2007 — 18 Mar: I (still) need a system

You might think, after 134 days of retirement, I'd have developed some sort of system, or even a routine. No chance, it seems. I remain as capable of mislaying stuff as ever. For example, within the last week or so (notice how Heisenberg creeps gently in, as it were) I know perfectly well I recorded the BBC Radio 4 play "Accolades" by Christopher William Hill as it featured what was the last radio performance by the late Ian Richardson. I have some considerable evidence of this. For a start, I remember it being a wickedly funny dissection of the even later AL Rowse. Secondly, I carefully clipped the description of it from the Radio Times to file (hah! some joke) alongside the physical recording, and I'm staring at the clipping while I type.

There's just one minor detail wrong, as it were. The actual minidisc is already missing in action somewhere up here in the study. (Or, at least, I hope it is — if it's anywhere else in the house all bets are off, trust me.)

Let me offer a miniaturised view of just what sort of morass lies, as it were, behind that simple statement "in the study":

Exhibit A: the view of the right hand wall looking towards the skylight:

To the skylight

Exhibit B: the view under the skylight:

Under the skylight

Exhibit C: the view of the same wall looking towards the window at the far end:

From the skylight

And that's literally less than half of the potential hiding places.

Happy Birthday down under department

Greetings, young sister-in-law Lis. Never mind; it's only another year after all.

And while I'm vaguely addressing the Antipodes, let alone on the subject of people named Elisabeth/Elizabeth1: we both greatly enjoyed watching Helen Mirren in The Queen by Stephen Frears. So that's another endorsement for you, Ian. Three excellent DVDs within the course of a week; what's the world coming to?

Three video recorders will come in handy one day...

Tonight, actually. Humax tuner #1 is busily watching and recording a string of BBC4 programmes about the London Underground2 as I type — including the one about the design of Harry Beck's magnificent map of the system. Humax tuner #2, meanwhile, is set to BBC2, and I will simply press the "record" button on the Panasonic PVR in 45 minutes from now to start it recording Part 2 of "The Trap". That leaves me free to watch ITV's new production of Jane Austen's Mansfield Park on the Pioneer PVR, with one digit poised over the "Pause" button to obliterate all the ads that will not have been added for my viewing enjoyment.

Try doing that without three recorders. (Granted, I could have used the HP Media PC for an extra recording, but let's not get carried away.) But why do we go for weeks on end with a paltry diet of worthwhile stuff and then get overdosed in a single evening? Riddle me that.

No comment department

Hah! Bill Gates has just refused to comment on the Mac ads during a phone interview on NPR. Excellent!

Day 135  


1  The Queen, of course, is not a subject!
2  "The London Underground is not a political movement, Otto. I've checked!"