Sunday, September 30, 2007

Ich bin ein blogger.

My computer is about to expire. It's (of course) running Windows (XP) and has been running on this current installation since 17th July 2005. It no longer wants to "play ball".

Flicking between windows now causes some kind of rip in the continuum of time and space, where you can lose up to three days of your life. My computer is old and tired, but it's the bloody Windows that's dragging it down.

I can not remember the last time I had a single installation of Windows that lasted this long.

Now begins the tedious exercise of trying to ascertain what data needs to be backed up before I completely trash the thing and start again.

It's not just the MP3s or the Word documents that trouble me. It's not the years of amusing "adult" material that bothers me. Years and years of photographs can all be backed up as a bunch of JPG files. The things that really cause concern are bits of websites I have developed and little text documents, the mountains of application data (config files and data). There's no easy way to catch all this weird objects in a backup routine that isn't a full system backup, and I would never want to restore it all.

It truly takes years to make everything do what you want it to do, then Windows is so far up its own pipe that it can't possibly do any of it any more!!

There's no easy answer - I usually just buy another disk and put a clean install onto it leaving the old disks as slaves.......

I don't think I have space for another disk.....

Something's got to give!!

Couple with the fact that Blogger has done that weird thing again where it's defaulted into German!! In order to post my blog and then read it I have to Blog anzeigen (in einem neuen Fenster).

Friday, September 28, 2007

Smoking.

Well, it's been some time now since I quit smoking. About six months in fact!!

I can now see what a great move it was to quit, and how silly I was to not quit before. I guess the old adage is true, that you need to want to quit before you really will.

So, now my mum's quit too!! She's smoked for 50 years.... yes, five-zero!! She hasn't had a cig for two weeks now, and we'd both appreciate it if you'd raise a glass or put your hands together in appreciation of that!!

I just wanted (for my own benefit really) to go through my numbers again just to reinforce the difference it's made to me.

Since I quit:
I have not smoked: 7680 cigarettes.
I have been cig free for: 192 days.
I have not spent: £2016 (4088 USD; 4085 CAD; 26547 SEK)

Most importantly.....
I have not ingested: 61.44 Grams of tar into my lungs.
I have not inhaled: 61.44 Grams of carbon monoxide.

And for you delight, here are some items that weighs the same as that amount of tar or the amount of carbon monoxide that I have saved myself from.










Ok, strictly speaking, she doesn't weigh in at 62 Grams, but I would never have been able to catch her before without running out of breath!!

Thursday, September 27, 2007

Maths lesson.

Jane has 25 million apples.

Jane buys each apple for £0.85.
Jane sells each apple for £1.40.

Jane's profit per apple is: __________ (a)

Jane sells all 25 million apples and makes a total profit of: __________ (b)

The farmer where Jane bought the apples has admitted that the apples he sold Jane were really oranges.

Jane admits to having sold her oranges telling everyone they would be getting apples, and under investigation it is revealed that the oranges have knowingly been sold at a profit, despite the fact that they were misrepresented. Jane is in a lot of trouble.

The newspapers tell the customers that they have bought oranges and not apples. Nobody wants to buy any more apples from Jane now.

So, Jane is taken to court by the Farmer's Union, and is ordered to pay some money back.

How much money should Jane be made to pay?

(i) £1.40 X 25 million = £35,000,000 [ ]
(ii) £0.55 X 25 million = £13,750,000 [ ]
(iii) Oh, let's say £2,000,000 as a guess [ ]

So were you right?

Jane illegally took £35,000,000 of money for apples when she knew they were oranges.
Jane illegally took £13,750,000 profit.

Jane claimed that, because she couldn't sell any more apples or oranges because the newspapers had been nasty about her, that she had really LOST £13,500,000.

Jane put £2,500,000 into a prize fund and entered the 25 million customers to win some of their money back. I know you've been cheated so here is a chance to win your money back!! In fact they have a chance of winning back about 7% of the total money.

Jane paid £2,000,000 to the Farmer's Union.

Jane is now on a tropical beach, retired, with the remaining £9,250,000.

Unbelievable?

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Badges.

