Best Videos EVER (Part 2)

Best Videos EVER (Part 2)

10. Boobas New Shoes

11. Arab Drifting

12. Holy Ghost VS Pendulum & MC GQ – Baptazia

13. Dont fall asleep at the game

14. Reporter turns ghetto in 3 seconds

15. Thrust SSC goes supersonic

This one just blows my mind!  I always thought it was just driving in a straight line, but this shows different.  Watch out for the full steering lock and the line “700(mph)… just about in control… on the wrong line… don’t worry about it…”.  That’s about as close to death as it gets!

16. Travis Pastrana Backflip Tricycle

17. Terry Tate – Office Linebacker – Original Pilot

18. Crossing a Colombian bridge

Hope you enjoyed them as much as I do!

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Best Videos EVER (Part 1)

Best Videos EVER (Part 1)

You have to admit that YouTube is just brilliant!  So many hours have disappeared after I just went to watch one video clip on there, and then spent the rest of the night clicking links.  So I thought I’d share my personal favourites from over the years with you!

I hope you enjoy these as much as I do, and hope there are at least a few here that you’ve never seen before.

1. Charlie Bit Me

An all-time classic with nearly 10 million views!

2. Cat vs Printer

3. Ice Diving Face Plant

4. Ultimate Sleeper Drag

I love the sound of this one, and the reaction of the crowd!

5. Hairdryer prank

6. Stick Guns

Awesome short film that takes me back to my childhood!

7. Interrupting a parade WIN

8. The Ultimate Pisshead!

9. Japanese Crystal Ball Performer (Contact Juggling)

Easter Piss-Me-Off

Easter Piss-Me-Off

I wake up -ing angry.  This is mainly because I know I’ll spend the day getting pissed off by dickheads.

Speaking of waking up angry, don’t you just hate it when you get woken up a minute or two before your alarm goes off?  A measly two minutes early and suddenly we’re talking full-on rage!

Anyway, it’s the Easter Holidays, when the Zombie Jesus rose from his grave to eat fish, bread and brains, so in His honour, I’m going to -ing rant about people who need to be having their mouths kicked open.

The first is car drivers who drive at 50mph in a 60mph zone, holding everyone up, and then when the speed limit drops to a 40mph zone they STILL carry on doing 50mph through it!

What the fk?!?!  If you can’t drive at 60mph because it’s ‘too fast’, then what the FK is going through your head to think you can safely speed through somewhere where the speed limit probably IS there for a reason?

I swear to God I will ram you spastics off the road when I get bull bars fitted to the Mighty Uno!

And what’s with Multi-pack crisps?!

Fine – you pay less because you buy your crisps (that’s “potato chips” or “corn chips” to you ‘Merkin types) in bulk, 6 or 12 packs at a time.  But is it just me that’s noticed that these packets are SMALLER than the ones you can buy individually??

Oh right, so you’re going to give us less food and charge us less for it as if we should be grateful?

FK you!

All that happens is we eat the crisps and find there aren’t enough of the bastards in the bag, so we end up having two bags instead!  Then we get fat and you, the Crisp Kingpins, are CUNTS!

And they also pull this shti with beer!

You should ONLY be able to buy beer in 500ml cans, or possibly the ‘full pint’ cans of 568ml.  What are 440ml cans for, other than to rip us off with ‘cheaper’ multipacks just like crisps??

The final thing is people names.

In my new position as a Legal Monkey, I have to deal with the names of solicitors.  This is fine when it brings such joys as Fiorella Antonella Marchitelli (just say it out loud – it’s beautiful!), but then not much help at all with names like Mr Ranpatabendige Harshadeva Weerawarna Nilaweera.  Spell that sucker out phonetically, and that’s your 12 hour shift in!

And don’t get me started on Miss Fathima Sharmila Galpoththegedara Cader Meera Saibuge Jeinulabdeen… (genuine names, these!!!)

Why can’t they just stick to normal names like Tarquinn Piggeldy-Smythe?

I Will Swap All My Organs For A ZX10R!

