Angelic Paranoia

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State Opening of Parliament
Thursday 5th June 2014 9:07 pm

I haven't got anything done this evening because I've been watching the State Opening of Parliament. I've never seen it before and only watched it because I did a tour of Parliament in December and wanted to see the places I'd been. It turned out to be so interesting that I watched it all until the Queen started her speech.

What's interesting is the historical side of it. Before the Queen arrives there's a group of guards who search the cellars (and get some port for doing it!), just in case anyone else had decided to copy Guy Fawkes and blow up Parliament.

The Queen sits in the House of Lords and delivers the speech from there because she's not allowed in the House of Commons. She sends Black Rod (her representative) down to the Commons, who slam the door in his face. They really did slam it too, although not quite actually in his face! Then he knocks three times and gets let in and invites the Commons into the House of Lords to hear the speech. At which point Dennis Skinner makes a joke. This year's was "Coalition's Last Stand" - this being the last Queen's Speech before the general election next May. Then they all troop off to the Lords, where most of them don't get it because there's really not a lot of space.

This all relates to Charles I, who came into the Commons to arrest some MPs. The civil war came after that - generally speaking he wanted to rule and ignore Parliament, Parliament thought they should rule. They ended up trying him for treason and cut his head off and no monarch has been in the Commons since.

It was interesting to see Cameron and Miliband chatting as they headed to the Lords. As the men in the studio said, they are on camera and have to look human and friendly, but also that they have a lot in common and aren't always enemies. It reminded me of Yes, Minister, where Hacker explained that the opposition were the opposition in exile, the civil service were the opposition in residence. They said that talking about their children was always a good topic, plus their upcoming D-Day trip.

I'm not sure I feel the need to see it again, because it's largely the same every year, but I am glad to have seen it.

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Sunday 23rd October 2011 8:01 pm

In a couple of places in this week's The Week it mentions about staying on BST all year round and people have been claiming that everyone wants it, except the Scottish. Well, I don't want it.

At the moment it's dark enough when I leave work to need the headlights on. It's definitely dark enough to need the lights on inside when I get home. Even without changing the clocks next weekend, that's going to carry on getting worse until it's completely dark when I leave work long before 21st December.

Since the days are getting shorter, sunrise is about the time I get up. It's light by the time I leave for work and it's only so dark I need to put the lights on if it's cloudy, but that's definitely encroaching.

If we stayed on BST, by 21st December it would be dark when I went to work and dark when I left home. I would only see the light out of the office window. Personally, on balance, I'd like lighter evenings. And an extra hour next weekend, even if it's required for putting all the clocks back.

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Thursday 18th January 2007 10:50 pm

The OC has been cancelled! I'm obviously out of the loop because that article is dated 4th January, and I only vaguely read something along those lines today. In better news, as of this morning, we no longer have a hosepipe ban. Now I just need a hosepipe...

My leg's definitely getting better, albeit slowly. I'm supposed to be driving to Wycombe on 27th for Burns Night, so we'll have to see how that goes. If it's bad, I might end up in a dress and walking boots because I don't think 2 inch heels are going help somehow.

I watched The Invasion, courtesy of Lovefilm getting it right for once. I liked it but it was a bit slow. I quite liked the Second Doctor and Jamie. Zoe I'm not so sure about yet.

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Friday 25th August 2006 9:08 pm

I kept reading today that Pluto is no longer a planet which confused me because I thought they'd alreay decided there would be 12 planets in the solar system (with the addition of Ceres, Charon and Xena). But I must have read something that just said that's what could happen and I liked the idea. So, I reserve the right to have 12 planets in my solar system, rather than 8, so there. *sticks tongue out*

I'm quite tempted by the sg-rarepairings ficathon as it includes all pairings that aren't Sam/Jack, Jack/Daniel, Shep/Weir, McKay/Shep. Which doesn't rule out most Atlantis pairings I'll quite happily read. I know the 11th December deadline looks a long way off but it won't be by the time assignments are out and I'm distracted by something else.

I also had a drive tonight, with my landlady's boyfriend, who was really good to drive with. The roads were quiet, which was good. I was thinking I might just about manage to go round the block but we actually went through town then round it on the bypass and it went okay. So I might well drive to bowling on Tuesday (with a new Rotaract member who is training to be a driving instructor).

I've also been playing with my sat nav. Not only do I have John Cleese's voice on it, but the daleks too. Not that you can really understand their instructions but it works for entertainment value. And Sel, you're right, it can't find your house. It manages your postcode but gives me another road and then refuses to deal with house numbers. So I'll be able to get in the vicinity of your house for Peg2, then there might be some ringing of your house to tell whoever answers John Cleese can't find it 🙂

I'm all excited now! I'm off to Banbury this weekend - it's a big Rotaract camping weekend, so I'm going up for the day today and tomorrow. Tomorrow is the Conference bid, so I have been told I have to be there 🙂 Tonight they are having a big Christmas party - which is their theme. Don't ask.

But it's a bank holiday weekend, yay! Except last one till Christmas 🙁 Monday I'm going to defrost the fridge, do my monthly backup of the whole computer and clean my room. Wow, don't I live an exciting life.

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Happy New Year
Tuesday 4th October 2005 7:50 pm

(Although I started writing this yesterday, so I'm technically a bit late with that, never mind)

You couldn't make it up: Drunken prank led to armed siege

I had no intention of seeing Serenity. I've seen 20mins of Firefly and that was enough. But there was an article about it in the latest SFX that mentioned they go to a remote place called Maidenhead. I mentioned it to Rotaract and there was a general concesus we'd have to check out this 'Maidenhead' place. (A small note - Maidenhead is a town not far from here. One of our members is going out with an ex-member of Maidenhead Rotaract).

I discovered today this WordPress blog has the best thing ever - search. We were having a Myers-Briggs discussion and I knew I had what I was on my blog somewhere but couldn't remember which month it was. But I searched for it and found it.

I'm really bad with names, it takes me a long time to learn them. For some reason I find it much easier if I see them written down - although if isn't pronounced as it's written that doesn't help. I struggled with who Weiss in Alias was for two series. I was seeing it written when people talked about him and assumed it was pronounced Veiss, and I couldn't remember anyone with that name.

I've seen someone called Halling mentioned paired with Beckett (Carson, not Sam, which doesn't help). I assumed it was the woman from Duet whose name begins with a C or K, but no, turns out Halling is a man. Is he actually on the series? Admittedly, it's taken me a series and a half to work out who Zelenka is.

I'm doing really badly on episode titles as well. I keep seeing episode tag fics, where they'll say it's set post 'Hot Zone' for example. Which is great. Except that doesn't really narrow it down very much. Which is why I started putting an episode guide on my site - I need it for me.

The way Lost introduces you to a character each episode is really handy because I'm learning a name per episode. I think I've learnt the same number now as I would have in the entire series. I did confuse myself though, as I temporarily named Sawyer, 'that guy' but then got confused and thought Adam was 'that guy'. I think the only ones I have temporary names for now are Adam, the pregnant girl who I think was Tess in Roswell High, that guy who's been in everything, the kid, the kid's dad, the dog, the one with silly hair. I've even managed to learn Shannon without her having an episode yet, which is pretty good going for me.

After the two-part starter for the latest Spooks series I realised there was a new character and I should make sure I remember his name. Needless to say I'd forgotten it a week later and I still can't remember. It's only one name and four episodes later it could be anything. Although the other week I couldn't for the life of me work out who this Fiona Adam was referring to was.

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