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19th August 2012

Bloody hell it's hot this weekend. Properly boiling. Didn't get to sleep until after 3am, and even then it wasn't until I got a cold flannel
that I could drop off.
I have had my doors and windows wide open all day and the thermometer attached to my alarm clock still registers 29.4C
I had a proper, honest to goodness cold shower ealier. And I went from shivering to too hot in less thn 20 minutes.

So basically, what I have done since my last post was to melt. And watch Shakespeare. Which mostly makes me want to say "don't watch The Hollow Crown". Tom Hiddleston is very good as Henry, that I can't deny. But it is a terrible adaptation of the Henrys, all told. They cut all the funny bits from Henry V, and manage to kill all the comedy in Henry IV. Which is hard, cos it is a damn funny play.  I think, for a start, Falstaff is horribly miscast. I mean, I admit my bias, and I was unlikely to think anyone was better than Roger Allam in the role. But the man won an Olivier for a reason. Simon Russel Beale just isn't funny. And, put simply, Falstaff is to comedy what Hamlet is tragedy. Falstaff is one of Shakspeares finest comic creations, and I never found him funny. Not only that, but he was lacking in charm and you just couldn't tell why the young Hal would be friends with this man.
The other issue was that the focus of Henry IV was all wrong. They focussed on driving towards the battles in Part Two and Hal's interaction with his father. When the absolute heart  of the story is the relationship between Hal and Falstaff. Huh. I get to use my "destroying the languuage of Shakespeare" tag in an absolutely literal sense.

Anyway, enough moaning, because I also watched

Sex, Lies and Videotape (1989)Collapse )

17th August 2012

(no subject)

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So aside from Olympics fever, what else have I been up to?

Well I had my first physio appointment for my knees yesterday and have various exercises that ought to do them some good. I've also been off work sick the last couple of days. Just a bit of a stomach bug really. Nothing that's had me feeling too out of sorts, but the kind you don't want to pass on.
I probably could have gone to work today, but it was as well to be sure. Also it was Friday and neither my project lead nor my line manager were going to be in. I'm not sure I'd have accomplished much anyway. I've been feeling kind of bleh all day so was probably a good idea.

Still, me not feeling too terrible means I have been able to watch TV. I watched the first episode of Accused that was on BBC1 on Tuesday, and it was just *desperately* sad and utterly compelling. Poor Sean Bean.

And today I watched The Best of Men which is about the birth of the Paralympics and is funny, touching and just lovely and wonderful.

But the reason I write this post so soon after the last is that last night I also watched:




U.S. Marshals (1998)Collapse )

15th August 2012

Dear Olympics...

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Before I start this, I have a confession to make: I am an Olympics fan.


...I love you...Collapse )

There was a reason for this post before I started my love letter. It was quite a simple reason, and slightly at odds with my effusive praise of a moment ago. Or perhaps not. I am, after all, British. And so, throughout these games that I have loved, I have kept a record of all of the most ridiculous, nonsensical and downright bizarre things that I have heard commentators (and occasionally interviewed athletes say). I have missed many. There is a limit to how many sports I can watch simultaneously (two if I can give it my full attention, one if I am also supposed to be working). If you noticed any not here, let me know in the comments.

So, a celebration of the great things one can do with the English Language:


...but you can be silly sometimesCollapse )

1st August 2012

Hope Springs (2003)

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It's only been a little while since my last post, but in that time three things have happened.
1) My knee has continued with pain
2) I went to London
3) I caught Olympics Fever. Again.

