Friday, December 31, 2010
Thursday, December 30, 2010
In a possibly related development, glowing Tron-like white detailing magically appeared on the photo to the left that I took yesterday of the Bomber with the 19 assorted sporting medals he has acquired this year. We took them to Cardiff to show his grandfather. It's just the flash reflecting on the decoration of his Ben 10 dressing gown, but it certainly looks strange.
Wednesday, December 29, 2010
That is my take on 28 December 2010 at least. I concede it is difficult to discern any coherent narrative thread.
Tuesday, December 28, 2010
Sunday, December 26, 2010
Friday, December 24, 2010
Thursday, December 23, 2010
Now I find that you have to set aside an evening for charging battery packs, checking for and installing software updates, deciding if extra memory cards are needed, and craftily testing configuring peripherals and games with PCs and gaming consoles to ensure that your gifts work "out of the box" when unwrapped.
Last night as I was charging up the Bomber's new Xacti HD camcorder, it struck me that I have bought him a camera with easy YouTube integration at the same time as getting the Wii Michael Jackson dancing game for a neice who will be with us on Christmas Day.
A postprandial Christmas moonwalking challenge in the presence of video equipment - with which to immortalise it - and a ready supply of booze may turn out to have been a bad idea.
Islington wishes you and your significant other/partner a very GM-free, organic, locally sourced, carbon-neutral Winterval and a diverse gender/colour-blind, differently abled 2011 CE.
Wednesday, December 22, 2010
The Manic Street Preachers perform their new single on Strictly Come Dancing above. It all seems a long way from hobnobbing with Fidel Castro.
In the official video (which I can't embed) James Dean Bradfield walks around in Cardiff while Ian McCulloch strolls Liverpool in split screen. It is hardly the Thomas Crown Affair, but I can certainly identify all the home town locations.
Tuesday, December 21, 2010
In 1971, when I lived in London, I was working with a friend, Alan Power, on a film about people living rough in the area around Elephant and Castle and Waterloo Station. In the course of being filmed, some people broke into drunken song - sometimes bits of opera, sometimes sentimental ballads - and one, who in fact did not drink, sang a religious song "Jesus' Blood Never Failed Me Yet". This was not ultimately used in the film and I was given all the unused sections of tape, including this one.I may hate Dignity, but I love this post-minimalist hymn. Go figure.
When I played it at home, I found that his singing was in tune with my piano, and I improvised a simple accompaniment. I noticed, too, that the first section of the song - 13 bars in length - formed an effective loop which repeated in a slightly unpredictable way. I took the tape loop to Leicester, where I was working in the Fine Art Department, and copied the loop onto a continuous reel of tape, thinking about perhaps adding an orchestrated accompaniment to this. The door of the recording room opened on to one of the large painting studios and I left the tape copying, with the door open, while I went to have a cup of coffee. When I came back I found the normally lively room unnaturally subdued. People were moving about much more slowly than usual and a few were sitting alone, quietly weeping.
I was puzzled until I realised that the tape was still playing and that they had been overcome by the old man's singing. This convinced me of the emotional power of the music and of the possibilities offered by adding a simple, though gradually evolving, orchestral accompaniment that respected the tramp's nobility and simple faith. Although he died before he could hear what I had done with his singing, the piece remains as an eloquent, but understated testimony to his spirit and optimism."
Monday, December 20, 2010
Sunday, December 19, 2010
Saturday, December 18, 2010
(plays discordant notes on bugle)
Pay attention! This is your employer speaking!
I am cancelling the attack orders for tonight!
I know that I told you to show no mercy, and to attack, and to pay no attention to what I say!
I am ordering you to pay attention!
You will not attack, Cato!
Blake Edwards RIP. I have lost track of the number of times the Bomber and I have watched DVD's from my Pink Panther boxed set.
Friday, December 17, 2010
Thursday, December 16, 2010
Chris is back in hospital again! Wound infected and may have an abscess - he's been through the mill in the last 9 days. So, back on IV antibiotics and we'll know more after an ultrasound tomorrow.Considering the corners of the world to which our compadres from university and the Pamplona jaunts of the 80s have scattered, I thought I would note it here as I know that some of them check in to these pages from time to time.
Wednesday, December 15, 2010
Hardeep Singh Kohli explores the religious and cultural make-up of the UK by visiting three of its most diverse cities.
His first stop is Cardiff, and he starts his journey at Cardiff Bay, now the home of the Welsh Assembly building and rows of gleaming luxury flats. But this was formerly the site of the docks and the gateway for hundreds of thousands of people from all over the world who settled in Cardiff, making it the vibrant, multi-cultural city it is today.
Hardeep travels around the Butetown district, once a melting pot of nationalities and faiths, such as Somalis, Yemenis, Norwegians and he will hear how 60% of Cardiffians can actually trace their lineage back to the Irish labourers shipped in to build the docks in the nineteenth century.
He will hear how these different groups lived, worked and worshipped together in Butetown before the area was flattened in what is still known as 'the deluge'.
