Friday, 24 October 2008

On a mission

If I do nothing else this weekend I have to sort out the central heating. As previously mentioned now being in my mid to late thirties it's time for me to worry about such things as insulation. Have bought the necessary equipment to venture down into the cellar however so far the motivation to do it has not been forthcoming.

So this evening, I know it's a Friday, I Jon Cuthill will be playing with my pipes. It's a truly sad state of affairs that it's come to this. Fridays should be fun. At no point should the words central, heating, pipes or lagging feature in anybody's Friday. But tonight is the night.

Rest of the weekend looks like a spot of surfing (haven't checked forecast yet but there might be a bit about if the wind picks up), I think I'm going bowling (am rubbish but haven't been for years so may have unwittingly developed skill) and am working Saturday night with a group of ghost watchers. Can't say I believe I'm going to see anything but they seem like a fun lot so should be a giggle. Apparently everyone's taking cake.

Which is a good start.

Have a great weekend. See you Monday.

So here's the joke ...

A woman walked into the kitchen to find her husband stalking around with a fly swatter.

'What are you doing?' she asked.

'Hunting Flies,' he responded.

'Oh ! Killing any?' she asked.

'Yep, 3 males, 2 Females,' he replied.

Intrigued, she asked. 'How can you tell them apart?'

"Well ..., " he replies, " 3 were on a beer can and 2 were on the phone."

Mental Maths (with a Friday twist). Wasn't so much the maths today that was the problem so much as working out what the actual numbers were. Still - lots of right answers ....


A bakers dozen
plus a brace
add a score
take off the value of the green ball in snooker
divide by the number of turtle doves (12 days of xmas)
add in cockney terms a pony
add a a quarter of a century ...


Thursday, 23 October 2008

Where is the love?

This morning really reminded me of skiing.

Saying that I've never tried it. I'm a snowboarder and from day one as a boarder you're taught to be naturally suspicious of skiers. It may be the pastel all in one jumpsuits, it could be the head bands, it may even be the way they do a silly little jump turn as they plant a pole with their knees together and their bum sticking out.

Anyway whatever it is it's best to leave them well alone.

Today the cyclists and the motorists got stuck into each other over who was more of a menace on the roads. The pedal pushers claimed the drivers were giving them no respect, that they were being pushed off the road and that they're all inconsiderate and forget once they were on a pushbike too. The drivers were shouting back lights would be good at night, that red lights mean stop even for bikers and that they should get off the pavements.

I got the feeling they're never going to like each other but they may just one day learn to tolerate each other.

Why not one day everyone swap? All the motorists get on a bike. All the cyclists take a car.

I doubt it would solve anything but it would be bloody good fun and I bet a lot quicker to get into work.

So here's the joke ...

Some race horses staying in a stable. One of them starts to boast about his track record. "In the last 15 races, I've won 8 of them!"

Another horse breaks in, "Well in the last 27 races, I've won 19!!"

"Oh that's good, but in the last 36 races, I've won 28!", says another, flicking his tail.

At this point, they notice that a greyhound dog has been sitting there listening. "I don't mean to boast," says the greyhound, "but in my last 90 races, I've won 88 of them!"

The horses are clearly amazed. "Wow!" says one, after a hushed silence.

"A talking dog!!!"

I went soft on you today for Mental Maths but well done if you got a gold star. Even if you're fairly sure it takes nerves of steel to hand it in. Tomorrow comes the twist. Enjoy today.


times 9
take off 8
minus 7
add 6
add 5
add 4
divided 3
divided by 2


Wednesday, 22 October 2008

Bad timing

Timing has never been my strength. In fact thinking about it timing, or a lack of it, has often proved my downfall.

Today is a classic example. The lovely Kate Humble is due in (with Bill Oddie) to talk all things Autumn Watch. The sofa has been moved to Brownsea Island this time round so brace yourself for endless pictures of badgers, flappy things (birds I believe) and anything that dare move and/or look slightly alive.

Anyway - have never met her - but there are some people in life who you just think would be lovely if you ever did meet them. Kate Humble being a fine example. She seems to be the perfect girl to sit and watch a badger with - and to be fair - there aren't many people you can say that about.

The upshot of it is that just as I go she's due in and so like ships of the night we will never meet.

Mind you so far at no point in my life have I had the slightest inclination to sit in the dark on a damp patch of grass watching a fairly small, grey, slightly odd looking hairy thing.

But enough about Bill Oddie.

So here's the joke ...

Shakespeare has had a really hard day at the office. Not only was he trying to get over a small bout of writers block but his new secretary had just advised him she was pregnant and he knew that finding a temp was going to be time consuming and expensive.

As he left the office he should really have gone straight back to his wife, as they had friends coming for dinner, but he needed some down time.

So, to unwind, he drops into his local tavern on his way home. He walks quickly up the bar and says "A jar of your finest mead, please, bartender".

But the Inn Keeper replies "Get out. You're bard."

Mental Maths time and back to a more straight forward sum for you today. Lots of you liked the twist yesterday so get ready for more of that to come. First though here's today's.

Time for Mental Maths - proving the South can still add up without using a calculator or pen and paper ....


add 38
divided by 5
times 4
subtract 17
add 6
take off 21
treble it
and give me 20 percent of that ....


Tuesday, 21 October 2008

Warning: boring entry do not read

To be fair even Keith Richards must have the odd day when life doesn't quite seem too rock'n'roll.

Surely he can't always be driving a Rolls Royce into the hotel swimming pool. Occasionally he must actually want to watch tv instead of throwing it out of the window. (Mind you if Anne Robinson is on he may have a point.)

Anyway I feel I need to apologise for today's entry as I am about to bore you rigid with a story about lagging and central heating pipes. Please feel free to go back to Google and type "there must be something more interesting than that" into the search engine.

The fact of the matter is that it is now officially mid winter(ish). The central heating is now burning hotter than the sun in a hopeless bid to bring the temperature of my draughty old house above freezing. And I hear that gas is getting rather pricey these days.

For the past 5 years my central heating appears to have been heating the basement more efficiently that the house. Correct me if I'm wrong but I thought heat always rises? Apparently not - apparently heat always rises unless it's in Jon's cellar in which case it will stay there until the summer. I've actually seen mice taking tiny towels down to the basement for their daily sauna - sat next to the thimble of water just in case it gets too hot which is probably will.

Sorry rodents - but you've had your last hot tub. For tonight I am off to buy lagging. This evening I will be lagging anything that looks remotely like a pipe.

Duck tape and insulation - that's all you need for one crazy night in.

Move over Keith.

So here's the joke ...

Bob was in trouble. He forgot his wedding anniversary. His wife was really cross. She told him "Tomorrow morning, I expect to find a gift in the driveway that goes from 0 to 200 in 6 seconds AND IT BETTER BE THERE !!"

The next morning he got up early and left for work. When his wife woke up, she looked out the window and sure enough there was a box gift-wrapped in the middle of the driveway.
Confused, the wife put on her robe and ran out to the driveway, brought the box back in the house.

She opened it and finds .... a set of bathroom scales. Bob hasn't been seen since.

Mental Maths and here's the twist. Weirdly it was the texters who struggled today. Apparently it was the months that caught everyone out.


a dozen
times the number of days in a week
take off half a century
halve that
take away number of months beginning with J
add the number of letters in the alphabet
In Roman Terms take off X
double that
take off the value of a green ball in snooker .....


Monday, 20 October 2008

Feeling a little horse ....

No need to call the animal welfare authorities - just a simple typo.

Horse as in hoarse as in sore throat. Now I don't want to start sounding like a pathetic man all of a sudden (no change there) but this tonsillitis (self diagnosed - I have internet access) is really starting to get a big boring. It's stopping me from doing my two favourite things - talking and eating.

Everyday I wake up hoping that today will be the day I can sing Pavarotti and eat crusty bread only to find my hopes dashed. At this point I have to confess I have never had a huge urge to sing Pavarotti and/or eat crusty bread - but just in case - I'd like the option to be there.

In the meantime it's back to humming and ice cream - which to be fair isn't all that bad.

Still at least the later starts now mean a bit of a lie in. It all feels a little bid odd at the moment - just like the day after the clocks change - which incidentally they must do soon.

Now that's going to feel really weird.

So here's the joke (which I forgot to do ....)

An elderly lady receives an e-mail from the son of a deceased (but wealthy) African general, asking whether he could transfer millions of pounds into her bank account in return for a 20% cut.

All the son needs is the sort code and account number. Not realising she is the victim of a Nigerian 419 fraud, she e-mails back the details.

A couple of minutes later she receives an e-mail back from the general's son.

"Landisbanki? What do you think I am - stupid?!"

Mental Maths and the supply teacher has been hard at work with this one. Most people got it spot on but there were a few miscounts along the way. Tomorrow's MM is slightly different so you'll need to be on your toes ....


