Archive for February, 2011

For trawnapanda

Monday, February 28th, 2011

A high school classmate of mine, Derek, is some sort of chemist for a pharmaceutical company. Now I know nothing about chemistry except what I have absorbed from teh Intarwebz, but his blog seems to be an interesting one. He has a post on a substance with the intriguing name of chlorine azide, which seems to be one of a family of compounds that explodes at the drop of a hat…pin. He writes very well, and even a scientific ignoramus like me can understand most of it. You might want to mosey over there in case you like it too.

From Twitter 02-27-2011

Monday, February 28th, 2011
  • 08:22:11: Morning, all. Slowly recovering my computer system, and the sky is blue this morning. Spring is coming!
  • 19:33:03: Making progress on my home server. Now it’s connected to my new computer and my netbook, so perhaps I’ll be able to use the new one now.
  • 23:45:57: Well, tweeps & peeps, time to make a quick call to the States and then hit the hay. Hope y’all enjoy the Oscars.

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My week and welcome to it

Sunday, February 27th, 2011

It’s not been a quiet week here. However, I’ve not blogged for a while (except for cutesy stuff and whatever meagre Tweets I could scare up) so here goes nothing.

You may recall that my main desktop computer went all funny a while back. And you may also recall that our dear friend BK in Singapore put together a new desktop computer for me, all shiny and new with Windows 7 and all sorts of stuff on it. And, of course, my backup NAS box frying was a joy.

So I had a dilemma. However, Her Majesty somewhat showed the way forward in that by writing me a cheque for a tax refund that is 2 years overdue. I am going to send part of that off to our savings account, but have used about a third of it to get our systems rationalised here.

I bought an HP Home Media Smart Server EX490, and two 2TB disks to go with the 1TB disk already in it. I bought 2x2GB memory sticks and a half-height graphics card for the computer with the rest of that money.

First off, the disks and server came, and what a pain in the rump setting it up. The manual is in .pdf format, which is fine. However, it is not on the media that came with the server; you have to winkle it out of the HP website.

Worse than that, there is no indication that you have to do any more than install the two extra disks in it to get them to format and start working. Their LEDs blink, and I thought that meant they were formatting. Wrong. When I finally could read the manual, I discovered that the blinking meant that the disk wasn’t installed at all. I had to do it manually in a menu that had no indication that you could do such a thing.

Third, there is a function on the server which will allow you to “collect” your videos, pictures, and music onto the server, which will then stream it to any device you’ve got handy. However, the server continuously told me that the software on my computer (not on the server) was incompatible with the server and I had to uninstall it then reinstall it. I did that, and got the same message. After a lot of research, I discovered the following Mongolian clusterfuck:

  • When the server is turned on and the OS is installed on it, the server merrily goes to Windows Update and requests the newest version of its OS.
  • This newest version of the OS does not update the software on your PC.
  • Thus the two versions are incompatible, and to fix it, you have to uninstall the software from the PC and reinstall it not from the DVD that came with the server but from the server itself, using a web interface.

None of this is intuitive.

The good thing is that it automatically backs up your computers if they’re on during the night (or any time you set it for).

I then installed the software on the new computer, and got an intermittent connection. I had to install a Belkin WiFi stick to get a reliable connection to the network. Now that’s done, I’m hoping that the backup and the Media Collection software will do their work relatively silently.

Once the music and videos are safely ensconced on the server, I shall (I hope) install the software on the munged-up desktop and back it up. Then I can transfer stuff to my heart’s content here and finally move this computer downstairs to my study.

I will then wipe the old computer and try to put Vista 64bit on it for HWMBO.

Otherwise, we have had a relatively quiet time. We went to our friends’ place for dinner Friday, bringing a bottle of Moet and a very good bottle of red. The food was fantastic and the company even more so. It’s great having friends like that.

On Wednesday evening I initiated a man 5 years older than I am into Freemasonry. I enjoyed the ceremony, apart from blanking out several times on my lines. The initiate is a black cab driver, and he had four cab driver friends with him who were already Freemasons. The first time I stopped for a prompt, all four of them loudly tried to prompt me. I looked at them and said, “One prompter, please.” and I had no further problem. The dinner was even nice, and I enjoyed the evening immensely. I have been elected to a second consecutive year as Master of the Lodge as my Senior Warden does not want to advance this year. He’s getting married in May and has just started his own business, and wants another year to get himself settled.

