Saturday, December 31, 2011

Happy New Year from Nokia 6303 ...

... or should I say "allangao" (EBay ID). Somewhere along the (recent) line I managed to lose the USB cable for my old phone. Ordered new one (99p post free) on Thursday evening - informed of "despatch" on Friday morning - arrived today. Positive feedback is certainly deserved here !!

So - on return from theatre tonight (Bolton Octagon's new take on "The Wizard of Oz"), I emptied the random pics off phone ...

Spotted in a lift whilst "at work" - thought it would make a wonderful film - viz "Schindler's Lift" - ho ho !

Typical "pre-Christmas day" at the mail-face - just the packets !

... and a few pix from the "top end of Uppermill" that sort of make all that weight and walking worthwhile ...

Hope you've all had a good - and safe - evening ... our thanks to the residents of Greenfield, Micklehurst, Carrbrook and Stalybridge for laying on the 0000hrs entertainment viewable through our back room window (!!) - not forgetting that football in 2012 starts quite soon ...

Friday, December 30, 2011

Calendar Cock-up ... Now Sorted !

... aahh - those were the days - none of this Jools Holland rubbish !

... mentioned earlier about having to forgo Curzon Ashton v Mossley for the sake of Stalybridge Celtic v Hyde FC on Monday January 2nd ... fortunately a number of peeps have pointed out to me that the Stalybridge game is actually on Sunday January 1st - and I can do both games (applied for - and granted) - ergo result !

Enjoying a welcome day off today after yesterday's awful weather (together with HUGE Saga magazines and bloody holiday brochures !) - back in tomorrow mind (working in Ashton apparently - not been there for a good few months !). New Years Eve sees a trip to the theatre as well with Mrs Smiffy and Mother-in-Law before home for the 2359 kerfuffle - bring back Andy Stewart I say...

Monday, December 26, 2011

Drab ? Mossley v Cammell Laird

Errr yes ... 0-0 against bottom-of-the-table ... plenty of shots by Mossley (pix much much later - about to go out for the evening !) but no finished product - awful crowd of 124 as well - reckon everyone went to Hyde - 1868 at Ewen Fields !

Laters ...

(DAFT o'CLOCK EDIT - pictures at Mossley 0 Cammell Laird 0)

Copping Out Today ...

... Mossley v Cammell Laird it is then (expecting grumbles from Stalybridge and Hyde fans !). However, on January 2nd I'll go for the Stalybridge v Hyde game (expecting grumbles from the Mossley and Curzon Ashton fans !).

Damned if you do - damned if you don't ...

(and just for info - a new laptop battery, new CF card for camera, a paellera + Spanish cookbook, a new jumper - well I am "old" ! - and loads of beer !)

Saturday, December 24, 2011

The holiday begins !

Isn't Photoshop wonderful !!!

... an early start today (0615hrs !) in the hope of an early finish - and after the way things have gone this week I'm reckoning that a 1330 hrs finish WAS early. A small "celebratory libation" in a local hostelry before home (and the big bugger luminous coat straight into the wash - it needed one !) - an early Christmas present turned up as well - the RM Issue big Caterpillar "bovver boots" (which WILL need breaking in a bit mind - have had them on around the house for an hour or so) !!

So Christmas can finally begin - so it's begun with roasting up a small joint of beef (after giving it a honey and mustard glaze) for chopping up into cold cuts. A few pressies to wrap later as well. Tonight's festive extravaganza will be ... pizzas - and why not !!!

Anyway - on behalf of the entire "Six Tame Sides" staff (of one !) I'd like to wish all readers a very pleasant Christmas - at least this year (unlike 12 months ago) we're all probably guaranteed some football on Boxing Day. It's just a bloody shame that there's pretty much NO public transport on Boxing Day to enable those who like the odd "tincture" to arrive at games in safety. Myself - I really ought to be thinking about Hyde FC v Stalybridge Celtic ... but it's the getting there !!! Mossley (five minute walk) are at home to Cammell Laird so eco-thinking says that one (and I can have a drink or five as well !). Guess I'll have to see how I feel on Boxing Day morning.

Have a good 'un folks ...