1) Yeah, so contrary to sod's law, my knee has been buggering painful for the last week. But at least it meant I was able to get a diagnosis. Which was? Wonky Kneecaps. I'm not even kidding. I think it's called Patellar Tracking Disorder. Basically means my patella doesn't quite sit in its grooves right, so it rubs and causes pain. Both my knees suffer from the same thing, the right more than left. Besides pain, there are a couple of other symptoms like your knee randomly buckling and clicking and sliding of the kneecap that I also get occasionally. Hopefully, physiotherapy will sort me out. I had a telephone consultation yesterday, where the woman on the end of the line who I assume was qualified physiotherapist agreed with my doctor's diagnosis, and today they sent me a list of exercises to do. Have also been referred to see an actual physio at the hospital down the road, but of course that will take 4 or 5 weeks. For the particularly acute flare up I am suffering through right now, my doctor has prescribed me some anti-inflammatories, but they aren't having quite the desired effect. Taking the edge of the pain a little but not eliminating it, and for funsies, I am skipping tonight's dose because I was suffering stomach cramps this afternoon, and that is a potential side effect. Realised that I might have taken two doses a little too close together, so am giving tonight a skip to start again properly tomorrow. If I get pain again, then I guess it's back to the doctors. This made more sense when my stomach was hurting more than my knee, but there you go. Will also go back to the doctor if the pain hasn't eased by the weekend.


2)And this probably didn't help my knee, but I spend Saturday afternoon wandering around the Covent Garden / Leicester Square area. Had Ben's cookies, found the tiny cinema shop nearby, wandered around Forbidden Planet and bought comics and the first two Nikki Heat books (the Castle tie in books. Which, by the way, I have read both of and they are fantastic. They are not great books. They are not. But they are perfect. They are exactly what you can picture Castle writing. They draw on bits and pieces of the show, so you can see what inspired him to write what bits. You can see which bits are wish fulfilment. All in all, very clever). And then I went to see Rock of Ages. And guys, it was better than the film. You know how I raved about how much I loved the film? And how  it was wonderfully mad and fantasically rocking? What I didn't realise was that the film was taking itself seriously compared to the show. Let me state that again. A film in which Alec Baldwin and Russell Brand are the cutest couple, and Tom Cruise is a sexy, fucked up, mental rocker with a Baboon called Hey Man is the serious version. The show has no fourth wall installed. The act one finale ends with everyone doing Jazz Hands because the one character who is also the narrator read that that was what should be in the number in Breaking Into Acting for Dummies.
It is one of the funniest shows I have seen period. And it manages to have *even more* awesome music than the film. Also the plot is almost entirely different, but who cares about plot.
Also, Shayne Ward, he of winning the X-Factor about 7 years ago, is in it playing Stacee Jaxx (Tom Cruise's character), and you know what? He is FANTASTIC. Really great.It just makes me sad that Justin Lee Collins was having his day off. Because it was one of those casting choices that just made me go o_O and now I really want to see what he did with it.
Although the real star of the show is the guy playing Lonnie, the narrator / Russel Brand's character. Basically, he steals. Every. Single. Scene that he is in. And it. is. GLORIOUS.
Is it going to take a place in my top 3 all time favourite musicals? No. Would I pay to see it again? Hells to the YES!

3) You don't have to know me very long to know I'm not really a sporty person. Know me a bit longer and you discover my fondness for Rugby Union in general and the 6 Nations in particular. However, you have to be around me for a very specific two weeks every four years to discover that during the Summer Olympics I become something of a sports nut. I will track the British medal table daily. I will watch any sport where there is a Brit playing if there is even the slightest hope of a medal. I will briefly become an expert on whatever sport I am currently watching, and most importantly, I will become a store for pointless facts. This year, I have both the official 2012 app and the BBC olympics app on my phone. I check the schedules nightly to set reminders for every event the next day that a) will be awarding medals and b) has someone on Team GB competing. I have had various events on in the background whilst I have been working most of the day. And I have been staying up far too late to watch the daily round up.
It all started during the 2004 Athens Olympics when I was 15. That summer my dad had had a double hernia operation, and so was basically stuck sitting in a chair for about 6 weeks whilst he recovered. My brother was thus being looked after elsewhere, and I had bugger all to do, so I would go over as much as I could to keep him company. During this, the Olympics was on. And so, me and Dad watched a *lot* of Olympics. He was watching it every day, basically everything that was on, so would be able to tell me all the random facts about everything. And it was that year that sparked my interest. That was the year where I discovered, to paraphrase John Finnemore's fantastic bit on the subject on The Now Show Olympics Show, that watching people do anything exceptionally well is utterly brilliant.
Unapologetically, I will say I love the Olympics.
And then there was the Opening Ceremony. I think even the most cynical of people were thawed by that. It was one of the most wonderful, uplifiting, and simply fantastic events I have ever seen. A glorious celebration of everything that makes me proud to be British.
I think we dun good this time.


