Welcome to SpaCeMonKeY UK, the blog of Helen Wells (nee Berrington, aka FieryFred) since 2002.





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SpaCeMonKeY UK

Monday, April 29

Tonight's episode of Enterprise had Keith Szarabajka in it, which reminded me that I still haven't written about Angel or Buffy or even K-PAX, for that matter. I'm not sure that I feel able to talk about such complicated things tonight. I may never talk about them..!

And yesterday I didn't say one word about the Spanish Grand Prix. Ooops. DC actually had a few exciting battles, and definitely earned his third place. He's having to fight for podium places much more than he's had to in ages. Possibly ever, since he came into F1 when Williams were great. Funny how things come around again, isn't it? Williams, I mean.

Kimi's rear wing fell off, which was odd. The Minardis had been having such severe wing falling off problems that they didn't even start the race! Sad. You'd have to be heartless not to cheer the Minardis. I remember when I was at the British Grand Prix cheering on the Fortis. Poor little yellow Fortis...

Oh, and Montoya ran the Williams Chief Mechanic's foot over! It was the mechanic's fault though. He lifted the lollipop, realised he'd done it too early, and stuck his foot in front of the car to stop it. (The fuel rig was still attached...) It was amusing reading his side of the story in the paper today. He said he knew it was a stupid thing to do! Oh well.

Michael Schumacher and his speedy Ferrari are too fast. If Rubens could finish some races we might have a bit of excitement in first place, but otherwise... Hmm.

I've recently been amused by how people have ended up here. Google searches are great, aren't they? When you search for my name this is the first Helen Berrington page that comes up. Which is kinda cool. I suppose there aren't many Helen Berringtons in the world, and I don't think I admitted to my real name on any of my other internet things. But I wonder who did the search? Who knows my real name? Maybe it was James, since he said he'd been impressed at being the first James Nicholls to come up on Google. Who knows. If you're reading this again you could tell me, I suppose. Post on the message board, or something. :-)

Looking at my Bravenet analysing tools, your internet provider is BT. Hmmmmmm.

People have also searched for:
Duane Benzie and the Phantom Menace
Duane Benzie Phantom Menace
Duane Benzie Spaced The Phantom Menace

And the funny thing is that all of these searches were carried out by different people. No-one searched for the actor's real name. Weird. Although I can't say it (or spell it), so maybe that's not so strange. But obviously all Spaced fans..? Good on you!

His name is Peter Serafinowicz. And now I have a Fight Club flashback. D'oh!

And someone who has BT as their provider, I think you came here for the first time from one of those searches. And you've returned to read more of my rubbish. I wonder why. *g*

The search for Ted and Alice was someone in Canada with AOL. So that could have been another Peter Serafinowicz fan. Heh.

I wonder if my peculiar ramblings have actually helped deal with whatever reason people were searching for him for? IYKWIM.

Someone searched for:
"Why the X-Box is"

Now that's an interesting seach. It has potential for all sorts of things, doesn't it? I said "why the X-Box is a failure" on here. Heh. Maybe it won't be a failure forever. It sounds like it has a lot going for it when it gets connected for online gaming. Anyway...

I think my favourite search is:
"Is Michael T Weiss gay?"

That was my rant on Jeffrey. Personally, I don't think he is. :-)

After all that, it would have been quicker to write about Angel and Buffy. And K-PAX. Oh well. ;-)

Sunday, April 28

I felt awful last night, and I felt pretty bad most of today, but now I think I shall write something. I already have loads of stuff I'm putting off talking about, after all!

Yesterday I went to London. Just in case some people are confused, that's London England, the capital city. Someone seemed to think I meant London somewhere else. Odd.

So, I went to London with three other people from work. We'd decided to test this book from work - a curious London walks book. We do all sorts of things together. They're mad. In a nice way. :-)

We travelled up on the Fenchurch Street line, which goes past Hadleigh castle and lots of picturesque seaside gubbins. It took about an hour to get to London as it was a slower train - one that called at lots of stations.

The first walk we did was a Great Fire of London walk. It started at the Monument (designed by Christopher Wren), which is massive! I'm probably stupid but I hadn't realised that was why Monument Underground station was called Monument. Heh. It's 202 feet high, which is the distance between it and the place in Pudding Lane where the fire began. The huge Doric column has has 311 very tiring steps inside it! But the view from the top is fantastic. You can see for miles across London. It was built between 1671 and 1677 to commemorate the Great Fire and also to celebrate the city's rebuilding. That fire had burned for three days in September 1666, and led to Christopher Wren being an extremely busy fellow...

