please empty your brain below

If relevant, please start your comment with a number from 1 to 29.

(questions will not be answered)
24. If you like being stumped, you could try the Royal Statistical Society christmas quiz
24. If I was doing the same crossword as you, 41 across was a 'setter'.

dg writes: How did I miss that? Thanks.
20. Surprisingly praised by a number of people who wouldn't normally watch 'reality' programmes, I was going to catch up with this in January. Seems I now needn't watch it to the end!
For me, 29th is "go to pharmacy for 4th COVID booster and flu jab".
2. Since when has DMR been a recognised abbreviation for December?
And why?
5/17/21: Royal Mail seem to be intent on destroying their letters business, and it's sad to see - I do wonder whether it would still have happened if they hadn't been sold off by the government.

20: spoilers?! (We're still only at episode 9)

25: The King's Speech will open the next session of Parliament, so I'd say you still haven't done that on Christmas Day. You may have watched his Christmas Message for the first time though.
10 - at least they lost to a team that reached the final, although the inability to score from open play is always a bit concerning.

17/21 - I think that the postal service is helping itself along the path to oblivion.
2. Freddie... since 1986, because.
18 The late, unlamented Angel Road would have been a contender for bleakest station.
28 I find the recent rise in popularity of axe-throwing pretty baffling as I can't see the attraction
8. 1925 Herne Hill feels an odd time and location to demolish a Georgian house. I wonder if it was for road widening.
27 - well done, for someone dog avoiding a GS is a major challenge.

It does help when they simply sit quietly beside you, maybe lean in gently at worst, and politely request (not demand) an ear scratch ...
Sat 10. I always suspected you were a Leeds fan!
17) I thought you got one on the 14th.
8. It looks like the southernmost wall of Dorchester Court on the far right of your photo - a fine example of a brick-built South London block of flats. It's on Herne Hill and seems to have fallen into disrepair in some parts more recently. I daresay you've blogged about it in the past at some point.
13. My local authority will let you look up stock of books on their website to see which branch a certain book calls home, and get it transferred to your preferred branch to take out.

Of course, by doing so it does eliminate the joy of finding a book you've been after for a while when dropping in to a different branch by chance!
5. The introduction of barcodes has had a lot of coverage. But I haven’t seen any information on what Royal Mail will do with letters posted after August with a non-barcoded stamp.
5. To show how powerful the Blue Peter appeals were, my mum & I still tear off stamps to send to Guide Dogs for the Blind!

9. My heating decides for itself when it's going to come on!

10. Yes!!

13. Tower Hamlets is part of the Consortium of London libraries (which also includes Luton!) so you could get books transferred to you from almost any branch in Greater London.

17. Missing quite a few of the usual cards this year.

20. Not a reality TV fan at all but The Traitors was an absolutely cracking series. Caught the final 5 minutes of the first episode and was so intrigued I went back to watch it from the beginning. Was immediately hooked.

25. Playing Newmarket is a Christmas tradition in my house! I'm surprised to find someone else who has heard of it!
Forgot to watch the King's Speech.

27. For the first time in my life I have 2 cats staying with me and no Christmas tree up! The two are only partially connected!

29-31. tbc
1. I've taken to writing the date on the low energy light bulb to see how long they last. Two weeks short of 10 years is the record on what has had to be replaced so far, but there's still some ordinary filament ones in place, so they've lasted longer still.
5 I used most of my small stamps decorating Christmas card envelopes to 2nd class value, the large denominations (£1.xx, £2.xx etc.) I still have left will probably be given to the Salvation Army to make use of.

The Post Office sell stamps for RM, RM should have paid them to swap the stamps. It would have been much simpler all round.

Bryn - The FAQ states that unbarcoded letters will be treated as insufficient postage (i.e. the old stamps are ignored) and will be subject to a rip-off surcharge fee:
"•no postage paid - £2.50 flat fee
•insufficient postage paid - £1.50 flat fee"

18. I’m old enough to remember when South Bermondsey station had not only a ticket office and a station masters office, but also a waiting room with a real coal fire, remember those? Walking up the long approach and seeing the chimney smoking away made you feel warmer already. Then, it was all removed, staff as well, and bleak was the order of the day, even in summer.
3. The important thing with post-its is to peel them horizontally so that they don't curl up and fall off.

