Monday, October 20, 2014

A wondering star

I can't remember why, but John and I were talking about Lee Marvin's Wand'rin' Star on Saturday.

I vouchsafed the intelligence that Marvin was such a terrible singer that they had to record each note individually.

"Really all singing is done one note at a time," he quipped back merrily.

Oh really, O'Reilly.

Sunday, October 19, 2014

reeds all about it

The boys went down 17-14 to Reeds Weybridge  in  a friendly today. I use the word friendly advisedly.  Our first try was from Ben. Sid got the other and two conversions. I think we could have edged it in another ten minutes. We certainly ran a couple of kickable penalties that would have given us a draw in the last five going for a win.

They beat us 39-15 last year and won the league undefeated, so we are improving.

#inoursights next time.

Saturday, October 18, 2014

You can't handler the truth

My brother John is up for the weekend. Each of us represents both sides of the equation above. That could get messy.

Friday, October 17, 2014

21 Jump Street

[as they run out of amo, Jenko comes up with an idea he got from his chemistry class]
Jenko: You still got those shot gun shells?
Schmidt: Yeah!
[he hands Jenko the gun shells]
Jenko: Pop quiz notes. What do you get when lithium batteries react to potassium nitrate? That would be a covalent bond*, brother. That's when two atoms, they share electrons. You see, they both need what the other one has. That makes them stick together.
Schmidt: Are you saying we're covalent bonds?
Jenko: What? No! We're not atoms, dude!
[Jenko throws the alcohol bottle he put the shotgun shells in and chucks it into Domingo' limo which explodes and the blast causes Walter's limo to crash as well]
I was a spectator when Rutlish edged KCS 5-0 yesterday to get to the next round of the NatWest Cup. A solid performance from the Bomber who played the whole game on the left wing, though in truth the game was won and lost in a bruising encounter up front. He was the only year 9 boy in the starting year 10 team (there were a couple of others on the bench).

My phone buzzed when I was watching. It was an email from the school. My heart sank, such missives - if not about sport - are seldom good news, but it was praise.
I am Mr XXXX, Ben's physics teacher. I wanted to inform you that Ben's work in class today was of a very high standard and I have awarded him achievement points accordingly. I look forward to seeing more excellent work in the future.
You could have knocked me down with a feather. When I asked him about it later he explained that he had the drop on the topic in advance as he knew about covalent bonds from 21 Jump Street.

* Strictly it is an ionic bond. NJB  BSc Chemical Engineering and reigning champ at the Antelope pub quiz.

Thursday, October 16, 2014

a boy or a child?

Word has reached me by carrier pigeon that my sister Caroline has been delivered of an eight pound six baby boy on the other side of the Severn bridge.

Congratulations to her and to Neil. I will try and bunk off work and get down to see the three of them next week.

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

pull up the drawbridge

I am very surprised to learn that Ben Flower - the Wigan forward who has been banned for six months for his attack on Lance Hohaia during Saturday's Rugby League Grand Final defeat to St Helens - was born and bred in Cardiff. The general rule there - as I recall - was to attack your opponent from behind and then kick them on the floor; squaring up to someone and restricting yourself to punches once they went down tended to be frowned upon as a rather lackadaisical approach.

In other oval ball developments, the Bomber is playing up a year tomorrow afternoon against King's College School (KCS), Wimbledon tomorrow in the third round of the NatWest Cup. According to the Schools Rugby website KCS' previous fixture was against Eton College. Very posh.

On Sunday the club has a friendly against Reeds Weybridge RFC. They battered us 39-19, running in seven tries to our three, last season so this will be a good test of progress since then.

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

And what if you want to take your Nobel Prize on the road with you?

Brian Schmidt: winner of the 2011 Nobel Prize in Physics
 One of the things you get when you win a Nobel Prize is, well, a Nobel Prize. It’s about that big, that thick [about the size of an Olympic medal], weighs a half a pound, and it’s made of gold.”
“When I won this, my grandma, who lives in Fargo, North Dakota, wanted to see it. I was coming around so I decided I’d bring my Nobel Prize. You would think that carrying around a Nobel Prize would be uneventful, and it was uneventful, until I tried to leave Fargo with it, and went through the X-ray machine. I could see they were puzzled. It was in my laptop bag. It’s made of gold, so it absorbs all the X-rays—it’s completely black. And they had never seen anything completely black.”
“They’re like, ‘Sir, there’s something in your bag.’
I said, ‘Yes, I think it’s this box.’
They said, ‘What’s in the box?’
I said, ‘a large gold medal,’ as one does.
So they opened it up and they said, ‘What’s it made out of?’
I said, ‘gold.’
And they’re like, ‘Uhhhh. Who gave this to you?’
‘The King of Sweden.’
‘Why did he give this to you?’
‘Because I helped discover the expansion rate of the universe was accelerating.’
At which point, they were beginning to lose their sense of humor. I explained to them it was a Nobel Prize, and their main question was, ‘Why were you in Fargo?’”
I think most of us can safely file this problem under cross that bridge when I come to it.