From there we walked down to Pudding Lane itself, and investigated various buildings that had been rebuilt after the Great Fire. Most of them were designed by Christopher Wren. How on Earth did he have time to do all that stuff? Or did he just order people around and put his name to things? I don't know. The tour was basically of lots of old pubs and churches. One of the churches was St Clements, and claimed to be the church mentioned in the "Oranges and Lemons" rhyme. There are so many little alleys in London that lead to buildings straight out of Dickens. Or they claim to be, anyway! It's incredible to think that so much has survived. And even more incredible to think that no-one really ever sees it...

I particularly liked the "George and Vulture" pub, which has to be seen to be believed. I also saw the site of the first coffee house in London, a building that has two mice and a piece of cheese sculpted onto its side (a builder had his lunch eaten by some mice and got the plasterer to immortalise the moment), and loads more things, before ending up back at the Monument.

From there we walked across the river (on a bridge, obviously) and paid a quick visit to the Globe Theatre. Now that's a pretty impressive piece of reconstruction work. We didn't see inside the theatre, and we didn't go on a tour, but we had a cup of coffee there! And it's only £5 to see some Shakespeare performed there, which might be fun.

We ate our lunch outside the Tate Modern, with a rather nice view of the Millennium Bridge and St Paul's Cathedral (a more famous Wren building!). After eating everything we had a quick look inside the Tate. Some things that are considered art are veeerrry strange. There was only one lot of stuff I liked the look of, and that was pop art type stuff. Mostly weeiiiird.

And then we walked across the wobbly bridge (except it's not wobbly anymore - they had to close it soon after it opened since it made people sick) straight up to St Paul's! I'm not sure what I expected St Paul's to be like. It's very big. And needs cleaning. And there were some office blocks being put up right next to it that claimed "finally Wren's great building gets the surroundings it deserves". I doubt that, personally.

A little further on we popped into a bookshop where the owner (rather hilariously) thought that Cheryl (who we'd put in charge of the expedition) was a real tour leader! Once outside again, the next walk began outside the central criminal courts. Now that is an impressive piece of fairytale architecture.

Near to that is another St Clements, and although it doesn't state on a sign (like the other St Clements did) that it's the church featured in the rhyme, I think it's more likely to be the one. It's a fantastic church - the Royal Air Force's church. St Clement Danes. It was designed by (you guessed it) Wren, although it had to be reconstructed after being mostly destroyed in the Blitz. The floor is covered in Welsh slate plaques with different Air Force badges. There are so many! Over 800, in fact. It's a beautiful church. And every few hours the bells play "Oranges and Lemons". Hooray!

We went down the side streets again after that. Past the London School of Economics, paying a quick visit to the Old Curiosity Shop. (Yet another building that claims to be the one featured in Dickens's novels.) We walked all around Lincoln's Inn Fields, admiring all the huge houses that were once lived in by famous people. I think they're mostly offices now. The Ship Tavern is hiding down a little road - apparently it was a good place to hold secret Catholic services!

Lincoln's Inn Fields also harbours the most amazing little museum I've ever seen! It's the house of Sir John Soanes. When he died he left all his collections behind, and his house is full of the most amazing stuff! Original paintings by famous artists like Hogarth, antiquities like Pharoah Seti I's sarcophagus... there's just stuff everywhere! Loads of the rooms have walls completely covered in fragments of Greek and Roman masonry. But the stuff packed in there... it's like some sort of magnificient Tardis.

On our way back to where the walk started, we passed some buses and various other vehicles that were connected to the filming of Dirty Pretty Things. Not something I'd heard of, and there was no activity anywhere, but still.

When that walk was over we headed in the general direction of Covent Garden. We had a look round the London Theatre Museum, since we were walking past it and it was, erm, free. Not all that exciting, but they did have some cheap Farscape bookmarks. (I was thinking I'd sell them on eBay. *g*)

Eventually we got to Covent Garden and saw the usual peculiar street performers. One guy's act involved him balancing a football on various parts of his body whilst taking his t-shirt on and off. Amongst other things. And there was an interesting group of musicians dressed as a guitar playing wolf (I think), a double bass playing pig and a drumming kangaroo. With cigarettes in his pouch. LOL!

After having a rather windswept cup of coffee we strolled into theatre land. Bright lights everywhere advertising various productions, not all of which I'd heard of. Not that I'm into that sort of thing much. We wandered around there for ages before hopping on the Tube to get back to the railway station. Although once there we detoured to St Katharine's Dock (some mighty posh boats moored there, I can tell you!). And we got a closer look at Tower Bridge while we were there.

If you go to the right places, London needn't be the noisy, dirty place you might imagine it to be. It's full of so many interesting things. It's such an amazing mixture of old and new. You look at the skyline and it's old things, new things and things under construction. Or cranes. Lots of cranes. It's a constantly changing environment. Anyway, I really enjoyed myself, and that was with a persistent headache!

