Tuesday, 28 April 2009

Tuesday Tunes: Word Association

Over at The Music Memoirs it's time for a little word association:

Tell us the first musical thing that these words remind you of.

Foible: The Kinks
Radio: Video Killed The Radio Star - The Buggles
Heat: The Heat Is On - Glenn Frey
New: Brand New Key - Melanie
Angel: Theme from Angel - Darling Violetta
Girl: My Girl - The Temptations
Fear: Don't Fear The Reaper - Blue Oyster Cult
Siren: Blockbuster - The Sweet (which starts with the sound of a siren)
Sex: S-E-X-X-Y - They Might Be Giants
Weird: Al Yankovic

Monday, 27 April 2009

Monday Movie Meme

Feature Presentation...


This week Molly and Andy at the Bumbles Blog are asking all about steamy love scenes, so here's my pick:

Body Heat (1981)

The Big Easy (1987)

Hot Shots (1991) (a comedy scene admittedly, but it definitely sizzles, if only in the bit where Topper's frying food on his loved one's stomach)

Thelma and Louise (1991)

Watchmen (2009) (actually this love scene will require a bit of do-it-yourself to make it steamy; you'll need to turn the sound down and then play any music other than Leonard Cohen over it)

Sunday, 26 April 2009

Sunday Stealing: The Mud Meme

You can play here.

1. What are your current obsessions?

The internet, Spider Solitaire (a game I must have lost half my life to), and procrastination.

2. Which item from your wardrobe do you wear most often?

I've no idea. I really should start recording my clothes-usage, that way I'd be able to give a definitive answer, plus have another answer for #1.

3. What's for dinner?

Chicken and roast potatoes.

4. Last thing you bought?

If you ask me on a Sunday, it's always going to be pizzas.

5. What are you listening to?


6. If you were a god/goddess who would you be?

I'd be Thor, God of Thunder - call me superficial, but the guy's got great hair.

7. Favorite holiday spots?

My hometown of Fleetwood.

8. Reading right now?

Currently I'm reading and editing a humour novel I wrote. It's laugh a minute stuff (unfortunately that's minute as in really small, rather than minute as in sixty seconds).

9. 4 words to describe yourself.

Nice, lazy, predictable, snarky

10. Guilty pleasure?

Yes, please. If you're offering, that is.

11. Who or what makes you laugh until you’re weak?

My niece, when she sings along, well shouts along, to songs in the car, as loud as she possibly can, making herself hoarse in the process. If she carries on at her current rate, she may well lose her voice one day, but it'll have been worth it for the laughter.

12. Planning to travel to next?

Not sure. I just got my passport this weekend, so the world's my oyster.

13. Best thing you ate or drank lately?

Drinkwise, it's got to be Vimto, foodwise I had some really nice ice cream a few weeks ago (which was just like Mr. Whippy ice cream that they used to sell when I was a kid).

14. When did you last get tipsy?

Tipsy? I tend to leapfrog over tipsy, and go straight to outrageously drunk. That was quite a few weeks ago.

15. Care to share some wisdom?

No, I've got precious little as it is, so I'm not about to go sharing it around.

16. Nicest thing anyone’s ever said to you?

While people have said some really nice things to me (and sometimes they weren't even being sarcastic), I honestly can't single out any of those as the nicest (guess that's another thing I'll have to start keeping records for).

Saturday, 25 April 2009

Saturday 9: A Little Less Conversation

Here's my answers to this week's questions from the Saturday 9 Meme:

1. If you could have just one more conversation with a person from your past, who would it be?

Probably my grandmother, although I've got no idea what I'd say to her.

2. Do your friends tend to be male or female?


3. What is in your car’s trunk?

I haven't got a car.

4. What was the last CD that you purchased?

The Coraline soundtrack.

5. What is your favorite movie and why?

Broadcast News, which I like because it's smart and funny, but I can't exactly put my finger on that intangible something that makes it my favourite.

6. If you could wake up with a new talent tomorrow, what would it be?

The ability to predict lottery numbers.

