847 days ago
In today’s podcast I discuss freedom of expression with reference to Alistair Stewart, Andrew Monk, Schroders and a whore’s drawers. I look at ValiRx (VAL), the joke that is NEX Exchange Regulation, Oracle Power (ORCP), Andalas Energy (ADL) and Haydale Graphene (HAYD). Finally I defend No Gold ( please donate to the Rogue Bloggers for Woodlarks old chap, HERE) and report back on my Optibiotix (OPTI), Slimbiome weight loss programme.
1806 days ago
I think the last dripping in sweat, post frigana chopping selfie photo was not very flattering. Apparently some of you think that i have multiple chins. Au contraire. That was just the angle. I have not commented on my trouser size for a while but since we are on the subject...
1861 days ago
This is all great news if a tad embarrassing. Very healthy eating, lots of exercise and no booze is definitely helping me shed the pounds. As i wandered back into the hotel elevator yesterday evening I looked and with my trousers slipping down my boxers were clearly visible. However much I hitch up my 36 inch trousers they keep on falling down. What good news.
1973 days ago
I did okay in 2016. The notable win being quitting smoking although that was not something I started until February 15. So I guess I don't need to start my 2017 resolutions right away. that is jolly useful as we still have a bit of Christmas cake and an excellent cheddar cheese from Uncle Chris to finish off. That brings me to resolution one.
2806 days ago
The pictures from my weekly videos say it all...
2823 days ago
The Mrs is back in Bristol already sending me photos of our cats Oakley (three legs) and Tara (four) who she is no doubt hugging to death and spoiling quite outrageously. I am sure that I shall do the same when I head back in a few weeks’ time.
I was delighted when the Mrs was here but it had two drawbacks. Without her I have slipped once again into my no alcohol and one or two Greek salads a day diet. With her I was drinking and eating rather more. And so my weight loss was arrested, in fact reversed a bit. Now I am in overdrive as I have just over three weeks to finish the frigana cutting and so am upping my manual labour rate accordingly.
The other drawback is that whilst my commercial writings (shares) continued almost every day, with the Mrs here I have no time for my personal writings. I enjoy my musings on life at The Greek Hovel far more than financial writing but know that those articles don’t pay the bills. And so I have an awful lot to catch up including two murders in our village of Kambos and my own detention at Kardimili police station. And
2834 days ago
There were three pieces of good news for Tom this week. The arrival in Greece of his Mrs, continuing weight loss and Quindell (QPP) threatening legal action. Tom discusses the third at length in his weekly video postcard.
2846 days ago
I wonder if I am getting a little tedious on this weight loss issue? It was another good day. Just one salmon salad to eat and a good bit of manual labour and a run to boot. I am partly inspired by my guest who insists that she needs to lose 15 lbs. I think that would officially make her a stick insect but there is now a competitive battle.
She went on a far longer run. But then she ate two salads today and a frozen yoghurt! Sin. So I reckon I edged it today as I also want to lose another 15 lbs which would officially make me normal weight.
She can rabbit on for ages about any subject under the sun so I feel that I am justified in mentioning more than occasionally how loose my 34 inch jeans feel. But they really do! I am now 99% confident that I would fit into 32 inch jeans – fighting London Irish waist size – quite comfortably. I can see that a shopping trip to Kalamata looms on Saturday.
I also feel less embarrassed about my body. Do I sound like a real girl here? My guest says that I was developing a bit of a farmer’s tan (elbows downwards) and so I now wander around the hovel topless. Sadly my guest has not followed sit but that is another matter.
My point is that although I am aware that my stomach is still too large – it is the last flab to go – I do not feel embarrassed by it as I would have at higher weights. And I know that slowly it is shrinking. And tomorrow the really hard manual labour starts at the Greek Hovel – the pounds must surely just fall away for both of us?
2854 days ago
I think that with hindsight it was a mistake to try to ride back from Kambos carrying two pots of lavender on the motorbike. But I did, I tried to turn in the main road and I fell of my bike. At 5 miles an hour it was not too painful. Folks rushed from Eleni’s taverna to help pick me and the lavender pots up. I got back on an increasingly battered bike and moved off gingerly.
Biking back along the dirt track to the Greek Hovel is never easy but carrying two lavender pots (in plastic bags), with my confidence dented and with blood trickling from my knee and elbow it was harder than usual.