I continue on IV antibiotics. They seem to have done the trick, but the operation I’m waiting for is apt to be a more permanent and less intrusive solution.

This coming week I will have to go to the foot clinic and get more antibiotics, as well as ask them about going private for the operation. The Masonic charities might stump up some money for that to happen, as it looks like the waiting list is not getting any shorter and I am getting more and more frustrated with the delays. I am visiting a Lodge on Thursday where a friend is being installed as Master, and preaching on Sunday, as well as attending the installation of Bishop Christopher as Bishop of Southwark in the afternoon.

Today’s Help Wanted Ad

Sunday, February 27th, 2011

In years past, there were help wanted ads segregated by sex, some which said that {insert ethnic group} need not apply, and all types of caveats and restrictions mentioned, so that people the employer disliked would not waste his time coming for an interview. I thought that those times were long gone, but in a help wanted posting this morning I saw something that made me go “hm….” The company is a music-oriented one, making software that assists in keeping your music tidy on your computer. One line in the ad gave the requirement:

A passion for music (except Justin Bieber)

I see.

I think.

From Twitter 02-26-2011

Sunday, February 27th, 2011
  • 15:48:56: RT @riazat_butt: Q 4 threading in Kingsland Shopping Ctr pretty long. Who knew public hair removal was so popular? <1 “l” away from disaster
  • 15:49:40: RT @Perignonic: I gonna get my abs back. Somehow or another. < They’re in there, just work on the fat and they’ll resurface! Good luck!

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From Twitter 02-25-2011

Saturday, February 26th, 2011

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From Twitter 02-24-2011

Friday, February 25th, 2011
  • 17:46:06: RT @sonicchubb: RT @aThumper: Deja Moo: The feeling that you’ve heard this bull before.
  • 17:56:36: Well, tweeps & peeps, I’ve been absent for a while as I’ve been busier than a 1-armed paperhanger. Will go on for a while, this busy stuff.

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From Twitter 02-23-2011

Thursday, February 24th, 2011
  • 11:19:43: RT @gbartdebate RT + follow to win a Patrick Heron Watercolour poster. Winners drawn Thurs!

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Today’s Religious Joke…

Wednesday, February 23rd, 2011

…courtesy of MadPriest‘s MadDad:

Mother Superior was on her way to late morning prayers, when she passed two novices just leaving early morning prayers on their way to classes. As she passed the young ladies, Mother Superior said, ‘Good morning, ladies.’

The novices replied, ‘Good morning, Mother Superior, may God be with you.’

But after they had passed, Mother Superior heard one say to the other, ‘I think she got out of the wrong side of the bed this morning.’

This startled Mother Superior, but she chose not to pursue the issue.

A little further down the hall, Mother Superior passed two of the Sisters who had been teaching at the convent for several years. She greeted them with, ‘Good morning, Sister Martha, Sister Jessica, may God give you wisdom for our students today.’

‘Good morning, Mother Superior. Thank you, and may God be with you.’

But again, after passing, Mother Superior overheard, ‘She got out of the wrong side of bed today.’

Baffled, she started to wonder if she had spoken harshly, or with an irritated look on her face. She vowed to be more pleasant. Looking down the hall, Mother Superior saw retired Sister Mary approaching, step by step, with her walker. As Sister Mary was rather deaf, Mother Superior had plenty of time to arrange a pleasant smile on her face, before greeting Sister Mary.

‘Good morning, Sister Mary. I’m so happy to see you up and about. I pray God watches over you today, and grants you a wonderful day.’

‘Ah, Good morning, Mother Superior, and thank you. I see you got up on the wrong side of bed this morning.’

Mother Superior was floored!

‘Sister Mary, what have I done wrong? I have tried to be pleasant, but three times already today, people have said that about me.’

Sister Mary stopped her walker, and looked Mother Superior in the face.

‘Oh, don’t take it personally, Mother Superior. It’s just that you’re wearing Father Murphy’s slippers.!!