6. Strawberry or lemon?

15. We also found this series a little flat and the Queen was oddly a bit-part character in her own show, failing to make the most of Imelda Staunton

20. People have had over a week to catch-up, if that worried about spoilers stop reading as soon as you see the title mentioned!
17: Received a late Christmas Card today, which was the first day I'd received post for over a week

18: That it's the station used by visiting fans to Millwall games makes its bleakness fitting.
13. "The user friendly online catalogue gives you details of all titles in stock in Tower Hamlets and our London Libraries Consortium partners. The catalogue tells you in which libraries and Idea Stores the titles are held, and whether they are currently available for you to borrow or reserve."
25. With this and Cornish Cockney's comment, I now have seem Newmarket mentioned by a grand total of two people outside my family. (Neither of you seem likely to be a member of my family behind your usernames.)
2. The other day I had to expense a day's travel in London, so I bought a paper travelcard for £14.40 (Z1-4) and I only used it for 4 trips within Zone 1. Still better value, but obviously I'd never do this normally.
11. MAFFDI, love it!
17 and 21.

Spoke to a neighbour delivering the Parish Magazine this morning. Like me no post for a fortnight (no Christmas cards, no credit card statements, no subscription magazines, nothing) although the Royal Mail did deign to deliver me 2 parcels in the period. So I rang the local sorting office: never mind the strikes we are short staffed and no I can't tell you when your road will next get a delivery. Come in between 8am and 10am, with your driving licence, and you can collect your post. My local posties are nice people but I have now lost all faith in them. They are idiots, committing commercial suicide and apparently well enough paid currently to afford to strike for 20 days.

5. Best to send in a small amount of stamps per time. If they get lost/stolen, you can then make a compensation claim for them.
17. Credit card statement delays are a particular worry if you use the statement as a prompt to pay (rather than having a whole bill DD set up). If the bill never turns up to remind you, next month you will get stung for additional charges and interest, as well as a marker on your credit file. (Ringing the credit card companies to find out my balance to pay was a pre-Xmas chore I didn't need.)

25. When you said you'd watched the King's Speech, I assumed you meant the 2010 film staring Colin Firth. Guess I haven't adjusted to the absence of the Queen yet.
2. I wonder how many unsuspecting tourists have paid the £6.30 London Underground cash fare for a very short journey, such as Covent Garden to Leicester Square? For a journey of one sixth of a mile, that works out at an eye-watering £37.80 per mile!
11. I recently paid a weekday afternoon visit to Battersea Power Station and, like you, found it be significantly busier than before (although not uncomfortably so). The opening of the new shopping and leisure 'destination' within the power station has certainly increased visitor numbers.
15. I would echo your comments about why it was so much more tedious than previous series. Having lived though it, there was nothing much to learn and, with the possible exceptions of Her Maj and Camilla, none of the main characters seemed remotely likeable.
25 - I listened to, and silently sang along to, Wombling Merry Xmas, simply because the chorus popped into my head for no particular reason, I couldn't remember how the verses went so I searched for and played it on a popular video website.

It's a cracker, but I expect that if it got the same amount of radio play as all the others, I'd loathe it as much as I do them. Whatever station my office colleagues prefer was STILL playing McCartney, Band Aid, Mariah etc. etc. today. Aargh!
12. Does the O2 arena set a limit on the maximum third dimension of an A4 sized bag? Two axes must not exceed 297x210mm, but must the third be less? Perhaps say a C4 envelope (324x229mm) would be ok as long is it was no more than 21cm thick?
24. Have you tried Liz Truss for the clueless answer?
I should perhaps have made the subtext of yesterday's post a little more obvious,

If you're one of the people who keep phrasing their comments as questions with really obvious answers, please don't, especially if that answer is no.
2. On the paper ticket - some people are also scared of having their card blocked when abroad so they don’t do contactless
Days which have not inspired comment:
4 14 16 19 22 23 26 29

(but the majority have, cheers!)

15: not looking forward to Netflix clamping down on password sharing next year!
29. That is braindead thinking from TfL. How can anyone think that’s a good policy.

3. There’s a Post-it saga going on down our street all month. One house has a Post-it by the doorbell asking the postman ‘please do not leave any packages with the neighbours’ but everyday when I pass by with the dog the Post-it has either disappeared or been replaced !
28: recommend electronic Crazy golf very much. Check out Puttshack.
30/31: forever a mystery
According to the FHRS, that new Shop at 6 High Street is called Sky Local. Makes sense, given it's local to the Sky View Tower. Though as of yesterday, it still has no external signage to that effect.
29. At least two people submitted an FoI request asking TfL for the deleted Crossrail Twitter archive. They were not successful.

I can confirm we do not hold the information you require.

At the point the Twitter account was deactivated TfL ceased to hold the information (and it ceased to be held on our behalf) as we no longer have any business need for it. Any information regarding services and changes to the Elizabeth line is now done via the main TfL social media accounts that cover all modes.

We do not hold an archive of the Crossrail Twitter account, or any other TfL Twitter accounts. Twitter is not considered TfL’s primary means of communication and is ephemeral in nature.

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