That's about it. I missed out loads of stuff though. And I can't even remember a lot of the stuff we saw. An overwhelming amount of information to take in. Fun though. ;-)

And wow, there are a lot of Starbucks. *sigh*

Thursday, April 25

I decided to try Notetab, since James recommended it. It seems good so far, although I feel I'm missing out on something. I mean, I don't have to type all the a hrefs and things! Hmmmm. Is it cheating? Perhaps.

So, I was going to write about K-PAX, but I think I'll leave that again. I don't have time to write anything halfway decent, so I think I'll just ramble on for a bit. *g*

This program has all sorts of weird smilies. Did they make these up, or have they been in common net use for years and I just haven't noticed? Like 8 :-) Wizard and B-) Wears horn rimmed glasses and :-o Singing national anthem and [:] Robot and :] Gleep. What's gleep? I don't even know what gleep is, much less what a Gleep smiley should look like.

I could tell you some top secret WHSmith info. (As if you cared!) Geoff Hurst is coming to visit us on the 8th May, either before or after he visits the evil Waterstones at the other end of the High Street. He's not doing a public signing, though. He's just signing stuff for us to sell. Which is sad, because Hodder Headline, the company that publish the book, are actually part of the same group as us. So how come we didn't get him doing a public signing? Not that I'm wildly excited about it. But I'll still get scared if I have to talk to him. Which I probably will, because he's coming at 4 - 4.30pm, and I'll be at work. Eek.

And the other news is about the new and really expensive lift that took months and months to be installed. It's not working properly. There are two major problems with it. First of all, someone (staff, luckily) got stuck in the lift for ten minutes today. We were told not to close the lift to the public because it was just an "intermittent" fault. So beware! If you read all my archives you'll know which branch I work at. :-D The second thing is that the wall between the book stockroom and the lift (the one that's part of the lift shaft, basically) has a weird thing going on with it. About 5 squares have appeared on the surface. It looks like something to do with the lift is moving and pushing the wall further into the stockroom! And our assistant manager said I was silly for not feeling safe in the thing. Now I feel justified!

I've written quite a bit here, haven't I. I was going to talk about Angel and Buffy but I don't think I have time now. Not really. So I'll put that on the K-PAX back burner. Goodnight!

Wednesday, April 24

Tired. Worked late today. 10am until 8pm. I thought I was going to have to stay until 9.30pm, so I suppose I should be thankful! We were implementing Project Fiction, you see. Basically, if you've ever been into a branch of WHSmith you'll know that the fiction is arranged as follows: sci-fi/fantasy, classics, everything else. Now everything's split up into little tiny categories. So there's sagas (soppy often historically based whatnots), modern (most things that could easily be real life now, really), sci-fi, fantasy, horror, crime/thriller/adventure, literary and classics. On the one hand, it could be really good. Probably better for browsing. But all the customers are going to want to know where things are... aargh! And we don't even have the signs to tell people what the categories are. They're expected next week, I think! Tomorrow could be baaaad.

I went to see K-PAX last night. Wow, what a great film! I think I'll talk about it tomorrow, though, so I can do it justice. Or possibly Friday. Because tomorrow's Buffy and Angel night. *g*

Although Buffy's not so great now. Is it? :-(

Monday, April 22

Here we are again. Wasn't going to write anything, but I might be going to the cinema tomorrow, so...

I set up a tracker like Stephanie's. It seems much cleverer than the Bravenet one I sorted out for Jaffa Kree. I might see what it's like and get another one if I like it. I like weird statistics. Yaaay!

Exciting post this morning. I received my letter of acceptance from Leicester Uni! Hooray! Okay, I sort of knew I was in, but I was still scared. In case something went wrong. I'm like that. :-)

September will see me working away on an archaeology MA! Whoah, scary stuff. I think I've forgotten everything I learnt for my degree. *sigh*

Oh, and the first Series 5 Stargate DVD came out today, which is gooood.

Sunday, April 21

I feel I have to write something fairly substantial tonight. Shadow told me off in chat on Saturday because I hadn't written much lately. Because of me Shadow had to watch Blind Date! Oh no!

So, when was the last time I blogged? Blogged is such a horrible sounding verb. To blog. Noo, don't like it. Hmm.

Oh, I've added a few more links to the sidebar there. Red Dwarf ones and stuff.

Thursday was the last time I wrote something, apparently. So what have I done since Thursday? Friday I worked, don't think I did anything interesting in the evening. Saturday I spent an inordinately long time making a graph for work. It shows how much money we're supposed to take in the book department. I hope they like it. I used many different colour gel pens! And also I watched Bugs.