Anyway, on to the review!

Hope Springs (2003)Collapse )

27th July 2012

Withnail & I (1987)

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Told you I'd get to review a few more over the summer. Although as I start to type this, its is quarter to 8, or 25 minutes before the Olympic Opening Ceremony starts, so who knows when I'll get round to finishing it. I know all the cool kids are cynical about the Olympics, but I shall be watching the Opening Ceremony with pleasure because a) I am genuinely looking forward to it and b) one of my work friends is in it.

This week has been a good week. Mostly. Actually, what it mainly was was yesterday was damn fine, and the rest of the week was average to poor.

Yesterday was great. Got into work about 10 to 10, a little later than hoped for but not unreasonable. Did some work for about half an hour, then realised I had to submit some our project code for the internal release deadline at 11, so spent about 20 minutes merging code. At 11 we had a team brief that took almost an hour, then back to work again until 12.30, when we all knocked off early to go to a local pub for a company paid for BBQ for the afternoon. Lovely food. Lovely drinks (not provided) and an entirely pleasant afternoon sitting in the sun chatting with colleagues. I discovered that one guy has a Dalek cupboard in his house. No joke, when they were re-modelling, one of the specs they gave to the architect was it had to have room to house a Dalek. Which is kept almost entirely to surprise people as they exit the downstairs loo.

Then, just after 5, we went back across town in order to go to a different pub where a couple of guys were having their leaving do. I'm quite sad they are leaving, actually. We get on quite well and I would consider them work friends. They are part of the usual Friday pub lunch crew, so I've spent more social time with them than a lot of other people in my office. They were two of the... biggest characters in the office and they place will be quieter without them. They have been there for years and are well known and liked so there was a good turn out, including quite a few people who had previously left the company, which meant I got to meet an ex-employee who has become the stuff of myth and legend, and discovered he is exactly as described.
Anyway a couple of hours there, we wandered down to a nearby curry house where the guys who were leaving very kindly paid for us to have a very fine curry, and thence off to another pub for one last round before I finally got home around midnight.

So total tally for yesterday: Time doing actual coding: 1.5 hours. Time spent eating, drinking and generally relaxing with colleagues: 10.5 hours.

As I said. Damn fine.

Today was pretty meh in comparison, and the weather has been a lot more humid today, so I was quite glad it was over. Had a pretty decent driving lesson this evening but got rather hot and sticky doing so.

Oh, and on Monday I buggered my right knee. I occasionally get twinges in it, that are painful for a day or so. I've never quite worked out what sets it off, but it's been going on for 3 years or so. I have dubbed it (due to a slightly convoluted in joke) Sympathy Javert Knee. Anyway, Monday at choir, I was standing singing and something went twing. I can only imagine that I twisted it strangely somehow. It hurt a little more than normal, but I didn't think much of it. Anyway, it's Friday now and it's still hurting, so I'm going to the Doctors on Tuesday. Sod's law says that it'll be fine by then, of course.

And tomorrow, I am going to see Rock of Ages! I have an excite! I admit that going to London on the first Saturday of the Olympics was perhaps not my smartest move, but by golly am I looking forward to it!

