Angelic Paranoia

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Tennis and other things
Sunday 29th January 2017 4:03 pm

I am sad that the Australian Open is now over. It was good, although people had a tendency to interrupt at work on matchpoint. At least this morning's final was uninterrupted. If only because I didn't get dressed until after it was over - it was just too exciting to miss! It was good to see Roger vs Rafa again and I wish they could both have won.

Next weekend is the Davis Cup, but it's annoyingly in Ottawa, which means it'll be in the evening and night. If it goes to a fifth rubber staying awake will be hard.

I really want to go to Wimbledon. It's been years since we got anything in the ballot - if we don't get anything this year we might just go and queue on a quiet day.

I should be spending some of the weekend writing or catching up on TV. I haven't been doing very well on that, but I have done a lot of random surfing and YouTube video watching. Which weren't really on my to do list...

My Chocolate Box fic is finished and in beta. I uploaded it then couldn't think of a title, so it's still in draft format on AO3. I have some treats I have ideas and bits of fic for, I just need to get round to writing them.

For Het Swap there are two people I can write for. I have bits of ideas for both of them, so hopefully I can make one of them into a whole idea, whichever one I end up getting assigned to.


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What I am reading Wednesday – Australian Open
Wednesday 18th January 2017 7:00 pm

I am excited about the Australian Open. it feels like the tennis season has really started now. But what's made me particularly excited is that I bought a digital radio, so I can listen to the evening session on 5 Live Sports Extra in the mornings at work. As much as it's good that The Tennis Podcast is doing daily episodes, it's not as exciting as listening to it at the time when no one knows who is going to win.

What I Just Finished Reading
Into Exile, A Proper Place and Hostages to Fortune by Joan Lingard. These are the Kevin and Sadie stories set after they leave Belfast in Across the Barricades. I read them in a weekend, which tells you how much I liked them (plus how short they were...).

It was interesting to see how they were surviving on their own in England and how the pressure from their families, and their lack of money and stability affected them and their relationship. I was rooting for them to stay together, but it could have easily gone another way at quite a few points.

This is set in the 1970s when it was written, so it was also interesting to see that time, where telegrams were the best way of getting a message to someone quickly, for example. And Sadie does all of the cooking and housework, despite them both having jobs (at least to start with, until she complains at Kevin about it).

The thing I struggled with was that I found it hard to relate to because they get married between books 2 & 3 when Sadie is 17 and Kevin is 19 (I think). I can't imagine being married at that age.

What I'm Currently Reading
The Twelfth of July by Joan Lingard. I decided to leave the first book until last, to see how they first met. I am rationing myself with this one, to make it last. So far it's interesting, but since Sadie's only 13, there's not going to be romance in it. But there is more of the religious troubles and fighting and bits that I liked in Across the Barricades.

What I'm Reading Next
I'm trying to resist re-reading Across the Barricades. I discovered there's a trilogy of Librarians books, although only the first is out. It's $21 for the hardback on amazon.com or £22 for the hardback on amazon.co.uk. So that's not a rip-off at all... Not that the paperback is out yet, but it's £8, which is a bit steep for a book, even a new one.


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Not posting
Sunday 4th December 2016 8:35 pm

I've been putting off posting because I've been feeling guilty for not having really done anything. My productive writing October turned into not really writing November.

The story written for me for Public Call went live:
This Definitely Isn't Croydon (1196 words) by ginger_timelady
Fandom: Doctor Who & Related Fandoms
Characters: Sarah Jane Smith, Harry Sullivan
Summary: The Doctor has left Sarah Jane on Earth, and it isn't in Croydon. Yet somehow, it's where she needs to be.

I got through season 1 of The West Wing. And then took ages before I started season 2 and felt guilty for leaving Josh dying on the pavement for that long.

This weekend I went to the Albert Hall to see the tennis. The trains were horribly busy, which I seem to remember hating last year too. So the journey was horrible, but the tennis was fun. There was one particularly hilarious point with the exhibition doubles where all four players ended up on the same side of the net.

Hawkeye equivalent was everyone in the crowd holding up a sign saying In or Out and the umpire deciding which there was more of. Santoro was a bit miffed that the crowd were on Rusedski's side. They were even more on Bahrami's side, who successfully challenged a ball that was a long way out. He hit two balls up so high they didn't come back.