It's Pogo badge day today, and following on from their launch of the UK founders club, yesterday, we are now eligible to spend much more money with their website and of course buy even more badges. Hooray. I won't be buying badges, or at least that's my current standpoint. Following the founders club launch, we were all given some free "gems" which you can exchange for various virtual items. I swapped mine for badges because I couldn't wait until this afternoon for the weekly challenge badges.

So, I am all badged out.... Normally on a Wednesday we are offered just two weekly challenge badges, and we have a week to complete them. I think I have completed no less than seven badges!! It truly is a sign of a misspent middle age!!

I DID, on the other hand, manage to help Polgara out with a troubling spreadsheet problem, which I am happy to say, both stretched my mind, and taught me something useful about array formulae..... I mean, c'mon, what kind of afterthought is it in a software package when, in order to input a certain kind of formula, you have to press ctrl-shift-enter to put it into a cell?? Bonkers, and I am kicking myself for not guessing the secret code earlier!! It's a good formula though.... look:

{=SUM(IF($K$2:$K$65536=V8,$J$2:$J$65536))}

I am pleased with solving that!! Note the curly brackets, which is what happens with the ctrl-shift-enter secret code!!

Other than that, it's been a day of mindless nonsense. Reading blogs, writing a blog, playing Pogo, crashing my computer (I have this weird USB related issue that is driving me up the wall and all the way across the ceiling!!), playing about 5 minutes of Sims2 before it drove me up the wall and back across the ceiling the way I came when my USB problem reared its ugly head, again!

Full moon..... Everyone run outside and have a little howl!!

Ow-Oooooow!!!!!

Like the werewolves, I gotta go get changed!!

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Thanks.

I'd like to extend a warm "thank you" to birthday well wishers the world over. It was lovely to receive so many texts, emails, birthday cards, gifts, comments, and facebook wall scrawls. You've all contributed, in no small way, to what can only be described as an enjoyable and memorable birthday.

Last night Dawn took me to Loch Fyne, a fish and seafood restaurant in Leeds. I have wanted to go there for quite some time, and we had a most enjoyable evening, even if I did get rather drunk by the time we got home. A fair meal, a little on the pricey side, with a few niggling faults, backed up by sparkling company of course made the whole experience well worthwhile. Halibut, potted shrimp and a cheese board.

Today I've been relaxing, or "chillaxing" as the kids on the street might say. I've been reading a bit more of the Ben Elton book that I started and drinking lots of coffee. Then, somehow, something happened, and I am still not sure what, but..... I think Dawn must have slipped some Rohypnol (spelling?) into my baked potato.....

I got suckered into going to frigging Ikea!!

It's the worst shop EVER!

I was going to take some random shopping photos, but the whole frikking shop is so disorganised that I would have run out of space on the two jiggy-byte card in my phone. I think I need to award Ikea some sort of "global" random shopping status. No photos required.

A land where products are called "Mokkjokk" or "Tittas" or "Okkenslokkenknockken" is not really a place I am comfortable in.

I am looking forward to the Oktoberfest at the Irish Centre in Huddersfield next week. I have promised to take Fred along on the Friday afternoon. If anyone would like to meet me there for a jar or two of some fine Marsden or Golcar brewed beers, then please let me know and I promise to not be too pissed to achieve this.

Anyone wishing to take part in the Huddersfield Halloween Zombie Slouch on Saturday 27th October, can see the details here. Click the image for a bigger version. Not sure whether to go as a zombie or to just capture it photographically. It's for a right good cause though and I reckon it'll be a screeeeeeeam.

Monday, September 24, 2007

Hey FoXy...

... It's your birthday.

Happy birthday to me.

I am not about to write very much today. I am, instead, going to allow other things to commemorate my day.

1) Bowling cam highlights has been updated for your pleasure.

2) My Flickr album continues to grow in enormity, even though it is still never viewed by anyone other than me.

3) Random Shopping blog has been updated.

4) The Simpsons has always been interlaced with great references. Here are some of them.

5) Blogger play - A place where you can watch a seemingly random array of photographs that are being uploaded into Blogger. The nice thing is that you can go back to any that you might want, click on it, and be magically transported to the blog that contains it. Very addictive.

6) An intriguing collection of photography.

7) Mmmmm erotic cakes.

8) After eating your erotic cakes, how about wanking your way to world peace?