And speaking of the theatre, I think I have convinced my mum to see Shakespeare by the power of ranting.
When I was home last I mentioned that I wanted to go and see Henry V at The Globe and was trying to find people to go with me. I was somewhat surprised when my mum said that she'd join me. Shakespeare is really not her thing. She'll go to the occasional musical, but she doesn't share my love of theatre.
What she has had, however is the... pleasure of being subjected to my rants on the subject of how I love Shakespeare and think it is a terrible shame that so many people are put off by school, and how if you just see it acted, you see it come alive and so on and so forth. And I think, I think I might have convinced her to give it a go.



Withnail & I (1987)Collapse )

5th July 2012

Decepiton (2008)

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Goodness, what a jolly long time it's been since I did one of these.

Why has it been so long? Honestly, no real reason. Just, I've not really got round to it. Over the years I've amassed quite the collection of TV shows I watch on a regular basis and between that and work and driving lessons and occasionally having a social life and travelling and everything, my love film watching has fallen by the wayside somewhat.

But now it is summer hiatus, and this leaves me with a little more free time with which to indulge. Of course, the observant of you will have noticed that summer hiatus began a while back, so why has it taken so bally long to do this one? (forgive me, I've been reading Jeeves and Wooster fic just now)

Well, see what I have been doing is mostly aquiring new fandoms. You're surprised I can tell.


Hawaii Five-0Collapse )

My second new fandom has blindsided me rather. I went to see Rock of Ages a couple of weekends back with a couple of friends thinking it would be quite an entertaining couple of hours. I now have the soundtrack, have compiled a playlist of original tracks and am going to see the West End show in a few weeks. And may have spent part of today’s sick day watching a very dodgy quality extra legal version because my local cinema isn’t showing it any more and I require rocking out occasionally.
Rock of AgesCollapse )

And my final new fandom did the opposite of blindside me. It’s something I knew, I hoped, I prayed I would like.  I talk of course of Aaron Sorkin’s new show, The Newsroom. And I’m calling it. 10 minutes into the second episode I called it. Officially, I love the show.


The NewsroomCollapse )


Anyway, I have burbled on for far, far too long already. Time to get to the review.


Deception (2008)Collapse )

10th June 2012

Coulson Lives...

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Fandom: Avengers, duh.
Summary: Coulson lives. And boy, is he pissed at what Fury did...

Notes: Um... so I was walking to work and thinking about all of the awesome Coulson Lives stuff that Clark Gregg has been retweeting (and you should all totes follow him because awesome) and then this all just popped into my mind and I wrote it on my phone at work whilst I was waiting for code to compile.

So. Unbetad. And, you know, I wrote it on my phone at work whilst I was waiting for code to compile.


Coulson blinked, screwing his eyes against the harsh white light...Collapse )

5th June 2012

For fucks sake. I would be ranting about this on Twitter, but my dad follows me on there now, and I don't want this to ruin my day.

 

Dad and everyone are coming to visit me today. Originally, their text said they would come "late morning". So, having spent all day yesterday cleaning (not that I mind that too much, as my flat really did need a proper clean) I get up this morning, tidy up a few last bits, and settle down to wait. Then, not five minutes ago (about 20 to 12), I get a phone call telling me they haven't left yet, but they'll let me know when they do.

 

It's a 2 hour drive if you don't hit traffic. So, late morning has turned into mid afternoon, and instead of the day I was looking forward to spending with my family, I get a handful of hours. The half formed plans I had of what we could do kind of go out of the window, and I've been waiting for the last two hours for nothing.

 

I wouldn't mind, but if they'd just *told* me earlier, then I could have adjusted my plans. I could have planned to do something this morning. Ok, I probably wouldn't have done, but it would have been nice to *know*.

 

Oh, and they want to go for lunch when they get here. So I can't eat for a couple of hours.

 

*sigh* As I said, I want to enjoy this time with my family, so I'm gonna try and shake this pissed off before they get here. I'll go for a run in a bit, and maybe make some biscuits after that. I'll see how I feel.

19th February 2012

I, Witness (2003)

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So what has occurred since last I posted?

Well, my father continues to follow me on twitter, but I tend to forget until he mocks me for spelling / grammar errors, so really, it could be much worse.

