Thursday 31 December 2009

2009 lottery emails omnibus

Each week I send an email to members of the lottery syndicate. I sometimes include a joke or observation, and I usually assign myself a joke middle name. These are my names from 2009:

Mon 05/01/2009
Richard "Get back to work" B

Mon 12/01/2009
Richard "My turn to win next" B

Mon 19/01/2009
A week when I had a slight cough
Richard "pleurisy" B

Mon 26/01/2009
Richard "monotony" B

Mon 02/02/2009
Richard "frosty the snowman" B

Mon 09/02/2009
Richard "still waiting" B

Mon 16/02/2009
Richard "February 14th - invariably a disappointment" B

Mon 23/02/2009
Richard "We have a winner" B

Mon 02/03/2009
The week after Date Report 4 was written
Richard "crash-and-burn" B

Mon 09/03/2009
One of the Barbie Doll's milestone birthdays
Richard "15.3 years younger than barbie" B

Mon 16/03/2009
Richard "Show me the cakes" B

Tue 17/03/2009
Richard "Life's a Lottery" B

Mon 23/03/2009
Richard "We'll win next week" B

Mon 30/03/2009
A week when one of our members should have won, but wasn't paid up
Richard "you know the rules" B

Mon 06/04/2009
The week I was invited to join a Grand National sweepstake
Richard "500 to 1" B

Tue 14/04/2009
Richard "Post Bank-Holiday Stress Disorder" B

Mon 20/04/2009
Richard "Come and see me play on Friday" B

Mon 27/04/2009
Richard "only just watched 'The Godfather' for the first time" B

Tue 05/05/2009
After having watched 'The Godfather II'
Richard "3 hours 20 is too long for a feature film" B

Tue 12/05/2009
Richard "long weekend" B

Mon 18/05/2009
After the first time I was ever invited to an after-show party. It was after a show that I had played.
Richard "after-show party" B

Tue 26/05/2009
Richard "long weekend" B

Mon 01/06/2009
Richard "gig on friday" B

Mon 08/06/2009
Richard "weekend rock-star" B

Mon 15/06/2009
Richard "back to work" B

Mon 22/06/2009
Richard "The raffle organiser wouldn't give me her phone number, but I did win a cuddly polar bear" B

Mon 29/06/2009
The week when I was first introduced to fantastic mock hair-metal band "Steel Panther"
Richard "Death To All But Metal" B

Mon 06/07/2009
Richard "I've got a steam powered bath toy" B

Mon 13/07/2009
Richard "Should have invited new members last week" B

Mon 20/07/2009
Richard "post viral fatigue" B

Wed 22/07/2009
Richard "lunchtime consitutional" B

Mon 27/07/2009
Richard "day off" B

Mon 10/08/2009
Richard "Ladbrokes" B

Mon 17/08/2009
Richard "Up to date with my hoovering, washing-up, and ironing" B

Mon 24/08/2009
A week when I wasn't too happy with the band's bass player
Richard "Either learn the songs OR print out the music BEFORE the rehearsal" B

Wed 16/09/2009
A week when the girl singer out of the band took charge of my text flirting with the girl from the North.
Richard "playing Christian to a lesbian Cyrano de Bergerac" B

After a week in Corfu at an all inclusive destination resort
Richard "a week behind" B

Mon 28/09/2009
After a week in Corfu at an all inclusive destination resort
Richard "Nobody leaves the resort" B

Mon 05/10/2009
Richard "I slow-danced with the woman of my dreams at a wedding. Sadly she was the bride and I wasn't the groom" B

Mon 12/10/2009
Richard "Making a meal for a single woman tonight" B

Mon 19/10/2009
The week when ex rock star Troy Tate tought me to play a wierd heavy blues version of "Come Together"
Richard "He got walrus gumboot" B

Tue 27/10/2009
Richard "Got to buy a birthday present for a woman I hardly know" B

Mon 09/11/2009
Richard "I'm in the money" B

Tue 10/11/2009
Richard "Grommet" B

Mon 16/11/2009
Richard "" B

Mon 23/11/2009
Richard "MacGyver" B **
** To understand the relevance of my middle name this week you have to know that I effected a temporary but workable repair to the return spring of a drummer's broken bass drum pedal using the elastic of a pair of talismanic knickers which had previously been thrown at him while he played.