Minus 50
Minus 10
Multiply by 2
Three quarters of that
Third of that
Half of that
A tenth of that
add 9
multiply by 10


Wednesday, 15 October 2008

Read letter day

It's just occurred to me I haven't actually written anything for ages.

Yes I dribble on with this blog everyday but it's not proper writing. Proper writing involves a pen, paper, an envelope and an address. When was the last time you actually wrote a handwritten letter to someone?

I don't think we do it enough. It's all emails, texts and msn messenger. There's something very special about getting a personal letter that someone has taken the time to write you (unless it's in crayon - and then you just worry and/or call the police.)

So today my challenge to everyone is to write one handwritten letter to someone. Perhaps someone you haven't spoken to for years or perhaps someone who you've just spoken to just a moment ago. Anyone - but you have to write it by hand.

I reckon it would make their day.

So here's the joke ...

A man and a woman who have never met before find themselves in the same sleeping carriage of a train. After the initial embarrassment they both go to sleep, the woman on the top bunk, the man on the lower.

In the middle of the night the woman leans over, wakes the man and says, "I'm sorry to bother you, but I'm awfully cold and I was wondering if you could possibly get me another blanket."

The man leans out and, with a glint in his eye, says, "I've got a better idea... just for tonight, let's pretend we're married."

The woman thinks for a moment. "Why not?" she giggles.

"Great," he replies, "Get your own damn blanket!"

Mental Maths time and controversy reigned supreme with this one. If you turn a six upside down what does it become?


plus 18
add 29
halve it
divided by 7
times 9
take off 27
divided by 3
turn it upside down


Tuesday, 14 October 2008

Just say yes ...

It's a whole lot easier. Just say yes.

Don't say no. Don't say it won't work. Don't say but surely .... Don't say anything - just say yes.

I'm going to try it. It may not work but life could be easier, won't it?

(Answer is yes, obviously)

So here's the joke ...

Once upon a time God decides the world needs another flood. He gets on the phone to Noah and advises that he and his family prepare themselves.

"Same as last time? Usual ark?" asks Noah.

"No," replies God. "Not the usual one - I want you to design me a really tall ark with lots of decks."

"Oh - ok, fair enough," says Noah. "Two by two - same as last time?"

"Nope," replies God. "Can you fill it purely with fish this time - carp I think."

And so Noah builds a very tall ark and fills it with the requested type of fish - of every size shape and colour. Good to His word the rains come and the great flood washes over the earth. After weeks afloat the waters subside and Noah, his family and his fish survive.

"One thing I have to know, God" says Noah. "What was the fish thing all about?"

"Oh," says God. "I just fancied a multi storey carp ark."

Mental Maths times and this was a good 'un. No idea why but it seemed to get a lot of both right and wrong answers. If you got it wrong here's what happened.


add 6
divided 7
times 9
take away 15
divided by 8
square it
take off 17
minus 8


Monday, 13 October 2008

And they're orf ...

OK - so after the whole "if it's not cruel why do the jockeys have whips?" thing was out of the way I did actually enjoy it. What helped was the fact is was a beautiful day and Goodwood on a beautiful day is truly spectacular. And a beautiful day is always helped by a beautiful pint. Everything in moderation, of course.

Granted I came away down on the day but I'd like to think that was a protest at the whipping however it was actually due to my complete lack of knowledge and experimental betting system.

Now whilst some people may rely on form, gate and condition of the horse I decided to judge where my money should go purely on the stable girl leading the nag around the paddock. At this point I have to admit to having to seek permission from Jemma for my rather unique way of picking my bets however once successfully negotiated it proved a very entertaining method.

There were a couple of misunderstandings at my comments about the state of backsides, legs and teeth however for legal reasons I have to point out in each case I was actually talking about the horse itself.

Anyway to cut a very long and uninteresting story short it didn't work. This may come as a shock to but if you don't look at the actual horse you're betting on you're more than likely not to win.

I did win 16 quid on an each way bet which came in third.

It had lovely legs.

(The horse)

So here's the joke ...

Two lobsters were sunbathing on the beach.

The girl lobster suggested that the boy lobster go get them an ice cream cone.

Having purchased two cones, Mr Lobster made his way back to the beach, deciding on the way to eat his ice cream. By the time he had finished the ice cream, he realised that his girlfriend's had started to melt all down his claw, so he licked it up and ended up eating it too.

When he arrived back at the beach Ms Lobster exclaimed "Where's my ice cream cone?

"Well", he said. "I decided to eat mine, then yours melted so I ate that too."

Mrs Lobster was incensed.

"You shellfish bugger."

Mental Maths and all fairly straight forward today. Bumper turn out for the maths lesson but a few of you slipped up so here's the problem.


plus 27
take off 17
add 34
double it
minus 40
halve it
take off 6
divided by 5


Friday, 10 October 2008

Weekend plans

So that's another week then.

Highlights included my winking research establishing there is no connection between the eye you find it easier to wink with and the hand you write with. Also I'm now on MyFace Spacebook or whatever it's called so have join the Appreciation Society. No idea what happens now but you've got to be in it to win it.

Off to Goodwood for the weekend. Living it up on Saturday and watching the racing on Sunday. Can't say I'm massively into horse racing but it makes a bit of a change, doesn't it? Will no doubt have the usual arguments with the racing fraternity about whips and the question whether they really enjoy running around with a wee man on their backs?

Charlie was banging on about putting something on a nag with a reference to white in it's name. She's convinced it will win.

Although not quite convinced enough to put a tenner on it.

So here's the joke ...

Once upon a time there were two little skunks named "In" and "Out." They lived in a hollow tree with their mother. Sometime In and Out played outside, but other times they played inside. One day In was out and Out was in. Mother skunk told Out to go out and bring In in. So Out went out and in a few minutes he came in with In.

"My my, Out," she said, "How did you find In so quickly?"

Out just smiled and said "Instinct."

Mental Maths time and a clean sweep by class mates on the phones and email today. Sadly a couple of texters got it wrong so here it is ...


give me 25 percent of that
times 12
50 percent of that
divided by 5
add 19
minus 24
times itself
treble it


Thursday, 9 October 2008

It's all coming out now ...

The plot thickens.

Now I've always thought all local councils were short of cash. There are the usual rounds of apologies as Council Tax is put up. The normal rounds of Chief Executives complaining about a lack of government funding. The normal excuses when local services don't their job "if only we had the money we so desperately need ...."

But here's the funny thing.

Now the Icelandic Banking system appears to be up the swanney (correct financial term) organisations have spent today admitting exactly how much money they did have invested in the country's banks. And whilst I have a whole load of sympathy for places such as Naomi House who've been caught up in the madness of world economics my sympathy starts to fail ever so slightly when local councils admit they had millions of pounds stashed away.

Now I have to make it absolutely clear that I'm no accountant and I'm sure there are some very good reasons why a council is putting millions and millions into various Icelandic accounts. And I have to make it absolutely clear I have no idea whatsoever about the ins and outs of local authority funding. I'm sure it's very complicated and beyond a simpleton like me.

But hands up who'll open their council tax bill with a wry smile.

So here's the joke ...

A farmer needs a bull to service his cows but needs to borrow the money from the bank. The bank manager who lent the money comes by a week later to see how his investment is doing.
The farmer complains that the bull just eats grass and won't even look at the cows. The bank manager suggests that a vet takes a look at the bull.

The next week the banker returns to see if the vet helped. The farmer looks very pleased: "The bull has serviced all my cows, broke through the fence, and has serviced all of my neighbour's cows."

"Wow," says the banker. "What did the vet do to that bull?"

"Just gave him some pills," replied the farmer.

"What kind of pills?" asked the banker.

"I don't know," said the farmer. "They taste kind of chocolatey ...."

Mental Maths and here's the puzzle from today. Remember no pens or paper. Follow it all in your noggin' and see if you arrive at the answer.


times 7
plus 19
divided by 5
add 27
divided by 7
times 12
take off 36
and give me two thirds of that ....


Wednesday, 8 October 2008


So Gordon Brown has decided to bail out the banks to the tune of £50 billion.

Now I'm no economic genius and I suppose at times like these you just have to trust the people in charge but it's made me a little bit cross and I'm not sure why.

Perhaps it's because the £50 billion is apparently tax payers money. So a rough calculation is, what, about 30 million people working in the UK? So that's 30 million hopefully paying tax. So 50 billion divided by 30 million is ... er ... 1.6 million pounds?!?!?! Hold on that can't be right. How many 0's in a billion? It's a million, million. So that's 12 0's.

Now please check my maths someone as according to that the government, on my behalf, has just put down 1.6 million pounds of my taxes.


A couple of questions spring to mind ....

1) Have I been paying too much tax?
2) Can I pay it back in installments?
3) If it all goes horribly wrong and the banking bail out doesn't work - do I owe someone 1.6 million quid?!

