Wednesday 25/11/09

At least I'm trying to write beautiful things today!

Yeah, yeah, I know yesterday’s blog was a bit of a middle aged rant.. but in my defence,  I did make a  promise to all of  you, that I would produce something a little more harminous today.  Anyway, today the word beautiful has been swirling around my mind.  So this is what I’ve done with it…

B e

E ntertaining

A rtistic

U nderstanding

T rustful



U seful

L oving.

“He who surrenders freedom, in return for security, deserves neither.”

Rupert, Barrister

“If you want to be happy for an hour, get drunk, if you want to be happy for a year, fall in love, if you want to be happy for the rest of your life, start gardening.”

Irina, Student, Russia

“Never waste a good crisis.”

David, Accountant

“In victory you deserve champagne, in defeat you need it!” – Napoleon

“Wine is bottled poetry.” – Robert Louis Stevenson

“Compromises are for relationships, not wine.” – Sir Robert ScottCaywood

Mark & wife. I received these quotes via e-mail, from Mark and his wife. (former passengers who I dropped off at wine bar.) No doubt a few glasses of wine helped them recite some of the above quotes…

Tuesday 24/11/09

Does unfair parking enforcement frustrate you?
Does unfair parking enforcement frustrate you?


If ever a London speech radio presenter is struggling to conjure up a subject to talk about, he or she will raise the subject of unfairly issued parking tickets, and within minutes the radio station’s telephone switchboard will be jammed with disgruntled Londoners battling it out for an opportunity to rage anger at their local council’s traffic department! As licensed London cabbies, we commit the cardinal sin of having legitimate number plates, and as a result are a very easy nick. For me, (a man who tries hard to turn negative situations in to positive ones) the only positive thing I can get out of these tickets is the opportunity to do some creative writing. By this I mean compiling appeals (often comical) on behalf of my friends and I. Recently, I was listening to a speech radio phone in show, when this very issue was mentioned. What was comical about the show, was the names that Londoners used to refer to their relevant local authority traffic departments. The residents of Camden refer to their parking enforcement department as the CAMDEN TALIBAN, Hackney’s finest refer to theirs as the HACKNEY HALFWITS and last but not least is the Westminster’s residents, who refer to their beloveds as the WESTMINSTER WEASELS! One caller even claimed to have moved his multimillion-pound business out of London as a result of (as he puts it) the flaming Gestapo!  Unfortunately a disturbing pattern seems to be emerging, with some local authority parking departments and private parking companies. It is known as the “MISSING LETTER SCENARIO”  i.e. letters which they claim to have sent, but never seem to be received by the appellant. This will normally happen, at the stage where the appellant is waiting for an answer as to whether his or her appeal is going to be accepted or rejected. Why would traffic enforcement people do this? Possibly because statistics prove that a very high percentage of people who do appeal against a parking ticket; end up winning their case.  So you receive no answer as to whether your appeal had been successful or unsuccessful, what you do receive is a letter saying that you have ignored their appeal decision reply and have missed the opportunity to pay a discounted charge. When you ring the relevant department to enquire, (that’s if they supply a number) they will tell you that the appeal was rejected and a letter sent out to you, they will then bring up the rejection letter on their computer screen, (COMPILED BUT POSSIBLY NOT SENT?) When the drivers explain that the letter was never received, the departments will ever say, “It was sent, and it’s now your problem”, blame the postal system, or just be plain arrogant. Had this been a one off incident with one local authority or private parking company, I would not have bothered to compile this piece, but its now becoming a regular occurrence. You’ve been warned. On a lighter note, I will try hard to dig out some of my more comical parking appeals and share them with you in a future blog!

PS – Tomorrow, I promise NOT to be a grumpy middle-aged old man, and compile a more harmonious peace!

Friday 20/11/09

“An inch is better than a mile, in the right direction.”

Ed, London

“May you get to heaven, half an hour before the devil knows you’re dead.”


“Intelligence is a gift, not a privilege.”

“There’s no place like home.”

Paul, 33, Healthcare

“You never know when love is around you, often it sits next to you and you don’t see it, opening your eyes and heart can be the most rewarding feeling.”

“Home is where the heart is, life is where your head is !”

Andrew, Kentish Town, Learning Specialist

Autumn in London, Fantastic..
Autumn in London, Fantastic..

Friday 6/11/09

Take the road less taxed!
A prankster has rearranged a road sign, his or her intentions, being to divert traffic away from the congestion charge zone.


Well gang, you should be proud of me for getting the above Shot!  It meant me having to dash out of the cab and endure a freak rainstorm, but it was worth every raindrop that pounded on my head and clothes! I saw this rearranged sign as I was navigating my way around the busy City Road roundabout. And it completely defused the apprehension of the shift that lay ahead. I am always apprehensive at the beginning of my shift, not because of a fear of people, but a because of a fear of no people putting their hand into the air and hailing my cab! Eventually someone does hail your cab and the evening adventure begins! However, when I saw the spray can work of a certain prankster, any tensions or doubts I had about Friday night’s shift soon evaporated! My priorities immediately changed, finding my first passenger was put on the backburner and snapping the above sign became paramount (this type of art work is removed very quickly by the authorities) So with my comical snap secured and my tensions now all but nonexistent, the rest of the shift soon fell into place, and was aptly rounded off with a dance with friends at a lively after hours North London nightclub.

Could Salvador Dali be the phantom spray can artist ?

“Measure twice, cut once.”

Barry, Advertising

“When governments get into difficulty, all they do is abolish the people, and elect another.”


“Why are we dying to live, if we’re living to die.”

“We love Mark the cabby!”

Andrew, Cyprus student

“What makes a good time, is a good attitude.”

Messy B, Student, Cyprus

“When one door closes, another one opens.”

“Life is sweet.”

Butt K, 54, Kenya

“Be positive every time.”

Aloyna and Roman, Russia

Thursday 5/11/09


Just for today I will try to live through this day only & not tackle my whole life problem at once. I can do something for twelve hours that would appall me if I felt that I had to keep it up for a lifetime.

Just for today I will be happy. Most folks are as happy as they make up their minds to be.

Just for today I will adjust myself to what is & not try to adjust everything else to my desires. I will take my luck as it comes & fit myself into it.

Just for today I will try to strengthen my mind. I will study; I will learn something useful; I will not be a mental loafer; I will read something that requires effort, thought & concentration.

Just for today I will exercise my soul in three ways: I will do somebody a good turn & not get found out; if anybody knows of it, it will not count; I will do at least two things I don’t want to do just for exercise. I will not show anyone that my feelings are hurt; they may be hurt, but today I will not show it.

Just for today I will be agreeable. I will look as good as I can, dress becomingly, talk low, act courteously, criticize not one bit, not find fault with anything & not try to improve or regulate anybody except myself.

Just for today I will have a program. I may not follow it exactly, but I will have it. I will save myself from two pests: hurry & indecision.

Just for today I will have a quiet half hour all by myself & relax. During this half hour, sometime, I will try to get a better perspective on my life.

Just for today I will be unafraid. I will enjoy that which is beautiful & will believe that as I give to the world, so the world will give to me.

Emily, unemployed.  Emily mentioned to me , that it would be nice if  I added the inspirational & motivational thought “just for today” to the website. This prayer is popular with people suffering with alcohol and addiction issues.