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Another Miserable Night for Football

It wasn't quite as bad at work - at least dry - but instead of being hammered by packets we were hammered by mail (a shed load of "held back 2nd class" was thrown at us today !). Still - it's all money (yep more o/t !).

Tonight was a miserable night for football - that incessant fine drizzle "that wets you right through" - plays havoc with the photography as well. 'Twas another "late late show" from Stalybridge - not dissimilar to seven days ago - where from being 1-0 down at half-time they sneaked a late winner, this time courtesy of a Craig Hobson penalty. Not been through all the pix yet (and I'll struggle tomorrow as well - we have visitors in the evening), but here's one of Mitchell Austin to be going on with ...

... at least it proves "I was there !"

Bear with me - as they say ...

Monday, December 19, 2011

Another Week from Hell begins ...

Aftermath from today - all radiators etc fully booked !

... with 2 hours of overtime and a frozen aching body - a truly horrible horrible day - the Sunday snow turned into cold Monday rain (it was like walking through rivers of slush at times ... new RM "bovver boots" still to arrive, so bloody trainers are now stuffed with newspaper) - a mountain of packets and parcels (reckon I took a "few too many" - I'm much too nice to our drivers !!). Sodden feet then almost from the off - and by 1630 they were like blocks of ice as the temperature dropped. Followed by a shivering 20 minute wait for a bus home ...

The upside appears to be a dramatic improvement in the weather over the next few days (whoo hoo !) - but I'm sure the packets will get worse ... and worse - will have to be more brutal with my choices, because naturally you end up with an overflowing "final bag" - full of mail and packets ... and all the bloody undeliverable ones as well (many of which were in less than satisfactory condition by the time I got back to the local Post Office - bugger all I can do about it though - suggestions here revolve around larger letter boxes or "Safeplace" options (read about it here - how many people are aware of this service ?? Not many I guess ... they really come into their own at this time of year).

The weather improvement might help the "closest football option" for tomorrow night though - we'll see.

And DON'T FORGET - last posting day tomorrow for 1st class letters/card (ever the helpful postie !!)

Saturday, December 17, 2011

Football - You're having a Giraffe !!!

When it came to the crunch - absolutely no chance today !

Wdenesday/Thursday/Friday have been "bad" at work (OK think of the overtime but ...) - today was bloody crazy - even getting in an hour early ... I finished at 1630 hrs (yes half-bloody-four on a Saturday - !) - the weather didn't help much either - starting in snow, that then turned to slush which towards the end of the walk was starting to ice over ... aargh !

Just for interest - you may have heard on the grapevine/newsvine about the extra investment that Royal Mail has put into the Christmas period (here's the story) ... HOWEVER ... you'll notice that nowhere does it say anything about recruiting extra delivery staff - and there's the rub - we're getting the packets quicker, more efficiently ... but there's still the same number of posties trying to deliver the bloody stuff. Madness - absolute madness. Hence my very late finish today (and Wednesday and Thursday and Friday !).

Furthermore the usual tales are starting to filter through about casuals being found thieving stuff - and I'm getting envelopes arriving which I can see have been neatly slit down the side - makes me sick ... and also embarrassed to deliver them - I now keep a number of official "damage bags" in my postie bag in case I come across them whilst out).

Football-wise ... I noted that the Droylsden game against Corby was off - Hyde beat Vauxhall 4-2 - Stalybridge got a late late equaliser at Solihull - both Ashtons got a 1-1 draw (United at Mickleover and Curzon at home to Witton) - and Mossley got stuffed 4-1 at Salford.

Hopefully some midweek football ... somewhere - two possibles on Tuesday - either Stalybridge (v Northwich Vics in the Cheshire Senior Cup) ... or Woodley Sports (v Kendal Town in the Doodson - i.e. League - Cup) ... Woodley's pretty much guaranteed (due to 3G pitch) - but minds will be made up closer to the time.

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Stalybridge Celtic v Stockport County ...

... the FA Trophy replay at Bower Fold last night was certainly a game of two halves ... after 45 minutes Celtic were 1-0 down and it wasn't looking good at all. However, probably a combination of a half-time verbal blast from boss Jim Harvey, playing downhill and playing towards the Celtic fans all led to a complete turnaround - with a late late winner being the icing on the cake. Pictures at

Stalybridge Celtic 2 Stockport County 1

So the next round sees Stalybridge away at Guiseley and Droylsden away at Kidderminster Harriers (managed of course by ex-Stalybridge boss Steve Burr) ... but that's for next year ... some intriguing league games before all that - for all the Six Tame Sides ...

