29.8.06

Spam attack

First of all, apologies to all who have received any spam from here this weekend, apparently, there was a problem with Akismet (they provide a blog spam filtering service) this weekend, and as a result, spammers were able to run riot for a few hours. Fortunately, it's all back to normal, and all those rude comments don't make it !! Then, I got into work today, and I had over 70 SPAM emails that had somehow made it past the SPAM filter. What's going on out there?

Weekend was good, was nice to have a nice long weekend. Over the weekend, I've resolved some personal issues, and I feel a lot better for it !! With the baby on the way, I've come to realise that I can no longer be selfish, and have to consider so many other things before I come to any major decisions. I'm not complaining about that, it's just something that I realise more and more each day as 'D-day' approaches.

Over the next 2 weeks, I'll be busy with training, so I'll only be blogging from home. It shouldn't be too much of a problem, but my home PC is SO SLOW, I may yet toss it out of the window very very soon. I think I have to bite the bullet and find the money to buy a brand new one.

Anyway, to everyone out there, have a great week !!

25.8.06

Baby Scan….

So we went for another baby scan yesterday, and it was the first time my wife and I had been to the new hospital. We're still trying to figure out the best route to the hospital, as the one we used yesterday went along a very narrow country road for a bit too long !!

Anyway, the scan went well, the baby has a bit of hair on her head :) all is well, and we had a little chat with the doctor afterwards. The experience was very different from the London hospital, a lot less overcrowded, and I would have to say, a lot more professional (and cleaner!). Anyway, we've been told to be on standby from next week, and if nothing happens after 41 weeks, we should come in to book an induction of labour. Had a chat about pain relief, and I have to say, I now have a new found appreciation for women, and what they have to go through to give birth. We men should consider ourselves lucky !!

While the nurse was taking my wife's blood yesterday, I couldn't even look !! How am I going to cope with watching her give birth? Needles, blood and hospitals in general make me very nervous and queasy. GOD HELP ME.

22.8.06

Mission Accomplished !!

I just turned this:



Into this:



If only having the baby was this easy.....

We've only just 'discovered' that you can't use a pillow or a duvet for a baby until they're much older. So that's some money I wish we hadn't spent. Anyway, that's one thing done on my very long list of things to do..

20.8.06

Apparently….

The baby can come anytime from 36 weeks. So officially, from tomorrow we're on standby. Which means that I have to assemble the cot this week. My wife is packing her martenity suitcase as we speak....

Went for a wedding yesterday. 4th wedding in 6 weeks !! I've now been for more weddings since I moved out of London, than all of my entire time in the UK put together !! Anyway, it gave me an oppurtunity to use my new camcorder, will post some pics soon.
Hope you're all having a great weekend !!

17.8.06

The real Boso….is me !!!

Going through the access statistics for this blog, the most popular search string used to find this blog is Boy Boso (or several variants). I began to wonder, who is this person who is trying to steal my name? Who is this imposter? If I ever catch him, I'll, I'll.........

So I did a little research. Boy Boso is apparently a professional wrestler in the Kaientai Dojo (in Japan).

I reckon I could take him. His special moves are the lightning spike and lightning storm. Sounds like a wuss to me.

Anyway, for some reason, my blog comes up as the top result when you search for Boy Boso. So if you came here looking for him, check out this web page. And you can find the Japanese version of the K-DOJO website here.

15.8.06

It’s a DELL of a bang…

Dell recalls 4 million laptop batteries.

There're a fire risk apparently.





"In light of the above evidence, we'd advise you not to use your laptops on your lap"

P.S. The laptops pictured may or may not be Dells

How does….

Nicole Richie go from this....



to this?



I mean, is there a man alive who prefers the stick insect version?

Saw this on Tomatopuree's blog, but right now, it's the hottest entertainment topic on Technorati.

We all fall down….

This is a serious post, about politics in Nigeria, so please bear with me.

In the Western world, elections are a straightforward matter. You run for election, and you win or lose. As simple as that. Also, when there is inter-party rivalry, it is done in the most civil way possible. Gordon Brown has been waiting to be Prime Minister for years, but his friend Tony Blair isn't ready to leave the top job just yet. But their feuding has been confined to body language, closed door meetings, but as far as I'm concerned, it's been handled in a noble way.

