New Look ... Again

Taking a page out of Facebook's ... um ... book, you will notice this blog has had yet another change to it's template!
It seems like only a few posts ago that I changed the template to something a bit cleaner - which is probably true - but with the length of time between posts being something of an epoch, I figured those of you who do pop by from time to time could probably do with a change.  I know I did when I logged back on.
Up to now, I have been bemoaning the fact that Blogger is not as flexible as Wordpress and considering moving everything over to something a bit more popular.  However, after wasting time configuring this latest template, I have discovered that ThemeForest have a range of Blogger templates!!
Who knew?!?!
If there are Blogger themes on ThemeForest, then there must be other options elsewhere.  So, you can look forward to an all new look in the coming weeks, just as soon as I have worked out how to do it.
Nothing like having a bit of variety :-)

Walking in Memory

On the weekend of 1/2 July 2017, my brother-in-law is walking 100km in an effort to raise money through his JustGiving page for Sands, the Stillbirth and Neonatal Death Charity.  What follows below is a very personal story of loss from a Dad's perspective...

Narcissism Alert!

As if it wasn't narcissistic enough that I have a blog about the random stuff in my life - of which there is PLENTY I have yet to tell you all - my desire to learn something new has lead to the creation of an Alexa skill that should read my latest posts to you as part of your flash briefing!

The motivation behind this is a bit more mundane.

As a tech developer who is always looking for new things to get to grips with, I thought it would be a simple introduction into the world of Alexa skills development; certainly the creation of content skills seems to be the easiest route to get started, with this blog providing an RSS feed managed by Feedburner.  As skills go, it isn't exactly going to be the most popular and would probably be a good candidate for some kind of 'worst app' award, but as it is really just a test and an introduction to the tech, I'm not overly worried about it.  Yet.

However, it is still in test as I am learning the Alexa developer interface and h…

Opening Night!

Well, after around 10 to 12 weeks of rehearsing, opening night is finally here ... and I am in NO WAY READY!!!

It doesn't matter how often I go through my lines and feel that even if I don't know the exact words I can work with it, as soon as I set foot at the venue - if not before - the adrenalin kicks in, my stomach ties itself into knots and my brain goes completely blank.  Not the best of fight or flight responses if I can't even think of what to do - I doubt I would survive in the wild!!!

This has been a tough one to rehearse for a great many reasons, but we have had all the practice available and it is now time for cast and crew to assemble and put on a good show.  So, if you fancy seeing an amateur dramatics company performing a thriller over the next three evenings, why not pop along as there are still tickets available.

Deliver Us From Evilby J.D Robins
Venue: Henderson Hall, Abbots Langley, Hertfordshire, WD5 0AR (Map)

Production Dates:

18, 19, 20 May 2017

Doors / B…

Back to the Boards

Last year was a tough one, in so many ways, and I have yet to be convinced that this year will be better, but we will see.  However, in an effort to find something other than work to fill my time and get some of my previous enjoyment of life back, I have returned to the Centralian Players - admittedly after some encouragement from various quarters.

In 9 days - Thursday, 26 January 2017, to be more specific - I will once again be appearing on stage at Henderson Hall in Abbots Langley, in a never-before-seen production, titled 'Awkward!'.  The script has been penned by our very own Steve Barker and everyone is hoping that it will eventually be published for other groups to perform.

To summarise the plot, think of that moment when your tongue rattled something off before your brain could hold it in check.  Or that situation where you have to converse with someone you have nothing in common with.  Or that moment a piece of clothing let your modesty down.  We've all had them.

Not So Habit Forming

Getting out of seriously in-grained habits is something quite tough to achieve, so when the 7 Weeks app (free version) appeared in a list of 'Similar' apps during a system re-installation, I thought I would give it a shot; the justification for which was if I can start some good habits, I could work up sensibly to taking part in Be Gung Ho later this year.

Things didn't start well...

Open Letter From my Niece to Cadbury

So, the furore of the Cadbury Creme Egg recipe change has taken something of a personal turn, with my 14-year-old niece feeling incensed enough to do that stalwart British thing ... write a letter!