Monday, 24 July 2017

Thank you, thank you


I am honoured to be awarded this small but significant medal (the Napier Shaw Bronze medal) for the best paper published in the CIBSE’s Building Services Engineering Research and Technology journal (BSERT). However, I would rather not focus on the technical aspects of the paper as I'm not at all convinced that my report on why we should not use panels of trained sniffers to assess air quality in offices is of wide appeal.

I would rather focus on how I came to write a paper at all. And I'm hoping my story will inspire you all to try something new, to achieve a distant dream and to unlock your hidden potential.

Friday, 14 April 2017

Bog Off Bunnies, Celebrate Easter with a Hare


Easter is almost upon us and the shops have been filled to the rafters with chocolate eggs and bunnies for some time now. But if you really want to be Easter-authentic then I propose you treat your beloved to a hare related gift. 

Easter is thought to be German or possibly even Babylonian in origin. Some believe that Easter gets its name from the old English Ēastre or Ēostre, the Teutonic/Anglo-Saxon goddess of spring, for whom a festival was held in her honour every year at the vernal equinox. Ishtar, the Babylonian goddess of spring, is another homophone of Easter. The date of Easter is not fixed, but instead is governed by the phases of the moon – very pagan.

Sunday, 19 February 2017

Give Evolution a Chance

We live in a stupid world, a world now overpopulated with unintelligent and ignorant people. We place these stupid people in positions of power and we idolise them.

If you are not convinced then consider global politics and the leaders of the free world – halfwits like Reagan, George W Bush and Trump. In the UK, celebrity status is bestowed upon morons from reality TV – idiots like Joey Essex who can't tell the time or blow his nose. We worship fatuous footballers like Wayne Rooney, say no more. And our children aspire to be pop stars like the puerile Jedwood and Justin Bieber.

Sunday, 27 November 2016

It's Got legs


So, it's just 27 days to Christmas. Not long now but the threat of Xmas has been looming for some time – my mother called in September to organise the family Christmas lunch. There are eight of us and each year it is a military precision exercise and logistical nightmare to bring us all together.

As there are eight of us, each year my dad suggests that we serve octopus for lunch so that we can have a leg each. This joke doesn’t actually work as half of us are vegetarian; but he still tells that same joke every year. My wife also claims she is lactose intolerant but it turns out she is just intolerant, especially of my mother’s cooking. Each year, my dad also tells the story of Asda joining forces with MFI – that 70s dodgy furniture shop. He muses “I bought a turkey there once but on the way home the leg fell off”.

Tuesday, 22 November 2016

Mince Pie (& Tart) Review


It’s that time of year, the time when the TV and shops are inundated with Christmas decorations, presents and food. The mince pie season is officially open. Over the next few weeks I will give up my time and waistline to test the ever-growing range of mince pies (and tarts). I’ve rated each pie by flavour (up to 5 stars) where the higher the better. I have also rated them by cost (up to 5 pound sings)where the higher the more expensive. So look for lots of ó but fewer £s.,  I’m attempting to create my own MPI, mince pie index, but I haven’t fathomed the maths yet.


Sunday, 13 November 2016

Management according to reality TV

Is there anyone out there who doesn't have a TV? There are usually one or two who proclaim "television kills the art of conversation, now where's my book" or "where's my knitting". I'm a fan of TV as I believe it is educational. I even believe that we can learn from that scourge of television, the Reality TV show. If you look very closely you will unearth some hidden gems on business management.

Reality TV is cheap TV, it involves no actors or scripts, it preys on wannabe celebrities being watched by more wannabe celebrities. And there is our first business lesson – don't spend money on a high-quality product or service when your audience, your market, just wants cheap and cheerful.


Sunday, 6 November 2016

Son of a Viking Demigod


This is a guest blog by my good friend Nigel Oseland.

When I introduce myself for the first time, people often say "that's an unusual name". And I reply "it's not that unusual, Nigel is a traditional English name". But today I want to talk about the origins of my surname "Oseland".

In the UK, the Oselands are all based in the Black Country – they are highly geographically immobile. But they didn't move there until the 1870s, when they went to work in the coal mines and steel works. Before then the Oselands lived in the countryside in villages such as Cleobury Mortimer located along the Severn valley in Shropshire.