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Things
Sunday 20th November 2016 4:29 pm

On Wednesday I sneezed and made my pulled muscle worse. And then on Friday it was suddenly so much better. At first I thought switching from paracetamol to ibuprofen had made the difference, but then it never got more painful after that.

I have had a busy weekend, getting lots of things done. I learnt that hoovering with my left hand hurts just as much as hoovering with my right, but hoovering with both was better. I went to the pet shop and wanted to take all the rabbits home. Especially one that came to see me when I spoke to them, and then licked the glass.

I bought Missy a toy that hangs up and has wooden things on it. It's the sort of wood she likes chewing, but she's spent most of her time with it on the string - she doesn't like hanging things, she always takes them down. It's safety pinned to the sofa, so it'll take her a little while as she can't spend the whole night working on it.

I got my Public Call fic done, which was just as well given that the deadline is this evening. I've also finished my Yuletide fic, for a given value of finished, given that I keep tinkering with it.

And I've started rewatching The West Wing. Since my pulled muscle means it hurts to laugh I had to find something that wasn't funny. And since I've been watching a lot of funny stuff on catch up, I keep using up my internet, so it had to be something I didn't need to stream. I've been wanting to rewatch The West Wing since I introduced my parents to it a few years ago and then caught an episode when I was home one weekend. I keep racing through it, partly because there's not a lot on at the moment, partly because I want to get to the bits I vaguely remember, but don't know when they are (and I am avoiding episode guides because I don't want to know in advance).

It was only after I started that I looked at my DVDs and thought that I should have considered The Bill - I have quite a few DVDs of half hour episodes from the 80s that I haven't watched. Or The Avengers - I have all the Emma Peel episodes and I've seen all the ones 'in color' but I can't remember which black & white ones I've seen. But now I've started The West Wing, I'll finish it first.

Of course this week has been tennis. I am disappointed that they won't show the doubles (of course) or the evening matches, and that Jamie and Bruno got knocked out in the semi-finals. But it is exciting that they're the number one doubles team this year. And Andy is the number one singles player this year. There's just the match in a couple of hours to decide who ends up number one in the rankings. I am hoping for a Murray victory of course, but I'd like either a decisive Murray win or a very close match with either winning. And come February there'll be another round of Murray vs Raonic when we play Canada (away) in the Davis Cup.


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Tennis
Sunday 13th November 2016 5:13 pm

After a week's 'rest' my pulled muscle seems to have settled down to a low level pain and I'm getting used to doing more things with my left hand. Although if it still hurts next weekend I'm going to have to try hoovering left handed - which I have attempted before and found it really hard.

But there is tennis this week, which makes everything more exciting. And it is more exciting than usual - Murray could be back down to number two a week on Monday. And Jamie & Bruno could end up the number one doubles team. Who knows!

Although this afternoon's match didn't live up to the promise of the first set. However, it was interesting to see Dominic Thiem play because I'd heard of him, but never seen him play before.

Although I wish they'd make players wear different colours - I spent half my time being confused as to which was which, especially in that long tie break. The only way I could tell was that I can recognise Djokovic's playing style.

Before it started I wished I was going to the O2 to see it. And then once it had I remembered why I was glad I wasn't: it's expensive and you only get to see two matches, you have to sit in the dark, it takes ages to get there, and they got silly about taking food and empty water bottles in there. I am instead going to see the old gits at the Albert Hall next month. Far more fun.


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Paralympics
Tuesday 13th September 2016 7:52 pm

The Paralympics is on, which is why I don't really have the time for anything else. Despite there not being as much to watch as the Olympics all the good stuff is late at night, which has meant I've been staying up later than I intend to. The adverts are a pain, although I am getting used to them. But not so much that I will watch them any time before the next Paralympics.

Technically this weekend is my only free weekend this month, but since it's also the Davis Cup, I don't know how I'm going to fit all this sport in, even without going anywhere. To say nothing of needing to clean the house and do some gardening.