The other question is - if there's now 1.6 million pounds of my own money knocking around the banking system does that mean it's easier for me to borrow a couple of thousand for a basement conversion?

Come to think of it - loan?! What am I talking about - they owe me! I'd like it in 10 pence pieces please - no fifties.

So here's the joke ...

After Quasimodo dies, the deacon advertises for his replacement. After many fruitless weeks, a mysterious stranger enters the church and enquires about the job.

The deacon directs him towards the bell rope. However, instead of using the rope, the stranger goes up to the bell tower and starts nutting the bell with his head.

It produces a wonderful, sonorous tone and deacon hires him on the spot. In his joy, the man has a heart attack and drops dead.

When the police arrive, the deacon is asked who the man is.

"Dunno," says the deacon. "But his face rings a bell."

Mental maths time and unbelievably it all seemed to work today despite me getting the question wrong. Well done if you got it right - here's what happened if you got it wrong.


add 38
double it
take away 37
plus 3
add 39
minus 27


Tuesday, 7 October 2008

In the dark

OK so as you know by now Monday night is football night.

Another distinctly average performance which resulted in a solitary goal and not much running around. So I get home thinking I need to make little more of an effort on the pitch ie actually run around more than the absolute bare minimum (although to be fair I am 37).

Anyway I get home and out of nowhere the thought comes "Why don't you go for a run?"

It's half past ten at night, it's pitch black, I am wearing mainly black (no I'm not the ref) and my brain is trying to get my body out for a run!?!?! Am worried this may be a flash of mid life crisis but unbelievably my body went with my brain and off I went.

To be fair I did quite enjoy it but, and this may surprise you, I appeared to be the only runner pounding the streets at 11pm. There are pro's and con's to the late night run. A plus is the lack of traffic at junctions which means less stopping and starting. A minus are the people post pub who tend to weave on the pavements making judging a (low speed) pass quite tricky.

Oh as for the wearing black in the dark whilst running that is a particularly foolish thing to do.

Apologies to the cyclist whom I seemed to take entirely by surprise.

So here's the joke ...

A salesman was driving his car and his boss rang up, and said 'You've been promoted.' He swerved.

And then he rang up a second time and said "You've been promoted again." He swerved again.

He rang up a third time and said 'You're a managing director." And the man crashed as he swerved into a tree.

The policeman came up and said 'What happened to you?' And he said "I careered off the road."

No mental maths today due to footy coverage. Back tomorrow maths fans.

Monday, 6 October 2008

A lesson in perspective

Big things apparently look smaller the further away they are.

It's not new - it's even got a name. Perspective.

However every now and again I forget. And so there I was on Boscombe seafront with surf board surveying the now shifting horizon (that possibly should have been the clue) OK so it was a little bit windy and OK it was a little bit rainy. Perhaps the fact the rain didn't actually land and was travelling horizontally should have been clue 2.

Anyway in I pop skipping through the surf. Wallop! Back I go to the beach. Next I try a slightly more assertive run into the waves. Wallop! Again I arrive back on beach. And so it went on for the next hour. Every time I tried to go out a rather huge wave would quickly assist me back to the beach.

Now I know what you thinking - surely, Jon, that's the basic principal of surfing. You go out and then come back in. However am finally sure one of the rules of surfing is that when you come back you should be on or at least in the near proximity of your board.

I wasn't.

Am walking slightly like John Wayne today but am sure it'll all heal. They may even grow back.

PS Note no mention of my serious man flu condition despite my suffering.
PPS If I make it through will write again soon.

So here's the joke ...

A young pet monkey had an accident and needed a brain transplant. The veterinarian told the monkey's human family, "Brains are very expensive, and you will have to pay the cost yourselves."

"Well, how much does a brain cost?" asked the family.

"For a male brain, £300,000. For a female brain, £100,000," replied the vet.

All the men in the family nodded because they thought they understood. But the mother was unsatisfied and asked, "Why the difference in price between male and female brains?"

The vet replied "That's because the female brain has actually been used."

Mental Maths and the supply teacher set this one. Some of you liked it others struggled a bit with all the taking away. And it's nasty numbers for subtraction.


Minus 37
Minus 7
Minus 37
Minus 7
Multiplied by 12
Minus 44
Minus 37
Minus 7


Thursday, 2 October 2008

Pain in the neck

Today I need to talk to you about the whole man doctor thing.

Suffice to say I am pretty bad at the whole responsible adult thing. Problem is I don't have a huge amount of responsibility in life and get distracted pretty much at or by the drop of a hat. To me the fun stuff seems slightly more important than most of the sensible stuff.

Anyway after what probably is far too long of putting up with headaches, bad nights sleep and general grumpiness I went to see the doctor about my neck. Everything was going fine until he asked me how long I'd had it for. That was when all of a sudden my "fun filled don't worry about the sensible stuff plan" didn't seem that clever.

I felt like a naughty school kid sat on a chair in the headmaster's office. Worse still was the follow up question - why exactly I hadn't come in earlier? And do you know what - I couldn't actually answer it.

Just did my best smile and shrugged. Did the whole comedy Wallace and Grommit I've-just-been-asked-a-tricky-question-that-I-can't-answer face.

Now it's not like my head is about to fall off or anything serious but it was a little bit of a wake up call. Have made a mental note to self to sort things out when they happen and not just keeping putting stuff off because it's easier to do nothing.

Apart from the washing up.

So here's the joke ...

Mummy mouse was getting food in the kitchen with her baby when the cat pounced in.

Snatching up the child mum ran for the mouse hole but it was obvious she wasn't going to make it.

Finally in desperation she whipped around and shouted "Bark, Bark" at the cat.

The cat skidded to a halt and ran away. Mummy mouse turned to her baby and said,

"Now do you see the benefits of learning a foreign language?"

MENTAL MATHS and this one caused a few problems today.


times 4
give me a third of that
times a half
times it's self
give me 2 sixths of that
take off 5
times 9
add the digits together ....


Tuesday, 30 September 2008

Snooze you lose

OK so here's the deal.

I am pretty rubbish at the whole getting up kind of thing. Now I'm sure there are some people who on only the second ping of their alarm clock are already out of bed, showering, having breakfast and chomping at the bit to get on with their day.

I on the other hand take a slightly more considered approach. And this is the problem.

The snooze button.

Snooze buttons ruin lives. It's a fact.

Don't be fooled into thinking you'll get more precious sleep by repeatedly hitting that button. You are just kidding yourself. Yes, technically you are in bed, but you will find yourself in a bewildering world of sleep and no sleep. It's the sleep equivalent of having a warm can of coke on a hot summers day. You know you've just taken liquid on board but somehow it didn't seem to quench your thirst.

Every five minutes bang! your arm's flapping like a giant beached tuna attempting to hit that button to send you back to a sleepless oblivion. Every five minutes you're snapped back to reality with a shudder trying to remember where you are and possibly more to the point who you are.

My theory is for every five minute snooze you take you lose what feels like an hour of regular sleep. All I'm saying is I hit that button so many times this morning it feels like I haven't slept for days.

Am starting a campaign group. Join me.

So here's the joke ...

A man was walking along a California beach and stumbled across an old lamp. He picked it up and rubbed it and out popped a genie. The genie said, "OK. You released me from the lamp, blah blah blah. This is the fourth time this month and I'm getting a little sick of these wishes so you can forget about three. You only get one wish!"

The man sat and thought about it for a while and said, "I've always wanted to go to Hawaii but I'm scared to fly and I get very seasick. Could you build me a bridge to Hawaii so I can drive over there to visit?"

The genie laughed and said, "That's impossible. Think of the logistics of that! How would the supports ever reach the bottom of the Pacific? Think of how much much steel, let alone the massive environmental impact!! No, think of another wish."

The man said OK , "I wish that I could understand women....know how they feel inside and what they're thinking when they give me the silent treatment....know how to make them truly happy."

"About that bridge," says the genie. "How many lanes do you want. Two or four?"
Mental Maths time and today's question caught a few of you out. Remember it's all done in your head - no writing anything down. See if you arrive at the correct answer.


take off 29
divided by 3
double it
add 24
reverse the digits
swap em back
add 6
divided by 4


Monday, 29 September 2008

London town and a working weekend

I know, I know but it's not because I don't love you.

I've been hob nobbing in London Town for the last couple of days. All good fun although the best bit of any course/conference does tend to be the beer afterwards. Some people call it networking. Either I'm not grown up enough to do that (that may explain the career) or I just prefer having fun (and beer as it turns out although sadly none of the beer was expense refundable.)

Anyway that was how last week ended. And then there was a 40th birthday party at the weekend - well 3 actually. A sort of combined 120th although it was one of those parties you go to where you don't actually know many/any of the people there and you spend most of the night thinking you'll get turfed out as a gatecrasher. Luckily I found out I could do 40th birthday small talk very well and a super fun time was had by all.

