Angelic Paranoia

Paranoidangel's Website

What I’ve been listening to
Friday 30th June 2017 7:42 pm

I seem to always have more Big Finish audios to listen to than I have time to listen. I tend to listen to them on the way to work and since my journey is 20 minutes long it takes three or four days to get through one CD.

They've just done three CDs that are two one hour stories, rather one two hour story. Which, annoyingly, they're not planning to do often because people prefer the longer stories. I prefer the shorter because I can get one story listened to in one week. And I don't have to remember back so far as to what's happening. And it just zips along faster. I liked these.

The one I've just finished is Shadow Planet/World Apart, which is a Seven, Ace and Hex. As part of me going through my stuff and working out what to get rid of, I looked at my Big Finish CDs and thought, given that I've always got some to listen to, and a backlog of podcasts (which I listen to while cooking), am I ever going to listen to these again? I haven't answered that question, but listening to the latest audio made me realise how much I missed the Seven, Ace and Hex stuff and I want to re-listen to it.

And then there was the latest Short Trip, How to Win Planets and Influence People. I'd been looking forward to it for ages because it's Four, Sarah and Harry (finally!). And I'm sure it was originally due to come out much sooner. And then I was disappointed because Sarah and Harry barely feature in it, although they are important in the scenes they're in. But, despite that disappointment, I really enjoyed it. Rufus Hound was better than I expected as the Monk, mainly because I liked Graeme Garden better (mainly because it's Graeme Garden). The way it was done was good and I liked the story.


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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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Things
Thursday 22nd June 2017 5:30 pm

It's been hot the past few days, so if I hadn't needed to do anything during that time, I didn't do it. If I was in, I just read or caught up on TV and was hot. As was Missy - hamsters don't do well if it's too hot and they don't like the humidity either. But she's enjoyed frozen peas and frozen carrots and she's been outside. Because it's been so hot I've had the back door open while she's out playing, so of course she went out onto the doorstep and then fell off. After a few times falling off she was happy about where she was and tried to wander off. At one point she found a pebble and decided she wanted it.

Monday I had one of my (on average) two days a year when I wished my car had air conditioning. I did some stargazing from my back door, where I was sat because it was cooler and I could keep an eye on Missy escaping. Not that I could see many stars because even by the time I went to bed late it still wasn't properly dark.

Now, though, the weather is much better, I have a couple of days off work and I am catching up on things.

Tennis is crazy. Queens sometimes has those years when all the seeds go out in the first couple of rounds, so we were probably overdue one. But I feel like the third, second and first seeds all going out one after the other must be some sort of record. And a whole load withdrew due to injuries. But it'll be interesting to get a winner outside of the usual suspects - although a few former champions are still in the draw.

Unconventional Courtship is on again. I spent some time at the weekend with the Generator and ended up signing up with this summary:
310) Night of the Living Wed by Michele Hauf
Dayna Mellanby and Del Tarrant's evening turns deadly when some uninvited guests show up at their friend's party — a horde of hungry zombies. The couple is in a fight for their lives when a new, heroic side of Tarrant emerges, and he vows to protect Dayna no matter the cost….

Obviously explosions will follow. I will probably change the zombies, but I went with this one because it was just so perfect for them. And will be different to what I've written for it before.


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What I am reading Wednesday
Wednesday 14th June 2017 8:41 pm

What I Just Finished Reading
The Chalet School and Rosalie, and Trials for the Chalet School by Elinor M Brent-Dyer. These are both books I've read before, but I don't own, so haven't re-read. Or in the case of Trials, have only read the paperback with big cuts. I was really tired and didn't have a brain, so I looked at my to read shelf and thought this was the situation Chalet School books were perfect for. And they were. My only trouble was with Trials because it was very heavily Mary-Lou and I can only take her in small doses.

What I'm Currently Reading
Millions Like Us: Women's Lives During the Second World War by Virginia Nicholson. Iv'e been reading this on and off for a while. But it is at least up to VE and VJ Day, so while it's not all rosy, at least no one's finding bits of people who have been blown up in the blitz. It was interesting reading about the 1945 election while the election was going on here.

One particular interesting bit is about Nina Mabey, who had joined the Labour Club, while at Oxford university:

'Our duty was to make sure, when the war ended, that a new, happier, more generous society would take the place of the bad, old, selfish one.' And this was the line she had argued, vehemently, one evening in 1944, with another undergraduate in her year-group who, she discovered, was steering an opposite course by joining the Conservatives. The young woman in question was chemistry student Margaret Roberts, later to become Margaret Thatcher. [...] How on earth could one want to be associated with such a stuffy institution as the Conservative Club, when the Labour affiliates were all so much more fun? All the really interesting people were members.

