• neil

Day 68 (24 May): Pick up a Penguin

Have you ever noticed how many people around you seem to have got everything sorted out and buttoned down?

Have you ever wondered why you’re the only one whose life seems messy and without direction?

Do you feel, when looking at endless social media photos from exotic locations, that you have wasted a lot of time doing nothing very special while those around you were clocking up a list of meaningful and exciting experiences?

I expect that deep down nearly everybody feels like they are the lost on the periphery with no hope of accessing the magical inner circle.

Except me. That's where I live. Just yesterday evening I was saying to Margot Robbie during a game of online chess how very little I regret. The only thing which I could identify was my excessive sexual allure which has led to exhaustion more than once. COVID has provided a very welcome break.

But now that the rules are gradually being relaxed I’ve had to up my vitamins and my physical training regime to prepare for the inevitable onslaught. At age 64 you would think that my intense animal magnetism would be wearing off. Not a bit of it.

I have had to cut down on a few things. I only drink Krug in any quantity at the weekend and I find that a gradually increasing sense of vertigo has put me off competing in the Red Bull Air Races. All in all I am a little calmer and I prefer a weekend on my boat eating lobster and shooting the shit with the crew ( great bunch!) to womanising and doing lines of coke with my A-list buddies.

But hey ho! There’s worse.

And if your are in need of a laugh yourself, may I recommend inserting a different substance into your nostrils. Penguin poo.

Keen readers of this blog will have noticed that I have referred to penguins a total of ten times. The very keenest will recall that those references occurred on days 6,9,18,27,31,36,37 and 63. I am happy to make an 11th reference to our favourite bird today as I have learned from the online magazine 'Ars Technica' that penguin poo creates laughing gas.

Guano from king penguins in the sub-Antarctic gives rise to clouds of nitrous oxide—aka laughing gas—according to a recent study published in the journal Science of the Total Environment.

"After nosing about in guano for several hours, one goes completely cuckoo," lead author Bo Elberling noted in a statement. "It is truly intense."

The researchers found that areas with high penguin activity had a 120-fold spike in nitrous oxide over other areas. An amount of emissions which is about a hundredfold higher than that of a freshly fertilized Danish farm field according to Mr. Elberling.

I’m a tad worried about our Bo. What kind of person learns enough about this kind of thing to say, with any degree of certitude, where on the funny scale penguin butt emissions lie compared with agricultural real estate. And who is paying him? And is his wife sticking by him? And if she isn’t what is she doing next week? Margot will be away with the Rotherham Rep so I'm on my own.

In any event, perhaps we should keep this news to ourselves. If you are serious about the environment a gloomy face is de rigeur. I'm going to leave you now. It is Sunday afternoon, I'd like to go for a walk, and I can't do anything until I get this bird off my nose......

Hugs from the heart of things!...

and check this out



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