Ahh, this is the good shit

Once more, I must take my hat off to Autology; it is a blog which I really enjoy reading and (if allowed, which isn’t often) commenting on. I have been lax in my surfing for a while, so all of a sudden I find myself having to catch up on all these interesting things. Go take a look, even if not being allowed to have your tuppence worth does infuriate you :p

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Half my kingdom for a job

I know, I know, I have been away for some time now. This is due to my redoubled efforts at finding myself gainful employment so that I can finally begin contributing to the economy in a meaningful way. These efforts have been mostly in the form of lying on my back, and dreaming of spending the money I am sure to get when I am, by some miracle, employed.

I was always advised to work the crowd with a good joke at the beginning, so they get into the mood. Here’s how Homer accuses Marge of being selfish when she’s not too enthusiastic about his plan for renting her womb to childless parents to make money:-
“It’s uter-US, not uter-YOU!!”
Guaranteed to put a smile on any face.

I watched Amores Perros and Nueve Reinas on DVD, I loved both of them! Amores perros (Love’s a bitch) is very gritty, where as Nueve Reinas (Nine Queens) is a twisting story about two con men in Argentina struggling to make a profit against a backdrop of criminals everywhere. Highlight of both films? They re-united me with some phrases that my South American friends used to use in Moscow, i.e.
chinga tu madre,
joder,
pendejo, etc.

Do I look bothered??

We’re going to get our marks at 3 p.m. Slightly elevated blood pressure, still breathing quite relaxed. I got Iron Maiden’s ‘Killers’ album out from the library, haven’t heard it in ages!!
(Later) Ok, we all passed.

We have lift-off

We have our graduation packs. We are invited to take part in a ceremony that honours our acheivements, yet curiously we have to pay for our clothes, which are prescribed to us!! At the cost of £37!! (I’m a notorius tight-ass on this subject, refer to my Chinese Year for info)

I was watching Peep Show yesterday, I like such off-the-wall humour, and the funny camera angles. As usual, right on time comes a quote

“I guess doing things you hate is just part of what you do to avoid loneliness”

He means in particular going round on the rides in an amusement park, but I think this more broadly applies to quite a few things we might hate doing 😛 (Oh, the stories I could tell!!)

LOSERS!!

Jessy and I, like the rest of the EX-students that are still in Manchester, regularly nip into our old Uni, MBS, to use the computers. I especially do this a lot because I’m jobless, the idea being that I can use the Internet to more efficiently find a high-paying job. This is what one of this year’s new students says to us.
I quote almost verbatim

“You guys have finished, right? If I had finished, I wouldn’t be able to come back here. It would be a shame for me to come here”

The sub-text for this quote evidently runs somewhat like this:- “What a bunch of losers you are!”

Konstantinos Charalampous

Sitting in K2 I heard a Greek girl say “Octomber” instead of ‘October’. This reminded me of my good friend from the Moscow Days, Kostas. I wonder if he’s still travelling the islands with Anastacia, tatooing the drifting foreigners, or whether, despite all his efforts, he has been roped into the army and had some discipline drilled into him. I’d be glad for any news about him; we have lost all contact because of our wanderings. Wherever he may be, I wish him all the best, and a comfortable path through life.

In Memorium

My dear friends, let us gather round and spare a few minutes of silent recollection in memory of all those songs that are only half-remembered by the listening public. Top of this list comes a most famous song by The Rembrandts, that goes by the name of ‘Friends’. Another one is ‘God save the Queen’, by…er…. mmm. And also, no-one remembers the second stanza of Rudolph the red-nosed reindeer either.

I came across a most wonderful Swedish saying:- Battre lite skit i hornet an ett rent helvete.

Watching Adam-Hart Davis at work again today on the UK TV History channel. This was the episode about Greek inventions again. I find it absolutely amazing what some people came up with, not having the unfortunate luck of being born in a modern, done-it-all-before society. I was mighty impressed by Archimedes, who not only is regarded as the greatest mathematician of all time before Newton came along, but also seems to have been a rather impressive and original performer in the bedroom sweepstakes, for which he has a special style named after him; namely the Archimedes Screw.
Thousand apologies, but I just couldn’t resist that one J

But I was disturbed watching ‘Life and Death in Rome’, and not because of any graphic descriptions, for I well know that man does amazing (not necessarily a flattering adjective) things under duress. Here historians were quite blithely speaking on camera about how modern-day America was similar to the Romans in respect to the way they dealt with rogue states. Although I suspect the difference between the geographical expansion of the Romans and the economic/ideological expansion of America might be less than we’d imagine. I generally agree with the pragmatic view of the inevitability of war that most historians seem to share, and also know that although there are no winners in war (War doesn’t decide who’s right, but who’s left), it will happen anyway. I guess the hope of learning from past mistakes is too much to ask for.

