Friday, 30 April 2010

Barrys for Stuart

You'll be delighted to learn that this blog will be a General Election-free zone over the next days with lots of other excitement mercifully lined up for the Bank Holiday weekend.

But I've got to show you this.

Regular readers will be aware of my huge-forearmed next door neighbour Barrington who is in his element during times of crisis and an all around top man.

Like me, he is also a fan of Stuart Andrew, the Conservative Parliamentary Candidate for Pudsey, who has helped us both and will certainly be receiving my support in the polling booth next Thursday.

However, there's nothing like nailing your face to the mast and yesterday, when I received my latest piece of Stuart's election literature (pictured above), I found this was exactly what Barrington and his partner Eva had done.

Because opposite is a close up of the story on the bottom left-hand corner of the leaflet.

And what about that!

If you can't read it properly, this is what "Barry" (as he had to become for reasons of space) and Eva say:

"We are voting Conservative because we are worried about the way our country is going. We need a new direction to deal with the economy and we know Stuart will be a great MP."

Hear! Hear!

And what a small world we live in.

Thursday, 29 April 2010

I'll name that Brown in one

So, what kind of a 24 hours have you had? Any worse than Gordon? I certainly hope not.

I was working on laptop at home yesterday and was able to follow the so-called "Bigotgate" episode quite closely. And it truly was one of the most bizarre twisty-turny sagas I can recall in my lifetime.

I'll not go into all the detail again here because no doubt you, like me, are a bit bored of it all now.

But the question which kept entering my mind was, did I feel sorry for our beleaguered Prime Minister?

And the answer each time was a resounding no. The reason is very simple.

He's a ****.

Wednesday, 28 April 2010

Loonies? Make your own mind up


With just a week of General Election campaigning left to go, you may have thought you had heard enough "exciting," "bold" and "innovative" ideas from politicians to last you a lifetime.

But no, because the Monster Raving Loony Party have just published their manifesto and, I have to say, some of their policies are worthy of serious consideration by whoever does end up running our lives after May 6th.

For example, they have proposed introducing a 99p coin to "save on change." Apparently, this pledge also appeared in their 2005 manifesto but, according to party leader Howlin' Laud Hope, "no-one noticed it then, so we're still shouting about it now." Quite right too.

Other suggestions - individual candidates can pick from an extensive list or choose their own - include:

- All socks to be sold in packs of three as a precaution against losing one

- Self-responsibility to be banned on health and safety grounds

- Making it illegal for superheroes to use their powers for evil

- Change the English symbol of three lions to three badgers

- The House of Commons Speaker to be replaced by the latest audio equipment

- All forms of greyhound racing to be outlawed to stop the country going to the dogs

And my personal favourite, "ban all terrorists from having beards as they look scary." That should spoil Gerry Adams' breakfast.

Howlin' Laud Hope says he has had a "wonderful" reaction to his own campaign in Witney so far, where he is challenging Conservative Leader David Cameron, and hopes to keep his deposit.

However, his party has warned that, if he gets that many votes, he is obviously "not loony enough" and will have to leave.

Tuesday, 27 April 2010

Peppa is a Tory


So now we know: Peppa Pig, Jamie's favourite TV star, is no fan of the Labour Government. I always knew she had something about her.

In case you haven't heard, the Labour Party put out a press release a few days ago saying Miss Pig had accepted an invitation to join poison pixie Yvette Cooper and Cabinet Office Minister Tessa Jowell on a visit to a children's centre, "to highlight Labour's policies to support families."

But then this morning, E1 Entertainment on behalf of the pig of the moment, confirmed that Peppa had indeed been invited but would not be there.

It added in a statement: "Peppa Pig is a well known fan of Sure Start children's centres but, in the interests of avoiding any controversy or misunderstanding, we have agreed she should not attend."

(Funnily enough, I've never heard her praise Sure Start children's centres once during her piggy adventures, despite seeing every single episode of every series more times than I dare recall).

But the implications of her non-appearance remain obvious.

Peppa Pig wants change in this great country of ours, and the only way to achieve real change on 6th May is to elect a new Conservative Government with David Cameron as our new Prime Minister. Good for her (and well done to Daddy Pig who has similar views to me on several matters and who probably played a pivotal role in shaping her decision).

By the way, you may remember a few weeks ago I wrote about my mate Rodney who is standing as the Conservative and Unionist candidate in East Antrim. I promised to keep you informed on how he's getting on.