Yes it WAS Cold !

... and a win for Stalybridge Celtic - a few quickies for now - can't be doing with going through 'em all - expecting a "poo" day at work later so sleep is a good idea ...

Celtic's equaliser ...

The shot - that turned into ...

2-1 for Celtic !

As I'm expecting a hard day at the mail face tomorrow - that's y'lot f'now ! A full album will appear tomorrow evening - I hope !

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

It's Gonna be Cold Tonight ...

... at home warming up after a cold day out ...

... all ready to get cold again tonight ... (albeit with thermal sox, fleecy lined walking trooz, three layers underneath coat - with zip-in fleece, woolly hat (RM Issue) and fingerless gloves - hope it's enough).

Forget the weather tomorrow - there have been early reports of a "Severe Mail Warning" for tomorrow - aargh !

Monday, December 12, 2011

Poster Time - Part Two ...

That's what you do on your day off - especially when the weather is "too poo" to go out for a walk - OK a trip to the recycling was followed by a trip to the supermarket, but after that ... a "Lazy Sunday Afternoon" in front of the lcd screen - and now we have two posters up and running (double-click for big !) ...

"Six Tame Sides" and "Stalybridge Celtic"

... next stop a Mossley one I guess (and you can bet on "poo weather" next Sunday I'm sure !!).

Did a couple of hours overtime today - as in one walk in Uppermill and then half of one in Greenfield - it was getting extremely dark when I was finishing (new walk as well so the phrase "blind walk" came into play in more ways than one ... time to re-think that "head torch" idea - got one last year off EBay - it was cheap - and totally useless !

Football tomorrow night ? Has to be Stalybridge Celtic v Stockport County in the FA Trophy replay ...

Sunday, December 11, 2011

Mossley v Clitheroe Pictures

... now up at

Mossley 0 Clitheroe 0

Could have gone either way (at least in the 45 minutes I saw) but I guess a point each was a fair result - bloody awful weather yet again !!

Saw a really wacky play at the Royal Exchange tonight - "You Can't Take it With You" - a revival of a 1930s Broadway hit about a totally eccentric family whose daughter falls in love with the son of a Wall Street banker-type. Absolutely manic - but great fun !

Looking forward to a restful day tomorrow before another (probable) week of mayhem at the mail/packet face ...

Saturday, December 10, 2011

Well - I Got 45 minutes !

... another manic day ... finished at about 1500hrs - aargh - so Stockport was a no-no anyway. By the time I got home, sorted myself out and walked up the road, the half-time whistle was blowing. Got in the club just in time to see someone texting me the latest score (!!) - as in 0-0.

And that's the way it finished - another miserable day weather-wise (morning, noon and after-bloody-noon) - and I managed the grand total of 35 pictures - which will be looked at later as we're off to Manchester for theatre-type stuff in 10 minutes ...

I will return ...

(on the bright - some will say selfish - side, Stalybridge drew @ Stockport - so game on for Tuesday night !)

Friday, December 09, 2011

Football Tomorrow ?

Well the plan is (or was) Stockport County v Stalybridge Celtic in the FA Trophy - being the true "pro snapper" (!!) that I am, I felt it only wise to get in touch with Stockport vis-a-vis photo accreditation (thinking that you can't just turn up at a professionally-run ex-Football League club like Stockport). Sent them an e-mail on Monday evening asking for same, noting down my experience, recent newspaper exposure, Conference Photographer Licence holder for the last two seasons (they're not doing them this season for some reason !?!) , holder of £2million Public Liability Insurance etc etc...

No reply ...

So ... what to do ? Naturally the biggest "IF" is whether I finish work at a time to enable me to get to Stockport (because it's started to get a bit daft at work - "going postal" is the phrase !). Plus I (and Mrs Smiffy) are off to the theatre tomorrow night (no idea what we're watching mind !) ... it could get REALLY scary insofar as I have to drive to Stockport (no beer), blag my camera in, do football, drive back to Mossley (still no beer) and then catch train to Manchester (no beer on train) ... scary or what ??

