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PostPosted: Wed Oct 14, 2020 12:18 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

From what I can see, the climbing scene in Nigeria is very under-developed.

Saw a few South African's had been to (and helped organise) a climbing competition there nearly 10 years ago, and bolted a few routes (at Indanre) but haven't seen anything since.

Political / social climate probably doesn't lend itself to such pursuits, although they could drive some extra tourism by promoting it. (Which appears to be what that comp in 2012 was in aid of).

Amazing looking rock, but too hectic for me...I'm a single-pitch kinda guy. Very Happy

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PostPosted: Thu Oct 15, 2020 8:05 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

What does that mean Av - hectic and single-pitch?
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PostPosted: Tue Oct 20, 2020 10:41 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

A single pitch route is one which you can complete on a single length of one rope. By the time (or before) you get to the end of the rope, you can summit / top out / whatever.

Multi-pitch routes, (like El Cap) are ones in which you climb to the end of your rope, attach yourself to a belay station, then belay your second as he climbs up.

Once he arrives at the station, one will remain there on belay while the other climbs the second pitch to the next belay point etc.

adjective: hectic

1. full of incessant or frantic activity.

It has no specific "climbing" meaning. Very Happy But it is frequently used as slang in SA referring to something difficult or requiring a lot of effort. (Physical or otherwise.) Can also be referring to something exciting or fraught or similar.)

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PostPosted: Tue Oct 20, 2020 6:38 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

(Shivers!) Not liking the sound of that 'belay' thing at all Av - not one bit! I get vertigo on a three-steps ladder at work! Last time I climbed up a rope I was wearing short trousers and a tie held on by elastic!

Not happening!

Laughing
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PostPosted: Fri Oct 23, 2020 6:40 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Haha, you're not supposed to climb the rope, the rope is just...insurance. Very Happy

I'm actually thinking about getting back into it again, really need to start getting some exercise.

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PostPosted: Fri Oct 23, 2020 8:11 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

All the insurance I need is to feel the good solid earth between my feet Av! Wink


On the news that the files relating to the testimony of Ghislaine Maxwell (in an earlier case, but pertinent to the conversations she had with Prince Andrew about his accuser, the woman who claims she was sex-trafficed to him at the age of seventeen) are to be released, because a judge has deemed them to be in the "public interest", I feel a kind of dual revulsion and sadness.

That they will be of interest to large numbers for the prurient thrill of the story is undeniable: that more soberly they are of interest because of the light they throw on the behaviour of those in positions of great power and wealth in respect of their dealings with 'lesser' mortals can also be argued. I won't personally read the no doubt many articles that the released files will spawn - I simply haven't the interest in the fine detail of the case. But I do think it sad that, by the evidence of this sorry and sordid affair, there has been no advance of the way that humans treat each other in this respect since the Roman times; that old men of power exercise their ability to abuse young women who by their very inexperience of life are vulnerable to the temptations and pressures of wealth, and then cast them aside like so much chaff when they loose interest in them. Not much changes in respect of human nature with the passage of time it appears.

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PostPosted: Tue Oct 27, 2020 6:12 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

As we progress into what looks to be a pretty rough period over the next few years it should be remembered that the situation is one entirely of the making of the Conservative Party and the Governments they have provided us with over the last decade. The Brexit debacle, the single worst act of self-harm commited by any Western nation upon itself certainly in the post war period was born entirely of wranglings within our ruling party, the spectacularly bad response of the Johnson administration to the Covid pandemic may be laid entirely and unquestionably at their door.