The answer is very well and he's now increasingly hopeful of removing the incumbent DUP muppet who, over the last five years, has proven to be massively out of his depth in Westminster.

Underlining that point, yesterday Rodney received the backing of someone who actually does command widespread respect in our nation's Parliament.

If you live in East Antrim, please vote McCune on May 6th.

Monday, 26 April 2010

Balls to him

News that Ed Balls had been fined £60 and had three points placed on his driving licence was enough to make my Monday morning a lot less gloomy than many previous Monday mornings I can think of.

But that does not take away from the fact that the offence he committed was very serious.

As Her Majesty's Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families, Ed Balls holds a position of incredible importance in our nation's Government and is an individual who should obviously be setting an example to others, particularly the young.

So, as someone who regards himself as a reasonably responsible father, I wish I had the opportunity to say the following to Mr Balls directly:

NA NA NA-NA NA!!!!!!

Football

Yesterday morning, I did what many proud fathers do with their sons on Sunday mornings - I took him to play football in the park.

And, whilst there, I recorded two very short pieces of film which illustrate a small number of very basic facts about my boy.

The first clip, which you can access by clicking on to the "play" button immediately below, is perhaps more for the purist and shows:
  1. Despite being a couple of months short of two years old, Jamie can actually kick a ball, and

  2. He's all left foot.

video

However, the second clip shows a definite and, I think, amusing aspect of his character i.e. he knows when he's had enough.

video

But clearly, I am biased.

Sunday, 25 April 2010

A toast to summer

"Three hot dogs!" was Jamie's original order at the beginning at yesterday's first White family barbecue of the 2010 season.

However, in the end, he only had a bit of one after the potato smiley things I bought at Asda - and which were cooked in the oven rather than on the barbecue - were found to hold greater attractions for him.

Still, he did decide it was an occasion worth raising a glass to. And even Jamie knows by now that I am always up for that.

Saturday, 24 April 2010

George and Jamie

The sun is shining in Yorkshire, it doesn't happen very often, so I'm going to try to keep this brief.

I'm sure no-one noticed, but I didn't update this dross yesterday because, after a morning and early afternoon of feeling increasingly dreadful, I ended up having to concede defeat and retire to my scratcher.

I haven't been in top form all week but, whatever it was/is in my system, decided to come back on Thursday night and reek havoc. However, I'm feeling much better today so it's onwards.

And yesterday was, of course, St George's Day so I hope all ye olde English gentlefolk out there took the opportunity to mark it appropriately.

Whilst I am proudly a quarter English myself - my grandfather hailed from Somerset - Jamie is obviously twice that proportion. It was therefore vital in my book that he played his full part in yesterday's planned St George's Day activities during a rare Friday visit to nursery.

I bought him a new patriotic tee shirt earlier in the week to coincide with the red and white colour theme.

And, over the course of his day, he made a St George's Cross hat, drew pictures of the great man fighting a dragon and finished off with a traditional English afternoon tea of cucumber sandwiches and scones.

Meanwhile in Bradford (prior to falling off my perch), this was the scene outside my office window.

For the second year in a row, the city hosted a terrific St George's Day parade in Centenary Square with local school children from across the district - most of whom had made their own St George's flags - the focal point of proceedings.

In the many years I've lived on this side of "the water," I've often heard it said that St George's Day should be celebrated in the same enthusiastic manner that the Irish (and pretend Irish) celebrate St Paddy, and quite right too. Thankfully, I believe that moment is now getting ever closer. Public holiday anyone?

Thursday, 22 April 2010

Song choice is all-important


We've all, no doubt, been to concerts where the band or singer in question hasn't played a particular song or songs we've come to hear, or finished on something a bit useless and sent us home a bit flat.

And we all, I hope, have also been to gigs where the act has ended on something magnificent and dispatched all patrons on a high.

Well, last night I attempted to finish my own personal gig with a crowd favourite. But unfortunately, I made the wrong call.

The "gig" in question was in Jamie's bedroom and the "crowd" was Jamie. The time? Bedtime.

Vanessa was out so I was attempting to put him down, but he wasn't for having it. So, I tried a tactic I've used before to very good effect; I burst into The Wild Rover.

The Wild Rover is one of the few songs I know from start to finish. And the reason it seems to work is that I think he reckons it a much better idea to be asleep than to listen to me singing it.

