The Last Furlong

Comments on the race of life.



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Volcanic poo – dog

It’s frightfully cold. The dog doesn’t like snow, he doesn’t like rain either. In fact, he’s not a “garden dog” in any way.

Since we got him in October last, he has shown no interest in the garden. Our garden is just the place to do his business.

The now-dead-Bobby-dog, used to meditate outside, explore the fences, smell the flowers/grasses/plants. He liked the garden. In the summer he used to lie in the sun, snooze and enjoy being outside. Nothing happened there that he hadn’t checked out, or know about.

The new dog is a house dog. A lap dog. He sometimes only gets up at ten or eleven o’clock in the morning. That suits me, because I do too.

This morning he had to go out to do his morning ablutions in the freezing cold – minus 6 deg over snow. He was not pleased. Finally he did a racing poo that happened to land standing straight up in a cone shape. We watched from the kitchen window and laughed as it froze. And as it did, it sent off small clouds of steam like a tiny volcano!

And, yes, it can be used with the pile of poo emoji ...

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Kjellberg – who? Pew Die Pie, silly…

Felix Kjellberg , otherwise known as Pew Die Pie on YouTube runs a hugely successful business from it. He’s no stupid, though his videos, for my generation seem addled and superficial in the extreme; I can see why young people like him. He’s handsome. He’s got boyish charm, and plenty of charisma: a wonderful laugh, fantastic teeth and you can never tell what he’s going to do next!

He’s currently got eighty two million followers – eighty two million! with views of twenty billion – that’s billion.He’s been listed as one of the most influential people in the world. And he raises lots of money for charity…

Felix Arvid Ulf Kjellberg

Kjellberg at PAX 2015
Personal information
BornFelix Arvid Ulf Kjellberg
24 October 1989 (age 29)
ResidenceBrightonEnglandUnited Kingdom
Partner(s)Marzia Bisognin (2011–present; engaged)
YouTube information
Also known asPewdsPoodsPewdie[1]
Years active2010–present
GenreLet’s Playvlogcomedysatire
Subscribers82 million
(23 January 2019)
Total views20 billion
(23 January 2019)
NetworkNone (formerly Machinima and later Maker Studios)
Associated actsMarzia BisogninMrBeastJacksepticeyeMarkiplierCinnamonToastKenh3h3ProductionsEmma BlackeryPJ LiguoriJack DouglassiDubbbzGrandayyDolan DarkFlyingKitty
showPlay buttons
Subscriber and view counts updated as of 23 January 2019.

See what you think…



Mr Furlong has an excellent memory.

It astonishes me.

Not only does he assist me in my writing by finding words that have escaped into the woolyness of my brain, but he can spell, remember names of actors in movies, life situations, in the news, quizz questions and events of all kinds. He’s a sort of memory bank.

I’m somewhat worried about MY memory. I’ll be talking, describing a situation, or explaining, and I sort of hit a brick wall finding the word I need. Sometimes the word is quite simple, like “perculator” or “food processor” or “cable tie”. So our conversations sometimes turn out –

” Where is the, the, um, the thingy, um, the ……” at which point Mr Furlong infuriatingly helps me.

He says “Perculator?” “Coffee grinder?” “Knife?” “Pruning shears?”

And I say ” No, no. It’s the um, the, the….” while I search around for the name of the thing I can see quite clearly in my head.

Last night I made myself remember the names of three actors in the movie we watched. Matt Damon, Jack Nicholson, Leonardo de Caprio.

But, now, damn, what was the name of the movie?

As a young mother with five children, I used to forget their names too. So a family joke was to insert all the names of everyone and all our pets, dead or alive.

I’d call. “Come here, um, um,” and then insert the names before they did.

So it would turn out thusly.

“Come here Jason, Juno, Themba, Polly, Andrew, Veronica (etc) until I hit on the right name.

Mr Furlong never has that problem. He is my living, breathing, …..





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RIP my contacts

Today I awoke feeling quite dismal. I wondered who my friends were. It occurred to me that people who were once good friends many years ago in the “old” country had simply evapourated from my life. I decided it must be something wrong with me to push all these friends away. Was it my fault when old friends ignored my attempts to reconnect?

Was I unpleasant?

Was I strange?

Had they taken offence when we came “home” to the UK? Were they angry at us? Well I think a goodly few were. We deserted them. We also deserted two grownup and married Furlong children. I know that hurt. It still causes pain when I think of what we have missed.

Some unexpected friends still communicate, and, even, occasionally, came round for tea on trips to the UK. Or they phone me. Or e-mail and WhatsApp me. I must have meant something to them.

We have been in the UK for twenty years. I have made a few friends to whom I’m quite loyal. I have quite a few acquaintances. And, in business, we have met many many people.

So I went through my contacts list on my phone to find real friends.

For some reason the contacts list on my phone is full of contacts whose names and telephone numbers are meaningless to me. Who the hell are THEY? Why did I record their phone numbers? Haven’t a clue. Some have been imported from my email accounts – like all my students’ e-mail addresses, one off email addresses like Utilities enquiries, old business queries etc.

But I did find a disturbing trend in my contacts. The trend is observable with old friends and students.

Lots of them are dead. RIP my contacts. You were meaningful to me.


Sharing our dog’s bacteria

People who own dogs have an advantage in the happiness arena. Dogs can be used for healing, diagnosis, caring. I think dogs are wonderful!

But then I’m a dog lover.

Our dog Bass and us, now share bacteria too. Helpful bacteria.

