Angelic Paranoia

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I’ve Never Seen Star Wars – October
Sunday 1st October 2017 5:35 pm

As mentioned in an earlier post, this month I will be trying Netflix. It's a busy month to suddenly have access to a whole load of TV (potentially - obviously it's impossible to say how much until I actually sign up). So unless I get ill (which I'd really rather not), the only thing I'm likely to watch on it is Discovery.

I realised the good thing about there being a few episodes up before I start, is that I can then watch those in any order I like.


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Popular things
Saturday 23rd September 2017 12:17 pm

I'm really not good with popular things.

I am sorting out avoiding Star Trek Discovery spoilers at the moment. This is because it's only on Netflix and I plan to only have Netflix for the one free month. So I need to start late in order to get all the episodes into one month. I am only having Netflix for one month because I don't like Netflix because:

  1. It refuses to tell you what's on there until you sign up - what if you signed up and then found there was nothing you wanted to watch? You've then wasted your free month.
  2. Everyone has it.

I've also got annoyed with the amount of Discovery stuff I've been seeing on Twitter and RSS, not that I've been reading it. It makes me feel like everyone is going to watch it, which makes me not want to.

I had the same thing earlier with Strictly, when I saw a stat for how many people watched it two weeks ago. I made me feel like if all those people were watching it, I don't want to be one of them.

It's one of the reasons why I can't stand Converse shoes and you couldn't pay me to wear them. I dislike the way they look anyway, and I wouldn't wear branded clothes or shoes (except DMs if they were cheaper and I wore skirts). But everyone wearing them just makes them that little bit worse.

It's not everything. I wear jeans, I watch Doctor Who, I love Wimbledon. I don't know what the difference is. It's not just coming late to the party - I read A Long Way to a Small Angry Planet and only after that did it seem like everyone was reading/had read it. At which point I wished I hadn't, even though I liked it. It's very irrational. But at least it gives me plenty of thing to try for I've Never Seen Star Wars.


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What a week + Yuletide
Saturday 9th September 2017 7:39 pm

I thought this week I'd get more done than I have. Especially as more things start back after summer next week and I won't be as quiet again until half term. And then it was just a ridiculous week at work. On paper it wasn't busy, but there was just shit going down all over the place and I spent the week cleaning it up. I got to the point on Friday where I couldn't see properly looking at the screen.

Today, though, was a day off, so I cleaned the house, watched people running about in Newcastle and am watching live scores at the US Open (I'm interested in Jamie Murray and Martina Hingis winning the mixed doubles, and Alfie Hewett vs Gordon Reid, but the BBC and Eurosport aren't).

Tomorrow there are more people running about in Newcastle, followed by some more work. I was thinking this would be a quiet weekend, with the US Open finals being on so late, so I'd watch the latest series of Game of Thrones. But it turns out there was other sport, so it will have to wait.

I did, though, think about my Yuletide nominations. I had a not-very short list of 11 fandoms. I narrowed it down by thinking about what I really wanted for them and ended up with The Last Leg, Taskmaster and 40-Love. The latter was at the bottom of the short list because I got it last year but a) you can't have too much of a good thing and b) the US Open is currently on, so I'm feeling all tennisy.

SJA was just pipped at the post when I realised I'm mostly interested in Gita, thanks to Mina Anwar at the SJA Reunion. Which isn't a bad thing, but I went for fandoms where I'd be happy to write any of the characters. Everything else was mostly just there on a whim. And a couple of them where Twitter things that I found I only liked in small doses. 1000 words is a lot more than 140...


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I’ve Never Seen Star Wars – September
Sunday 3rd September 2017 12:57 pm

This month I am going to be trying morris dancing. [info]watervole found me a few local sides ages ago and the one I chose I remembered seeing at the local folk festival last year. I like that they have clogs. They handily meets on a day when I used to have choir, but don't any more. Although that's also the night after ballet, so the state of my legs will influence when in the month I get there - the first couple of weeks of term are always the worst as your legs get used to being in positions they haven't been in since the previous term.


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I’ve Never Seen Star Wars August wrap-up
Saturday 2nd September 2017 9:33 pm

This month I was trying yoga.