To move on to happier pastures, here’s what makes drummers a special group of people. Just like any other group of people.
“It became a strange sort of obsession. You carried your sticks everywhere and at mealtimes you’d do it with knives and forks, rattling out marches on the refectory tables.”
And
“I got in such a state about it that I would feel sick at the sight of a drum kit”

Apart from music, another primeval, or perhaps Pavlovian, response comes from the sound of a throaty engine. And if the engine is cradled in the bosom of a two-wheeled bad mother of a bike, then forgive me for abandoning a dying kitten in the middle of a busy highway that I may get a better look at it.

Oh, and I watched the end of this year’s rallying again, in Perth. I had noticed how the commentators were commentating upon the high incidence of kangaroo mishaps, and how this might be due to the television helicopters scaring the marsupials on to the rally tracks. Seeing it the second time round, I knew exactly what to look for, and the first to hit a bounding kangaroo actually had a perfect shot from the on-board camera of its tail sticking up whilst dragged along at approx 80 kph for 500 metres or so. I’m a petrolhead who believes in cycling as a mode of transport, so how do we amalgamate the two ideas?

Belaya Noch

..or White Night, for those not fluent in Russian. I got another invitation to a party at Late Room today from the Russian Society, except this time I don’t know when it is, simply because it’s not mentioned. Oh well, I guess I’ll have to meet them another time.

I wrote this last night

I like so absolutely have to share this most super-dupery time I had yesterday. I bought a multipak (why don’t they call it multi-pack?) of Cheesy Wotsits and as I sat down to enjoy them bag by miniscule bag, I had the even more delightful opportunity to peruse the amazing jokes they have printed on the back. Having not abased myself before the Altar of the Cheese Snack for an extended period of time, I was unaware of the fact that the jokes had actually been updated from the old favourites. Now, I am bearing in mind that the target audience for this particular (and all other such) snacks are the pre-career criminals (that’s before the age of 15 in this country), but even so…

Q: What is an astronaut’s favourite place on a computer?
A: The space bar.

This joke is just wrong on so many levels, I am experiencing Lost-Rambler-Syndrome just planning my descriptive path through all of them. I actually feel like Picasso must have when he looked up from his Art and realised not all people were as ugly as his mother.
(I was going to use this Wotsit story for a one line throwaway joke, but look how much mileage I got from it!)

Before I go any further, I’ve got a big shout for these mystical little people with the ears like the Palo Alto telescopes who scour the world and select the best of World Music (with capitals, mind you) for my delectation. I got to hear about Oumou Sangare, and I’m now pretty much determined to get her album. The last time I felt that way was when Zoe attacked Phil with a hot iron down at the Pub because Sheila was seeing Barry (I have no clue what I’m on about, but I’m drawing on my less-than-expert knowledge of British Soaps hoping this will draw a picture of Great Moment and Occasion for those Eastenders fans out there). No, actually it was Estrella Morente that last scared me with her…. (ooops Naz, what happened? No more adjectives?). “Where were you when KFJ died?” What about “where were you when I heard Estrella for the first time?”, eh?

Along with these gems comes an insight into altruism. As I read this book about living as a farmer/herder in Andalucia, I see the importance of sharing in the community that amongst these people doesn’t even have a name, or at best is called ‘being neighbourly’. A simple example of ‘What goes around comes around’, perhaps. And this a concept which we are still, thankfully, familiar with. Karma, I’ve heard it called.

Imperialism II

After having a shut-eye at 2 a.m. (thanks to fiddling about with a god-awful game given me called ‘Imperialism II ‘ (if that was the second attempt I’d hate to see the first version)), I am rudely awoken this morning by the sound of my phone set full blast on ‘Sultans of swing’. Oh, yes, today’s the busy day. I’m due for a bit of kneeling and grovelling at the bank (their grand payment in to my account didn’t last long), followed by mind-numbing talks at Britannia Building Society, a spot of lunch, and then more of the same at RBS. As I loiter in the library killing some time after a successful raid on the HSBC coffers, I’m told that Britannia have no advisors in that day. Which makes me wonder why I was specifically booked in then. This puts paid to my carefully managed schedule, so following a leisurely amble I turn up at old MBS, where as an already ex-student I’m not unwelcome, although I keep getting “what’s he still doing here, tha’ bloody Lurker” looks from people.
Anyhoo, I’m off now to RBS, to see if they can boldly go where others dare not.