If it all goes completely to c*ck - Mossley are at home to Clitheroe (aka "Pride of Lancashire") ... but having looked out of the window 20 minutes ago to see snow falling ... God knows ...

Thursday, December 08, 2011

Just for a Change ... an Album Review ...

... got my hands on a copy of "Imaginaerium" by NightWish today (cheers Dunc !!). I've always been a bit of a fan of this "symphonic metal" style of music (especially NightWish and Within Temptation - Lacuna Coil have a bit of a go at it as well).

I'll be honest - "Dark Passion Play" (NightWish previous album) passed me by - so this was the first time I'd heard the 'new' vocalist Annette Olzon - who replaced Tarja Turunen. First thoughts (have only listened once while cooking tea - we're now transferring "Time Honoured Ghosts" by Barclay James Harvest from 12" vinyl to computer to CD !!) are ... very good. Don't think she's as classically trained as Tarja or Sharon den Ardel (Within Temptation) - more like Christina Scabbia - Lacuna Coil - "more raw" if you like.

The album itself - quite eclectic if you like - some good heavy tracks a la "Once" ("Rest Calm" for example) - but also some different stuff as well - a touch of jazz ("Slow Love Slow"), a touch of Irish ("I Want my Tears Back"/"Turn Loose the Mermaids") - and a big finish at the end (the 13 minute "Song of Myself").

A few more listens required - but sounds promising so far ...

Wednesday, December 07, 2011

As Promised ...

... the "Death of a Memory Card" ...

Mossley v Garforth - Take Two

STS bonus pic - Nathan Neequaye on the move ...

So Mossley take the lead - Garforth equalise - and it all goes to c*ck after that. It seems to be a regular occurence unfortunately ... once an equaliser goes in things start to go wrong - inexperience, lack of real confidence, lack of a "Plan B", I don't really know. Like I said it seemed that the Garforth team talk worked better than t'other one. A truncated set of pix I'm afraid (as so many of the pictures were ... truncated !)

Mossley 1 Garforth Town 2

Tempted to do a video of memory card meeting hammer ...

Heavy day at work as well today - state of things to come.


Oh Dear - Mossley v Garforth

Not only did Mossley lose 2-1 - after taking the lead ... but I appear to have a major "Memory Card Problem" - witness ...

Some appear to have worked - I'll check them out later - other than that it's "ByeBye" to the errant CF card.

One that DID work - a slo-mo rain effort !

... and the less said about the game the better ... suffice to say the Garforth half-time team talk appeared to be a damn sight better than the Mossley equivalent ...


Tuesday, December 06, 2011

Would You Believe It ?

You might think to double-click ... but the big bold ON gives it away ... Mossley v Garforth it is then ... wonder if there might be a minutes' silence for Socrates tonight ?

Monday, December 05, 2011

Winter Draws On ...

... and thermal vests as well today - woke up to snow/hail on the ground - train to Greenfield was delayed, so had to catch the bus to work (in Uppermill this week). Riddle me this - a return ticket to Greenfield on the train (which then involves a 10 minute walk to Uppermill - no prob for a postie) costs £2-20. A single from Mossley to Uppermill on the bus costs £2-80 - hmmm ...

New walk today - and grim weather most of the day - so finished a "touch late" (!!!) - by the time I got home I was knackered. Found out that the Hyde FC v Eastwood Town game had been called ON (Hyde are 1-0 up as we speak - 2020hrs) but had already started cooking tea - and to be honest, having been cold and wet (and occasionally lost !) all day I just didn't fancy it - what a slacker !). I'm not holding out too much hope for Mossley's home game tomorrow either (but you never know).

Off to slouch/lounge/sleep in front of the telly now ...

Sunday, December 04, 2011

What an EXCELLENT Idea !

Spotted this on the Mossley Message Board (courtesy "Gadgie") - what do you think ?

Dear Mr. Cameron,

Please find below our suggestion for fixing the UK 's economy.

Instead of giving billions of pounds to banks that will squander the money on lavish parties and unearned bonuses, use the following plan.

You can call it the Patriotic Retirement Plan:

There are about 10 million people over 50 in the work force.

