EDitorial ± 18-Aug-2006

Out Of Office, Summer 2006

This is an Out of Office AutoReply -- thanks for your enquiry but I am now Out of the Office, returning to my sumptuously appointed desk on Monday 4th September.

Actually it felt great biking out of the site gate this evening with the sun on my back and the wind in my hair, knowing the pressure in my back tire was back to acceptable levels.

In the meantime:

See you soon.

EDitorial ± 16-Aug-2006

Small Grub Screw

Illuminating article in today's G2 concerning high-tech loos. Can you guess where I read it? Put down that sci-fi novel: bidet toilets and garlic bread, that's the future.

Not wishing to retread old ground yet again, found myself and my mighty red box o' tools in the loo on Sunday. When acquaintances catch their first view of my handyman equipment, it's just like when an interviewee in People Like Us finds out that Roy Mallard is married: poorly muted surprise. You, tools, they're thinking, what gives?

Got a shiny refitted bathroom, see, and a decree went out from Caesar saying brass is bad, chrome is good. Hence (a) purchase of new superior towel rail plus loo roll holder and (b) disposal of old inferior though still perfectly functional equivalents. I say "disposal", more like hanging around on the bedroom floor underneath the chest of drawers until the accompanying screws are all lost.

Fell to yours truly to do the needful, as the Indian boys say at work. And hey, there were instructions: blah blah 6mm drill bit blah blah backplate blah blah small grub screw. Plus this daunting phrase:

A competent person, in accordance with the fitting instructions above, should fit the product

Apparently the plumber (the aforementioned competent person) had offered to put these items up, but wifey had turned him down thinking I'd be offended. Surely you jest. Much better that I spend quality time being a man, suffering Elaine Paige's selections from the musicals, and trying to hold a pencil while keeping the spirit level, erm, level. Very same wifey had been to Asda and back before I'd finished. Why oh why does my 30mm rawl plug never go fully in to the 30mm hole? I guess that's what your pliers are for, to snip five mil off the protruding end. Another quality job.

EDitorial ± 8-Aug-2006

Eraser Ed

Admiring the very latest rubbers -- Frankie says titter ye not -- on offer in the catalogue with the see-through wrapper that popped through the post today. I'm on their mailing list, doncha know.

Frustration, "a slightly sticky surface" -- yep, that was my day. Struggled to get out from under the covers, suffered two long-winded encounters trying and failing to fix Outlook obscure obfuscations, forgot gizmo that lets me listen to soothing portable MP3 player sounds in the motor, and ended up following some L-plates.

Fog, "developed to strengthen the intensity" -- mentally not at the races. Late night with someone else's website made even later by several chapters of a gripping Alfred Bester sci-fi masterwork. Left eye also sore and sensitive thanks to what appears to be a stye, an infection of the hair follicle. I thought these went out in the 70s. Needs bringing to a head, so I read.

King Power Super Attack, "superb touch" -- it's Tuesday lunchtime, it's footy time. Unusually, found myself up the other end of the pitch. Put away a couple of sitters before skipping past a lone defender and wrong-footing their keeper, the ball rolling oh-so-slowly off the post and into the goal. Best moment of the day, no competition.

They've even been bold enough to put that catalogue online, if you dare.

EDitorial ± 4-Aug-2006

Dolmio, July 2006

To paraphrase Captain Renault, it's not looking too hot for Major Strasser, so go assemble the customary villains, gather in the typical defendants, and round up the usual suspects to form another end-of-month Dolmio (Doings Of Last Month Innoparticular Order).

That is to say, an attempt to capture past(a) events before they slip... my... mind. July 2006 was spent:

  • getting hooked on the highly watchable Weeds on Freeview's Sky 3
  • playing more chess than I've ever done: lost to Eldest ("I took your queen!")
  • teaching The Boy how to play giraffes, his pronunciation of draughts
  • reading, book the first: Po Bronson's The First 20 Million Is Always the Hardest
  • reading, book the second: Malcolm Gladwell's Blink
  • reading, book the third: Sharon Creech's Love That Dog
  • bathing in the vitriol of Charlie Brooker's BBC4 return of Screen Wipe
  • spooning in honey nut Cheerios: tasty, tasty, very very tasty
  • nodding along to Thom Yorke's The Eraser
  • buoyed by MJ Hibbett's We Validate!: tell me something that you do like, indeed
  • blown away by A Mighty Wind
  • building a home for the original comic artwork of Darren Chandler
  • supping Cravendale's vanilla milk

And that was July 2006.