February 16th in the Old Town

Wednesday, February 23rd, 2011

Seems like February 16th was a bit hectic for the constabulary in Marblehead. Here’s the police log for that day:

· Caller reports neighbors have their outside radio on and the whole neighborhood can hear it on Gregory Street at 12:36 a.m.
· Caller reports someone in her backyard at Highland Terrace at 1:36 a.m. She said that she did not see anything; she was just reacting to her dog reacting and the sound could have been an animal.
· A power outage vehicle was reportedly parked in a bad spot at the corner of West Shore Drive and Jersey Street at 7:49 a.m.
· Report of a restraining order violation on Evans Road at 11:14 a.m.
· Report of a man carrying an Elmo doll and appearing reportedly “whacked out” on Pleasant and Maverick streets at 11:19 a.m.
· Assisting in the transportation of a man on Pleasant Street to North Shore Medical Center to treat a history of mental illness at 12:01 p.m.
· Report of a lottery scam on Auburndale Road at 12:24 p.m.
· A purse was found on School Street at 12:49 p.m.
· Report of a green light cover blocking the traffic light on Ocean and Atlantic avenues at 1:54 p.m.
· Caller reports motor vehicle blocking her driveway on Pleasant Street at 1:58 p.m.
· Caller reports a motor vehicle parked in the middle of the road on Barnard Street at 2:59 p.m. Caller said the owner of the car was staring her down and trying to bully her, but would not move the car.

The man carrying the Elmo doll is a very nice touch; I do hope that no Elmos were harmed while apprehending him.

From Twitter 02-22-2011

Wednesday, February 23rd, 2011

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Today’s Joke…

Saturday, February 19th, 2011

…comes from my friend Michael.

A GOOD NURSE

A motorcycle policeman was rushed to the hospital with an inflamed appendix. The doctors operated and advised him that all was well; however, the policeman kept feeling something pulling at the hairs in his crotch. Worried that it might be a second surgery and the doctors hadn’t told him about it, he finally got enough energy to pull his hospital gown up enough so he could look at what was making him so uncomfortable. Taped firmly across his pubic hair and private parts were three wide strips of adhesive tape, the kind that doesn’t come off easily—if at all. Written on the tape in large black letters was the sentence,

‘Get well soon.. from the nurse in the Jeep you pulled over last week.’

From Twitter 02-18-2011

Saturday, February 19th, 2011
  • 23:18:30: Oh, tweeps & peeps, I have now transferred my iTunes to my new computer with only a few album covers as casualties ***happydance***
  • 23:20:20: RT @50cent: HELP WANTED looking for a clean talented women who can use all 3 holes preferably no gagging no complaining. job pays well < Hm.

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Today’s E-book URL

Friday, February 18th, 2011

The Kindle has only been around for about 3 years or so (maybe more, maybe less). Etch-A-Sketch has been around for 50 years. Does that mean that there may be some copy-catting going around that would attract the attention of m’learned friends?

Thanks to for the link, and the laugh.

Unexpected pleasure

Friday, February 18th, 2011

After the nurse left this afternoon, having given me my IV antibiotics, I went out to collect the post. Oddly enough, for this postal area, there was actually post to collect. The post in the SE1 postal zone is pretty erratic. There is much labour union unrest here, and many of the letter carriers go out on wildcat strikes. Some seem to only deliver to half their route, then bring the post back to the sorting office.

In the middle of the magazines and letters was an ominous brown envelope from Her Majesty’s Revenue and Customs. Even though I haven’t been working for more than two years, such envelopes always fill me with dread. But this one, surprisingly, was good news. In the last year that I worked, 2008-2009, I had overpaid tax (because I was made redundant before the end of the tax year) and am now due more than £1,500 refund, plus around £9 in interest.

This will allow me to put away enough money to visit Marblehead when my feet have been sorted out. I will probably also use the money for a piece of computer kit, but I know not what just yet.

Now all I have to do is win the EuroMillions lottery this evening and I’m good to go.

From Twitter 02-17-2011

Friday, February 18th, 2011
  • 23:50:40: RT @lynneguist Or not. RT @discount_london Cockney Rhyming Slang: 10 phrases to make you sound like a Londoner<<it’s all porky pies…
  • 23:57:56: Well, tweeps & peeps, the quack’s still pulling bone out of my foot 🙁 Will try to sleep. Be good, and if you can’t be good, be careful!

