Just got back from seeing Fascinating Aida with Gideon Hallet and Francesca (sp?). As usual, they were great fun with a mixture of rude, humorous and poignant songs.

Everytime I come across FA, they appear to change the young blonde singer, and this time was no different. Though, since they said she had been with them for 8 years, I'm obviously not coming across them that often.

The Kings Head theatre is a tiny room behind a pub, with very close seats and little spare room for long legs. I had to sit with mine at odd angles so that I could fit. Due to being at the back of the queue to enter, our party got splitup with me and Gideon at the front and Francesca on her own near the middle of the room.

The only problem I had was that they started late, which meant they finished late, which meant I could not catch the tube, which meant I caught a slow bus, which meant I missed my train, which meant I had to take a taxi from Purley, which cost me £20. At least I now know there is a late night option to get home if I'm having a v. late London trip.

You could knock me down with a feather!!!!

For the past few months, I've been reading a comic called Phonogram, all about music and it's effects. I think it's one of the best comics I have ever read, comparable to Sandman and Transmetropolitan.

When phonogram 2 came out, I wrote a letter to the creators about the way it made me feel. They've only gone and published it in issue 6!! While the thought of this possibility did cross mind when I wrote it, I never actually expected this to happen. I now wish I had put more effort into writing it, and I'm in a bit of shock.

Definitely the highlight of the week, if not the month or year.

Is anyone here seeing Jonathan Coulton tomorrow? Fancy meeting up before / afterwards?

Job hunt

Nov. 12th, 2009 11:48 am

Just had it confirmed that I'm not getting the contract job I interviewed for. As expected. I didn't have the testing stuff they needed, but they were otherwise impressed.
I have mixed feelings about that. While I was unlikely to have accepted the role, I think I would have liked to be offered it.

Job hunt

Oct. 13th, 2009 12:58 am

Had an interesting call from a job agent today. A nice sounding position in London, and for the first time ever, an agent actually wanted to see me, rather than blindly fire off my CV.

iPhone

Sep. 19th, 2009 12:43 pm

Having had my iPhone for a few weeks, I think I can honestly say that I really like it and would be lost without it. I just have a few incredibly minor quibles.
1. Charging. The USB connector on my mac book is only powered when it is on, unlike the FireWire connector. This means that I cannot simply plug it in and leave it to charge overnight, but have to use the seperate charger, which means pulling out the cable and swapping it around.
2. The charging cable is too short to allow me to use the iPhone in bed while it is charging.
3. The M key is too close to the delete key, and I keep pressing the wrong one.
4. The beeper speaker is right where my little finger goes, so I keep blocking it and losing the key click.
Apart from that, I think I love it.

Introverted people can be said to be people who gain energy from being alone and lose it from being in crowds, while extroverts are the opposite.
I've always considered myself an introvert, but i didn't find last nights social draining, but possibly energising. Maybe it's not people that I find draining, but being alone in a crowd. Maybe I've been too scared to get over the hill into happy valley.
Yet more thinking to do.

Cars

Sep. 19th, 2009 12:06 pm

Looks like I might be buying a car. At least, I had a quick look around the local second hand car place, and there are a few possibilities.
The thing is, I don't know if buying a car is really worth it. Most of the places I go are reasonably accessible by bike or train. It would help with visiting the family, but apart from that I don't know.
Of course, the fact that the only way I can get around is by bile or train might explain everywhere being easily accessible by these methods. Are there places worth visiting that having a car would causes to visit them?
Hmmmm. Thinks

Well, that appears to have gone OK. I'm not sure I really enjoyed it, but the practise is good for me.
I hit the restaurant a bit late, and had a few problems finding the group, but found them all friendly. As I was late, I ended up at the end of the table with fewer dinner companions than those in the middle, but Max and Cheryl were quite nice, with Cheryl being almost as quiet as me. There were some interesting conversations about comics, computers, films etc. I nearly ended up with the wrong meal, as the waiter was insistent that the dish was what I had ordered. It actually belonged the other side of the table, but I got it sorted out and got my food.
It ended about eleven ish, with the departure of most people, and my heading off to the station. Max offered me a lift back to Fleet, but I turned him down. Maybe I should have accepted. If nothing else, I had a long wait at the station.
Given the level of success that I had, I think that I will try a few more, and also track down the Farnborough group.

How does anyone manage to like this socialising stuff? I'm trying to do it, and I'm flipping terrified. I feel like chickening out of doing this, though I'm going to try my best not to and to make this a successful event.