I kept meaning to talk about that, actually. Last weekend I discovered that Bravo was showing it. That was a surprisingly good show! Brian Clemens had quite a lot to do with it. He was behind the Avengers, too. I never thought I'd say something like this, but it was great until Craig McLachlan left. Craig McLachlan! Wow. Someone from Neighbours was one of the things that made it great. I hate it when they replace one actor with another actor and don't say anything. Do they think no-one will notice? The Due South idea was much better. With the two Rays. Thinking about it, Ed was only really there to get captured in virtually every episode. But still, it was good.

I won't bore you with the rest of Saturday. Tonight was quite fun. From where we were in Ashingdon we could see the planets pretty well. You know, the alignment thing. The conjunction. I spotted Jupiter, which was really bright and high up. And Venus, which was lower down but also really bright. There was a fainter one in the middle which I'm presuming was Saturn. So I've seen three planets tonight! Excellent.

Tonight's other memorable thing was a conversation I had with my brother John. There was a programme on called Trading Places with Tommy Walsh. John said it was monkey man, not Tommy Walsh. (He has this thing about monkeys. I can't really explain it. Our Nan is going to knit him an ITV Digital Monkey. LOL.) Anyway, he then said that monkey man was really powerful. And that he could beat Superman in a fight. Because Superman is scared of kryptonite, and monkey man isn't. Monkey man eats kryptonite for breakfast!

So there you go. Hope Shadow's happy, anyway! :-p

Thursday, April 18

My brother John watched the entire Angel episode tonight from behind a cushion. Sometimes you wouldn't think he was 19. LOL! You see, Mum and I commented on his sideburns. They seem to have been... thinned. Either he slipped shaving (bit of a big slip) or he did it on purpose or someone else did it to him. He wouldn't say. But I'll get to the bottom of it eventually, oh yes, I will. Mwahaha.

Wednesday, April 17

Hey you, (ooh, just had a bit of "One Step Beyond" de ja vu! I won't mention the heavy heavy monster sound. Heh.) I made another gif! This one has a sad, sad story behind it... At this point I'd like to say that Red Dwarf was the first thing I had to tape every episode of. And even now, there aren't many TV shows that I've felt I had to tape. So now you know.

It all came about because I went to see Blade 2 last night. That might not be immediately obvious, as most of the pictures are from Red Dwarf. The fangs confuse the issue, eh? Although I can't see Asad in those zebra style suits the Cat was so fond of. Hmm. I'm not really sure why I made it. And the reason it's so sad is that it took an inordinately long time to make because Photoplus kept crashing! It has this problem, see. It doesn't like it when I try to make gifs using loads of pictures. If I'm just doing background and text it's fine. Weird.

Soooooo, Blade 2. What can I say? I'm glad it had Danny John Jules in it. Otherwise I might have felt sad that I'd spent £5.50 of my hard earned cash on a ticket. Even though the fighting was lovely, I think perhaps they could have elaborated on the plot a bit earlier. Because they seemed to leave it all until the very last bit. Almost as if they suddenly realised they'd had a story to tell and they'd forgotten all about it. *sigh*

So if Danny John Jules has been doing Blade 2 (he was cool, wasn't he?), and appearing on Nightfever (which connects with Suggs and therefore the "One Step Beyond" de ja vu, bizarrely), and Robert Llewellyn has been writing books and doing Scrapheap Challenge, and Craig Charles has been presenting on 6 Music and doing Robot Wars, that leaves me with one question. What is the Secret of Monkey Island? No, actually, that wasn't it. (Sorry.)

What I really want to know is, what's Chris Barrie been doing? I suppose he was in Tomb Raider. (Another film that, for me, was at least partially redeemed by a Red Dwarf actor!) After renaming himself "Christopher" Barrie. That's what Hollywood does to you, obviously. You'd have thought Danny would have called himself Daniel John Jules.

Alias. Quite a few episodes and still good. Woo!

(Okay, I admit it, I only made the gif because I thought of the awful pun.)

Monday, April 15

That was bizarre. Staples have made an advert with a stationery related song that sounds very much like "Who do you think you are" by the Spice Girls. I think that's what the song's called. It's not like I'm an expert on the Spice Girls. :-)

There were those weird Halifax adverts - they're the people who started this song advert thing. With the guy who sings a version of "Livin' the Vida Loca". And other lovely songs now too. Someone thought he was great, obviously...! He's even on the front page of their website! Aaargh!