I have had a series of awesome weekends. First I was in Cardiff, and that was just great, as it always is.  I need to retreat to my geek space every so often, and it always just makes me feel better, seeing everyone. Even though I got far too little sleep, a fact I have only really just caught up on. But the lack of sleep was important! Because me and bethan_b_bad got to introduce plum177 to the wonders of The Mrs Bradley Mysteries. For those of you who don't know, this was a very short lived series of murder mysteries set in the 20s starring Dame Diana Rigg as Mrs Bradley and Neil Dudgeon as her chauffeur George, and it was on when I was about 10. It's always great when you can go back and find things you loved as a kid, and they turn out to be as good as you remember. Even better when you can introduce someone new to them, and they love it too. It was this show, I think, that started my fascination with the 1920s. It was probably my gateway drug to Agatha Christie as well. Watching it back, I'm not sure how I ended up watching it, because there were only 5 episodes ever, and its not really my parent's cup of tea, but nevertheless, it ended up being the show I was allowed to stay up and watch as a special treat. It was also the first show I remember watching mostly because I shipped characters in it. Because I shipped Mrs Bradley and George like burning. I still do. It's kind of impossible to watch the show and not. And there seems to be one person on the ENTIRE INTERNETS that writes it. I mean, what?!

Anyway, that was a rather unexpected side note. My second awesome weekend was when 6 old friends from home came up to visit. The original plan was they would come up, we'd wander about the town, go out for dinner, then find a pub to while away the hours in. But this was the weekend it snowed, and we all decided it was far too cold to go out, so we ordered pizza and stayed in the flat drinking and chatting. It was a really nice catch up, and we proved it was in fact possible to sleep 6 people on my floor, relatively comfortably. Not something I would have guessed.

Then last weekend I went home to see one set of parents and had a fake!Birthday which involved presents and cards and cake and going to a world buffet in Staines that my stepdad had been dying to show me, which was very nice, but nevertheless, involved going to Staines.

So that was the other thing that happened to me, I turned 23. I am now the same as as my mother was when she had me, and if that isn't a weird thought, I don't know what is. It was the oddest birthday I have thus far had, as it is the first I have spent both a) in work, and b) away from all of the people I care most about; my family, and my closest friends.(Last year I took my birthday off and stayed with parentals, you see) But I went out for dinner and a couple of drinks with some of the other grads from my office, so it could have been worse.

And it was greatly improved by what happened the night before. On the Sunday I was travelling back from my mother's when a friend of mine put the word out across twitter that they had ended up with a spare ticket for Noises Off on Monday night. I spent about 5 minuted deliberating about whether I should go, as it meant missing choir for the third week in a row, but then I realised, it was Noises Off.  I love the show, it is one of the funniest plays I have ever seen, so there was no way I couldn't go. And so I did. And it was brilliant. By the time the curtain fell I was physically exhausted from laughing so much. That is the sign of a good show, I think you'll agree :) I kind of want to see it again now.

And the final thing of interest is that I got a new phone! It is amazeballs. It was so weird. One Friday at work I was complaining that it was at least another 6 weeks before I could upgrade, which was close enough for me to keep thinking "I can upgrade soon" but far enough away to still be a long wait. Not three hours later, I got a call from my provider, asking me if I'd like to upgrade early! Ended up getting a much better phone than the one I was hoping for, and it arrived on the following Monday. V happy all round, really.

So anyway, on with the latest LoveFilm film.


I, Witness (2003)Collapse )

26th January 2012

And I can't even tweet about it, as was my first instinct because he will *see*!

Ah, well, I shall attempt to not let it affect my tweeting. Apart from posting about my family...

Perhaps he will get bored after a couple of weeks as so many people do. Or a good round of #startrek tweets may be enough :)

Meh, at least it's my dad and not my mum.


...this is, like, my last corner of the internet that hasn't been invaded by family, or become lame. Maybe I should set up a Google+ account?
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