Mon 30/11/2009
I took my new girlfriend to  a show I played at the Cherry Tree, and there was an unseasonable downpoor on the way home.
Richard "sex, floods, and rock'n'roll" B

Tue 08/12/2009
I ordered a new Citroen Nemo combo van
Richard "captain nemo-multispace" B

Tue 08/12/2009
Richard "Lottery" B

Tue 15/12/2009
Richard "decorations up" B

Tue 29/12/2009
Richard "gin and rosehip syrup" B

Wednesday 28 October 2009

Lost or Stolen


Inconveniently I have lost, cancelled, and found my bank and credit card (in that order). What with the postal strike and needing new pin numbers it's going to be quite a time before I've got access to my own money.

If nobody objects I'm going to borrow £50 out of the lottery syndicate. That will leave enough money to buy this week's tickets, and to pay the bonus ball prize if somebody wins it, but most of the advanced payments will be living in my pocket.

Does anybody have any objections or require any additional guarantees?

Richard "Bernie Madoff" B

Tuesday 15 September 2009


Te celebrate taking some money out of the lottery syndicate this week, I've bought (4kg of) grapes. They're in the kitchen. Do help yourselves.

Richard "5 a day" B

Monday 14 September 2009

Stupidest Thing I've Said in the Last Couple of Weeks

Sorry? You're what? You're from "The Nerth"? Oh... You mean "The North".

Richard "I left a message on the answering machine, but she never called me back" B

Wednesday 9 September 2009

Date Report 5

I've actually had to do some work at work today so I haven't written a
date report, however I'll give you this little summary

  • Pretty
  • Talkative
  • "Ramones" Handbag
  • Prepared to take the piss
  • Encyclopaedic knowledge of popular music
  • Comedy nerthern accent
  • Local
  • Age appropriate
  • 3 children by 2 different fathers
  • Acrimoniously estranged ex-husband
  • Never driven a car
  • Overweight
General interest
  • Moved from Hull to Exeter to escape vociferous jahova's witness upbringing
  • Manic depressive brother taking cocktail of strong psycho-active medication
  • Unemployed
  • Owns exactly 3 pairs of shoes
  • Once went on a date with a millionare "life coach" and wanted to hit him.

Monday 7 September 2009


I live alone and do not own a cat. On Friday night I slept fitfully, I was woken several time by dreams about cats, cats mewing, cats fighting, cats scratching, and on one occasion I immagined I was being crushed in my bed by a warm heavy wraith. I awoke, unrefreshed, on Saturday morning, to find a cat trapped in my house with me.

Richard "I got a girl's telephone number" B

This was written in the week that Marie's hot mate gave me her phone number.

Tuesday 1 September 2009


Odd observation
Most of the pork products in the supermarket seem to say "Danish" on them, but I also discovered this weekend that "Danish" is a style of white sliced bread. Is Denmark the ancestral home of the bacon sandwich?

Richard "guerrilla sound technician" B

Saturday 28 February 2009

Date Report 4

Executive SummaryThe investigation team finds that the crash-and-burn of 27th February 2009 was entirely avoidable, and that the cause was pilot error during night-out preparation and pre-date checks. Despite finding that Pilot Redacted alone is wholly responsible for the crash-and-burn, they also commend him that no lives were lost, and that no serious humiliation was endured.

