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I've been meaning to sort out my study for months. Seriously, months and months. I decided to do it today because there was an accident on the motorway so I couldn't go to the garden centre and I didn't want to waste the keenness to do something. Anyhoo...

There are two large sets of shelves in my study, plus one cupboard, plus a couple of tall sets of shelves. From that description, you'd think my study is massive but it really isn't. There's enough room for me to get to the desk, sit down, and sometimes get things done. The problem is that all of these shelves and cupboards are full of stuff but I genuinely didn't know what that stuff was and I could never find things I needed (assuming I even remembered I owned them!). So what did I discover? Bearing in mind I've so far only done one big set of shelves and the cupboard, I'm doing pretty well:
  • 3 old laptops (which weigh a tonne) plus one netbook and one router
  • 3 old mobile phones
  • 2 palm pilots with accompanying gadgets and gidgets
  • A lorryload of cables and plugs
  • Two sets of speakers, three sets of earphones and two bluetooth earphones (which I don't think work)
  • Two big rechargeable torches whose plugs I've been searching for for years and still can't find - bin 'em
  • A bunch of multi-port USB ports
  • Two spare keyboards, various mouse mats and a brand new mouse (handy!)
  • Two portable CD players
  • Christmas, birthday, thank you and various other cards, plus wrapping paper
  • Pens, more pens and whole boatloads of other pens. Most don't work.
  • Post-its. About 20 decks.
  • Paper and photo paper for the printer
  • Ink cartridges for the printer
  • Various recovery CDs for various computers I don't use any more
  • A couple of spare backup drives I'd forgotten about completely
  • A lot of plastic boxes that are now empty of the crap I'd been hoarding in them
So I have divided the spoils into stuff I'm keeping due to security reasons (computers, phones, etc), stuff I'm recycling, stuff I'm chucking out, and stuff I actually need to use. I have 5 completely empty shelves so far.

And another bonus? I had been looking to buy a new set of shelves to go in the gym because I didn't have anywhere to put stuff. Turns out if you dump all the stuff you don't need any more and organise the stuff you do, you miraculously find space. Who knew?
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I posted a couple of weeks ago that I'd taken some videos at a gig I'd been to, and that I'd since created my own YouTube account at the urging of dear Ankh (who basically bugged me a lot) to post said videos. So far, so simple. So then:

1) I tweeted that I'd posted these videos. A few were of a Steve Carlson gig, and a few of a Christian Kane (and others) gig, both in pubs in London.
2) Other people saw the videos, and tweeted them.
3) A couple of days ago, I saw the hit count triple overnight, and I was a bit bemused. Turns out Christian Kane tweeted one of the videos
4) Then he posted on his Facebook
5) Then a country music station posted about how this video had 'recently surfaced. Er, no, nothing that laws-of-physics-defying - I just posted it on YouTube like any other person.

As of this evening, one particular video I posted has 4,636 views, over 300 comments on various sites, and who knows how many likes across the sites.

As I said, I'm a bit bemused. And I blame Ankh. This is not the world I live in.

Still, if anyone wants to see the video that's set all these people a-flutter, it's here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZUBly9Z-03Q
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Trigger warning: discussion of sexual abuse.

Read more... )

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Among the misery around the world, the BBC website today has an article with the following title:

Bond's sexual history: How does 007's sex life compare with a normal man's?

Er, well. I've seen the headline on and off as I've checked the site today (looking for news of the missing toddler - hideous situation). And I don't get it. I mean, I can only see one obvious comparison: an average man probably has as much sex with fictional characters as Bond does. Is that what they're aiming at? Because why a news organisation would think comparing fiction to reality is a good idea is just baffling.


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I've been thinking about changing cars for a while. When I saw a while, I mean a couple of years. I want something that's more comfortable for my back. All that means, really, is something that's high up off the road so it's a question of moving sideways to sit in the seat instead of down, plus is an automatic. Also, it needs to be petrol not diesel. Sure, there would be a set of other requirements, but let's get the basics on the table, find out what's out there and narrow things down from there.

So what are the choices? There aren't any, apparently. I looked at the reviews for what cars are worth buying and the only ones with auto run on diesel, which is a waste of my time since I'm not in sales and don't spend my life on the road. Petrol cars don't have auto these days, unless you spend vast sums of money.

So, that's the search over for a few years, I suppose. I have no idea why there aren't any autos out there, though. I mean, most people spend their lives driving around towns in this country, and the constant clutch-accelerator-clutch motion is at best annoying and at worst painful. I had such a simple set of requirements, I'm pretty astonished such things don't exist. Just... wow.

WTF?

May. 16th, 2012 10:44 pm
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So, I've been watching Fringe S2. Several episodes ago everyone discovered Charlie had been killed. This episode I'm watching, people seem to be confused by the girl who died and came back to life who has nuclear launch codes and is speaking Russian, but they're not confused by the dead guy wandering about the office?