"Margaret smiled, her pretty china doll's smile. Of course, she admitted, the Labour Club was, just at the moment, more fashionable - a deadly word that immediately reduced my pretensions - but that, in a way, unintentionally suited her purposes. Unlike me, she was not 'playing' at politics. She meant to get into Parliament and there was more chance of being noticed in the Conservative Club just because some of the members were a bit stodgy."

Sisters at the Chalet School by Amy Fletcher. What's been interesting about this one, for me, is that it's set in 1944. There's a moment towards the beginning of the book when one character mentions how they're glad bread isn't rationed. And I'd recently been reading about the shortages in the shops in 1945 and how bread began to be rationed in 1946.

What I'm Reading Next
Given that I've still got 100 pages of Millions Like Us to go, I think it'll be a while before I have to answer that question.


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Missy and Writing
Monday 12th June 2017 8:40 pm

Did you know, that in the middle of the planks of laminate flooring is wool-like wood? Neither did I, until Missy half-demolished the one by the back door. She thinks it'll get her out of the back door. Occasionally she tries chewing the door too, but since it's plastic she doesn't get very far with it.It's the reason why my back door mat has a corner taken out of it. And why she's now working on the opposite corner, since I turned it around. The trouble is that she thinks anything put in her way is just a challenge to be overcome…

She's also gone off the cornflake-like pieces in her food. They used to be her favourite. With the other bits she's not keen on, she just leaves them in her food store and eats the bits she likes best first. Which seems to include bits of sweetcorn - I keep finding half-eaten bits of it buried everywhere. But with the cornflakes, she leaves them in her food bowl. Until yesterday, she was taking them off me, if I offered one to her. But yesterday I gave her one, she took it, thought about it, then dropped it.

She has yet to learn that just because she wants something, doesn't mean she'll get it.

I've been reading some Chalet School books recently, which I will post about on Wednesday. They really made me want to get back to Lynda Day at the CS. Although the trouble with that is I know how it starts, I just don't know how it goes on from there (aside from not what I wrote in the first draft).

For Unconventional Courtship I really wanted to write a pairing from a different fandom every time I did it. I was thinking of writing Harry/Ruth next because a bit of undercover stuff could fit well with a summary. But there's been a few things recently that have made me want to write Tarrant/Dayna, despite having written Tarrant/Servalan/Avon for the first Unconventional Courtship. I think the trouble is that Tarrant/Dayna fit the ridiculousness of the whole thing well.

What all this thinking about writing means is that I'm too busy for writing. But more awake and less dizzy than I was. We'll see how long it lasts.


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Politics and tennis
Friday 9th June 2017 11:51 am

I keep trying to post, but I'm either out or in and distracted by tennis or in and have a hundred things to do or in and too tired to do anything. Today I'm in (and have the day off) and am too tired to do anything, but it doesn't feel so bad because it's self-inflicted.

Whenever I stay up for the election, whatever I do is wrong. Last time we didn't have a result until lunchtime and this time dawn is a lot earlier and Andy Murray is on court at 11.45, so I stayed up until 12.30 and went to bed. I thought I'd check BBC News when I was woken up by the birds, but couldn't open my eyes. I thought about it again when I randomly woke up at 5.30, when I did open my eyes to see the time, but was just too tired. When I woke up at 7.30 and was clearly not going to get back to sleep it was all over.

Some election stuff:

  • I am excited about a hung parliament, for a variety of reasons, but partly because it seemed like we were going to get one in 2010. So now I actually get to see one.
  • Despite this, my Conservative MP gained one percentage point of votes. Although Labour came second, with half the votes of the Tory. And turn out was 2.5 percentage points higher than in 2015 in my constituency. And I feel like my vote counted, which is the best thing I can hope for in my getting-safer-all-the-time Conservative seat.
  • I've never been so undecided about an election. I did Vote for Policies and other sites and they came out variously in favour of the three parties I was considering voting for in the first place.
  • I went to the local hustings, aka quiz the candidates (I found out the other week that hustings is a British English word). I agreed with some of the things they all said and disagreed with some of the things they all said. Although my MP, despite being a normal person when I met him when he was on constituency duties, was really smarmy. I tried not to be biased towards the Labour candidate just because she was wearing red. I managed it at primary school when my house colour was blue!
  • I only learnt recently that they were looking for more people to man polling stations and work at the count. Manning a polling station must be quite dull, but I'd love to go to a count. I can't stay up long enough for a general election one, but a local election one would be fine, because they count on the Friday.