In other news, I got the exact fandom and pairing I was hoping I'd get for femslash. I have some ideas, I'm just waiting for the sport to stop so I have some time to write. I also did well in my assignment - there weren't many people I could have matched with but all the others had no prompt and/or letter.

There is so much on TV now it's September. I haven't watched most of it, what with there being sport on TV. But I am more used to watching TV around Missy playing in the evening (largely because her idea of playing consists of sitting in her cornflake box, but still), so maybe I'll actually catch up with some on weekdays I'm in. But since next week is my first week of going out three nights, I don't know if that'll happen...


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Distracted by sport
Wednesday 24th August 2016 7:51 pm

I might have been a bit distracted by the Olympics and not posted. And by might I mean was. And still am - since it finished I've watched the men's triathlon, diving, BMX. I still have plenty to catch up on - I should be finished by the time the Paralympics start...

I have managed some non-Olympics things in the past couple of weeks. The weekend before last I went to the Nine Worlds convention. Last year I generally wasn't impressed with it, but loved the Whedon Singalong enough to go back. This time they only sang a selection of songs in the Whedon Singalong, which didn't include my favourites. And I liked the rest of the con less. So next year I might just be going to the Whedon Singalong, if they return to singing all the songs.

While I was there, Missy was having a holiday with my sister. They both enjoyed it, except for when my sister had her in-laws round and Missy wasn't happy that there were people in the house and she wasn't being played with.

I went through a whole load of my cards. Back in uni, when we had Wednesday afternoons off for sport, I spent it playing the Star Trek customisable card game. I haven't played it since I left, but I have a lot of cards. Also, quite a few Magic cards, Young Jedi (which I don't even remember playing), Attack of the Clones cards, the Dilbert card game (which at least is just a normal card game), a pack of Original Series Star Trek cards. And a booster pack of Harry Potter cards. The TOS cards are confusing because they're in a box that states it contains 65 cards including Kirk, Spock, McCoy & Enterprise + a rulebook. It actually contains more than 65 cards, none of which are Kirk, Spock or McCoy and no rulebook. I don't remember playing this one either.

Going through my Star Trek cards brought back memories of playing it. I'm pretty sure in one of the boxes was the deck I last played at a tournament where I assimilated Earth. Which is pretty much all I remember of how to play it. I just have to decide, with all of these cards, whether to sell/get rid of them, keep them as a collection (and get rid of the duplicates) or keep them and play them. But right now I'm enjoying cataloguing them and putting them in order. And trying to convince myself that I don't need to buy any more...


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Olympics
Sunday 7th August 2016 2:31 pm

It's the Olympics! Although annoyingly, so far Kyle Edmund's first match was not on the TV or BBC Sport website anywhere. And the only way to find out who is playing when for tennis is on the official website - the rest will either just tell you the country and/or try and tell you the time. I want to know who from what country is playing and work out for myself when they might be playing. Although the answer to today's interesting matches is 'at the same time as everything else I want to watch' (ie gymnastics and fencing).

It hasn't all been about tennis. Tennis is a bit of an odd sport at the Olympics because tennis is rarely about which country you play for and matches go on for such a long time you could just watch tennis and never see anything else.

There is also swimming. The finals are annoyingly in the middle of the night, due to American broadcasters. But it is at least on the website (and repeated in the mornings). This morning I saw Adam Peaty's 100m breastroke semi-final three times, so I am sure I can manage to watch the final before work. As long as I can also avoid knowing the result...

And there's fencing. Which is never on TV outside of the Olympics. And was never on TV before the last Olympics. Last time it made it to BBC3 (which no longer exists). This time it is on the red button and we have male foilists who are actually good. Who knew? So it's possible some of their fights could make it to BBC4 later, you never know.*

The trouble is there are so many sports it's sometimes hard to know what to watch. Day 2 has only just started and so far I've seen swimming, tennis, fencing, gymnastics, cycling, water polo and beach volleyball. I'm loving it. I only wish I didn't have to work during it (listening on the radio isn't quite the same).

*Edit: And then it was on BBC1. BBC1! They were pretending it was live, 45 minutes after it actually happened, but still. BBC1!


