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I’ve Never Seen Star Wars February wrap-up
Wednesday 27th February 2019 8:51 pm

This month I've been reading Rivers of London by Ben Aaronovitch. On the whole, I enjoyed it, although if it was made into a TV series or film I would definitely not watch it.

It was a murder mystery with magic and I like both of those things. I didn't like the gory bits or the sex-related bits (I am generally not interested in reading either of those). I did find the plot got a bit convoluted and I wasn't quite sure how exactly the whole thing ended up being solved. But that might have been a side-effect of me reading more than one book at a time and taking a while to read this one. I spent a lot of the book trying to work out why it was called Rivers of London and eventually worked out it referred to the B plot. It was really specific about London and Covent Garden, which I liked.

However, there was one massive thing wrong which annoys me every time I read/hear it, and that is the police caution. It's not specified in the book, but at one point one of the characters arrests another. The arrested character carries on talking and the police officer then points out that she just said that anything this character said would be used in evidence against them. That's not how it works, it just isn't. For a start, the caution just says that anything they say will be taken down and used in evidence. Full stop. And logically, anything they do say could be used for, as well as against. It's lazy research - the caution is literally written on the government website.

I'll give it 7/10.


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Stuff I love: Sammy
Sunday 24th February 2019 12:34 pm

Stuff I love

I haven't done much of this meme, but I couldn't not include Sammy.

Sammy

I discovered recently that he is tame - the definition is pretty much not scared of me, trusts me, doesn't freak out immediately if you hold him. He has had all four feet on my hand a few times. It's just hard to get him to do it because he's big enough to stretch to get all the food on my hand. He still freezes if I talk to him when he's up - as if he's been caught out. I think he's just not a people person. Which is fine, because neither am I.

He is all about the food. I don't put very much in his food bowl because he gets all his food from my hands or from the food I've buried around his cage. Not that he realises I'm the one who buries it. A while ago he had a couple of days of getting up earlier and went around his cage looking for the food that I hadn't buried yet.

He is pretty lazy. I put a treat in a cardboard puzzle. Missy would have destroyed it in less than two minutes. I make his easier and he finally gets round to them after two weeks. Male hamsters tend to be more laid back and Sammy is as laid back as it's possible to get.

Sammy


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What I am reading Wednesday
Wednesday 20th February 2019 8:59 pm

What I Just Finished Reading
Star Trek: The Next Generation: Hive by Brannon Braga. One of the squares in LJ Book Bingo is graphic novel or comic. I was intending to swap it, but I thought I'd look at the graphic novel section in the library just to see if there was anything interesting, as at least graphic novels are really short. I found this one, which I did not enjoy. The plot was confusing and it was about the Borg which was dull. They had an OC important to the plot who looked just like Beverly Crusher but with slightly differently shaped hair. Plus it's a comic, which I just find hard to read when it's more than just a three square strip.

Sunny Side Up by Susan Calman. It's hard to say what this is about. She meanders a lot, but it's partly about how she's now happy (mainly thanks to Strictly) and how everyone should be more kind. Despite the meandering and hard to explainness, I enjoyed it anyway.

What I'm Currently Reading
Still Dune. Very slowly. It's getting interesting, but hard going. I am half-tempted just to look up a plot summary because I am interested in the mysteries but don't care about any of the characters.

Rivers of London by Ben Aaronovitch. I am enjoying it, it's an easy read. I definitely wouldn't want to see a TV series or film of it, though, because it's a bit gruesome. I am just glad I skim read descriptions at the best of times. I am liking all the police stuff in it, though, with the added supernatural makes it interesting.

What I'm Reading Next
These will keep me going for a while, but I'd like to read the Roswell High books. Watching Roswell New Mexico is reminding me of the series and I'd like to see how similar both series are to the books.


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Clocks
Sunday 17th February 2019 9:22 pm

It's all been going on with clocks recently. Well, two of them. Well, my alarm clock and my watch.