I have now found out what it's all about, which is one of the reasons I wanted to try it. It's about flexibility and stretching and relaxing. I have never been flexible and am perfectly happy with that so doing things to improve my flexibility doesn't interest me. Stretching I get, but since I'm used to the idea that you do it before or after something else, getting to the end of yoga made me feel like I was ready to do some exercise, but I'd just done it (sort of).

I don't find it relaxing. At all. In fact I find it the opposite. It's partly because there was so little going on - yes, there was a voice and music and something to look at and something to do, but none of it was that interesting. The other reason was when Adrienne waiting until we were in a pose and then telling me to pay attention to my body. The bits that hurt, hurt more when you think about it, so that's really not helpful. And one of them (I forget which) telling me to move a limb into a pose 'mindfully' which is the most meaningless phrase I've ever heard in my life.

But the biggest problem I had with it is that it made me dizzy. And it's hard to explain, but it's not a normal sort of dizzy either. It's dizziness with a side of that horrible feeling you get in your head when a plane you're on takes off. And it lasts all evening (I only ever tried yoga in the evenings). I thought I'd be ok because although some of it involved putting my head upside down, I'd done that at ballet - in fact I'd done that exact stretch at ballet. But I found it wasn't just putting my head upside down, it was putting it horizontally as well. Which I never really do in real life.

I ended up just doing poses that involved standing up. Which was better for my head, but they were a combination of ballet but with a whole foot on floor, and fencing. Literally a lunge in yoga is a fencing lunge. And there is some actual ballet in there - what was apparently a goddess pose is actually a plie in second position.

I did discover, through a conversation about yoga with [info]selenay that I'm really good at balancing. Which is interesting, given that I have a problem with my balance. It shows how useful ballet has been with that - I've had so much practise at balancing on tiptoes that having one whole foot on the floor is easy in comparison.

I'm going to give this 2/10, because it satisfied my curiosity, but it's just dull.


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Various things
Monday 28th August 2017 11:52 am

I've been meaning to post all week and keep getting distracted by other things. Sadly not sport (mostly). Although the US Open tennis starts this afternoon.

I had a busy week and a half - I pretty much did all my summer socialising in that time. Most of it was Rock Choir, who did some summer workshops. It was fun to be doing some singing when usually everything stops for the summer. There were a lot fewer people than during term time, but it didn't feel like it when we were singing. I wondered why until the ceiling was pointed out. The room we rehearse in has really good acoustics. I will miss that about Rock Choir - the hall my other choir rehearses in is terrible for sound.

I discovered I'll be watching (some of) Strictly this year. I meant to watch when Judy Murray was on, but never quite got round to it. People have told me I'd like the dances, but the camera constantly moving around is so distracting that I can't concentrate on the dancing. And it makes me dizzy. But then I found all of Judy Murray's dances on YouTube and watched them on my iPod and using such a small screen was such an improvement. (I really should try watching Class on there) I did enjoy the dances - I like how they got tennis in it and other stories. I don't know why people thought she was terrible because they seemed fine to me - although I don't have anything to compare it with.

Although I will this autumn. Susan Calman announced on Twitter she was on it. It sounds like she'll be a laugh. And Jonnie Peacock is on as well. And what with them on Twitter (mostly Susan Calman) I've ended up following Rev Richard Coles (after a brief moment of wondering if it's wrong to follow a vicar on Twitter if you're not Christan). Although he tweets quite a lot and I started following him at the same time as the US Open draw and Andy Murray withdrawal and that end of TweetDeck got a bit crazy.

What I've seen most of, Strictly-wise, is the back stage stuff. When I was lodging my landlady would be watching It Takes Two while I was cooking dinner and watching rehearsals was much more interesting than watching the final dances. I will probably tell my PVR to tape it all and then sift through it sometime.

Otherwise I have been getting some jobs done. I now have new curtains in all the rooms (blinds for the kitchen and bathroom are next). Although in order to get something I liked for the lounge and would keep the heat in in the winter and heat out in the summer, I ended up with black out curtains. Since the lounge is south facing and it is hot and sunny out today I'm therefore sitting in quite a dark room. Although it is getting lighter, the closer the sun gets to shining directly at it.