If the Tony Blair and Gordon Brown situation was in Nigeria, I can assure you that one of them would be dead by now. Because in Nigerian politics, defeat is not tolerated, you win by any means necessary. And when your opponent looks to have the upper hand, you kill him. When someone doesn't dance to your tune, you kill him. It is for this reason why there has never been a civilian handing power over to another civilian in the history of the country, political violence always creates an avenue for the military to seize power and restore order. And, as in 1983, it seems that it's happening all over again.

2003 was the first time civilian run elections were held without a military coup. Not to say there was no violence or election irregularities, but it was of 'an acceptable level'. 2007 is meant to be the year that President Obasanjo finally hands over power to another president. He tried unsuccessfully to amend the constitution to secure a third term in office, but most Nigerians, including myself, were happy when that failed. And the search for the next President has begun in earnest.

However, it is at the lower levels of power that there is a crisis. As in 1983, the governorship elections has resulted in death of more than one contestant.

Yesterday, another governorship aspirant was brutally killed in his own bedroom. Shot twice, hit with a club (breaking all his teeth), and then stabbed in the stomach. His assailants waited for him to die, before they fled. His death has led to riots in the state, and youths have burnt down the houses of all his political rivals. His crime? He was the favourite to win his party's nomination for the governorship election, despite the fact that the sitting governor was from his party. He has previously been bullied and threatened if he decided to stand for election. And so ends the life of Dr. Daramola, killed for participating in politics.

Just a few weeks ago, on July 27th, Funsho Williams, who happens to be a close friend of my family, was killed for similar reasons, in Lagos State. A complete gentleman, his death sent shock waves around the nation. His assassination was eerielingly similar and brutal, he was killed in his own bedroom, stabbed and strangled as he begged for his life.

In Nigeria, to say that the police are useless is an exagerration. They are a farce, a bunch of useless men who have no idea what their job entails, and are more of a danger than a public service. So you won't need me to tell you that political killings almost always go unsolved, even though everyone has 'an idea' who is responsible.

In 2001, the Attorney General of Nigeria and Minister for Justice, Bola Ige was also killed in his own bedroom (sense a pattern here?). When the head of the Justice system is killed, and no one is brought to justice, then there is a serious problem. His crime? His party, which was largely a tribal party, was a threat to the ruling party, and his death paved the way for the PDP (People's Democratic Party) to win all but one of the AD's (Alliance for Democracy) governor seats in the West of Nigeria, and almost all of their senate seats in 2003.

So will the 2007 elections descend into violence. The entire nation is worried, and everyone is trying to get their politicians to 'behave themselves'. But unless the killers of Funsho Williams and Dr. Daramola are brought to justice, I'm afraid that these killings can only continue. Human life cannot be perceived as worthless. An example needs to be set. There are even rumours that the military are behind all this, trying to get back into power. Some people are saying we should have an 'Interim Government' till things settle down.

August 29th, 2007 is the date power is set to move hands from one civilian president to another. God help Nigeria.

I leave you with a list of political killings since the military handed power over to civilians in 1999.

1999
Sep 9 - Sunday Ugwu, elder brother of Nwabueze Ugwu, a legislator representing Nkanu East LGA in Enugu killed in a case of mistaken identity

2001
Feb 4 - Governor James Ibori of Delta State  escaped death in an exchange of gun fire between two factions of the PDP

March 5 - Momoh Lawal, a relation of Umar Akaaba, former Chairman, Okene LGA in Kogi State killed

August 24 - Four killed in Abakaliki when Senate President Chief Anyim Pius Anyim's supporters clashed with Ebonyi Governor Sam Egwu's supporters

Dec 21 - Odunayo Olagbaju, member of the state assembly in southwestern Osun, is killed by unknown gunmen in his hometown of Ife.

Dec 23 - Justice Minister Bola Ige is shot dead in his bedroom in  Ibadan, in Nigeria's most high profile political killing for 20 years.

