Personal and undiluted views
The Sweeney

1205 days ago

San Leon Energy and the missing dividends – does Computershare realise it’s not 1974 any more?

Do not get me wrong, I am told that there were some great things about the 1970s: The Sweeney, Starsky & Hutch, pre AIDS casual sex, The Harlem Globetrotters, Star Wars, Abba, the rise of Maggie… the list goes on an on. But while we may yearn for much of that, surely we do not want to go back to a world where we receive payments by cheques sent in the post? That is more George & Mildred than Debbie Harry.  Over at registrars Computershare it seems that time has stood still and they are still watching and laughing at Brian Murphy and Yootha Joyce.

My pension and other loyal shareholders in this company should have received a bumper 6p per share special dividend in San Leon Energy (SLE) on 29 May.


1907 days ago

Photo article: The white van arrives with its Bulgarian driver - its off to the Greek Hovel time

The Mrs is delighted. Boxes and boxes of my books, my artwork, my Morse and Sweeney DVDs, and furniture is off. Lifting four Belfast sinks was a two man job and the Bulgarian driver sweated heavily. But the van is loaded and starts its journey today. I shall meet it in Kambos a week today, by when the Greek Hovel might have at least part of a roof under which to store the cargo from England.


2151 days ago

What is God punishing me for? A sneak preview of hell

My one year old son Joshua delights with playing with mobile phones and TV controls. Thus poor Sam Antar got a 3 AM call from me in New York when my son managed to press a few buttons in the right order. Just a few minutes ago I got a phone reminder of something important. I do not actually know how to set such a reminder but Joshua has managed it. At least it was not at 2.58 AM like last time.


3209 days ago

Reasons to divorce the Mrs – Giving money to Simon bloody Cowell of X-Factor

I am not thinking of divorcing the Mrs but if I were I might start with X-Factor. In my single days the cats and I used to watch DVDs of Inspector Morse or, as a real treat, The Sweeney or Foyle. These days the Mrs is the only one smart enough to work out how to use the three remote controls needed to work her ultra-modern TV. As such she has power and that means that the cats have to watch the X-Factor.

To show solidarity with the suffering felines I have occasionally wandered in and, I confess, have become quite hooked as a range of chavs strut their stuff on stage. Of course the real stars of this lack of talent show are the judges, uber-camp Louis Walsh who is nice to everyone, Britain’s leading chanteuse and intellectual heavyweight Ms Cheryl Cole, or whatever she is called these days, an old spice hag and the waspish plutocrat and brains behind this money making machine Simon Cowell.

Watching is, I admit, pretty embarrassing but as we sat glued to Saturday’s final part one the Mrs grabbed her phone. Who are you texting? I asked. “I’m not – I’m voting for Fleur East.” The Mrs had listened to host Dermot and knew that her vote (cost £1.50) really mattered. Ching Ching. More money from Mr Cowell. It got worse…


3825 days ago

Youth Crime Tzar – shocking waste of money

I see that the papers are having a field day with Paris Brown who was hired as a youth crime Czar by Kent police on £15,000 a year to “provide a teenager’s view on policing.” But Paris has apparently spent some time on twitter to boast about binge drinking, drug taking and to make a series of racist and homophobic comments. She should have been in the Sweeney. Inspector Reagan would have felt right at home.

That she is a silly girl is beyond doubt. Apparently she is not quitting and will carry on doing her job. But what is the point of this job? It is not that she should be fired, just that this post should be made redundant. Along with all the other daft non-jobs that our PC police forces create to divert resources away from tedious things like catching criminals and getting them sent to prison.

I wonder what Paris has concluded in her first invaluable report: “The bizzies….er whatever…it’s all my parent’s fault…whatever… know…we just want, like, respect…I’m bored…whatever”

I seem to remember that it was the Kent Police that arrested that bloke for tweeting a picture of a poppy burning. It strikes me that this force is run by complete imbeciles. If they want to hire a “Stop Police wasting money on piffle Czar” I am your man and will catch the first train to Canterbury this afternoon to start closing down the non jobs to try to assist bankrupt Britain to save a few quid. And the first P45 goes to Paris.


3832 days ago

The Sweeney – The Film – 3 out of ten

I managed to get the DVD to work and sat down with a bottle of wine to watch this much derided Ray Winstone film. West Londoners have become East Londoners (how predictable). The Sweeney is enmeshed in battles with internal compliance at all points. That sounds plausible. The robberies and purported crimes were not plausible. The story line was not great. As for the action and sex: Mr Winstone’s stomach and him giving chase in a small four door family car really did not cut the mustard.

Assisted by three quarters of a bottle of wine I sat through to the end but I am sorry to say that the derision was fair. As someone who loves playing old Sweeney DVDs I give this 3 out of ten. Had I been stone cold sober I doubt that I would have been that charitable.


3833 days ago

My Easter Treat – The Sweeney

As you may know I have every episode of the 1970s drama The Sweeney on DVD. The classic Thaw/Waterman series may well be my specialist subject if I get onto the second round of Mastermind having chosen “misleading RNS statements by Sefton Resources 2009-2013” as my first round topic. But for some reason I missed the Ray Winstone movie when it came out last year. I think that is because it was so dreadful that it closed in most cinemas after about one day.

I am braced for it being absolutely dire. But a DVD has been on sale in my local CO-OP for about three weeks at a bargain price with no takers. As I have walked past I have felt an urge to put it out of its misery and buy the damned thing. And today I could resist the urge no longer. And so assuming that I can work out how to use the DVD player, tonight’s post work treat (still another 10 hours to go on that front) will be a grand showing of this great film. I will be back with my thoughts tomorrow.


4002 days ago

Ray Winstone’s East London & The Sweeney 2012

As regular blog readers know I have a boxed set of every episode of The Sweeney – the original 1970s series starring John Thaw and Dennis Waterman. It is one of those DVDs that I can always pull down and watch to cheer me up in bad times. And so I approach the release of the new movie, the Sweeney, starring Ray Winstone in Thaw’s role ( Inspector Regan) with some trepidation.

Part of the appeal of the original series ( other than the violence, the wit and the nostalgia for a past era) is the repartee between Regan, Sergeant Carter (Waterman) and their boss ( the solid and straight Haskins, played by Garfield Morgan). They all come from different backgrounds.