Meetings today, prerecords and general Monday stuff. Will be a bit on the hectic side this evening as I promised to go and see the Southampton Ukulele Jam tonight in Southampton (they are hilarious - it's basically people playing The Undertones and Talking Heads on ukuleles). Then it's on to Romsey for footy.

I may be the only one holding a ukulele wearing football shorts.

For some reason that sounds ruder than I meant.

So here's the joke ....

Bob was a farmer and was helping one of his cows give birth, when he noticed his 4-year-old son standing wide-eyed at the fence, taking in the whole event.

"Oh great...", thought Bob, "...he's only 4 and I'm gonna have to start explaining the birds and bees. No need to jump the gun - I'll just let him ask, and I'll answer."

After everything was over, Bob walked over to his son and asked, "Well son, do you have any questions?"

"Just one." gasped the still wide-eyed lad...

"How fast was that calf going when he ran into that cow?!!"

Mental Maths and the supply teacher set this one for the class today. Don't get too freaked out about the high numbers. It's all fairly straight forward for a Monday.


times ten
take away 4
divide by 3
take away 32
divide by 100
times 15
take away 8
times 3


Tuesday, 23 September 2008

Bedroom disaster

Was running around trying not to be late for Monday night's footie match in Winchester (which incidentally ended up a glorious 3-3 draw). Anyway rushed into the master bedroom in the west wing and whizzed the dimmer switch around to illuminate the boudoir.

Straight away I knew all was not right and so it was proven when I attempted to switch off the light to leave. The light would not turn off. At all. Despite numerous attempts of twisting, pushing, pulling and begging it to switch off it remained very much on.

And so it was four hours later that I found myself lying in bed in an extremely well lit bedroom attempting to go to sleep. Couldn't work out which fuse I should take out in the fuse box and all the bulbs were now nuclear hot and would melt even the sun itself.

All I'll say is I wouldn't recommend attempting a restful night under direct bulb light. My body clock has all gone to pot and currently I have no idea what time/day or even year it is. As I speak my bedroom remains very well lit. Apologies Al Gore.

Am off to B&Q after work today. It can't be that hard to change a switch, surely? Mind you if the traffic lights dim when you're driving home you'll know it was rather more complicated than I anticipated.

Well wear my marigolds and rubber wellies.

So here's the joke ...

An Elderly couple walk into a café. They order one beefburger, one portion of chips and one drink. The old man unwraps the beefburger and carefully cuts it in half. He places one half in front of his wife.

He then counts out the fries, divided them into two piles and placing one pile in front of his wife.
He takes a sip of the drink, then sets the cup down beside them. As he begins to eat his few bites of his beefburger, the people around start whispering: "That poor old couple- all they can afford is one meal for the two of them."

As the man begins to eat his chips a young man comes to the table. He offers to buy another meal for the old couple. The old man replies that they're just fine- they're just used to sharing everything. The other diners notice the old lady hasn't eaten a bite. She just sits there watching her husband eat and occasionally taking a sip of the drink.

Again the young man comes over and begs them to let him buy another meal for them. This time the old woman says: "No thank you, we are used to sharing everything."

As the old man finishes and wipes his face neatly with the napkin, the young man again comes over to the little lady and asks: "May I ask what you are waiting for?"

"The teeth."
And onto Mental Maths. Here is today's puzzle. Again quite straight forward but under pressure quite a few fell at a rather awkward subtraction hurdle ...


plus 14
times 4
divided by 2
take off 44
divided by 6
add 9
three quarters of that
times 3


Monday, 22 September 2008

Where've you been?

Well alright - it's more like where have I been?

To be fair I have been working very hard. I'm not whingeing - the boss never reads this but as well as the radio show I also do the odd bit of filming and last week it just went a bit bonkers. Loads of good stuff which you might end up seeing on the web or hearing on the radio. But it was the filming equivalent of buses - nothing for ages and then all of a sudden ... chaos.

So in between that I have made two purchases which should improve the quality of my life.

The first is a ukulele. Not any old ukulele but a flying V which I didn't think they made. (Picture in your head the sort of ukulele that ZZ Top would play and you're nearly there). Anyway having met the Southampton Ukulele Jam I've decided to learn and join the 40 strong membership of mass ranks of ukulele. Seems like a whole load of fun however my fingers do seem a little on the chubby side but am sure I could always go on a diet or exercise only my digits.

Therefore my second weekend purchase was an X-Box 360. To be fair I may be a little old for that sort of nonsense but I've been console free for nearly a year and I do miss it a bit. Rebecca has been telling me today that I am the perfect age for it.

I fear she may be saying I'm a tad childish but that's what producers are for.

Am thinking of combining the two - Ukulele Hero anyone?

So here's the joke ...

A man goes into a wine bar wearing a shirt open at the collar and is met by a bouncer who tells him he must wear a tie to gain admission. So the man goes out to his car and he looks around for a tie and discovers that he just doesn't have one. He sees a set of jumper leads in the boot.

In desperation he ties these around his neck, manages to fashion a fairly acceptable looking knot and lets the ends dangle free. He goes back to the restaurant and the bouncer carefully looks him over for a few minutes and then says ....

"In you go - but don't start anything."

Mental Maths time and after your online week off here's today's puzzle. Fairly straight forward this one - follow it through and see if you arrive at the correct answer.


two thirds of that
double it
a quarter of that
times itself
double that
take away 19
plus 2
divided by 9 ...


Monday, 15 September 2008

The issue that won't go away

OK ok ok - I know I've gone on and on about this cake but ...

Finally here is the definitive recipe for Tomato Soup Cake. Thanks to Pauline and Doug from Gosport. I can vouch for the fact that all your basic criteria for a cake are covered by this one ...

a) it looks like a cake
b) it tastes like a cake
c) despite it's dodgy tomato soup ingredient - I truly believe it IS a cake

Scroll down for the recipe - it is very tasty (unlike my efforts last week)

Elsewhere over the weekend I ended up visiting Ikea and buying a basket full of stuff I didn't really need. I can now provide ice in four different styles (normal cubes, jigsaw pieces, bottles and sticks). Also I am able to scrub by back and scrub my feet (not that I wasn't before) courtesy of the bathroom department. And - I am living the rock'n'roll dream, baby - I have 3 extra tea towels to add to my arsenal.

All of that I can live with but I made a rash purchase of a new light. All I'm going to say is that the showroom must have been deceptively spacious as I now have a light which gets in the way where ever you are in the room. Imagine a lamp on the end of a fishing rod that's bending over under the strain and you've just about got it. I fear it's going to have to be consigned to the dining room where it will attack unsuspecting guests.

Either that or ebay is just about to gain one more item.

So here's the joke ...

After suffering through years of his wife's awful coffee, the man spat it out and took the coffee maker to his lawyer.

Dropping it on the lawyer's desk, the man growled, "Here they are!"

"Here are what?" the startled lawyer asked.

"The grounds for divorce ...."
Mental Maths time again and all fairly straight forward for the start of the week. Rules are simple no writing down, do all the sums in your head and see if you can get to the answer.


take off 4
times 6
double it
take off 36
divided by 4
take away 9
times 9
double it ....


And finally ....


2 cups plain flour
11/2 cups sugar
4 teaspoons baking powder
11/2 teaspoons ground allspice (not mixed spice)
1 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
½ teaspoon ground cloves
1 can of condensed Tomato Soup
½ cup vegetable shortening ( I use vegetable oil )
2 eggs
¼ cup of water

Grease and flour two 8-inch sandwich pans.
Preheat oven to 350 F 180 C Gas 5

Put all ingredients in a large bowl. Mix on low speed until ingredients
are blended. Then at high speed for four minutes. Divide equally between
the two pans and bake for 35/40 minutes or until a tester comes out clean.
Cool in pans for 10 minutes, then remove from the pans and cool completely.

Cream cheese filling
50g softened butter
50g cream cheese
Icing sugar
½ teaspoon vanilla essence

Blend butter and cream cheese, add vanilla. Add enough icing sugar to make the right consistency.

Thursday, 11 September 2008

In need of something savoury

Am feeling slightly unwell.

May be something to do with consuming a victoria sponge, a chocolate and coca cola cake and a tomato soup cake. If that wasn't bad enough here's the recipe, as promised, for the chocolate and mayonnaise cake. (Thanks to Rona)

Oh - and it's in American measurements. I appear to have had trouble with my cup sizes. Apparently it's a common trait in most men.

Chocolate Mayonnaise cake

A chocolate mayonnaise cake, made with mayonnaise in place of eggs and oil.