After owning my new computer for three and a half months I finally got tired of turning the old one on to print and decided to install it on my new one. And then I discovered it doesn't work on Linux Mint over 17. And possibly doesn't work on Windows 10 either. It is an old printer. So now I have a new one. At least they're cheap. Of course installing it and getting all the functions working wasn't easy, but it wouldn't be Linux if it all worked out of the box (and who wants something that just works and doesn't let you tinker with it - where would the fun be in that?).


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I’ve Never Seen Star Wars – August
Tuesday 1st August 2017 7:53 pm

This month I'm going to be trying yoga. It's something I've seen cropping up all over the place (or at any rate, being mentioned by all sorts of people). So I was interested to see what it's like. [info]just_ann_now has given me links to videos so I can try it out at home.


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I’ve Never Seen Star Wars July wrap-up
Monday 31st July 2017 9:41 pm

This month I've been using Duolingo, Memrise and Lingvist to re-learn French.

I'm level 9 in Memrise French 1. I'm level 5 in Lingvist, where I know 418 words. Between the three of them those are the only useful stats I can find.

Duolingo is probably the one people know best, on the basis that I've seen various people talk about it and not the others. It gamifies the whole thing, which some people love and I can't stand. This is partly because it's been a big thing at work for ages and partly because I perversely want to not do what it wants me to. So it'll get all excited that I have a 6 day streak, I'll purposely break it. And I really dislike that if you get too many things wrong you can't do any more.

I dislike that it has so many screens and button presses in comparison to the others. When you've got an answer right the other two carry on to the next one, this one requires you to press to say that you want to carry on. Although it also doesn't let you go back. It does tell you in advance what you're going to learn and allow you to test out of it.

When I started it it would teach me some words, then do some things to help me learn them. Then it would teach me some words and test me on some others. Now it just goes straight to the testing. Which just seems bizarre to me.

I also take exception to it giving me a picture of a pair of trousers and telling me the French for trousers is pantalons, which I already knew, and then telling me that an alternative translation is pants. Er, no it's not. And one I had today where the English translation was "Letters, which ones" and I got it wrong because I translated it into proper English.

It also has a thing where you can speak the answer on certain screens. Which is fine an good, and as it says you need to learn to speak French. However, there are two problems with this:
1. It's asking me to speak English
2. It doesn't understand what I say in English

Memrise is the one I hated at the start. It was teaching me really basic stuff I already knew (like please and thank you) and I couldn't understand how it was all structured. I still find the structure a bit unintuitive, but I like that each session it starts with a review of the previous one before introducing new words. And I like that it has different ways of reminding me of the new words before I'm asked to type them.

The biggest problem with it is that I find some of it simple and then keep getting it wrong because I don't read it all carefully enough. So tonight, for example, it was teaching me fish (poisson) which I already knew, but it thinks I don't know it at all because I kept selecting poison as the French for fish.

So far it has just been words, not sentences (I'm sorry is the closest it's come). It's possible it's coming - I did start with French 1 after all, but I do feel a bit like I'm not learning anything useful.

Lingvist is the most restricted, but it acknowledges that it's only there to teach words and that it only has a few (European) languages. But I love the stats it gives you. It tells you how many screens you've done that session, how many you got right, how many new words you learnt. For every word you've seen it tells you how many times you saw it. When you learn a verb it gives you the verb tables.

It's much better than the other two at learning what I knew. If I keep getting something wrong it will show it to me more often, if I get it right, then it doesn't bother.

None of them are ever going to be as good as learning in a classroom with a teacher. In my first year of learning French, when I was 11, I knew a lot of parts of the body because we used to play Simon Says. Although after that year parts of the body never really came up and I forgot most of them.

I don't really know if I'm getting anywhere with any of them, but I have only been doing it for a month, which comes to about 9 hours in total (3 in each app). Which is nothing really, considering I last did French over 15 years ago.

Having said that, I have enjoyed it, in varying amounts and I will carry on, although not necessarily with all three apps. So I'm going to give it 7/10 for the experience.


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Too much sport on TV
Sunday 23rd July 2017 5:21 pm

I've been very watching sport. And some other things, but mostly the sport. Wimbledon fortnight is like Christmas to tennis fans. Only better than Christmas because it lasts two weeks and the shops aren't closed.

