2007 — 4 May: I've got a bad feeling about this, Luke

The rate at which the Deathstar is currently downloading — I assume — a freshly-cooked batch of security updates bodes ill. Thing is, should I put my brand new copy of Photoshop Elements 5 on the system before, or after, the inevitable disruption? Hah! While I might like nothing more than the opportunity to download and install 3.7MB of "Windows Defender" definition update (KB915597) it seems "there is a problem with my system" that is preventing this from happening. What a heart-warming start to the computing part of my daily round. Not to worry...

All sorted: uninstall existing Defender, download and install new version (after first installing the "Genuine Windows Validation" plug-in into my Firefox browser), download latest definitions, perform quick scan, confirm with Windows Update site that all is now blissful hunky-doryness. What an unproductive time.

Tin bashing

As soon as the last instalment of the William Donaldson story is safely captured, I shall be going out, and across the road, to re-enact some scenes from my youthful apprenticeship. The neighbour's Charlee's front cowl is now a lot straighter and re-attached rather more firmly following yesterday's unfortunate kerb-crawling incident (yes, I did have to drill out three sets of pop rivets before resorting to cable ties — so what?). And the new indicator switch is installed after a degree of floor-grovelling contortion I didn't realise I was still capable of. Soup and a sandwich, and off he goes ready for the Midlands show this weekend.

Time's Wing-ed chariot

En passant do you realise the IRA's Brighton bomb attack was 23 years ago? (It was 12th October, the eve of Thatcher's birthday.) Amazing what you can learn from the BBC. I gather there's a commemorative "Falklands Arch" in the offing, too, with a speech by the great what's her name. Regarding the former bombshell, here's a quotation from her speech1 writer, the late playwright Ronald Millar, on that occasion.

Keith Joseph, immaculate in a Noël Coward dressing gown over his silk pyjamas, was the only one, so far as I could see, who had remembered his red Cabinet despatch box. He had been discovered sitting on it on the promenade immediately opposite the hotel staring calmly out to sea, which I thought was intellectual, sophisticated and entirely apropos for a Fellow of All Souls...

Ronald Millar

Alan Clark's diary entry (by contrast) merely recalled Sir Keith "wandering around in a burgundy dressing gown."

Perhaps it's true that, as fictional doctor Gregory House puts it: "Everybody lies."

Speaking of which, I learn from the ever-reliable Ansible that a James Rosen of Fox News was not afraid to put the boot into a safely dead political foe [Kurt Vonnegut]: "His life's work, 14 novels, short stories, plays, essays, left wing screeds, and random musings was much too quirky, too filled with scatological humor, cosmic coincidences, and self admitted sci-fi mumbo jumbo for him to have enjoyed stately induction into the great pantheon of American writers." What a comfort Fox News must be to the intelligentsia.

It's Friday. Been shopping?

Mr Amazon's morning mail drop of Photoshop 5 Elements accounts for most of the value, and was accompanied by "The Missing Manual" for it by Barbara Brundage. I think this series is a heck of a lot classier than the "... for Dummies" brand. Then Mr Postie dropped off The King and "Sussex Stationers" (whom I must now train myself to call "British Bookshops & Stationers") yielded:

Day 182  


1  Come on! You didn't think she wrote her own, surely?