7. What is your favorite day of the week and why?

Probably Saturday, because I don't have to go to work, I get to see my nephew and niece, and there's usually something good and mindless on the television in the evening.

8. What are you wearing when you feel you’re at your best?

A smile.

9. When was the last time you cried?

Probably at the end of some movie or other.

Thursday, 23 April 2009

Thursday 13: At The Risk Of Repeating Myself

Header from samulli

At the moment, I'm trying to edit a novel and, as I travel on that journey, I'm coming across a lot of repetition that I have to fix. While doing this, it's struck me how unfair it is that songs can get away with as much repetition as they like, indeed they thrive on it, and I've thought how slightly funny it would be if songs were edited to remove their repetition. So here are thirteen examples of why editing songs to remove their repetition just wouldn't work:

1. The Hallelujah Chorus

Back in 1741, George Frideric Handel wrote this song, which repeats the word hallelujah over and over again. Sure, it could stand to lose a couple here and there, but if all the repetition was stripped, it would hardly be a chorus, and so would just be called Hallejulah (like that Leonard Cohen song, the one which repeats the word hallejulah over and over again).

2. The Mamas & The Papas' "Monday Monday"

If you remove all of the repetition, this would open with "Monday, nah , can't trust that day". Somehow I don't think Monday by The Mas & Pas would have been quite that big a hit.

2-4. Various Beatles Songs

"She loves you, yeah," doesn't quite have the same impact as the original, and you can hardly sing along drunkenly with ever-increasing volume to the minimalist "La, Hey Jude". If that's not bad enough, the chorus of Yellow Submarine would just be one line.

5. Musical Notes

They're always using the notes A to G in songs, but H to Z never get a look in. What kind of musical conspiracy is that?

6. Gladys Knight & The Pips

Sadly, since their sole purpose in live was to repeat her words, the Pips would all be leaving (leaving) on the Midnight Train to unemployment.

7. Queen's Bohemian Rhapsody

"Thunderbolts and lightning, very, very frightening" is a bit long-winded. Thunderbolts are just lightning bolts, which is a subset of lightning, so this could be reduced to "Lightning, very frightening". Don't even get me started on the Galileos.

8. On The Twelfth Day Of Christmas

The first eleven verses are made fairly redundant by the twelfth which relates near enough everything that's gone before. The twelfth verse would be sufficient, although, maybe just a preamble is needed about how the true love kept increasing the Christmas presents, never thinking of the storage and maintainance problems they would cause, nor the pointlessness of buying more rings than the receiver's fingers could possibly ever accommodate.

9. Happy Birthday

As an attempt at topicality, I'll drag in this song on this day of birthdays (Shakespeare was born and died on this day, it's also my sister's birthday today, and most importantly of all, it's the birthday of Lee Majors, the Six Million Dollar Man). Anyway, if the song was sliced down to the minimal "Happy Birthday to you, dear " then no one would have had the time to taken the requisite deep breath to blow out their candles, and as a result all those wishes would be lost.

10. Meat Loaf's "I Would Do Anything For Love (But I Won't Do That)"

Maybe Meat would have had more time to actually get around to doing that, if he hadn't spent so much time mentioning "I would do anything for love".

11. 2 Unlimited's "No Limits"

A song that seems to consist mostly of the line "No, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no ,no ,no, no there's no limit!". If something was done about the repetition then the song would be in danger of vanishing, although, on the plus side, there'd be far less negativity present.

12. Pussycat Dolls - Don't Cha

Just because the Dolls have made up a new mispronounciation of "Don't you" they feel obliged to repeat it ad infinitum. Clearly by their next record Stickwitu the novelty of repeating made-up words had dimmed slightly.

13. Britney Spears' Song

I can't remember what it's called, only the lyrical genius that is the chorus, which goes something like "Womanizer, woman-womanizer, you're a womanizer. Oh, womanizer, oh, you're a womanizer baby. You, you-you are, you, you-you are Womanizer, womanizer, womanizer (Womanizer)". Maybe removing repetition from songs wasn't such a bad idea after all.

