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Good weekend, everybody!

It all started when I went to upgrade my WordPress installation. And then I went to upgrade some plugins. And, next thing you know, I was paddling around in my PHP trying to tidy some loose ends. And before you know it, I had brokened the blog.

Not so’s YOU’d notice, but I messed up some important stuff behind the scenes. I built the blog nine years ago by mashing buttons until it kinda did what I wanted. I had no effing idea what I was doing and, anyway, it was a very long time ago. Trying to fix anything is…well.

It’s stable now, but don’t be surprised if I keep tinkering over the weekend and break it some more.

Have a good’un. Two weeks to Christmas!

December 11, 2015 — 11:37 pm
Comments: 25

Night in the old town


Steeleye Span was very good. The crowd was very old, but we made a respectable amount of noise. Booze was served. A good time was had by all.

The venue was something else. Believe it or not, that neoclassical thing in the middle of the picture was built as a church. The picture is maybe 1915. The building has recently been renovated into an arts center, St Mary in the Castle.

You’re not aware of it so much; it doesn’t look like that from the outside. You enter through a nondescript modern glass box down at the base there, but then you find yourself in a lovely semicircular hall. With a dome. And pillars. And less than comfortable straight-backed chairs, but we’ll ignore that for the moment. It’s early days and they haven’t got everything worked out yet.

Like the acoustics. The sound was kind of muddy and the instrument separation wasn’t good. Not enough to ruin the gig — not by a long shot — but those pillars play merry hell with the sound system.

But it was very impressive and pretty easy for us to get to. Hope they have some more good stuff there in future. Good night!

— 12:19 am
Comments: 6

Only his hairdresser knows for sure…

Heh. I’d forgotten this pitcher. I did it years ago. There’s a story that goes with the wolverine.

Trump’s remarks about Muslim immigration are making them go howling batshit boo-boo over here. Worse than the US. If you haven’t checked out the UK papers today, do so. Then read the comments section.

We’re headed for civil war, folks. I’m telling you.

Meanwhile, we’re going to a concert tomorrow night. Might be back late. Might not. Band’s even older than we are and we all need our forty winks.

December 9, 2015 — 10:21 pm
Comments: 9

Trump make beardy Paul Ryan sad :(


Really, can we have a moratorium on the phrase “this is not who we are“…? Dunno about you, but my knee-jerk goes, “don’t tell ME who I am!”

But I don’t want to talk about that. I want to talk about Paul Ryan’s beard.

I like it.

I’ve long been an advocate of facial hair in politics.

See here. And, um, here. But not so much here.

Exit question: better not hurt Muslim feelings or they’ll go radical, is an awful lot like better have dinner on the table at six or you’ll get a fat lip. Isn’t it?

December 8, 2015 — 8:09 pm
Comments: 9

Do it! DO EET!


Dunno if you saw over the weekend, Warden from AoSHQ was banging the drum for the NRA. Point being, joining the NRA is the best possible rebuke to the gun-grabbing instincts of our bugfuck crazy lords and masters.

I first joined the NRA in 1999, after the Columbine High School massacre. Yup, they tried to pin that one on the NRA, too. I didn’t know much about the NRA at the time, but I knew that was totally unfair.

And it was. Have you ever been to an NRA gathering? Nicest bunch of sweet old men you could meet. The kind of guys whose other memberships are the Shriners and the company bowling team.

Not a homicidal maniac in the bunch.

Membership has some unexpected benefits. Like, the best damn t-shirts I’ve ever owned, no lie. Good designs and sturdy as heck. Mine are just beginning to wear out after a decade and a half of hard service. Plus, if you wear an NRA t-shirt and scruffy jeans into Whole Foods, you can blend in beautifully for a while…and then enjoy the klunking sound when your slogan finally registers on hippiebrain.

And the postman who delivers an NRA mag to your house every month is a polite postman.

I had planned to buy myself a life membership on my way out of the States, but then the bottom fell out of the property market and I barely made the move by the (financial) skin of my teeth. I really wanted that jacket! I’ve since totally let my membership lapse (if you want the magazine, it’s an extra $10 over and above for ferriners).

Perhaps I’ll grab an associate membership, just to show willing! I wonder if they saved my old member number?

December 7, 2015 — 9:22 pm
Comments: 28



Behold, my favorite ever mouse — the MS Trackball. Look at the price. Look at it! That’s not a P’shop. They actually cost that now, on account of MS isn’t making them any more.

The closest thing still in production is the Logitech cordless, which isn’t bad. It’s no Microsoft, but it isn’t bad, but even this one has edged up to £50. I’m not sure why these are so rare. People who love them (like moi) really hate to use anything else. That’s what you call a ready market.

What happens to them, after many hundreds of hours of happy mousing, the three little ball bearings that hold the ball suspended go flat on one side, at which point the traction gets gummy. I kept all the old dead ones, of course. Some day, I might get desperate enough to try replacing those little ball bearings, but by god the tolerances would have to be close.

For now, though, I have broken down and broken out my last backup Logitech mouse, after the last one became intolerable. The occasion? Bundle Stars sold me the whole Quake series for, like, five quid.

I know what I’m doing this weekend. Happy frags, y’all!

December 4, 2015 — 10:24 pm
Comments: 14

Nuh-nut nuh-nut nuh nuhhh nuhhh


Well, well…owing to my splendid performance (and the retirement of my immediate superior), I am likely to see more work coming my way in the future.

Now, I know this seems improbable for an office worker at a historical society, but this is likely to mean I’m kinda sorta on call. Like, have to go into the office on short notice and take care of stuff.

To that end, I’m thinking of getting myself an electric bicycle. Any of you ever owned one of these things? I’m not entirely sold on the idea, and at £1,000 a pop, I’d kind of like to be first.

p.s. Poor old Margaret Hamilton. She was the nicest old lady in Hollywood, and children ran away screaming when they saw her on the street for the rest of her life.

December 3, 2015 — 9:42 pm
Comments: 24

Sun-ripened weasel


I only have room for one: bath or blog post. Sorry, you guys, but I smell…

December 2, 2015 — 11:11 pm
Comments: 4

What a time to be alive!


Calooh! Callay! Just Cause 3 was released today!

The (wafer thin) plot to the Just Cause games goes like this: you’re CIA agent Rico Rodriguez. You are dropped on a tropical island ruled by a tinpot dictator. You will best serve the cause of Great Justice by fucking up as much shit as humanly possible. You have a powerful wrist-mounted grappling device (like unto Spidey’s web spinners), a flying suit, a parachute and the ability to hijack any vehicle on the island, including jets and helicopters.

The only change from game to game: it gets bigger and prettier. This one is on an island chain of over a thousand square kilometers, with downright cinematic go-booms, flying sequences and — I shit you not — car chases through fields of sunflowers and lavender. Watch the trailer!

You know, you guys, computer games are the one area of popular culture where our team has prevailed. Big time. Rough justice, x-treme individualism, and lots and lots of lovely boom sticks and explosions. No kid who grows up playing this stuff will ever vote for gun control.

December 1, 2015 — 9:49 pm
Comments: 3