2002
March 7 - Three students reportedly killed at Effurun, Delta State, after a PDP rally turned violent

Aug 13 - Janet Oladapo, a PDP leader in Odigbo LG clubbed to death by gunmen

Aug 15 - Ahmed Pategi, chairman of the PDP, and his police orderly are murdered by unknown assailants on a highway near the state capital Ilorin.

Aug 29 - Gunmen kill Victor Nwankwo, younger brother of opposition PMP  leader   Arthur Nwankwo (and founder Eastern Mandate Union (EMU)) in the southeast city of Enugu.

Sept 1 - A vocal critic of the governor of southeastern Anambra state governor and local branch chairman of the Nigerian Bar Association, Barnabas Igwe and his wife, Abigail, are gruesomely murdered in the commercial hub of Onitsha. The killers use a truck to run repeatedly over their dead bodies.

Sept 26 - John Nunu, treasurer of Akassa local government area of southeast Bayelsa state, is killed by unknown gunmen.

Oct 20 - Prof. Chimere Ikoku, former Vice Chancellor, University of Nigeria, killed in his residence

Nov 25 - PDP governorship hopeful Dele Arojo is assassinated in Lagos by unknown gunmen.

December ? - Alhaji Isyaku Muhammad, United Nigeria Peoples Party (UNPP), National Vice Chairman, North West was assassinated

2003
Jan 18 - Three killed in an ANPP, PDP clash around Buhari - Bularafa - Dokini area in Yobe State

Feb 10 - Ogbonnaya Uche, a senatorial candidate of the main opposition All Nigeria Peoples Party (ANPP) dies two days after he is attacked in his home in southeastern Owerri.

Feb 18 - At least seven people are killed in clashes between PDP and ANPP supporters in Jato-Aka village in central Benue state. The bloodletting was sparked by the killing of a security guard at the residence of ANPP's governorship candidate for Benue, Paul Unongo.

Feb 22 - Theodore Agwatu, principal secretary to the Imo state governor, is murdered in his Owerri residence by unknown attackers.

Feb 23 - Speaker, Borno State House of Assembly, Hon. Inuwa Kubo escaped assassination attempt

March 3 - Mrs. Emily Omope (aka Thatcher) an AD member in Ekiti State died  at the UCH Ibadan after an acid attack in December last year by unknown persons

March 5 - ANPP regional chieftain Marshall Harry is shot dead in his home in the capital Abuja.

2006
Jul 03 A candidate for governor of Plateau State, Chief Jesse Aruku,  was killed in what police described as a political assassination,  ahead of elections next year.


Jul 27 Funsho Williams, favourite for the PDP governorship ticket for Lagos State,  murdered in his own home. His death brings the nation to a standstill as his was known to all as a complete gentleman, and an advocate for peaceful politics. He was strangled and stabbed in his bedroom.

Aug 14 Dr. Ayo Daramola, another PDP governorship candidate (Ekiti State), who looked set to win his party's nomination, killed in his own bedroom. His assaliants apparantly came from out of town, were seen at a local beer parlour discussing 'the job' and broke into his house at 1am to kill him. He was beaten, stabbed and shot.

God help Nigeria.

14.8.06

Windows Live Writer (Beta)

I discovered this amazing tool yesterday, and it looks like a winner. It's a blog composer for Windows Live Spaces, but it works with a lot of other providers as well.

It allows you to compose your blog posts offline, but it also acts as a WYSIWYG editor as well, so you have an idea of exactly how your post will look like when it's published. It works really well, and allows you to use hyperlinks, post pictures and use maps from Windows Live Local in your post. The only thing that I've found I can't do is choose which category I want to post in, which would be very useful, but I hope this will be incorporated soon.

Microsoft Word's new version due for release by the end of the year also allows you to blog directly from Word, so I suspect this is a port of that functionality.

So far, two thumbs up from me !!

13.8.06

Red Alert !!



Liverpool have outlined their intent by defeating Chelsea this afternoon, in a keenly contested Community Shield this afternoon. Goals from John Arne Riise and Peter Crouch helped Liverpool to a 2-1 victory. Andy Shevchenko scored a brilliant goal for Chelsea, but it wasn't enough to beat the Mighty Reds.

