One of the birthday cards I got last week is a musical one. It plays about sixteen or so bars of Beethoven’s fifth, lifted from a 2002 performance by the Royal Philharmonic. I now use it to add dramatic weight to even the most mundane of sentences.
“Want a cup of tea?” DA DA DA DUUUUUUM! DA DA DA DUUUUUM!
Brilliant. I’m certain Lisa isn’t quite so enamoured as she was the first fifteen times I did it.
Right now I’m registering and installing the software that came with my camera. It’s probably not worth the install but my computer is so application-light that I might as well do it anyway. it makes me feel as though I’m actually using the system as something other than Firefox-in-a-box through which I get my daily dose of “news”. Today’s “news”, of course, is that a fuck-and-tell blogger with associated book and t.v. deal has revealed her identity to prevent being outed by the Daily Mail.
It’s a laudable aim, I suppose, but that won’t really stop all the students in her department looking at her funny and swapping comments about being “well-travelled” and/or the possession of physiological features that resemble the top end of a wellington boot.
Next week, I suppose, she’ll be telling the papers about how telling the papers has affected her life or some other shit that supposedly eases her conscience and increases understanding but really just pads out her bank balance a little more and makes everyone around her increasing discomfited.
Back on the software thing, I’ve just clicked on my fourth licence agreement during this install. That can’t be right, can it? Four licences for one program…or maybe it’s a bundle of programs. They’re taking long enough to get on the system. I should’ve just stuck with MS paint. That’s about my level.
One save draft and a reboot later, and I’m uploading images to Flickr. Woo, and indeed, yay. While that interminable process grinds away, I should probably go over what Alistair got me for my birthday. First up, a bottle of Glengoyne 10 y.o. single malt, which is nice, although I haven’t tasted it yet. We had a cocktail and a bottle of wine with dinner at Alistair’s on Saturday night and I’m such a lightweight that I had to stop drinking right after dinner to make sure I’d be fit to drive the next day. It’s not something to be really proud of, that I just can’t drink beyond a certain point anymore, but it’s better that I’m upfront about it. Not vomiting for the entire day afterwards is a reward in itself.
He also bought me some books: The Stuff of Thought by Steve Pinker, Proust and the Squid by Maryanne Wolf, The Elements of Style by Strunk Jr. and White, and a digital photography book. The last one I’m not going to link due to me encountering a vicious dislike of the author on opening the book. He spends a good five pages right at the start promoting his other books, website, newsletter, promotions, etc, and therefore really doesn’t need any help from this quarter.
Hrm. 65% uploaded. What else can I talk about?
Doctor Who, oh yes. Spoilers after the jump.
It was the Waters of Mars episode last night, which was wholly ruined by the congratulatory enthusiasm with which the BBC hyped the shit out of it. Ohhhh, it’s so intense, especially the last ten minutes, and it’s not the monsters, it’s the Doctor that’s the scariest part.
Aye, right. It was a fairly standard setup of claustrophobia horror. Everyone’s trapped in an essentially inescapable environment while a malevolent forces picks people off one by one, in this case infecting them and turning them against the others. On that front, it was fine. The fact that we’re told that everyone dies and the Doctor can do nothing was surprising early on, but I thought it turned out to be pretty effective. You can see he’s getting ideas, he’s working out how he’d save the day, how he’d control the situation. It’s that he can’t that makes it dramatic. I really, really wanted to see the episode end out with him just trudging away from the station, listening to the sounds of them dying one by one; the panic, the fear, the hopelessness of it. Steffi and Ed’s deaths were just right, as I could see it. The little tech-controller dude got short-changed by having to act out a scene plagiarised from 28 Days Later, but I could forgive that. In my head it was the opposite of the Doctor Dances (Everyone lives!). Rocks fall, everyone dies, and one of the most powerful beings in the Universe cannot stop it.
Then we have the turnaround, where the Doctor goes back, and the whole thing just fails. I know they’re bringing back the Master for the finale, but it was too much of a jump to have the Doctor suddenly decide that megalomania is quite the palatable dish. Yes, yes, it parallels the Master and suggests how easy it would be to flip from good Time Lord to evil Time Lord, but it was just too much to swallow in a single bite.
In today’s pictures I will be illustrating what I look like when I talk. I wave my hands around like a mad bastard and pull all sorts of faces. It does me no good at interviews and presentations, and sadly I’m not nearly funny enough for stand-up comedy.
Here’s me trying to think of something to say. I’m probably going “Ehhhhhhhh” really loudly at the same time. I do that a lot. It’s not very nice and, again, makes me useless at conversation, but I do it all the same.
Here’s my brother, hiding behind a mug because I took the camera off of him.