Eclipse later today

In Southern Africa (or Patagonia) this evening? Don’t miss the partial solar eclipse later on today.

Weather permitting, Durban, Johannesbeagle, Cape Town and the rest of SA will all able to see a bite-shaped chunk missing from the side of the sun as the moon passes between us and it.

The Astronomical Society of South Africa website has all the details you need, including (but not limited to) this gif:

Yes, I was a bit concerned when the sun suddenly fell out of the Durban sky first time I saw it, too. Everything’s ok though. It’s just that we get a bit more eveningsworth for our money in the Mother City.

PLEASE, PLEASE! check their “How Do I Look?” section for hint and tips on safely watching the eclipse. It’s never safe to look directly at the sun, even if it’s almost half hidden.

And please share this post far and wide so that others get the chance to see the eclipse too. Thanks.

Live Fast, Die Young.

Here’s an amusing cartoon for you, because I’m not around to give you anything else right now. The wind appears to have dropped just enough for some flying over Struisbaai. 

The appliance I’m using is fast and young. However, I fully intend to delay the dying bit for as long as possible.

Have a good weekend. Ooh – and look out for an interesting astronomical phenomenon tomorrow – tune in here from 9am for that news.

Political Results

Dotting i’s and crossing t’s.

Barbara Fielding of the Abolish Magna Carta Reinstate Monarchy Party polled 137 votes in the Stoke-on-Trent by-election.

That put her in sixth place behind Labour (7854), UKIP (5233), the Conservatives (5154), the Liberal Democrats (2083) and the Green Party (294).

Barbara finished ahead of The Incredible Flying Brick, who was representing the Monster Raving Loony Party (127), and the candidates from the BNP (124) and the Christian People’s Party (109). Independent Mohammad Akram brought up the rear with 56 votes.

137 votes represents 0.6% of the vote.

Prime Minister not yet, Barbara.

Manifesto

Today’s by-election in Stoke-on-Trent is being contested by several candidates:

Independent – Mohammad Akram
Liberal Democrat – Zulfiqar Ali
Conservative – Jack Brereton
Monster Raving Loony – The Incredible Flying Brick
Green – Adam Colclough
Christian Peoples – Godfrey Davies
Independent – Barbara Fielding
BNP – David Furness
UKIP – Paul Nuttall
Labour – Gareth Snell

At first glance (and, to be fair, at second glance too) the oddest candidate might seem to be The Incredible Flying Brick, but that’s only because you were too busy glancing to look properly at Barbara Fielding, who will later introduce herself to us by saying that “Book-Keeping and Accounts are my speciality with cleanups”.

Barbara is recorded as a vexatious litigant:

Vexatious litigation is legal action which is brought, regardless of its merits, solely to harass or subdue an adversary. It may take the form of a primary frivolous lawsuit or may be the repetitive, burdensome, and unwarranted filing of meritless motions in a matter which is otherwise a meritorious cause of action. Filing vexatious litigation is considered an abuse of the judicial process and may result in sanctions against the offender.

Barbara is representing her own party: The Abolish Magna Carta Reinstate Monarchy Party.

It’s a bit crappily anti-semitic and right wing. And their manifesto makes the Monster Raving Loonies look, well… positively sane. You can read the whole document here, of which Barbara tells us:

The above is my updated party Constitution and Manifesto, which will be added to as I see fit, and to give other politicians a chance to copy it, and make a mess of it, as usual.

Highlights include (but are not limited to):

The Unsigned Illegal document, The Magna Carta, will be Abolished.

Fair enough. Although it is kinda over 800 years old now.

Nuclear Power will be banned.
Fracking will incur imprisonment.

Not great.

Compensation will be paid to Dwarves created by Thalidomide.

Ah good, we’re back on track.
But then, there’s this:

The Death Penalty for anyone using a Radio Signal to kill or control another human being or animal, except in warfare.

Execution by Radio Signal, I’d guess?
And my favourite bit:

Psychiatrists and Mental Health workers will have a higher IQ than the patients they pretend to be superior to.

Possibly an indication of some of the people that Barbara has encountered in her recent past? I don’t know. I’m just saying.

You can view The Abolish Magna Carta Reinstate Monarchy Party website here, and you can join for £38 per annum although “application for membership of the Abolish Magna Carta, Reinstate Monarchy is subject to review by the Party and its Constituency Associations [that’s Barbara, folks – Ed.] before final approval.”

Barbara is not a big fan of men.

MEN ARE ALWAYS BEEFING ABOUT. WOUND UP. FIGHTING FIT.HYSTERICAL.
All over the world, Men seem to be up for it, no matter where they originate from.They all want to be top dog. and they all want to kill each other off to prove how manly they are. They are all control freaks.

All male animals, have this same behavioural problem. They kill off or quell the mild gentle intelligent males of their species and then breed prolifically with equally brainless females.

That is why today, the whole world is overcrowded with riotous, brainless, worthless, spiteful people, Who should never have been born, and whom the majority, seem to manifest themselves in the Dictatorship of the Arts world of Broadcasting and Media.

Or women:

Women are equally as foolish, They allow men to treat them like chattels, and condemn anyone who goes against the norm. They too dislike intelligent women, and will try to discredit them, or put them down, especially if they are truly inadequate themselves.

Or the media:

Maybe Donald Trump should try waterboarding on Journalists and DJ’s. I’m sure Marilyn, Howard Hughes, Aristotle Onassis, and I, are  not the only people to be duped, robbed, and murdered by these scum bags.

Wait. What? You’ve been duped, robbed, and murdered by Journalists and DJ’s?
OK, I’m actually quite impressed that you’re still able to stand as a candidate, then. Post-mortem politics is no cake walk.

I’m not sure who will win today’s by-election in Stoke-on-Trent, but I really, really hope it isn’t Barbara.

The best Facebook group ever

I’m in a Facebook group. Actually, I’m in several Facebook groups, but this post is specifically about one of them. I don’t want to mention the name of this group in case doing that means that I get the boot from the group. I want to stay in the Facebook group because it is the best Facebook group ever. The reason that it’s the best Facebook group ever is because of the regular, utterly, entirely unintentional inane comments that the members of the group come out with.

Yesterday, Eric shared a video he had made. It was a video of a particular place pertinent to the theme of the group and Eric had flown his drone around that place, added a reasonably appropriate Enya backing track, and uploaded his work. It was very nice. The video garnered over 120 likes and over 30 comments.

All of the comments were along the same lines:

“Brilliant. I really enjoyed that. Thanks for sharing.”
“That’s lovely, Eric.”
“Beautiful.”
“Breathtaking.”
“How tranquil was the music? Beautiful footage.”

That sort of thing. Except for this comment, slap bang in the middle of all of that well-deserved praise:

SHE’S NOT BITTER.

Because nothing says how nice a homemade video of a church is like dragging up your biased recollection of the details of a minor car accident you were involved in over 2 years ago and the subsequent trials and tribulations of the ensuing legal process, together with a quick guilt trip for Eric, who inadvertently – by not actively tracking and recording the every move of you that day – has left our protagnoist with a much diminished no claims bonus.

But you know – lovely video. Nice music.