Tuesday, 21 April 2009

Tuesday Tunes: Soundtracks

Over at The Music Memoirs they're asking the following soundtrack-related questions:

More and more TV shows are getting soundtracks these days. Do you own any or have any on your wish lists?

I own a few - Thirtysomething, Twin Peaks, Moonlighting, The Wonder Years, Buffy (at least three different ones for that), Angel, Xena (the one with the Ballad of Joxer The Mighty on it), Smallville, possibly some others I can't remember.

Have you ever discovered a song or artist because it was on a tv show?

Well, to be pedantic quite a few of my favourite artists (Suzanne Vega, Tori Amos, They Might Be Giants) I first came across on music TV shows, and The Rutles was a TV show. In the realms of teledrama, The Rascals' "Good Lovin'" I first came across on an episode of Magnum PI; I discovered the song "Cry Like A Rainstorm" by Linda Ronstadt because it was on an episode of Thirtysomething (unfortunately the version on the show, by Susannah Hoffs, I liked a lot better); I also discovered Rickie Lee Jones's "It Must Be Love" (great song) because it was on the Thirtysomething soundtrack album. More recently I discovered Kim Richey's "Home" (another great song) plus Darling Violetta thanks to Angel.

What TV do you wish had a soundtrack but doesn't just yet.

None in particular, though there are quite a few theme tunes I wouldn't mind seeing collected that I can't seem to find anywhere (most of all, Kirsty MacCool's theme tune to an old UK show called Dream Stuffing; a terrific tune that made me want to seek out her music in the first place).

Monday, 20 April 2009

Fan Award

My friend over at A Blog In The Rough has kindly given me the above award, so a big thank you to her. Also, since she says I should feel free to grab my award and dub other cool blogs too, here's some more I'd like to forward it to:

The Bumbles Blog
Duck life (I know how accident prone you are, Tilli, so please don't put your fingers anywhere near the fan - oops, tempting fate again)
Mimi Writes.......

I would forward it to some others I follow, but they've already got them, and I wouldn't want them to freeze with all those fans around.

Monday Movie Meme

Feature Presentation...


This week Molly and Andy at the Bumbles Blog are asking all about movie snacks, and listing their favourites, thus amazing me with the amount of movie snacks apparently available in the United States.

When I was young, here in the UK (or Merrie Olde England as it was known back then), there were a limited number of snacks available - Kia Ora (a vivid orange drink, which I quite liked), small tubs of ice cream, and orange lollies (of a make that you'd never encounter outside the cinema). Annoyingly, you didn't buy the snacks on the way in then, but instead they used to stop movies in the middle to sell them.

Over time of course, new snacks made their entrance with their groovy jingles - popcorn (with its "Butterkist, Butterkist, Ra Ra Ra" jingle), Westlers' hot dogs (with its memorable "Moo"), and King Cone (with its clever "King Cone").

And so, progress continued, and now the number of snacks available is almost out of single figures. There are the old favourites like ice cream, popcorn (salted or toffee-covered; sadly we don't get to spread butter on our popcorn in this country) and hot dogs, plus things like nachos with salsa or molten cheese, and pick 'n' mix. My own current favourite is an ice cream milkshake, which you can get at some cinemas.

Sunday, 19 April 2009

Sunday Stealing: The 40s Meme

You can play here.

1. My uncle once :

Built a computer at school back in the days before home computers. He's quite clever.

2. Never in my life :

Have I broken a bone. Wow, that's tempting fate, isn't it?

3. When I was seventeen :

It was a very good year.

4. High School was :

Mostly fun.

5. I will never forget :

The formula for solving quadratic equations.

6. I once met :

The guy who played Curly Watts on Coronation Street. He told me an unfunny joke.

7. There’s this girl I know who :

Is baking cakes for charity.

