2013 — 4 March: Monday

There was a leisurely start to my day on this bright and sunny morning, and certainly no rush to start on this external diary.1 As revealed by El Reg the bad guys were attacking the Cloudfare web service that is wrapped around 'molehole' and the defensive measures they took turned out to be counter-productive. I got caught for a while in the cross-fire.

While BBC Radio 3 plays...

... (I very much hope) the entire "Firebird" (albeit, only the suite) conducted by Stravinsky with the Philharmonic Symphony Orchestra of New York and recorded at Carnegie Hall one day before Big Bro was born, I can recount my didactic morning. I was responding to a request for my thoughts on replacing an elderly (six years) and ailing laptop PC from my friend Carol, also in New York. You can see what I said, here.

The Stravinsky was fine; but then it always is. Time for my next cuppa.

It's entirely possible...

... that some portion of my morning sluggishness could be attributable to the previous evening's video binge, I suppose. I finished watching Season #2 of "Dead like me" and am left (precisely as I was at the end of "Carnivale") wishing for more while knowing that's all there is. Why can't TV all be as good as this?


The memory of lunch is fading, the sun shines on, I've examined the five separate pieces of snailmail today's Postie brought me from my newest financial institution, deleted the most recent pair of text messages from the same outfit — they are over-communicating their progress on this account transfer to an almost ludicrous degree — and even pondered why IBM Pensions have sent me a "pay slip" until I realised it's a year since the last one. (Wonder where I put that?)

In fact, it's arrived in nice time to use as a "proof of current address" when I trot along to the two-hour financial review that I cheerfully expect to take no more than 15 minutes next week. I intend to repeat my mantra "cash-poor, time-rich" to my reviewer as often as needed for it to sink in. I've already told his colleague how little planning I do these days. But they are very young, and don't yet have my perspective.2 One of the items they'd like me to bring with me is my budget. I wonder if they know my friend Wilkins Micawber? :-)

It's also entirely possible...

... that the one book I have about J Edgar Hoover (Curt Gentry's heavyweight 1991 tome, subtitled "The man and his secrets") is enough to be going on with, without adding "The FBI's Obscene File" to the overburdened shelves. But there's an interesting, well-written book review and a reminder of an insightful aside from Tom Lehrer. Source and snippet:

This is indicative of the ideological geography of the time, when New York's reputation was unrivalled as a den of iniquity and pinko dubiousness; with typical acuity, Tom Lehrer indicated that this was both a matter of dismay or pride, depending on where you came from: "I find that if you take the various popular song forms to their logical extremes, you can arrive at almost anything from the ridiculous to the obscene — or, as they say in New York, sophisticated." This is cultural warfare, but it is both cold and soft as ice cream; obscenity remains a slippery question, because it appears to suit everybody that it remain so.

Michael Hinds in Dublin Review of Books


This looks like much more fun! Nice hands-off video, too. (Link.)



1  Is there ever?
2  I could wish I didn't have my perspective as well, but you play the cards you're dealt in this strange Game of Life.