Greetings from Scotland

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Gwyneth M905
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Postby Gwyneth M905 » Mon Oct 20, 2008 11:19 am

Iain, Welcome to Webderland! :-D
Even posters like me who post frequently for a while and then disappear for months are welcome here. It's a wonderful forum filled with very, very smart people who love to talk Ellison and other topics. (I have to dog-paddle to keep up.)
I'd especially like to invite you to come over to the "Moving Finger" board and post on the "Shadows of Eternity" thread -- it's a round robin....er....story... where each poster is only allowed four words per post. Loads of fun and terribly silly. Read through the whole thing and it's a hoot!

Ok, I'm going to ask a terribly prejudiced question. Being from Scotland, do you like single malt scotch? My favorite was Glenmorangie, and Speyside distilleries in general. Do you have any favorites you'd recommend?

Slainte! and Welcome,
Gwyneth

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Jan
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Postby Jan » Mon Oct 20, 2008 11:27 am

By the way, Gwynie's not an alcoholic, she's now down to one glass of scotch after work on most days.

Gwyneth M905
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Postby Gwyneth M905 » Mon Oct 20, 2008 11:54 am

Yeah, I used to have my wee dram with breakfast, but that was before that unfortunate incident with the Eggs Benedict..... ;-)

reddragon70
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Postby reddragon70 » Mon Oct 20, 2008 12:18 pm

Three a day? You do realise that its incredibly hard to type and drive a train at the same time dont you? Oh crap did I just say that??? Hope my boss doesnt read this... Ermmm Hacker??? Errrr Hacked account... thats it... This was NOT me. Some big boys did it and ran away?

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Jan
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Postby Jan » Mon Oct 20, 2008 12:45 pm

Yes, three a day, or nine Frank Church type shorties.

Gwyneth M905
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Postby Gwyneth M905 » Mon Oct 20, 2008 1:31 pm

Jan, you've been a very naughty Webderlander to Iain...
Don't encourage him to model Frank's shorties.
Besides, then he'd have to throw chocolate eggs at the rest of us.... :twisted:

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Peggy
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for visiting

Postby Peggy » Mon Oct 20, 2008 6:12 pm

I highly recommend Blair Athol distillery in Pitlochry, for one main reason.

Many distilleries in Scotland produce whisky used in blends, and often have their bottling plus the blend available for tasting.

When I visited, Blair Atholl had all the individual whiskys used in the Bell's blend availble. :) I believe it wasd 30+. Even just sampling 4 or 5 individual components I was able to taste a full spectrum of regions and styles.

I couldn't find a home webpage but here are several basic descriptions:
http://www.uisge.com/ud/blairathol.html
http://www.discovering-distilleries.com/blairathol
http://www.scotchwhisky.net/distillerie ... _athol.htm
"And if you're like me, you need hope, coffee and melody..." - Robbie Seay Band, "New Day"

reddragon70
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Postby reddragon70 » Tue Oct 21, 2008 6:28 am

9 stories? Hmmmm Well I once did write a short article for a fanzine dedicated to the brittish author Robert Rankin alll about life in the railways of the UK, but after reading it myself I decided it was better not to submit it. Partly because its was most likely highly libelous and would have me in court so fast my feet wouldnt touch the ground. Mostly however because I really doubt anyone would have believed a word of it...

reddragon70
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Postby reddragon70 » Tue Oct 21, 2008 6:32 am

I have never been to the Blair Athol distillery as far as I can remember. I have been to a couple of other ones though. There was one that for reasons both historical and prosaic, places a dead mouse into the mash of barley. Apparantly a couple of hundred years ago after making batch a dead mouse was found inside the mash. That particular batch was reputed to have been particularily good and so ever since then the distillery have deliberately put a mouse in (dont worry it gets boiled and is dead already) to maintain this fabled flavour. Strange but true.

cynic
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Postby cynic » Tue Oct 21, 2008 9:33 am

reddragon70 wrote:ever since then the distillery have deliberately put a mouse in (dont worry it gets boiled and is dead already) to maintain this fabled flavour. Strange but true.


dead of old age? euthanized?

scientific method at its best :cry:

mike

reddragon70
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Postby reddragon70 » Sat May 02, 2009 5:27 pm

Well it looks like my life has reached one of those great junctions. What to do? I have been in the employ of Scotrail, the main rail travel company in Scotland, for 18 and a half years. MOst of it was pretty good, the last two years have not. In fact I have hated just about every minute of it.

Now I find myself being stressed, harrassed, screwed over and generally treated like a moron. My last ray of hope was when a vacancy appeared in the training department, basically teaching people to be train drivers, and naturally I applied. That was about 11 months ago now. Not a word. Nothing. Last I heard was from the head of HR when she said there were "Big changes". No shit. They made 40 managers redundant with huge pay offs and seem to have frozen all recruitment unless its at the entry level as they keep sacking the old hands who have any experience or knowledge.

