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Coming to the end of the wizard game at last. It was fun – and, in the end, much bigger than I expected. I certainly won’t 100% it. It would take ages to get all those last little bits.

There were several epic spider fights, of course. I’m not -phobic about much, but arachna- makes the list. There’s a subtle thing they did in dedicated spider fights: they waved tiny black tendrils in the corner of the screen. This was probably ha-ha funny in 2D, but in VR it was both subliminal and unnervingly like what it’s like to have a spider on your face.

I know this because I had a spider on my face once. I was about nine, I was at a picnic, I thought my hair was blowing in my eyes and someone said to me, “did you know there’s a spider on your face?” I can feel it now. Spiders are scratchy.

Happy last day of April. We know what comes next, don’t we? BIRTHDAY MONTH!

April 30, 2024 — 7:21 pm
Comments: 6

Old faithful

This lightbulb has burned continuously in a fire station in Livermore, California since 1901. Not the same fire station, and it’s been off a few times for power outages and moving fire station. It is a handblown bulb with carbon filament, invented by Adolphe A. Chaillet.

When first manufactured, it burned at 60 watts. It is now 4. I know the feeling.

It has a website that hasn’t been updated since 2015, and boy does it look like it. The webcam is no longer operational, but the AI who lives in my browser says it’s still burning. Wikipedia seems to agree.

It is open to the public.

And with that, weasel doth vamoose. I’ve just been reminded my art club newsletter should go out Wednesday.

April 29, 2024 — 6:59 pm
Comments: 4

And to think, the internet is free

Someone in a newsgroup said someone else looked like the Globglogabgalab and if that ain’t just the most Googlable thing ever. Turns out it’s from a terrible 2012 half hour animated film called “Strawinsky and the Mysterious House.” And ye gods is it awful.

A user called frecklepants on IMDB called it garbage and said, “Deeply deeply unsettling. the animation is terribly and the weird flesh monster is going to give me nightmares. also deeply antisemitic and tells kids they shouldn’t read books??? bad bad movie” which covers the bits of it I watched.

In the basement of said Mysterious House lives this atrociously animated fleshy abomination called the Globglogabgalab that likes books. It is so awful that six years ago – six years after it was created – the internet met and fell in love with it. They got married and had babies.

Starting with this short rap offering. Then this remix. Once you watch a couple of Globglogabgalab videos – fair warning – YouTube decides you love them and want to see them all. There’s nearly always one in my feed every day.

Crab Globglogabgalab Rave
Globglogabgalab but it’s made in spore and someone’s screaming the lyrics
The Globglogabgalab in Real Life (turn on Closed Captioning and laugh while it struggles)
Globglogabgalab but every schwabble adds a new major 3rd harmony
The Globglogabgalab but every time he says something that doesn’t make sense his voice gets lower
25 “I’m the Globglogabgalab” Sound Variations in 60 Seconds
Space Globglogabgalabbity
Globglogabgalab but it speeds up 10% every time he says Glob, Glab, Schwob, Schwab, and Schwobble
Globglogabgalab Instrumental (surprisingly nice)
The Globglogabgalab but its backwards (sounds like he’s speaking German)

Folks, this shit goes on for pages, and YouTube thinks I need to see a new one every day.

Have a shwabble-dabble-wabble-gabble flibba blabba weekend, everyone!

April 26, 2024 — 6:00 pm
Comments: 7

These things are dotted all over the coast

WWII pillboxes. Looks like this one was vandalized last Fall. They blew up some cans of spray paint inside it. Given that it’s a giant hunk of cement intended to survive artillery, it’s fine.

We run across them all along our familiar routes. And anti-tank obstacles – mostly row upon row of big cement structures with fanciful names like coffins and dragons teeth.

Nearly all these things are under protection orders now, so they won’t be dug up. Very jarring to find in the English countryside, but a constant reminder of how bad things got here and how very, very nearly there was a German invasion that the South coast was expected to fend off.

Naturally, there’s a study group, if you’d like to learn more.

Fun fact: cans of spray paint explode in the color of the paint inside.

April 25, 2024 — 7:22 pm
Comments: 7

People is weird

I don’t work Wednesdays, so I spent an obscene amount of time playing the wizard game today. I’m happy to say the world is stuffed full of cats and you are allowed to pet them. I mean, they’re funky skinny cats (most illustrators just don’t do cats), but better than usual. And, I repeat, you can pet them.

Thinking I can’t be the only one to wonder how many cats there are and whether I get an achievement for petting them all, I had a little google. Turns out, people are big mad that other people like the cats.