Last night, I was singing away and he was drifting off - but he hadn't quite gone.

It was at this point that I allowed myself to be swept away by the moment and made the wrong call.

Because rather than sing The Wild Rover a third time and get the result I was after, I launched into the Postman Pat theme song.

Suddenly, Lazarus arose.

The arms went in the air, the eyes opened, the huge smile appeared and the chant began:

"Hi-ya Pat Pat!!! Hi-ya Pat Pat!!! PAT!!! PAT!!! PAT!!!!!!!!"

Bugger.

I quickly went back to The Wild Rover, but the damage was done and it was a full half hour before I finally got him off to sleep.

Unsurprisingly, my intimate gig set list will return to my one "trademark" song from now on.

Wednesday, 21 April 2010

Looks can deceive


Brat Boy's been playing up.

He slept better than normal last night (not that I would have noticed if he hadn't) but this morning the problems began.

He wanted his milk, then he didn't, then he really, REALLY did.

The telly didn't suit. Why did he have to watch Teletubbies when everyone should know that Peppa Pig is his current favourite programme and he should have the ability to watch it at any moment of his choosing?

But no, he had changed his mind. He wanted to watch Roary The Racing Car - why was Roary not on?

Then Roary the Racing Car miraculously appeared on the screen.

"NO!" came the pained cry. "Peppa! Peppa! PEPPA!!!"

Next, why did he have to wear trousers? And as for shoes - he didn't WANT to wear shoes.

And if Daddy thought he was going to be allowed to brush Jamie's hair, well, Daddy would just have to go away and think again.

Eventually, after 45 minutes of "fun and games," I deposited him at nursery.

And ironically, it was at nursery, a few weeks ago, that a few professional snaps were taken by a local photographer and we ordered some. The results of his efforts have since come back and here you can see two examples.

And they say the camera never lies?

Tuesday, 20 April 2010

My sicky-bokey early warning system

It's been a rough old 24 hours. Let me explain.

Around about this time last night, I finished up writing my daily dose of rubbish here before thinking about heading downstairs for dinner.

And, all of a sudden, I started to feel a bit queasy. Nothing dramatic, just not great.

It was Vanessa's turn in the kitchen and she arrived shortly afterwards with a plateful of prawns and noodles in a spicy tomato sauce. It was one of her newest creations but I'd had it twice before in recent weeks and liked it. So I began to eat.

But the more I ate, the more sickly I felt although, ever the trooper (what?!) I kept going until my plate was clear.

About half an hour passed by and I didn't feel any better so decided to go to bed. But I wasn't there for long.

Because, within a few minutes, I had my head down the bog barfing my ring up (or, to translate for those of you not fortunate enough to come from the fair Province of Ulster, I was "violently ill").

And I repeated the trick again a short time later.

What then lay ahead was a night of almost no sleep and a feeling of awfulness, particularly at around 3am when Jamie started playing up.

Despite all of this, I did go to work today but am looking forward to a proper snooze tonight.

However, a question remains in my tiny little mind. If it wasn't the food that made me barf - Vanessa was fine after eating the same meal - what did?

The only answer I can think of is that my body (wrongly) preempted that it wouldn't like what was about to be shoved into it, feared it was going to be ill and decided to get the whole thing out of the way as quickly as possible - hence it forced me to feel sick before I had actually eaten anything.

A sicky-bokey early warning system, if you will.

Or I could be totally wrong.

Or I might have just have nothing better to write about tonight.

Monday, 19 April 2010

Why did Adrian turn his back on Christine?

If, like me, you're into your trivia and prone to wasting away dangerously large chunks of your life in front of the telly, you'll know that The One Show host Adrian Chiles has today announced he's flouncing out of the BBC in a fit of pique.

But what is the real reason for his impromptu departure?

Is it because Chris Evans has nicked his job on Fridays, as he's hinted?

Or because Christine Bleakley won't make him breakfast in the morning?

If only he could be Frank, sorry, frank.

Sunday, 18 April 2010

Tough love

The Whites spent this morning at the Eureka children's museum in Halifax, an outstanding facility and well worth a trip if you've got kids and live in t'Yorkshire.

Two particular highlights for me.

First, was Vanessa turning the cute electronic picture of Jamie you can see above - into this.

And the second was me scaring the bejeezus out of him by pretending to be a giant mouse.

But we love him, really.