9) Following a weekend of walking, I think it's only fair to give this product a plug. I am sure women walkers the world over would benefit from it.

10) Don't forget that I have updated and archived my polling booth - it's now a more standard "Blogger poll" but make sure you vote. You've got to be in it to win it!! It's over there on the right hand side.... you know the drill!!

Sunday, September 23, 2007

I could....

... go on, and on, and on about my weekend walk in Keswick. I won't. Here are a few pictures to whet your appetite. Hopefully, one day, you'll get to experience for yourselves, the feeling of joy that came to me atop Catbells.

The weather was harsh. Friday it was absolutely pissing down with rain. Saturday, a window of unbroken sunshine (during which time we managed the walk). Sunday pissing down rain again. The Lake District is of course, so called, because of the copious quantities of water contained therein. We mustn't grumble.


Driving to Keswick. Treacherous conditions. Friday and it was raining all the way on the three hour journey to the wettest part of the world. It didn't look like we were going to get much walking done.


Saturday morning. The sun came out and dried up all the rain with the exception of the really big puddles. Oh, wait, those are THE lakes!! Walking from Keswick towards Catbells. Roughly three miles or so along a gently undulating woodland approach to the foot of this hill.


Catbells begins to loom. This moody photo of Catbells begins to show that this little "family" hill might not be quite so innocuous as first imagined. The hill is made up of two peaks, the first of which is in the foreground, and the second, higher peak is just behind, visible to the left.


A proud moment. I was unsure as to whether anyone might consider the prospect of lugging up a hill with me to be remotely enjoyable or rewarding. I think at first sight of it, Dawn felt the same!! I think we were both surprised at how rewarding it really was. The views were astonishing. Looking in the distance to Skiddaw on the left; Blencathra on the right; Keswick and Dawn in the middle.


Back at the bottom. A delightful cheesy self-timered moment. There are VERY few photographs of Dawn and myself together. I set the timer on a bench which was dedicated to a chap from Coventry.... apparently "He spent the happiest hours of his life in these hills". I think a few of ours may be too.

I know that all the photographs that could possibly be taken have been taken, and have been done so on much better equipment than I had at my disposal. They have been taken in better conditions, with better lighting, and no doubt with better exposures and shutter priorities than my photographs. If you want to go and see more, then look here. These are MY photographs, and they are a memory of a walk up a hill.

A birthday celebration in advance of my thirty ninth year, and one which I am privileged to have shared with Dawn. Thanks darling.

Friday, September 21, 2007

Closed.

Sorry, this blog is closed for the weekend.

I am away to the lakes on a weekend of walking, if the weather holds up.

Enjoy yourselves, and don't wreck the place while I am gone.

Play nicely!!

FoX

PS: Rol, if you get a chance to drink a pint of the Riverhead's Deer Hill Porter, it's delicious!!

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Implosion.

I am writing this, yesterday. Today I am going to the dentist (which of course is tomorrow), and then I think I am going out in the afternoon, so I probably won't get the required time to devote to the following blog entry.

In advance of today, I give you tomorrow's blog entry, yesterday.

It's all about the searches (AGAIN) - Sorry.

* crown green bowling (Google)
* bowling cam (Google)

Of course, you've come to the right place. My bedroom overlooks the crown green bowling green of Outlane Bowling Club. You can see the zen-like action here! Also, you may wish to view the amazing highlights section, here. I am THRILLED that someone found me by searching for "bowling cam". I hope they were not disappointed.

* pictures of an artic fox (drawed and phtographs) (Google)
* were does a arctic fox live (Google)
* arctic foxs (Google)
* artic fox (Google)
* arctic compared to dessert foxes (Google)

I don't like to pick fault with people's spelling and grammar, and you knew there was a huge BUT to follow that sentence didn't you? But, the above examples both amuse and frustrate me equally.
a) "drawed and phtographs" I need not comment. They even spelled it "artic" to add insult to my injury. Very salty wounds.
b) It's "where" not "were" and "an" not "a", but thanks for spelling "arctic" correctly. An arctic fox (not "a arctic fox") lives in the Arctic. The clue is in the question.
c) Plural of fox is foxes. Pertaining to a fox is fox's. You're in no-mans-land with "foxs"!! I am becoming more and more pedantic as I get older!! I also appreciate that it makes no difference to a search engine, but what kind of example is that to set?
d) It's arCtic not artic!! "Artic fox" is still the most common search term that brings people flailing through my portal.
e) Never eat dessert foxes, they are extremely rare!