That these two between them have already inflicted, and will continue to inflict damage to our society and economy almost inconceivable a decade ago when David Cameron was first elected PM is indisputable; history books of the future that pertain to this period in UK history will have only two words - Brexit and Covid. While no-one can blame the Tory Party for the Covid crisis itself, it's handling, the economic damage we have sustained, the toll of excess death and long-term debilitation over and above that seen in other countries whose Covid response was initiated faster, organised better, lies entirely at their door. For years the Tories were able to shelter behind the excuse of the parlous state of the economy they inherited to cover their failure, but this will no longer work. So as we proceed, as we reap the ill tasting fruits of the referendum vote and the Covid crisis in the years to come, as we watch our lives work come to naught and see our children denied the luxuries we have enjoyed, not least to be the first generation in what, a hundred years, to see their standard of living reduced from that enjoyed by their parents, look no further than the Conservative Party when searching for whom to blame and try to find someone else to vote for if we ever get another chance to hold another election.
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PostPosted: Tue Oct 27, 2020 12:17 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Sic transit gloria mundi. Wink

--A
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PostPosted: Tue Oct 27, 2020 6:51 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Avatar wrote:
Haha, you're not supposed to climb the rope, the rope is just...insurance. Very Happy

I'm actually thinking about getting back into it again, really need to start getting some exercise.

--A


I was watching a commercial of some people rock climbing the other day and got all moody that I would love to do it again, but may never get the opportunity. I too have always been a single-pitch guy.
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PostPosted: Tue Oct 27, 2020 7:04 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

(peter proud that he knows what single pitch means now! Wink - damn, I almost feel like an expert Laughing )
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PostPosted: Thu Oct 29, 2020 1:33 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Cagliostro wrote:
I was watching a commercial of some people rock climbing the other day and got all moody that I would love to do it again, but may never get the opportunity. I too have always been a single-pitch guy.


Yeah, hanging belays never really appealed to me. Very Happy

Just watched a documentary where a guy got a robotic prosthesis manufactured so that he could climb. Very Happy Don't argue for your limitations, I expect you back on the rock within a year or two. Wink

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PostPosted: Fri Oct 30, 2020 7:57 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Oh dear, oh dear.

I've been working with a new lady at work, sixty years old and an easy work mate who pulls her weight and gets on with the job. A few days ago I asked her what she thought of Boris Johnson the PM and she replied "I don't know much about him, but I vote Conservative because I always have done" (her father had told her to do so and she had never questioned it.) She continued, "I don't have to think about it, I just always do". Last night I commented about the suspension of Jeremy Corbyn over anti-Semitism accusations in the Labour Party and she said, "I know this will sound silly, but what is anti-Semitism - is it to do with being against the Jews?" This lady had voted for Brexit, and when I mentioned about the school meals issue commented "What right have they got to come over here and expect to get free meals for their kids!" (There has, to my knowledge, been no juxtaposition of the immigration debate and the free school meals debate anywhere - anywhere - else as far as I'm aware.)

Another workmate, a guy who I like a lot, but who is not the sharpest pencil in the box, when I asked him why he had voted Brexit, looked at me blankly. After a pause he said one word, "Immigration". A bit of gentle probing established that he knew little or nothing about the subject, about the numbers involved, the contributions they made and the demands that made it necessary (or not, depending on your position). In fact his understanding of politics was at best rudimentary, around say what you might expect of a reasonably tuned in ten year old. Again he had voted for Johnson, but with minimal thought on the matter.

Now fair play, these people have every right to vote in a system of universal suffrage and their vote carries exactly the same weight as mine, as yours and as anyone elses. But it does illustrate one of the chief problems with democracy, identified as long ago as in ancient Greece, as to how to guard against the threat of populism in a largely politically illiterate voting populace. Put it simply like this; given the choice between a sweetshop proprietor who promises free sweets for all on demand, or a doctor who says "you will be given sweets, but only in moderation and to the extent that they are not harmful", which one are a group of children going to choose? Ultimately, in a system of universal suffrage with no safeguard to ensure that those voting actually understand the choice they are making, the populist candidate will always, sooner or later, come out on top. This opens the way for the unscrupulous to win to power, relying as it does on the integrity of the candidates to be honest about what they are offering (which of course they never are).

This is going to come across as self-centred arrogance on my part, but why should my vote, agonised over and thought about, options weighed and measured, count the same as my work mates, who know nothing, think nothing and hell, after putting their X in the box care nothing about what they have done to effect the future of the country we must all inhabit. And while this system operates, and we have politicians who exhibit all the trustworthiness of foxes in hen-houses, how in hell can we ever expect to get quality Government, to get Government in the interest of the people, ever, ever again?

