2007 — 1 Mar: did you say "Rabbits"?

On this day ("St. David's Day") twiddly-umpty years ago I was to be found nervously sitting my eleven-plus grammar school entrance exam, in a large room with about three fellow victims. I was ten and actually sitting something called the "prelim" because I was taking the exam a year early. Since I was already attending the first year of the grammar school for which it was a mandatory pre-req, I assume I did well enough for them to keep me on,1 as it were.

I'd skipped a year of Junior school two years earlier, after doing well in their entrance exam. This is why there's a large gap in my knowledge of the Vikings, as our friends in the North loomed large as a project during the year that I omitted!

Junior kept up the family tradition by getting his A* Maths GCSE two years early. (He went on to get another nine GCSEs [six more A* and three A] and four A levels [two As, two Bs] which cost me a small fortune in carefully-negotiated incentive awards!) Still, when he's a Captain of Industry, perhaps he'll support me in my dotage?2

Hypothetically speaking department

Just got my first email newsletter3 from that nice Mr Dennis' Mac User magazine empire. This one-line précis from it (in contrast to the web page in the quoted link) seemed to suggest something may be afoot:

The Street investigates the likely impact of serious implication in the sock options probe

Nik Rawlinson, in "What would happen to Apple if Jobs stepped down?"

Out on "Safari"

No, not another trip to the shops. Though we shall whizz out for a burst of fresh air and exercise in the gaps between the showers.


It's just that I've decided to make Firefox my default web browser on the iMac to help reduce the cognitive dissonance 'twixt Mac and PC. The iMac's native Safari browser (about which questions have been asked regarding its [lack of] speediness in the presence of certain Adobe applications, oddly) has accordingly been banished to wherever stuff goes when I evict it from the Dock. (And, no, I don't know where that is, though Safari's icon is still in the "Applications" folder for reloading if need be.)

The (Title) Deed is done

My Lady from the Land Registry (who evidently has access to a nifty A3 colour copier) has proved a lot faster (and more reliable) than my Bank. She has now supplied certified copies of the Title4 Deeds, so it's time to start the process of getting her fee refunded from my Bank!

Day 118  


1  It was a fee-paying school; perhaps I squeaked in as a revenue stream.
2  Said dotage will be cutting in any day now if I have to read many more computer manuals. For example, I am idly browsing the chapter on "Searching with Grep" in the TextWrangler manual, page 162, when I am brought up short by the suggestion that the pattern:
matches an unlimited number of substrings that either consist of non-digits, or digits enclosed in <>, followed by either ! or ? So far, so good. And when it matches, it "runs quickly". But if left to run on its own (and what else would one do?) it "might take years" before it finally fails. The authors, whom I find I admire immensely, expand: "We are not sure, frankly, because much like determining how many licks it takes to get to the center of a Tootsie Pop, [my mind boggles: is this a slang phrase for Dustin Hoffman?] we do not feel like waiting long enough to find out." Still, thank goodness the cure is the simple if subtle:
3  As it's dated "Friday 23rd February" the word news may not be quite the right one.
4  So now I can remind myself that in 1981 (as a wide-eyed innocent IBM "experienced hire") I bought this new, four-bedroom detached bijou residence for the bargain price of £I'd-better-not-say. And that's not including the amazing variety of relocation expenses disbursed to the various parasites involved seemingly endlessly throughout the entire horrible process. These totted up to another £I'd-better-not-say, all due for repaying had I left IBM within my first year. Talk about golden handcuffs!