Date PF-RJB-20090227(1) was a re-scheduling of date PF-RJB-20090223(1). The plan for the original date was filed with the civil dating authority on 11th February 2009. The original date was to convene at the Fortesque, Mutley Plane (FMP) at nineteen forty five hours (local) on Monday 23rd February. The date was re-scheduled at noon thirty (local) on the day of the original date. The civil dating authority recorded the reason for the postponement as "I have to go to the police and give a statement about an assault I witnessed". The date was re-scheduled to convene at FMP at nineteen forty five hours (local) on Friday 27th February 2009. The stated purpose of the date was "a drink"

Pilot Redacted first met Redacted at the Plymouth Musicians' Collective. Upon asking her name she told him "You might as well call me 'Pissflaps', everybody else does". Pilot Redacted subsequently conversed with Redacted on several occasions at the Plymouth Musicians' Collective, occasionally in pubs, and at the Maker Sunshine Festival where they met by chance. On one occasion in early February at the PMC Pilot Redacted asked Redacted "I know that I don't barely know you, but would you like to come out for a drink with me one night?" Redacted replied in the affirmative and took down Pilot Redacted's mobile telephone number. After nearly a full week of radio silence the original date PF-RJB-20090223(1) was arranged by text message. The locale of the date was chosen as Mutley Plane because Redacted lives there, and because it coincided with one of Pilot Redacted's favoured routes - the 22A. Pilot Redacted asked Redacted to state an address where he would pick her up, or to name a pub where they would meet. She confidently selected FMP, and the date plan was filed.

Crash and burn
Pilot Redacted spent much of the afternoon on unrelated motorcycle maintenance work. He started the standard pre-date preparations of shaving, showering, and dressing at such a time that he would have fewer than five minutes to spare before the scheduled departure of service 22A. At this point he didn't have enough cash for his bus fare, let alone enough to sustain an evening of drinking. An unexpected telephone call from his friend Redacted took precious minutes out of the already scant contingency. A small queue at the cash point, and the untimely realization that he would have to purchase a low value item from the local shop in order to procure coinage for the bus fare meant that he arrived at the bus stop running, out of breath, and after the scheduled departure time. The bus arrives moments after Pilot Redacted and took him without incident to Mutley Plane.

Date takeoff was textbook perfect. Pilot Redacted arrived at FMP 20 seconds before the scheduled start time and checked diligently but not obsessively that Redacted was not already present. He bought himself a drink and Redacted arrived while he was still at the bar. He bought her a drink and the couple settled themselves at a table and proceeded to make small talk for 10 or 20 minutes. The table where they sat had 4 chairs and room for 6 or more people. Pilot Redacted was delighted to find that Redacted chose to drink real ale, and had selected a traditional pub with a friendly atmosphere, a good selection of bitters and ales, and an excellent jukebox.

Redacted is tall, at most 2 inches shorter than pilot Redacted's 6 feet, and largely built. Earlobes are pierced, and the holes stretched to an approximate 1 inch diameter. The lower lip, tongue, and upper gum are pierced and display stainless steel jewellery. Tattoos were visible on her wrists, and have previously been observed on the upper margin of her left breast. Pilot Redacted immediately re-confirmed his suspicion that he didn't find her in the least attractive, and moreover found her mildly frightening. During the conversation it transpired that she is a decade junior to pilot Redacted. A great deal of her previous experience, and a good majority of her stories relate to political activism, rallies, fundraising, and publicity for various worthy causes. A lot of this political activism was carried out under the auspices of various students' unions. Pilot Redacted was struck by the impression that he was drinking with a flesh-and-blood re-creation of fictional student activist Milly Tant from the pages of early 90's Viz magazine.

Redacted is employed as a barmaid at FMP and consequently knows all the staff and several of the drinkers there. Shortly after the couple met 2 men asked to join them, Redacted eagerly accepted and quickly introduced them to pilot Redacted. Throughout the evening several more people joined the group and Redacted spent more and more time speaking with them and ignoring pilot Redacted who knew no-one else present. One of the later arrivals was a friend of Redacted whom she had specifically arranged to meet at FMP. At one point during the evening Redacted and one of her friends left the table to smoke in the beer garden without even asking Pilot Redacted whether he smoked, let alone whether he would care to join them.