8. Once, at a bar :

I tried barflying (a weird non-sport where you wear velcro, throw yourself at a wall and are supposed to stick), ending up headbutting the ground, and got a free drink out of it.

9. By noon, I’m usually :


10. Last night :

I installed Skype on my computer.

11. If only I had :

Put "A DJ saved my life" for the last answer.

12. Next time I go to gym/church :

I'll wonder whereabouts I took the wrong turning.

13. Susan Boyle :

Has a great voice.

14. What worries me most :

Varies from day to day.

15. When I turn my head left, I see :

Shelves of books, comics and CDs.

16. When I turn my head right, I see :

A door.

17. You know I’m lying when :

My nose grows bigger.

18. What I miss most about the eighties :

My friends from university.

19. If I was a character in Shakespeare, I’d be :

Chased by a bear, knowing my luck.

20. By this time next year :

I'll be a millionaire (not really, it's a reference to a UK sitcom).

21. A better name for me would be :

Inconceivable. I've had the current one for so long, that it would just be confusing if people had to start calling me something else.

22. I have a hard time understanding :

My course notes from university on the few times I've stumbled across them.

23. If I ever go back to school, I’ll :

Probably have a hard time blending in.

24. You know I like you if :

You ask me if I like you, and I say yes.

25. If I ever won an award, the first person I’d thank would be :

Whoever voted.

26. When I compare 80’s rock to 90’s rock :

I find neither are quite as funny as 30 Rock.

27. Take my advice, never :

Smile at a crocodile.

28. My ideal breakfast is :

Served in bed.

29. A song I love, but do not own is :

Wooly Bully by Sam the Sham and the Pharaohs.

30. If you visit my hometown, I suggest :

You bring an umbrella.

31. My favorite Beatle is :

Stu Sutcliffe (I like to be different)

32. Why won’t people :

Finish their own sentences?

33. If you spend the night at my house :

Then please give me lots of warning so that I can tidy up first.

34. I’d stop my wedding for :

A practical joke. I'm sure she'd see the funny side.

35. The world could do without :

Reality TV shows (but not vice-versa).

36. I’d rather lick the belly of a cockroach than :

The bellies of two cockroaches.

37. My favorite blonde is :

A movie with Bob Hope in.

38: Paper clips are more useful than :

Anything, in the hands of MacGyver.

39. If I do anything well, it’s :


40. And by the way :

Aren't there a lot of questions this week.

Thursday, 16 April 2009

Thursday 13: Comic Book Romance

Header from samulli

This week we've actually been given a theme of weddings, so, since I've not been to that many weddings, here's a list of thirteen comic book weddings I've read about (all characters copyright Marvel and DC Comics):

1. Reed Richards And Sue Storm

Back in Fantastic Four Annual #3, Mister Fantastic tied the knot with the Invisible Woman (what did he see in her?). Clearly the idea of a wedding wasn't thought enough to lure in the fans, so they gave us this cover:

The marriage also featured in the acclaimed '90s series Marvels, in which artist Alex Ross gave us this scene. Talk about a guest list (click on the picture and play spot the celebrity).

2. Crystal and Quicksilver

Another Fantastic Four issue, and another wedding. This time we have Crystal of the Inhumans marrying the mutant Quicksilver. All they wanted was a quiet wedding.

3. Superman and Lois Lane

Back in the '60s, Superman was always marrying Lois Lane (or Lana Lang or Lori Lemaris), but in imaginary stories (below is a famous one where he's married both Lois and Lana).

Then in the '70s, he married Lois for real, albeit on a parallel world, Earth-2:

Then, finally, in the '90s, after shuffling his feet for over half a century, Lois and Clark finally got married:

4. Batman and Catwoman

Back on that parallel world, Earth-2, where Superman married Lois Lane, Batman was depicted as marrying Catwoman, and they eventually had a daughter, The Huntress, who continued his heroic legacy.