* noodle doodle mouses (Google)
* noodle doodle came to town (Google)
* Download If I had words to make a day for you (Google)
* an ant riding round on a golf ball songs lyrics (sing book 2005)(ant) (Google)

Lyrics that people look for. I am VERY pleased that my seemingly random rendition of the noodle doodle song has yielded visitors. The lyrics to "If I had words to make a day for you" are actually from a song called "If I had words" - Adapted from "Symphony No. 3" by Camille Saint-Saens (as featured in the film Babe) see: Lyrics or video. As for an "ant riding round on a golf ball", I am guessing you mean this?

* How Heaney portrays nature in his poem Blackberry picking (Google)
* "oh mother come and meet me now" (Google)

I am pleased that people come to my blog in search of information about poetry. My recent excursion to Black Moss Reservoir was of course poetry inspired. I was thinking about Seamus Heaney whilst picking blackberries at the weekend. The other poem was one I searched for forever, and was eventually rewarded.... you can read about it here - It's called "Skyman", and someone wrote about it in the comments for the blog entry.

* "shit on glass" (Google)

I sincerely hope you were looking for the Andy Goldsworthy "Cow shit on glass" exhibit and not some sort of dirty process!! Suffice to say, I give you the former, here: The latter, I cannot help you with.

* Wainwrights Castle Cragg (Google)
* google earth catbells (Google)

I shall be walking both of these hills, this coming weekend, in anticipation of my forthcoming birthday. I did give links to the Google Earth downloads for these files before, but here they are again.

* what do baby goldfinches look like? (Google)

Unfortunately, although I have them in my garden, the pictures I tried to take are not very good. If I can find one that seems remotely bearable, I'll put it here to look at. Well, here you go, it's the best I can provide of my own shots.


* baby arctic foxes for sale (Google)
* pet arctic fox for sale (Google)

Arctic Foxes, like any wild animal, DO NOT make good pets. Do not attempt to own one!! Stop looking here to see if you can own me too!!

* slutsuzie blackpool (Google)
* slut suzie blackpool (Google)

I think Suzie disappeared some time ago now. I am amazed that I still, regularly, get a good number of people who come here looking for her because I once wrote about her. She was a prostitute in Blackpool, and I believe she specialised in attending to disabled clients and the older gentleman. I could be wrong, it was a long time ago.

* "No time off for good behaviour" "movie quote" (Google)

This is interesting. I don't know why someone would come to my page looking for movie quotes, but I always like to give something back. Here's my thing. That's your quote searched for right there!! Of course, if the answer isn't actually in that list, then perhaps it aint that much of a big thing, but the IMDB quote search engine isn't bad. A freebie from me to you.

I live to give!!

PS: Post update post update: Don't forget me hearties!!

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Stuff....

.... and nonsense.

I've been busy doing "background" tasks.

These tasks are essential to my "online" existence and take up a great deal of time. Not many people notice that I have done them or even care, but I know things are tidier, neater, more organised, and much happier - In complete contrast to my "real" life!!

So, for a few examples:

Flickr - I have been adding, subtracting, tagging, geotagging, dating, uploading, and generally making my whole collection there as comprehensive as possible. New sets for Yorkshire Sculpture Park and Black Moss walk. Lots of new "phone camera" pics too.

Random Shopping - I am trying to make sure that my "Random Shopping" blog doesn't die on its arse. It's hard enough to keep one blog going (as I am sure you lazy non-updating-buggers will agree) but to keep two on the go, and make them remotely interesting is a task of some size. In order that I DO keep Random Shopping open, I have diversified into the world of discarded shopping lists.

Reading - I now subscribe to forty-four blogs in my snazzy Google blog reader. I need to subscribe to so many, so that at least someone will give me something to read each day!! Consider yourselves "roasted" for inactivity, AGAIN!

In an "offline" context I've also been quite busy:

Reading: Having recently finished another Lynsay Sands historical - The Switch, I've moved on to: Ben Elton - Stark (in the bedroom) and Robert Sabbag - Snowblind (in the reading room!).