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I aten’t dead
Sunday 10th July 2016 12:37 pm

When I wrote my last post I couldn't hear properly out of my left ear, which is a sign that I might be about to get labyrinthitis. And by might I mean in my optimistic dream world. I wasn't quite as bad as the last time I had it, where I didn't get out of bed for a few days. But it was bad enough that even though Wimbledon was on, I was to dizzy to watch much of it and ended up listening to it on the radio.

I was just getting over that, after the best part of a week when I got a UTI. Which one of the doctors I spoke to said was "uncomfortable". Which is not the word. That really made me ill. It didn't help that although I'd be in bed for 12-14 hours a night, I'd only be able to sleep for about 5-6 of those hours. It meant I was too tired to listen to the tennis and mostly had it on TV to help the time pass. And fall asleep to. I've slept through some very interesting matches...

I have managed to recover just in time to finish my NPT fic before reveals. And post my Unconventional Courtship fic, two weeks late:
Second Chance with the Doctor's Companion (1062 words)
Fandom: Doctor Who (1963)
Relationships: Sarah Jane Smith/Harry Sullivan
Characters: Harry Sullivan, Sarah Jane Smith
Summary: Everyone in the town could see they didn't belong together. Sarah Jane Smith was the adventurous outsider with a mysterious past, and Harry Sullivan was the wholesome doctor. And Sarah's sudden departure just proved the rest of the town right...
Seven months later the Doctor dropping her off brings Sarah back into Harry's life, and once again he finds himself charmed by her. Everything feels different, but the risk of heartbreak is just as strong. But doesn't everyone deserve a second chance at happiness — even him...?


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Didn’t mean to not post for this long
Thursday 10th March 2016 8:40 pm

I kept meaning to post, but just not getting to it. Which is the theme of this month really. I've got 400 words on my [info]dw_guestfest fic, but no idea where it really goes from there. And keep not being motivated/awake enough to poke at it. I seem to be in a period where my body has decided I don't need to sleep much past 6am, even on days when I don't have to get up early.

Last weekend I went to the tennis in Birmingham. It was good fun, but I disliked the hype before the match with t-shirt shooters and a DJ. I don't mind the music at changeovers, or Stirling Uni Barmy Army, but other than that I like the quiet. But we won, so that's all that matters 🙂 My sister pointed out that she could take a photo from her Apple Watch - so I held up her phone and she took the picture. Completely silly.

Missy has met her first stranger and was very good. Mostly she was just confused about something different going on. She also, on a different night, fell off my lap when I wasn't quite quick enough to catch her (she likes to hang off my knees). She's been a bit more restrained since, but I don't know how long that will last.

I'm looking forward to it being the end of next week when things will calm down a bit this month.


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Tennis (and a bit of Doctor Who)
Sunday 20th September 2015 10:33 am

I say things, it's going to be mostly tennis, let's be fair. This weekend is the sort of time we're used to seeing Davis Cup matches. What usually happens is we lose in the first round of the World Group in March, then play in September to try and get back in the World Group. Except that somehow (James Ward unexpectedly beat John Isner in the first round) this is our third match this year and it's the semi-finals. The team that wins the world group wins the Davis Cup proper.

Getting this far has meant that all the media are basically assuming we're going to win. Which is a bit counting chickens/crossing bridges/too many eggs. At both press conferences so far they've asked Andy Murray how he'll feel at getting into the final and not unreasonably he's replied that he'll answer that if and when we do.

(To any Australians reading this, ignore the above paragraph: we're going to thrash you this afternoon and there's never been any doubt about it)

Yesterday was the doubles. I like doubles - it tends to have more exciting points where players are volleying on reflex and rallies are shorter. This was one of those matches where you couldn't tell who was going to win until someone did. Which is exciting in a grand slam final where you don't care too much who wins. It's agonising when the players are representing their country. Good tennis, though. Lleyton Hewitt might have been around for a while and past his best, but he still knew his doubles. And it once again confirmed that Jamie is my favourite of the Murray brothers.

Doctor Who was back yesterday, but frankly, after four hours of exciting, agonising tennis, 45 minutes of half a story can't compete. I don't like two parters - I'd have saved it until next week if I could, but then I'd have had to avoid the whole internet and whole world and that's just not possible.