Jo Konta was great. What gets me is less how good she is and more how calm she has become. 5 Live played a clip of her and Clare Balding where they were talking about her muffin making like it's tennis. Which was funny. I correctly predicted the men's single's finalists and therefore beat my sister at Fantasy Wimbledon.

Although the men's and ladies singles finals were more one-sided than expected, the doubles were good, as were the wheelchair doubles. Due to rain the men's wheelchair doubles were on at the same time as the ladies singles. So I had the singles on the TV with no sound, 5 Live on the radio, who were covering the singles and were two shots ahead of the TV, and had the wheelchair doubles on the computer with the sound turned down low.

And then Wimbledon was over. It was so hard going to work on Monday without being able to listen to the 5 Live commentary team chat about tennis while I work. The Para-Athletics World Championships helped, though. I have been enjoying that, although I record it all and start it late because athletics involves a lot of chat and a lot of re-running races, not to mention the adverts, and I can get three hours of it into one hour.

Today is the last day of it, but that's ok because the World Swimming Championships starts today. In fact it just started 15 minutes ago, but I am also recording that. After that there's a whole three days with no sport on (that I'm interested in) before the World Athletics Championships start. And I thought this summer would be quiet without the Olympics and Paralympics...

In other, non-sporting news, I got a new sofa last week! It's blue, making it the most colourful thing in my mainly brown/magnolia lounge. It's too tall for Missy to get at, but she thinks there is a way in, she just has to find it. Which means that every evening she climbs up me to get on it, runs about, digs a bit, chews a bit* and eventually slides off it without realising how high up she is, so I have to catch her.
*Yeah, it's not going to look new for long with Missy about

I also got new windows this week. The old ones had gaps between the window and the frame, so the new ones should keep the house warmer in the winter. But the old ones were wooden and it was windy and as a result there was wood dust everywhere. I had to clean the toilet before I could go the toilet. So I've spent most of this weekend cleaning. What with all the wood dust about I've had to hoover everything and wash everything. I ache, my knee hurts and I'm looking forward to going back to work for the rest. But it is so good to have everything so much cleaner than usual.


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Never Seen Star Wars and Not Prime Time
Saturday 15th July 2017 11:44 am

For the past nearly-two weeks my life has been all about the tennis. And I could write loads about it here, but I won't, because I have a couple of other things to write about, and because most people probably don't want to know quite that much detail. But I am writing this while watching the wheelchair men's doubles final.

I've Never Seen Star Wars
Last week I worked out what I was doing for July, since I could fit it around the tennis, I just hadn't got around to posting it, for tennis reasons. I am re-learning French, using Duolingo and other apps. I did five years of it at school and I was generally not that great, I was in the bottom set (of two) for GCSE and then somehow I came out with an A and wanted to do more of it. So I did French for Scientists at uni, which was two hours a week for 25 weeks.

I know an awful lot of people use/have used Duolingo, but I also have Memrise and Lingvist on my iPod, that have been sitting there doing nothing. So I am using all three and at the end of the month I will report back.

Not Prime Time
I'm glad I didn't sign up for this, as it went live earlier this week and authors have been revealed and I haven't fitted in reading any of it in between. But I did write for it:
Leading Lady (1621 words) by paranoidangel
Fandom: Star Trek: The Next Generation
Rating: General Audiences
Relationships: Beverly Crusher/William Riker
Characters: Beverly Crusher, William Riker, Deanna Troi
Additional Tags: Acting, Theatre, Kissing
Summary: Beverly is having regrets about playing the leading role opposite Will.

When browsing through the requests I came across the Riker/Crusher one and I didn't care much for it. But I read the prompt because I was curious and resistate made a great case for them deserving friends with benefits. So much so that I really wanted to write it. I was going to write it for a treat, but wasn't sure how to make me do it - but then it came up as a pinch hit right after assignments going out and I snapped it up. I really enjoyed writing these two so much that I want to write them again (along with all the other things I want to write, and Unconventional Courtship that I need to write after Wimbledon and the Para-athletics are over).


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I’ve Never Seen Star Wars June wrap-up
Sunday 25th June 2017 7:50 pm

This month I listened to Ed Sheeran's album, Divide. In fact, I listened to it last week when it was too hot to do anything else.

