Zone Doubt, a.k.a. 'Surreal Я Us'...
Joules, trusted by... dozens... to make a drama out of your crisis...
:: JAT :: WaveWrights :: Publications :: Joules... on writing [on hiatus] ::
I live to write. It's not wise to get in my way.
August 2011: the earlier posts in this blog are a mess, the result of me changing the format some time ago. I'm working to edit the entire blog from the beginning, but with over 4K posts and sodall time for such luxuries it's going to take a while... [02/09/16 - Now reached 09/10/2004]
If you come across any words you don't recognise in this blog, take a look at the Taylorspeke Glossary in the left-hand infopane, you'll usually find a definition there.
Tuesday, January 31, 2012
After yesterday, today was a bit of a letdown, although I did manage to get good use from Ken's Firstday ticket and get up to kitchens (for a new salad spinner - the transforming one finally fell apart - ice-cube trays for freezing home-made stock, and a decent garlic press). Haven't accomplished much else though.
Labels: nowt really
Monday, January 30, 2012
Monday. I don't like Mondays.
Actually that's not strictly true. This Monday was surprisingly productive - the usual wash, watched eps 2 and 3 of Onna's 'magical girl' anime DVD (comments when I've watched the whole thing, but it's very strange. Though whether that's because I'm completely unfamiliar with the genre I don't know. Lutra tells me that having one of the main characters die off in a very early episode is a sub-genre, so at least there's precedent for that...), repotted two orchids, cleaned the waterball (the pump is now too noisy for the bedroom so it's sitting amongst my orchids making them feel all loved-up), made stock from yesterday's chicken carcase (with parsley, sage, rosemary and thyme - and three fresh bay leaves - picked from the garden) and got shot of a whole load of client stuff. All before lunch.
So not a bad start to the week. I have the proposal to work on tomorrow - really want that sent off by the end of the week.
Sunday, January 29, 2012
Next part of The Poppy Tales - Affaires - now posted - link above!
Saturday, January 28, 2012
[sigh] So I had to get down to Sainsug's yesterday, and while I was there I found they had Breville steamers in the end of season sale, £20 instead of £50. I opened one and had a good read of the instructions, then came back to discuss it with Ken, who thought it sounded good (as did I) and the price was excellent: he then went back to pick one up. Got it home, took it out of the packaging - only to find there was no instruction book inside (or warranty card). Well of course there wasn't - this is us we're talking about.
So I went back this morning and explained to customer support what had happened, and they happily took a booklet out of one of the other boxes (and kept the box back). I used it tonight - it's very good, with a 'keep warm' option. It has a timer option too, and is very efficient - will need to cut down the cooking time. The old steamer has done us proud but was second hand to start with and is definitely on the way out.
This evening we watched the latest Lovefilm rental, Zookeeper. We expected not to really enjoy it, but actually it's a delight, a little predictable but funny and charming, beautifully avoiding a cheesy ending. One to get when I find it cheap!
Back to Poppy...
Friday, January 27, 2012
We had a pair of robins in the medlar, earlier! Fingers crossed for birdlets later.
I finally managed to get the OP pic onto my Deviantart account last night. That was fun. Now need to learn how to associate it with the overall Tf categories...
It has been manic here this week. And for some completely unknown reason I can't get IE to load (no great problem except I've been using it to download vids from Youtube). It was working fine yesterday - today, nothing...
Starting Poppy4.5 tonight.
Wednesday, January 25, 2012
[g] So the pic is finished and now posted over at WaveWrights, in the Galleries, which I have tidied up a little - ye gods, it hadn't been changed since 1999! Sooo last century. As ever, I'm a writer, not an artist, Jim, but I think it looks OK.
Muse is happy now and will let me get back to Poppy and the umpteen other things I'm supposed to be doing. Although Lutra did wonder what his back side would look like, nudge nudge wink wink...
Tuesday, January 24, 2012
We've finally been given our new green recycling box for the plastics and tetrapacks - saves me lugging 'em to Tesco and Sainsbug's every week.
My drawing muse doesn't bite all that often, but since finding the Transformers dance the Thriller vid on Youtube I haven't been able to get it out of my head (I blame OP's sexy li'l wiggle, myself), so of course muse had to stick his oar in and demand I draw a humanised OP dancing... [g] It's almost finished, and will be posted over in Wavewrights when it's done.
Monday, January 23, 2012
And the usual Monday. Roll on spring - I'm itching to start planting...
Labels: nowt really
Sunday, January 22, 2012
Poppy 4.4 - Intrigues 2 posted in The Poppy Tales (link above).
Saturday, January 21, 2012
So, as a treat for the end of this lot of exams, Kai and I went out today, Firstday Southwest bus ticket to Trowbridge (the Town Hall is currently covered in scaffolding and plastic sheets, but that's what it would look like if they weren't there), via the beautiful little town of Bradford-on-Avon.
Fun ride, bouncing along winding roads barely wide enough for the bus. My father always used to say that the country roads in the South West were designed by rolling drunken Saxons wending their rolling drunken way...
We stopped for an hour at BoA, checked out the tangle of tiny streets called The Shambles that constitute the centre, and went for a walk along the river, where we saw a heron perched on a railway bridge pier and Kai caught sight of a kingfisher.
It's a lovely place, and we plan to go back in the summer, maybe take a picnic along the river. There's a path from the riverside walk up to the Avon and Kennet canal that we could investigate...
But of course, since I can't go anywhere these days without tripping over a Defender...
Snazzy silver too. Heh, and complete with its own canine defender.