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From Twitter 02-16-2011

Thursday, February 17th, 2011
  • 16:19:24: Working on my new computer. More difficult to download things than I thought. Kind of a pain…but I’ll get there.

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Today’s Future News Article…

Wednesday, February 16th, 2011

…comes from that impeccable source of news, the Onion. Ever considered what teenagers 75 years from now would think about the great gay marriage controversy of our time?

Today’s Fetish URL

Wednesday, February 16th, 2011

This story reminds me of the old Rocky and Bullwinkle cartoons, where one character, observing something odd, would remark “Now that’s not something you see everyday.” This couple in Paris were taking a walk, but were arrested during the walk because they were taking the air perhaps a bit more extensively than they should have.

Five years ago today…

Monday, February 14th, 2011

…HWMBO and I contracted our civil partnership at Southwark Register Office. I had suggested February 15th but HWMBO said to the Registrar: “How about February 14th?” I scoffed. “Everyone will want to be married that day—there won’t be a slot.” But the Registrar smiled and said, “We have plenty of slots available for the 14th.”

And so it happened. The report, with pictures, is here.

I decided that instead of buying a card I’d buy some tulips at Tesco. When I got them home I discovered that they had not only been out of water a bit too long, but I would have to cut them down quite a bit to keep them in the vase I could find. No matter, HWMBO liked them anyway.

I am the luckiest guy on the planet. I hope that all of you who celebrate Valentine’s Day had a very good one, and those of you who have yet to find your Valentine do so, if you want to.

From Twitter 02-13-2011

Monday, February 14th, 2011
  • 08:46:36: Good morning, all. Grey here in London; HWMBO finding jetlag difficult.
  • 08:47:22: Dreamed I was in church and smelled incense-never smelled anything in a dream before. Anyone else had a dream and smelled something in it?

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Today’s Travel Love Stories

Sunday, February 13th, 2011

I always read the Family section of the Saturday Grauniad, but I don’t know why, as it’s mostly about children. I always get something out of it, though. This week’s section’s feature story is of three couples who met on trains. You might think this is a bit dull, but, believe me, the stories are heartwarming at a time when hearts need to be warmed.

From Twitter 02-12-2011

Sunday, February 13th, 2011

  • 00:10:00: Well, tweeps & peeps, HWMBO is home from Singapore, hooray! Time for bed; I may have to carry him upstairs. Sleep tight, all!
  • 11:26:41: Good morning, all. HWMBO is unpacked, a new computer is upstairs waiting to be set up, and I’m waiting for my IV. How are y’all today?
  • 21:17:49: RT @Beschizza: Went out without iPhone. Frustrated at not being able to tell twitter how liberating it felt.
  • 21:52:56: RT @MarkReiley: It’s going to be awesome when Stephen Hawking discovers Auto-Tune.
  • 22:58:05: Well, tweeps & peeps, it’s time to shut the new computer down and get ready for 40 winks. Be careful: it’s a minefield out there! Peace out.

Today’s Ray of Hope Video

Saturday, February 12th, 2011

Now, you may or may not be familiar with the TV game show Family Feud. If you aren’t, worry not! It’s self explanatory. A studio audience was asked to complete a sentence, then their answers are tallied and two family groups are asked to complete the same sentence. But when the sentence is “Name something that is passed around.” the fun starts.

There will Always be an England…er…Great Britain…er…United Kingdom

Saturday, February 12th, 2011

For those who are a bit unclear on where I live and what it’s part of, this video is for you. If by the end of it you are not able to name the constituent parts of the United Kingdom, Great Britain, those countries which recognise the Queen as head of state, the Crown Dependencies, the British Overseas Territories, and Uncle Tom Cobbleigh and all, you were not listening.

I have set up the gift computer from my friend BK

Saturday, February 12th, 2011

It’s a Windows 7 computer, mini-sized, with an Asus motherboard. I haven’t connected up speakers or such to it, but I suspect it’ll do fairly well.

Next step is to plan out how to transfer all my material from my current desktop to that machine. Once that is done, I’ll move the current machine out of here and put the smaller one in its place.