But there are adverts that annoy me more. One's for Honda. There's this factory that makes OK's. It is, apparently, the world's favourite word. There's a guy who has to type "OK" to make the OK's before they travel down the conveyor belt. You'd have thought they could have automated that. So, the typing guy sneezes (and somehow his gas mask disappears - all the employees have to wear those, for some reason). The dust on his keyboard blows away and he discovers other letters! So he makes the word "Whatif". The reason, Honda, that that could never be the world's favourite word, is that it's not a word. Grrrr.

And my biggest advert I hate, the one that makes me hurriedly turn over, is for something... I don't know. Their advertising clearly hasn't worked. Oooh, I remember what it's for. It's for Smirnoff! You know in the olden days there were guys who told bad jokes and played the piano. I'm not explaining this well, but hey. Anyway, it's like that, but it's a dog. And everyone's laughing, but it's not funny. I'm definitely never buying their vodka! (Those of you who know me know that's an empty threat, but still.) A piano playing comedian dog. It's freaky.

Why do you have to be of legal drinking age to enter Smirnoff's website? That's sillier than not being able to buy things with cigarette advertising on them before you're 18. I broke this law at the British Grand Prix when I was 17. It's all Jordan's fault. *sigh*

It didn't make me start smoking. :-p

Sunday, April 14

Okay, so who is reading this? Leave a message on the new message board, if you dare!

You people who care, I updated the Fantasy Formula One results. The place where it's stored doesn't seem to be working, but I did do it!

Right, so, today was the San Marino Grand Prix. I decided to stay at home and watch it rather than help my Dad sell little boats, and was it worth it? Well, it wasn't very exciting, unfortunately. It's a definite car circuit - the cars proceed around the circuit in pairs. *sigh*

And if it's a car circuit, bad news for McLaren, eh?

If you don't like F1 then my fortnightly ramblings must be almost unbearable! Mwahahahha. But I know that at least one person who reads this likes F1 too. I know this because we were texting each other during the race. (Hello Mark!) :-)

I did enjoy the pre-race stuff. I don't usually get to see it all, because I go to church in the mornings usually. And we don't get to my Nan's (where we go for huge dinners) until about 1pm. So we quite often miss the start of the race, let alone the pre-race stuff! There was a rather good thing with Damon Hill. It's interesting to see what ex-F1 drivers get up to. He's running a Supercar hire car business, apparently! He's grown his hair longer and ties it back - he looks very yuppyish. Hmm. The other interesting interview was with Alex Zanardi. He lost both his legs in a CHAMP car race last year, but he's recovered amazingly. F1 is so safe now that you tend to forget things like that happen in other racing disciplines. Scary stuff.

Michael Schumacher won again, in case you were wondering. Boo!

1) M Schumacher (Ferrari)
2) R Barrichello (Ferrari)
3) R Schumacher (Williams)
4) JP Montoya (Williams)
5) J Button (Renault)
6) D Coulthard (McLaren)

Both the Williams drivers seemed disappointed, which was a shame since they were the best of the rest. As soon as a team's expected to win they're not happy with anything less, are they? Sad in some ways. Whereas Jenson Button was really happy with his fourth place. The Renaults beat the McLarens! Who'd have thought! I like Jenson Button. I can now wear my T-shirt with pride. *g*

I think it can all be summed up with a few of Martin Brundle's wise words. When asked who his driver of the race was, he said, "It's not been a thrilling race, has it? Blundell was good in the Rent-A-Car this morning". It made me laugh, anyway..!

Saturday, April 13

Every day I try to think of a new way to do this so that I don't publish it and then find mistakes. Word is too clever - it formats things I don't want formatted. Typing stuff straight into the box is all very well but I tend to get urls wrong because I make them up. So I'm going to do this in Notepad, then save it as html. I can read it through and test the links. That'll work, right? How sad am I. *sigh*

See, if I'd typed *sigh* in Word it would have bolded it for me. FCOL.

I read a thing in the paper the other day about how children who spend a lot of time on the computer end up short sighted. I wondered if that's why I need glasses now. I suspected it might have something to do with it. Apparently people tend to focus just beyond the words on the screen. Inside the monitor, I suppose. And that strains your eye muscles. Or something. I dunno, I didn't read it properly. I thought I'd talk about it, but I should have memorised the facts. *sigh*

Spent pretty much the whole day messing about with silly website things. I had to update Jaffa Kree with the second half of April's TV listings. I don't update that site enough lately. And I have some Action Man sounds to put on there at some point. When I say I have them, I taped them onto an audio tape. It's getting them onto the computer that's taking me ages...