5. Peter Parker and Mary Jane Watson

Spider-Man married Mary Jane back in the '80s in Spider-Man Annual #21 (but they've both recently forgotten about it and gone back to being single - hey, that's comic books for you):

And, just to show that zombies can be in love too, here's a zombie version:

6. Jor-El and Lara

Superman's parents are shown being married below. A few years later their planet will explode. You win some, you lose some.

7. Adam Strange and Alanna

Adam Strange, a nobody on Earth who's beamed to the planet Rann and gets to be a hero (a cool metaphor for reading superhero comics if ever there was one), here marrying his longtime alien girlfriend, Alanna. Alan Moore subsequently took some of the romance out of it all by revealing that Adam was merely being used for breeding purposes, the male populace of Rann being sterile.

8. Lightning Lad and Saturn Girl

Two members of the Legion of Super-Heroes who recently turned up on the TV show Smallville (as did Zatanna, but not in the same episode of course, that would just be like bad fanfiction). Anyway, the two Legionnaires got married in this over-sized Treasury Edition with a cover that screams everything but wedding at you.

9. Bruce Banner and Betty Ross

The Incredible Hulk got married, although his wife later died due to his gamma radiation. Poor Hulk.

10. Rick Jones and Marlo Chandler

Now we get down to some of the more obscure characters to non-comic-readers. Rick Jones is one of the Hulk's friends and he got married a while back in undoubtedly the funniest wedding comic I've ever read (courtesy of writer Peter David), which also featured a cameo from Neil Gaiman's Death.

11. Donna Troy and Terry Long

Donna Troy, aka The Teen Titans' Wonder Girl, got married to dull non-superhero Terry Long back in the '80s.

12. Yellowjacket and The Wasp

Yellowjacket (aka Hank Pym aka Ant-Man aka Giant-Man aka Goliath) married his girlfriend The Wasp, in one of those weddings you hear about where a python tries to crush the bride. Don't worry, the animal wasn't hurt.

13. The Flash and Iris West

I've not actually read this one, but I wouldn't reach that magic 13 without it, and it's got a cool cover, so let's include it.

Wednesday, 15 April 2009

Wednesday Media Mix

Here's a meme from over at My Digital Ghost.

[Listen] Think back…way back. What was the very first song you liked to listened to on repeat?

I honestly can't remember. Back when I was a kid, we'd only get records one at a time, so we tended to listen to most of them over and over again anyway (entertainment was fairly slim back in those days).

[Watch] I watched Synecdoche, New York last night, and although it was fascinating, I had a really hard time distinguishing what was real and what was imaginary (which is why I’d like to watch it again). What’s your favorite movie in which the lines of reality are blurred?

The Usual Suspects, although you don't find out the lines are blurred until the end.

[Read] Do you trade books with friends/family, or hold onto everything?

I've occasionally borrowed out books, usually to my sister, but never traded (well, not since I was a teenager, when a lack of finances meant I was swapping stuff all the time). Overall, I tend to hold onto everything.

Tuesday, 14 April 2009

Tuesday Tunes: Rainy Day Music

Over at The Music Memoirs they're asking the following rain-related questions:

You wake up and its pouring down rain, what music do you listen to to lift your mood?

Well, rain in itself I don't find particularly depressing, but if I was looking for something to lift my mood I guess I'd go for something uptempo - They Might Be Giants' "Someone Keeps Moving My Chair" is relentlessly bouncy so that might work, or maybe The Boo Radleys' "Wake Up Boo!" which might actually manage to wake me up fully.

What's your favorite "Rain" themed song?

It Might As Well Rain Until September - Carole King

What song best suits a "thunder storm?"

I've no idea. There's an orchestal track called "The Storm" by Jim Steinman on his Bad To Good album, but he also recycles it as "The Opening Of The Box" for his Pandora's Box album, so I guess it's not that specifically storm-related. There's also some songs from ELO's Out Of The Blue album, making up the "Concerto for a Rainy Day" (the most famous being Mr. Blue Sky), but that's a collection of songs, rather than a single one. Let's go for Bohemian Rhapsody by Queen which has the bombast of a storm, not to mention thunderbolts and lightning, very, very frightening.

