2008 — 8 December: Monday

Tonight's picture of Christa shows her at work on the bog garden on 26th September 2007, at 16:04 to be precise. I must admit, I haven't wielded the garden fork since then, though I'm pretty sure I now know where to find it:

Christa and the bog garden, September 2007

Must nip out on another supplies run later today. Further deep joy. G'night, at 00:09 or so.

Less "deep joy", more "deep frost"

Shopping is on hold for a while. Cuppa first, while I let the ambient crawl upward. Mind you (as of 09:40) it's "only" -1.5C on the front porch. Big Bro's unsubtle travel propaganda overnight:

Sounds rather cold and 'orrible over there. Frosts and the like. Brrr! I would rather lie relaxing in our inflatable boat, in the pool, with a cold Corona and slice of lime. Say Hi to daughter #1 who we presume is headed to warmer climes at the end of this week.


I might just keep #1 for Christmas good cheer! I thought a Corona was a cigar (or, further back, sickly sweet lemonade).

Since when? I pay my licence fee!

Not what I expect to see:

Glow indeed

Children in need... dept.

Not the recent fund-raising; an article and the comments it's attracting, including this:

Wasn't it refreshing to witness those Indian government ministers resigning? When was the last time a British government cabinet minister resigned, citing his/her having proven a complete tit at the job as the reason?
Also, when will the people realise that limiting the interview process for these very important jobs, requiring very specialised skills, to a handful of cronies, selected from a larger pool of 300-odd people, who were picked in two or three horse races, up and down the country, by individuals who believe party politics makes for great democracy, for being the better talker (no pun or offence meant, Mr Ed), is not the best way to go about it?

"Billplasterer" in The Guardian

There's a further cogent comment on what are sometimes known as key indicators: "so many have had perverse effects, incentivising entirely the wrong actions and performance" — exactly so. People working within a system pay attention to what's being measured... after all, surely "the bosses" wouldn't want it measured if it wasn't important?

Speaking of bosses...

Fascinating to listen to Carly Fiorina and her opinions. First time I've actually heard the one-time head of HP. And I hadn't realised she'd been McCain's economic advisor. Oh well, better load some breakfast, I guess. Good grief — it's 10:38 — this won't do at all!

Somebody tell me this is satire.

The round goes ever on... dept.

As I remarked to young Roger, on meeting him in the Waitrose car park... "the endless round. Somebody keeps eating all the food I keep buying." Between that and the trip down to Sainsbury's to (try to) snaffle some well-fired bread, and Lidl for another bar of Christa's favourite chocolate (consumed by me, of course) it's 13:45 before I decant the slices of dead pig into the oven to get them all hot and bothered. Still, the barometer is quite high (though showing signs of drooping) and the sun is quite shiny (though showing signs of drooping) so I think I'm nearly set for an afternoon tea adventure. Late lunch first, though, before thirst.

To everything there is a season...

Say "farewell," therefore, to last year's fine cognac brandy butter — or what was left of it — or whatever it had metamorphosed into. I declined to lift the lid, just in case something leapt out and bit me.

And, my word, isn't it just a bit of a downer when it gets so dark so early? It's now 16:37 and the house is in full lights-on mode. Sir Harold's place provided the Assam and Peter the company. I shall now resume battle with the external USB sound card.

This is extremely aggravating. Last week I successfully used "Audacity" to turn one track from one of my minidiscs into a .wav file, and thence to an mp3 that I emailed to a couple of chums who'd appreciate it (and, what's more, I did this via the SP/DIF so there was no trace of digital hash on the resulting sound). But can I now duplicate this trivial task? Take a wild guess! I've taken a break, stuffed my face, and checked (and re-checked) all the inter-connects. It's now 19:38 and, were I not already, I think I'd be going mad. I don't ever remember it being this difficult...1

Signal is going in. Signal is apparently being recorded. Disk space is being eaten up at about the right rate of knots, given the chosen sample rate. But nary an audible peep. (This is on the Gateway re-installed XP Home system, by the way. The repaired XP Pro on the bigger of the two HP MPCs is playing soothing sounds to me as I type.) I may just have to relocate to the living room and try out the Ubuntu box (though I know, on that one, I'm only getting analogue audio I/O at the moment). Failing that (this will make Brack laugh) I could always use the "just plug it in and it works" iMac, I guess. But that's at the other end of the study away from any hi-fi.



1  Not even the two weeks I spent, full-time, in an audio recording studio editing audio training tapes that I'd recorded (back in 1975) to accompany my first book, the ICL 1900 Series PLAN "Independent Study Course" I mentioned here.