Bellerophon symbol, variation 7
Friday 3rd August 2007

I dunno what's going on, but ever since Sunday my tongue has gone weird. It's like I can't taste sweet things any more. What does this mean? How long does it last? The other day I threw away a Granny Smith apple in disgust, thinking it was some weird flavourless Granny Smith. There was probably nothing wrong with it. The texture was fine. And when I eat chocolate (this is the worst thing), I'm just vaguely, distantly aware of the merest hint of chocolate, but mostly I can just feel the texture of the chocolate in my mouth and nothing else. Not good.

Saturday 4th August 2007

The last balloon
img_2953.jpg The last of A******'s birthday balloons, which popped a few minutes after taking this picture.

More distractions
img_2970.jpg I'm not sure if this was such a good idea but today, as part of the general cleaning up and tidying up, I thought it would be a good idea to get the reel-to-reel machine (TEAC A-3340S) wired up and sending the sounds of old, analogue tape reels (the oldest going back to 1994) into my PC. This is all done now, and I've started digitising the tape reels. Trouble is, there's this laser printer on the floor, completely in the way and I've no idea what to do with it. Hmmmmm. Anyway, the results can be heard here, which is a 7:51 track compressed at 256kbs (i.e. quite large).

Sunday 5th August 2007

img_2978.jpgimg_2976.jpgimg_2973.jpg Today we did go to this weird affair at Lowther park, or near enough. We got there some time between midday and one. Is that vague enough? We kind of wandered around a bit and then settled down for lunch near the 'main arena', where loads of horses were poncing around.
img_2981.jpgimg_2983.jpgimg_2984.jpgimg_2988.jpg Then there was meant to be some kind of parachuting thing going on, weather permitting and all that. I got a bit confused, thinking that the parachutists had some kind of physical disability (it would certainly make it more interesting), but the event was to raise money for a charity concerned with said disability. Anyway, there was a kind of ironic twist in that one of the parachutist (yellow parachute) came down at both a crazy angle and crazy speed, and kind of crashed sickeningly to the ground and never got up again. They had to get out an ambulance. A****** kept saying, "Oh dear, man dead," but it wasn't that bad. The guy announced on the tannoy that all was okay, whatever that means. The other four parachutists kind of gracefully touched down, with no major mishap. Mis-hap? Mishap. Hmmm.
img_2998.jpgimg_2994.jpgimg_2992.jpg Then there was this strange game where this man would put a ferret into this box with eight tunnels radiating outwards. You paid 50p and, if the ferret came out of your tunnel, I guess you won a prize. But who knows? Maybe you won the ferret. Dunno. img_3008.jpg I spotted an air rifle shooting range, so had to have a go. 7 shots for £2. Can't be bad. Didn't do too well, though, as can be seen by the target to the left there (although, given that most of the shots are concentrated just over an inch below the centre, perhaps the sight was out. Yes. That'll be it). I really wanted another go, but we didn't really have time.
img_2999.jpgimg_3002.jpgimg_3003.jpgimg_3007.jpg Then, naturally enough, there was some wresting going on and, erm . . . well, we bought miscellaneous items of food (cheese, chutney, mustards, fudge) from the food market. I probably would have bought more, but I still can't really taste things properly (see previous entry, or just take my word for it, whatever) and . . . is that a reason? Well, maybe it was because A****** was getting tired by that point. Hmmm, anyway. An interesting day. I didn't really feel I had taken many pictures, hence the one of M****** pushing a very sleepy looking A******, on our way back to the car.

Thursday 9th August 2007

Birthday celebrations
Today was my dad's (or 'gan-dad', as A****** seems to call him) birthday, and we were all invited round for drinks, food and celebrations. A****** was loving the whole running around, playing with his cousins thing, occasional doing this weird bowing motion. Not sure what that was about, but hey . . . And my dad spotted this weird vehicle in the sky. The photograph doesn't really do it justice, but due to an effect of the light, the angle of the vehicle, etc., it looked like it didn't have any wings, and was just gliding along silently. And then Jessica (Jo's eldest daughter) took a few pictures, like the one of the cake, my mum and dad, the one of me and M****** . . . possibly a few others, I'm not sure.