Saturday, 17 April 2010

SHE GOT OFF! (I think)

In a White Stuff exclusive (guess), I can reveal that Coronation Street's Gail Tilsley-Platt-McIntyre (possibly) gets acquitted of murdering her husband Joe in Bradford's trial of the week.

Yesterday was the last day of filming at Bradford City Hall/"Weatherfield Crown Court."

And, in the picture above, you can see Gail rushing to a waiting car after the verdict was announced. Also in the scene - which I bizarrely managed to capture during my lunch hour - are Audrey, David, the latest bloke to play Nick, Norris's woman and a number of extras pretending to be members of a hungry press pack. All very exciting.

But I have another picture, taken during a break in filming, which may or may not be as exciting. And here it is.

In the middle wearing the bright dress - let's call it "apricot" - is Michelle Keegan who plays Tina McIntyre. And keeping her "warm" - on what was already quite a balmy afternoon - is Ryan Thomas who plays Jason Grimshaw. This is the same Ryan Thomas who had a high profile relationship with Tina O'Brien who played Sarah Platt in Corrie (and who I think is coming back). So Mr Thomas has "form." And if the body language I witnessed yesterday is anything to go by, I reckon he's very keen to get his chisel out once again (think bedpost). Anyway, you read it first on this blog.

Before I go, here's a photo of a very different kind - Jamie in his pyjamas and wellies shortly after seven o'clock this morning.

Sometimes it's just important to get out.

Friday, 16 April 2010

Well done Mr Cheese...erm...Clegg

Last night's "historic televisual event" in which David Cameron, Gordon Brown and Nick Clegg were interviewed for "the most exciting job in Britain" was much more interesting than many pundits predicted.

And, also against expectations, it led to a clear outcome with Nick Clegg almost universally declared the victor.

So congratulations to him.

He is indeed the new host of Wheel of Fortune. How appropriate.

Thursday, 15 April 2010

Taxi for...

Barlow!

Yes, it really is Coronation Street's Ken and Deirdre.

They've been filming Gail Tilsey-Platt-McIntyre's trial in Bradford City Hall/"Weatherfield Crown Court" for the last 10 days, and yesterday afternoon I managed to capture the moment the Barlows arrived for the verdict in Steve McDonald's cab.

And, after this particular scene, Anne Kirkbride - who plays Deirdre - came back out for a cheeky fag.

Before chucking the butt into that flowerbed on the left of picture.

You can take them out of Manchester...

Wednesday, 14 April 2010

"Son, your father's an idiot"

I've just had a brief dad-to-sprog conversation with Jamie as I carried him over to nursery.

Well, it was more of a warning in truth.

And the crux of what I had to say was very simple:

"Son, your father's an idiot."

My confession relates back to yesterday morning and my decision to cook some bacon under the grill.

I proceeded to eat the aforementioned bacon in a muffin and it was very pleasant, thanks.

But it was about an hour later, when I was at work, that the problem became clear. Because I suddenly realised that I'd forgotten to turn the grill off.

Bugger.

So, what to do?

I had a meeting about half an hour later, so should I wait until after that?

No, I concluded, our house might be a crisp by then. I had to get home.

So I grabbed my jacket and shouted to the others in my office that I was off to quickly catch the train home and back, stopping only briefly to extinguish the grill.

But my extremely kind colleague Marie would have none of it - she was going to drive me home, and that was that.

Marie got her coat too, we ran across the car park, jumped in Marie's car and sped down the Leeds Road in the direction of my grill.

A little more than 10 minutes later we arrived.

I jumped out of the car, burst through my front door and leapt across the kitchen towards the grill.

Which was switched off.

Jamie's father's an idiot.

Tuesday, 13 April 2010

Accident prone dad


I'm having a bad run on the old personal health and safety front.

In the last eight days, I've walked into two doors, cut my head on a mantelpiece, burnt my hand on a light bulb, bruised my leg on a desk and split one of my two typing fingers on a crab.

And now I've done something - possibly termina , who knows - to my right shoulder.

I've had a bit of pain there for a few weeks, but nothing I couldn't cope with (tough as nice, new, shiny boots, I am). But the shoulder has seized up during each of the last two nights, making it almost impossible to get out of bed the next morning - and that task has never been easy.

So what to do?

In theory, I should be able to see my doctor, get referred to a hospital physio and have the problem fixed. But I don't fancy waiting six months for that process to play itself out.

