Won’t you marry Me?

In an error of judgement worthy of Boris Johnson I got Ang the Soldier Solder boxed set for Christmas.  Downton Abbey for those of us who like a bit of rough, starts off with a badly realised version of Northern Ireland during the troubles and an IRA funeral – you know they’re IRA because everyone has a mullet.

Even though it’s 1991, the UK still looks like the worst part of the 1980s: huge hair, huge shoulder pads, huge telephones. In fact, the only thing that isn’t big is the production values.

But the scariest part of all isn’t even Ang’s incomprehensible desire for Robson and Jerome – the bastards who kept Unchained Melody in the charts, long after we’d gotten over Ghost.

No, it’s a very young Cersei Lannister playing a squaddie’s wife:

The future queen of Westeros representd
The future queen of Westeros

And she hasn’t. Aged. A year.

That’s some dark, dark magic.

 

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My superhero name is Señor Moment

Herpderp
Herpderp (Photo credit: bryan thayer)

I’ve passed a milestone: two senior moments in the one week.

While starting a meeting on Monday I made a point of loudly and clearly asking the person to my right if our product manager was in since it’d be useful to have him go over some things.

“Hi” said the person to my right doing a little wave.

Yep, I couldn’t see him even though I was looking straight at him.

Once isn’t so bad, right?  It’s a Friday, I’m tired, it’s hot, and all want to do is get out in the sun.

The next day Ang heads into town without me; for some reason, having to look after a slightly agoraphobic, misanthropic, yipping gerbil in a busy shopping district doesn’t appeal (no accounting for taste…) so I made plans to meet up with her  in a new crepery once she’d finished her chores unencumbered.  I get there, late as usual, and get a table outside before sending a text to say where I was and to express my irritation at being made to wait for 30 whole seconds. Shortly after the ‘message sent’ alert fades from my screen I hear a slightly confused voice  saying  “Uhm…Damo?”.  Oh, here it comes, the stroke’s finally happening. I’m being called to eternal rest. I’m coming grandma!

No.  Ang was sitting at the table opposite me and had been for five minutes before I’d turned up. Cue much merriment (and, more than likely some sympathy directed at Ang) from the waitresses.

I think it’s time for a holiday, but before you judge me, watch the following video:

See, it could happen to a bishop.

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exit (-1): NULL pointer exception in dmr

First Steve Jobs and now Dennis Ritchie.

Turing Award laureate Ken Thompson (left), BS ...
Image via Wikipedia

A C Man’s Lament – Rupert Goodwin

The problem I find when I’m looking at lines
Of programs all written in C,
Is that the syntax and grammar resemble the stammer
Of a dyslexic demoralized bee.

I’ll bet any man here (I’ll wager a beer),
Can’t guess how to copy a string.
The mess is dramatic, all [
. & _ !

Pointers collected, and thrice indirected,
Collated in structs and compiled,
When traced by debugger can make coders shudder,
And conditionals drive a man wild.

I don’t wish to seem bitchy, but if only old Ritchie
Had been strangled a birth by a Nurse;
And the fate that I’ve planned for all Kernighan’s clan
Is unprintably several times worse.

I find that the pain begins with the main(),
The only way out is to hack it.
The one bit of syntax that keeps my mind intact
Is the very last }

I hope that this ode is clearer that code
I write in that monstrosity.
You might think that Pascal’s a bit of a rascal,
But the ultimate b*d is C.

My program is calling (in structure appalling),
I must finish my poetic plea.
But, let’s all face it, use Forth, LISP or BASIC,
Whatever you do, don’t use C.

Translator’s guide to pronunciation:
[ = open square bracket
. = dot
& = ampersand
_ = underscore
! = pling
} = close curly bracket
* = star

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Bakelite Sandwich

Over the last couple of weeks we’ve been using WeightWatchers at home, just to lose a couple of the extra pounds the lard fairy sneaks under my pillow when I sleep.

Most of the recipes are pretty decent, although they resemble cardboard origami more than cooking, but this slouching beast deserves its own category in lists of hazardous materials.  I should have known something was wrong when it called for 705 ml of soured cream. Have you ever seen 705 ml of soured cream in one place?  Worse, when combined with chicken, enough beans to cause global warming, and a pound of chillies it looked like the stomach lining of Ridley Scott’s Alien or the opening scenes from The Thing.

After forty minutes in the oven the soured cream had separated into lumpy globs of curd in between layers of tortilla that had turned into a sort of organic Bakelite. I just hope it doesn’t gain sentience at the bottom of whatever Cambridgeshire landfill that has to deal with its pulsing evilness.

I still have flashbacks when I smell cumin.

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Professor Hawking, Dragonslayer

Apple Sticker
Image by je@n via Flickr

Listening to an e-book using Voiceover on the iPad doesn’t always capture the essence of the scene.

Picture it: riding a dragon for the first time. Excitement, flames, the leathery beat of blackened wings.

Uhm, not so much:

iPad Voiceover doesn”t quite capture the moment. (mp3)

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Scenes from a Zombie movie

20110522-141830.jpgJohnny Goodhero is tired. He’s been surviving for months since the cliché virus struck. His only friends a baseball bat and a 9mm pistol. One last plan, to get across a Zombie infested battlefield without being eaten, to the temporary safety of a nuclear bunker.

Johnny tries not to gag as he covers himself in rent zombie guts. The squishy noises sound like the the horrific noises that come from your parents’ bedroom at three in the morning when all you want is a glass of chocolate milk. A terrible set of bling begins to form, liver earrings, colon necklaces, a visceral survival suit.

He crawls. So slowly, the Somme of moaning and scratching all fogged around. An invisible orchestra takes up a beat, industrial timekeeping keeping pace with the undead hearts of his costume. He reaches forward to a key lying forgotten on the ground. Salvation named Chubb. Touching one side, it’s so close, an undead arm reaches for the other. Crescendos. Slow motions. A flesh-stripped face comes into view. Johnny raises his piece. Recognition and hunger leap at clean food. Trigger pressed. An explosion.

“Wake up. It’s already twelve and we have things to do!”

I really shouldn’t read the Walking Dead last thing at night.

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