Watching: I don't get much time to watch a lot of television at the moment. I love the 4OD and BBC iPlayer, because they allow me to download the television I missed and watch it at my leisure. I am loving CH4's Dogface, and have been watching ITV's Hell's Kitchen (which has of course (for me at least) been dreadful and compulsive).

Playing: Sims 2 with my left hand and Pogo with my right.

Picking: Blackberries. Nature's bounty is exploding around us. We managed to harvest ten pounds of blackberries on Saturday morning. Nettle stings, and ripping of thorns. The blackberry plant seems so ancient and unsophisticated, yields its fruit so easily, and you can't help but feel the primeval surge, knowing it has always been this way. Low effort in, maximum reward. Survival.

Anything else?:

Getting depressed at the quality of these photographs.

Finding this link for my tap-playing cousin.

Drinking "real ale" at the Three Pigeons (an art deco pub) in Halifax.

Eating curry at Zam Zams in Elland - Bloody gorgeous!!

Sunday, September 16, 2007

I skimmed flat stones.....

.... Across the remnant of the infamous Black Moss.

The day was not still, and I couldn't hear the ripples for the howling wind and whip cracking rifle fire from the nearby Diggle shooting ranges.

Still, I CAN say I was there. I CAN say the reservoir was about ninety percent empty. I can say that the place is surrounded by heavy machinery and building materials. I CAN say this work has been going on for a year and is set to run for at least another two years. I CAN say that before lunchtime today I was out on the hills, on the Pennine Way searching for the water that wasn't there.

It was a bit disappointing, but it was still frikking awesome to be out in the middle of nowhere with some crazy ambience.

Here's a few photos to commemorate the madness of Black Moss.

Dedicated to Yorkshire Pudding and Gonzo bloggers everywhere.


Which way? The Pennine Way of course!


Didn't look like this in the brochure, did it?


Oh well it's a lovely beach.


For beach, read desert.


For desert, read moonscape.


I can see the sea. Do I win?


Come on let's go look.


You can look, but I'm off home.

Friday, September 14, 2007

Reefer madness.

I would like to think that over the course of many years I have at least learned something about drugs. Not all the lessons were positive ones. Nevertheless, they were lessons, and each one was as valuable as the last.

I was always fascinated by the lengths that some people would go to in order to satisfy their curiosity with drugs. The "spider experiments" of the sixties were a classic example. Give a spider LSD and I can tell you it's gonna spin a mighty fugged up web!! Do you really need to go to these lengths?


Tripping on mescaline.


Spider on hashish.


Wizzed on acid.


Spider laced with caffeine.

Anyhoo.....

Perhaps you might like to see this short film, which shows how the experiments were conducted. Make sure you stop the tune that's playing in the background first with the media player thing over there at the top on the right hand side otherwise the sounds are all fugged up.


Effects Of Drugs And Alcohol On Spider Webs

Thursday, September 13, 2007

Pissed....

.... on my bonfire!!

Thanks Stan, for ruining my perfect evening's blogging.

I read with disgruntlement, that some people like to blog about such inane minutiae, including what they have for breakfast.....

.... just a few seconds before I was about to blog what I had for tea (or should that be dinner? - At 5:30pm I think it's fair to call that tea).

Arse biscuits.

No, that's not what I had for tea, but what went through my mind having read Stan's blog, after my tea.

Roast haddock, minted pea puree, asparagus, and baby new potatoes. Baked apple with vanilla ice cream.

That's what I had for tea. If I might also add it was bloody delicious. If I might further add, it was all cooked by me. If I might even further add, twenty minutes prep, twenty minutes cooking (forty minutes cooking the apples, but they are still going while you eat so it don't count). It doesn't get much better.

I love cooking when it's something so tasty and effortless.

In other news, it's about time I responded to some feedback.

Feedback attack:

Rol: If I am up in time, then I may well go and volunteer for footpath duty. The only problem I have is that I use the "footpath" for my mountain bike and the purists might set their dogs on me!!