One morning I went to turn my alarm off and the button disappeared into the clock. Fortunately I could still turn it off by unsetting the alarm. But the button that no longer existed was necessary to change the alarm time. The clock is over twenty years old and a piece of it fell off years ago. I thought I'd glued it back on but found that was not the case when I turned it over to take the battery out.

I did consider for a while whether I needed a new alarm clock. There is an alarm clock on my iPod and my phone and my travel alarm clock. And I have one of those clocks that gets light before it goes off. Which I've found good for being able to wake up in the light in the winter, but frightens the life out of me when it goes off (it has 16 volumes, they are all loud). It also doesn't do the waking me up gradually thing, so is useless in that aspect. It also doesn't have a battery back up if the power goes. It does take a battery, it just doesn't do anything useful.

I also don't use it as a clock. It's just too far away and too big, so if I need to know the time I pick up my small bedside clock and put it up to my nose. It also has an alarm, but it's a very unreliable clock and a more unreliable alarm.

My alarm clock is a radio alarm clock, but I don't listen to the radio either. I've had it for so long that I associate the slightly tinny radio noise with annoyance and it makes me want to turn it off the second it's come on.

But I ended up buying a new radio alarm clock for £7. You can spend ridiculous amounts, mainly for the ability to charge your phone with your clock. Even though it would be cheaper to buy a plug. Since the new clock is smaller I've moved it further away from the bed so I now have to get up to turn it off, rather than just sitting up. This is because the traffic on the way to work got hideous so it would take 10-15 minutes extra to get to work. Considering my journey is generally only 20 minutes, that's quite an increase. Since I tend to spend about 10 minutes after my alarm goes off trying to get out of bed, putting my alarm clock further away means I have to get out of bed and am not going back again afterwards. Of course, once I'd shaved 10 minutes off my morning routine the traffic went away and I was 10 minutes early. I've started leaving a bit later and it's all fine now.

On Friday I looked at my watch and realised it wasn't vaguely telling me the right time. Or ticking. After thinking about what a pain it would be to take it somewhere to get the battery changed and how it would cost nearly as much as I paid for it and it didn't look that hard, I thought I'd have a go at changing it myself. I did manage to prise the back off, but broke off a plastic piece that held the strap. I have now bought a tool so I can get the strap off and not do that again. And glued the piece back on - I've been trying Gorilla glue and it is really good. I glued the hoover back together and after it set I couldn't get it apart again when I pulled.

The battery was the tiniest thing in the world and needed a magnifying glass to see what type it was. At which point I realised I don't have a magnifying glass. I found an app for it, which unhelpfully turned the torch on, which reflected off the battery so I couldn't see a thing. I eventually managed to find the battery type, established it's not one you can buy in the shops and ordered one for about £1. So on balance it's probably cost me more than I would have paid if I'd gone somewhere, but it will at least be cheaper next time.


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Stuff I love: Jeremy Hardy
Friday 1st February 2019 7:31 pm

A meme for the month:

Stuff I love

I was going to post about this already, but it fits nicely into the meme. What with the snow today I worked from home, which meant I could check Twitter from time to time. I half-joke that my Twitter is basically just comedians and tennis. The tennis twitters are pretty quiet this week, recovering from the Australian Open and us with a bye in the Davis Cup. So my entire twitter feed this morning were people talking about Jeremy Hardy, how funny he was and what a nice guy he was.

For those who don't know, he was a stand-up comedian, well-known these days for being a panellist on The News Quiz and I'm Sorry I Haven't a Clue. There was a page about ISIHAC I saw years ago about the singing rounds as being funny because the panellists can't really sing and in Jeremy's case, really can't sing. Which just makes his singing funnier - and the audience cheer louder. ISIHAC have a tribute of his best One Song to the Tune of Another and Pick Up Sung rounds at http://isihac.net/jeremy-hardy/

I saw him in stand-up years ago and he was funny. But I particularly enjoyed him on ISIHAC, for his jokes as well his singing. I particularly remember one Christmas special where he did a duet with Andy Hamilton, who really could sing. It was hilarious.


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