2009 — 11 March: Wednesday

Well, it's 00:55 and well past time for tonight's picture of Christa. "Somewhere in Germany" as the phrase goes. I'm pretty sure this was in the North, and in the summer of 1977 when I was taking a break from a freelance book I was writing for ICL (during my holiday, mad fool that I was):

Christa in Germany, mid-1977?

She would have watched tonight in some bemusement my struggles with a "hung" Blu-ray player.1 Perhaps I do need that firmware upgrade after all? She would probably have been less upset than me at Junior's casual news that "the antibiotics have nailed the bronchitis", too. Kids!

Right; I'm off to bed. G'night.

The four "eyes"

Immediate, indiscreet, intimate, and indecipherable. Gyles Brandreth's rules (worked out with Alan Clark) for the best political diaries. Well, I must say I enjoyed most of Alan Clark's diaries. It's 08:50 and the second cuppa is already now cooling. The sun's out, I've been up for over an hour, and must remember to nip out for a birthday card to accompany tonight's little bash. There's some foody shopping needed, too. But not before breakfast. I've also arranged the satellite dish re-positioning and re-plumbing exercise for next week (ahead of the great Rowridge re-tuning2 exercise). I suspect I shall no longer have much need for Freeview terrestrial digital TV other than as another source of radio.

Advance notice...

... that, after 18 months with the present Texas-based ISP, molehole.org will shortly once again be upping sticks and moving to another ISP. (The intention is to distance ourselves from a known, and black-listed, email spammer on a nearby server — it's been causing Junior some distress with several of the commercial websites that he's set up for various people.) As Junior says on his blog "This will undoubtedly involve a bit of downtime/DNS-mismatchery, but hopefully this will be confined to the weekend".

We shall see. (I note from his "posh" CV that he is unaware of the difference between the verb and noun forms of "license/licence". Should I tell him?)


The BBC tells me that my foody shop chain (JLP) has seen profits drop by 26%. Their latest credit card statement reminds me that they allow themselves to charge an outrageous 23.9% effective APR on cash advances. The Bank of England base rate is now 0.5%. Is it any wonder I don't understand the dark science? Oh well. Time (11:14) to re-hit the shops — I'm back from the birthday card expotition and food stuff. Now for the more fun part.

Back, fed, and watered. It's 15:21, and I shall now start thinking about the size of the slice of humble pie I am considering extending to Brack in NZ. I blame one of the two books I picked up in Borders a couple of hours ago:


You see, although I bought my iMac two years ago, just for fun in my new state of retirement, many many things have since conspired to stop me doing more than gently scratching the surface of its capability. I suspect that is now (finally) going to change. Apart from getting the rest of my life back on to a form of even keel, I've no intention of further enriching the MicroSpit empire, and I'm still not quite convinced that Linux is all it should be. Though it's probably all it needs to be for my use of it on the dinky HP Media PC that I've now3 sited next to the A/V system downstairs.



1  Having reached the half-way point (Lizzy's rejection of Darcy's marriage proposal) I (perhaps foolishly) ventured off the highway of Pride and Prejudice and on to the uncharted back road that is its "High Definition setup" section... The player hung and had to be, as it were, three-finger saluted.
2  My technophile chum Brian tells me that this (temporary) reassignment of channel numbers is going to mean that the BBC multiplex will be on Channel 37. Since local antennae are Band A, and that used to stop at Channel 35, 28-year-old aerials such as mine may well roll-off the Channel 37 signal. And since Technology Towers is in a bit of a dip, the last thing I need is any further diminution of my signal (particularly as the BBC constitutes the vast majority of my broadcast viewing and listening).
3  Mind you, having drooled discreetly over the new Mac Mini and its same-sized terabyte disk drive in the Apple store in West Quay, even that might change. I can blame Junior for sparking that particular thought if necessary.