Seriously, wtf?
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Yet another religious leader being a bigot. www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-politics-17249099  A Catholic cardinal saying that gay marriage would be a "grotesque subversion of a universally accepted human right". Seriously, dude? Marriage *isn't* a universally accepted human right, and that's the friggin' problem!

These people all seem interchangeable - there have been several reports of assholes speaking out like this over the last few weeks, and they're all high up in some religion or other. Create whatever rules you want to in your in-group, but leave the rest of the country out of it - we're in the 21st century, here, and don't need you imposing your obnoxiousness on us. I'm pretty disgusted as it is that it's taken this long to achieve this measure of equality, and who knows when we're going to get real equality in this country, but at least this would be another tiny step.

p.s. can't you just stick to the 'love your neighbour' part and the 'treat others nicely' part? I *like* those parts!

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In principle, email is really simple. Until, that is, you try to read it on or send it from a device that isn't a laptop. Sure, it should still be simple, but it's been a pain in the proverbial for me for months. I don't want to have to use a different email address. I *like* my email address. But due to Vodafone's faffing about with their email smtp servers I've now given up on them and am playing with google instead. My virgin email is coming to my phone through a convoluted path via gmail. Gmail have a setup where I can get my mail, send it to whatever device, and whoever I send mail to will be able to reply as if it came from my real email address. This is a good thing. At frigging last. But the amount of time you have to spend googling for answers for what should be really simple stuff is getting beyond a joke. I guess, at least we have search engines these days, so that's something.

What's odd, though, is that virgin's been faffing with their servers, too, and so the previously annoying thing where they automatically send me a copy of every mail I send (even though I'm not cc'ed on the mail) has turned out to be less annoying. Now, that random doubling up means that it also sends me the email I sent from my phone, just because it exists. Weird, but helpful, no need to cc myself to make sure I have a record on Outlook.
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I've been rewatching Fringe S1 because it was showing on Sky 1 this month. I (apparently naively) thought it would carry on into S2 and S3, but that doesn't look like it'll be the case. I tried watching Fringe when it was first out but it irritated me immensely, but this time around I'm liking it a lot better. So about the last third of the episodes of S1 has been new to me.

When I discovered S2 wasn't following on from S1 on Sky I went to Amazon assuming the DVDs would be nice and cheap. Yikes, was I wrong!

I guess it'll be a long wait to find out what happens next. Ah well, I have new Army Wives and White Collar and Leverage and Friday Night LIghts to keep me going for the moment (hurrah for cheap DVDs!) and I guess Sky will show the rest of Fringe eventually.  Why now, though, when I'd come to rely on these damn satellite channels and cable channels being overloaded with repeats of repeats of repeats, with any programme being shown multiple times over the years, and if they showed one series they'd just keep going once a day until all 95 years of it had been show, then start all over again.

Watched a couple of S2 eps of White Collar last night and it's getting quite exciting and angsty, so that's good telly. Army Wives is this overwhelming load of melodrama that's like the Hallmark version of Eastenders made in the US, and oddly good to watch while on the bike. Friday Night Lights kind of defies classification, but is compelling drama (if you can say such a thing about a bunch of teenagers who are fascinated by American football).
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Just saw an advert for a loanshark. An actual advert on the telly. Wasn't taking much notice, other than wondering where I put the remote so I could fast forward, and I happened to glance up to see... "APR 1737% representative". Yes, you read that right, almost two thousand percent interest. They talk about an emergency loan of £100 to get a washing machine fixed. So the person would have to pay the loan back within about 3 weeks if they only wanted to pay double what they'd borrowed.

I cannot believe that's legal. Seriously, is it? Is that what we've come to, what the shitty economy has brought us to? Seriously? Bugger me.

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Has anyone seen the film version of the Time Traveller's Wife? Is it as hideously paedophilic (is that a word? You get my point) as the book or is all that stuff removed? And even if it's removed, does just knowing it was all over the book make it just too icky to watch?
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Is there really a company called 'the phone company'? Because it comes up in so many programmes, and it sounds so very silly.

More wins

Jan. 12th, 2012 10:36 am
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Supernatural has apparently won more awards. Is it just me who finds it wholly amusing that these awards that allow internet voting are being loaded with SPN votes? Are there actually people out there who still don't understand the enthusiasm of fans? Heh.

The boys seem quite amused by it, too: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CHwjWzSb5rU
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I've been watching Bones. I think I've seen all of S2, most of S6 and some of S3 and 7 (don't ask me how Living are showing this). Thanks to the excellent primer I had (thanks, Rynogeny!) I can generally understand what's going on. And I like it. Considering I tend to really dislike shows that seem incapable of writing romance without turning people into ridiculous caricatures of what could have / had previously been multi-dimensional characters, I was pleased that this didn't go there. I mean, it goes there with romance, but not with turning women (in particular) into simpering appendages pining after random male 'hero' character who saves them from turning into old, unmarried, pitiable, pathetic excuses for human beings.