Then I’ll probably reformat the current machine and perhaps install another version of Windows 7 64 bit and see how that works. Perhaps HWMBO will get it.

This computer stuff is so complicated. Thanks to our Singaporean friend BK, who put the computer together in record time.

Pennsylvania Grand Jury report on clergy sexual abuse

Saturday, February 12th, 2011

Thanks to Whispers in the Loggia, I have just read a grand jury report on clergy sexual abuse in the Archdiocese of Philadelphia. (.pdf file). One would have thought that after the problems in Boston, New York, Milwaukee, and elsewhere the American Catholic hierarchy would have pulled up their purple or red socks and tried to put things right. This report seems to demonstrate that, in Philadelphia at least, priests were continually reassigned after credible accusations of child sexual abuse and the victims were ignored or prevented from reporting their abuse to the authorities.

A first for the US, I believe, is that the Grand Jury recommended that the clergyman responsible for assignment of priests in the Philadelphia Archdiocese also be charged with endangering the welfare of minors, through his policy of moving those accused priests around. While the Grand jury would have liked to have charged the retired Archbishop of Philadelphia on the same grounds, Cardinal Bevilaqua, in his late 80’s, is now said by his doctors to be quite ill and suffering with dementia. The Grand Jury “reluctantly” did not recommend that he be charged.

What can be learned from this sad sorry tale?

First, any organisation which has charge of children or vulnerable adults and finds that an adult responsible for the welfare of the children or vulnerable adults has been accused of abuse of any kind must immediately suspend that adult and report the allegations to the authorities.

Second, support of the victim must be independent of the organisation and must trump any other considerations.

Third, ensure that all previous cases of abuse are fully investigated, reported to the authorities, and the victims listened to and action taken.

Today’s Joke

Saturday, February 12th, 2011

…courtesy of MadPriest‘s MadDad. Blame them both.

An 80-year-old Scot went to the doctor for a check-up. The doctor was amazed at what good shape the old fellow was in and asked: “How do you stay in such great physical condition?'”

“I am Scottish and I am a golfer,” said the old fellow: “and that is why I am in such good shape. I’m up well before daylight and out golfing up and down the fairways. I have a wee glass of whisky, and that’s it.”

“Well,’ said the doctor, ‘I’m sure that helps, but there has to be more to it. How old was your dad when he died?”

“Who said my Dad died?”

The doctor was amazed. “You mean you are 80 years old and your dad is still alive? How old is he?”

“He is 100 years old,” said the old Scottish golfer. “In fact he golfed wi’ me this mornin, and then we went to the topless beach for a walk and had anither wee dram and that is why he is still alive. He is a Scot and he is a golfer, too.”

“Well,” the doctor said, “that’s great, but I am sure there is more to it than that. How about your dad’s dad? How old was he when he died?”

“Who said my Grandad is dead?”

Stunned, the doctor asked, “You mean you are 80 years old and your grandfather is still living! Incredible, how old is he?”

“He is 118 years old,” said the old Scottish golfer.

The doctor was getting frustrated at this point: “So, I guess he went golfing with you this morning too?”

“No. Grandad couldnae go this mornin’ because he is getting married today.”

At this point the doctor was close to losing it. “Getting married!! Why would a 118 year-old bloke want to get married?”

“Who said he wanted to?”

From Twitter 02-11-2011

Saturday, February 12th, 2011
  • 14:30:41: HWMBO is in the air over the Persian Gulf on his way back to London. Hooray!
  • 18:36:02: #bornthisway
  • 19:32:59: RT @davidkpoole Uninstalling dictator complete . ????????????????????? ..100%. It is now safe to restart your country #Egypt

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Fr Ray Comes Out

Friday, February 11th, 2011

I just finished watching a TV program on Channel 4 called Fr Ray Comes Out. In it the Rev’d Ray Andrews, Priest in Charge of St. George the Martyr with St. Alphege & St. Jude at the Borough, just up the road from me, agonises about coming out to his parishioners in a Sunday sermon during Advent.

Ray is a truly nice guy, a good priest, loved by his parishioners, and very effective in what is a mixture of deprived council estates and luxury housing for stockbrokers in the City.