BlueSkiMonkey: The sponsored bike ride sounds good, but I do not agree with those silly sponsored events where the sponsorship money is used to send me on the fundraising event.... you know like all them bastards that go walking the great wall of china, and your sponsorship money is buying them a free holiday when they could have walked from Huddersfield to Scarborough and hitchhiked back and the money would have actually done some good.

Anonymous: You gotta be kidding me... it's you isn't it Clemmy?!? Magic Facebook my arse!!

Spice: The idea of spending money on a new camera when I have no income to speak of seems a trifle decadent, would you not agree?

Spice: No sheep?? How about hundewolle you crazy Canuck?

Yorkshire Pud: On your behalf, on Sunday, I went in search of Simon Armitage's Black Moss, only to be beaten back by the fact that I had just had lunch, was wearing jeans, a tshirt and trainers, and it's kind of out on the moors a bit and it looked like rain..... I made it as far as Diggle Reservoir before deciding my attire was unsuitable to continue. I will endeavour to try harder next time for you.

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Hillyness.

Wednesday morning. The suspense is too much for me. I can't wait until this afternoon for Pogo to release this week's challenge badges!!

I go out and buy a new bottle cage and water bottle for my bike. A shop I don't use much but he's a friendly chap and we have a chat about "monkey - Journey to the West" because he has recognised my t-shirt. I fix the new cage, fill up both bottles with some "corporation pop" and set off.

Twenty four miles later and I am struggling to make the twenty three steps back to my bedroom to write a blog about it, even if I get off the bike first!!

Here's some lovely accompanying photographs.

In other news:

You all think you're so bloody funny don't you!!

I have a tooth that's started to crumble and I can't get to see a dentist for a week.... brilliant!!

The salt from my sweat has burnt my face to shreds.

I need a snooze.

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Flatness.

What is happening to blogging?

I started to use a new "blogreader" yesterday, as I think I have possibly reached the limits of what I can do with Bloglines. I was surprised to find that, sometime ago, I had signed up for, but never utilised, Google Reader.

On first impressions, I am satisfied with Google Reader. It does what I need to do, and it's also a little more reliable and stable than Bloglines. I think as a beginner in the world of "feeds" and "RSS" and all that nonsense, I'd prefer something that actually managed what I wanted to do now, rather than a product that I will never ever "grow into".

So... Google Reader, full steam ahead. All my favourite blogs are eventually subscribed to. Two blogs initially gave me problems, one I managed to resolve, but the other: It's about the vodka, I can't fathom out at all. The latest post I see is February 5th or something silly. Grrrr.

I sit back and wait for one of my twenty three subscriptions to update, and for something to happen. I wait... And I wait... I go to bed... I get up... I wait some more... I ride my bike... I cut my lawn... I cut my neighbour's lawn*... I wait some more...

Not one single person has updated their blog in all that time....

I am either the blogger with the least amount of life or desperately in need of some new blogging pals!! It is hardly any wonder that I only manage to get a paltry three or four comments a day, despite the fact that an average of twenty seven people visit me EVERY DAY!! Oh, this is turning into one of those "lurker" rants, where I expose my sensitive underbelly, and beg for more proof that you were here. I'm so unloved, you're all wolves!!

Anyhoo, moving swiftly on.....

* Random act of kindness: It's a lovely hot day, and I was out in the garden with a pair of secateurs, like you do!! Trim this, hack that, oops didn't mean to snap that in half.... You get the idea. Trimming finished, out comes the mower. Crumbs, I'm sweating... It's dripping down my temples and running off the end of my nose. When I had finished, I threw the mower and power leads over into next door's garden, and mowed his lawn as well. He is out at work, and I like the idea that it might puzzle him how it got done!!

Get off your bums and rake in some karma with a Fox's patented random act of kindness.

Saturday, September 08, 2007

Big sky.

I am a bit obsessed with panoramas. My camera(s) are so shit, that I can't fit in nearly the amount of information as I would like to. It therefore seems logical (captain) that I take more pictures and try to get them to fit together.

Here are my latest moody Pole Moor pics.





Ouch.

I admit, I am a bit battered and bruised today. The falling off of the bike is not an activity I would readily endorse nor pursue. Alas it pursues me relentlessly, rather like the old dog biting episodes used to. Hopefully someday, the falling off thing will fade away, just as the biting thing did.

