Category Archives: computing

A difficult choice

huh

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Vanity, family and sign language

Been looking for suitable episodes for inclusion in this blog, but on a “quality is better than quantity” principle”, I’m restraining myself from adding lots that is uninteresting or unamusing. Added to that, since starting work again, I haven’t had many opportunities when at home to muse, cogitate and generally allow myself to be creative. So no stories or rants for the moment.

An update on what the family is up to: K is pretty much a full time housewife now. Little A is keeping her busy. Little A herself has a cold but still manages to be charming. K is teaching her sign language to help her communication skills. She can now sign “more” by patting the palm of one hand against the clenched fist of her other hand, after doing which, she copies our praise by clapping , grinning and saying “yaay!”. I wonder if she will follow every new sign that she acquires with applause. Never mind – it’s very entertaining.

Big A has done the first of her AS level exams. All very strange to me. What happened to waiting until the June of the Upper Sixth?

I was at a lodge meeting last weekend. Passed off reasonably well – a second degree ceremony. Nice to have some work to do. A bit disappointed that I didn’t get “Heimat” on DVD for Christmas. Compensated by wearing a Bavarian shirt to work today.

Mum is completing the sale of her house in Chiswick next Friday and moving to a temporary rented place just around the corner. It’ll be nice to have all my immediate family in the same neighbourhood. It also means that my ties to London are now weaker. It will now be the four-times-a-year lodge meetings that will bring me back, although I don’t know if visiting central Staines qualifies as going to London, unless, of course I stay overnight with friends.

Got a new mobile phone, a Sony Ericsson K700i. Very nice – loads of memory (40mb), camera, radio etc. I can synch it with my contacts and diary on my PC, download music to it to listen to while stuck in dentists’ waiting rooms (and unwilling to read dog eared editions of old golfing magazines).

That’s your lot.

Real meat, Spam and Jung

To continue yesterday’s food theme, I found The Real Meat Company after they got an airing on BBC2 last night. They offer meat which has been reared humanely and is properly hung and probably tastes a lot better. When I’m back in the earning way, I’m tempted to celebrate by ordering something nice from them.

Lycos Europe has launched a screensaver called “Make Love Not Spam” which sends traffic to the websites advertised in the junk email we all get. The idea is that the spammers’ bandwidth bills go up as the websites respond to the fake traffic. Yes, we all want to hit back at the spammers, but is it legal and does it only generate more bandwidth, slowing down the net for everyone?

If you are in a profound mood, Melvyn Bragg’s BBC Radio 4 series on the history of ideas was good this morning. It was about Jung, the famous and influential Swiss psychologist who had a famous spat with Freud. He rocked the psychoanalytical boat by suggesting that sex wasn’t behind absolutely everything and believed that the natural outcome of therapy was a spiritual worldview, contrasting with the Freudian perspective which saw a materialist/rationalist worldview as the ultimate outcome of successful psychotherapy. He also influenced some of the thinking behind the New Age movement and created a branch of psychotherapy, to the extent that if you meet a shrink at a party, your opening gambit can be “Are you a Jungian or a Freudian?” And did you know, he wrote a book on flying saucers? Oh yes.

Anyway, listen to the programme again here or download it in MP3 format and burn it to a CD for your in-car listening pleasure.

Ups and Downs

(Preamble to this post: for those of you not aware, I have been job hunting.)

The bad news first:

I didn’t get a job I didn’t really want. Yes, you read that correctly. So maybe that wasn’t bad news after all. I think.

Apparently I was too “senior” for the role. But does that mean to old or too experienced? I’m not sure which is the more flattering.

The better news:

I have officially acquired MCP status. No, not “male chauvinist pig” for all you 1970’s women’s libbers. It stands for Microsoft Certified Professional. Now, to be honest, the actual class of MCP that I got was a distinctly “junior” one: the MCDST, not the coveted (and difficult to acquire) MCSE. The latter will follow in time.

The international news:

Looks like half the population of Ukraine is going to riot after an (allegedly!) fiddled election.

The joke:

Bill Clinton takes his dog to the vet. The vet asks “Would you like him castrated?”, to which the dog replies “Yes, please.”