I Will Swap All My Organs For A ZX10R!

I figured if I’m going to get my ZX9R on track this year, I should at least get the valve clearances done to make sure all is well.  I’m sure I could handle this job myself, but can’t be arsed fiddling about getting shims etc, so booked the bike into about the only motorcycle mechanics I still trust to touch my bike – Stealth Motorcycles of Redditch.

Expecting to be bikeless for a while, I was chuffed to the core when a mate offered to lend me his ZX10R Ninja.  And a bit scared.

If I hadn’t been made redundant last year, this is the bike that I would have been buying for myself just about now!  I couldn’t wait to get on it and see what it was like.

So after some quick pre-flight checks and asking what I should be watching out for, I swung my leg over the big black beast for the first time… And all my expectations after this have been shattered!

The bike is a bit smaller dimensionally than my 9R.  And it’s lighter.  And has around 40 horsepower more.

I pottered dow the road, noting that the throttle is a little snatchy at low revs (no doubt just the injectors) but it was all very smooth and well-behaved.  I arrived at a junction and stalled it – again, no drama, it’s just a much more sensitive clutch than I’m used to.

I pulled away smoothly and glanced down at the digital speed readout to see WHAT THE HELL?!?

Pulling virtually no revs with no effort whatsoever the speedo just shoots up.  I know my bike is no slouch, but when you’re trying to get to 60mph fast you know you’re giving it beans.  On the 10R you have no idea until you look down.

With absolutely no drama, and barely a wail from the twin Akrapovic cans it will just grab an illegal number and slap it up on the speedo display with seemingly nothing in between.

The power bogs down a tiny bit below 4000rpm, but above that it’s totally smooth all the way to, well, it says 12,000rpm but I don’t think I’ve even seen the shift light come on yet!  The twin cans sound a lot quieter than I expected – but then that’s whilst I’m sat above and in front of them – the rest of the world may have a different opinion on their sound levels.  To reel it all back in the brakes have amazing feel, and are very progressive whilst having more than enough power to pull you up in a hurry.  They’re perfect.

Suspension is pretty hard, and the bumps do throw you around a bit.  To be honest this is exactly how I prefer my bikes set up, and I’m sure a few twists of the adjusters would soon get it all working to your tastes.

What is clear is that the bike is awesome in the corners!  It goes EXACTLY where you want it whenever you want it there, and you can feel how perfectly balanced it all is.  Within minutes of riding it I was already fully confident keeping me feet on the pegs and balancing at traffic lights without a single wobble.

When you drop it into the corners it just tracks as if it’s on rails.  After only a couple of hours I can already feel it’s the best handling bike I’ve ridden on the roads.  In fact I’d say that it’s at the very least equal to the track bikes I’ve hired in the past.

In short, this 2006 Kawasaki ZX10R is such an amazing piece of kit, it’s unreal.  It would flatter any rider – even a total novice.  Its limits are always just on the horizon, teasing you to just have a go and see if you can get anywhere near them – but of course the closer you think you are to them, you realise they’re still miles away!  If a toddler could reach the controls he’d be in shot of getting a TT podium finish on one of these – they’re THAT good and easy to ride fast!

The scariest thing about it is just how tame it is.  I was expecting to be fighting it everywhere to keep it in line, but the reality is that it will do exactly what you tell it to do – be that pootling through a 30mph zone in heavy traffic to cruising fast sweeping bends without ever worrying you may have overcooked a corner.

I did find I was getting pins and needles in my right thumb and wrist when riding through built-up areas, but otherwise the bike was perfectly comfortable and would be easy to ride all year round without any problems.

I would LOVE to try one on a racetrack.

I would also now swap every organ in my body for one!  What an unbelieveable machine!

180 Miles Around SAS Territory

180 Miles Around SAS Territory

With another sunny day, I took a last minute decision, topped the oil up, strapped the cameras on the bike and picked a place on a map.

Brecon.

