Ponty Mython

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  1. Ponty Mython

    Salisbury house price collapse confimed

    Despite being an estate agent, David McKillop is a decent bloke! As are most in Salisbury. PS no mad gainz here in Salisbury over the last 5 years, probably inflation plus a bit for a decent gaff. Still a bloody nice place to live.
  2. Ponty Mython

    Sensible lightweight motorbike suggestions

    Never, in the history of mankind, has a thing been invented that is simultaneously utterly uncool and utterly fucking brilliant as a motorcycle top-box.
  3. Ponty Mython

    Cars for the non-petrolheads

    In Australia, Toyota. The end.
  4. Ponty Mython

    Sensible lightweight motorbike suggestions

    Quite right, Tom. I have had both Arai and Shoei helmets, the latter never felt truly comfortable. Not as bad as Shark though, for those one really needs a long, thin head, like Carl Fogarty - one could even say rat-like...Whilst the likes of Arai and Shoei do spend a fortune on marketing, for which the customer ultimately pays, I have seen enough to be convinced that they are worth the premium. I don't know how it is possible to sell a decent helmet for 50 quid, which includes retailer mark-up and manufacturer profit. My Dainese boots are now almost 20 years old and still waterproof, as well as being suitably shaped for both track and road riding, even though the plastic shielding around the heels broke years ago. Best 100 quid I ever spent (they were half-price, from memory), I suspect I have been lucky. I once went for a job with Dainese, but they dicked me around, in true Italian style. DIdn't put me off their kit though.
  5. Ponty Mython

    Sensible lightweight motorbike suggestions

    A too small helmet will give you headaches and worse, not what you want when riding. Sizing is very brand-specific, best to try on loads to establish what brand of head you have. For kit, this is the business (though the exchange rate at present makes it painfully pricey); waterproof, warm when you need it, vented when you don't, well armoured and ridiculously practical. They also last forever: http://www.aerostich.com/men-s-roadcrafter-classic-one-piece-suit.html
  6. Ponty Mython

    Freshers Week and bewildered parents

    We have friends taking their offspring to an open day today. Back in our day, these were held during the week and were a legitimate excuse for a day off sixth form. Now it seems the open days are held on Saturdays, so that Mummy and Daddy can accompany their so-precious progeny. Similarly, parents are not allowing their kids to take the weekend and summer jobs that were entirely normal (and often quite lucrative) for us at 17. My precious, my arse.
  7. Ponty Mython

    The dud Kangaroo bounce thread

    Interesting counter-view, thanks - I can only say that you must move in far more enlightened circles than I once did!
  8. Ponty Mython

    The dud Kangaroo bounce thread

    50% off today's achievable prices and $3 : £1 would indeed be tempting. As a resource-backed currency, AUD is volatile, but I am not sure that GBP will ever grow the legs to get back to those heady levels. Even with property at 70% off in Sterling, as you state, there are still issues with Australian property - terrible build quality, general energy inefficiency and ever-shrinking plots. I do like the word "systemic", as used in the video posted earlier, certainly it describes beautifully the level of corruption in Australia; it flows through all tiers of government (certainly from state level downwards, doubtless the Feds are at it too), through all aspects of the financial services industry and into the provision of large private works contracts. Jokes about the country's convict past aside, this is all very much at odds with the commonly-held impression of the country. Australians possess a heady and dangerous mix of arrogance and ignorance (won't happen here, mate) and most are blissfully unaware of what is happening around them, what is about to jump out of the closet and make them shit their pants. The fact that 60 Minutes is giving such extensive air-time to the debt problem suggests that the Aussies are being softened up for the hammer blow; I suspect though that most will blithely ignore the warnings (won't happen to me, mate). I can't remember whether this has been posted on this site before, but enjoy this bad boy from Australia's largest bank:
  9. Ponty Mython