There is no official reaction from the Diocese shown in the film: Archdeacon Michael and Bishop Christopher weren’t interviewed. It was a very personal journey for Ray.

Now you couldn’t show something like this that didn’t have a happy ending. He comes out of it a bit nervously, but the parishioners who were interviewed seemed to be positive, even though many of them had difficulties with the notion of homosexuality from a theological standpoint. It’s always different when you know a gay person.

My networks in the deanery must be deficient, or else the news was kept very quiet. I shall have to ask Ethel, my friend who goes to weekday services over there, about it. (She got a cameo role for a moment or two.)

I’m having lunch with the Archdeacon on Tuesday so will ask about it. I know that Michael is comfortable with gay clergy, and the Diocese in general is comfortable with them. But will look for any fallout from the program and report.

Today’s great discovery

Friday, February 11th, 2011

If you aren’t into geekery, then perhaps you might want to skip this post.

For a while now, maybe a week, I have had difficulties with Thunderbird, Mozilla’s email program. Up until the time I finally got my emails off the main computer and onto my netbook, I was doing OK. I had difficulty in transferring those emails, and did some tinkering with a Thunderbird file called profile.ini. Those of you who are as ancient as I will remember when DOS programs (remember DOS?) always came with an .ini file, which controlled various initial states of the program in question. config.ini was perhaps the most famous of these files.

So Thunderbird still uses a profile.ini file to control where it finds its, um, profile. The profile is not stored in the Program Files folder, it’s stored in an area under Users, which would allow for several people to use Thunderbird on the same machine without falling all over each other.

In the course of my tinkering I found that there is a line in that file that looks like this:

Profile={profile address}

Now the people at Mozilla were crafty. They thought that people might want to place their profiles somewhere other than in Users. So, they had the possibility of two ways of entering the profile address. One was absolute, and one was relative. So, if my profile were in C:\Profiles\chris.profile, I would enter the line:

Profile=C:\Profiles\chris.profile

after telling Thunderbird that I wanted an absolute path to the profile.

However, if I wished to say that the profile was in the Thunderbird profile directory, and not use an absolute path, I would use a relative one:

Profile=.\Profiles\chris.profile

after telling Thunderbird that I wanted a relative path.

All of a sudden, last week I found that it was difficult to move emails into folders in groups. If I selected ten emails to move into a folder and then tried to move them with the mouse, nothing happened. Nada. Rien. Nihil.

If I downloaded emails from the server, I could not open them unless I exited Thunderbird and restarted it. I could not compact folders, and the Inbox folder (which needs to be compacted regularly) showed that it was holding something like “367% of 35.6MB”.

Not good.

I stewed about this for about a week, but today I got a brainstorm. Instead of typing the relative path as I did above, I typed it:

Profile=Profiles\chris.profile

You will note that I removed the “.\” after the “Profile=” keyword. You will be delighted to know that this now works. It seems that while Mozilla believes that DOS-style .ini files are a good idea, it does not go so far as to parse DOS-style pathnames. Worse, instead of refusing to run and saying that it can’t find the profile, it goes ahead and finds it but then doesn’t allow certain operations to happen in it while allowing other things to happily continue to happen.

Is this a bug? Is this a feature? The jury’s still out on that. I do know that this behaviour is not very intuitive and needs to be documented somewhere so that other people who are trying to bring their profiles over from another machine can do so without stumbling over this anachronism.

From Twitter 02-10-2011

Friday, February 11th, 2011
  • 09:05:27: @jonk i’ve never heard of anyone here eating sardines & jam. There are eccentrics everywhere, of course.
  • 09:06:33: RT @Phreak_Quency I do have to be up at 8am today 🙁 << Sounds like you’re “up” now…
  • 09:13:20: @dentalgaymer Happy birthday! Many happy returns of the day.
  • 09:21:30: RT @ruskin147: @corfmeister @alicearnold1 loving your campaign to get @johnprescott to read shipping forecast….I’d pay to hear that…
  • 13:22:16: It’s easy being with people you like, but being with people you hate? That’s a skill. — Roy Chan
  • 21:22:26: 7 year old benefactor supports LGBT equality http://bit.ly/f6LH4r There is joy and hope yet in this cold world.