On the plus side I have given them something to talk about in Eleni’s Kouronis taverna – not a lot happens in Kambos. My reputation as a bit of an odd and clumsy stranger will be enhanced and I suppose seeping blood has to be good for weight loss? Please tell me that is true.
2861 days ago
I am sorry for the delay in sending this over. Challenges? Dealing with Greece’s OTE. I pay the bastards for internet access, my account at the hovel shows I have credit but ….er OTE will not let me use it. Bastards. So I took the afternoon off.
The video is really about the challenges I face here at the Greek Hovel. Aged 46 I have done sod all carpentry since gaining 27% and coming 127/127 in the U4th woodwork exam. I have never ridden a bike. Never barricaded a room against rats, dealt with snakes, showered with a hosepipe, coped with living in a land where I don’t speak the language, the list goes on and on.
But I am enjoying he challenges while getting on with my working life. I also cover the fact that many of the liberal idiots who support Hamas appear to have no knowledge of the history of the region.
PS Having watched this you are now meant to email me and congratulate me on the weight loss!
2864 days ago
When I record my videos each week you are meant to email me to say “Tom you have lost weight – well done!” I should not have to prompt anyone (especially the Mrs). But I have lost weight. Well I can’t measure it since, as I noted two years ago, there are virtually no scales in the whole of Greece but I can do the trouser test!
At my shameful 19 stone 6 pounds peak my waist was a disgraceful 44 inches. At my fighting weight (hooker for London Irish Wild Geese) I was a 32 inch waist. Two years ago in Greece I almost got down to 32 inches. I was within spitting distance.
Back in the UK – and blaming the Mrs for leading me astray - my waist expanded again. On leaving I was in 36 inch jeans and they felt tight. Within a few days my Ireland rugby shorts (from a post London Irish age) were so obviously falling down that they had to be retired. But they do not really count – they come from a plump (Clontarf veterans) era.
However, as their replacement – red swimming shorts - went from tight to comfortably loose I tried the trouser test.
3428 days ago
Britain is getting fatter. The strain of treating a stack of lardbuckets like myself for diabetes (my issue), heart attacks, etc is a very real financial burden. All of that is a given. But calls to ban Frosties ( Labour health spokesman Andy Burnham) and Fried Chicken shops ( general lefty fruitcake and a bit of a lardbucket herself, Dianne Abbot) do not address the problem. Prohibition never works. It fails with drugs, it failed with alcohol in 1920s Chicago and it will fail with Frosties.
3551 days ago
Okay Mars Inc is not sponsoring the caption contest before is pompous lawyers get onto the case. That is what is termed a little joke in Britain. But Mars provided the highlight of the week. Not you understand that I would eat any of their loathsome 260 calorie, 34.6 grammes of sugar and 9.9 grammes of fat bars even though I understand that doing so will help Mars which is committed to promoting healthy and active lifestyles. Instead it was the way that the pompous lawyers acting for the dickheads who run the US giant have tried to stop some Scottish shop from selling its branded “deep fried Mars Bars.” Mars would not wish to be associated with such a product because of its commitment to healthy and active lifestyles. Yup right. You can read the full story here.
Of course the issue of Scottish health problems is not to be ignored. Life expectancy in some parts of urban Scotland is now, at 57, lower than in the Ukraine. The left blames this on poverty, evil capitalists and wicked Tory cuts. Yup right. Folks do not have to spend their welfare cheques on cigarettes, alcohol and deep fried Mars Bars. It is a lifestyle choice. Living off welfare does not force you to eat crap and drink and smoke. This is a matter of personal freedom, choice and responsibility. Giving these folks far bigger welfare cheques would not turn them into non-smoking, tee-total, tofu munchers.
The issue of accepting responsibility for your own destiny (something the Left cannot abide because the State always knows best and working class folk cannot exist without middle class lefties telling them how to improve themselves) is a matter I have discussed before and shall do again. For now here is this week’s caption contest.
3551 days ago
Hat tip @AlbertKuller – This may be an old joke but I had not seen it before and I thought it was funny. Well more amusing than trying to write a book anyway.
3552 days ago
Lawyers for Mars Inc have written to the owners of the Carron Fish Bar in Stonehaven Aberdeenshire warning it not to claim special status for its “Deep Fried Mars Bars” since this is a breach of the EU’s protected food scheme. They will not support this application because the deep fried bar is not healthy. What hypocritical dickheads.