I therefore have little choice but to phone a local physio and invite him to mug me as well as cause me unspeakable pain "for my own good."

Excellent.

Monday, 12 April 2010

And then there was light…

Isn’t it lovely?

Isn’t it, like, all bright and shining?

Yes, yes and yes, I think you’ll agree.

But what is it, exactly?

Well, it’s our big garden light.

And what makes it so special?

Answer: it’s that this particular light – or rather, the bulb in it which blew up - hasn’t worked since September 2008.

I did buy a new bulb a few days after the original incident but managed to wreck the screw which you had to remove to get at the old one. And since then, not just me,but also Jamie’s Grandads Mike and Derek have had a multitude of goes between us at trying to hacksaw through the screw. But all to no avail.

Until yesterday, that was, when I tried out a new hacksaw blade and BINGO! The light fell open.

I was all pleased for a good three minutes until I realised I had absolutely no idea where I’d put the replacement bulb for “safe-keeping” almost 20 months ago. And, an hour and a half later and despite summoning extra help from Vanessa (who had clearly hidden it deliberately), I was no further forward. In fact, I was a long way back and occasionally sweary.

But all’s well that ends well. I bought another new bulb at lunchtime today, eventually got it in after around half an hour tonight - suffering only one burnt hand. And, quite literally, I now have a new light in my life.

I hope you’re as pleased for me as I am for myself.

Bring on the dark nights!!!

Oh, hold on…

PS Have you spotted the random spanner clamped onto the top of the light? That's my attempt at "improvisation." Perhaps more on that another time

Sunday, 11 April 2010

Single White male

Day two of the first sunny weekend of the year and, somewhat out of character, I've been trying to put the dry weather to good use in the garden.

Yesterday, for example, I cut the grass (I can tell you're impressed) and even had a go at laying some new turf (make your own mind up).

(OK, so you're not impressed).

And very shortly I'm going to reseed the remaining bare patches in the lawn and even attempt to fix our garden light (almost two years after the bulb went).

The only downside of proceedings thus far is the unwillingness of the "other" man of the house to so much as raise a finger to help.

Saturday, 10 April 2010

It's only money

Great disappointment in the White household this afternoon after none of the six horses we backed between us in the Grand National came anywhere near to placing, never mind crossing the line in front.

In fact, at least three of them fell and I think one of them is still running.

But it was pleasing that, in Tony McCoy, the winning jockey was an Ulsterman.

Jamie's already decided he wants to be just like him.

Sadly, I don't think chubby children are much good at being jockeys.

Friday, 9 April 2010

Too many ticket inspectors spoil my mood

Look closely at the picture above and you can see four - that's three plus another one - Northern Rail ticket inspectors standing at one of the two entrances to Pudsey station yesterday morning.

And below was the scene at entrance number two, about 25 yards away. You will note there are no ticket inspectors present.

So, being a little bored and having seen the exact same thing happen a couple of weeks ago, I enquired of one of the men in uniform as to why there were four of them at one entrance and none at the other.

"Health and safety," he announced. "Our radios would be out of range down there."

"Right," I mulled, "25 yards away?"

"Yes," replied Bob Crow's double. "Plus, we would also be at increased risk of physical attack from the public. The public don't like buying tickets, see."

"And have you any idea why that might be?" I asked.

My new friend didn't respond, instead choosing to turn his back and leave me to walk down to the platform to wait for my train - which eventually turned up 17 minutes late.

I think I might have the answer to my last question.

Thursday, 8 April 2010

Fork off thief


I wrote here a couple of weeks ago that some bugger had nicked £60 from my current account in the form of an "emergency cash" withdrawal - and then NatWest had charged me an extra fiver for the privilege of being robbed. Good work boys and girls.

The matter was placed in the hands of the bank's fraud team and since then I haven't heard a peep. Well, it's only my money isn't it?

However, last night I discovered it had happened again, although this time the nice thief man had only taken £40. Oh, and then NatWest charged me another fiver just to improve my mood.

Apparently the cash was withdrawn using "my card" at around 1.10pm from a cash point in Keighley. The only thing was, my actual card was in my pocket in Bradford, a good 40 minute drive away.

Sadly, I don't possess the mind of a master criminal and therefore have absolutely no idea what is going on and how it's going on.

But I really would welcome five minutes stuck in a lift; just me, the individual who's stealing my dosh and a blunt plastic fork.