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Updatey thing
Sunday 5th July 2015 9:12 pm

This time my week without updating has been due to a combination of tennis and weather. This week featured a few days with temperatures in the high 20s and one where it went up to 33C (and was humid). My house has only just cooled down. I am really lucky to have air conditioning at work, but it's really hard to sleep in the heat, so I've just been getting tireder as the week went on.

This was the first week of Wimbledon, featuring wall-to-wall tennis. Well, nearly. It's generally the afternoon by the time the radio (and show courts) get going, so I've listened to a lot and seen the evening matches when I've been in. Yesterday there was eleven hours of tennis, including one point where I watched the James Ward match on TV and Jonny Marray in the doubles on my computer. And then missed most of the Murray match because they changed over to BBC1 for no reason and I didn't realise, so watched some of the all-French match on the red button.

So that's been my week really. On the hottest day I went to ballet, in the hottest dance studio (it was much hotter than in the house, with was hot). Remix went live and so far I've only read one story. I will get to the rest - probably like I'll get to everything else when Wimbledon's finished and I don't quite know what to do with my time.


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Various things
Monday 9th March 2015 7:57 pm

I finally posted The Librarians sword fighting fic I've been working on for ages: The Swashbucklers.

I have failed to start on my [info]unconventionalcourtship and my [info]dw_guestfest fics. Which is partly why I ended up not signing up for Rare Women.

Since it's March it's Back to Middle-earth Month. For me this is going to be a reading year. Or it will be - so far I've read the stories posted on the 1st March and the rest are sitting around waiting to be read. I will get to them eventually.

My neighbours moved out this weekend. The house isn't for sale or rent though, so presumably the landlord and landlady are doing something privately. It is very quiet without the back door and back gate slamming. I wait and see what the next people will be like (I've had three sets of neighbours on that side in the three and a half years I've lived here).

Tennis! It was long and exciting and tiring. I'm glad I didn't go to Rotary Conference because I got to watch it (and also because it was just too soon after Redemption). And we beat USA. So now we wait with baited breath to see whether July's match against France is going to be in England or Scotland (I'd like to go and watch it, but not so much that I'm willing to go a long way).


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This week I have…
Sunday 27th July 2014 12:26 pm

... not been sleeping enough due to the heat.

... watching the Commonwealth Games. I've been enjoying the swimming the most and it's reminded me that I should go when I can and see how it affects my dizziness. I've also seen some triathlon, athletics, bowls, judo, squash and rhythmic gymnastics. And listening to it at work, although swimming is definitely not the same over the radio because part of the appeal for me is seeing the actual swimming.

... uploading my stories to AO3. I have now done pretty much all the Doctor Who related and Stargate related non-drabbles and more rare stuff (mostly also non-drabbles).


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Watching Wimbledon
Friday 4th July 2014 8:15 pm

I had the day off today to watch Wimbledon and this was the view I had from my sofa:

Wimbledon watching


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I never could get the hang of Thursdays
Thursday 26th June 2014 8:45 pm

Today has really been one of those days. This morning, I got as far as getting in the car before realising that I'd left the bags I need to take with me to the supermarket in the lounge. My garage is not next to the house, so it's quite a way to go back to the house to get them.

Then this week at work I had a few things to do, nicely spaced out. Except the time when I received them kept getting delayed - the time they need to be launched doesn't, of course. So I got to do it all this morning. One of them I was supposed to tell someone I'd done and only remembered an hour later. One of them I'd got done and out of the way and then the client made a change at 4.30pm. And then I left late because someone was having a problem with something that needed sorting right then. We eventually found the problem was that a piece of script had decided that 12=4 for no explicable reason.

Just as I left the office it started raining. Once I left the car park, it stopped. It started again when I got home and went to put the bins out. At which point I found a dead blackbird between the bins. So I had to deal with his blackbird in the rain while having a panic attack (because I am necrophobic). I couldn't just leave it there because it was too sheltered to be found by cats or Red Kites. I wasn't prepared to dig it a grave in solid soil in the rain, so I dumped it in the compost bin, where the ants can play with it.

And then of course when I wanted to sit down and watch tennis between cooking dinner and when eating dinner it was raining at Wimbledon. I haven't had much Wimbledon during the day at work because they stop early for the football and spend most of the day discussing the football. I know far more about Suarez's ban than I ever needed to know.