Pay them £1 million each severance for early retirement with the following stipulations:

1) They MUST retire.
Ten million job openings - unemployment fixed

2) They MUST buy a new British car.
Ten million cars ordered - Car Industry fixed

3) They MUST either buy a house or pay off their mortgage -
Housing Crisis fixed

4) They MUST send their kids to school/college/university -
Crime rate fixed

5) They MUST buy £100 WORTH of alcohol/tobacco a week .....
And there's your money back in duty/tax etc

I'm up for it !!

Stalybridge Celtic v Boston United

"Pineapple" long since gone - Jason Lee and Greg Wilkinson challenge

Just been looking at some "football" pix from this time last year - I suppose we should be thankful for small mercies. Even so, the 'postponement season' has begun with a couple of Evo-Stik North games falling foul of the weather yesterday (including Mossley's trip to Prescot Cables). As predicted the 'Christmas Rush' has begun on the post, so I was struggling to get done for a decent time yesteday (already looking ominous for next Saturday's hopeful trip to Stockport County !). Managed to just make the 1430 fast bus from Mossley to Stalybridge, and a quick yomp up the Mottram Road saw me arrive safe and well (just in time for a pre-match tipple - hurrah !).

It was cold - it was damp - but it was, in the end a comfortable win for the home side. They did leave it rather late, with two goals in the last five minutes to give the score (3-0) a more realistic feel. Some pictures at

Stalybridge Celtic 3 Boston United 0

Once again a bit of a struggle towards the end , not just with the light but with the cold and wet and "wind chill". Also a bit peed off - I took up station on the edge of the Boston penalty area with 85mm lens at the start of the second half, only for 90% of the play to be constricted to midfield - so put 70-200mm on and shifted round towards the halfway line, only to miss the chance of a few decent hits on the two late goals. Such are the perils of not having a "proper game plan", and trying to get an overview of the whole game rather than deciding, for example, "Celtic will score a few and I will concentrate solely on that".

Maybe Tuesday night then - although weather is pretty grim again today (not looking too brilliant early next week either !).

Enough for now - a "day indoors" is on the cards - dry off gear from yesterday, dry off me from nipping out for the "Non League Paper" an hour ago, and maybe some Christmas planning as well - oh and put new camera strap on camera !!!

Friday, December 02, 2011

A Birthday Present !

... had a bit of a bash tonight (well for everyone else it's Friday and no work tomorrow !) - posh food (cassoulet) and all the family around. Tonight was also "present night" - although I did get a portfolio thing yesterday to put all my newspapers/top pix etc in - excellent move.

However - tonight ... I received this ...

The "ultimate" in posing - a personalised camera strap !!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Just need to learn how to fix it to the bloody camera now - it might well make an appearance at Stalybridge tomorrow !

Ashton Game Revisited

... I was suffering from "internet grief" last night - and probably a few "birthday beers" as well !! Realised today that the pix had missed out the "noise reduction" phase of getting them together - so have had another bash at them - in fact some are better and some are not imho. Whatever ...

AshtonWhitby Game - Take 2

Mail (more especially packets) starting to get scary ... fingers crossed I'll be at Bower Fold sometime near 1500 hrs tomorrow to see the Stalybridge Celtic v Boston United game.

Ashton United v Whitby Town

Almost but not quite - stand-in 'keeper Sam Madeley

I start to wonder whether I'm some kind of "Bad Luck Charm" up at Hurst Cross - seems every time I go I see a red card - an Ashton United red card. Wednesday night saw Ashton keeper Terry Smith sent off very early on, and Ashton putting up an heroic rearguard action for the best part of 80 minutes with striker Sam Madeley donning the gloves. In fact Ashton even took the lead through Chris Amadi before conceding two very late goals. There's a few negative comments going around - but I reckon the "ten man" put up a great performance for 80 minutes before finally succumbing - maybe they should have "pushed on" a bit - but maybe they'd have then lost by a far heavier score. In my eyes anyway - no disgrace - the Robins just seem to get some fearful bad luck at times (they also lost Mark Peers through injury so ...). Some pix at

Ashton United 1 Whitby Town 2

A heavy day at the mail-face - followed by meatballs for tea !!!