Just a heads up, Hogwarts Legacy isn’t a cat collecting sim. But, if you’re prowling around for a purr-fect count, the game doesn’t specify. It’s more about wizards and spells than tallying tails.

Honestly, Hogwarts Legacy is all about that wizarding world charm, not keeping a kitty census.

And then there’s this peculiar article, written as though the wizarding world is a real thing with actual rules, that warns you not to pet the cats because they might be some creepy old wizard pretending to be a cat.

In the game, cats are not meant to be pet as the petting feature suggests, they are meant to practice Avada Kedavra on.

“Don’t pet them, cast the forbidden dark magic murder spell on them instead!” is certainly a take. Honestly, what did I expect from a site called comicbook.com?

I know what I’m playing next. It’s supposed to be gorgeous in VR.

April 24, 2024 — 7:54 pm
Comments: 5

The ones that don’t land

I have an Early Bird Special story. When I was working corporate in the States, there was a shopping center next door that had various eateries and office supply stores. That kind of thing. It had a restaurant popular with the Early Bird Special crowd and we were accustomed to see it lit up with wrinklies first thing in the morning.

I’d gone over for…staples or some shit before work and I was walking back across this very parking lot. Wearing my novelty CORONER t-shirt.

Oh, dear. I was approached by a small group of tiny nervous grandmas and asked if there was a problem. TBH, I felt genuinely shit about it and never wore that shirt again. The things you think are funny when you’re 25.

I’m sure there’s AI that will be able to identify this parking lot in the next six months. I had a real Google Maps adventure finding it myself. Dumber than AI, me.

It seems as though my old company has sold off quite a lot of what used to be a big campus. I know they’re not hurting for money so it must be a strategic financial decision.

Another evening lost exploring Google Maps. It’s even more fun in VR!

Oh, yeah – our internet is fixed.

April 23, 2024 — 7:55 pm
Comments: 4

Aw, bless

If you click the article, you do get the full mugshot, but I love the way sussex.news crops the pictures on the front page so it looks like we’re arresting toddlers for serious crimes.

Still no internet. As it turns out, it’s only £3 a gigabyte to top up, but you can easily use a gig a day browsing the internet. Okay, that’s still not a lot of money, but it feels like a rip.

We don’t have them here, but it looks like I’ve reached the Early Bird Specials stage of life.

April 22, 2024 — 5:56 pm
Comments: 4

She took her time, didn’t she?

Okay, I can put up with thirty years of it, but after that? I am done!

Actually, I think most of those advice letters are fake. At least, the ones in porn magazines are – I know somebody who used to write them.

Meanwhile, they tell us it could be Thursday before our internet is back. Because they have to use a cherry picker on a busy road, they have to do a survey first. I think it has to do with who controls the road (the county council or the Highways Agency). I am unclear.

All’s I know is, my YouTube addiction is on hold while we pay per byte. Good weekend, everyone!

April 19, 2024 — 7:38 pm
Comments: 6

They’re still finding ’em

More ordnance dug up on Sussex beaches this month. There’s still an insane amount of it out there. I don’t know that I’d handle those big ones – they look unstable.

More on the ‘splodey part. The boys like the ‘splodey part.

We’re still connecting through our phones. The engineer turned up this morning and said, “this is a job for a cherry picker!” and the cherry picker guy turned up and said, “this is a job for traffic control!”

So with any luck, tomorrow our road will be blocked by professionals while the cherry picker guy reattaches the phone wire on top of our pole. I feel important.

Also, our power is going off tomorrow morning for completely unrelated reasons. Wheee!

April 18, 2024 — 6:43 pm
Comments: 3


Our landline rang this afternoon – a rare thing these days – and just as Uncle B answered it, our phone line died. Phone, internet, all of it. A spooky crackly sound came out of the receiver and that’s it.

We know who called. It was a living person, not a dead pet or anything.

A brief conversation with our supplier later, and they’re sending an engineer in the morning. It’s just us, so something physical probably happened to our line. It’s been hella windy lately.

No internet for the evening? That’s unpossible! Have you tried turning your phone into a hotspot? Turns out it’s super easy. You just poke that button in the picture.

The first time I did, it I had to set up a name and password (name: weaselfone password: mustelid. Help yourself). It’s painless and almost quicker than our router. I recommend it in a pinch.

But of course, it’s burning data, so I won’t linger.

April 17, 2024 — 7:37 pm
Comments: 4