Good writing, then, thank FSM. It actually has the same kind of impact on me that NCIS does, where the characters are what keep me coming back and the plots are almost entirely incidental. Favourite episode so far is the one where Brennan and Hodgins are stuck in a car buried underground, and while that's about the only plot I can remember in any detail, it's also one that really had me hooked from the start. Most annoying character is Brennan's dad. I love that Brennan is a complete scientist and says what she thinks, and wish there were many more characters like her on telly and in film. I would be quite happy if there was no romance at all in this, but as it doesn't piss me off I'm not bothered.

I'm now quite intrigued to see how it all started. S1 doesn't appear to be coming on any time soon, but it'll get here eventually. I'm sure I saw at least a couple of early episodes, which didn't draw me in, but I expect I'll have a lot more patience for them now.
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Apparently the US telly industry makes a shedload of pilots that don't get shown. Here's one of them: http://io9.com/5872010/watch-ron-moores-fantasy-cop-show-17th-precinct-and-see-what-we-missed-out-on (the full pilot episode, though not final polish). I just watched the whole thing and was intrigued, impressed and want to see more. Unfortunately, there is not and never will be more.

Premise: "the show about cops who use magic discs instead of guns, spells instead of forensics, and plants instead of electricity".

I really do wonder, sometimes, what it is these people use to make their decisions, as it doesn't appear that they're using their brains.
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I've been doing things that aren't posting to blogs of late. This isn't a great surprise to me, mostly because my focus has been quite inward and not outward, and not even inward in an outward kind of way. But I think I'm moving back into the real world, looking at things I have to do (sort out financey stuff, sort out housey stuff) and taking some notice of what's happening out there. Not that any of it's profound or essential to the continuation of the species, but it's little steps that are worthwhile to me.

Anyhoo, my conclusions about the year that's just gone are forming, and the first one is that I've bought two pieces of tech that have been really, really worth it. The first was my Samsung tablet, which was exactly what I needed, when I needed it, and has continued to be extremely useful. And the second (more surprising) was my xbox with kinect, because it surprised me with what it could do (not just help me jump around like an idiot), and I'm absolutely going to make the most of the jumping aroundness of it and also the media centre functionality of it when it's installed in its new home in the newly converted garage (which itself will only be a few more weeks in the making). Tech is fun.

I have more conclusions, but musing will continue.

HP7, part 2

Aug. 7th, 2011 07:43 pm
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Saw the last HP film this afternoon and it was very good. It was the first one that actually seemed to hang together as a story instead of a set of scenes one after the other. The books didn't have that quality, so I do wonder if it was deliberate on behalf of the filmmakers. The music was wonderful, orchestral, its own character, so I've ordered the CD.

I know they needed to leave a lot out of the story, even having turned it into two films, but there was a lot left that seemed significant, not least all of the Dumbledore backstory. If I hadn't read the books, I'd have been a bit bewildered by some of it, though, and certainly wouldn't have seen the significance of a lot of the small moments.

Am now giving The Watchmen a shot (it was on last night? the night before?) and about 30 minutes in I can say that Rorschach suffers from a serious case of purple prose and I have no idea what's going on. Although, huh, naked blue dude. Yeah, no, this is really dull.
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So, LJ has been a pain for a while, so I've now got this DW account. The same username in both places, just to keep it easy. And I'll be crossposting, simply because that's all much easier than trying to do things twice. Assuming it works...

I now have to hunt down everyone here on DW and create a friends list (is it called something different here?). Must read the instructions!
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I'm watching one of the vast swathe of home makeover shows, and I'm always mystified by this idea that things are "in" or "out" for decorating in the same way they are for clothes (and, for this particular post, let's not get me started on my fashion rant).

I have a house. I decorate my house because I like the paint or the floor or the cushions or the curtains. It never even crossed my mind to think "ohh, I wonder if I'm keeping up with current decorating trends?" - why would it? How many people will be coming to my house who will have a clue what's trendy? How many people who have a clue will give a shit?

Plus, what is the purpose of having trends in decorating? How many people repaint their walls every year, recover their sofas, update their curtains, etc, to keep up with whatever the mysterious 'they' is dictating is now "the look"? Who has the money? Who has the time?

Am I alone, here? It just seems to be mystifying.
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Today I gave in and changed the temperature setting on my phone's weather app to Farenheit. Since summer has come back it's now officially too warm for me to be able to relate to Celcius. It's currently 10:30 pm and the weather tells me it's still 72 outside - lovely night's sleep coming up, then. Tomorrow it's claiming it'll go up to 82. This is definitely summer. I vaguely recognise it.

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