Sunday, 12 April 2009

Sunday Stealing: The Green Meme

You can play here.

1. What is your current obsession?

Playing Vampire: The Masquerade - Bloodlines, an incredibly addictive PC game.

2. What’s a good coffee place?

Brazil's renowned for it.

3. Who was the last person that you hugged?

I can't remember.

4. Do you nap a lot?

Yes, although in an unplanned way; usually during something that I really wanted to watch on television.

5. Tonight, what’s for dinner?

I don't know. I haven't planned that far ahead.

6. What was the last thing that you bought?

Some pizzas.

7. What is your favorite weather?

Snow, mainly for the novelty value, and the possibility of not going to work.

8. Tell us something about one blogger who you think will play this week?

No, this is a meme and it's all about me,me (hence the name); I don't particularly mind divulging things about myself here, but if you want to know about other bloggers, then read their blogs.

9. If you were given a free house that was full furnished, where in the world would you like it to be?

I'd like it to take up the whole of the Earth, and wipe out homelessness in a single stroke (well, to be honest, my initial reasoning for it was just so that I got the best deal out of it).

10. Name three things that you could not live without.

Family, friends, oxygen.

11. What would you like in your hands right now?

A kebab calzone.

12. What’s one of your guilty pleasures?


13. What would you change or eliminate about yourself?

That's a tough one because I'm fairly perfect, although perhaps I could do with being a little less modest.

14. As a child, what type of career did you want?

Well, when I was around five I wanted to be a pilot, but I couldn't pronounce the letter 'l' at the time (I ended up going for elocution lessons) so the teachers would think I was saying pirate. To avoid the confusion, I remember upgrading my aspirations to astronaut.

15. What are you missing right now?

A good answer for this question.

16. What are you currently reading?

A book about self-editing.

17. What do you fear the most?

Bad things happening to the people close to me.

18. What’s the best movie that you’ve seen recently?

The Curious Case of Benjamin Button

19. What’s your favorite book from the past year?

I've not read many books in the past year, but it would have to be either Charlie Brooker's Dawn of the Dumb or Russell Brand's My Booky Wook.

20. Is there a comfort food from your childhood that you still enjoy?

Various chocolate bars (Twix, Kit Kat, the list is endless).

Saturday, 11 April 2009

Saturday 9: Enjoying Your Holiday

Here's my answers to this week's questions from the Saturday 9 Meme:

1. There are several religious holidays going on this weekend. Any plans?
None in particular.

2. Do you look forward to holiday events or do they stress you out?
I generally look forward to them.

3. Do you have any traditional meals that you will eat?
Beyond a possible piece of easter egg, no.

4. We are changing seasons. What are you looking forward to?
Warmer weather, longer days.

5. Around here it is turning to spring. What signals spring to you?
The calendar (and even then I'm not sure exactly when spring begins).

6. What is your favorite season and why?
Either summer, because of the warm weather, or winter, because of snow and Christmas. Definitely not spring or autumn, which are both kind of wishy-washy as seasons go.

7. Do you have a favorite food when dining out?
Cheeseburgers; kebabs if I feel like a change.

8. What is your favorite beverage when out?
Depends who I'm out with. Either lager and lime or Vimto.

9. When is your next big night out?
At the moment, I don't know. I've got something penned in for the third of June, but hopefully something will crop up before then.

Sunday, 5 April 2009

Sunday Stealing: Our Third Meme About Blogging

You can play here.

1. How did you come up with your blog title OR what does it mean?

Well, when I first considered doing a blog, I came up with a list of about ten titles. Some of them were already taken, and this one seemed the most apt of the remainder. It comes from a caption I remember from an old Batman comic (Brave and the Bold #115, should anyone be interested) about the loom of fate weaving an eerie tapestry.

2. What are your general goals for blogging?

I'm not sure I have any general goals. Just something to do, and it's nice if I make people laugh occasionally.

3. Do people “in your real life” know that you blog and do they comment on your blog OR is it largely anonymous? How often do you post (x per week)?