Of course the other main thing going on at the moment is the French Open. I did a lot more listening to it on the radio last week. Andy Murray's last match against Kei Nishikori I just couldn't bear to listen to. I am going to watch/listen to the men's semis today, but it might be through my fingers with the Murray vs Wawrinka match.

I did watch a bit last weekend. I was enjoying Kyle Edmund's match against Kevin Anderson, partly because it was on Court 2, so the camera couldn't swirl about the court, partly because Jim Courier wasn't commentating. But mostly because I really like watching Kyle Edmund. At least he gets on with it, unlike Andy Murray, who is always going on about something.

When the radio started with Andy Murray vs Del Potro, I put that on, listening to it and watching on the telly when they were actually playing the points and the camera didn't move. Back in the days of analogue TV, the radio would be slightly ahead, which meant they'd be telling you the shot they made as you saw them make it. But the digital picture is really delayed (relatively speaking). The radio on the internet more so. So last weekend was my first chance to test out the digital radio vs digital TV. And it's not as good as analogue on both. The radio was ahead by two shots, so sometimes it looked like it was exactly match, but mostly the commentator told you what was going to happen before you saw it. Still, it's better than listening to Jim Courier.


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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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Star Trek (again)
Sunday 14th May 2017 1:20 pm

I must have coped back before LJ improved the subject lines in their notifications, but now I'm getting more from DW than LJ, I'm completely confused by which entry "Reply to your entry" is actually referring to and then lose track of which I've replied to (or need to reply to). So for now I am purposely not posting very often. In an ideal world I'd just get everyone to comment on my blog, but that would require some effort to make sure OpenID is working and the whole comment page isn't crappy, and it's just not top of my list. I haven't even put Windows fonts on my new computer yet.

I discovered that between the Horror Channel and Pick, on a weekday morning you can watch Deep Space Nine, Voyager, Star Trek (Original Series) and Stargate Atlantis. I worked from home and my morning went very quickly with all that on. Although they put them all into an hour, so with the exception of TOS, the adverts go on forever. 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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Missy’s exploring
Monday 24th April 2017 8:58 pm

Missy has found exciting new places to explore! Courtesy of me, of course. After she spent some time looking up at the windowsill last night, I put her on it tonight. She ran about, sniffing it, decided she wanted to get out of the window at the corner, then end up wandering around the corner, where there's only really a thin sliver of windowsill. Fortunately I was ready and she fell off into my hand.

Missy on the windowsill

Missy on the windowsill

We had a holiday at my parents, where she got to run around in the hall. As I expected, once she found the cat litter she immediately thought "I'll have this" and tried to pouch it. She had to be removed from the cat litter tray.

She also tried to chew the mat. It's fine at my house, because mat's are cheap and it keeps her occupied. And in the light of her obsession with the sofa a mat seems much more harmless. But at my parents house their mat is built in and consequently doesn't need bits taking out of it by a hamster. She was surprisingly hard to remove from it when she had her teeth in it. She knows what "No" said firmly means and at one point looked at me when I said it, then carried on anyway.

She also discovered the stairs. Once she was up one she was up them all (until I stopped her climbing to the top). She wasn't quite so sure about coming down until she'd done a few.

Missy in shoes

Missy in shoes


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Actual writing
Wednesday 12th April 2017 9:17 pm

I have written something that's not for a ficathon or a fest or any sort of deadline! Well, I say written, I have finished something. Two things in fact - I started them both shortly after the Spooks film came out. One was nearly finished, one was so finished I just fixed a couple of typos and declared it done.

It's good to a) finish something on my length WIP list and b) write in a fandom I haven't written in for a while. And as a by-product I realised I had, without noticing, now got a diagonal line on my Gen Prompt Bingo card. Or I will, once I find something to fit in the wild card. And then I can get another card for the latest round, that will hopefully help me finish some other WIPs.

I did choose these two because they were the closest to being finished, for the sense of accomplishment. I do now feel accomplished - let's hope that continues on to help me finish some of the other things on my list.

The Better Bad (1156 words) by paranoidangel
Fandom: Spooks | MI-5
Rating: General Audiences
Warnings: Creator Chose Not To Use Archive Warnings
Characters: Dimitri Levendis, Erin Watts, Harry Pearce
Additional Tags: Post-The Greater Good
Summary: The reason why Dimitri wasn't in The Greater Good. Spoilers for The Greater Good.

