Friday, 18 February 2011

An odd side effect

My usual part-time work that I occasionally manage to squeeze between school runs has been severely, or to be more accurate, fatally effected by my now constant sciatica. That really should be SCIATICA read with a very deep Grim Reaper-esque voice. If anyone has not experienced the pleasure of being inflicted by this particularly nasty ailment I will try to describe it for you. Imagine, if you will, a poker that has been heated until white-hot. Imagine that very same poker being repeatedly dipped in napalm and then inserted at base of spine and thrust down the inside of your leg until it protrudes from your big toe. Then, having been allowed to cool just long enough to attach itself to your entire nervous system, being ripped out. That my friends is SCIATICA, although in the interest of health and safety I should point out that I haven't actually tried the comparison I so can't guarantee the results, or the well-being of anyone that feels like having a go.

Most people who suffer from SCIATICA have had some kind of back injury but for me it is just a symptom of injuries sustained in a rather nasty motorcycle accident a long, long time ago. My Uncle Eddie would very much like me to tell you about my leg, and I will, in due course, but not today. For the time being lets just say that one leg is shorter than the other.

As if my usual pains were not enough I have recently been afflicted by night cramps. Just two words, sounds so innocent! If any of you have had simultaneous cramp in toes, calf and thigh at 3am you might have a more descriptive phrase than night cramps! At the doctors today I mentioned this new development and was prescribed Quinine which will also get rid of any malaria I may have picked up.

I was at Maggie May's house (after a lovely day with Eddie Bluelights) when I opened the Quinine and she suggested I should read the literature to make sure there were no hideous side effects. Good idea I thought, so I read the list aloud. "Can cause kidney problems, breathing difficulties, blood disorders, heart problems, muscle weakness, fluid retention, sciatica and leg shortening". "What?" exclaimed Maggie, "surely you aren't going to risk that! What on earth is wrong with your doctor giving you something like that!". There was a pause while I kept a completely straight face. "Leg shortening?" said Maggie, "leg shortening?".

Monday, 14 February 2011

Let them eat chocolate!

OBESE WILL BANKRUPT NHS read the Sunday Express yesterday. Apparently Britain has the highest number of obese adults in Europe. Not stopping there the paper claims that 25% of our children are obese too! A good look round the playground this morning however found not the slightest case of junior rotundity. So where are they hiding I wonder?

The article tells us that the fast food industry influences negative eating patterns and the government should really do something to stop them manipulating us into eating the wrong foods. (What? The five-a-day campaign didn't work?)

Earlier this year it seems that Health Secretary Andrew Lansley asked some makers of fast food to do something about this awful trend until it was revealed that Mr Lansley was being paid a lot of money by an advertising agency that represents several fine purveyors of junk food including one known for confectionary.

So today I guess the only logical thing for the Daily Express to do was give us a voucher for a free box of choccies!

Thursday, 3 February 2011

Witch's Hat

Inspired by a recent post by Teacher's Pet, I remembered a type of roundabout I played on as a child called a Witch's Hat. It was really a combination of a roundabout and a swing as it swung around and into the central pole. Anyone remember these? I don't recall seeing them past the early '70's as I believe they were banned after several serious accidents, although lacking any real data this may be an urban myth.

I don't remember ever hurting myself but I can see how it was possible! The photo to the left doesn't really emanate danger and it looks like there is a restrictor near the top to limit the amount of movement towards the central pole. The photo below is better and with no restrictor this was the type that probably broke legs!

It's a little sad that my kids will never know the thrill of playing on one of these - I'm sure they weren't that dangerous!

I should point out that these aren't my photos and I'm not in them - I might remember the Witch's Hat but I'm not that old!