2011 — 5 May: Thursday

In between sticking new keytops onto one of my keyboards1 I found time for a couple of episodes of Carl Sagan's "Cosmos". I missed most of this when it was first shown, but have to say the information density is not particularly high (even for 1980). Still, a remarkable piece of science popularisation, so let's not judge it too harshly. I also re-watched "Hancock" and now realise that Mike must have bought the "special, unrated" version as there was an early scene in his version that brought to mind a neat little Larry Niven speculation on the sex life of Superman :-)

On that note, time (00:52) for some sleep. G'night.

Remember "Dune"?

If so, you'll recall the arid desert landscape of Arrakis, and (if you saw the David Lynch film) the phrase "I see plans within plans".2 Well, two years before that film, we had our very own version of Arrakis. Here, I can offer you "wheel(barrow)s within wheel(barrow)s":

Christa and Peter in 1982

Time (09:51) for a spot of breakfast, methinks.

Steeped as I was...

... after my dip into "Cosmos" last night in the woeful depths of our ignorance, this assertion strikes me as more than somewhat inane. Source and snippet:

... the universe is a "relatively simple system," compared, say, to a chaotic system like a human body — and thus "predicting the future is actually a feasible task," even "for ridiculously long time periods."

Sean Carroll, quoted by Graeme Wood in Boston Globe

Of course, what do I know? I'm not a theoretical cosmologist from CalTech. Nor a disciple of Hari Seldon :-)

Exhausted after the effort of walking down to cast my non-AV vote for the AV referendum, and banter with a Mr Postie taking a ciggie break (Do you ever get fed up with the endless flow of mail? Oh, yes!) I'm now gently recovering with a late lemonses nectarine, a hot cuppa, some cool music ("Red, Hot, and Blue"), and the icy realisation that the best way of turning my iMac into something useful may yet prove to be a complete re-installation, though not necessarily with OS X. I must admit, my lip curled as I read the specs of their latest quad-core machines. Oops. That's my morning gone.

If there's a...

... finer solo improvised jazz piano concert than the one played by Keith Jarrett in Köln in 1975 I've yet to hear it.3 My ancient CD omits the short "encore" that was on side four of the original vinyl but is an otherwise perfect accompaniment to my prawn salad lunch. And here's Mr Postie's offering, too:


Now, what would you say to another cuppa, Mrs Landingham? I'd say "About time, too!" [Pause] Unwicked Uncle ERNIE has it in mind to send me a £25 cheque some time this month. Jolly good.


Were I my wife, I might be tempted to mutter "Sugar" or even "Bovril". Although I can only take a certain amount of Spike Lee's damning indictment of the federal (non)response to Hurricane Katrina in any one sitting, I've watched enough tonight for my intended evening icecream treat to melt completely. Yuk. In other domestic administrivia, having been emailed by my newest energy supplier I've just spent a happy few minutes (I jest) looking for the details needed to let me login and supply my gas and electricity meter readings. I've now set up a direct debit in hopes that I can forget about this stuff again. That's one of my core skills.

If I had time to set up a system and get organised, think how much time I'd save. But I'm retired, so (as Brian has recently discovered) I don't actually have any time. Still, at least I now know where my driving licence paper counterpart is. And my water supply insurance paperwork. Not to mention my council tax demand :-)



1  A fiddly job involving a scalpel and needing a steady hand.
2  Spoken during the visit by the third stage Guild Navigator to the Emperor.
3  "One who knows" has just recommended I try Brad Mehldau and/or Gwilym Simcock. Thanks, Tom! Maybe as a treat after next week's visit to Dr Fang?