And the other major thing I did was Pretender Campaign UK, or whatever it's called. I change it every few minutes. (I'm exaggerating.) Originally it was TV Crusaders and we were campaigning to get MacGyver on the telly as well, but I can't do everything at once! I'm not Superman! Although it has been said that I'm Batman. A rumour that I cannot confirm or deny. :-)

Word changes those smileys into picture things, too. They come out as squares when I paste the text into Blogger. Tut.

Aaah, I have to decide whether or not to help Dad sell Pop Pop Boats at the Museum of Power tomorrow. TBH I really only want to stay at home and watch the San Marino Grand Prix. Decisions decisions...

Friday, April 12

Hey, I figured out how to make my archives work!

Silly me. :-p

I’m beginning to think that Tammy was pulling my leg when she said Geoff Hurst was coming to do a book signing. I suppose it’s possible. I mean, would she have gone far enough as to look up when his book was coming out in paperback?

Work has been weird this week. We’ve had way too few people working. The only reason I didn’t have to go down to News today was that Barbara didn’t come in so we were short of people upstairs… And I’m scared of the new lift. I don’t know why. The old lift was evil. It got stuck a lot. And once it plummeted with one of the staff inside it. (Although apparently he’d overloaded it.) So we had it replaced (I say we…). It’s shiny. And I’m irrationally scared when I’m inside it…

One funny thing happened though. A lady came in to buy a Spanish course for her son. She wanted something on CD so that he could play it in his car, so I recommended the Michel Thomas 2 hour introductory course. She looked at the box really strangely, and asked how it was supposed to go in the CD player. Surely it was too big? So I opened the box and showed her the CD’s. She’d seriously thought you put the box into an audio playing device of some kind… The episode’s almost as strange as the lady who came in and asked where the books on the Dettox diet were. (I showed her the Detox diet books, incidentally. And I didn’t laugh in her face. Heh.)

Oh dear. David Beckham’s broken a bone in his foot. What a calamity! (I can't decide whether I'm being sarcastic or not. You decide. :-)

Wednesday, April 10

Maybe I’ll give 6 Music another try. Then I can e-mail the BBC and complain. If it’s still stupid. Which it probably will be. I really hate Realplayer.

And you know what else I hate? The Sky 1 announcer woman. Does she think she’s funny? I have to admit that lately I’ve begun to feel sorry for her. Either she’s not live (I don’t know how the whole TV thing works…) or she’s just very confused. Am I stupid to think she sits around waiting for advert breaks so that she can say what’s on next? Heh. It sounds stupid now I think about it… Anyway, during Alias she said that Fear Factor would be on next, at 9pm. Now, there are two problems with that. One, it was 9.50pm. Two, Blackwood meets someoneorother was on next. Possibly Buffy. This isn’t the first time she’s said completely the wrong thing. Maybe she’s a robot. (Like that’s the obvious first conclusion to jump to…)

My page counter’s gone up an awful lot. Who on Earth is reading this? It can’t be my friends. I don’t have that many friends. :-)

Alias was soooo cool. Quentin Tarantino is soooooooo cool. He’s just the evil suit guy. Even if his voice does sound a bit squeaky and odd sometimes. *g*

Anyone else notice that my archive feature doesn’t work properly? Anyone know why?

Anyone know why I keep italicising things?

Hey, Woolworths finally had some Pez dispensers! (Yes, Pez, Ali, not Sex.

Tuesday, April 9

What a strange day... I went to work at 10am, as usual, but the shop closed at 10.30. We all went upstairs into the staffroom and watched the Queen Mother's funeral there. It was all very moving. And I don't really consider myself a vehement Royalist. (Although if I had to choose between having a Royal Family and not, I'd like to have one. Don't ask me why! I studied the Civil War for my A-Level and I definitely ended against ol' Oliver Cromwell. His plans didn't exactly work. Not that Charles II was a nice guy when he got to the throne. William and Mary were nice, but they never had kids, so... I digress.)

I can't imagine what it'd be like to be part of a family that has to grieve in public like that. Prince Charles looked like he would have burst into tears if he could. Maybe it's wrong for our future King to cry in public. But should it be? I don't know. And Prince Phillip looked like he wanted to hug the Queen. :-(

The funeral service was perfect. The Archbishop of Canterbury did a great sermon. I've never found traditional Anglican services to be my sort of thing, but I don't think anyone could have improved on what he said. He used Proverbs 21 v25: "She is clothed with strength and dignity; she can laugh at the days to come." That's from the bit about "the wife of noble character". Which she was. When she married George VI no-one thought she'd end up being Queen. No-one thought he'd end up being King. But they did. And they had a difficult patch to rule through. Apparently Hitler called her the most dangerous woman in Europe. And she did like to laugh. People probably liked her the most because she seemed more like a real person. Perhaps that's how all the Royal Family should be.

