Tuesday, October 31, 2006

Problems on Blogger

Apologies for the strange posts/ removal of posts that have been occurring on these pages recently, I am having some problems publishing with blogger that I thought were due to html errors but are actually issues with the blogspot server. At one point I thought it was the end of the People's Republic. You Cockneys won't get rid of us that easily...

Anyway, hopefully normal service will resume soon.

Sunday, October 29, 2006

The Land of the Free

The links to Electoral-Vote.com on the right-hand side will alert you to the fact that the People's Republic takes a keen interest in major elections on the other side of the pond. As part of Britain, it usually decides our foreign policy. Despite their break with an unelected head-of-state however, you cannot help feeling the American's just do not get democracy.

Take this link. It reminds me off the story of the Bush campaign using pictures of John McCain with his adopted Vietnamese daughter to the same effect in the primaries of 1999 when things were going bad for the President-in-waiting. As the writer of electoral-votes.com points out, normally elections are decided on taxation, education, health and foreign policy - but not in America.

Meanwhile on YouTube VideotheVote.com are among the featured links on the front page. They operated in 2004 with some interesting stories but received little coverage from the mainstream media, leaving it to sites like michaelmoore.com to cover their reports. It will be interesting to see whether YouTube could follow blogs and set the agenda rather than just report it. YouTube has democratised the media, allowing the average man in the street with a camcorder to take on the big corporations whose news fits their agenda. Will it finally break the story of the state-sponsored polling bias in America?

Which brings me onto another link on the right-hand side, 18 Doughty Street. Fed-up with the dumbed down news we receive on the mainstream channels in the UK, a group of bloggers have taken it upon themselves to start their own free internet news channel. I've never watched it (I doubt my computer could take much video streaming) but the People's Republic wishes them well. As far as we are concerned, the more independent sources of news we have, the better.

Thursday, October 26, 2006

Birmingham "Most Ready for Disaster"

According to the Reader's Digest Birmingham is the most ready of all the major English cities to cope with a major terrorist attack or disaster. Maybe a little too ready..?

Tuesday, October 10, 2006

Paul Hunter 1978 - 2006

It seems to be the year for talented young sportsmen dying before their time. After Richard Burns earlier this year, Paul Hunter lost his battle against cancer yesterday a year-and-a-half after being diagnosed. When he first burst onto the scene it seemed obvious to all snooker fans that he was destined to be a world champion, and we al looked forward to some titanic battles between him and Ronnie O'Sullivan.
Unfortunately, it was not to be, and it we are left to ponder on what might have been.

Monday, October 09, 2006

Nutters on YouTube 2

These guys really are sad. Get a life.

Sunday, October 08, 2006

Nutters on YouTube 1

When I first saw this I thought it might be a new Bin Laden video. The problem with YouTube is it allow any idiot to post films.

Friday, October 06, 2006

Munich Day 5: Olympia, Oktoberfest and English Garden

On our final day on Munich last week we started off by visiting the BMW building and Olympic Park which comprised the Stadium, Swimming Hall, Ice Rink and Olympic Hall. We climbed the Olympic Mountain which gave us a magnificent view of the entire complex. We visited the temporary BMW Museum inside the Olympic Park; BMW World, the new Museum is under construction and will not be completed until 2007. After the mist of the morning the sun came out and we could finally see the top of the Olympic Turn.

From there we hastened to Oktoberfest where we managed to get served inside one of the tents of Lowenbrau, famous in Bavaria for having the worst beer (which tastes like Carling!). From there we had a final beer at the Chinese Turn in the English Garden. We rushed back to the hotel to pick up our bags, and took the underground for the last time to the Airport (via Marienplatz and the S-bahn) where we encountered a surprisingly inefficient German check-in system. Of course, it would not have been a holiday if the plane back had not been overbooked or delayed, but I did manage to make it home just before midnight.

Thursday, October 05, 2006

Munich Day 4: Salzburg

The mist in Bavaria scuppered our plans to visit Zugspitze, Germany's highest mountain where on a clear day one can see four countries so we instead set off to Salzburg, just across the border in Austria where we were immersed in Mozart and the Sound of Music for the Day. The city is dominated by a fort on the hill above from which you can see the entire old quarter. The sun never stopped shining in the Costa del Salzburg.

We finished the evening back at Augustiner in Munich City Centre were we ate traditional Weisswurst tourist style.

Wednesday, October 04, 2006

Munich Day 3: Neuschwanstein Castle

On day 3 we took to the road (or the rather more efficient train actually) where up to 5 people could take the regional train to anywhere in Bavaria for only €27. We went to Fuessen, and then took the bus to Hohenshwangau where we took the Royal Tour of Neuschwanstein Catle and it's baby brother Howenshwangau where Ludwig II, the fairytale king, spent his childhood. Neuschwanstein castle is a candidate for one of the seven modern wonders of the world, and the inspiration for Disney's fairytale castle. We got back to Munich late and attempted to get into the English Garden which was unfortunately already closed, so we went back to the Hotel to rest for the next day.

Tuesday, October 03, 2006

Munich Day 2: Deutches Museum, Glyptothek & Oktoberfest

On day 2 of out tour of Munich, we started off in the biggest science museum in Europe, the Deutches Museum. It had an excellent area on mining in the basement, and apparently has a good planetarium which we unfortunately did not see because we did not have time to get the extra ticket before the 12 O'Clock show started. A walk along the River Isar and back into the old centre was followed by a visit to the Glyptothek, a museum of Greek and Roman artifacts. We then rushed across town to Therensienwiese to experience Oktoberfest where we had to sit outside in the rain as we could find no room in any of the tents. We spoke to a couple of German guys about a variety of topics, and then walked home from the old town back to our hotel through the University district.

Monday, October 02, 2006

Munich Day 1: Hofbrauhaus

A week ago PRoB did a five day tour of Munich and the surrounding areas. I will record here brief highlights of each day including some pictures I took.

On day one, after a delay at Birmingham Airport which meant we had to change planes and fly via Zurich, we finally got to the Hotel around 9pm. A quick tour of the old city was followed by a trip to the city Beergarten of the state brewerey Hofbrauhaus, where we feasted on pretzels and beer.