On the local rain

Just before I was claimed by much-needed sleep last night, I caught a glimpse of the latest rerun of Blackadder II. The episode in question was entitled “Potato”, and was based around the return to England of Sir Walter Raleigh.

Blackadder, anxious to win back the Queen’s favour from Raleigh, tells the court of his intention to sail around the Cape of Good Hope (just down the road from here).
Raleigh scoffs:

“You’d never dare. Why, ’round the Cape, the rain beats down so hard it makes your head bleed!”

“So, some sort of hat is probably in order.”

“And great dragons leap from the water and swallow ships whole!”

“I must remember to pack the larger of my two shrimping nets.”

Which all goes to show that the reputation of the Cape weather was well known to Western Civilisation long before Jan ever got here. That said, it’s actually a very pleasant day today.

Meanwhile, in Manchester…

It’s been a good week for Manchester. City won the Premier League and it hasn’t rained every day. But there is a sinister underworld in Manchester which is exploiting the lower than average intelligence of people from… Manchester.


Greater Manchester Police are investigating a scam in which victims were conned into handing over hundreds of pounds for a bag of potatoes.

The story, which I spotted on BBC News, using the keywords “Manchester”, “Potato” and “Scam”, leaves us tantalisingly short on detail.

Police say at least four people have been approached by two men offering to sell them a laptop or iPhone.

One man paid up to £1,400 and walked away with a rucksack full of potatoes. Other victims received bottles of soft drinks.

Crime, and being a victim of crime, is a terrible thing. It’s in no way a thing to be ridiculed.

Except perhaps, when instead of getting an iPhone for his hard earned £1,400, the victim walks off with a rucksack full of potatoes. Which, it should be noted, would be equally good at displaying Flash content.

How can this have occurred? I can only imagine that there was some sort of hypnotism involved.

You are feeling sleepy…
You are feeling restful and sleepy…
When I click my fingers, you will awaken and believe that this rucksack full of potatoes is an iPhone worth £1,400.

And then, when they get home and the spell wears off, they have to go down to their local police station and report that they thought they were buying an iPhone, but actually, they ended up with a rucksack full of potatoes. And the police have got to keep a straight face. Jeez.

Still, it could be worse, I suppose. They could have ended up with a handful of Blackberry.