September 2021

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Thursday 30 September 2021
Epoch Seconds: 1633015398

Feeling Grotty

For the last few weeks, I've had some pain deep in my back in the area of (what I thought were) my kidneys. But according to the doctor, it's more like my lower lung. So, a blood test to see what's going on there then...

But I have also been feeling hungover for about a week (which considering I don't drink alcohol anymore, I feel is a tad unfair) and generally grotty.


Wednesday 29 September 2021
Epoch Seconds: 1632945221


Some days you just see a lot of theodolites...

These two were part of about a dozen I had seen this morning.
These two were part of about a dozen I had seen this morning.

So I asked this guy if they are surveying students3 or something. He doesn't know what everyone else is doing. Different companies apparently!

Matey's theory is because it's sunny
Matey's theory is because it's sunny

Wednesday 29 September 2021
Epoch Seconds: 1632945056

Tamar Bridge

Talking of the Tamar Bridge (which is an odd concept in a reverse-chronological blog), My flabber was gasted earlier when a BMW driver correctly allowed me to pull in front of him at a 'merge in turn' junction.

The Universal Order was restored when I spotted his dealer plates...

Wednesday 29 September 2021
Epoch Seconds: 1632944899

Special Place in Hell

This happened (again) today on the Tamar Bridge. I was driving toward a hitherto empty Tag-Only Lane when someone pulled out in front of me to dive up into that lane. As soon as they did I knew, just knew, that they wouldn't in fact own a tag...

So everyone was delayed again...

Wednesday 29 September 2021
Epoch Seconds: 1632944792


I strongly suspect that the real answer to Life, The Universe and Everything is 'The transfer of Energy". It has got to be, right? That is the purpose of everything that happens in the Universe (as far as we know).

Tuesday 28 September 2021
Epoch Seconds: 1632826270

Ubuntu 21.10 Impish Indri

On the subject of new OS releases and upgrades, I've been tested Ubuntu 21.10 Impish Indri Beta for a few days now, and initial findings are that it's good. I do like Gnome 40's horizontal workflow, but I'm not sure I like Ubuntu's customisation of it - but I totally get why they've done that. I'll live with it...

Tuesday 28 September 2021
Epoch Seconds: 1632825948


Autumn has definitely arrived - It's really bloody stormy out today with quite fierce rain showers mixed with strong winds. Joshua says he was woken up yesterday morning by it (I didn't hear that myself, but many have corroborated his findings! lol)

Tuesday 28 September 2021
Epoch Seconds: 1632825269

Windows 11

After a few weeks of testing, I have to say that I think Windows 11 is a pretty decent OS. It looks good, and seems slicker than Win 10 on the same hardware. Well done, Microsoft!

Monday 27 September 2021
Epoch Seconds: 1632738601


What a disaster. After months of food shortages and supermarket shelves being empty, we now have massive (>250%) rises in the price of energy and to top it off this weekend, people are panic buying petrol as the big suppliers are saying 75% of their forecourts are suffering fuel shortages.

The Army is being drafted in to drive lorries to supply the fuel - but that same Army (massively depleted by years of Tory cutbacks) is also driving lorries to supply food to supermarkets.

The government is relaxing visa restrictions to try to beg European lorry drivers to come back and save Christmas for us all - those lorry drivers that we've spent 4 years roundly telling to fuck off back to Europe!

Today the government is also 'temporarily' (it never is) scrapping the non-competition law for fuel suppliers - the law that's there to stop cartels from ripping us off - why that particular law is being suspended, I have no idea

This is the deregulation that unscrupulous business wants and it's what the Tories have been aiming for with Brexit all along.

I am unbelievably angry with the people, some of whom are my own family, who voted for Brexit. This is their mess, and they should be the ones paying for it - not the 80% of the country who clearly saw it as a disaster waiting to unfold.

And yet, these idiots will still vote Tory in any future election because they are tribal - no matter how much they are hurt (and in some cases killed) by the Tory policies.

These moron (unts have voted to materially and financially harm their own families and friends. All because their fascist comics like The Sun and The Daily Mail told them to...

These people should be voted off the island, not the Europeans - I'll take 1000 Europeans into the country for every 1 of these traitorous scum.

Sunday 26 September 2021
Epoch Seconds: 1632654556

Kissing Gate

While out walking around Devonport, I found a disused kissing gate, which I assume used to lead down to Devonport train station.

