2011 — 25 May: Wednesday

I must have mislaid the round tuit1 I would have needed yesterday for sorting out my next family photo. Since it's now 07:59 and I'm sitting peacefully here with fresh cuppa at hand and no domestic tasks clamouring for attention (that I choose to be aware of) let's fire up the flux capacitor and travel back to the summer of 1982. Whenever Christa's parents came over here from Germany photos were taken to help keep memories fresh (quite understandably, of course).

The Beckers in 1982

Naturally, Peter didn't always see eye to eye with his Mum on the need to stick around while Dad fiddled with the Pentax. I (almost) managed to capture the mischievous grin on his face as he made his escape on this occasion.

Half a minute...

... I thought I'd overlooked a small lump of Asda goodness yesterday: "Arthur" — a film I've never actually watched in its entirety.

DVD and book

Though my personal favourite2 Liza Minelli film is Alan Pakula's 1969 directorial debut "Pookie", aka "The sterile cuckoo", from the amazing 1965 John Nichols novel. (My battered copy — picked up in 1969 — cost me 1/9d in 'old' money.) But just try getting this wonderful film on DVD. Nichols went on to write a Vietnam-legacy novel "American Blood" that was vastly different. (And a casual scan suggests it's fled my shelves, too, though not my data base.)

It's a sunny morning, still, at 09:57 and I shall quickly nip out for a few supplies before conveying my main co-pilot over to the biker café for a spot of brunch. We know how to live round here, you know. [Pause] If, as I'm now doing on my return, one eats half a grapefruit for one's "lemonses" break, does that turn it into one's "grapefruitses" break? Of course, the question may be easier if you realise "lemonses" was family code for "elevenses"... Not that it's 11 o'clock quite yet.

It's a good job...

... I remain so blissfully ignorant about video technology. Otherwise, I might be inclined to be a little scornful about the BBC's curious halfway-house approach to 1080p hi-def TV on the limited-bandwidth terrestrial digital system, not to mention their curious choices of aspect ratio. (Link.)

I see Paul Nahin's fabulous (and fabulously expensive) book "Time machines" has finally metamorphosed into a shorter, more affordable paperback titled "Time travel". Pity I can't nip back in time and warn myself not to bother with the first two hardback editions,3 thus saving myself £66-50. Dr Nahin is extremely keen on lengthy, discursive, footnotes. They constitute nearly half of the first edition.

The choice of tomorrow...

... for our next walk may yet turn out to have been a mistake. I'm just back from Loomies and have snaffled a nectarine for my "pud" — the biker café isn't big on puds, healthy or otherwise. The police mobile speed traps were much in evidence, too. But I was strictly legal. It's 14:02 and the sun shines on.

Thanks, Mr Postie

That early Jeremy Irons film (directed by the chap who made "Deep End" back in 1970) I first saw on TV long before I had my first VCR has just turned up:


Meanwhile — after a phone call from my new best friend Michael W, a Novatechnician — I've just nipped down to Cosham and back to collect a chastened Blackbeast komplete mit its replaced memory module. All shall now, once again, be PC bliss hereabouts, I don't doubt. When I've gently re-introduced it to the network and added the Buffalo Terastation NAS, that is. In a series of careful, baby steps. First things first, Mrs Landingham, starting with a cuppa tea and a ginger nut. It's 17:19 and has so far been a glorious day without too much driving stupidity during my 88 miles. This is good.



1  Not for the first time; nor the last, I expect.
2  Bob Fosse's "Cabaret" is #2, of course.
3  I bought the first edition in Cambridge in August 1993 for a mere £40 and the expanded second edition more locally in February 1999 with the two SF novels (Sparrow and Children of God) by Mary Doria Russell. The two novels were not a significantly easier read than the more technical book.