Sunday, 31 May 2009
Why? Well i feel that the story held within the covers of this small, just over 220 page book is such an amazing testimony to the strength of the human soul, and the unconditional love and strength of a mother for her seriously ill son.
Will i get a reply? Well, i am not expecting one soon...but you never know :-)
Saturday, 30 May 2009
What an amazing and heart wrenching story this is, yet i,along with most other people, knew nothing about the story of Anthony Nolan except for the fact that he was born with a disease that effected his bone marrow, had a mother who set up the Anthony Nolan Trust in the Seventies, and ....well that was all really.
This morning i awoke at 4:37 am and had a mad compulsion to pick up this book, which i had recently won on an Ebay auction for 1 pence!, and read it...and read it...etc.At 10am i finished it, and the emotion that it stirred in my very soul was astonishing, fueled even more so by the fact that i recently learned of how Shirley left this world, also with a tragic twist.
It is a story that is both powerful and moving, has moments of hope tainted with despair, and other times the sheer shock and awe in which the reader realises just what an incredibly resourceful, single minded woman Shirley was.....and all for the love of her only son Anthony.
So please, if you have access to a library, see if they have a copy of this relatively unknown (and out of print)publication,or maybe you will find a rare copy on Ebay, because if you enjoy reading a story that, to be quite honest, would make a factual Hollywood blockbuster, you will not be disappointed, and if you are like me, you will thank god that your lives are (in comparison) so blessed with relative mediocrity.
This year marks the 30th anniversary of the death of Anthony (October 21st 1979), and 7 years since Shirley's.
If you only ever had the chance to read one more book in your lifetime..this is it.
Thursday, 28 May 2009
Tuesday, 26 May 2009
Hopefully if I manage to get the word out to enough people, and they in turn answer the call from Nooky, maybe we can make the 2 sessions a fantastic success and help swell the numbers of those already on the register.
This is the video which is now online:
Monday, 25 May 2009
Benzene .Not a big word really, but one which has just sent a shiver down my spine in relation to the words that preceded it, namely "Chemicals that may cause Leukaemia".
Why the concern? Well many years ago in the early 80's i was a young fella who had just started a new career in the Royal Air Force, and over the next 12 years i spent my time quite often up to my elbows in AVTUR (F34) jet engine fuel.And....your ahead of me now aren't you? Guess what one of the "nasty" ingredients of AVTUR is ?....Benzene ! :-(.
I spent 4 years at RAF Cranwell, 2 of which i spent on the flight line, and some days i would spend whole days pumping hundreds of gallons of AVTUR into fuel tanks...occasionally getting soaked when the open lines tanks overflowed due to a sticky filler trigger.
I spent 2 years in a fuel tank bay at RAF Lossiemouth, often crawling into them to carry out work, and although later there was forced air breathing equipment provided, for the most part we used crappy face masks which did bugger all and hardly made any difference.
On one occasion, whilst at RAF Lossiemouth i was testing a drop tank when a hose on the test rig ruptured and soaked me from head to toe in AVTUR. I went to the MO at the centre, was left to sit in drenched overalls for almost an hour, then went home and had a shower on his directions, i was a little burned by the stuff, but it did not really concern me...but now....well now i am beginning to feel a little anxious that the exposure over those years to AVTUR,MEK,OM15,Yellow Chromate and the likes may, just possibly have some link to my leukaemia.
I will be doing a little more research on this subject.I will keep you posted of any developments or discoveries that i make.
Sunday, 24 May 2009
I have come to the conclusion that people who work in advertising really are from another planet.
Why? well take (for a random example...that has been annoying the duck out of me for a week or 2) the recent advert for Oasis "The drink for people who don't like water". Now call me picky, but isn't the main constituent of this drink...erm...water ? And if this is the case, why would people who "don't like water" want to drink it...more to the point, why would i prefer to pay 90p for a small bottle of water with a flavouring in it than to simple run a tap and add some squash ? Go figure !
Actually, this advert is not the only one that treats it's potential customers with such disdain that it hurts, it is one of so many others that have probably cost millions of quid to produce, and then completely baffle attempt and con the viewer with, well shall we say "bogus claims" about the products properties and effects.For example:
Gillette "the best a man can get"....our hero drags the razor over his already professionally shaved bonce (which has then be re covered in foam), to demonstrate how good the product is...so good that they have to pre shave for the shaving demo !
