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Showing posts from December, 2007

The End Is Nigh...

...well, of 2007, at least!

Yes, another year is under our belts like unwanted weight from too much Christmas indulgence ... and now its party time all over again!

For those of you that can't get out to party, here's a few things to keep you amused for the night, assuming you only started reading this about ten minutes to midnight!!!





In the meantime, whatever you are doing to see the new year in, have a fun and safe night and have a...

Happy New Year!!!

The Cost of Christmas

Why, oh why, do I let myself get caught out every Christmas?!

It seems that, as well as over-spending on presents for the family, I should really be putting money aside for the inevitable Christmas breakdown, too ... in addition to my hob's attempt to cook the worktop, my washer-dryer has given up the ghost for the fifth time!!

Ironically, the insurance company contacted me back in November to ask how it was doing and I told them it was doing fine, so they sent me the paperwork to apply for another year's insurance ... I think they thought they weren't going to have to pay out!

Mind you, so did I :-(

So, it looks like I'm going to spend another couple of weeks wearing old clothes I hardly wear because I can't get them washed ... good job I haven't been able to take them down to the charity shop yet, otherwise, I would need to buy them back!

I guess that also means I'm going to have to buy an airer for all the wet clothes that keep getting stuck in it...

With all…

Petrol Patrol

Its certainly worth getting up at 5:45 in the morning to go and get petrol before the masses get going for the day!!

I was half-set to go into work by train today, so put my alarms* on really early in order that I could at least check out the petrol station before heading for a train.

As I pulled into the station, I could see yellow boards and black-and-yellow tape wrapped round the various pumps, as though a row of half-wit Daleks had crashed through a police barrier and had succeeded in getting tangled up in the tape. But things were hopeful as there were two vehicles sitting by pumps, so I figured there must still be something available.

It turned out that these were the only two pumps and all they had on offer was the super stuff that costs a fortune ... 106.9p per litre ... about ninety percent of which goes into government pockets, never to be seen again!

Figuring that it could be a while until they refill their tanks, I decided to fill up. It has to be the most expensive fill-u…

Apple Grumble

Trying to rehearse a play when your head is overheating and your sinuses are fighting the Battle of the Bugs is not recommended!

A couple of days ago, I appear to have picked up this year's winter bug from someone in the family and have been fighting it off with a combination of paracetamol (which I rarely take), and hot honey and lemon ... with a shot of Jack Daniels, of course!

I thought I was doing pretty good at keeping it away, but tonight it tried real hard to get a stranglehold on my system, turning my brain to mush so that all my sentences came out wrong and I suffered from more giggle-fits than ever before ... my leg now has little welts on it where I was pinching myself to stop the laughter: lucky I bite my nails or it would look like I'd been attacked by a Christmas Elf with nail clippers!

The chuckling disappeared pretty quick when I discovered that, for the second night of trying, all the petrol stations are out of petrol. After getting back from the family visit on…

Christmas Cheer

Isn't it amazing how time flies?! One minute you're packing to visit family, full of festive cheer and the next, you're back in work and full of festive flu. Ahhh, Christmas!

It's been a full week since I had the opportunity to bash away at a keyboard so, to start with, I must apologise for not wishing you all a Merry Christmas! It was purely because time was against me. So, belatedly, I hope you all had an excellent break and managed to spend some quality time with the people that matter most to you.

Well, I don't know about you, but when Santa emptied his sack under the tree there were a fair few goodies for everyone. My list of goodies included the boxset of Heroes, Season 1 ... yay ... some photography books, Season 6 of Family Guy, a new watch and a fridge magnet telling me how other people are having sex on my behalf!

Well, someone's got to, cos I'm not getting much!

So, who out there had the most intriguing presents? Or did you receive something t…

Mid-week Distraction!

After discovering yesterday that we have gone full circle on a customer project and are having to return to the very first approach we took six months ago ... and having the dread build up at the realisation that we are about to have exactly the same conversations that we had way back then ... it was a nice distraction when my cousin sent me some links to a couple of places on t'internet.

Top of the list is GearCrave and it's list of Top 10 Most Useless USB Gadgets Of All Time, from a USB Vacuum to a USB Snowman. Unfortunately, missing from the list are those can't-do-without delectables, the USB Humping Dog, the USB Rat Race and the USB Panic Button.

How many of you have actually bought any of these? If you have, I bet you've only bought them for other people as presents, haven't you? You evil bastards!

Closely following the tat-craze, came a rather imaginative interpretation of the Karma Sutra by a Flickr user called cszar. If you want to find out what two T-800…

Ho, Ho, Flipping, Ho

Every year, I swear I'll start the Christmas shopping in November. Then November comes and I think, "It's too early! Go away!". Then I end up bouncing around the Christmas crowds like a pinball, entering shops only because I happened to be aimed that way.

A couple of years ago, I went to Bluewater about a week before Christmas and was amazed at how clear it was. Ever since, I've been going back there to get the majority of the Christmas presents.

So, in preparation for the long trip round the M25, I decided to fill up with petrol the night before. There was a fair queue at the garage, probably due to the weekend protests that were taking place, but I kind of expected that so switched the engine off and waited for the lady in front to fill her car.