Undercover Relationship (1256 words) by paranoidangel
Fandom: Spooks | MI-5
Rating: General Audiences
Warnings: No Archive Warnings Apply
Relationships: Dimitri Levendis/Erin Watts
Characters: Dimitri Levendis, Erin Watts
Additional Tags: Undercover
Summary: Dimitri and Erin attempt to have a relationship, but being in MI-5 doesn't make it easy.


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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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Star Trek
Wednesday 5th April 2017 8:12 pm

Re-watching bits of ST:TNG for my Het Swap fic got me all interested in Star Trek again. To the point where I now own all of it on DVD except the Animated Series and Voyager. The only reason I don't own the Animated Series is because it's expensive (ie over £10). I've only seen it once, when the BBC used to show a few episodes in half terms and school holidays during the day.

When I re-watched bits of TNG, I went for the Riker/Troi bits, since I was mostly writing them. But I got distracted by Patrick Stewart. I briefly thought "why is a Frenchman being played by a Yorkshire man?" and then remembered we'd done this in the 90s and I'd just have to live with it. Although then I thought that if he was French he wouldn't pronounce it Picard.

And then I got distracted by something that really annoyed me. The Enterprise D bridge is very pretty. Doesn't need a seat just for the counselor, but I didn't see any episodes where she stated the obvious, so I let that go. It does have plenty of seats... except for Worf. When I started watching it, back in the 90s, it was in series 5. At the time I had no idea Tasha Yar existed and just accepted that Klingons are happy standing for their whole shift when everyone else gets to sit down.

(As an aside, maybe they should have all had sit-standing/treadmill/some sort of crazy futuristic work stations)

Except that what sort of designer thought that was a good idea?

I'm still not over that. But I went and looked at Star Trek books. And there are loads. There's a series set on Picard's old ship, Stargazer, there's a series set between Insurrection and Nemesis to explain the inconsistencies (none of which I noticed). It's pretty much a case of you name it, there's a series of books about it.

The amazing thing are the number of Star Trek books I found in the county's libraries. I've seen one or two in my local library, but it is only small and it never occurred to me that there might be more out there. Obviously they only have recent ones, but it's the recent ones I'm interested in. I read enough TOS and TNG books in the 90s and I want to see how they've carried things on since the end of TNG & DS9.

And then I made my most exciting discovery - there's a Kirk autobiography. Suddenly £1 to get it from another library in the county seemed like a small price to pay and when I eventually got it, I read it in a day. I loved it. They described why certain things happened the way they did in various TOS episodes - or at least I think they did. It's been a while since I've seen any of them. Amusingly, they made The Final Frontier fictional. But I discovered how much I've forgotten even of the films - although I remember the line "Everyone remember where we parked" from The Voyage Home, I didn't remember that was in a Klingon ship.

I ended up rewatching it. And it wasn't as good as I remembered. I think part of the excitement at the time was seeing the crew in the present. But now the 80s is a long way away. And wow. I'm used to seeing 80s fashions from Press Gang, but TNG and The Voyage Home shows how America took that to a whole new OTT level. I just can't get over the size of the hair.

But I did like seeing Sulu in his element flying a helicopter, Scotty showing how good he was at his job, and Chekov's "nuclear wessels". According to Kirk's autobiography Scotty ate most of Kirk's pizza, which doesn't surprise me.

I had a moment of being convinced I must be going mad when I recognised one of the Starfleet personnel - and then when I looked it up I discovered he was Sisko's father.

I found that Picard's autobiography is out in the autumn, so I am really looking forward to that. And in the meantime, catching up on other Star Trek books the library is providing me with.


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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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Getting out of the habit
Sunday 2nd April 2017 7:35 pm

I've got out of the habit of quite a few things over the last few weeks. Work has been busy and I've been out a lot of week nights, so I haven't had energy to do anything at the weekends. So I have got out of the habit of blogging and fic writing and TV watching (evenings in involve playing with Missy).

But now I have a few weeks off going out for Easter (aside from a few nights) so hopefully I will get back into these habits.

But this weekend I've had energy, which has made a nice change. The weather being sunny and warm helps. I went swimming this morning - and purposely didn't do many lengths because I knew I had to come home and hoover.

I did manage to get my [info]dw-guestfest done on time this year! Although it's not the fic I meant to write. I meant to write one that would fill a square on my Gen Prompt Bingo card and cross off a WIP from my list. Except when I opened it I realised I'd left a gap between the end of the previous Tenth Doctor & John Chesterton fic and the beginning of the this, so I wrote the bit that goes in between (this time without a Press Gang title*).

*Although a "write a fic for every Press Gang episode title" would be a good (if big) challenge.


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