Ford,Peugeot,Fiat,Citroen,Vauxhall..etc. Why do they always show the top of the range cars on the glossy footage that is thrust onto our TV sets...then label it with the cost of the base model and a tiny footnote at the bottom of the screen to tell you that the one you are looking at is gonna cost you twice as much ?
Take the Volvic 14 day challenge!......why bother? Just fill up a used plastic bottle with your everyday "common" tap water and save yourself a few quid.Of course the fact that keeping hydrated is proven to be of physical benefit of that there is no doubt, but why buy "designer" water when the stuff in your own home will do the job just as well!........in fact,stick tap water in a used Volvic bottle and not even your snotty friends will suspect :-)
Lastly.Why have Norwich Union decided that they are going to change their name to that of a rather ugly 1970's saloon car ? A Viva.........good grief, and how much did that cost to advertise ? Strange how my insurance policy's seem to be getting more expensive each year ! mmmm?
Anyway, feeling thirsty after all that typing, so I'm going to grab a drink of mercury....it's for people who don't like water you know :-)
It would utilise facilities that already exist, all we have to do is get one over to London (the Thames is so ideally situated for this purpose....so close to the houses of parliament that travel costs from work to residence would also be vastly reduced )
Anyway, without further adoo...follow this link to see the details of my master plan, just needs a lick of paint perhaps, but i am sure that lots of MP#s would feel most at home there, and TBH a lot of them should be there anyway.......
Saturday, 23 May 2009
A girl aged six is facing a race against time to find a donor who could save her life.
Imogin Appiah, from Croydon, is suffering from leukaemia and desperately needs a bone marrow transplant.
She is undergoing intensive chemotherapy at the Royal Marsden hospital in preparation for a transplant
But because there are so few black and Asian people on the British bone marrow register Imogin's chances of finding a match are only one in 100,000. A white person has a one in five chance.
The African Caribbean Leukaemia Trust is urging people to join the register.
Imogin's mother Sheila said: “The love I have for my daughter is so deep and she means the world to me. She is and always will be a fighter and we are reaching out for support from people now.”
Imogin, a pupil at Elmwood primary school in Croydon, was diagnosed with leukaemia when she was three. She underwent more than two years of chemotherapy and went into remission.
But in February she relapsed and was told she needs a bone marrow transplant. Mrs Appiah, 37, said: “We only had a very short time to enjoy at the end of her treatment before she relapsed.
"It is absolutely vital that people realise how important it is to get on to the bone marrow register.
“Imogin is having very intensive chemotherapy at the moment. After the last round she was not able to speak, eat or drink. But there is still hope and I am urging people to come forward.”
Whilst over at Nooky's place we did a short "promo" video appeal for the Join for Joel events in June, and i have now posted a still from that here.Cheers Nooky :-)
Friday, 22 May 2009
I decided to "produce" (!) another video to mark this event, and so with my characteristic imagination and creative flair i decided to document ...........my daily drive to work !.OK, before anyone tells me that watching a video almost 1 hour and 10 Min's long that shows my 43.5 mile daily commute, let me assure you that it has not been compiled in "real time"...i have speed ed it up somewhat in the style of the classic 1950's film "London to Brighton run in 4 Min's which was made in 1955...slightly before me...by 11 years!.
My offering was recorded on super high tech equipment that i installed in my Trusty Scirocco.....OK, i velcro'd my camera phone to the rear view mirror, but hey, the finished product is not bad for a first attempt.
The footage was recorded in real time, and the original film runs for 1 hour and 9 Min's, however due to some wizardry on my Lappy, i have managed to condense it down to slightly over 8 and a half Min's....if only the real trip took that long :-)
If you are familiar with the route,see if you can spot any scenery that you recognise.
And please, if you have happen to be lucky enough to own a Bugatti Veyron, don't try this on the way home :-)
Wednesday, 20 May 2009
Oh, i got your numbers by the way, so i will post them on here just in case anyone does a vehicle search and wants to know its previous history....don't buy it :-)
Mad Van Man #1 "VAK" MF09 MCN & Mad Max Van #2 BJ52 FPO...both white !
Right, i will get some tea now to calm my nerves ! Fancy some chinese food tonight :-)
Monday, 18 May 2009
Anyway, i also posted some details about the event on the hospital web intranet, so if you are surfing onto this page from there...hello !.
