Thursday, July 31, 2014


I tried to put a cycloc up in the Bomber's room last night. Initially I failed because it didn't come with any bolts for fitting it to the wall so I ordered a pack of M6x70 Loose bolt shield anchors online from Screwfix and drove round to pick them up. (That is a very impressive service by the way.)

When I got back I found that I needed at 12mm masonry drill but to fit them and that my set only goes up to 10mm. By then the shops were closed so I tried drilling 10mm  holes on the off-chance. That off-chance was no-chance, so I ordered a 12mm bit online.

I've picked it up this morning. It looks about 18 inches long. I seem to have lost my sense of scale looking at a photo of it on the interwebs. I hope it will work with a bog standard drill.

I'll have to go home and try it lunch time, as I am going out for a drink with the Burglar after work and will be in no condition to be driving rotating machinery when I get back.

So now you know.

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

"Stellar Stella" Geddit!!??

After reading the rave reviews for Gillian Anderson in a revival of A Streetcar Named Desire yesterday, I realized I had only a small chance of getting tickets, but then remembered that there was going to be a live broadcast of it at the HMV Curzon, so I pounced. Even that was a close run thing. There are very few tickets left this morning.

Coincidentally Broadcasting plays and exhibitions to cinemas is a sure-fire box office smash, says Peter Bazalgette in the Independent today, referring to the report Estimating the Impact of Live Simulcast on Theatre Attendance: An Application to London’s National Theatre.

I've never found myself in the cross hairs of a simulcast before. If it is good I might start attending regularly.

That said, as I will be unable to order a strong continental lager at the interval without giving it the full Stanley Kowalski (Icons passim) I may well find myself barred in future.

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Cream, sha boogie bop

I just stumbled on this. I need to file it away as it will definitely be worth looking at again when I have a guitar of my own to hand.

Monday, July 28, 2014

Coriander Services

1. Almighty and eternal God, who created us in Thy image and bade us to seek after all that is good, true and beautiful, especially in the divine person of Thy only-begotten Son, our Lord Jesus Christ, grant we beseech Thee that, through the intercession of Saint Isidore, bishop and doctor, during our journeys through the internet we will direct our hands and eyes only to that which is pleasing to Thee and treat with charity and patience all those souls whom we encounter. Through Christ our Lord. Amen.

2. The Fasinatng … Frustrating … Fascinating History of Autocorrect. "One day Vignola sent Bill Gates an email. (Thorpe couldn't recall who Bill Vignola was or what he did.) Whenever Bill Vignola typed his own name in MS Word, the email to Gates explained, it was automatically changed to Bill Vaginal. Presumably Vignola caught this sometimes, but not always, and no doubt this serious man was sad to come across like a character in a Thomas Pynchon novel."

Sunday, July 27, 2014

Smart Fashion

A full 80% of respondents believe that technology will seamlessly integrate with fashion trends in the future, while 72% were open to wearing clothing that tracked their health. With the success of Nike's Fuelband this latter number might not be surprising, but with 66% of participants also saying they'd feel comfortable donning wearable tech that served other useful functions it's possible tech could become fashion sooner than we think.
I went to the gym in my kit this morning, but forgot to bring a clean t-shirt so I am sitting in the office typing topless. I will venture out to the market shortly to see if any vendors and selling clobber. Short of that M&S will have to take the strain.

Strange that no Strabismus-lite fashion visionary has come up with a high tech solution to this sort of dilemma. Perhaps in future an  Amazon drone could fly in through the door and drape a shirt over me automatically.

Saturday, July 26, 2014

Amazing Spaces: Shed of the Year

I watched Amazing Spaces: Shed of the Year on Thursday night, discovering to my incredulity and delight that it was a series not a one-off-show. We live in a golden age of TV.

I am off to IKEA later today for man cave inspiration. "Opening" the kitchen to the garden, is the mystery to be solved. Decking and artificial grass may be involved.

Friday, July 25, 2014

if tube lines were people

‘A groovy, beardy, leftie, Guardian reading graduate with a lovely job in Digital Media and an accent that makes girls knees shake. Dreams of barge holidays and going to Alex James’s farm for a cheese festival. Voted Lib Dem last time and hates himself for it. Has recently set up a micro brewery in his airing cupboard and grows hops in his small patch of garden in Highgate.’

Thursday, July 24, 2014

reigning champion

Judo is back in the Commonwealth Games for the first time since 2002.

I have just realised that this means that Winston Gordon (Icons passim) who won gold at -90kg at those Manchester games is still the reigning champion although is twelve years at the top will come to an end this week.

Not a bad outing though.

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

X-10 home automation

The (deep breath) electric curtain and blind motor with automatic dawn to dusk feature (Icons passim) is now installed and working. I haven't caught it in action yet. The curtains drew when I was in the kitchen last night and they were open when I got up this morning. The temptation to announce "ah Mr Bond, I've been expecting you" the first time I am there when it happens will probably be irresistible.

A phrase from the instruction manual interests me strangely.
The controller is compatible with X-10 home automation type systems.