I liked that it had different styles on it. I was put off by the first one being rap, because I don't like rap - I like music to have a tune. But then there were two rap songs, there were a couple of slower ones, and generally a variety. Which was unexpected - a lot of artists have songs that all sound the same.

Otherwise, though, it was nothing special. I knew one of the songs and quite liked that. But there was nothing exciting in it - nothing that really grabbed me as having particularly interesting lyrics or a really nice tune. It was just blah and non-offensive.

I suppose being middle-of-the-road is why he's popular. But otherwise I wouldn't mind either way if I listened to him again or didn't. It's like most of the music I listen to on the radio - it's not something I love or something I hate, it's just there and it's all right, but nothing special.

I'd give it a 7/10.


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I’ve Never Seen Star Wars – June
Thursday 1st June 2017 9:11 pm

Since this month is looking a bit busy, I thought I'd do something that wouldn't take too much time. So I decided to listen to a (music) album. Which is something that's been done on the radio/TV series. But also, I tend to listen to random songs that I hear on the radio and don't always find out who they're by. I loved Pandora, because it gave me new things to listen to, but then they made it US-only. I've listened to very few whole albums.

Which gave me a vast list to choose from. So I picked the current top album, which is apparently Divide by Ed Sheeran. Which I'm interested to listen to, so that works out well.

I have heard an Ed Sheeran song once and I quite liked it. Other than that, all I know about him is that he's really popular, not a cricketer and looks like Ron Weasley. So it'll be interesting to hear an album of his.


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Not blogged for a while
Wednesday 31st May 2017 7:58 pm

I haven't blogged for a while. Partly because I've been busy setting up my new computer (I'm going from a Windows laptop and Linux netbook to a Linux laptop, so there's a lot to do), partly because the weather recently has been too nice for computers and partly because my body hates me and has decided not to let me sleep in, so I am tired.

But I have changed my LJ layout. I found that the old one having a fixed width was a bit annoying some time ago and started on a new layout, but didn't finish it. Now I have a new computer the old width has gone from exactly filling my browser to a tiny thing in the centre (my resolution on this computer is ridiculous - and that's after I took it down from 3200x1600). The good thing about having not worked on the layout for a bit is that I've forgotten what it was I wanted to change. So I did a few bits and declared it done. Once I use it then I might find some other things I want to change. I want to change the DW layout too, because it's so very white when commenting, but it wasn't as simple, so I'll leave that for another day.

Ballet is back! Or will be, in a couple of weeks. I have missed it, although when I'm back in a boiling hot dance studio I might change my mind. The dance studio is on the south side of the building, with one wall of windows and is the only room in the building that doesn't have air conditioning. But this time of year it's light enough in the evenings that I can walk there, which is so much better for my leg muscles, if not for my hayfever. It does mean that in June I'll have three weeks in a row where I'm out three nights in a row, so how much else I'll get done in the meantime is another question. At least I have my weekends mostly free because….

Tennis! The French Open has started, which means that I can now tell you how many weeks it is to things, if not the date. I haven't watched any of it so far. The trouble with it is that it has adverts every time they change ends, which drives me mad. I could live with that if they didn't have Jim Courier commenting - he likes the sound of his own voice and makes it so hard to concentrate on the tennis. The best commentators find something pertinent to say that fits between serves, but he can't manage either of those. It feels like the points are just a pause between what he's saying. And to top it off, the cameramen like to swing round and zoom into the stadium, which makes me dizzy. So I pick my matches carefully.

I have, though, been listening to it on 5 Live Sports Extra, for the few matches they've broadcast. It was good to have tennis on while working. Although when Andy Murray was carrying on and losing a set I'd rather have been listening to Kyle Edmund, who managed to win in straight sets. Brits aside, it's looking like an interesting tournament, although I can't see how could possibly beat Nadal. I have the second Friday off and I'll have to decide what I want to do most: stay up for the election or watch the tennis.


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I’ve Never Seen Star Wars May wrap-up (Rogue One spoilers)
Sunday 21st May 2017 4:20 pm

In May I was watching Rogue One. Since I saw it this afternoon I thought I might as well talk about it.

In summary, I found it dull and give it 2/10. The 2 is mainly for the last two minutes. More detail about what I thought, with spoilers are below: Read more...


