Month: February 2008


A group of confidential, often scheming advisers; a cabal.

Posted in word of the day


Forcible seizure of another’s property; plunder.

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A faithful follower who carries out orders without question.

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To engage in boisterous merrymaking; revel noisily. To behave in a blustering manner; swagger.

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A woman who assists another woman during labor and provides support to her, the infant, and the family after childbirth.

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Proper or sound condition. Mental or emotional state; spirits.

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Very cautious; wary.

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Why I want to become British

People often ask me why on earth, being an European Economic Area (EEA) national living and working in the UK, I am planning to apply for UK citizenship. I usually ramble about how I plan to live in the UK

Posted in britishness, personal


Easily bent; supple.

Posted in word of the day


A transposition of sounds of two or more words, especially a ludicrous one, such as Let me sew you to your sheet for Let me show you to your seat.

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Lent decluttering: 12 –

Over the last six months a reminder has been going off every Saturday to prompt me to go over my account and rename similar tags to avoid duplication. Another reminder has been prompting me every month to delete tags

Posted in declutter

Mi hanno clonato il Bancomat

Mi hanno clonato il Bancomat My debit card has been cloned Literally: ‘To-me (they) have cloned the cash/debit card’. Listen to the audio file Just my luck. Three days before going on holidays I notice that someone has just been

Posted in italian


A ruffle or flounce on a garment. A piece of showy ornamentation.

Posted in word of the day

Che ora è?

Che ora è? What time is it? Literally: ‘What time is (it)?’ Listen to the audio file We are travelling to Australia in three days and I have no idea how my body will react to the long journey and

Posted in italian


To pamper. A pet, especially a pet lamb.

Posted in word of the day

Non c’è niente di buono alla TV

Non c’è niente di buono alla TV There is nothing good on TV Literally: ‘Not there-is nothing of good at-the TV’. Listen to the audio file And by TV I mean what’s available to watch on Freeview. A parte Skins.

Posted in italian

7 things I did not know last week

You no longer need to fill in any paperwork to pay a cheque into your account. Just hand in the cheque in your name and your debit card over the counter, and it’s done. At least with Nationwide. Styrofoam cups

Posted in 7 things

My week on the web

Here are the websites I bookmarked into my account over the past seven days: Microsoft Popfly Online visual tools for building Web pages and mashups and a social network where you can host, share, rate, comment and even remix

Posted in links

Lent decluttering: 11 – toiletries accessories

You know, the kind of stuff that you keep just in case, or that you got for free: The stuff in the left half of the picture can go. Stuff in the middle can go in my opinion, but it’s

Posted in declutter


Characterized by affected, exaggerated, or insincere earnestness. Having the quality or characteristics of oil or ointment; slippery.

Posted in word of the day

Venerdì parto per l’Australia

Venerdì parto per l’Australia On Friday I am leaving for Australia Literally: ‘Friday (I) leave for the Australia’. Listen to the audio file On Friday night I am flying to Australia, but because of the time difference and the very

Posted in italian


Superfluity; excess.

Posted in word of the day

Quanti telefonini hai?

Quanti telefonini hai? How many mobile phones have you got? Literally: ‘How-many mini-telephones (you) have?’ Listen to the audio file Things may have changed now, but last time I lived in Italy (2001) it was not uncommon for people to

Posted in italian

Lent decluttering: 10 – mobile phones

At the top in the photo below, the four mobile phones I have donated to Oxfam today. Dr B. wanted me to sell them on eBay, but I did not think it was worth the hassle. Besides, they can help

Posted in declutter


To rob of goods by force, especially in time of war; pillage: plunder a village. To seize wrongfully or by force; steal: plundered the supplies.

Posted in word of the day

Lent decluttering: 9 – captured leprechaun

A bit of a long story, and one where I don’t come appear to be particularly bright. Bear with me. During the Christmas break 2002, the friend I shared a flat went to see his family in Ireland and came

Posted in declutter, personal

Sono a casa con il raffreddore

Sono a casa con il raffreddore I am at home with a cold Literally: ‘(I) am at home with the cold’. Listen to the audio file And that is all I can say today. You can click on the audio

Posted in Uncategorized

Lent decluttering: 8 – picture frames

Not so easy, this one, because of the memories involved: In September 2002, when I moved into the flat I shared with a friend in Tooting Bec, a friend from NYC came to see us. He is an artist, and

Posted in declutter, personal


To scatter (a liquid) in drops or small splashes. To spot, splash, or soil. To sully the reputation of; defame.

Posted in word of the day

Lent decluttering: 7 – eyecare

This was an easy one. On the left in the photo below: Contact lens solution travel size bottle that has been opened since September 2007? Gone. Several spare contact lens cases that come with every new bottle of solution? Gone.

Posted in declutter