2016 — 21 July: Thursday

I'm not entirely surprised to hear, this morning, that Zwemmers actually closed down in 2004. "Charing Cross Road ain't what it used to be, guv", says my informant1 — many of my own "oversize" purchases from them now sit arrayed along one wall of the books warehouse, but are "floor-standing" to obviate the need for even stronger shelving.

Big Bro...

... not only approved my selection of a Canon EOS 80D body but was cheeky enough to suggest I buy two, shipping one of them VAT-free down to him in NZ. I would have thought the damage done to Sterling's exchange rate by the Brexit fallout would have shifted the balance in favour of him buying two and shipping me one instead! We shall see, Bro.

Today's adventure...

... in pleasantly cooler weather (I hope) will be a lunchdate somewhere yet to be decided. It got sufficiently hot yesterday that I removed the casing of my Rotel A/V pre-amp to improve its convective cooling...

Rotel exposed

... though doing so is probably not something I'd recommend unless / until one is an "empty-nester", to be honest! Though quite why my pre-amp gets so much hotter in operation than its sibling — the 250 watt stereo Rotel power amp — puzzles me. The power amp being a Class D device may have some bearing on the answer.


... seems to be an alien concept to some bankers:

HSBC alleged behaviour

This particular outfit being the one that allowed themselves 24 hours to clear cash that I paid in, and thus rendered me liable (in their opinion) to an interest charge on a one-day overdraft. I left them in my usual state of high dudgeon!

And some massive...

... spending projects in the UK — although viewed as insane, it seems — enjoy an apparently unstoppable zombie life of their own:


I have politely resisted...

... the invitation to deal with a neighbour's "dead in the water" Windows PC this morning, not least because I have only bad experiences of tinkering with Dell kit. Power goes in. Nothing comes out. Time to send in the PC repair shop Marines.

I now know what happens...

... when the SD card is removed from my Mazda's SatNav system — it reverts to a simple (but quite useful) compass heading display that also tells me latitude, longitude and elevation (41 feet here) above sea level. The card is being fed refreshed map data (to, I believe, the November 2015 level) courtesy of Cthulhu's Windows system. (BlackBeast doesn't "do" Windows. And Mazda's update toolbox doesn't "do" Linux, though I'm willing to bet their SatNav box does.)

However, it takes so long I've given up waiting and returned to base. Quite how I navigated all the way across the village from Dr Frankenstein's Linux Lab without the map display is anybody's guess.

A wag suggests...

... that, instead of renewing the Trident nuclear missile submarine system — and I note HMS Ambush collided with a merchant vessel in the Med despite its awesome reverse parking beeper system — we should simply stuff £1,000,000 into 30,000 brown envelopes and hand them over to the 30,000 workers whose jobs "depend" on Trident. That saves enough to pay for the other three zombies. And expand Gatwick, too, for that matter. Only two downsides, in my view:

(Guess who's started re-watching episodes of "Yes, Minister"?)



1  Remembering, like me, "wandering in and emerging with an unexpectedly heavy book on art or photography". (Or both, on all too many occasions.)
2  I sit corrected: nuclear weapons are not a pre-req for Security Council permanent membership. In fact, when the council was established there was only one nuclear power. The five members are basically the victors of WW2. You may be getting confused with special status as a Nuclear-Weapon Country under the non-proliferation treaty. All the permanent members have this status ... basically because they were the only countries which had demonstrated ownership of nukes when the treaty came into force.
So now I know! I still think no nukes would be much preferable.