Pilot Redacted felt that he had been ignored all night and left the group at the end of drinking-up time. Although no black box evidence was recovered from the scene, the investigation understands that his parting words to Redacted were "Thank you very much, you've got my text number, get in touch if you want to do it again." The investigation team concurs with the pilot that this struck an acceptible balance between politeness, and making it clear that he had no intention of trying to organize a similar date in the future.

Additional failure
When Redacted re-scheduled the original date she was very apologetic. In an attempt to foster more conversation, and to take advantage of both her guilt and her needlework prowess pilot Redacted asked Redacted, a keen knitter, to make a small repair to one of his jumpers. Redacted readily accepted and took from pilot Redacted a genuine Guernsey sweater which was starting to fray at the neck. The sweater is both dear to pilot Redacted and valuable as it is very high quality, virtually waterproof, and an indispensable part of his motorcycling attire. At the time of preparing this report the sweater is still with Redacted, and no further communication has taken place between them. It seems likely that social awkwardness may prevent the return of the sweater, even unmended.

ConclusionsThe date should never have taken place. It should have been clear to pilot Redacted that it was a dangerous misadventure to ask out a woman whom he didn't fancy at all. The investigation team finds that pilot Redacted alone is wholly responsible for this reason. The investigation team finds that sexual frustration and boundless optimism were contributory factors in the crash-and-burn.

There should have been no doubt that Redacted and pilot Redacted moved in different social strata and subcultures from the second she told him her nickname. This impression should have been reinforced by the clearly visible tattoos and piercings, and by the mention of the assault. Furthermore it should have been evident from even the most cursory visual inspection that she was neither "age appropriate" nor attractive to him.

Pilot Redacted's failure to have correct of sufficient money for the bus, and his poor pre-date scheduling, are indicative of general incompetence, but the investigation team finds that this was neither a cause nor a contributory factor in the failure of the date.

The investigation team finds that the awkward double negative in pilot Redacted's question when he asked Redacted out was unacceptable, but recognize that the question was framed quickly, and in a stressful situation.

The team finds it beyond belief that pilot Redacted would give to Redacted a valuable and frequently used sweater when he didn't know her at all. We find that boundless optimism, and a desire to have the sweater mended quickly are contributory factors in the additional failure.

  1. Start getting ready for all social engagements early enough that you have a few minutes to spare.
  2. Don't ask out women whom you find unattractive or frightening.
  3. Conduct a first date at a venue where a degree of privacy is likely. Restaurants are ideal, cinema auditoria are acceptable, as are pubs when neither participant is expecting to meet a large group of friends.
  4. Don't give out valuable, important, or sentimental items to people you don't know.

Saturday 31 January 2009

lucky dip


Today the syndicate says a fond farwell to Redacted, who is leaving us to spend his pound a week in more productive ways.

From now on the bonus ball pot will grow by £15 per week, but we will only be buying 7 lottery tickets.
I would like to discuss the idea that we start buying "lucky dip" tickets, rather than using a fixed set of numbers. This has the following advantages:
  1. I can buy the tickets anytime, even if I don't have our numbers written down.
  2. I don't have to fill in a new slip, or have a new "fastpay ticket" printed whenever the syndicate gets/loses members.
  3. We won't have a particular set of numbers to regret in the unlikely event that the tickets weren't bought.
It has the following disadvantages:
  1. Our numbers would be different every week, so you would have to trust me to check the tickets correctly
  2. Our syndicate agreement would be out of date, so I'd have to re-write it and have you all sign all over again.
  3. The amount of overlap between our tickets would be out of our control, so we would lose the microscopically tiny control we have over the odds/returns on winning multiple small prizes from the same drawn numbers.
Please let me know if you think changing to "lucky dip" is a good or bad idea.

Richard "quorum" B

Thursday 15 January 2009



Today the syndicate also says farewell, for a second time, to Redacted and lucky bonus ball 13. The bonus ball pot will stand at £14 on Monday, and will grow by £14 each week. We are still buying 7 lines on the lottery each week.

Richard "Everybody leaves me" B