While we can't read too much into this match, it shows that Liverpool are ready to match Chelsea this season. Several new signings have come in and made the team even stronger. Chelsea have gone out and splashed the cash as well, however, Liverpool have spent a fraction of the amount, and if you ask me, they have gotten better value for money.

Jermaine Pennant:



The bad boy who never lived up to his potential. However, he's still very young, and can flourish at Anfield. He is an old-fashioned winger who provides maximum width and possesses an excellent cross. He is also dangerous in dead ball situations and has a good work rate off the ball. With Peter Crouch's height, he can help with some brilliant high balls into the box. Plus, he's a Liverpool fan.

Craig Bellamy:



A quick, hardworking striker. Also, a Liverpool fan, although Stevie Gerrard would beg to differ. His goal in the Champions League qualifier was a typical poacher's goal, but today, he showed even more class, with a good cross to set up Peter Crouch's goal. Bellamy will inject some pace into the frontline, and in my opnion, he's the kind of striker that will score up to 20 goals in a season, vital for a title push.

Mark 'Speedy' Gonzalez:



Now, this is one exciting prospect. Finally able to play for Liverpool after a protraced work permit application, Mark Gonzalez is a player with electric pace who can play on either flank or as a forward. While we don't know too much about him, he had an impressive season on loan at Real Sociedad last season, including a memorable goal against Real Madrid.

Fabio Aurelio:



A tough competitor with a sweet left foot, Aurelio is the first Brazilian to play for Liverpool and brings many qualities to the team. Besides being a left back Aurelio is also very comfortable at playing in a left wing back role should the situation arise. He had a brilliant chance today, which brought out a good save from Cudicini. His presence increases competition for the let back role with Stephen Warnock and Riise.

Gabriel Paletta:



A no nonsense centre half, and one for the future. Benitez says he's more of Jamie Carragher than Sami Hyypia. He's young, talented and a lot of people speak very highly of him, including Daniel Passarella, who was captain of the Argentina side that won the 1978 World Cup, and a former central defender himself, he rates Paletta as one of the best of his type in Argentina.

All these players, and we've got the return of Zenden from injury, Paul Anderson has come through the ranks, and was promoted from the Youth team after helping to win last season's FA Youth Cup.

Exciting times for Liverpool team, and maybe this is the year where we finally win the title? I reckon that this team is good enough for at least second place, and anything below this should be seen as failure.

9.8.06

The curse of the summer holidays

Last year, while preparing for my wedding I came to the conclusion:

"Thou shalt not do/plan anything of consequence in August, for example, plan a wedding. Everyone is on holiday. Very, very frustrating."

Well, it's that time of year again. And this time, we're having a baby. So it makes sense for antenatal classes to be cancelled in August, doesn't it? The next set of classes are in September, obviously after we've had our baby.

The alternative, is to pay for antenatal classes, and from my initial research, it looks like it's going to cost around £150 (at least). But worse still, the classes closest to us are fully booked till October, so we have to travel a bit, and that's if we actually manage to get booked on one of the classes !! I'm not happy.

8.8.06

Big trouble (in a little package)

We've got our 3 year old nephew staying with us. His mum and 11 month old sister were around for the weekend, so as you can imagine, the entire house is upside down, and we've got a little rascal who is forever running around, jumping around, or shouting. Also, it seems that every sentence from his mouth starts with "I want......". This is like the part where you've watching the preview to the movie you're about to see, however, in this case, we don't get the choice not to see the movie anymore.

To be fair to the lad, he's not that bad, and I'm sure I must have been worse as a kid. But it takes a lot of energy to look after kids, I've come to realise. God will help me.

I've also got 2 cousins coming over to spend the rest of the week (16 and 10) and another one will be appearing on Thursday, FULL HOUSE doesn't even begin to describe it. Luckily, my wife is home to look after everyone, I'm worried they'll stress her out though.......

Apart from all that, life is pretty boring at the moment. I'm finding it hard to stay awake at my tablllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllle.........................