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Today’s Tapper McWidestance Politician

Thursday, February 10th, 2011

You will all remember the Senator from the great state of Idaho who was caught in a stall in a Minneapolis airport men’s room, legs planted wide on the floor and tapping away to attract the attention of men in the next stall over, won’t you? I call former Senator Larry Craig Tapper McWidestance and I now see that the Tapper McWidestance Award for Miscreants in a Legislative Body has been won by former Representative Christopher Lee (R-NY), a married man with a family, who used Craigslist to post a personal ad with a shirtless picture of himself. He described himself as a lobbyist and shaved a few years off his age in correspondence with a woman who contacted him from his post on “Women Seeking Men”. When she googled him and found out that the goods weren’t as represented, she sang to the news media and made the picture public.

Former Rep. Lee voted against the repeal of “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell”. He obviously was applying it in his own life.

I do not rejoice that people who make wrong choices in their personal lives get bitten back from it. I have made wrong choices too, and have been duly bitten. Even people in public life have the right to a private life as well.

However, people in public life, especially those who advocate a moral code of some sort, should not break that moral code in private unless they are prepared for that to become public.

I’m not gloating (a male Democratic representative from NY had to resign a year or so ago when he was caught groping a male House page, so goose’s sauce is gander’s sauce). But what I’m continually learning in my own life as well as in reading the news is that consistency in one’s public and private lives is so much easier than doing one thing and advocating something entirely different. This cognitive dissonance in one’s life really makes it difficult to be authentic. It also makes it difficult to be a legislator.

From Twitter 02-09-2011

Thursday, February 10th, 2011
  • 04:00:48: Insomnia sucks. That is all.
  • 09:26:58: @kevjumba don’t bother reading it; from the abstract it looks like it’s full of hot air.
  • 09:31:27: RT @mhisham maybe they hv a Detroit chapter too! RT @farinelli: Moro Islamic Liberation Front? Really? These guys need to surf the Net abit
  • 09:33:07: RT @Squibby_ Battersea power station looks like a horse what fell over. << We call it the “dead pig”.
  • 10:46:59: RT @infernoxv @AngryBritain Nick Clegg orders universities to lower entrance requirements. So he can go.
  • 23:55:17: Tweeps & peeps, time for bed. Had a great dinner with a friend from LSE,. Great conversation, nice food, now nice bed (alone, of course!)

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Today’s Medical URL

Wednesday, February 9th, 2011

I have never eaten a kebab—and I have little desire to eat one. However, for one man, having a kebab for dinner made the difference between life and death.

Perhaps I should use a kebab as part of the dressing on my foot.

One of the many reasons I’m glad I don’t live in Peterborough

Wednesday, February 9th, 2011

The people I normally see at the Foot Clinic are podiatrists who specialise in diabetic foot treatment. They are all very nice and professional (although they do tend to raise their voices when they talk to patients, assuming we’re all deaf—and many are, of course, but that’s just an aside).

If I lived in Peterborough, I might have been treated by this guy, who seems to have let his Christianity get in the way of his professionalism. Of course, it doesn’t seem to have gotten in the way of his taking on private patients without informing the National Health Service. Funny, that.

From Twitter 02-08-2011

Wednesday, February 9th, 2011
  • 22:55:02: Well, tweeps & peeps, am still in the land of the living but neglecting Twitter. Do keep it alive while I figure out how to tweet again!

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From Twitter 02-07-2011

Tuesday, February 8th, 2011

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From Twitter 02-05-2011

Sunday, February 6th, 2011
  • 12:17:22: RT @BravoH Friday was feeled with a lot of unexpected moments << Unexpected feels may be good.

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From Twitter 02-04-2011

Saturday, February 5th, 2011
  • 22:41:31: RT @Dr_Samuels: “A ship in harbor is safe–but that is not what ships are for.” ~John A. Shedd #quote
  • 22:43:51: @urbanbohemian HWMBO always gets stopped by Chinese evangelists & they even followed him home. He’s much politer than I’d be.
  • 22:48:03: RT @urbanbohemian Even better. Getting to that aisle and realizing they’re OUT of it. AAARRGGGH!!! << Ouch!!