Just got back from work now, so it's time for tea and a nice relaxing evening...as if!...with 3 feuding children ?......i think a few hours on the ruddy treadmill would be more relaxing !.
P.S if you would like to help us out with this event, click on the menu titled "more" on the advertisement on the post below, then you can print off and distribute them to any places that you think i may have missed...although with the amount of she leather i have burned so far up and down the KTC and the hospital towers, i don't think there are many notice boards left on the site!...but feel free to post them in any locations that you think may encourage folk to join. Thanks :-)
Saturday, 16 May 2009
|Bone Marrow Donors - a Personal Expeience|
Contact the A.N.T on: 020 7284 1234
Thanks again for reading this blog :-)
Friday, 15 May 2009
Yesterday I received a PDF file attached to a message from Nigel Gorvett of the Anthony Nolan Trust. Only 500 or so KB of data in total, barely half a megabyte, but contained within these binary files could possibly be the key to saving a life.Let me explain.
The files that I talk of contained the data to print 3 posters.Each one has the heading "Join for Joel",one contains details about the Bone Marrow donor session at Newark, one about the session at King's Mill, and the last contains info about both. I suppose what i am trying to point out is that something as small as a 500k PDF file may just possibly be able to convey the appeal for potential bone marrow donors to attend one of the sessions, and this in turn could lead to someone, somewhere finding a match that may possibly save their life.In the same way, when i sometime feel as though bothering to try to make a difference is a little like "urinating into an oncoming gale", i think that perhaps, just perhaps something that i do may lead to someone being cured, and that to me is worth more than all the money in the world !.
Hopefully, within the next week, Lee Baland, my good friend and graphics expert will turn the content of that little PDF file into vinyl graphics, and this will then be applied to both the Scirocco and the trailer.Once this is done i will tow the "rig" to and from work and spread the word to those that see me on my journey each day, sort of a mobile billboard i suppose, but hey, if that "special" person who is a match for someone who so desperately needs a bone marrow transplant See's the ad, then (much more importantly) does decide to attend one of the sessions and join the A.N.T, that would be just fantastic :-)
P.S If you want a copy of this poster to display at work or anywhere you think that people may be interested in joining the Register, click on the "More" button next to Scribd at the top of the poster and select "Print". You never know, one small action like putting a poster in your local chippy could lead to saving someones life !
Tuesday, 12 May 2009
Here it is....smart or what ?
If only :-)
The reason for having 3 teeth pulled? Well this was due to a slight mishap he had getting on for 2 years ago when he decided that using a piece of card as a makeshift surfboard on the laminate floor of our living room would be "cool and really good fun", and indeed it was as he slid along the floor. Sadly, shortly after he decided it was a good idea, he forgot that he had left the card on the floor and whilst running into the kitchen for something (probably pop,crisps etc!) he found himself taking the sort of tumble that "You've been Framed" pay £250 for....but sadly none of us had a camera rolling !.
The upshot of his rapid coming together with our living room floor was the obligatory trip to Grantham A&E dept where they confirmed the fact that he had indeed used his face as a shock absorber, and the result was a pair of "broken" front teeth...great !.
We were advised that it was expected that his tooshy pegs would inevitably fall out over the next few days/weeks, but they did not, and this is what resulted in myself and Teresa making the trip to Boston with him today to the the NHS tooth fairy "persuade" the offending teeth to leave him and so allow his new ones to take their rightful place and give him the smile that had been missing for oh so long.
Can i at this point just say a great big thank you to all of the staff that made our trip to the hospital so good and stress free to boot. So many times people feel the need to make adverse comments about our health service and the people who work in it, but on this occasion i feel that the whole team who dealt with my sons case should feel justly proud of their work, and made one little boy who is by his own admission, rather afraid of dentists, feel so at ease and comfortable, in fact rather too comfortable as i am sure that he would quite happily have spent the whole day fast asleep on the trolley in recovery if he had been able too!. Great job guys :-)
Saturday, 9 May 2009
After a long and pleasant chat today with the man himself i am pleased to be able to confirm that CPL "Nooky" Nauyokas famed for his role as one of the very loud and very motivating NCO's in the hit TV show "Bad Lads Army" (Currently being re-run on ITV4 on Saturdays 9-10PM), has agreed to assist myself and the Anthony Nolan Trust in promoting the donor recruitment sessions that are scheduled to take place in June 09.