You are going to think I'm a right whining prick about this, but I come across this level of political illiteracy on a daily basis and in huge numbers. I don't mind being beaten by the other side - seriously I don't - but Jesus, let me be beaten by people who understand that they are beating me, and why, and what for, and not just voting for more sweets!
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....and the glory of the world becomes less than it was....
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'Then let it end.'

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PostPosted: Sun Nov 01, 2020 8:19 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

A couple of years ago, out walking with my wife, I outlined the major threats which seemed to face humanity according to news reports in the media - think global warming, the arrival of a disease pandemic, the rising threat of nuclear conflagration, irrecoverable collapse of the global economy, massive shifting of populations northward creating instability and violent conflict. All of these predictions, I said, could not be wrong. Sooner or later (and most likely sooner) one of them was going to come to pass. (You can guess how much fun I am to walk with! Wink )

We now have the first of these predicted catastrophic events coming to pass. Alas, it will not be the last. All of the other candidates on that list are still absolutely there; they haven't gone away and the bad news is that the pandemic will start a domino effect that will bring the others around hard on the heels of the first. With the exception of global climate change (that is inexorably building to a tipping point that is now unavoidable anyway) the others are going to be hastened toward us as pandemic induced instability increases. Alas, the four horsemen are upon us my friends and the next few decades, hundreds of years will be the breaking or making of us. We are headed for the stone age (as a best case scenario) - the question being how much of what we now have can be preserved for an emergent nucleus of humanity that will hopefully come through the turbulence of the Catastrophies.

We are witnessing the beginning of the end for humanity as we have experienced it. What will replace the great urban civilization that will rapidly fall in the next few decades I can't say, but brace yourselves - we is in for a rough ride.
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PostPosted: Sun Nov 01, 2020 8:26 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

peter - democracy is the worst form of government, aside from all the others.

Churchill said it, but he was quoting an unknown source.
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PostPosted: Mon Nov 02, 2020 12:50 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Well, I can think of better systems, but none of them are sustainable in the long term and rely on things we can't guarantee, like suitable successors etc.

Peter, it's worse than that...not only are the majority of the electorate uninformed, but even if everybody was well informed, all that happens is you choose somebody to give your vote to, and then hope like hell he will run the country in a way you find acceptable.

And if he doesn't, then you give it to somebody else next time and hope the same. Wink

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PostPosted: Mon Nov 02, 2020 6:05 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

in America 🇺🇸 you are evil if you don't vote correctly, according to the donkies. So maybe you are a bot better off Peter?
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PostPosted: Wed Nov 04, 2020 6:36 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I am truly beginning to believe that you could achieve better results by randomly selecting six hundred people from the electorate every four years and doing away with the Party system altogether! Problem here is that you'd finish up with the civil service effectively running the country and simply playing lip-service to the selected individuals! I agree that democracy is the best of a bad lot - but boy does it have me tearing my hair out at times! Rolling Eyes

Now I know that the BBC is the State media outlet in the UK and must be expected to tow the party line on issues of the importance of Covid - but the overt massaging of the way they present the facts, such that the Government policy of the moment is apparently backed up by the data is truly astonishing (and very poorly done to anyone with an eye to boot). Last night on the main evening news - the '6' o clock slot - they presented a graphic of excess deaths (mainly attributable to Covid they said) by month over the course of the year. The large spike of April and May had fallen to near zero (in terms of excess deaths above the rolling five year average) following the worst period, but had shown a small upturn latterly as Covid infection rates have risen. The presenter then said "....and excess deaths are on the rise again", and as he said these words a new graphic was flashed to the screen where the absolutely minimal increase in excess deaths, compared to the earlier spike, that currently pertains was blown up into a visually large looking rise by a simple alteration of scale of the latter portion of the previous graphic, and cutting out the earlier months of the pandemic altogether. It was so smoothly done that only the most observant of viewers (including me of course Wink ) would have picked up that the current increase in excess deaths is not of nearly the same order as that experienced earlier in the pandemic.