The procession was... amazing, I suppose. Much nicer than Diana's funeral, in some ways. The emotion shown seemed more genuine. With Diana you got the feeling half of the people (at least) were caught up in something almost without meaning to be. It was befitting of a Queen, which is what the Queen Mother was. It's weird because I'm part of a generation that never really thought of her as a Queen. But she was Queen Elizabeth the Queen Mother. That's who she was. From, what, 1936 until 1952, she ruled Great Britain and the Commonwealth.

I think I've rambled on about this enough. I'm glad we shut for those few hours. The people working for Customs and Excise only had two minutes silence. Two minutes silence shouldn't be enough for someone who was our Queen. Should it?

Monday, April 8

Well, not so much to report today. I worked, basically. I had to work downstairs in News from 4pm because they didn't have enough staff. Scary. It turns out that we'll be shutting from 10.30 until 1 because of the Queen Mother's funeral. It does seem weird that she's actually dead. But it's not a huge surprise because she was quite old. iykwim. I read in the Daily Express today that she once did an Ali G impression to the Queen. (She'd watched it because of William and Harry.) She said something like, "Lovely dinner, respec'!" I can't picture that. But it's kind of funny. :-)

Sunday, April 7

I feel veeerrrry tired. I went on an exciting coach trip today! It was to Kew Bridge, which is basically, I dunno, where is it. West London. Possibly Richmond? Just looked up Kew Gardens and they have a handy where to find us thing. It is Richmond that side of the river, anyway. Kew Bridge Steam Museum is on the north bank. Very close. Hey, they have a website! They have a map too! Excellent. Everyone's on the web these days, aren't they. *g*

So I went to the steam museum. I'm not madly into such things, but it's always been a case of balancing steam and older stuff (i.e. castles) when we went on holidays. I've been to things all over the country. Mum and John (brother) were going, and I thought why not? It was organised from the Museum of Power. Which is a voluntary Steam Museum type place. I go and help my Dad sell Pop Pop Boats there sometimes. Wow, the stuff I have to explain before I get to the point. *sigh*

John drove us to Maldon, which is about 45 minutes or so north(ish) of Southend. Still in Essex. And from there we got onto one of the two coaches, and set off around the London North Circular road! It must have taken about an hour, an hour and a half. The North Circular is a very strange road. There are loads and loads of houses on it that are deserted. They're not only boarded up - lots of them have really substantial metal grille type things on the windows. And some are even bricked up! I wonder whether that's to stop the house falling down and taking all the others with it. Because quite often the house next door is still lived in. I'm not quite sure why the houses are like that. Weird.

The Museum was quite interesting. They had a particularly well done thing about the history of water. (Hmm, I hope you can figure out what I mean...) There was a Hot Air Engine Rally, which mean people to do with that were all over the place too. Hot Air Engines don't have boilers - the air's heated directly in the pistons. There was even a little car driven by hot air, which was kind of cool. The man driving it had trouble controlling it sometimes. Heh... My favourite engine was the Maudslay engine. I think it was that one. They were all quite similar. But this one was small enough (though still huge) so that you could see what was going on. And you could see all the pipes that water was being pumped through. The engines are so beautiful. They don't make practical things so elaborately today. Sad.

When we'd exhausted everything there, we walked along the Thames a bit. Walked to the entrance to Kew Gardens, but couldn't be bothered to pay £6.50 each to look at plants. (Sorry, but that's how I feel about plants.) We had enormous ice creams instead. (Meant I didn't feel much like moving all afternoon, but hey.) Back at the museum Mum and I made friends with a ginger cat which we called Dribbles. It was the dribbliest cat I've ever met! John thought it should be called Slimer. But Dribbles sounds more like a cat name. Doesn't it?

Saturday, April 6

I'm currently listening to 6 Music. It's the BBC's first proper digital radio station. Seems to play more "proper" music. The Craig Charles show is ending. He's a scary man. I still haven't been to see Blade 2. My friend Mark (Gauden, jicyww) said that everyone laughed when Danny John Jules came on. At least you're used to him having fangs. *g*

If you don't know anything about Red Dwarf you're probably really confused by that entire paragraph. :-)

Aah, the radio's gone mad. I hate Real Player sometimes. Why can't the BBC use Media Player like everyone else? You can listen to their other stations through it. fcol

I watched Ted and Alice last night. John taped it for me. Which reminds me, I still have an episode of Buffy to watch. See how much enthusiasm I have for that programme at the moment... Anyway, Ted and Alice. It was really funny. It's about this alien who's come to Earth because he's considered a freak on his own planet - because he's not a hermaphrodite. So, he's looking for lurve. What amused me the most, though is that it has the voice of Darth Maul in it! And boy, can he dance! I like him. I liked him initially because he was in Spaced. Which is fantastic. He was Duane Benzie. But the thing that made me laugh about him the most is that, apparently, he hates The Phantom Menace as much as Simon Pegg.