Sunday 12th August 2007

Warton Crag
Today we did go for a walk up around Warton Crag. Here are some pictures.

Wednesday 15th August 2007

Problems with libexpat
Last night various applications simply decided to stop working, apache included. The reason? Well, of course, it should have been obvious, but the library had disappeared. In fact, the new version of libexpat doesn't even have the extension .so.0, but libexpat neglected to tell anyone this. It's now just, don't you know. I guess libexpat thought it was too important to bother telling anyone about its name change. The solution, not found on Google, was simply to create a symbolic link from to, only it took me a while to realise this, stupidly thinking I just need to re-configure the system, and that would get everything knowing about this change to libexpat. Stupid, stupid, stupid.

Sunday 19th August 2007

Pink skies over Morecambe
img_3284.jpgimg_3276.jpgimg_3271.jpgimg_3270.jpg There's something wrong with my camera. It's almost like the camera said, "Hmmmm, this is a fairly uniform colour. I think I shall . . . make it pink, yes. Pink." I don't think I've dared use my camera since then.

Wednesday 22nd August 2007

Today there was a slightly awkward moment at nursery. I went to pick up A****** for his lunch and this older boy (well, I think he was a boy) very deliberately hit the base of my spine (well, when I say 'deliberately', I mean the action of hitting was deliberate, rather than (I assume) the part of me that was hit) as I was kneeling to lift A****** out of some plastic car thingy. I didn't really think anything of it, but two of the carers saw the incident and so the boy/girl unit was made to apologise to A******'s daddy. After the apology, I wasn't really sure what to say next, so just smiled and said, "That's okay." Was that the right response? Maybe I should have gone, "Your apology is accepted, child, but prey this sorry incident is never, ever repeated again, OR THERE WILL BE HELL TO PAY AND REVENGE WILL BE DELIVERED UNTO YOU TWICE FOLD." Lord knows. Had I said that, he/she/it might have just smiled smugly and gone, "I think the use of the word 'again' was tautological." Otherwise I've been busy either mastering some of the old Bellerophon tape reels or else trying to get some of my maths assignment done (only two left now).

Friday 24th August 2007

It's not where you're going, it's where you are
Blimey, it's not like I often write about work. Perhaps 'cos it's a bit like talking about one's dreams. Very interesting unto yourself, but no-one else is really all that interested. Oh sure - the person you're talking to may show a polite interest, but that's just good manners. But anyway, I digress . . . my place of work has recently undergone a, erm . . . image change? Perhaps that's the best way of putting it. As with any major image change, there's always problems, not least the issue of your new identity and how to convey this to others. Perhaps a workplace would do this using suitable slogans. The title of this entry refers to one of these such slogans, only I've reversed the negative on each side of the comma (the original being, "It's not where you are, but where you're going . . . " or near enough), because surely it's not about where you're going, but where you are that counts. I have a book of quotations and one of my favourites is "Today" which was supposedly scratched into a stone, a stone that sat on John Ruskin's desk. Maybe John got it wrong, though. Maybe it should have been "Tomorrow"

Tuesday 28th August 2007

Today I had a day off work and so was mainly concentrating my time on one of my maths assignments. Pretty dull stuff, really. My neighbour, to whom I'm allowing wireless internet access for his PS3, popped round to check the internet was still working okay. I took my lap-top round to his house, and sat a couple of feet away from his PS3. We found a couple of Hank Marvin (his choice, not mine) videos from YouTube and observed that the lap-top managed to retrieve these within a few seconds and the PS3 not so. Sony keep telling him it must be a problem with the ISP, the wireless connection, the router, the time of the day, the time of the month, the sun, the moon, the stock market . . . just anything, really, but definitely not a fault with the PS3. The other thing my neighbour has been told (perhaps by Sony, but I think more likely from friends/acquaintances) is that the PS3 is merely a games console, and not a PC, therefore slower wireless network speeds are to be expected - but this makes no sense to me. I'm wondering why his PS3 is having such a hard time at accessing my network (or any network) via its built-in wireless card; more and more I'm thinking there's a fault with the PS3.