Now I get that people have to be guided into acceptance of the very restrictive measures the Government has decided are best to deal with the pandemic, but I don't think that deliberate manipulation of the facts, or skewed presentation of the type described above, helps. If anything, to the likes of me who can see it for what it is, it makes me more suspicious, more resistant and less likely to comply with the regulations. This is not a black and white situation - the pathway through it is uncertain. Our media should be able to reflect this and explain why the given choice has been taken, not to duplicitously tinker with the presentation of the facts in order to hoodwink the people into swallowing that which they otherwise might question.
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PostPosted: Thu Nov 05, 2020 10:46 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

The presentation of almost all facts is inevitably skewed by the perception / intention of the presenter. Very Happy

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PostPosted: Tue Nov 10, 2020 7:40 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I've been reading the Max Hastings biography of Churchill's war years, Finest Years, and in it he recounts how in the dark days following the rescue of the BEF from Dunkirk, when Britain expected to wake almost daily to the arrival of an invasion by the massed forces of Hitler's Wiermacht, there existed an almost stunned gaiety in the country - an almost instinctive protective reaction akin to a rabbit washing itself in the headlights of the car rushing toward it.

One commentator at the time (it may have been Churchill himself, refering to an earlier writer) described it thus. The human mind, in processing troublesome circumstances, is akin to a three inch conduit expressing from a tank of drain water. It will carry a certain amount of water up to a given amount but no more. Increase above this amount will flow over and around the conduit, but not be registered by it, itself simply continuing to carry the three inches of water that it's maximum capacity will allow.

Being the natural pessimist that it is my cross to bear, I see parallels with the situation we face in the UK now, with those terrible times; the ongoing rampage of the Covid virus through our society, the implosion of our economy, the chaos and collapse that sits around the corner post transition end (deal or no deal), represent a collective existential threat to this country that, while not as visceral as 'the sound of jackboots on the stairs', is nevertheless as devastating in it's own way to the life that I/we have been accustomed to living, as that former threat was to the people of that day.

In the manner of the three inch conduit above or the rabbit in the headlights, I think the enormity of what we are undergoing, the period of compressed change that is about to be foist upon us, is simply too great for most people to comprehend - to mentally countenance or process. People do not get that there life as they knew it is over. That the ground has shifted under their feet in ways that brook no return to what they knew before, and that it will be many a long year before stability and certainly re-establishes itself into the fabric of society, the warp and weft of their lives. Those in power will of course realize this, but will say nothing to the effect - how could they, their own stupidity being instrumental in the bringing about of this situation and their carrying much of the responsibility for where we find ourselves.

The subconscious realization of the chaos flowing around the conduit explains to a degree the hyperbolic response in this morning's press in response to the news that Pfizer have announced success in the race to find an effective vaccine against the Covid causing virus. Jubilant flag waving and cries of gratification pour off the pages, with little note being given to the scientists desperately trying to keep people's hopes in perspective - that this is an early success in what will be a long and arduous challenge to provide a safe and effective product that will pass muster against the rigorous protocols of testing and licencing - and that success is by no means guarenteed for this or for any other vaccine. That our Governments, with their policies of lockdowns and restrictions are desperate to find a way out of the vicious cycle they have manoeuvred themselves into - a way which a successful vaccine offers - should not be forgotten; pressure's which might make them allow for shortcuts to be taken that would in different circumstances be untenable.

But there you have it. Not the happiest of posts I'm afraid and I apologize for this. These are difficult times and we will all respond to them in our own fashion. I am not formed of the kind of bouyant material that allows me to bounce to the surface of any troublesome waters and for this I ask your forgiveness. By all means shoot my pessimistic outlook down with the bullets of clear reason and optimism if you can; I for one will not mourn it's demise upon the grounds of more level headed thinking.
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PostPosted: Tue Nov 10, 2020 7:51 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Well, one thing is that it's simply not possible for a person to sustain any strong emotion, whether joy or despair, for prolonged periods. They're a function of the release of chemicals into your brain and bloodstream, and as such they have an effective life-span etc. Nor can the brain keep manufacturing those chemicals repeatedly without let-up.

Another of course is the inevitable fatigue that prolonged states of mind have both physically and psychologically, and of course, our ever so human tendency to not see that which we do not want to see.

--A
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