* 2 cups flour
* 1/2 cup cocoa
* 1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
* 1/4 teaspoon salt
* 1 cup sugar
* 3/4 cup mayonnaise
* 1 cup water
* 1 teaspoon vanilla

Sift together the flour, cocoa, soda and salt. Cream together the sugar, mayonnaise, water and vanilla. Add dry ingredients to the creamed mixture; stir until well blended. Pour batter into greased and floured layer cake pans (or a 9- x 13-inch pan). Bake at 350°F. for about 25


So here's the joke ...

A man sits at a cafe, enjoying an after work aperitif, when a gorgeous young woman walks in. He cannot take his eyes off her. The woman notices his attentive stare and walks directly toward him. Before he can apologize for staring, the woman says, "I will do anything for you, absolutely anything, for just £100. There's only one condition."

"What's that?" asks the flabbergasted man.

The woman says: "You have to tell me what you want me to do in just three words".

The man considers her proposition for a moment, withdraws his wallet from his pocket and slowly counts out five twenty pound notes, which he presses into her hand. He looks deeply into her eyes as he says ....

"Paint my house."
Mental Maths today left everyone going round in circles. A little bit sneaky I know but I think you all enjoyed it. Here's what happened.


take off 8
minus 12
subtract 15
take off 6
subtract 8
take off 19
minus 13
plus 81


Tomato Soup Cake

I know, I know.

The words tomato, soup and cake should never be in the same sentence let alone the same tin. But in the interests of science I have made one. Granted I've yet to try it and there appears to be some sort of 'issue' with the frosting but it does look vaguely like a cake should.

It is quite heavy though and I have had to go on a manual handling course in order to lift it from the oven to the stand. It appears I mistook a mug for a cup and so I have made a whopper.

So here's the recipe.

Tomato Soup Cake
Serves: 8
Preparation time: 10 mins
Cooking time: 60 mins


Cake mix

Half a cup margarine
1 cup sugar
1 small tin tomato soup
1 tsp bicarbonate of soda
2 cups plain flour
2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp ground cinnamon
Half tsp ground cloves
1 tsp ground nutmeg
1 cup raisins
1 cup chopped walnuts

Frosting (optional)

1 tub cream cheese
1 tblsp melted butter
1 tsp vanilla essence
icing sugar

Blend the margarine with the sugar using an electric mixer or a wooden spoon, until soft.
Add the tomato soup into which the bicarbonate of soda has been stirred. Next, sift the dry ingredients (excluding the nuts and fruit) and add to the mixture.

Now stir in the raisins and nuts. When it has been mixed thoroughly, pour the mixture into a greased and lined baking tin. Bake in a moderate oven (350F) for 50-60 minutes.

FROSTING (optional)
Beat one tub of cream cheese and add one tablespoon of melted butter and one teaspoon of vanilla essence. Add enough icing sugar to make a spreadable consistency. Decorate the top of the cake.

Wednesday, 10 September 2008

More of a whimper than a bang ...

I must admit I did slightly squint for a moment at around about 8.30am when the world was supposed to have ended. Shoddy time keeping by the world's leading scientists meant I did look like I was about to sneeze for a good 4 or 5 minutes.

Just thought if the world was going to end when they switched on their proton collider thingy (I gave up science early) it might smart a bit and somehow by squinting it would lessen the effect. (Note: I do it a lot - the whole something's about to hurt so squint a bit - it's kind of my natural anaesthetic - particularly for the removal of plasters).

Anyway turns out the world didn't end and more to the point turns out they weren't even doing the colliding stuff just sending a few protons round the block as a bit of a warm up. The real thing isn't happening until October.

More sleepless nights.

Perhaps I'll combine the End of the World Part II with the removal of a plaster.

So here's the joke ...

Doris was a little tinker. Young beyond her years she goes to live in an old people's home.
It all seems a little boring so she decides to liven things up. Doris proceeds to run up and down the halls in the nursing home. As she goes, she flips up the hem of her nightgown and says "Supersex...".

There'd she go - up and down the corridors flipping her hem - "Superersex, supersex, supersex ...."

She walks up to an elderly man in a comfy day chair flipping her gown at him.

"Supersex, " she says ...

The old man sits there silently for a moment or two lost deep in thought ..... Finally he replies ....

"I think I'll take the soup ...."

Mental Maths and a bumper batch of homework handed in. The window cleaners of Gosport and Lymington are slugging it out. New rival carpet fitters and posties have joined the fray.


times 4
divide by 3
times 4
plus 23
take off 11
divided by 5
double it


Tuesday, 9 September 2008

The simple things

All I'm going to say is ....

Picked up the ball on the halfway line, skipped past one, cutback past another, into the box - one more to beat, faked a left, went to the right - and curved it right to left on the outside of the boot.

Life went into slow motion, for an instant the world held it's breath, the keeper stayed put beguiled by the sheer sporting poetry of the moment as the spinning ball danced into the back of the net.

That was a moment.

That is living.

That, as Lee McKenzie would say, is whadi'mtalkinabooouuuutttt!

(The fact I missed another 4 or 5 absolute sitters and couldn't hit a barn door from 3 paces for the rest of the game and can't quite walk straight today .... well - that kind of spoiled the story).

So here's the joke ....

A husband and wife were sitting out on their back porch, enjoying a glass of lemonade after a long hard day. A bird flew over and, with perfect aim leaves a deposit squarely in the middle of the wife's head. She reached up, felt the damage, and shouts 'Quick, get some toilet paper.'

'It wouldn't do any good,' replies the husband. 'He's miles away by now.'

Mental Maths time and I promised no fractions today. All fairly straight forward if you had your wits about you. It's just the big subtraction in the middle which threw a few.


times 3
times 3
times 2
times 3
take off 74
divided by 11
times 3
halve it ....


Monday, 8 September 2008

I blame the scientists

There I was - having a nice old life, everything bimbling along as it should and now I've been told the world is going to end on Wednesday. I am somewhat cross. Something to do with a bunch of scientists beneath Switzerland and France playing around with atoms and protons and things generally you should leave well alone.

Now I'd like to think I'm a big fan of progress - man's eternal quest for knowledge has brought us many breakthroughs saving countless lives and improving the quality of life for billions. But when there's a tiny ickle chance the next experiment may cause a black hole which would suck us all in, cause the sun to explode and end mankind and the very universe itself I would like to think someone, somewhere will be thinking "Can I just run through the numbers again?"

As my grandad used to say "Measure twice, cut once." In this case he probably would have approved of multiple measuring just to "make sure". Unlike 4x4x2 wood I hear a new galaxy is quite hard to come by. They don't do them at B&Q.

On the upside at least I won't have my mid life crisis.

Every cloud.

So here's the joke ...

Once upon a time there was a wise man called Indian Chief Cheesecake. His was very fond of his desserts. He was a clever and kind man and much loved by his wife. But one stormy night - well into his twilight years - his time comes and he dies peacefully in his sleep.

The next day the villagers gather to discuss plans for his big send off. After much talking it's decided his wife should carry out the duties. All of a sudden one of the elders begins to laugh.

"Why do you laugh old man? Do you wish to disrespect our ancestors?"

"No," says the old man. "But I've just thought .... Squaw bury Cheesecake."

Mental Maths was really sneaky today. And great news Shifty and Daz in Gosport now have some rival window cleaners in Lymington. Will be keeping scores.


divided by 2
times 4
divided by a half
halve that
take away 1
plus 9
times a quarter
take off a half


Friday, 5 September 2008

I'm still a kid from the 70's

This Internet thing. It is quite good, isn't it?

Having grown up with ZX81's and wobbly ram packs, Commodore 64's and dodgy tape decks and of course ZX Spectrums I can't cease to wonder at the marvel of technology that is the World Wide Web. Now I'm sure that it is used daily by the world's top scientists in a bid to further mankind, cure all illnesses and improve our understanding of why we're all here but .... last night I played pictionary with someone in Denver?

How cool is that!?!??!

I was a bit bored kicking around the house so decided to, I believe they call it, "surf" the net. Find a site that lets you play pictionary online with other people around the world. It was so cool - you get your word, attempt to draw it and everyone else has a go a guessing. Then you join in the global guessing of some, let's be honest, quite shambolic doodling.

Turns out it's quite hard to draw an "oxygen mask" using a mouse but I gave it my best shot. Was more successful with "rain drop", "mountain goat", "green bean" and "railroad" (it's American - you'll have to forgive them).

Now all I need to find is an online version of Mousetrap and my life will be complete.

So here's the joke ...

An infant rabbit was orphaned. Fortunately though, a family of squirrels took it in and raised it as if it were one of their own. This adoption led to some peculiar behaviours on the part of the rabbit, including a tendency for it to run around like his step-siblings rather than the more regular rabbit hop. As the rabbit grew up, however, it soon faced an identity crisis. So when day the little rabbit goes to its squirrel step-parents to discuss the problem. It said how it felt different from its step-siblings, was unsure of its place in the universe, and was generally forlorn.
Their response was simply ...