I know of Brecon as the place of fame where the SAS train.  As I’d also be riding through Hereford where their base is, I thought this would be fitting for an SAS day out.  Plus I’d have a rucksack on, even if I wasn’t planning on lugging it around on foot.

The last time I’d ridden these routes were about 8 years ago on a ZXR400, where I’d had a bit of a play with a brand spanking new Honda Civic Type R on the twisty and undulating fast roads from Worcester to Hereford.  I was quite impressed at the speed, even though I still don’t really like the look of the cars.

After getting sidetracked (not lost!!!) in Worcester centre, I eventually found my way back to these roads and wasn’t disappointed.

This ‘ere be zider country!

Much as I love Shropshire countryside, I have to say that Herefordshire is also well up there.  There were some awesome views of the Malvern Hills off to the side of the road, and loads of other pointy-scenery-bits as I passed through the far side of Hereford, too.

I also made a random stop-off at a pub just outside Hereford called ‘The Swan’, just about making last orders for their extremely good Sunday Carvery with very friendly staff.  Still no bloody bread sauce, but for £7.95 it was one of the best I’ve had!

Turning off towards Brecon everything suddenly went all Welsh.  The countryside opened up with huge filthy great straights and random letters thrown onto roadsigns to try and make the reader spit.

I actually never thought Brecon was over the Welsh border until I saw the sign.  Feck knows what Welsh region it’s technically a part of?  I just know that I should state somewhere that this part of the journey was now in Wales, and not England, because the Welsh get all uppity about things like that.  They’re happy to be British to claim dual glory of English activities, but when anything is specifically Welsh the United Kingdom can piss off because it’s THEIRS!

As ever, when riding around places like this, I was keeping one eye on the sky to see what bewinged creatures were mooching about the place.  I saw a hawk sat on a telephone cable, but the literally big news was the Buzzards down that way.  Lots of them, and they are MASSIVE!

Coming into Brecon there are several Army-type bases.  I was going to get a picture of my bike in front of one of them, but then figured they might shoot me as a terrorist, so carried on sharpish.

Now I know where the Brecon Beacon(s) is (are?), I shall be planning a future picnic there with a day out having a walk about the place.

I didn’t see any SAS soldiers this time – but they’re sneaky!  Next time, and with a chilli, ham and cheese roll in my hand, I shall do some proper spec-op spotting!

Getting The ZX9R On Track

Getting The ZX9R On Track

I’ve always hired bikes for trackdays.  The way I see it, although it is quite expensive, is that you’re getting the use of a dogs bollocks expertly set up and prepared race bike with super-sticky tyres, brakes that pop your eyeballs out every time you touch them, and generally an ability much better than you’ll have as the rider.

I’d highly recommend trying Lady Snoots for hire bikes from a great bloke, and also Smallboy and Pattracking I had no faults with whatsoever.  The Focused Events trackbikes of a few years ago were shitters.  They did the job, but they were blatantly cutting all the corners they could by using (old) sports-touring tyres and maintaining them like your average ped rider.  Things do seem to have changed, but they’re still expensive…  The biggest pisser is that you HAVE to use their own hire bikes on Focused Events days…

Anyway, my main reason for hiring was that my bike was my only transport.  This has now changed now I have a license and car, and if I dropped the ZX9R and it was off the road for a while for repairs it wouldn’t be the end of the world.

So with funding nowhere near what it was after my redundancy, it makes sense to cut the costs by getting the 9r out on track this year.

It will still be a compromise, but I want to do it for as little cost as possible.

Ideally, I’d want: Full race fairing, race compound brake pads, aftermarket rearsets (I scrape my pegs in normal road riding!), some kind of protection for my engine covers, and sticky race tyres – possibly even a spare set of wheels.

The reality is that this would cost as much as it would to hire bikes for a couple of trackdays…

So, after scouring Ebay for race fairings (£340 from China!), I’ve decided that I’m just going to go for it with the bike in standard trim.  If I do come a cropper, THEN I can buy a new fairing and replace the parts.  I’ll just have to try my best not to come a cropper!  But thinking about it I was well within my limits on the hire bikes, as I didn’t want to be liable for paying out the crash deposit!