Wednesday, 7 April 2010

Mandy the Muppet


I'm sure many of you are already either bored, irritated or both with the General Election and the last thing you want is for me to keep going on about it too.

But one brief observation.

You may be aware that Peter Mandelson is running Labour's campaign. He's a man known for his mastery of the so-called "dark arts," which one might better describe as spreading lies and poison about political rivals, and bullying journalists, voters and anyone else who stands in his regal way when he gets half a chance.

Prior to his appointment as Business Secretary, he had been in two previous Labour Cabinets and both times he was forced to resign in disgrace.

His new job came with a peerage from Gordon Brown, meaning no-one voted for him.

And, as a lord, he is not entitled to vote at the General Election.

So, to summarise, he's a nasty piece of work, he's not standing in the election, he's not voting in the election and yet he's running around the country bad mouthing his political opponents and patronising the rest of us by telling us how to vote.

Wouldn't it be much better for Labour's chances if he were to get on a plane and join his mates Tony and Cherie Blair on their safari holiday which, according to the papers, has just got underway?

Tuesday, 6 April 2010

Vote Rodney

As I write, Her Majesty The Queen is counting down the minutes until Gordon Brown arrives to leave muddy footprints on her good carpet for one last time before the start of the General Election campaign proper.

And then, for a solid calendar month, we can look forward to wall-to-wall politicians: on our televisions, in our newspapers, in our town centres and - joy of joys - even on our doorsteps.

But, in amongst the thousands of candidates standing for the 650 seats up for grabs, I ask you to look out for just one.

My mate Rodney McCune.

Rodney and I first met in the late 1990s when I was employed by the Ulster Unionists in Westminster and he was doing a bit of work experience with us whilst at law school in London.

Since then, he was become a very successful barrister and, as the Ulster Unionist candidate in North Antrim at the 2005 General Election, took 6,637 votes off that nasty old b*stard Ian Paisley.

This time, Rodney has been selected to stand as the joint Conservative and Unionist candidate in East Antrim.

And the contest will be unique as the constituency is currently represented in Parliament by Ulster's only living Troll, Sammy Wilson, who also serves as the part-time Finance Minister in the Northern Ireland Executive.

Sammy's regards himself as a "funny man" and he's certainly that but, sadly for him, in a clown rather than a joker type way.

He also has what could be loosely termed "arse and elbow recognition problems."

For example, the respected political website They Work for You describes his voting record in the House of Commons as "a mixture of for and against a transparent Parliament." A man of deep principle then.

So that's the battle in East Antrim.

I'll keep you informed between now and polling day on how it's going. And let's hope Rodney does it (obviously).

Monday, 5 April 2010

Piles of reasons to celebrate

In common with millions of other families across the country yesterday, we too had an extended Easter Sunday get together, in our case at Vanessa's mum's.

And the bash had the two key elements included: lots of kids...

...and lots of chocolate.

And there was an added reason for wild celebrations. Because Dagenham Dave - pictured below sporting his characteristic blank stare - had just got the all-clear on his piles.

Grudging congratulations to him (but "haste ye back" to his absent friends. Oh, please).

Sunday, 4 April 2010

I hope YOU stayed in bed

I'm just back from what I thought would be a nice, easy-paced 10k trot around the Leeds suburb of Guiseley.

But instead it turned out to be an hour of literally running through mud, up hills, through trees, over bridges, up some more hills, through some more mud - you get the idea.

And why?

For a "free" bottle of beer (notwithstanding the £9 entry fee), specially brewed and named after the event itself, the Guiseley Gallop.

But never, ever again (probably).

However, whilst my lame effort brought shame and embarrassment on my hometown of Coleraine and everyone who lives there, my old friend Paul "Merv" Gaile did exactly the opposite.

Also fortunate enough to hail from the banks of the Bann, Paul is known in the trade as a "proper" runner and proved it once again with a terrific eighth place and a finish time more than 20 minutes quicker than mine.

Speaking to him after the race, he said he was off to devour an entire Easter egg following a month off chocolate. But unlike me, he'll certainly have earned it.

PS Do you know what the really bad thing about this morning's run was? I could not get "Beautiful" by James ****ing Blunt out of my head. I don't know how it gone in there in the first place - I've told it before that it's definitely not welcome - but it managed to slip through security and then refused to leave. In fact, writing this has just allowed it to break back in. There nothing else for it, I'm off to call the police. Oh, and Happy Easter.