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Dance off

We won the quiz last night.
 - the nearest run thing you ever saw in your life. ... By God! I don't think it would have been done if I had not been there.
It was decided in a dance off very like the video above. These things are usually settled by a single nominee from each team competing to see who can answer a tie breaker question the most quickly. I think alcohol may have been involved in the elaboration of the format.

I was glad this morning that - unlike knotweed - The Sleeping Drunks Billboard hasn't made it from Japan to SW19 yet.

Japan is one of the hardest working countries in the world. So, at the end of the week, Japanese salary men and women let their hair down with very surprising consequences: Drunk Sleeping.

By the end of a Friday and Saturday night you can find thousands of people sleeping on the streets. In Tokyo, this is considered normal behavior, so we decided to address the issue.
The idea: Turn Sleeping Drunks into human billboards against excessive drinking. Armed with white duck tape, printed headlines, logos and a call to action, we turned every sleeping drunk into an anti-drinking billboard.
With very little budget (duck tape and several printed cardboards), we hijacked some of the most advertising-crowded streets in Tokyo.
As honor is paramount in Japanese society, we shamed people into drinking moderately or risk becoming our next Sleeping Drunk Billboard.

Monday, July 21, 2014

Lifestyles of the rich and famous

I have just paid the deposit for the Bomber to go to the Portugal Rugby Youth Festival with the school at the end of March next year. I do hope he will be sufficiently rested after Rutlish's Spring half term ski trip to Sansicario, Italy in February 2015.

The Summer term finishes tomorrow and he will be in Florida with his mother for most of August.

Are we driving him too hard?

Sunday, July 20, 2014

James Garner

I was sorry to hear that the ever amiable James Garner has died.

Either Support Your Local Sheriff or The Wheeler Dealers - both from the 60s - would be a great treat to watch this Sunday afternoon as a tribute to the great man,  if you can get access. The former is on iTunes I think.

Saturday, July 19, 2014

High Hopes

I have learned a great deal this last week, not the least of which are informal fallacies.
Arguments are to be avoided: they are always vulgar and often convincing.
Reading these quotes, I am beginning to think that the great Derek Parfit may be the funniest man who ever lived.

Next time you're found
With your chin on the ground
There's a lot to be learned
So look around

Just what makes that little old ant
Think he'll move that rubber tree plant
Anyone knows an ant, can't
Move a rubber tree plant

But he's got high hopes
He's got high hopes
He's got high apple pie
In the sky hopes

So any time you're gettin' low
'Stead of lettin' go, just remember that ant
Oops, there goes another rubber tree plant
Oops, there goes another rubber tree plant
Oops, there goes another rubber tree plant

When troubles call
And your back's to the wall
There a lot to be learned
That wall could fall

Once there was a silly old ram
Thought he'd punch a hole in a dam
No one could make that ram, scram
He kept buttin' that dam

'Cause he had high hopes
He had high hopes
He had high apple pie
In the sky hopes

So any time you're feelin' bad
'Stead of feelin' sad, just remember that ram
Oops, there goes a billion kilowatt dam
Oops, there goes a billion kilowatt dam
Oops, there goes a billion kilowatt dam

All problems just a toy balloon
They'll be bursted soon, they're just bound to go pop
Oops, there goes another problem kerplop
Oops, there goes another problem kerplop
Oops, there goes another problem kerplop, kerplop

Friday, July 18, 2014

the so-called “non-identity problem”

We have in the studio Bertrand Russell, who talked to us in the series “Sense Perception and Nonsense: Number 7, Is this a dagger I see before me?” Bertrand Russell.
Russell: One of the advantages of living in Great Court, Trinity I seem to recall, was the fact that one could pop across at any time of the day or night and trap the then young G. E. Moore into a logical falsehood by means of a cunning semantic subterfuge. I recall one occasion with particular vividness. I had popped across and had knocked upon his door. “Come in,” he said. I decided to wait awhile in order to test the validity of his proposition. “Come in,” he said once again. “Very well,” I replied, “if that is in fact truly what you wish.”
I opened the door accordingly and went in, and there was Moore seated by the fire with a basket upon his knees. “Moore,” I said, “do you have any apples in that basket?” “No,” he replied, and smiled seraphically, as was his wont. I decided to try a different logical tack. “Moore,” I said, “do you then have some apples in that basket?” “No,” he replied, leaving me in a logical cleft stick from which I had but one way out. “Moore,” I said, “do you then have apples in that basket?” “Yes,” he replied. And from that day forth, we remained the very closest of friends.
It is impossible to read the hilarious Reason and romance: The world’s most cerebral marriage, without being reminded of the  Beyond The Fringe bare plurals sketch I quote above. The Bare Plural (Utrecht Lexicon of Linguistics) long having been a standby of choice for a gag wrangler stuck in a tight corner.

Semantic giggles aplenty:
As they approached the restaurant they passed a wedding shop. In the window was one of those meringue bridal dresses, all petticoats, hoops and trains. “That,” said Janet, jokingly, “is what I shall be wearing tomorrow.” “Do you mean that exact one,” replied Derek, in all seriousness, “or one just like it?”
"Today, Parfit is considered by many of his peers to be the world’s most important living moral philosopher."

Of course he is.