Edit: As a result of this find, I set up the Gateways to Hell subreddit.

  • Kissing Gate
    Kissing Gate
  • But why did they only allow a single person through at a time?
    But why did they only allow a single person through at a time?

Sunday 26 September 2021
Epoch Seconds: 1632654447

Linkin Park in the Park

Dan was clearly a Linkin Park fan
Dan was clearly a Linkin Park fan

Sunday 26 September 2021
Epoch Seconds: 1632654346


The home office is coming along nicely now...

Home Office
Only 4x PCs in the room!

Sunday 26 September 2021
Epoch Seconds: 1632653047

Neglecting this Blog

I feel like I've been neglecting this blog this month - I have.

It's not like I want to nor do I wish to let it just die off, but I haven't had anything interesting to write about - or at least, by the time I get near to a computer to write about it, I've forgotten it.

Which is a shame because I really do quite like1 looking at last year's entries and seeing what I was up to.

But there are important things to celebrate - Joshua has had his dissertation marked at 77%, which is enough for a 1st class degree, but more importantly, his dissertation has been down selected for publishing in a scientific journal - Your first published paper is always memorable. Mine especially so, because I had just left the company when it was published, so they published it in someone else's name!

We are all double-vaccinated now, so there was celebration in Siobhan being the final person in the immediate family to get that accolade.

I've been told I'm being promoted at work - not bad for only being there for 4 weeks (now 7 weeks, but I was told at 4 weeks).

And after 4 years of not speaking to my mother (due to her telling me not to), we're back in touch.

So life is going well and we have reason to celebrate which we did when I took the family out for a nice meal at the family-favourite Steak and Omelette Bar in Plymouth - A hilarious and rather lovely night ensued...

Teri & Kim were with us too
(Teri & Kim were with us also)

Saturday 11 September 2021
Epoch Seconds: 1631350706

Book Review - The Midnight Library

The Midnight LibraryThe Midnight Library by Matt Haig
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

A really good book, this.
Very clever and a new twist on a plot-line.
Thoroughly engaging and interesting.
I read the book after a female friend recommended it on her Facebook feed. When I said I had bought it, she messaged me and said that she didn't know if I'd like it because "it's a bit too girly" - It's not! Not at all.
It's a pleasure to read and a great book - for all genders!
I even shed a tear of joy at the end.

View all my reviews

Thursday 09 September 2021
Epoch Seconds: 1631198940

Ben Lines

In a spontaneous moment of madness yesterday, Kim and I decided to have dinner at Nibana restaurant in Crownhill.

As we were finishing our mains, the table next to us filled up with 3 elderly couples.

I thought I recognised him, but when he spoke in his very distinctive voice, I realised that our university lecturer, Ben Lines, was one of the guests - he had retired from BT to become a uni lecturer over 20 years ago so must be a decent age now!

Ben appeared to be the ringleader of the group ordering wine etc. for the table.

What you need to know about Ben, apart from him being an excellent lecturer, he was also Head of Faculty. And when I emigrated to the US, Ben helped me finish my degree by doing correspondence courses in New York to get the credits and reverse-transfer them to the UK so that I could get my degree from Plymouth. The reason for this fiasco is that American universities make technical people do humanity subjects, and they wouldn't award me a degree unless I took modules in English, History, etc. which would have extended my graduation by 2 years!

So I owe a debt of gratitude to Ben and everything he did for me - my career is arguably down to Ben and his willingness to bend rules to shoehorn my particularly odd requirements into getting a bone fide degree.

So there in the moment, when I saw that Ben was the only one in his party drinking the red wine, I called the waiter who was serving Ben and out loud asked if I could pay for that bottle of red wine that Ben was having.

Of course, Ben didn't recognise me after all these years and thousands of students, but he kind of remembered my story.

And a ~Β£20 bottle of red is a very small price to pay to the man who set me on my way in life.

His wife told Kim that my gesture would make his night and he'd be telling everyone about it from now on. Good. Thanks Ben!

Wednesday 01 September 2021
Epoch Seconds: 1630479741


Blimey. September came around quickly. I must be enjoying myself - or getting old...

  1. Can 'really' and 'quite' go together in the same preposition2?
  2. Is that a preposition?
  3. Students studying surveying, not surveilling other students.

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