How could I forget the technology?

I have a new mobile phone — a Nokia 6230. After years of dicking me about, Orange acquiesced to all my demands: new phone now, better contract. Hoorah. Bluetooth here we come.

And it has a camera: this is a bit of video footage from the ringing tour. Dunno how many players there are going to be for 3gp format stuff.

My KVM idea isn’t working too well — for some reason, I just can’t get the existing keyboard and mouse to work with the docking station. Oh, well, it’s almost geekier to have two monitors on the desk, and the keyboard isn’t so very bad.

Long time, no post. Busy week.

Stayed home Tuesday night to iron in front of the Channel 5 CSI double bill instead of going ringing. Was making an effort to get the house a little tidier before my parents visited on Tuesday. Ironing 30 of the shirts on the ironing pile certainly helped get some things out of the way.

So, cleaning Wednesday night and then dinner for my parents on Thursday: onion soup, bangers and mustard mash, and a tarte ganache. Before the meal we had a guided tour together of the Council House, which was fascinating.

Friday was work, peering through windows of cars on forecourts, erm, sending Paul off to visit his aunty (don’t forget the preserving pan) erm, thenwot? Oh, yes, went to see a doctor friend in version of the Mikado. Unfortunately — or fortunately, depending on your perspective — she wasn’t able to be in the second act because she was hauled off the stage to tend to an audience member who’d collapsed.

Before and after, drinks in the Victoria Hotel, Beeston. Model pub. Monumental choice of well kept beer to choose from. Unsurprisingly always busy.

Today I joined in a tour with the Southwell Diocesan Guild of Bellringers — we took the tram around Nottingham and rang in a number of different towers. I dodged some of them, but got two ‘grabs’ — chances to ring in towers I’d not been to before. At Bulwell this afternoon, I rang an almost flawless Bob Major plain course, despite not having done anything like it for months. I was quite chuffed, and I must make sure I ring more like this on Tuesdays. Now that I don’t have a house to clean.

Piscean genocide

The stiff, lifeless bodies of two of the five new goldfish have been unceremoniously disposed of in the traditional manner. I think my optimism re: miraculous recovery following better living conditions was misplaced.

The mussels seem fine. They seem able to move a long old way under their own steam, and are often in surprisingly remote corners of the tank.

I have just had to cry off a meal with friends at the Balti House on health grounds. My abdomen has been painful for the last week, and my jaw for even longer, and I just didn’t think one of their traditional enormous curries would help terribly much. Instead, I made some sort of Greek potato stew, improvising from a recipe found on cix:/gourmet — sliced, sauteed potatoes laid thinly across the bottom of a dish, covered in a sauce made from onion, garlic, tomatoes, olives, red wine and chilli, and baked for an hour. I didn’t quite cook it for long enough, so the onion was still a bit too crunchy. I ate it with home-made bread and home-brewed beer and felt very virtuous. I can manage more healthy eating like this.

The onions were from that nice grocery called Sheikh, where the fabulously priced oranges come from. Onions are no more expensive–there ought to be a sign that says, “Sheikh, for people who like onions.” A huge gert multi-kilo bag that was tricky lug home for only two-fifty. Spectactular. I made onion soup to celebrate, and will serve it to my parents when they visit later in the week.

Over in Ambridge, I’m convinced that Jill Archer is an evil witch, despite the placid exteriour. The way yesterday she asked whether Ruth’s cough (was it TB? Secondary cancers? Mammoth red herring?) was starting to get better–the clear implication was that she’d taken the pins out of the Ruth-Archer wax doll concealed in a dresser-drawer in the Bungalow. Today, the R4 announcer told us “Kenton Archer is helping the children look for firewood for bonfire night; what could possibly go wrong?” What indeed.

Aquarist’s news

Oh dear. An aquarist friend of Paul’s has identified Fin Rot on the backs of some the new fish, and has a gloomy prognosis.

But http://www.fishdoc.co.uk/disease/finrot.htm says:

[...] stress is the major cause of fin rot. This could be due to a fish disease such as parasites, or overcrowding, low oxygen levels, bullying, poor water quality etc. The most important first step is to resolve any stressors. If caught early, this may be sufficient.

Hmm. Now the fish are in my care, they’re not overcrowded and the should be enough oxygen. I can work on the water quality. Maybe it’s not such a problem.

Oh, well. At least the mussels don’t have fins.