"Don't scurry be hoppy."

A slightly sneaky Mental Maths today but it still caught a few of you out. Never altogther comfortable with the whole 17 & 18 thing. Here's the puzzle ...


add 18
plus 17
add on 18
plus 17
add 18
add 17
plus 18


Thursday, 4 September 2008

Decisions, decisions, decisions

OK - here's the dilemma.

Do I ...

a) Buy a VW campervan - found a beauty ex German police tintop needs a respray but solid as a rock. At the moment it's very orange but new wheels and new paint and it would look fantastic.

b) Do up my bathroom - original intention of funds was to do bathroom following kitchen. Bathroom alrightish at the moment but could do with a tart up.

c) Move house - seen a place for sale with a proper garden that I can't just about afford if I'm good and never drink or eat out again (am ignoring any alleged credit crunch)

I can only do one - but which one. Any help appreciated. Decisions, decisions, decisions ....

Answers of a postcard to ....

So here's the joke ...

A man, preparing for what could be a lengthy divorce case, is researching potential costs. He walks into a lawyer's office and inquired about the rates.

"Fifty pounds for three questions, " replied the lawyer.

"Isn't that awfully steep?" asked the man.

"Yes," the lawyer replied, "and what's your third question."

Mental Maths time and a bumper attendance in class today. Just a shame I had to hand out so many detentions. See you tomorrow at 11.15am sharp.


double it
times itself
take off 2
double it
double that
take off 7
double it
double that


Wonky axle and the DVD

Granted it does sound like the latest Indie Band all the kids are listening to but in reality it is just an accurate description of last night's activities.

As you may have worked out I haven't quite cracked the whole wobbly wheel problem on the bike (I may have to put on hold my application form to be part of Lance Armstrong's pit crew) but it did actually get me home. Granted I felt a bit like Coco the Clown (all I needed was the squirty flower but, despite a mild sense of nausea from it's wonkiness, it got me home.

Back to the workshop today.

I went crazy when shopping last night and bought 3, that's right 3, DVD's. Three quid each it was a case of what haven't I seen. One of the 3 - The Constant Gardener - I watched last night. Cracking film but was left slightly confused at the end. What was the significance of the lake? It began and ended at the lake - any reason? And how did they know he'd be at the lake at the end?

Answers on a postcard please.

So here's the joke ...

A married couple were asleep when the phone rang at 2am in the morning. The wife picks up the phone listens a moment and says, "How should I know, that's 200 miles from here!"

She hangs up.

"Who was that?" says the husband.

The wife says, "I don't know. It was a woman. She wanted to know if the coast was clear."

Mental Maths time and sorry about the slight hiccup with the text system today. It's all been fixed but it was a bit of a let off for some of you as it was quite a brain fryer.


add 27
take away 17
minus 7
add 27
take away 8
add on 18
take away 8
add 27


Tuesday, 2 September 2008

For heaven's sake ...

.. I am 37 years old and I am still rubbish at anything involving a spanner and or torque wrench. How can this happen? Was there a day I missed when all of a sudden, as a man, I wake up with the ability to strip anything in the dark (steady), grease, oil and reassemble?

Clearly that day has yet to happen as it is now nearly week 2 of the long running saga "Jon attempts to fix his bike."

Wow you're probably thinking - not surprised he's struggling - he'd need to be some sort of gifted mechanic to work on a motorbike .... If only - it happens that my push bike - yes the basic invention from the 1800's has developed a wonky wheel. However it also happens that the stupic invention from the 1800's has beaten me.

I've taken the rear wheel apart (easy), grease it up all (love the smell of tubs of grease) but am now struggling in the final - and some would say equally important part - of reassembling said rear wheel. It's got the stage now that it's too embarrassing to ask any more people to help. My only solution so far is to learn how to do a front wheelie thus enabling me to continue to use said stupid, poorly thought out, ridiculously illogically manufactured bike.

Stupid bike. Stupid Jon.

You decide.

So here's the joke ...

Young James, moved to Lymington and bought a donkey from a farmer for £100.00. The farmer agreed to deliver the donkey. The next day he drove up and said, "Sorry son, but I have some bad news, the donkey died."

James replied, "Well, then, just give me my money back."

The farmer said, "Can't do that. I went and spent it already."

James said, "Ok, then, just bring me the dead donkey."

The farmer asked, "What are you going to do with him?"

James said, "I'm going to raffle him off."

The farmer said, "You can't raffle off a dead donkey!"

James said, "Sure I can. Watch me. I just won't tell anybody he's dead."

A month later, the farmer met up with James and asked, "What happened with that dead donkey ?"

James said, "I raffled him off. I sold 500 tickets at two pounds a piece and made a profit of £898.00.'"

The farmer asked, "Didn't anyone complain?"

"Only the person who won. I have him his money back."

Mental Maths time and here's the solution to today's problem. Lots of right answers but a fair few in detention today. More Mental Maths tomorrow at 11.15am on the show.


times itself
take off 15
divided by 7
plus 16
times 3
take off 30
divided by 3
times 4


Monday, 1 September 2008


Summer is officially over. It is now Autumn. Soon be Christmas.

Had a super holiday down in the South of France. It is truly beautiful. Very - er - French. It was one of those vineyard-next-door-baguettes-down-the-lane jobs. Ended up in a 200 year old farmhouse with a pool in the middle of nowhere. St Tropez was a quick hop over the mountains.

Found out a couple of things. I actually like driving on the other side of the road. Never done it before. Did a couple of comedy window adjustments instead of gear changes and visa versa and of course got in the passenger seat a couple of times despite being the driver. Roundabouts were a huge novelty. Felt slightly naughty about driving the wrong (or in the French case) the right way around them. All very exciting. And much quicker if you want to turn right.

The other thing I discovered was that I'm loving the French. I mean I've never had a problem with the French before - but I didn't really get them. Now I do. I want to be French. Zut Alors! I think it's the chilled out nature of Farmhouse living which appeals so much. That and the cheese. And popping next door to the local chateau seems somehow more romantic than a trip to the local branch of Thresher.

Also had an amazing time on the car front. Where we stayed there was a large barn full, and I mean full, of some beautiful old forgotten cars. Peugots, Renaults, Citroen. Also out front was something that look a bit like a VW camper that had been washed too hot. Will stick some pics up but it was super cool. Had samba roof windows and a three way stable door at the back. A bit of research found out it was a Renault Estafette. Big in the 60's and 70's. Very cool - got lots of character - sadly not the HP. But could it give the VW a run for it's money in a few years? Anyway if you know anymore let me know.

Speak soon.

So here's the joke ...

Little Johnny is talking to a couple of boys in the schoolyard. Each is bragging about how fast their fathers are.

The first one says, 'My father runs the fastest. He can fire an arrow and get to the target before it hits!'

The second one says, 'You think that's fast? My father's a hunter. He can shoot his gun and be there before the bullet!'

And then Johnny stands up and says "That's nothing. My dad works for the council. He leaves work at 5pm and gets back at 4.30pm."

It's back - Mental Maths. If you went wrong today here it is. Remember your lines and if you want to take part see you at 11.15am on the show.


Multiply by 12
Divide by 2
Three quarters of that number
Double it
Take off 17
Times 10
Take off 95
Minus 45


Friday, 15 August 2008

Summer hols ...

So that's it - school's out for Summer.

Granted it's a little shorter than the retro 6 week holiday I was hoping for but a couple of weeks off isn't to be sniffed at, is it? Off to the South of France for a week and then will be surfing for week after in between finishing off things I should have done before I went off on holiday.

Have a lovely fortnight and fingers crossed the weather cheers up a bit. Will leave you the last two jokes to groan at and the last couple of Mental Maths to puzzle over.

Laters Potaters

Jon x

PS Am trying to persuade them to shell out for some Head Boy, Head Girl, Milk Monitor and Prefect badges to hand out. Also a flat pack Dunces hat for the class thickos.

So here are the jokes ...

During his spell in prison, Michael learnt carpentry and became highly accomplished. He was also a model prisoner so when the Governor wanted some work doing on his kitchen at home, he asked Michael whether he would help out.

"I've done the cupboards," said the Governor, "but promised my wife a nice kitchen work surface and, to be honest, I don't think I'm up to the job. So could you do it for me?"

"I'd like to," said Michael "But ..... it was counter fitting that got me here in the first place ..."
And from Thursday ...

A Sunday school teacher reads a Bible passage to her class.

"And the Lord appointed a great fish to swallow up Jonah; and Jonah was in the belly of the great fish for three days and three nights. Then Jonah prayed and prayed for help with his whale based predicament.

And so the great fish was called from on high to vomit out Jonah upon the dry land.

When she's finished reading the teacher says - now children what does this story teach us.