    The dud Kangaroo bounce thread

    I don't have figures to the penny, as the bragging stopped as the renovation costs soared, but here goes: Purchase price mid-2000s: $1.4m (good suburb, period property, in need of refreshing); I thought this was bubblicious at the time... Renovation (impractical loft conversion and small extension to rear): est. $750k - I can't see that the work would have cost more than £100k here in the UK. On another thread, the $50k fridge is mentioned; no fridge this time, but a light fitting was quoted at $8k, something which could be had for a few hundred quid here. Agent's recent valuation: $3m+ - in reality, I can't imagine anyone paying more than $2m today, which is still a mental amount of money for a 3 bedroom house. Joint salary has gone from $300k+ to $100k - and the shortfall is not coming back. Natch, there is also a BTL in the background ($1m for a boggo 2 bed flat). Until you spend a decent amount of time in Australia, it is difficult to comprehend the addiction to property, it is far worse than the UK. The weekend papers are at least 50% property (I think the big media companies own the equivalents of Rightmove, but can't be arsed to check) and chunky home sales routinely make the national evening news. Almost every home in any decent suburb has been extended and/or renovated to within an inch of its life (or within an inch of its neighbour, usually). Costs of both stuff and labour are eye-watering, no tradie will get out of bed for less than $100 an hour and the really skilled demand far more. Compound the brain-washing with incredible amounts of financial engineering (see MacQuarie for details), lax lending standards with liar loans absolutely the norm (pushed through brokers to keep the banks' hands clean) and daft tax concessions on BTL and you arrive in Australia. A country that, even 20 years ago, maintained its larrikin charm - no more. In that time, the population has increased from 20m to 25m. OK, it's a big place, but everyone moves to one of the principal 4 cities, making them increasingly unliveable. Melbourne, even now, often tops the list of most desirable cities, but the population has increased massively, the majority of new entrants coming from China, changing the underlying dynamic from European to Asian - this may or may not be a good thing, depending on your taste. If Australia didn't have shit in the ground to dig up and sell, it would be a banana republic. I believe that the country will continue to sell entry visas to Asians, pumping the population to keep the wheels spinning. It is far too expensive a place to make anything and long has been (eg car manufacturing all gone). In theory, a high wage economy can be beneficial to the majority; in reality, of course, those high wages get hoovered up by the credit providers. Despite being economically inactive here in the UK, I have turned down a lucrative offer in Australia (ironically, to work on building the infrastructure that the burgeoning population requires) as the juice is not worth the squeeze. The only place I would consider living now in the country is Hobart - and I haven't been there for years, so might well be disillusioned with today's Tasmania too. It is all such a shame.
  10. Ponty Mython

    The dud Kangaroo bounce thread

    I know of someone who was walked through the liar loan process by their mortgage advisor, it was clear that this was common practice, everyone was at it. Strangely, in this instance, it was not about borrowing more than could be supported by salary (salaries); after being surprised that the subject didn't want a 6x joint salary mortgage (due to fear of unaffordability, borne of an IQ greater than single digits), the advisor's attention attention turned to gaming the system to qualify (illegally) for the First Home Owner's Grant (free deposit from the government, plus stamp duty exemption) for an investment property (BTL). Ironically, if the subject had gone for the suggested 6x joint salary mortgage, they and their partner would have made, literally, millions (assuming they had had the nous to get out of the Sydney property market prior to 2018). I have close associates who are, on paper, millionaires a few times over but, in reality, are psychological wrecks, unable to cover their mortgages and "reno" costs (which are multiples of what any sane person would pay here in the UK). Australia's housing market is fucked x infinity. Don't even get me started on the arguments I have had with savvy property investors who are losing a fortune on negative rental yields, but are convinced she'll be right due to unrelenting capital appreciation. A nation of fuckwits. All that glisters is not gold.
  11. Ponty Mython

    how dead is your local

    Jesus. Both developer and copywriter deserve to be thrown in the river for that outrage. Am I mis-remembering, or did The Trout (as was) feature fairly regularly in the Morse TV series?
  12. Ponty Mython

    how dead is your local

    Edit: No idea how Rave's post on weightlifting got in here! They gutted The Trout?! It was, as you say, the very model of a perfect pub, at least it was last time I went, many years ago now. What were they thinking? Presumably The (W)Anchor? Popped in there occasionally as a relative nipper; last time I walked in with school friends (then in our 30s) for old times' sake we were looked at as if shit on a shoe, so walked out again. Tempting though it would have been, I didn't torch it. Salisbury has a high pub-to-population count, the surrounding villages seem to support pubs fairly well too. Spoons is always busy, mostly oldies during the day and stag and hen parties on weekend evenings, plus the usual Spoons piss-head collective. Not sure how the city supports so many places, I suppose the demographics are favourable (oldies with time and money and a thirst for booze). The Mill opposite Spoons was always good for a few afternoon pints in the sunshine, until it got Novichoked...
  13. Sorry, meant sell to rent, Friday night and all that.
  14. Yes, got the letter yesterday; lucky we are 100% offset...Currently looking to sell to let, bad moon rising...
  15. Ponty Mython

    Daimler AG

    PS Tom, I think you went into Yellow Cake at the outset? I planned to, but prevaricated and missed the boat; up over 20% in a short time - maybe you do have the touch?!