The highlight of the weekend was a trip up to Hull to see I’m Sorry I haven’t a Clue being recorded the New Theatre. A bit of a strange experience: it’s much slower in real life, presumably because they edit it down to half an hour. Certainly funny, but I actually think I prefer it on the radio. The audience was staggeringly middle-class — I felt out ra-raed when I popped down to the bar at half time for a coffee. A barely teenage girl asked, “Do you think a place like this will do Pimm’s?” (I was uncertain whether she was dissing Hull in general or the New Theatre in specific. Bits of Hull were quite pretty, and the New Theatre was great.) and someone else was complaining that the dry white wine wasn’t dry enough for her tastes. Apparently the shows aren’t to be broadcast until quite late in December. You’ll recognise me as the one person to applaud a move in Mornington Cresc. I really like the episodes where the audience reacts to MC moves with applause, gasps, etc., but my attempt to get that into this show fell flat.

Hull being near Grimsby it was easier to pop to the same friend’s parents we stayed with last week for the night rather than struggling back to Nottingham in the dark. It’s a shame that Paul wasn’t able to come with us this weekend, but his madrigal group had a gig at someone’s wedding.

Paul’s parents popped in briefly this evening on the way somewhere and had a nice cup of tea and a slice of today’s bread, made with Hovis granary flour.

I started drinking the homebrew in earnest. It is nice, but there’s so much CO2 in the pressure barrel that pouring the beer is tricky: you end up with an enormous head, and if you turn the tap on too hard by mistake instead of turning it off, beer all over the cellar floor. I don’t think I’m actually going to be drinking many of these 40 pints…

Getting through the Alias at a rate of knots — now at 2×11. What next?!

Aquarist's news

Oh dear. An aquarist friend of Paul’s has identified Fin Rot on the backs of some the new fish, and has a gloomy prognosis.

But http://www.fishdoc.co.uk/disease/finrot.htm says:

[...] stress is the major cause of fin rot. This could be due to a fish disease such as parasites, or overcrowding, low oxygen levels, bullying, poor water quality etc. The most important first step is to resolve any stressors. If caught early, this may be sufficient.

Hmm. Now the fish are in my care, they’re not overcrowded and the should be enough oxygen. I can work on the water quality. Maybe it’s not such a problem.

Oh, well. At least the mussels don’t have fins.

The highlight of the weekend was a trip up to Hull to see I’m Sorry I haven’t a Clue being recorded the New Theatre. A bit of a strange experience: it’s much slower in real life, presumably because they edit it down to half an hour. Certainly funny, but I actually think I prefer it on the radio. The audience was staggeringly middle-class — I felt out ra-raed when I popped down to the bar at half time for a coffee. A barely teenage girl asked, “Do you think a place like this will do Pimm’s?” (I was uncertain whether she was dissing Hull in general or the New Theatre in specific. Bits of Hull were quite pretty, and the New Theatre was great.) and someone else was complaining that the dry white wine wasn’t dry enough for her tastes. Apparently the shows aren’t to be broadcast until quite late in December. You’ll recognise me as the one person to applaud a move in Mornington Cresc. I really like the episodes where the audience reacts to MC moves with applause, gasps, etc., but my attempt to get that into this show fell flat.

Hull being near Grimsby it was easier to pop to the same friend’s parents we stayed with last week for the night rather than struggling back to Nottingham in the dark. It’s a shame that Paul wasn’t able to come with us this weekend, but his madrigal group had a gig at someone’s wedding.

Paul’s parents popped in briefly this evening on the way somewhere and had a nice cup of tea and a slice of today’s bread, made with Hovis granary flour.

I started drinking the homebrew in earnest. It is nice, but there’s so much CO2 in the pressure barrel that pouring the beer is tricky: you end up with an enormous head, and if you turn the tap on too hard by mistake instead of turning it off, beer all over the cellar floor. I don’t think I’m actually going to be drinking many of these 40 pints…

Getting through the Alias at a rate of knots — now at 2×11. What next?!

Fish

I wasn’t planning on getting more fish, I had in mind scrubbing out the aquarium for one last time and putting a small ad in the post office to flog the lot off at bargain basement prices.

However, Paul missed the flobbalob of tiny gills, and I gave in. Today the tank is filled with golden life again: five tiny goldfish and two swan mussels that seemed like a good idea at the time. Now, all I need is a wireless web cam to share our enthusiasm with you dear reader… no! enough technology now!

The KVM switch finally arrived today and I’ve been playing with that. No sign of docking station yet, however, which limits scope for using KVM somewhat.

Saw Collateral earlier in the week with the Orange 2-4-1 deal. Quite liked it. Reminded of Nicole Kidman’s comments about stopping going out with Tom Cruise meant she could wear high-heeled shoes again without worrying about being taller than him.

Milton Jones

Hmmm, plenty of .sig material in these old Radio 4 shows.