I think I have been bitten by five dogs!! Is that a record? Maybe being bitten by two dogs simultaneously is??

Well, it's as hot as the very gates of Hades out there today. Hotter than yesterday, and with no breeze at all. It's like cycling in a dessert - perhaps a red hot piece of jam roly-poly, with the obligatory molten lava temperatured custard accompaniment.

I felt obliged to try to ride at least some distance today, and managed just four or five miles before my wrists were jarred into oblivion and my back was twanging. It was far enough just to keep my muscles from going cold. Sweaty and dusty.

I watched a bit of television, and cleared a bit of my Sky+ backlog. In televisual terms, I can confirm:

1) I am the only person in England who is actually missing Big Brother.
2) I am LOVING "Heroes" thus far - Please, no spoilers.
3) The IT Crowd (new series) is still bloody funny.
4) Suburban Shootout is back and it's frikking great (just three episodes).
5) My Name Is Earl, is still one of the best shows on TV. Did anyone else catch the "Cops" parody episode? Genius!!
6) I can watch Malcolm in the Middle till the cows come home.

So that there is my telly requirements.

I have booked a bed and breakfast in Keswick for two nights. I am going to be there as a precursor to my birthday in order to walk a couple of "Wainwright" peaks. They're only going to be the small ones, but it's a start. I am going to do Catbells and Castle Cragg. If you don't know what I am on about, then download the Wainwright's plugin for Google Earth - It's great! Also, I recommend the crop circles plugin and the maze plugin, and the Wainwright's coast-to-coast plugin.

I like to try and do something less predictable than "going down town" for my birthday. The Wainwright fell walking (weather dependant) could go either way for me yet... disaster or memorable life moment?? My thirty-seventh birthday was a thirty-seven mile bike ride over the mountains in Scotland at GlenTrool. I don't think anyone who was there would ever forget that!!

Now, onto serious matters.

I have, for some time, been reading blogs which do not necessarily appear in my "favourite blogs" section. I am so lazy that I rarely get time or inclination to do all the relevant housekeeping here. I still have rodent-number-three to add to my mouse killing page!! So.... After being shamed into action by the persistence of Maxxo (from "Lights Out For Darker Skies") - I give to you:

a) Updated "fave blogs".
b) My bloglines links (where Maxxo has been included for weeks!!)


Do not sell this bugger on ebay!!

Friday, September 07, 2007

Stir crazy.

They say that the first step toward recovery, is admitting that you've got a problem.

My Sims2 confessional has perhaps triggered some sort of turnaround.

Last night, I had two strange dreams. The first dream was about the late, great, Tommy Cooper, and how I had somehow managed to get hold of this really brilliant joke of his, and actually improved upon it. I woke myself up laughing, but alas could not remember the joke, nor the cunning revision of it.

The second dream was a bit more odd.

I once spent a few weeks in France, and by the end of it was actually dreaming in French. I guess that's significant, as last night I dreamt in Simspeak!! It's a nonsensical language, and to wake oneself up by speaking "in tongues" is decidedly unsavoury.

I went for a twenty mile bike ride today instead!! I only fell off four times. My back aches, my head aches, my legs ache, my stomach aches, and of course..... the old derriere, it goes without saying!!

Believe it or not, I found a feature on my phone that lets me take three pictures, and then the phone turns them into a panorama... my first effort is here!



Update: This is not Black Moss Reservoir. This is the feeder reservoir above Scammonden Dam - the one that the M62 is built on. This is Deanhead Reservoir. Black moss is four miles due south of here!!

Spice: Who the hell is Who Flung Dung?

Re: Phone's ability to produce a panorama - I can spot a couple of glaring errors!!

Thursday, September 06, 2007

Didn't....

I should have seen it coming.

I should have spotted the warning signs.

I ignored all the warnings, and it's too late now.

Sims 2 has officially stolen my life (for the second time).

What's strange about this phenomenon, and in particular, this incarnation of it, is that I have:

Been simultaneously running multiple sim familes.

Been speaking to friends in Sim language: If you know what "myshuno" is then you've also suffered.

Been running at least one "all girl" family - I leave the rest to your imagination!!

Have already been looking around my kitchen (in disgust) at the mess and running back to tidy up my virtual kitchen clutching my cup of coffee.