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All change
Sunday 7th May 2017 6:05 pm

This week has not been what I expected at all.

First, I'm now going to Rock Choir this term. This is because ballet was cancelled for the term (long story), so I thought I'd replace it with Rock Choir. Whether I carry on after this term depends on what happens with choir, because I'd like to only go out two nights a week and having them both be choirs is a bit much. But I enjoyed this week more than last week. Partly because I knew what to expect, but I also ended up sitting at the back, rather than the front, which was a different experience. And it was less repetitive since we went over the song we learnt most of last week, then learnt the bits we'd skipped, which were the hard bits.

Then this weekend I bought a new computer. I was planning to because mine is very slow. There are websites, which if I want to visit them, I open them up, then go away and do something else while they load, it's that slow. But I was planning on getting it after Wimbledon, when things stop for summer. But I randomly checked on the one I wanted and it was a third off, so I got it. I am, in fact, typing this on it. Although in a terrible Firefox because I haven't copied over my settings yet, and the resolution on this computer means I keep having to zoom into websites. And that's after I dropped the resolution - it was originally 3200x1600 and I needed a magnifying glass to see anything.

And I had to install Linux twice because 500GB and 500MB are very hard to tell apart when it's written in bytes.

But those websites that took so long on my old computer open instantly on this one. Mind you, I don't have any add-ons in Firefox yet, slowing it down...

And then, for the first time ever, I picked up a pinch hit for Not Prime Time. I'd read been reading through the requests while sign ups for open and there were a few I liked the idea of writing for, one in particular I really wanted to write. The trouble with not having a deadline is that I don't prioritise writing and instead do the other 1001 things I need to do. So as much as I wanted to write a treat I knew it probably wasn't going to happen. But there wasn't anything I really wanted to receive. So I was very excited when I found the request I really liked was a pinch hit. It was the first time I've ever put in for one and now it's all mine!

I have some ideas, they're just percolating before I write it. The deadline I don't need to write down because it's the start of Wimbledon...


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I’ve Never Seen Star Wars – May
Monday 1st May 2017 12:10 pm

This month I'm going to watch a film. There are a few I have on my list to watch, but given the title of the original radio series I am borrowing, it seems fitting to watch Rogue One.

I didn't see it at the cinema because my main interest in Star Wars is lightsabers, lego and Ewan McGregor, and it didn't look like this film would include any of those things. So I saw Fantastic Beasts on Rogue One opening weekend instead.

But, watching from home means I don't have to sit through the whole thing at once (or even the whole thing if I don't want to) and I can crochet or cross stitch while watching it.


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I’ve Never Seen Star Wars April wrap-up
Sunday 30th April 2017 12:08 pm

This month I went to Rock Choir. It was fun, but it was different to the choir I'd more used to.

Rock Choir say that they don't ask you to read music, which I was fearing meant that they would only give you words and no music. Turned out I was right. At choir, whenever we've had words and no music it's made it so hard to learn anything.

Although having music doesn't necessarily make it easier to sing - I can tell you what the note's called and I can play it, but not sing it. However, at Rock Choir, because no one is expected to know it, it's all learnt by repetition - a lot of repetition. Which did mean that we sung far fewer songs: we learnt most of one and sung through one they'd previously done. Which did make it a bit samey.

It is all pop songs, which is a change from choir, where we never do anything that recent. So it was nice to sing something a bit different.

The most different thing were the parts. In choir women sing soprano or alto, men sing tenor or bass. In Rock Choir there are three parts, which are called soprano, alto and bass, but are really just top, middle and bottom because anyone can sing any part. Which was just as well because at my local one there weren't any men.

Once you join you get to download your part - as an mp3 - you never get the music. But that does at least mean you can practise in the car or wherever, you don't also need to be able to play it (which got tricky for things with seven flats).

I am definitely not going back this term because it will mean going out three nights a week (in a row) all term and I will keel over. I may go back at some later date, but it depends on a whole load of other things. I am glad I tried it, because now I actually know what it's like, since all that anyone was prepared to tell me was that it was fun and/or expensive, which is not that helpful.

Overall I give it 8/10, those two off are mainly because of the (necessary) repetitiveness.