As far as I know, no one in my 'real life' knows. I try to post daily, but things get in the way occasionally.

4. How often do you read other blogs (x per week)?

I'm reading other blogs every day.

5. How do you select blogs to read (do you prefer blogs that focus on certain topics or do you choose by tone or…?)

I select in all sorts of ways. Some I read based on topic, some I read based on tone (humorous ones appeal to me; although thinking back, most of my favourite posts from others have been non-humorous in nature), some I read by randomly picking other people who've answered memes I've done, or checking out the blogs of people who've left comments, or clicking on links I see on blogs.

6. Do you have any plans to copy your blog entries in any other format, 0r do you think that one day, you’ll just delete it all?

No plans to copy my blog entries to another format; the format they're in now is the one they were designed for, and probably the one they work best in, if they work at all. Having said that, providing the hosting stays free, I'm equally sure I won't ever delete it.

7. What are the things you like best about blogging?

Well, it's interesting snooping into the lives and thoughts of other people, and it's always nice to foist my thoughts on the world.

8. What are the things you don’t like about blogging?

It can cut into my precious sleeping time. Also, I occasionally seem to find myself fighting against blogger's block.

9. How do you handle comments?

As far as writing comments, I try to leave them where I can, but occasionally I've not got the time or anything interesting to say.

As far as receiving comments, I treasure them dearly, and tend, every so often, to go through all of the comments, commenting on them where relevant.

10. Do you have any burning thoughts to share on blog etiquette?


11. Any desired blog features?

Well, since I seem to do the same memes week after week, with the same headers, it would be nice if I could set up some post templates, so I didn't keep having to copy last week's all the time. Of course, it could be that other blogging software already provides this feature (and, knowing my luck, blogger does and I just haven't realised it yet).

12. Have you suffered blog addiction?

No, I can handle it, and I could stop at any time. Really I could.

Saturday, 4 April 2009

Saturday 9: Organize This

Here's my answers to this week's questions from the Saturday 9 Meme:

1. Are you an organized person?
Organized, yes; tidy, no.

2. What is one thing about your home that has to be just so or it drives you crazy when it comes to organization?
It always has to be in the same location. Apart from that proviso, I'm willing to give it a lot of leeway.

3. Do you have one little nuance about your organization that most people consider to be a little over the top? What is it??
I have a tendency towards organized chaos (hey, why fight entropy?) which some people consider to just be laziness on my behalf (when in fact there's also a certain amount of apathy involved).

4. What is your favorite organizational tool? (bins, closet organizers, etc.)
My brain, my computer. I also quite like the floor, which tends to be a lot nearer, and therefore convenient, than other storage places. Sure, you can only store things there for so long before the floor gets full, but then you just start building a new level, looking for the right-sized gaps for whatever you need to deposit there, like a big giant three-dimensional game of Tetris (which quickly turns into Jenga when you've got to find something).

5. Where is your favorite place to buy organizational needs?
I prefer not having organizational needs. Sure, I could buy storage boxes and the like, but there's nowhere to put them amongst all my junk.

6. Are you more organized at work or at home?
At work.

7. Are you more or less organized than your significant other?
I haven't got a significant other, but if I did I'd hope she'd be more organized (which this meme seems to equate with tidy for some reason) than me. Also, probability practically demands that that would indeed be the case.

8. Does your significant other help or hurt organization?
Her continued non-existence definitely doesn't help with the tidying up.

9. What is the most important recreational items that you organize?
My CDs (although organizing them only amounts to feeding them into iTunes).

Sky Watch Friday: Too Lazy To Wait For A Sunset

Here's a picture I took today on Fleetwood's coastline.

For better photos, including ones where they had the patience to wait for a sunset, go to Sky Watch Friday.