I think for the next ole while, this little ditty will do:

I’ve been here since the dawn of time
All big and red and mighty
So please don’t drop your litter here
But take it home to Blighty

Pam Ayres Rock

D’oh the technology

Fab weekend spent in Grimbsy and Cleethorpes. The Rumble Band put in a good performance and my mates danced like loons. I’m not much of a dancer, but the music was good. And two sets of friends’ parents very kindly fed us over the weekend. Lots of fun in the car both ways with some CDs of radio four classics: Sunday Format from1999, The 99p Show from goodness knows when and some Clue.

And home. Paul has choir this evening, so I’m re-routing my office in line with my plan to spend more time up here rather than elsewhere in the building. I am very pleased to have finally sorted out the network problem that has been bugging me since I wired the house. Laptop can see that desktop (which is elderly, but has 100GB on three hard disks) exists but cannot connect to it. Both are fine connecting to the internet through the router. Desktop cannot see any machines on the net. The solution is depressingly simple: add the network IP range to the Trusted Zones in ZoneAlarm firewall. But there’s a real reason why this has not occurred to me in months: since getting the router, I’ve not been running the firewall on this computer at all. It seems that its security settings apply whether or not the program is running.

Finally getting file sharing across my machines working is a godsend: I can at long last back up the mission critical stuff on my laptop, and burning CDs of work stuff no longer involves slow uploads of zip files to temporary web space before downloading them again on the machine that has the elderly 4-speed CD writer.

Since file-sharing is now on the menu again, I’ve decided to re-do the network up here. Using the wireless network really slows thing down, so I’ve dug out an un-used 24 port 10base-T hub out of my redundant technology crate and now have a wired network on my desk. I’m so proud. Flashy lights at eye-line and everything. Of course it could be so much better if it was a 100base-T switch… but I’ve managed to spend my pay in a record number of hours, and anyway, yesterday’s order at e-buyer is already closed.

If I’m spending more time up here, I’m really going to have to tidy up a bit and clear my desk. And start the five year filing backlog that has followed me through three house moves. Eep.

Alarming news on the home-brew front: the pressure barrel wasn’t quite up to the pressure generated over the weekend, and beer has been forced out of the tap. Opening the tap led to beer coming out at an unbelievable speed and foaming all over the bathroom. So, tilted it a bit so that only air was coming out and let some of the pressure out. Now the whole lot is in the cellar. I misread the instructions the first time; it now needs to sit and settle in the cold for 14 days.

Now that we’re done with 24, I’m moving on to Alias-2. But Paul is less keen so I’m watching these on my own.

Tonight’s bread is Olive Bread.

D'oh the technology

Fab weekend spent in Grimbsy and Cleethorpes. The Rumble Band put in a good performance and my mates danced like loons. I’m not much of a dancer, but the music was good. And two sets of friends’ parents very kindly fed us over the weekend. Lots of fun in the car both ways with some CDs of radio four classics: Sunday Format from1999, The 99p Show from goodness knows when and some Clue.

And home. Paul has choir this evening, so I’m re-routing my office in line with my plan to spend more time up here rather than elsewhere in the building. I am very pleased to have finally sorted out the network problem that has been bugging me since I wired the house. Laptop can see that desktop (which is elderly, but has 100GB on three hard disks) exists but cannot connect to it. Both are fine connecting to the internet through the router. Desktop cannot see any machines on the net. The solution is depressingly simple: add the network IP range to the Trusted Zones in ZoneAlarm firewall. But there’s a real reason why this has not occurred to me in months: since getting the router, I’ve not been running the firewall on this computer at all. It seems that its security settings apply whether or not the program is running.

Finally getting file sharing across my machines working is a godsend: I can at long last back up the mission critical stuff on my laptop, and burning CDs of work stuff no longer involves slow uploads of zip files to temporary web space before downloading them again on the machine that has the elderly 4-speed CD writer.

Since file-sharing is now on the menu again, I’ve decided to re-do the network up here. Using the wireless network really slows thing down, so I’ve dug out an un-used 24 port 10base-T hub out of my redundant technology crate and now have a wired network on my desk. I’m so proud. Flashy lights at eye-line and everything. Of course it could be so much better if it was a 100base-T switch… but I’ve managed to spend my pay in a record number of hours, and anyway, yesterday’s order at e-buyer is already closed.

If I’m spending more time up here, I’m really going to have to tidy up a bit and clear my desk. And start the five year filing backlog that has followed me through three house moves. Eep.

Alarming news on the home-brew front: the pressure barrel wasn’t quite up to the pressure generated over the weekend, and beer has been forced out of the tap. Opening the tap led to beer coming out at an unbelievable speed and foaming all over the bathroom. So, tilted it a bit so that only air was coming out and let some of the pressure out. Now the whole lot is in the cellar. I misread the instructions the first time; it now needs to sit and settle in the cold for 14 days.

Now that we’re done with 24, I’m moving on to Alias-2. But Paul is less keen so I’m watching these on my own.

Tonight’s bread is Olive Bread.