Aug. 15th, 2009 08:14 pm
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There are some cities you visit once and think, "Yeah, I could live here." That's how I felt the moment I stepped off the platform of Queen Street station and ventured into that curious mixture of Gilded Age and postmodern architecture. Their tube system is called the Clockwork Orange (because it's orange and goes round in a circle), which gives you a clue as to the local sense of humour. It's also by far the friendliest city we've been in, in a long time. Every time we were attempting to go someplace (or find a bus to take us someplace) a helpful stranger would appear to untangle us.

Many thanks to the lovely [ profile] vorvolaka for leading us on a mini-tour about the city before a delicious luncheon at Brodie's restaurant, where I got to experience a right and proper haggis for the first time, as well as for some very excellent
conversation. Good times, indeed!
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Today we went to Scotland's Museum of Communication in Burntisland, Fife. The [ profile] bellabelball has posted an
excellent review of it here.
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Made it to Carlisle, where we're spending the night in a pub after seeing Hadrian's wall in the rain, as everyone should. Visited/were ejected from Carlisle Cathedral. Also, made a wrong turn on our return journey from the wall and ended up briefly at some clandestine military site (it was either that or a very strange farm without crops or animals but plenty of video surveillance). All in all, a fun day! Off to Kirkcaldy tomorrow.
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Our hotel in manchester... all the comforts of homel
Geeks on holiday

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Enormous garish airline logo... check!

UK Bound

Aug. 6th, 2009 09:17 pm
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Flight is departing in just over an hour. Have already set. my watch to BST.

Logan Airport is quiet as a tomb... the economy has really hit summer travel hard. Getting through security took almost no time at all. Such a difference from last year!
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Magic 8-BallŪ
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lj-mood: dry clean only

Look, I know I do moan an awful lot about the weather here in the greater
paradise area, but come on, this is just ridiculous.

wash, rinse, repeat... )

The same storm has been sitting off our coast for well on a week now, spinning in place, pummelling the crap out of us with the same rain day in and day out. It's like a fucking meteorological Groundhog Day over here. It would be quite mesmerising if it weren't so off-pissing.

Okay, Mother Nature we give up.. Whatever it was we did to deserve this, we're sorry. Can we please have our sun back??
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In rough order of fluency:
  1. English
  2. German
  3. Mathematics, the language of love
  4. That kind of language
  5. Latin (Classical)
  6. The only language some people understand
  7. "American" English
  8. Newspeak, Eleventh Edition
  9. Latin (Pig)
  10. Occasional language, adult concepts
  11. Boston Sign Language
  12. Your crazy moon language
  13. Body language
  14. Reverse Polish
  15. Double Dutch
  16. The Secret Language of Birds

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New Wave was the soundtrack to my teenage years. The first record album I ever bought with my own money was the B-52s first album (because it had "Rock Lobster" on it and I loved that song so hard). They and DEVO and my distant cousin Annie basically saved my brain from the mindless pap that was popular music in general in the early 80s. (Oh and Frank Zappa of course, but let's face it, that man was a genius and transcended all concept of musical category, past, present or future).

About the time that R.E.M. came along was when I all but threw my radio out the window. Dance music had been replaced by Angst music, and except for bands like TMBG which were totally off the grid anyway, it had just stopped being fun. The notion that music should be for lifting your spirit, not pushing you ever deeper into despair, seemed a permanent casualty of the "alternative" music revolution.

But now a group of youngsters in Seattle whose births missed the end of New Wave by at least ten years have a radio show called "Save the Wave" dedicated to a revival of sorts (since we Gen-X'ers are apparently too lame and cynical to revive our own goddamned music). The best part (for those of us not living in Seattle) is that the show is also streamed over the internet. See this post which has all the juicy details.

Many thanks to [ profile] rmd for alerting me to this extreme awesomeness.

The biggest and final nut-ball kick you ever receive to your illusion that you can still be "cool" is when you start hearing the music of your adolescence on the "oldies" stations. Hand me my walker, nurse, I'm just gonna amble my shrivelled incontinence up to the top of Mt Loser and hurl myself into oblivion along with what remains of my shattered self-image.
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Sat in a mile-long traffic jam this morning due to a boat parked in the middle of the road. I'm guessing it was broken down, but maybe it had just run out of wind. I didn't see T-Pain anywhere; only some very confused looking police.
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Recommended, but with reservations. The acting is incredible and the dialogue is witty and at times downright hilarious. There are plenty of references to original series episodes and films.

That said, the plot is truly atrocious (groan factor twelve), and the "science" is at cartoon level or worse. Now, I can forgive bad science in service of a good plot, and I can forgive a bad plot if the movie is otherwise fun and exciting, and doesn't take itself too seriously. Trouble is, somewhere in the second hour the film stopped being just a fun ride and started to want to make a Statement (but hadn't quite worked out about what). That's when I started shifting in my seat and thinking a nap might be nice.

Fortunately, what the film lacks in intelligence and plot, it makes up for by being short.

blipvert's rating: ★★★☆☆
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Cool and overcast, with a chance of rain.
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At the Reading IMAX, waiting for them to begin seating. Star Trek FTW! Damned if I'm not as giddy as a schoolgirl right now.

And I'm not the only one. This place is ROCKING.

How do you know when you're queueing for a serious geek film? There are people sitting on the floor quietly reading amidst all the din and chatter and general mayhem. Complete strangers are engaging in thoughtful debate on Old Trek vs New Trek, and the merits of Enterprise.

Ah, they're starting to let people in, slowly, and in stages. Trying to avoid a stampede. Wise move... this place could explode at any moment.
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This is brilliant!

so sad

Mar. 18th, 2009 10:12 pm
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Natasha Richardson dead from skiing injuries.

She was only 45.


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