Played at least one session lasting thirteen and a half hours - non stop!!

Just looked at my screen to see Angela, Lilith and Kaylynn dancing together round a radio, inviting their maid to join them!! Some of them need a shower!

Bugger.

Tuesday, September 04, 2007

Noodle doodle.

Because Yorkshire Pudding has rattled my cage, I am going to emulate his style by printing some evocative lyrics for you all.

Noodle doodle came to town,
With lots of straight spaghetti.
He twisted it around around around,
And this is what you get-i.

A-noodle-doodle-doodle-doodle motor cars,
A-noodle-doodle-doodle-doodle houses,
A-noodle-doodle-doodle-doodle butterflies,
Eek, noodle-doodle mouses!!


Or perhaps if you find that a little glib, you may prefer:

Um bongo um bongo, they drink it in the Congo.

Way down deep in the middle of the Congo,
A hippo took an apricot a guava and a mango,
He stuck it with the others, and they danced a dainty tango,
The rhino said "I know, we'll call it um bongo".

Um Bongo Um Bongo, they drink it in the Congo.
The python picked the passion fruit,
The marmoset the mandarin,
The parrot painted packets that the whole caboodle landed in,
so when it comes to sun and fun and goodness in the jungle,
they all prefer the sunny funny one they call um bongo.


And don't forget kids..... Eric, your projectionist, is having a Kia Ora - It's too orangey for crows, just for me and my dawg.....!


This blog has been brought to you by the numbers 3 and 8, and by the letter F.

Fury was not too strong a word!!

Monday, September 03, 2007

Fury.

I've been asked to look after my mum's house for a couple of days.

For those that remember my last attempt at this task, you will remember my abject frustration at the broken internet connection there. This problem, I was assured, had been fixed in the interim period.

I am sure you can all imagine, without too much effort, what the real state of the internet connection is!!

Suffice to say, I have abandoned my post, and retreated to my house in order that I can check my email at least!!

I am going to spend some time drinking coffee and sorting out my "Yorkshire Sculpture Park" photo album on Flickr.

Saturday, September 01, 2007

Gonzo blog doo daa band.

I've got a friend, and his name's Kermit. I also have a long, slightly curly nose!!

I know that's not what you meant.

Unfortunately, this next piece is either going to make me look like some sort of groupie or complete pretentious twot.... alas, I MUST blog it.

What do you do when your favourite artist and sculptor comes to town? You go there and buy the frikking t-shirt, the marmalade, and the over priced event catalogue of course.

That's exactly what we have been doing today.

I promised myself to go and see the Andy Goldsworthy exhibition at the Yorkshire Sculpture Park. The very moment I heard there was going to be an exhibition there, I was thrilled and scared. I love his work, but have always loved it from afar. What would happen if I came face to face with a stone wall, or a pile of sticks that didn't live up to my expectations?

So, I have kind of put it off. The exhibition runs until January next year, and has been running for maybe six months already. The time had come, I couldn't put it off any longer, for fear of completely missing it, and never getting such an opportunity again. I'd be lying if I said I wasn't a trifle nervous.

I was nervous that it'd be full of pontificating arty idiots, who feel they are inside an artist's head, and that you must interpret the works this way or that way, and they'd look over their half moon spectacles at me. Scared of the silent galleries where people stand thirty feet from a picture and tut at you when you walk past their visual field. Scared that the experience might somehow change the way I feel about the man and his work.

Well, I can tell you it's been one of the most memorable days out I have ever had. The weather was gorgeous today, and tramping across four or five miles of country park, dotted with sculptures, to catch all the AG exhibits was made all the more easy for the sunshine.

I can't begin to explain to you what we saw. The most amazing sculptures were (of course) in photography free zones!! Grrrrr. I have a few postcards that I will scan, and a bunch of photos from the other stuff, but here's a taster!!

Huddersfield landmark, Emley Moor mast from Yorkshire Sculpture Park. The tallest freestanding structure in the British Isles!! 330.4 metres!! - (Not one of AG's pieces)


Dumfriesshire red sandstone arches, self supporting.






Cow shit on glass.


Shadow stone fold.


Hanging trees.




Basket #7 Oxley Bank - (Not one of AG's pieces)


Outclosure.