Like humans, dogs have a distinctive microbiome across their body sites, with different bacteria present in the mouth, in the digestive system, and on the skin. Canine microbiomes are highly diverse, with the most diversity concentrated around their noses (think of your dog’s nuzzles as a microbiome boost).

Children living in houses with dogs have less asthma and allergies.The same applies to adults.

Dogs and humans’ gut bacteria are much closer than any other two animals and that’s probably because we have evolved together for so long.

You make sure to take good care of your dog’s health—but did you know that your dog’s microbiome could have a positive impact on your health, too?

There’s increasing evidence showing that bacteria from a dog’s microbiome may boost a human’s immune system.

Here is the link to the article I have quoted .

As I read about our connection with dogs I find that because we have such similar gut biomes, my diet should work on our dog Bass. He’s putting on weight on a cereal only eye wateringly expensive kibble. He’s  not a big eater, so it can’t be the quantity, it must be the carbs!

We are sharing all sorts of things. Love. Exercise. Training. Germs. I might as well share my diet too. Scrap the kibble! Maybe real meat and cucumber will do….


Constipation solutions

Thank God I never think of how much I go to the loo for a poo. My bowels have been good to me. But for some people, such a natural thing, is their daily nightmare.

It seems that eating right and exercise is the solution. Isn’t eating right and exercise the solution to everything? As I get older, I have come to realise that three things play the most important part of feeling well and being well.

Weight loss if you are overweight
Exercise if you are sedentary
Eating a considered mix of food

So for those who suffer constipation, here are some ideas that might work for you, remembering we only need to poo every three days and not every day like Granny said.

Lose weight so that exercising is easier and eat right.

  • Eat oats porridge with added nuts, raisins, fibre, figs, or prunes, flax seed etc for breakfast.

  • Up your intake of salads

  • Drink water

  • Drink caffeinated coffee

  • Cut the booze

  • Cut dairy

  • Reduce the protein

  • Walk around the house

  • Walk around the block

  • Walk around the neighbourhood

  • Walk to work or the shops

  • Put your feet up on something to raise your knees when on the loo

  • Don’t hurry

  • Avoid the stress of getting fixated on poo’ing

  • Avoid stress in general if you can

  • Nowadays, meditation  seems to be a cure all for just about everything. I wonder if it helps for constipation? When we had five children pounding around our house in the early days, there was nowhere for me to meditate. I used to sit on the loo with the door firmly locked. If someone called me I  used to shout “I’m on the loo!” People would leave me alone. I still think of being on the loo as a quiet time where I can just be me, alone. To meditate!

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Dog Tracker for Bass

Bass-the-now-being-trained-dog is improving daily in his training.

At last he is recalling well. Mmm, maybe not so well if he gets distracted by something other than me, like other dogs, rabbits, cats.

So, I know a place where I could let him off the lead. But what do I do if he simply ups and offs into the wild blue yonder? So I thought a tracker would help in such a situation. But seems they are mostly useless, even expensive ones.

The one that these Furlongs could afford has so many negative reviews, I hesitate about getting one at all!



Absolute rubbish!
I have a Jack Russell and this was my last attempt of letting him run the common without a lead, great in theory not in practice GPS kept kicking out and yet the actual GPS signal for that area is good. When I did get GPS it directed me one way and then another way, three and a half hours later I’m still walking the common being told he is 150 Meters away and then 480 Meters away it’s just ridiculous, absolute waste of money sorry as I had such high hopes, back to the rope and lead for this little Jack Russell.


I could buy this one for £999. It has no reviews! No wonder…

1234 D35 Waterproof GPS GSM Pet Tracker System For Cats Dogs FREE APP For Mobile Dog Cat Pets Tracer Anti Lost Collar Smart Finder(200)

It probably works and has no subscription charges. But £999? In your dreams!

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Frozen lake – meditation for today

A man films an amazing walk across the world’s deepest frozen lake, walking across Lake Baikal in Siberia.

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Fifteen to one (dogs)

I went for a walk yesterday along the canal path.

It was a Monday after lunch. Everyone should be at work

but they weren’t!

There were fourteen loose hounds racing around the canal path. Bass-the-new-dog-in-training, was on an extension lead. He is over friendly, so after sniffing eleven bottoms, faces and doggie networking, I wondered if we’d EVER get home.

We met ONE dog on a lead – a little super nervous Chihuahua on a short lead walking next to tense owners pushing a twin pram. Bass said a quick hello and then came away when I shouted “Leave”. “Leave” is the new command we are training in. Bass is getting quite good at it. It’s useful for rabbits, cats, other dogs and toys.

So after eleven sniffs and bums, I decided to rein him in as some women approached with three dogs running loose. I commanded “leave” and we walked away. The loose dogs, undisciplined ran after us. But Bass had been ordered to ignore them and, on a short lead, was behaving well. I turned and shouted “Shoo! Go away!”

The dog owner let rip that I should be socialising my dog! We had a spat – but she wasn’t listening.

So that was fourteen to one.

Just as we got onto the road home, Bass looked delighted to find a large Alsatian (loose) coming up behind us. I shouted “Leave” and the considerate owner recalled it. It was a beautifully trained dog, and they proceeded up the road with him tucked in to the owner’s knees.

So, that’s what I had on my half an hour walk that took an hour and twenty minutes.

(Well, I have to admit I spent some of it nattering to another dog owner who I’ve met before. She shared her dog tips….what else do you talk about on a dog walk?)

Dog walking cartoon stock illustration. Illustration of ...