Shall I just tell the whole story? Because I know I told some people, but I think it's funny. You see, in series 1 of Spaced Lucasfilm wouldn't let them use any music, etc. So they just wrote in loads of great Star Wars jokes. Lucasfilm saw that they obviously had a great affection for Star Wars, so for series 2 they were allowed to use whatever they wanted! This may have been a mistake, however, for by that time they'd seen The Phantom Menace. A recurring theme of the series was everyone saying to Tim "The Phantom Menace was 18 months ago!" and trying to get him to let go. He burnt his ROTJ stuff and everything. And he got fired because he shouted at a boy who tried to buy a Jar Jar Binks toy. Heh. So, where Peter (I can't remember how to type his surname) comes into this is that he hated The Phantom Menace too. And he was the voice of Darth Maul!

That probably didn't make much sense. :-)

I've given up with 6 Music. It's too painful to listen to. Not the content. ykwim

My brother said something strange today. He does that a lot, but... He said the Queen Mother must have been annoyed that she died just before the Grand National. Maybe she was. I don't know.

Still no Pez dispensers at Woolworths. Is it too much to ask?!?!??!

Thursday, April 4


Quentin Tarantino is going to be in next week's Alias! I have two episodes to watch before then, though. I'm saving them until I can be sure of optimum viewing conditions. :-)

I learnt some more about Pat O'Keeffe. Apparently he's one of the top kickboxers in the world! He's written a book about kickboxing, too. Someone came in and ordered it. They'd already bought Thermal Image...

But today's big news is that Geoff Hurst is going to come and do a book signing in May! I'd be more excited if it was a Formula One driver, but still. The bloke who scored the winning goal in the 1966 World Cup is pretty exciting. *g*

Wednesday, April 3

Was in too ropey a mood to enjoy my weekly early morning shop. Every Wednesday Mum drops me into town early and I have some gross McCoffee. It wakes me up, I suppose. And then I look round shops. Today I have another job to do - find out Fox's postal address. So that I can annoy them about The Pretender. Distribution rights in particular. :-)

Anyway, today I saw a couple of things that I thought might be good, but I bought nothing. Apart from when I got to work. Then I gave in and bought Edge. Someone left one upstairs a while ago and I read part of it. Then I made a conscious decision to stop wasting time. Heh. So now I have my own copy. Woo hoo! It has loads of stuff about why the X-Box is a failure. Because it hasn't exactly caused as much havoc as the PS2, has it? I always thought one of the plus sides of consoles was that they didn't crash like PC's. But if Microsoft are making the console..?

Tuesday, April 2

Ah... feel mostly better now. If you cared. :-)

I meant to update yesterday but the silly thing wasn't working again. And now I can't remember all the fascinating things I was going to say! I made a small list, but I think there were other things. Oh well.

Sunday was Grand Prix day again! Hooray! The Brazilian Grand Prix. Which always falls around David Coulthard's birthday. Not that it was a particularly great result for him. I mean, sure, it was good. But you know. ;-)

The most memorable things imho were the following: Montoya clipping Michael Schumacher's rear wheel and losing his front wing. (Thus forcing him to fight his way back up the field.) Pele completely failing to wave the chequered flag. (Thus confusing the people who finished first. Was the race really over? lol!) Hmm, that's it. I don't think Rubens will ever manage to finish his home Grand Prix. :-(

I didn't watch the race live, though. My brother got baptised! Which was kind of cool. I got baptised ages ago. 1993 I think. It's not like christening baptism. Not sprinkling. This is total body immersion, as per the Bible. Although I think they missed part of John, so I guess he's going to hell!!! Only joking. :-)

I asked Mark to txt me the results of the Grand Prix. He's great.

And Easter Monday my ickle bro John and I went down the seafront. There was a huge bike gathering! Motorbikes. Obviously. There were a lot of people with what seemed to be bunny ears on their crash helmets. Either that was to do with Easter or something weird was going on... The Southend Shakedown was host to hundreds if not thousands of bikes. They were all the way down the seafront! It was incredible!!!

And we went to PC World as well. I bought Settlers 3. That was probably a bad idea 'cos now I'll be playing it constantly. I had The Settlers on the Amiga. Ah, happy days. I bought Half Life as well. I borrowed it off of someone ages ago and got majorly obsessed with that, too. So better not try that yet. Although knowing my luck it won't work on my PC. Why does that happen? Why?!?!?

He has a bowler hat, go figure.


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