Thursday, 2 April 2009

Thursday 13: Nay Sayings

Header from samulli

This week, a list of thirteen proverbs and sayings that don't really stand up to rigorous analysis:

1. A Stitch In Time Saves Nine

I could snarkily point out that while the current scientific view of the universe allows for the bending of time, it does not currently entertain the notion of the stitching of it, but let's not be picky. This proverb basically says that if something needs stitching, then you're best doing it at the start when it will take a single stitch to fix it, because later on the tear/hole/whatever will just get larger and you'll end up having to do nine stitches. Now, let's be realistic; if you're too darn lazy to do just one stitch, there's no way you'll ever get around to doing nine of them, is there? No, best to just see it as an excuse to throw the thing out and go on a shopping spree for a replacement. The proverb should really read, A Stitch In Time Robs You Of A Shopping Trip.

Also, in its wider sense, this is a warning about procrastination but I think my analysis of that aspect's best left for another day.

2. A Trouble Shared Is A Trouble Halved

No, it isn't. You just get the other person worrying about it too, and maybe gossiping about it to other people, and then things escalate and you wish you'd just kept quiet. Possibly more accurate would be A Trouble Shared Is A Trouble Squared, which at least has the grace to rhyme.

3. It's Always Darkest Before The Dawn

Well, at a wild guess, given the way the Earth rotates, and not dragging any reflected light from the moon into things, it'll actually be darkest about halfway between dusk and dawn.

4. A Bird In The Hand Is Worth Two In The Bush

I wasn't sure about this, so I did the following rigourously scientific experiment:

Score = 24

Score = 23

As you can see, A Bird In The Hand wins, although it's a close call, and it would have been an easy mistake to make in those pre-Scrabble times.

5. Let Sleeping Dogs Lie

Hardly the most insightful of sayings. What else can you let a sleeping dog do. It won't bark, it won't play fetch, it won't chase its tail; pretty much all a sleeping dog can do is lie, and possibly play dead.

6. Don't Count Your Chickens Before They're Hatched

With the advent of X-rays, surely that's no longer the case. Also, with counting them before they're hatched, at least you're fairly sure of the maximum number, whereas if you try and count that plethora of chicks running around everywhere you're bound to lose count or miss one.

7. You Are What You Eat

But surely that would make us all cannibals. Ick.

8. Accidents Will Happen

Well, duh. If they didn't happen, there'd be no need to mention them, would there?

9. Two Heads Are Better Than One

Well, call me picky, but I'm far happier with just one. Having two would just get people staring and pointing at me. Two Heads Are Better Than None would be more accurate, since I'd far rather have an additional surplus head added than have my current one removed.

10. An Englishman's Home Is His Castle

Actually, mine's more of a junkyard.

11. A Watched Pot Never Boils

Oh yes, it does. You've just got to be patient.

12. Laughter Is The Best Medicine

Not if you've got a sore throat, it's not.

13. Money Doesn't Grow On Trees

So, dollar bills are made of paper, and paper comes from trees... Yeah, someone's not quite thought this one through.

Wednesday, 1 April 2009

Wednesday Media Mix

Here's a meme from over at My Digital Ghost.

[Listen] If you listen to podcasts, what are you current favorites?

I listen to a few. My current favourites are iFanboy which is just a bunch of guys reviewing each week's comic books, and Timeghost (a comedy arts review podcast by the UK comedy double act of Armstrong and Miller, which sadly finished at the end of last year, but I'm so lax in syncing my iPod that I only listened to the last episode recently). I also enjoy Mitch Benn's podcast with its comedy songs, but it's a bit infrequent.

[Watch] What decade to most of your favorite movies come from? You can even narrow this down by year if appropriate.

Most of my favourite films are from the Eighties, but that might be because I was watching lots of movies then (there was a film society while I was at university, and then when I started work there was a tiny cinema just round the corner from me).

[Read] What’s the most depressing book you’ve read? The most uplifting? And if you want, explain why.

A lot of Iain M. Banks's Against A Dark Background is a great read, but from what I remember the ending was quite depressing. As for the most uplifting, I'd probably go for Peter David's Imzadi (a heap of fun and a heartwarming ending).