As the little guage inside my head reaches the red zone I am seriously thinking there must be better than this somewhere. Surely there has to be something I can do. Well the good lady wife has suggested I do a distance learning degree and try to get into teaching. I'll be honest and say I love the idea, I have wanted to be a teacher for a long time (blame Goodbye Mr Chips).

The only problem is its a huge gamble. I cant afford to quit my job, I have a morgage to pay etc. but I am willing to work at it while I do my current job. If that is I can manage the hours I work (really nasty shifts) and my college work. Not to mention the costs involved. If it pays off I would lose a small amount of money but not an insurmountable one.

Is it worth the risk? Should I stay or should I go (as The Clash once said)?

paul
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Postby paul » Tue May 12, 2009 7:15 am

Red, to use a quote often seen here, follow your bliss. Too often we stop ourselves for whatever reason, and we regret it later.

It sounds as though you have a good grip on the practicalities of the situation. Work the terrible job while going for the other job if you must, just as long as you've decided it's really what you want to do. If the loss of money is small enough that you believe you can work with it, I see no downside.

My wife and I hold down three to four jobs. My job is okay and good, not high dollar, but it gives me time to write. I write and make not a farthing (right now) from it, but I'm far happier than when I worked other jobs that took all my time. Same with my Kat. Her full-time job makes us the money, but she works part-time at a little crafty store, not so much for the needed money (though it helps), but because of the proximity to materials and creative people, and that makes her far happier than the job he had at the computer company, making literally twice the money and crying/dreading going to work every day.

Not trying to turn this to me, Red. I just wanted to say that knowing what makes you happy, and figuring out how to achieve it while keeping a roof over your head, is worth some awful obstacles, terrible days and busywork. I suspect you already knew that. If something has made you happy for 18 years, but the last two have been miserable enough to contemplate throwing people (and yourself) into a wood-chipper, then say thanks for the memories, but I gotta go now.
Your blood-pressure and stomach acids won't be forgiving; your mind will let you know it's happy.

Just my 2¢.
The medium is the message.

reddragon70
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Re: Greetings from Scotland

Postby reddragon70 » Sat Oct 24, 2009 9:46 am

Well that is the plan in action. Doing a computing course at college. Well distance learning. Nice and easy so far but then again I did COBOL and PAscal programming many years ago, so its all coming flooding back. Just need to survive about 3 years of hell in this job and hopefully find another. Or hope that ScotRail will actually realise that I am quite intelligent and may be better suited to a job other than driving trains. Yeah, some hope.

Frankly the way this lot are sacking drivers for minor stuff I may be very lucky to even last 3 years, but if I can manage it, its gonna pay for my education. And morgage. And car. And hobbies. And SF cons.

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David Loftus
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Re: Greetings from Scotland

Postby David Loftus » Tue Oct 27, 2009 12:49 am

Cripes, I can't believe I missed your May post the first time around, Iain. Not that I would necessarily would have had anything that useful or substantive to say, but I would at least have commiserated.

Turns out I was only two-and-a-half months from a big switch myself. Not that I've ever done anything for 18 years -- nowhere near it. I get bored too quickly, and since I never wanted to get stuck in a situation that demanded too much of my freedom, time, and conscience, I was invariably "underemployed," as they call it, so I could do lots of fun stuff on the side (like performance folk dancing and singing in choirs and acting in plays and so on).

But that just meant I went through the same sort of arc you have; just on a faster cycle. Like getting bored or stressed after two to four years and taking another year or two of suffering before I jumped ship or got forced out.

I wasn't even that aware of being unhappy with my most recent, almost five-year-long job when I was laid off in mid July suddenly and without warning. After the initial shock and panic, my wife said: we don't have any debts, we have a bit of savings, and if we put together my Social Security, your unemployment, and the bits of free-lance writing and editing we've been doing all along, you should be able to try acting (film, stage, voice, and modeling) for at least a year.

I would have thought such a course inconceivable only a year or two ago. Now I'm having a great time. Like Paul, I couldn't say I'm anywhere near to being a success at this point -- income is either not equal to outgo, or it will stop being so eventually when unemployment and COBRA support payments cease -- but I feel great.

Best of luck to ya, lad.
War is, at first, the hope that one will be better off; next, the expectation that the other fellow will be worse off; then, the satisfaction that he isn't any better off; and, finally, the surprise at everyone's being worse off. - Karl Kraus

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FrankChurch
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Re: Greetings from Scotland

Postby FrankChurch » Tue Oct 27, 2009 11:34 am

I know very little about Scotland, beyond bagpipes and Sheep intestines. I was curious, how do they fund college students there? Can you get free money from the government? Do college students there have huge debts like ours? Kiss.


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