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Things
Monday 10th April 2017 9:37 pm

This weekend we managed to have a rare combination of nice weather, time and energy, so I could do gardening. Of all chores it's the most annoying because it always seems to be nice when I'm busy or don't have the energy, and as soon as it's a good time to garden it's blowing a gale or raining. But yesterday was good and my garden now has fewer weeds, which is always an improvement.

After that I spent the afternoon in the traditional manner of Sunday afternoons when it's nice weather: lazing around reading.

Missy is an idiot. She's an intelligent hamster, but useless at finding food. Hamsters are supposed to be good at finding food using their sense of smell, which is really good. She can't find food when it's right under her nose - she just looks in places where she's used to finding it. Then when she does find it, after I've hidden it among her toys, she sticks it in the sofa. I dread to think how much food is in there.

My hoover died, so I bought a new one. It took me forever to get it out of the box. I ended up having to open it at both ends, remove the vast amount of cardboard that wasn't doing anything (except preventing me from getting the hoover out) and then managed to pull it out. At one point I thought I was going to have to cut the box vertically. I piled the cardboard up, as I thought Missy would like something new to investigate. But she wasn't interested. She's quite keen on the hoover box, though.

My RSS feeds went from silence about LJ to lots of drama the past few days. I still much prefer commenting on LJ because the email notifications tell you the post title in the subject, unlike on Dreamwidth. But if anyone has strong feelings about preferring me to comment on DW rather than LJ*, let me know and I can change my RSS feed.

*Assuming I currently comment on LJ, obviously.


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I’ve Never Seen Star Wars – April
Tuesday 4th April 2017 8:00 pm

This month I'm going to go to Rock Choir.

I've been a member of a local community choir for a few years (I've completely lost track of how many), but it's recently shut down. For now I'm going to enjoy having an extra evening in, and hopefully therefore have the energy to get some more swimming in. And do all those million other things that always seem to need doing.

All sorts of people are very keen to tell me how terrible Rock Choir is, and I have a whole load of other things I could do on that evening, so I am very unlikely to join. However, you can go once for free. So I am going to go on their first rehearsal back after Easter, and then I can see for myself what it's like. Because I'm curious what other adult choirs are like.


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I’ve Never Seen Star Wars March wrap up
Monday 3rd April 2017 7:48 pm

In March I went to Aldi. It ended up being towards the end of the month, as that's when I had the most time, but I knew that when I set it.

I purposely went on my way to somewhere else, so I could justify seeing what the car park is like. The minute you turn off the main road, half of this side of the road is a cycle lane. Except that the road is narrow and only fits two cars (one in either direction). So who thought putting a cycle lane that couldn't possibly ever by a cycle lane is a good idea, I don't know.

Whenever I go anywhere I generally park as far away as possible so I can drive straight through two spaces and therefore don't have to reverse. The car park was tiny and didn't have any spaces you could drive straight through. Which came as a bit of a shock.

The actual shop smelt of something I couldn't put my finger on - it wasn't food. Which might be something to do with half the shop selling non-food items. Which would be fine, except that it's only a small shop. It's also the third supermarket of four in this town (and it's not a big town) and most of the rest of the shops are cheap ones. Some of the non-food things were strange (paint, children's shoes, backpacks, car things) so I'm not quite sure what market they're trying to capture here. I didn't see anything you couldn't get elsewhere.

What with food only in half the shop there were only a few half-aisles of it. The only one I found at all interesting was the chocolate aisle, where I found some ridiculously dark chocolate for my sister (she likes it dark) and some (dairy free) minty thins for me and Mum. Otherwise there were a few things I could probably get cheaper than elsewhere, but the amount it would cost me to drive there would negate the cost saving. There was no free from section, so I definitely couldn't do my normal grocery shop in there.

It was interesting that they had a shelf at the back where you could go and finish packing, which I thought was a good idea. But the tills were odd - they were designed for trolleys and meant there was no where for the checkout person to put stuff after they scanned it. There might have been basket only tills, but it was busy and I just went to the shortest queue.

I also have big problems with where they built it - I'm pretty sure it's not helping the traffic problems when I'm trying to get home after work. So I am feeling justified in never needing to go there again.

As an experience I give it 5 out of 10 - it was interesting, but not one I need to repeat.


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