What’s left to worry about?

Tyres.  I use Pirelli Angel ST’s on the road, because they give a combination of awesome grip from cold, massive mileage, and just do everything better than any other road tyre.  On track I’m sure they will overheat and slide around a bit – but am I capable/willing to push them that hard for them to become a problem?  I shall just have to try it and see…

Ground clearance could be an issue, as I’m not afraid of leaning the bike over even on the roads.  Someone from ZX-9R.net came up with an ingenious solution of taping a 5p coin in the hinge of the footpeg to raise them and give a few degrees more ground clearance, and so I may well try that.

Whatever – I can hear the call of the racetrack again, and I need to get back out there SOON!

Plus it would be great to have a few photographs of me on track riding my own bike!

Watch this space!

Bottom Of The Legal Monkey Tree

Bottom Of The Legal Monkey Tree

It’s probably about time I gave you a Job Update, because I know some of you are nosey buggers.

I had a weeks training before starting the job, which was a mixture of information overload, boring procedures, learning how to use several (flawed, of course) databases, and a bit of a laugh with the trainers other trainee Monkeys, too!

I started wondering what the Hell would take us a week to learn for a job that is essentially at the bottom of the Legal Monkey Tree (especially as we’d already gone through a gruelling half day interview to get that far), and finished up realising that nothing can ever really prepare you for any job where you will be dealing primarily with The Public.

Public Monkeys are a whole new kettle of fish.  Whatever you think you know about a job, some Public Monkey will find something to completely stump or even shock you.

I basically have to provide Public Monkeys and Professional Monkeys with information and resolutions to situations to do with The Law.  This sounds fairly easy, but when you’re plunged into a completely foreign world using all kinds of unfathomable acronyms and technical language, this can be bloody hard work to try and answer the random questions that Public Monkeys will dream up.

On my first day going live, I was a lot like a rabbit caught in headlights.  I knew where the safety of the warren was, and was pretty familiar with the layout of the fields, but with a car bearing down on you like illuminated Death, getting back through the hedgerow without getting splattered was sometimes much harder than expected.

With each passing hour, I am learning more and more, and becoming more relaxed and confident in my ability to do this job.

And then, of course, Public Monkey asks for something so left-field it smashes you in your right ear!

This can be a downside to the job when Public Monkey is angry, knows more than you do about your job, or is just a plain bastard.

This is a definite upside when you can help Public Monkey through their despair, or if they’re a bit… umm… you know… a bit of a Frothy-Mouthed Gaa-Gaa.

A prime example of this so far has been a Monkey who, when offered the choice of legal aid for his case, launched into a rant about how legal aid was:

a) A Government Conspiracy.
b) A way for The Rich to keep The Poor down, and
c) A Satanic Conspiracy.

We’re not allowed to express any kind of opinion on Legal Monkey matters, but can you imagine just how much I was dying to ask about this last one?  Especially as Public Monkey was telling me all this very calmly and rationally, as I’d gained his trust and was now his friend.  And he stated these three facts about legal aid THREE times!

I fully appreciate he’s probably a Nut-Nut, but I would LOVE to have a pint with that man to hear him out!

There is also the occasional crossover with some of my previous work where we’d often have to work in the grey areas of the law.  These are very interesting to hear, as I’m speaking to the people we’d be working against!

I am finding that after constant phonecalls my voice is knackered towards the end of the day.  It’s almost as if my mouth is exhausted, and some words like ‘statistics’ seem almost impossible to say!  Weird stuff, but I guess I’ll get used to it.  This isn’t being helped by some weird Lurgy that’s affecting my throat and sinuses much like you get at the start of a cold.

Friday is supposed to be the main day for weird calls, so hopefully I’ll get some that I can safely mention on here!

The job looks good!  Helping Monkeys can be very fulfilling – plus there are prospects for climbing further up the tree…

For now just hope they go gentle on me, and my voice holds up.