Sunday, February 08, 2015

Bloody cyclists; The Santiago rail crash; Insults; Gypsies; Drug family; Global Warming; BBC balls; Gears; & Anna.

Hard to believe, perhaps, but there's a group of people even more anti-cyclist than me. A Spanish safety organisation - fed up with 'leniency' towards cyclists 'creating risky situations' - is calling for registration, reflective jackets, helmets and third party insurance to be made compulsory. They are, says the organisation, ‘effectively immune’ to liability for accidents they cause, including injury or damage suffered by pedestrians. And they should be fined for not respecting road signs and markings. Amen to all that, say I. Even if it does smack of going to the opposite extreme. The group even goes so far as to say that pavements and footpaths should not be adapted to include cycle lanes, as pedestrians and bikes 'do not go together' and accidents are very likely when they coincide. I would have thought this depended on the width but I guess this assumes the cyclists would remain in the bike lane. Which does actually happen. In Germany.

Everyone will recall the horrendous rail crash outside Santiago de Compostela 18 months ago. Some will remember that all relevant executives of the track and train companies were acquitted of all charges by the investigating judge. And that the only person in the dock remains the hapless driver. Well, a new expert's report endorses the view that bad decisions were taken in respect of safety, in the face of both resistance from engineers and, later, complaints by drivers about risk. Additionally, there was negligence in the servicing of the train's brakes 2 days before the crash. So, we wait to see whether any executives will return to the bench or whether the trial will remain a whitewash of both the suits and the politicians responsible. Some of the latter, it's claimed, revised the planned works so that the line would be 'finished' in time for regional elections. Who'd be surprised?

I showed the list of 221 Spanish insults to my friends of a Friday dinner. To a man, they were scornful of the suggestion the list was either comprehensive or up-to-date. I rather got the impression they felt they could compile another list of at least 221 more modern insults. What a language!

Well, February 3 came and went and the illegal houses in the gypsy settlement at the bottom of the hill were not demolished. A new date has been set for this coming week but I fear this show will run and run.

There was a nice foto of one of our local drug barons in the papers yesterday, looking like a lawyer or a banker and insisting he'd got his huge fortune by smuggling only cigarettes in the 90s. The judge declined to believe him and jailed him for 6 years, plus a fine of €21.5m. Various other family members were also jailed, including his daughter, the lawyer.

Global Warming: See here for the posing of a good question. 

I occasionally turn on the subtitles to BBC programs and have noticed the occasional mistake born of simultaneous 'translation'. But nothing as amusing as them referring to the Chinese Year of the Horse as the "Year of the Whores".

Finally . . .I read a review yesterday of a new Honda car with 9 gears. And here's me wondering why mine has just 6. Is this, I wonder, related to the fact that the car is a 4x4?

Finally, finally . . .  I've just been contact by a 'happy, sociable' young lady called Anna. She's so keen to meet me, she's sent me the same message 7 times, albeit with different headings.

No comments:

Search This Blog