Going out

Sep. 18th, 2009 01:01 pm

Later today, I'm off to what might be called a mass blind date. There's a social meetup group in Basingstoke, which I just joined, and they've got a meetup this evening.
I thought that I might give it a try and signed up a few days ago.
It's now the day of the meetup, and I have to say that I am more than slightly scared about what I am going to be doing.
We're meeting in a restaurant in Basingstoke, and there will be 14 other people there, abouts two thirds of whom will be female. While this is not a major factor, I cannot say that it doesn't affect the way I am thinking about the event.

Going out

Sep. 15th, 2009 02:17 pm

I might be going out on Friday. Actually, I am going out, unless I chicken out.
There's this social meetup site, which has a social group in Basingstoke. They hold regular-ish meets, and i've signed up, and said that I'll go to a meet this Friday. It should be fun, if it's not too terrifying.
The social balance of the meet is interesting - 11 female and 3 males, which should give me plenty of chances to screw things up.

Dorms

Sep. 10th, 2009 11:41 pm

The dorm here is quite interesting. The personality changes very noticeably as people move in and out.
The number of people using computers, how early you get up, when lights are turned on or off, etc. I suspect that a psychology student could get a full disertation out of it.

After I finished with the castle, I started back down the Royal Mile. The first interesting thing I encountered was the camera obscura. Despite this sort of being deprecated on AFP, I went in. As the weather was bad and camera obscura's don't work too well on inclement weather, I got a discount. The CO itself actually worked quite well and was interesting. In addition, they had a museum of optical toys, etc that was also worth the price. The only problem was the long climb to the top and then back down again.
After this, I had a quick look at the wool mill exhibition, which was a bit of a disappointment.
I then decided to try to find fabhatrix, which wasn't that hard. I had done a bit of wandering earlier, and missed the hat shop by a simple corner. They had a nice selection of hats, and while I didn't buy any this time, I think I will go back and buy a couple. There were a variety of hats there - some very close one ls that remind me of the sort of thing that flappers would wear, and some that were more like top hats. I think I am in love.
Dinner was at Monster Mash again, but I had the steak and kidney pie, which was frankly disappointing.

Got up

Sep. 8th, 2009 01:24 pm

There appeared to be a game of chicken in the dorm, relating as to who would be the first to get up. I didn't lose.
After getting up, I showered and headed out to find breakfast, but didn't find the cafe I wanted so carried on walking to the tourist information to pick up some leaflets.
After that I decided to walk half the royal mile to the castle, bit got intercepted by a cafe doing breakfast of sausage, bacon, haggis, potato scone, etc.
After breakfast, completed walk to castle. Not bad as castles go and I just managed to catch the one o'clock gun, but the weather is wet and windy, so the entire world looks very grey.

After dinner, on the way back to the hostel, I was acosted by a young lady who wanted to know the way to somewhere. After saying that I did not know, I remembered the map thing on this, and with some work, we found her address. Further along, I passed some people playing with fire poi, just a they put them out.

Dinner

Sep. 7th, 2009 09:10 pm

Have found dinner - lamb sausage, mash with green bits and onion gravy. Om nom nom nom.

After arriving at the railway station, I decided to walk to the hostel. Generally a good idea, except that the instructions provided for people new to the area assume a certain amount of knowledge of the area. With the aid of google maps, I was able to locate the right starting point for following the map and started the walk. It wasn't to bad a walk except for the thing I think I am going to have to get used to - this is not East Anglia, and has a lot of up and down bits. Tiring, but I expect the exercise was good for me.
Checking in was easy, except for a previously unmentioned credit card surcharge.
I am in a six person dorm, and there are four other people here. At least two of them are university students. though I don't know if this is a permanent stay or just while accomodation becomes available.
I think it's time to find food and shower gel, the one thing I forgot to pack.

Hats

Sep. 7th, 2009 08:09 pm

One thing I did not expect to be doing up here in Edinburgh was to be buying hats. However, I have discovered a fabulous looking hat shop that may cost me money and trouble in carrying the hats home.

Edinburgh

Sep. 7th, 2009 05:47 pm

I'm on my way to Edinburgh, with about 30 minutes of train time left. I wasn't certain that I was going to go until late yesterday when I booked my hostel space - a bed in a shared dorm. There wasn't really any point in getting a private room, as i'm not intending to spend much time in it.
As usual, getting ready got delayed until the last minute, but again, as usual, I got it all sorted with minutes to spare. As a matter of fact, I'm actually running early due to catching an early train at Kings Cross. Sitting on a train is oddly tiring, and I'm looking forward to reaching the hostel for a chance to rest. That is, if I survive the 20 min walk to get there.

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Simon Callan

September 2014

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