Good job she wasn't the driver. After putting the nozzle back in its holster, she disappeared to the passenger door ... with the tank cap still hanging off the open cap door!

I figured she must be coming back to f…

Torchwood Heroes

It seems that there are some people at the BBC who have a sense of humour!

If you're a fan of Heroes and/or Torchwood, you should love this little clip they've put together!

Cheers, Clarky, for pointing this one out.

Enjoy!

60 Seconds of Fame

Any budding Spielbergs out there fancy 60 seconds of fame?

Well, if you do, those wonderful BAFTA luvvies, in association with the colourful Orange, have opened up a competition to the public (I'm assuming they do this every year?), called 60 Seconds of Fame.

Basically, it is your task to script, direct, produce and upload a film of no longer than ... um ... 60 seconds ... geddit?!

I wouldn't mind doing something like this myself but there is soooooo much to be doing that I just do not have the time so, for anyone who does want to do it be aware that a) the film has to be based around the theme of "Unite", and b) you have to get your skates on as uploads are only being accepted up to 5pm on 4 January 2008!

Good luck if you decide to go for it and let me know when you post anything!

Nearly nobbled by the trinkets

Anyone remember my little encounter with Tring Betty?

Well, I'd just about forgotten about it - though I'm still wary in Marks & Spencer in case she pounces on me again. Which is very daft (though very human), to link a person or event with one particular place when that place actually has no bearing! Its not like she stalks the aisles of M&S looking for people to chat to.

As I found out yesterday.

I wandered into Tring's rather excellent little card shop, House of Cards, on the lookout for some Xmas cards for the family - completely off guard - and that's when she caught me, just by the Xmas trinkets, disguising herself by wearing a hat, of all things!

At first I thought I was going to escape, but then she started with the same stories as last time and I knew I was in for another session. Thankfully, the staff in the card shop were much friendlier than the M&S bunch (who kept looking and frowning at us, like we were about to rush out with armfuls of food), …

Weekend Mix

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If you ever want to see a movie without being disturbed, see if you can get into a late night showing!

I really fancied seeing The Golden Compass and figured it would probably be really busy. However, the local Vue cinema had a late night showing I thought I'd try out ... at 11:20pm. Perhaps not the best time to watch a film if you're already tired from the week's activities, but better than being surrounded by noisy, jabbering, spotty little oiks who can't keep quiet for longer than 30 seconds.

Figuring that since there was a late show it was anticipated to be quite busy, I headed there a little early to get the good seats ... from which there was a helluva selection as there was nobody else there!

As it got closer to the movie starting, I started to realise it was pretty much going to be a private showing: by the time the film started, there were only seven of us watching. Either the film isn't as popular as they were expecting or people really don't like st…

Boycott: No. 2

Okay, so who's next on the list?

PC World.

Why?

Last night I visited their Watford store down by Bushey Arches, after popping into Comet and Currys to see if I could find a suitable hob unit to replace my knackered one. As I was in the area, I thought I would have a look about to see if there was anything I could get for the pooter: I was in half a mind to buy a joystick for a couple of the games I own.

As always, when I am on a general browse for spending money, I went up and down each aisle, stopping when I saw something of interest, whilst at the same time talking to my Mum on the phone about possible Christmas presents for people. It was one of those half-hearted shops where you're attention is divided, so you just wander.

I got about one-third of the way around the store before storming out: everywhere I went, their security guard was several feet behind me. Just to be sure I wasn't being paranoid, I stopped halfway down an aisle as he went past the end and, sure enough…

Junkette

My friend Cath is a sweet, blue-eyed, blonde-haired, demure young lady ... and is capable of innuendo that would make your Granny blush!

She is also a total radio whore!

On Tuesday, she went with her mate to play with Michael's Bublés at Wembley Arena, and then hung around stalker-style to capture the young gent before he could escape. Whilst waiting for him to show his face, she phoned Simon Beale at Heart 106.2 FM to explain her dastardly plan ... to wait.

As she had already been waiting an hour, Simon asked her to call back but managed to call her back first, and here is their conversation:









Apparently, she calls Heart a lot and can often be heard chatting Jamie Theakston up in the early hours when phoning up for iPlay!

Tart.

Brumm Brumm

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The weekend just passed saw the final stages of the FIA World Rally Championship held in South Wales ... and I was there to see it!

This was my first rally and I have to say that I quite enjoyed it ... though if I wasn't attempting to take photographs I would probably have gotten bored. Sorry!

Four of us headed up to Crychan for the first run in the morning and luckily got there early enough to get a decent parking space. It was a bit nippy, but keeping my hands in my Craghoppers when I wasn't taking pics helped keep me warm.

All-in-all, with the camera set to high-speed continuous shooting, I came away from the morning with a whopping 444 frames on the card! Of course, that doesn't mean any of them came out any good!

After arriving back home this morning at 1:20am and unable to sleep, I decided to download the pics to my PC and have a quick scan through for a couple of semi-decent ones to put onto Flickr. Here's a couple I quickly adjusted ... hopefully I'll get t…