I quote from the lawyers for Mars: “We are really flattered that customers of Carron Fish Bar like our product so much that it has now become a flagship product for the store No application for a protected geographical indication has been filed to date. Should an application be filed, unfortunately, we wouldn’t be able to support it as deep-frying one of our products would go against our commitment to promoting healthy, active lifestyles.“
Oh let the saints preserve me. Firstly
3571 days ago
As someone who now has a healthy Body Mass Index (under 25) for the first time in his life I have a real interest in fatness. And so I am intrigued to discover a website showing just how fat Americans are. The US is the fattest industrialised nation on this planet (a few freak 3rd world places beat it for special reasons) with 33.9% of Americans defined as “obese” – that is having a BMI of more than 30. The percentage of Americans who are obese or overweight is close to two 66%.
The website is packed with data and can be found here.
What is baffling is that since 2002 Americans who are obese have been able to get tax breaks for special healthy food and weight loss programmes. Do not tell Mitt Romney’s horse
3576 days ago
I get bashed by some for going on about my weight. But when you are diagnosed as diabetic, told that your weight is enough of an issue to dramatically reduce life expectancy, etc these things do sort of matter to you. In that vein, I managed to find a pair of scales today and weighed in at 13 st 3 llbs. That gives me a Body Mass Index of 24.5 – officially a “healthy” weight.
In context, this is the first time since I was 18 that my BMI has been below 25. I am now 44. In terms of BMI I have gone from 36 (clinically ultra obsese and so grotesque that I do not want to think about it) at my peak to 24.5. In terms of weight I have now lost 32.4% of my peak weight – 6 stone and 3 llbs.
If you are fat, weight is a lifelong battle so I am not about to go out and eat 58 cream pastries to celebrate. I still have a mental target of 12 st 3 llbs – a BMI of 22.5. That may be unrealistic, I have heavy bones. But I still have a bit of a tummy and so I would be aiming to start September at sub 13 st (BMI 24 or lower). One battle almost won. A couple more to go.
3587 days ago
Er… when it is in one of the countries which has, or has had “issues” with brave Hellas: Turkey, the FYR of Macedonia and here in Albania. Last night for supper I wanted, naturally a salad. A tomato salad, that is tomatoes with er… more tomatoes, was not really going to assist with meeting my 5 a day target. And so I ordered the only other salad going, a “Country salad.”
And for less than 2 Euro I enjoyed the best (and cheapest) Greek salad I have devoured since leaving London a month ago. Why is it termed a “country” salad? Is that because it is normally eaten by country folks rather than townies? Or is it a reference to another country, a country that dare not speak its name here in Albania. I have no idea.
PS The chair in my hotel room has just collapsed beneath me. Clearly in Albanian terms I am still grossly overweight. Better stick to the country salads.
3590 days ago
Finding a set of scales to weigh yourself seems impossible here in Greece. I have asked at hotel after hotel but with no joy. I tried a couple of beauty salons and a place where you stick your feet in a tank of fish but no joy. It is as if in a sort of medieval fairy tale like way, the fat crooks of Pasok and New Democracy who have for the past 30 years eaten all the pies while pretending to run the country, had purged the land of weighing machines. This was a desperate attempt to ensure that no-one could check out how grossly overweight they were after all those pies, as the economy moved into the latter stages of anorexia.
But today I struck gold and weighed myself in a small chemists shop. And dear readers .. I am now just 2 lb away from being officially what the British Heart Foundation describes as a “normal healthy” weight. I shall be off on a run later today to celebrate. Putting this in context, my peak weight was 19 stone six pounds. I am now 13 stone 10 pounds. Put another way
3601 days ago
Health Officials never tire of telling us how to run our lives and seeking ways of flushing taxpayer’s cash down the toilet. Rarely does it have any effect other than to add the flab that is Central Government and all its works. Today’s claim (plucked from thin air and with absolutely no evidence to support it whatsoever) is that the imposition of VAT on 5 a side soccer will make Britain fatter. You doubt that health officials are daft enough to make such a claim? It is in the Daily Telegraph so it must be true. I quote:
3603 days ago
I am sure that some of you are gripped by the impending Olympics. Perhaps you are turning out to watch some fat school kid carry the torch past your house, or carrying your own fake torch in a local celebration. The Government media machine tells us that we are all being swept up by a wave of enthusiasm so helping bring us together as communities and as a nation. Count me out. The whole event offends me in almost every conceivable way. I know that I am not entirely alone in my way of thinking. One person whose thoughts are always interesting and almost always correct (a reverse Polly Toynbee) expressed their strong views on this matter to me yesterday. So that makes two of us. I am sure that whatever the spinmeisters of City Hall and Whitehall say, there must be more.