4.8.06

Friday Funnies: Maths for Beginners

Blonde Equation

Find x

Infinity

pic11337.jpg

pic27753.gif

Friday Funnies: What Tony Blair said to Snoop

The scene: the Sky bar at the Mondrian Hotel, Hollywood, on Monday night where Adidas is hosting a party. Among the guests are several Premiership footballers, Stevie Wonder, Snoop Dogg and Tony Blair. The prime minister sips a cocktail while admiring the view. Snoop Dogg approaches.

Snoop Dogg: Yo, Blair.

Tony Blair: You know, I really wish people would stop saying that, it's just ... oh, hello. Puff Daddy, is it?

SD: Call me Snoop.

TB: Always changing your names, you lot. Can't keep up.

SD: Fo' shizzle ma nizzle.

TB: Hmm.

SD: Dat middle east bizzle is out of control.

TB: Well, it not quite as simple as that, you see.

SD: Need a immediate ceasefire, multinational security force in South Lebanon, political framework for a lasting settlement.

TB: Yes, of course. I'm down with that, obviously [attempts a complicated handshake with Snoop. Snoop declines].

SD: You need to get Bush to move on this, him and Condolizzle, got to do the bizzle.

TB: Well I am hoping to persuade them to take a more ...

SD: Can't be the president's bitch all the time.

TB: Look, I don't think it's fair to say I'm his bitch. I find the insinuation, frankly, rather whack.

SD: Time to rethink the whole strategizzle, put together a new agenda on poverty, trade, climate, whatever. All that shit.

TB: Which is, I think you'll find, more or less what I told the World Affairs Council just ...

SD: The World Affairs Council is WAC. Marinate on that, prime mizzle.

TB: Obviously I'll be marinating on a lot of things between now and ... perhaps you'd like to come to Britain in the near future to discuss these ideas further, perhaps speak at the party conference like my close personal friend Bono.

SD: No can do. My boyz got into it at Heathrow duty-free and I been banned.

TB: That was you? You're Ice T?

SD: I'm a Diet Sprite actually, but if you're goin to the bar ...

[The prime minister leaves to talk to Vidal Sassoon]

Nicked from here.

And the countdown begins….

well, kind of.

Today is my wife's last day at work. Her maternity leave has begun in earnest, and I can't believe how quickly all this has happened. I still remember the day we found out she was pregnant for sure, it seems like it was a few weeks ago. A lot has happened since then, but now, we are almost ready for the little one's arrival.

2.8.06

The special one is running scared………



New look Jose Mourinho has already started with his mind games ahead of the new football season, by saying that as far as he's concerned, Liverpool are not title contenders. The Special one says he's more impressed by Arsenal and Manchester United's new players (which is really odd, as both teams have only added a player each, and lost a few to boot).

I think he's running scared, Rafa Benitez proved at Valencia that you don't need stars to win titles, just ask Real Madrid and Barcelona !! Liverpool has added a lot of exiciting new players over the last few weeks, and while we've only beaten Chelsea twice in 8 matches, those two matches were the most important, in the Champions League Semifinal, and the FA cup. OK, they beat us in the Carling cup two seasons ago, but it was a tough match, and we took them all the way into extra time, and they had to play the game of their lives to beat us.

Next season's first fixture, Liverpool v. Chelsea, in the Community Shield, on the 13th of August.

GAME ON !!

1.8.06

More baby discussion

In the spirit of last week, it's time for more baby discussion.

Do you guys think that it's a good idea for your baby to sleep in your room? There are obvious advantages or disadvantages to this, and putting the baby up in a seperate room, but my wife and I had this discussion last weekend (well, let me say it was brought up again last weekend, but we had already decided the baby was sleeping in our room), and it has made me realise that men and women seem to have very different opinions on this issue, especially when it's a first child?

I know Youngmum has a nursery, and I think Mylozmom has one too. I'm particularly interested in hearing what Sherri has to say !! Also, I'd like to hear from any men who have any thoughts on this issue, as I've found that opinions are quite polarised between the sexes !!