John Wilson - Home Page John Wilson is a great singer/songwriter. I was once in a band called "The Dodgers" with him. We have remained in touch and I have produced DVDs for him.
Check out his site.
timjamesblues Home Page Tim is a really close friend who has had a site for as long as it was possible. If I need to know what I or my friends were doing since the year dot..this is where I find it out.
The Fortunes Photo Page Alex Hoek is a good friend to both myself and The Fortunes. Check out his site which he has dedicated to The Fortunes and you'll see lots of pics not even seen on the official Fortunes website.
AndyBlog Andy Curtis is a rare breed.He is a creative and multi- talented, very articulate, and highly intelligent individual who's blog outshines most in it's capacity to both astound and amuse. Check it out.
LuLu Rebecca de'Wessington, good neighbour and purveyor of Northumbrian delights via her "Northumbia Pride" retail outlet. Always en-devouring to bring class and culture to the table. This is her blog.
Persistent The blog of Ian de'Wessington partner of Rebecca. The most resourceful man I know. I often wake to his whittling arrows in the yard and applaud his industry.
Smitham's Meanderings Michael is the longest serving member of The Fortunes, a great guitarist, a good friend. Check out his blog
Jason Thompson Jason, another drummer and media merchant and good friend. Check out his blog cause it's always interesting.
Barbara and I had a fantastic time over in America staying with friends Stuart and Suzanne in their wonderful homes In Maryland and West Virginia. During our stay we took the opportunity to drive down the Blue Ridge Mountains, Visit Washington, including the White House, take in Pennsylvania with a visit to Amish county and Gettysburg. We even bumped into Senator John McCain..
As part of a photographic course I'm attending we were asked to take some images representing Autumn. Here are a few of my photographs taken from a couple of separate days out with the camera two weeks ago.
March 2009 and The Fortunes do a mini tour of Prairie Land Canada, taking in Winnipeg, Regina, Moose Jaw, Edmonton and finally Calgary. It was cold , it was flat but it was invigorating. The band went down very well and every one wants us back. Here are a few photos of the landscape variety. All the personal ones can be found on the Fortunes Website.
Our Holiday this year of 2009 was spent in Dubai....too hot to actually enjoy sunbathing..so sightseeing was the order of the day...and many sights were seen,
This album contains only a fraction of many photos that were taken...I have chosen those that have a difference to them or some artistic merit. This naturally means that by and large they are objects and locations rather than posed snaps.
What a debacle. Having watched the semi final of the Champions League cup. Chelsea V Barcelona on Wednesday night I was moved enough to try and join in a TV "phone in" over the controversy that accompanied the occasion..
Well I guess the best team won or at least they deserved to because they were trying to at least. Chelsea's tactic of keeping Barcelona out at any costs over two legs almost paid off. But it ain't over 'til the fat lady picks the ball out of the back of the net..or something similar.
OK. Barcelona won on the away goals rule...but Chelsea were denied at least three penalty decisions in their favour by a referee who just proved to be incompetent on the night. If he had given just one of these Chelsea would have probably been going through to the final. Barcelona's goal in the second minute of injury time, ( and the only shot they had on target all night!!) means they go through. The ref's bad decisions also resulted in a Barcelona player being wrongly red carded and sent off..thus disqualifying him from playing in the final. That would have been the highlight of his footballing career. The replays proved how wrong the ref got things on each occasion. The Chelsea players were so disgusted that some of them let their cool go at the end of play and there were some very ugly scenes indeed. They were so incensed and being at the height of their passion and full of adrenalin you can understand it...The apres match review was dominated not by the game play analysis but concentrated on how badly the ref had been and how he had been the most influential person on the outcome of the game .. The night before we had a similar incident where the ref appeared on seeing the replay to have got it wrong again. Because of that Manchester United will have to do without Fletcher, one of their best players, in the final. So what's the solution?
Simple the way I see it. With so much money involved and so much at stake in these days why can't football go the way of Rugby, Tennis and Cricket and use modern technology to help make these difficult decisions. There are cameras everywhere at football matches nowadays and every angle is covered...so a slow motion action replay is all that would be required to see what really happens. This would help referees come to the correct decision more often and help appease the players. The argument that this would slow the game down holds no water for me. It's already slowed down with all the arguing and gesticulating at the referee after most incidents. Players wasting time feigning injury to help secure a free kick etc. A fourth referee, as they have in Rugby, is all that is required to help reach a correct verdict. To prevent this happening at every incident captains of each side would be allowed three occasions in each game to contest a referee's decision (as in Tennis). If the replay showed that someone dived rather than be tripped then the penalty would go the other way and visa versa. This would ensure that the captains would have to be very sure they had a legitimate case before calling for a second opinion. I would suggest that they allow this for contesting penalties, off sides, and carded tackles. The game is too fast these days for linesmen and referees to cope. Week after week we get the benefit of slow motion replays to prove how many times they get it wrong. So much so that it's almost becoming a surreal farce and a lottery as to how a decision will go. Added to that is the ever increasing tendency for players to dive in the hope of getting a reward or advantage. They know only too well that they can get away with it more often than not. The use of action-replays to spot this abuse of fair-play would help curb such cheating ways. Some players, like Ronaldo for example, gain a reputation for diving so that when there is a genuine case for being illegally tackled they are not given the benefit of the doubt. So things become even more absurd. To say using technology would undermine the influence of the referee is nonsense. They are getting less respect with each bad decision that is made. We, the public, get to see what really happened everytime...shouldn't we allow the referee the same privilege? Come on UEFA my solution would solve it all, and I might add, as in other sports, bring something new to the game that the spectators would actually come to appreciate.It seems to work fine at Wimbledon or Twickenham ..no problem.The punters love it and join in with the anticipation of seeing justice done..
And why the authorities won't allow video evidence to help with an appeal, as in Fletchers case, to vindicate him and allow him to go to the final, is beyond me and makes no sense. That's another issue of course..
Come on Ref you *%$£@!......That was a try in anyone's book.