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From Twitter 02-03-2011

Friday, February 4th, 2011
  • 20:21:46: Its power supply managed to fry my NAS & 2 HDD and take a month’s email with it; gutted isn’t the word; it’s &

Recovered some of my email after bad news from the quack

Thursday, February 3rd, 2011

Last night I was rattled enough that I didn’t actually pull my entire Thunderbird profile over from the desktop machine, including the all-crucial Mail database. When i got back from the quack this afternoon, I made a complete copy onto my thumbdrive and copied that to the netbook. Aside from a few glitches, it seems to be working and I can now send, receive, and file away emails.

The quack has put me on IV antibiotics again. There is a new pesky bug in the bone under my second right toe. The rest of the ulcers are healing nicely. They will be doing another X-ray next Wednesday and then have a consultation (yet again) with the orthopedic surgeons. I now have to wait at home every day until the district nurse comes. I may have to give them another box of biscuits. This is for two weeks and we will see what transpires.

Happy New Year?

Thursday, February 3rd, 2011

Yesterday was Lunar New Year’s Eve. I spent the early part of the evening wishing HWMBO in Singapore, along with my many friends out there, a happy and prosperous New Year. Then everything collapsed.

My system was comprised of a desktop computer, currently usable in safe mode but not otherwise, a network storage box, and various other components. I was composing an email to a friend last night when the email program crashed. A bit of investigation showed me that something was wrong with the power supply to the network storage box, and it had fried the disks inside. On those disks were backups, but, more important, my email archives and the active part of my email system were stored on it. All fried.

Now I can recover all emails before January 7th, as they are still on the desktop computer. I am having some difficulty transferring them to the netbook, and will investigate this further later on today. But this incident highlights some issues in life that I have had difficulties with in the past.

First, I keep all emails. Does this matter? I decided last night, after a bit of swearing, that it doesn’t. I would not be happy to lose all the past emails, but losing at most one month’s worth out of the past 14 years will not kill me. I’ve gone through the emails I have still on the mail servers up in the cloud, and stopped emails from groups that I don’t need to get and unsubscribed from a few sales email lists that I never intend to buy from. I shall leave all the emails up on the cloud until I have a working copy of Thunderbird with my previous emails on it. And life will go on.

Second, what’s important in my life? Not keeping emails, that’s for sure. It’s making sure that my health is stable, that my feet recover, that HWMBO remains the most important person in my life, and keeping the spiritual side of my life in my mind, heart, and actions. Keeping emails helps none of these things in particular. My life will go on (or not) independent of whether I am saving (or even getting) emails.

So now I can rationally and slowly figure out what to do here. I think that what is necessary is some sort of daily DVD-RW backup of the email database so that it can easily be reconstructed should my netbook go down. I don’t think that NAS is necessarily the best solution, especially with flaky power supplies that depend on wall warts rather than internals.

I shall be searching teh Intarwebz this afternoon for specific guidance on moving Thunderbird email databases from one machine to another; I didn’t seem to be able to do it last night but it could just have been nervousness. Now that I’ve had a good night’s sleep and a cup of coffee and a bagel, I’m better equipped to face the problem. I also need to migrate my iTunes to the netbook short-term, and to a new computer when that happens.

Long term, one of HWMBO’s and my friends in Singapore offered to construct a computer for HWMBO to bring back with him. It must be a compact one, but I hope that it will be stable and, if so, be a way back to relative eventlessness in my personal computing.

Ho hum, now to concentrate on the foot clinic visit today.

From Twitter 02-02-2011

Thursday, February 3rd, 2011
  • 16:03:51: RT @alanquincey: I feel bad for all the people dealing with ice, snow, no electricity, no porn.

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From Twitter 02-01-2011

Wednesday, February 2nd, 2011
  • 22:21:15: I wonder whether my participation in Twitter has jumped the shark…Will consider it over the next week or so.

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From Twitter 01-31-2011

Tuesday, February 1st, 2011
  • 11:57:55: good morning and good Monday, Twitter. Have been busy last week and keep saying I’ve neglected you. I am just repeating myself, I’m afraid.
  • 23:20:47: @lynneguist I make my own US soups. Carrot & coriander is vile. I also make broccoli & stilton. Want canned consomme.

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