Archive for December, 2011

Merry Christmas! I’ve finished work and I’m now fully employed on cleaning and catering duties for the next few days. There is no chance of being distracted by traditional Christmas TV and I have even sourced the Christmas tree successfully. The eldest daughters arrive home tomorrow, assuming that the trains run on time, so we […]



The week before Christmas is a time of commercial opportunism. Everywhere you turn there are advertisements and billboards trying to get your attention. If you are an IT professional and you find yourself with a few free minutes as your project manager realises that there is no way to get everything done before Friday, why […]

The youngest teenager came home from school brandishing the coloured belt which shows that she has reached a level of proficiency in kung fu. Mrs R. came home from work with a certificate to show that she has successfully completed a course in ‘conflict resolution’. I’m in no position to argue with either of them […]

Sheet music


“I’m really sorry about this,” said the lady in the shop, looking a bit embarrassed, “but it’s not really the best time to be looking for Christmas music…” “Two weeks before Christmas?” I said. “Well most people tend to look for Christmas music earlier in the year,” she continued, “so they have time to practice […]

Carol swinging


Somehow I have agreed to play my saxophone at my local primary school on Friday. It is their Christmas assembly. I was asked to play a carol or two. There are several reasons why I am worried about this: 1. Everyone knows the tune of Christmas carols. If I make a mistake it will be […]

Mammoth task


I see that scientists are going to try to clone a woolly mammoth. Did anyone else immediately think “I wonder what it will taste like?”. When they succeed please can I be the first person to draw a cave-painting-style picture of white coated men with test tubes, to go alongside the iconic stone age hunting […]

In these busy days of the pre-Christmas compression period (when you have to fit 5 weeks of work into just 3 elapsed weeks) it is important to prioritise. For example, today I ordered the turkey, but I did not make the Christmas cake. This is because a festive dinner without a turkey is a bigger […]

< 6 sigma


As you know, I am now in charge of shopping and cooking here at Southfork. Mrs R was quite uneasy about handing over these responsibilities when she started work, but I told her that with my extensive international management experience I would have not trouble with the domestic duties. On Monday we ran out of […]