For what it is worth, when the Government spin machine keeps on repeating that the whole nation is gripped by Olympic fever, my instinct is to assume that it is not.
3603 days ago
Some folks seem to think that I am swanning around Greece in luxury, just relaxing. That is not my style. For me it is a back pack and buses and trains, boats only if needed. I have generally been a mainland sort of person and have in fact visited only three islands, Corfu, Crete and Euboea in my 44 and a half years on this planet. I hope that in a week or so I shall start adding to that list. I have never island hopped and now seems as good a time as any. I await advice from Despy as to where to head to… all is on hold until then. Despy, please note.
I am now in Corfu. The 8 hour bus journey from Athens was not comfortable. At least buses have air conditioning these days but I seemed to be surrounded by very tall men and there was nowhere to rest my legs without unintentionally playing footsie. The roads switch from new EU funded superhighways to windy 2 track roads from a long time ago. As such there were bumps pretty much all the way making reading or sleeping impossible.
3605 days ago
I relayed to you my delight as a weight obsessive in being told that I was “looking good” by a portly and bearded associate – a man whose beard is a bit reminiscent of that of Mr Twit (Roald Dahl) although without the various bits of food entangled in it. But today comes an unprompted comment from a woman who is, without doubt, the most attractive woman in corporate broking in London and she says that I am “looking good” too.
No offense to my portly bearded friend but being complemented by a goddess trumps your complement and motivates me, in a way that only a formerly fat weight obsessive can be motivated, to go for a run through the streets of Athens to shed a few more pounds. Since it is 45 degrees out there I will probably get as far as the street corner before collapsing but on the back of such praise, and feeling a bit guilty about having an extra glass of white wine last night, I have no choice. My next article is postponed for a while.
3611 days ago
Two new photos of middle aged men appeared on this website today. That of Buster Mottram was of a man who was middle aged even when young both in appearance and attitude and so I exclude him. The one in black and white was, I am sure you all know, of the German Philosopher Nietzsche. What has he got to do with buying shares do you ask?
3612 days ago
I had to post certain documents back to London and so was forced to visit my local Post Office. It was even more instructive than the Bus Station visit of a few days ago. I should say that I ran there (one mile) in the burning heat and managed to run half way back. As part of the weight loss campaign I was quite proud of that.
Arriving at the Post Office which serves a small suburb of not a very large town I stumbled in a sweaty wreck. The place is open from 8.30 AM until 2.30 PM five days a week meaning that its staff (in this State owned enterprise) have to put in a back breaking 30 hour week. They are probably paid for 14 months a year and get to retire at 55 but that is not the point. Did I mention how many staff were crammed into this small office? Five. That is one member of staff for every 1.25 customers that I observed during my 20 minute visit – I needed time to catch my breath, have a cigarette etc.
3613 days ago
I am aware that Call Me Dave does not know the price of a pint of milk. But I wonder if he has any idea what a bottle of sun tan lotion costs? As a fair skinned fellow I am well advised to slap on the Factor 30 and as I am now venturing out for a daily run, swim and for a bit of lying in the sun I thought I better buy something. So after the morning run I did just that and handed over a 20 Euro note expecting most of it back. Bloody hell. It was 19 Euros for spray on and 16 Euros for cream. Either…
3619 days ago
Not a reference to life in a Polly Toynbee dictatorship but another day of frustration with my laptops. Both – having failed yesterday – started working today. But this evening laptop number one just went on strike again and so I resorted to laptop number two. A lovely piece on football was saved. And I was half way through another classic diatraibe against Bono ( and also Polly Toynbee) when it announced that it was going into hibernation. What the hell does that mean? I was utterly unable to stop it hibernating and having shut itself down it refused to play ball again.
As such, with the words fresh in my mind, I have trekked off to an internet cafe. A rather unlovely girl with a shorts which are far too short for her chubby legs is plying me with diet coke as I rewrite my earlier epics. Before I start the book I fear that I must invest in a new laptop. At least, on the plus side, I have had to put on jeans for the trek to the internet cafe and it feels as if my 32 inch waist pair are just that little bit looser. Remember: peak waistline was 44 and 32 is the lowest number since I was 17. Target is 28 inches and my diet of cereals and salads and intense exercise is starting to pay dividends.