The Longest/Shortest Day of The Year

Today is the longest day of the year in Australia. I guess that means it is the shortest day for my northern hemisphere friends. It is a comfortable 24°C, the cicadas are finishing their song for the day, the sky is turning red and people are out for their evening walk.  It is hard to imagine that just a few days ago, it snowed in the highlands, it flooded in Western Australia and Queensland, and Melbourne was hit be a violent thunderstorm that caused much damage.  While the UK and Europe are snowed under and people cannot get home for Christmas, Israel has had the worst bush fires on record.   And I still hear people say that Global Warming is a myth.  Whether it is caused be man or is just a freak of nature, it doesn’t matter.  It is happening.

Now, all we need is a way for all that snow to be transported to those places that are still in drought… 🙂

For us here down-under, it now starts to get closer to winter, but for my Northern Hemisphere friends, your days will get longer, for the next 6 months anyway.

Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year to all.



For No Other Reason

For no other reason than I like the song, and it holds some remembrance of my youth, I thought I would share with you a song that may be a bit more up-beat than my last blog post.


The Bi-Polar Blues

After a weekend where I came away feeling that I had a good time, today I am really down.  Then to top it off, I get rejected for a course I really wanted.  The pills aren’t working today.  Rest assured I’m not contemplating suicide (the pill do work in that regard), but the mood I’m in always brings me back to an old favourite song that John Lennon wrote when he had similar mood problems.


Cricket Round 7 – Day 2

A nice sunny and warm day for Cricket.  It’s nice to Umpire near the coast as there is nearly always a North-East breeze to keep you cool.  Anyway, this week I am prepared for a good day’s Cricket as one side tries to avoid an outright defeat and the other tries to gain maximum points.  It was one of those days where the Cricket wasn’t brilliant but it was hard-fought with each side giving it their best, and as an Umpire you get drawn into the intrigue as the game unfolds.

It is a time when Umpires need to be at the top of their game and it appears that I made a mistake with a caught-behind.  In my opinion, the batsman hit his foot as the bat came though.  There was a noise, but I saw no deviation of the ball, which was taken by the keeper.  On appeal I gave the batsman “not out” because I had a doubt whether it was bat on ball or bat on foot.  Subsequently, I discovered that the batsman had indeed hit the ball.

So what do you do when you know you have made a mistake?  Forget it and get on with the game.  Easier said than done?  You bet.  Your thoughts are “did I just change the outcome of the game?”  But the bowler is bowling the next ball, so you have to concentrate on the here-and-now.  There can be no question of a make-up call – two mistakes don’t make a right and it will definitely result in a loss of trust with the players.

The process I use is a simple one.  The Laws of Cricket state that if there is any doubt, then you say “not out”.  Did I have any doubt?  Yes.  Therefore, I called it correctly.  However, did I make a mistake?  That’s something to discuss after the game at Penguin Corner over a cleansing ale.  The players are willing to accept an occasional mistake from a generally good Umpires and so should Umpires.  A good Umpire is his own worst critic, but instead of beating yourself up about it, learn from it and become a better Umpire.

And did the home team score an outright win?  Yes, but not without a few hiccups.


Have You Upgraded Yet? – Part 3.0.3

It didn’t take long for WordPress to come out with another “security” upgrade. This time it is only for those who use remote updates. However, there is also an update to Akismet which is vital if you want to eliminate spam. The WordPress v3.0.3 update won’t effect the majority of existing users, but the Akismet update is what I would call “mandatory”.

Don’t forget to back up your system and database before upgrading, just in case. But I have found both upgrades to work quite well.

Happy blogging.