Well worth a listen, as are Martyn Joseph – Cardiff Bay and Shirley Bassey – The Girl From Tiger Bay which I picked up from the show's soundtrack.
Tuesday, December 14, 2010
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
1 large (225g) onion, finely chopped
1 clove garlic, finely chopped
3 teaspoons curry paste
1/2 teaspoon chilli powder (optional)
225g assorted left over cold cooked vegetables (for instance, Brussels sprouts, peas, beans, carrot and parsnip)
225g cold roast or boiled potato coarsely mashed
2 or 3 tablespoons leftover bread sauce (if available)
salt to taste
Put the oil in a pan and stir-fry the onion, curry paste and garlic for about 5 minutes.
Add the cold cooked vegetables, with just enough water to keep things firm but mobile.
Add the mashed potato, using it to bind the other vegetables together.
Season to taste, mix well and serve hot.
Monday, December 13, 2010
They are fitted with an SPPX polarized and photochromic lens. The Zeal Optics frame feeds data to you on a micro LCD screen which appears to hang six feet in front your eyes.
£449.99 gets you an accelerometer, gyroscope, temperature and pressure sensors. GPS chip, micro LCD display, and 3-dimensional lens. All of a sudden 2007 seems a long time ago Brendan.
In tonight's epsiode of the Gadget Show at 8pm on Five, Jason Bradbury and Ortis Deley visit the ski slopes of Switzerland to test navigation technology and outdoor clothing, as well as sledges, snowboards and bikes.
The bomber and I will be watching and fine tuning our Christmas lists for next year's skiing
Sunday, December 12, 2010
[Chazz and Rex are testing Chris]Airheads got it right all those years ago. His Indesctructibleness gives us his diet advice in the Observer today:
Chazz: Who'd win in a wrestling match, Lemmy or God?
Chris Moore: Lemmy.
[Rex imitates a game show buzzer]
Chris Moore: ... God?
Rex: Wrong, dickhead, trick question. Lemmy *IS* God.
When I lived in Heaton Moor Lane in Stockport in the early 60s there'd be 35 other people living in the same room, so it was kind of cramped. The basic diet consisted of creamed rice. Punch two holes in the can with an old beer-bottle opener and you can suck the Ambrosia out, no problem.What can Delia, Nigella, Gordon, Jamie et al offer that holds a candle?
Saturday, December 11, 2010
A man of such boundless energy and invention it would seem, that even during the stress of his wartime code breaking, he spent a sleepness night composing one of the world's longest palindromes:
Doc note: I dissent. A fast never prevents a fatness. I diet on cod.
Friday, December 10, 2010
Thursday, December 09, 2010
Wednesday, December 08, 2010
Larsson left about three quarters of a fourth novel on a notebook computer, now possessed by his partner, Eva Gabrielsson; synopses or manuscripts of the fifth and sixth in the series, which he intended to contain an eventual total of ten books, may also exist.
Tuesday, December 07, 2010
Monday, December 06, 2010
According to the BBC website:
Scientists have identified a way of prompting nerve system repair in multiple sclerosis (MS).One reason my ears pricked up when I heard of it was that neurogenisis was mentioned and I had read the chapter on it (3. New Neurons for Old Brains) in the book "The Plastic Mind" this weekend.
Studies on rats by Cambridge and Edinburgh University researchers identified how to help stem cells in the brain regenerate myelin sheath, needed to protect nerve fibres.
The stem cells referred to in the study are neural stem cells, not embryonic stem cells, and they are producing new neurons in your brain all the time.
I had no idea.
All hail Professor Charles ffrench-Constant, for his fascinating research and wonderful name.
Sunday, December 05, 2010
Saturday, December 04, 2010
Friday, December 03, 2010
Could David Hume Have Known about Buddhism? Charles Francois Dolu, the Royal College of La Flèche, and the Global Jesuit Intellectual Network.Could anything be more up my street than this? Speculation about Le Bon David and Jesuits who had studied Buddhism in Thailand and Tibet.
Thursday, December 02, 2010
the cloud is the water we're swimming in.
Further Bradley Manning, the prime suspect in the leaking of top secret documents to the WikiLeaks website, is a computer expert schooled in Wales accorning to the Telegraph.
All together now:
Somethin' ain't right
Gonna get myself, I'm gonna get myself
Gonna get myself connected
I ain't gonna go blind for the light which is reflected
I see thru you, I see thru you
I see thru you, I see thru you
Ya dirty tricks, ya make me sick
I see thru you, I see thru you
Gonna do it again, gonna do it again
I'm (gonna do it again, gonna do it again)
Gotta do right (gonna do it again)
'Cause somethin' ain't right
(gonna do it again)
Gotta do right, come on
Prodnoose: I take it you're gonna do it again.
If you make sure you're connected,
the writing's on the wall
But if your mind's neglected,
stumble you might fall
Wednesday, December 01, 2010
A book is the only place in which you can examine a fragile thought without breaking it, or explore an explosive idea without fear it will go off in your face. It is one of the few havens remaining where a man's mind can get both provocation and privacy.