As luck would have it, Nooky lives in Lincolnshire, and (if you are a regular reader of this blog!) you will be aware that last year he very generously offered to assist myself and Glen at the RAF Waddington Airshow when we went there over the 2 days looking to promote and secure donations for our Scirocco " Morocco trip. Lets just say that Nooky has a way of motivating people, and the end result was that the weekend was a resounding success.
In case you don't know what Nooky does, here is an article describing what it is like to be on the receiving end of his wrath....although those that know him are aware that he is actually a very nice man who would fit in well working for the AA !
A day with Bad Lads Army's "Nooky" Nauyokas
And here is a clip from the series Bad Lads Army (ITV). Please note that the language is rather colourful !.
Friday, 8 May 2009
Time for my traditional whinge again I'm afraid, and boy is this subject getting on my nerves !.
Its in relation to the latest revelation about the claims that our trusty MP's (Members of Parliament) are making for such essential items as TV's,DVD's, new beds and such like.
Just caught a glimpse of the news and they report that Hazel Blears has played quite a smart little earner when she got the taxpayer to stump up several hundred quid a month for her mortgage, then sold the property and pocketed £45'000 profit !....nice.Especially as in the current climate thousands of folk are currently struggling to pay for the mortgage on their one and only home, and would be so happy to find that their hard earned taxes are being frittered away and given to these selfish, self gratifying gobshites (it's a father Ted phrase!) who are currently telling us all to tighten our belts and watch our spending......sweet !
Q: What allowances are MPs allowed to claim?
A: On top of an annual salary of £63,291, MPs are entitled to claim for a range of things including staffing, IT equipment, travel, pension provision, communications and housing.
Here are a couple of examples of "legalised fraud",the stuff that your tax pays for..............
A SENIOR Labour peer has been criticised after he claimed nearly £45,000 in overnight expenses to stay in a property he inherited from his late mother.
Welsh Secretary Paul Murphy claimed over £3,000 on expenses to fit a new boiler because he believed his water was "too hot", it is reported.
Minister Hazel Blears claimed for three homes in one year and spent nearly £5,000 on furniture in three months.A spokesman for Ms Blears said she had done nothing wrong and the furnishings she had bought were "reasonable".
"Hazel is honest as the day is long," said the spokesman before excusing himself and pointing out the fact that Ms Blears had been at work all day "and we know what is like to work for 25 hours without a break" he added !
And here is a link to the Guardian Website that will really cheer you up!............
Anyway,as long as it's legal, who cares about it being immoral ? :-)
Wednesday, 6 May 2009
Tuesday, 5 May 2009
Excellent story about a fella named Robert Day who saw the diagnosis of AML not as a possible threat to end to his life but as the reason to begin living it.
Read the who;e article here at the Times online website:
Fantastic story and it just goes to prove how sometimes that challenges that we are faced with in our lives are actually able to be turned around and turned into something positive.Well done Robert !
Monday, 4 May 2009
It was my son's birthday today and we decided to go out to a local attraction called Twin Lakes near Melton Mowbray.Apart from the obligatory downpour of rain over the first hour or so of our visit the weather soon cheered up and was what could be called "overcast but acceptable" for the rest of the day.
Today was of course also the day that he received his new Xbox 360, so as you can imagine we have been quite busy since we arrived home playing Lego Indiana Jones........it's a dirty job, but someone has to do it !. Happy 6th birthday Andy :-) .
Saturday, 2 May 2009
Just imagine that Adrian was your son,brother or husband, would you want to be a part of saving his life ?
Thanks for taking the time to watch :-)
Friday, 1 May 2009
Whilst surfing the web today i ended up on YouTube (as you do!), and conducted an experiment.
First i searched the site for video's for the rather fantastic group called "Coldplay", and surprise,surprise there were bl**dy hundreds of postings for various video's etc (approx 150'000...ish!), and the max number of hits on the highest ranking post was over 44 million !.
Susan Boyle (Britains got talent) is even more of an attention magnet....50,072,145 views...in less than 3 weeks !
Then i typed in the word "Leukaemia" (just for a change!) and guess what.....663 video posts......max number of hits ? around 4-5000......ish!.
Question. How do you get the public to take notice of appeals for help with the fight against Leukaemia ? Answer= Get Coldplay or Susan Boyle to do you a promotional video or just state their support for it......but how do you go about getting in touch with these megastars ? That one i am still working on :-)