Little Johnny raises his hand and says ...."You can't keep a good man down?"

Here's the answer to yesterday's Mental Maths. Check it out on the show weekdays at 11.15am when I get back.

add 26
add the indiviual digits together
take off 17
times 9
add the digits together
reverse the digits
times 2
add it to the starting number


And finally the answer to today's Mental Maths. Check it out on the show weekdays at 11.15am when I get back.


add 27
double it
take away 1
divided by 9
times 6
take off 35
times 2
treble it


Wednesday, 13 August 2008

The one I couldn't read ...

Here's the email which caused me so many problems today.

"Hi Jon,

Not wanting to offend your lovely lady caller Nora but she reminded me of this story. I don't think you'll be able to, and in fact I hope you don't read this out - just one to share with you and the crew.

Several years ago when my Mum was in hospital the patient in the next bed to her was a lovely lady called Nora.

On one ocassion when i was visiting, Nora wasn't in her bed - she'd gone for an xray or something. Anyway I was at the bottom of the bed massaging Mum's feet (I'm a reflexologist) when I happened to glance up and notice Nora's name board above her bed. I took a double take and thought "no that doesn't say Cook " and started to giggle. Mum asked what I was laughing at and i said "do you know what Nora's surname is?- it's Cock!! "

Followed hysterical laughing and my Mum hoping Nora didn't come back too soon! My Mum at the time was in her 80's - God bless her she died a couple of years ago and I know will be horrified that I'm sharing this with you!"

Now can you see why I was laughing?! Truly brilliant.

So here's the joke ...

A man goes into a shop to buy his wife a present from their anniversary. He points out a bottle of perfume and asks how much.

"That's 50 pounds, sir," replies the assistant.

"Oh no - that's far too much - what about a smaller bottle?"

"That's 30 pounds, sir," says the assistant.

"No," says the man. "That's still way too much. What about that really tiny bottle there?"

"That's 15 pounds," says the assistant.

"No," says the man. "Still too much. I'd like to see something cheap."

So the assistant gives him a mirror.
Here's the answer to today's Mental Maths. Check it out on the show weekdays at 11.15am.

times 7
double it
divided by 7
add 23
times 3
take away 17
add 9
divided by 5


Surf's up

Monday was hilarious. Cold, wet, long but hilarious.

Have just got my head around putting the photos up on the blog. Everyone was so lovely down at Boscombe and a few even braved the August weather to come and say hello to us on our tour bus. A big thanks to the surf team for letting us loose and ensuring we didn't end up at the Needles.

Anyway enjoy the pics.

Write soon.

So here's the joke ...

A young couple buy a new car and take it for a spin in the countryside. Feeling romantic and one thing leads to another - and then another and then another. Anyway - they soon work out that the car is too small. Instead they squeeze underneath the car to express their passion for one another.

Well after a few minutes a policeman walks by and tells the couple he's going to have to arrest them for indecent exposure.

"But I'm not doing anything illegal under here," complains the man. "I'm a mechanic."

"No you're not - you're making love. And I can tell that for three reasons. Firstly you have no tools out. Secondly I can see a second pair of legs and thirdly ....

... someone's stolen your car."

Here's the answer to today's Mental Maths. Check it out on the show weekdays at 11.15am. Pretty straight forward this one. Here's the solution.


plus 12
double it
add 17
divided by 5
plus 29
times 4
divided by 16
take off 20 percent ....


Thursday, 7 August 2008

A starter for ten .... well, four

Had people over for dinner last night. Subjected them to my new starter. Thought I'd share it with you today as it's super quick and super cool. As far as I know all guests are still alive.

Ok here's what you need (serves 4)

8 ripe figs
Roquefort cheese (or something just as stinky)
Olive oil
Balsamic vinegar

It's pretty basic and super quick.

Quarter the figs and divide up onto four plates. Grate cheese onto the figs (you might have to chill the cheese for a bit in the freezer prior to grating otherwise it might clog up). Drizzle olive oil and balsamic vinegar (to taste) on top and Bob's your uncle.

Simple as that.

I might put in for FasterChef.

So here's the joke ...

A shy boy meets a girl at a nightclub and wanted to invite her back to his house. He asks her whether she would like to see his collection of stamps and that she has beautiful eyes ....
"Huh!" snorts the girl. "Philately gets you nowhere."

Here's the answer to today's Mental Maths. Check it out on the show weekdays at 11.15am. Tougher than yesterday.Here's the solution.


halve it
times 3
take off 19
add 43
divided by 9
times itself
take off 26
halve it


Wednesday, 6 August 2008

Wonky wheel

There I was getting all healthy and credit crunch savvy. My big plan - to save millions of pounds in petrol per week and cycle in to work. Granted it's only about 3 miles but I figured that's got to save something (especially with current fuel prices) and also give the creaky old knees a work out.

It's a win win situation.

Well - it would have been if I hadn't suffered from a wonky wheel. Am fairly sure Lance Armstrong gets it from time to time. For no reason I can figure my back wheel has decided that straight and upright is a bad thing and that loose and wonky is better. I felt a bit like Bonzo the Clown - all I needed was a squirting flower, a big pair of tartan trousers and some size 18 shoes. In the end I had to get off due to the embarrassing squeaks and scrapes and the fact I was scaring small children and animals. Strangely it's a longer walk than it is a cycle.

The greater worry is that it was the back wheel which would imply it was somewhat overloaded. Quite with what I couldn't imagine - however I'm starting to get the message.

Diet, anyone?

So here's the joke ...

A seaman meets a pirate in a bar, and talk turns to their adventures on the sea. The seaman notes that the pirate has a peg-leg, a hook, and an eye patch.

The seaman asks, "So, how did you end up with the peg-leg?" The pirate replies, "We were in a storm at sea, and I was swept overboard into a school of sharks. Just as my men were pulling me out, a shark bit my leg off."

"Wow!" said the seaman. "What about your hook"? "Well", replied the pirate, "We were boarding an enemy ship and were battling the other sailors with swords. One of the enemy cut my hand off."

"Incredible!" remarked the seaman. "How did you get the eye patch"? "A seagull dropping fell into my eye," replied the pirate.

"You lost your eye to a seagull dropping?," the sailor asked incredulously. "Well," said the pirate, "It was the day after I got me hook."

Here's the answer to today's Mental Maths. Check it out on the show weekdays at 11.15am. Lots of people got it right today. But not everyone. Here's the solution.


times 8
double it
take away 30
halve that
divided by 7
add 10
add 18
divided by 5


Tuesday, 5 August 2008

Bin busy

Producer Alun has made a good point. You can never have too many bins.

I've just noticed I haven't got even near enough. Am taking this whole recycling business seriously now (my token effort to save the planet). But the problem is you appear to have to be ultra organised in order to prevent a global catastrophe of biblical proportions (that my be over egging the pudding slightly but never let facts get in the way of creative writing).

Anyway I no longer can just have a rubbish bin and a recycling bin - it doesn't work. That would be far too simple. I've worked out I need five bins. Rubbish, food waste, glass, newspaper and cardboard - oh and plastics - apart from of course yoghurt pots but that's another story. Anyway the problem is if I invest in five bins I will no longer be able to get in or out of the kitchen. I definitely won't be able to reach the switch for the boiler meaning that in my effort to save the planet I will have left the central heating on for a hundred years so melting both polar caps, running up a third world debt (gas ain't cheap) and ending mankind.

So technically the most environmentally friendly thing I can do is just to put it all in the same bin meaning that I'll be in total control of my radiator temperatures thus saving the planet.

Besides I can always just bury it all along with all that nuclear waste. I'm sure it'll be fine, won't it?

So here's the joke ...

A brown paper bag goes to his doctor feeling unwell. The doctor takes all sorts of samples and says to the bag to come next week. Next week comes and the doctor says, "I'm afraid I've got some bad news. We discovered from your tests that you've got an hereditary disorder."

"Really?" says the bag. "How can that be? I'm a brown paper bag."

"Ah yes," says the doctor. "But your mother was a carrier."

And new from today here's the answer to today's Mental Maths. Check it out on the show weekdays at 11.15am. Lots of people got it wrong today. Here's the solution.

give me 3 fifths of that
50 percent of that
a third of that
divided by a half
double it
plus 1
times by a third
add that to the starting number


Monday, 4 August 2008

Boscombe here we come!

This time next week we'll be on the beach AND getting paid for it. Ok - so it probably won't be the breeze it sounds but it definitely makes a change from the studio. We've got the big red bus and we'll be heading down early doors to lay out our towels. Am attempting to get the whole team into wetsuits for a surf session.

So far they all seem remarkably keen. That may change as we get closer to the day but I'll definitely be going in for a go come rain or shine.