Monday, October 13, 2014

Dr. Strabismus (Whom God Amuse) of Utrecht

Facial recognition software is revolutionising security systems but it’s also helping a small arts club in Spain turn a larger profit.
The industry has reportedly suffered huge setbacks after the government raised the tax on theatre tickets from 8 per cent to 21 per cent.
In an entertaining video outlining its efforts, the club says immediately after the move by the authorities, audience numbers reduced by 30 per cent in one year.
They had to think of an inventive and ingenious way of counteracting this decline.
In conjunction with advertising agency The Cyranos McCann, the venue began experimenting by installing tablets on the back of audience members’ seats and recording each time they laughed.
Entrance to the club is free, but each laugh amounts to €0.30 (£0.24) – to a maximum of 80 laughs for €24 (£18).
Dr. Strabismus (Whom God Preserve) of Utrecht is carrying out research work with a view to crossing salmon with mosquitoes. He says it will mean a bite every time for fishermen.

Sunday, October 12, 2014

The Imitation Game

I missed posting here yesterday as I was  - pay attention 007! - at Bletchley Park with Professor David Stupples, Director of the Centre for Cyber and Security Services.

Now having thrown you that bone, I have to run out again.


Friday, October 10, 2014

in case you were wondering

A man who cycles around Wimbledon on an amazing technicolour bicycle is a familiar sight around the town.
It is adorned with everything from feathers to tinsel, tassels and trophies, parades a union jack flag, with a cassette player and speakers blasting out dance music.
At night it glows with disco lights.
Now the ‘golden man’ himself has revealed his motivation for taking to the streets - to make people happy.
Referring to himself as James Bond and declining to give his real name, he said he had been doing what he calls ‘the show’ for twelve years.

He said: "The petrol that keeps me going is I see so many happy people - this is the reward I get.
"I have not got a penny for it in 12 years but seeing people happy - that’s why I do it."
The self-confessed recluse, who also describes himself as an artist and inventor and sits on a golden throne at his Recency style home in a room with a giant chandeliers, often sees decorations in pound shops and adds to the bike and his jacket.
Now you know.

Thursday, October 09, 2014

The Mercurotti

Impersonator Marc Martel has recorded a duet featuring two of his idols, opera star Luciano Pavarotti and Queen vocalist Freddie Mercury, taking on both roles himself in one single take.

Covering the Puccini classic 'Nessun Dorma', Martel channels both of the singing titans in one amazing video (and even tailors his facial hair accordingly).

And you can listen to it without having to endure me singing along. Not an option available to the folk in offices adjoining mine this afternoon.

All together now .......
Ma il mio mistero è chiuso in me,
il nome mio nessun saprà!
No, no, sulla tua bocca lo dirò
quando la luce splenderà!

Wednesday, October 08, 2014

Prepare to broaden horizons

Blimey. The Bomber appears to have got a gig in the new Agent Provocateur campaign, turning up in a black tie to shut the door about ten seconds into the clip above.

And to think he won't be old enough to watch it for another four years.

Tuesday, October 07, 2014

“1 Star Quiz Night”

Horrendously over priced (average) food. The quiz was made up of largely utterly arbitrary questions; eg. "Famous movie lines" that were more accurately described as random lines from somewhere on the script of a well known film. Staff were exceptionally rude & obnoxious throughout. I've quizzed competitively internationally & not once have I had some two bit MC tell me I'm not very good at general knowledge. I have five international champions medals that say different. All in all decent venue with loads of walk in trade has aloud a place with overpriced food and horrendous service to thrive.. people rarely do amaze me at times. Never again.
That'll be the quiz we won again last night then by acing the final film round that so perturbed last week's reviewer.

Monday, October 06, 2014