances I have no idea. According to the Telegraph, he has now gone home to start his German lessons and they have, thankfully, decided not to sack him. Well, they obviously recognise a star when they see one.

Tip: scroll down to 12:37 of the Telegraph's link and work your way up from there - Ben's blog reads from the bottom up.