Good news - the little orange light has gone off on the Blue Peril. Am working on the theory that if it's gone out it couldn't have been that serious. Either that or it's so serious the warning bulb has burned itself out attempting to alert me. Mind you I would expect that any decent car would have a warning light to warn you that the original warning light has gone out. No more lights have come on so I'm assuming I'm fine. And that's what I'll repeat to myself when I'm stuck on the hard shoulder of the M27 with my bonnet up and 4 litres of Castrol on the floor.

Have been negating my blogging duties - not because I've been up to mischief but I seem to be short on time all of a sudden. I mean it's not like I've begun living a jet set life of constant holidays and parties - I seriously think either someone is sat on the fast forward button or, more likely, am slowing up and have started thinking snoozing on the sofa is a good idea.

Unfortunately once you have a couple you can't stop yourself. Am worried next time I wake up it'll be 2009.

The year as opposed to 10 past eight ish.

So here's the joke ... (best one from last week)

A remote monastery was home to an order of monks who communicated with each other only by chanting. Every morning they would assemble in the chapel and the abbot would chant.

"Good morning assembled brethren."

And the monks would dutifully reply, "Good morning Father Abbot."

But one morning a maverick monk instead chanted "Good evening, father abbot."

The abbot glared at the monks and proclaimed, "Someone chanted evening!"

Monday, 28 July 2008

Remember me?

It's been sooo long? Hope you're good and enjoying the sunshine.

Had a lurvely week off - spent a few days in Croyde surfing - just me, chillin' out, eat, surf, sleep, repeat etc. And then of course we all went up to Croydon at the weekend for producer Lewis & Cat's wedding. Beautiful day, beautiful couple and the beer was pretty good too.

So all round life is pretty good at the moment. The only slight downer is an engine light which has come on on the Blue Peril. Had to stop in Exeter on the way home from Devon to get it checked out. Luckily it's nothing critical but it needs to be sorted. The people at the garage were truly lovely - kept me supplied with coffee and tea whilst the mechanic looked at it - but it did end up costing 65 quid just to tell me why the bulb was lit. Not to fix it - just to say "Yup - the bulb's on." I kind of knew that already.

Anyway am starting to think the light is simply to remind me to spend money on the car and has come on because it's been at least a couple of months with nothing going wrong. Am fairly sure all cars are fitted with a similar device.

You wouldn't get that on a camper.

So here's the joke ...

A man went into a pet shop and said to the owner, I'd like to buy a pet that is out of the ordinary - unusual. The pet shop owner replied, well, I have one Rairy-bird left... The man said, I've never even heard of a Rairy-bird, that certainly makes it unusual, I'll take it!

So the man brought home his new Rairy-bird and soon found out that it had a huge appetite! It was always hungry!!

Finally, the Rairy-bird was so big and fat that it wouldn't fit inside the house anymore, much less the cage! The man said to himself: I've got to get rid of this animal-I can't afford to feed it! So he rented a huge dump truck, put the Rairy-bird into the back, and drove to the edge of a high cliff.
He then dumped the Rairy-bird out of the truck and over the cliff!!

Thinking that all his troubles were over, the man was driving home when he suddenly heard this singing coming from the back of the dump- truck ...

"It's a long way to tip a Rairy."

Wednesday, 16 July 2008

I can't breathe ....

... from laughing.

Have just watched the film footage of the roller coaster ice cream incident of Wednesday 16th July 2008. Possibly the funniest thing I've seen this year and if you watch very closely there was definitely some skulduggery going on in a couple of the turns.

For some really boring reason I can't go into I can't stick the film up on the blog but keep an eye out for it on the web or Facebook group as it may well turn up.

Anyway I hope it hasn't been too long since you had one of those moments when your capacity to draw breath is severely compromised by laughing too hard.

Medically risky but man it feels so good.

So to the joke ...

A ghost loses the tail of his sheet in a revolving door and goes to an off-licence to get a new one.

'Sorry', says the man behind the counter. 'We don't sell tails and we don't serve ghosts.'

The ghost replies.

'That's not true. The sign in the window says you retail spirits.'

Tuesday, 15 July 2008

Football crazy

Monday night = football night, of course.

Nearly a full turn out from the boys and a debut appearance from Producer Lewis. Unfortunately for all of us he fluked a wonder goal from, I would say, about 20 yards out. No sooner had the ball hit the back of the net than the length of strike had increased to 25 yards. By this morning it was a 30 yarder and as a write it's a 50 yard dipping shot struck with the outside of his boot on his laces.

Don't believe a word of it. It was a tap in.

One thought re: football. You're guaranteed to hear someone shouting "Keep it simple, lads." I mean it's not like it's altogether that complex in the first place, is it? Kick ball in goal. Er .. that's it.

You never hear the rousing shout "Let's complicate it, boys" or "I think we've just got the right balance between straight forward and intricate, lads."

Perhaps it's just me.

A camping store was holding a Christmas sale and the manager put the young English Literature student, who had a holiday job there, in charge of thinking up a suitable slogan ....

And so - that's how the slogan was born ..... "Now is the offer of our discount tents."

Monday, 14 July 2008

Back to work for a rest

Happy Monday people.

I have another theory to run by you as management executives might say.

Weekends last longer if you do more. Now you may be thinking the opposite. If you're running around like a blue thingied wotsit you might be under the impression it will positively zip by but I can assure you you're wrong.

The more you do the longer it feels. Fact.

I've just had one of those weekends. I actually don't think it would have been humanly possible to do anything else even if I tried. It was bloomin' marvellous and I even saw Lewis Hamilton too. Of course right now I can hardly stay awake, feel like I've peaked far too early and am off for an early night.

Roll on the weekend.

So here's the joke ...

Four men are in a boat. They decide to have a smoke, but discover no one has any matches...
After spending five minutes deciding on what they could do, one of the men comes up with a solution and throws a cigarette into the sea.

Another man turns to him and says "Why did you do that for?"

"Ah," says the man. "I've made the boat a cigarette lighter."

Friday, 11 July 2008

The joys of fish finger sandwiches

It's been a bit of a full on week this week but all work wise so nothing hugely interesting to report back sadly. Can't decide whether it's a good or a bad sign but yesterday evening when I got in I promptly passed out on the sofa fast asleep whilst still wearing my coat/jacket.

I didn't wake up until about 9.30pm at which point I stumbled into the kitchen, put my head in the fridge and decided what I really fancied at that moment in time was a toasted fish finger sandwich with mayo and black pepper. Bizarre. I have no idea where that thought came from but I went with it and promptly loaded 6 fish fingers onto the grill and armed the toaster with a couple of rounds of bread.

Once that was on the go it was then a case of which beverage best accompanies the mighty fish finger sandwich ... traditionally tea - but that gives it too much of a breakfast feel for half past nine at night. Wine perhaps was too sophisticated and I was clean out of beer.

And so it was at 9.43pm on Thursday night I found myself sipping organic cider in between mouthfuls of a slightly over toasted fish finger sandwich.

I may have discovered a taste sensation.

You read it here first ....

So here are the jokes (sorry I missed yesterday's)

Harry wants to get married but can't find a girl his mother approves of. To solve this dilemma a friend suggests that he looks for a girl just like his mother, so he does. He finds a woman who looks like her, dresses like her, and talks like her. Then he takes her home to meet his parents.

"How did it go?" asks the friend.

"Awful," say Harry. "My dad can't stand the woman."

And .......

Two herrings , Cain and Abel, were regular visitors to a bar. One day, Cain showed up alone and the bartender asked: "Where's your brother?"

"How should I know?" said Cain. "Am I my brothers kipper?"

Wednesday, 9 July 2008

I'm bored/board .....

... of losing at stupid board games.

Last night was not a good night for me. Went round to Producer Al's for dinner and somewhat inevitably it was suggested the old board games should be dusted down and given a whirl. Now I'm not complaining but surely the guests should be allowed to choose which game is played? As a result I found myself playing an updated version of snakes and ladders involving space rockets and exploding supernovas (apparently it's what Al's kids are into), a small child's Lego building game and that 1970's classic - Perfection.

Red wine has a lot to answer for.

It started badly. Really badly. My cardboard space ship was quickly sucked into a black hole never to be seen again. Never mind I thought - I'm pretty good at Lego. However it soon becomes apparent I'm not good at throwing dice, collecting cards and playing Lego. This game is for kids ages 3 and up - I'm 37.

As for Perfection - it was anything but and the rest of the evening was spent scrabbling about trying to find the plastic shapes that had been ejected from the 1970's classic because I was too slow.


Give me Operation anytime.

So here's the joke ...

Two Eskimos were paddling their kayak along the Alaskan coast. The temperatures were so freezing that even beneath their layers of clothing the Eskimos started to feel the cold. In a desperate attempt to keep warm they lit a fire - but the wooden kayak went up in flames and the Eskimos were never seen again ....

The moral of the story is you can't have your kayak and heat it.