On the plus side, at least the rain was early enough for Wimbledon to put the roof on, so I got to watch some evening Federer action.


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A few things
Monday 23rd June 2014 9:00 pm

Wimbledon! Although this afternoon was a bit disappointing because the radio was all about Andy Murray defending his title. Now his first match is over with, hopefully things will settle down a bit. With roughly half the first round matches played I'm already one fantasy tennis player down on one of my fantasy teams.

Game of Thrones! I finally got round to watching the latest series last week. Well, I started the weekend before last and finished last weekend. I definitely need to read the book because some of it made no sense. My favourite character of his series was Peter Baelish because I have no idea what he wants, which makes him unpredictable and therefore more interesting.

Temporary glasses loss! On Friday I got home, wearing my prescription sunglasses. After I'd got the bin in I went into my bag to change my glasses... and my glasses case wasn't there. I'd either not put it in my bag at work when I changed my glasses or it had fallen out in Tesco when I stopped for some salt (for a slug barrier to stop the slugs getting in the house) or in the car. After a bit of worry that I'd have to decide whether to spend the weekend in sunglasses or old glasses, I went out to the car and found the case on the passenger seat, where it had fallen out of my bag.


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Queens tennis
Monday 16th June 2014 8:48 pm

Yesterday I went to see the finals at Queens. We hoped for fourth time lucky on seeing a whole singles final and a whole doubles final. We'll be hoping for fifth time lucky next year...

The problem with this year was the cold. It was all right when the sun came out or the wind didn't blow, but sadly that didn't happen often. We decided to miss the whole of the first set to go and warm up. Although the only really warm place were the toilets, which were very nice, but not the best place to hang out.

I am really tired today. Because they had a charity match afterwards and both matches went to a match tiebreak/third set (which was good - you don't want a one-sided final) it meant that we were there for the best part of nine hours. I'll put up my photos and talk about the tennis later this week when I've woken up a bit.

On the plus side, I wore my new walking shoes. I didn't do much walking, but after nearly twelve hours in them they still felt comfortable. I can't say the same about the old ones, so they're definitely an improvement in that respect.


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Tennis!
Monday 26th May 2014 9:09 pm

Roland Garros started yesterday, and with it the start of six weeks of tennis (with one week off). With the exception of bits of the Australian Open, Davis Cup (when we're not in group 2) and bits of the ATP Tour Finals, this the only time it's actually on TV. I haven't actually watched any of it yet because I've been tired, recovering from having gone to Manchester. It's particularly hard to watch the French Open when tired because:

  1. It's on ITV, so it has adverts. It means you can't just have it on and pay a bit of attention to it now and again unless you have it muted. And even then, those adverts get so repetitive every time they sit down.
  2. Jim Courier, who hasn't learnt the art of stopping talking when players are playing. It makes it so much harder to concentrate. Plus he rambles on about unimportant stuff and is an idiot. And American.
  3. The camera men are really fond of panning round the crowd and/or around from above and spiralling in on a player. That doesn't help with the dizziness. But I do know more about how Roland Garros looks than the Australian Open and I've been to the latter (for a tour - not when it's on).

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Births, deaths and bank holidays
Monday 5th May 2014 12:23 pm

Today is a bank holiday for May Day. It's so nice to have a three day weekend - Saturday I went out, yesterday I gardened (weeding really uses the muscles in your bum), so today I am doing not much. Which I am counting as celebrating my birthday. Well, I opened my presents and cards, and later I will be watching Midsomer Murders and playing Lego Pirates of the Caribbean. I have:
- chocolate
- cheese (which I'd already started and wasn't wrapped)
- some sponges
- the latest Science of Discworld book
- a guillotine (the paper cutting kind, not the head cutting type)
- a bag with bunnies on
I also have the latest Coldplay CD and a book coming when the CD is released.

The bad news for the day is that Elena Baltacha died. She's a British tennis player who amazingly got to the top 50. She retired late last year then was diagnosed with liver cancer. She was only 30. It's not fair that someone so young and fit and healthy could get cancer and die of it.


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