Trowbridge was OK. A couple of malls and a handful of charity shops, where Kai managed to pick up the sequel to one of the books he's reading (James Patterson's When the Wind Blows) and I found a copy of The Forever War, which I read back when
Then it was a pleasant trip back as night was falling, Ken made fajitas for dinner, and we watched eps 19 and 20 of Heroes. All in all a very nice day.
And Poppy4.4 is three pages in, so hoping to have that online later...
Friday, January 20, 2012
Today was a day for Minis (lost count) and extremely sexy sportscars. A crimson Ferrari passed as I was waiting for the bus, then there was a gorgeous blue beauty (couldn't see the marque, alas, and I'm no car buff. Well, more of a one since the Tf thing, but still...) on the trip.
Mundane day. Up to Broadwalk, back, into town for skoosh and soaps, then a small (hah! No such thing) shop at Sainsbug's. Legs aching now.
But tonight's sunset was beautiful. I was on the bus on my way back, so Ken took a few pics for me...
This - Transformers dance to Thriller - is wonderfully daft and very cute. Lutra's comment was "Oh, someone had way too much fun with this [g]...." and it's true. (Tf's from right to left are Skyfire, Hot Rod (latterly Rodimus Prime), Perceptor, Ultra Magnus and Drift. I think. I'm not really up on the G1 charas. Then there's OP, of course, and the purple one at the end is Shockwave.) It's chuckleworthy though, and very well made.
Thursday, January 19, 2012
Well, 123-reg is now sorted out and the BCP site up and working, which is good.
I had planned to get up to Broadwalk, just to get out of the house, but the bus wasn't running at the stop up the road because the roadworks at the top of Talbot Hill aren't finished yet. (I swear that last week the note said it would only be Fri the 13th that was affected. It now says until today. Hopefully it'll be back to normal tomorrow...)
So it's been a couple of dull, January days with nothing much happening. Roll on spring...
Labels: nowt really
Tuesday, January 17, 2012
Kai appears to have quite enjoyed his Computing exam, yesterday...
Having problems with 123-reg at the moment. Last week the BCAP Virtual Museum went down - took me a couple of days to convince them it wasn't working - and while it is now fixed, neither Ken nor I can get the email or ftp working. I have no idea what they've done. It wasn't us, we've made no changes to it since before Yule. That took up most of the morning.
This afternoon was the first of 3 or 4 visits to the dental hospital. Feeling a little... not worried, exactly, but not exactly sanguine about the whole thing, and having a couple of complete heroin heads on the bus was not exactly the best way to start the trip. Forget images of broken eggs, just use this pair as a reason not to do drugs. They had the attention spans of the average goldfish. (Harmless enough though, and so out of it they'd have fallen over it you just breathed on them.) And what happened when I got into the hospital (after the 25 minute wait to be seen, that is)?
They couldn't find my notes from my last visit with the consultant.
[headdesk] Well of course they couldn't, this is me we're talking about. Apparently they have a six-week backlog at the moment. Someone did go off in search of them but never arrived back (I think it's the Tf haunting continuing, myself: while standing waiting to make the next appointments I heard one of the staff say they didn't supervise 'Cons...). But at least my x-ray was on the system so I didn't need to have another taken.
So the first couple of minutes were taken up by me repeating what I told the consultant last time. Then the very nice young (what's that they say about age and policemen? Like that) doctor explained that this visit was just to take impressions of my teeth.
Ick. Foul tasting squidgy bright pink goo on both top (had to purse my lips for that) and bottom (had to stick out my tongue for that bit. No, no idea why), and then a line of something white along my bottom teeth which was to show the position of my bite when my mouth is relaxed. And all this just to make a denture that I sincerely hope will never be needed...
Anyway, I have two 90 minute appointments in Feb, for them to remove the old root canal filling, clear out any pockets of bacteria and the site of the old infection, and possibly do something that to me sounds like they're going to enlarge the hole to make sure the filling completely fills it. Or something. I was feeling a bit light-headed by then. What happens at the second appt will rather depend on what they find during the first, and whether the tooth can be saved, I think.
So another month of painkillers, oh joy.
Just keep reminding me it'll be worth it in the long run, to be out of pain for the next however many years...
For the uninitiated, 'Cons is the short form of Decepticons...
Sunday, January 15, 2012
Poppy4.3 - Intrigues - now posted in The Poppy Tales (link above).
Saturday, January 14, 2012
Oooh - a parcel arrived from Asia (with pretty floral and fruity stamps) containing a boxed set DVD of Mahou Shoujo Madoka Magika, with a CD of the original soundtrack. I assume this is from you, Onna? I understand why you warned me about the cover. So much pink... Will make time to give it a go in the next couple of weeks... Thank you!!
K&K took advantage of the glorious (sunny but very cold) weather to ride on buses this afternoon. They ended up at Street, wandered around for an hour (apparently there are seven charity shops along the high street!) then bussed back. The plan had been to come back later, stop off at Farrington Gurney or Chewton Mendip and do a little skywatching, but as it happened the forecast for cloudless night skies was wrong. Eh well. Maybe next time.
Poppy4.3 nearly finished.
Friday, January 13, 2012
Tyjer is not a lap cat - unless I'm under the lion, then he can ignore that I'm there...
Kai had his Maths exam today. He says it was fun... [grin] That's my son!
We finally have a touch of winter - forecast is for sub-zero temperature over the weekend. I've tried to protect the few plants in the greenhouse - French tarragon, Vietnamese coriander and my lemongrass - but not sure it'll work. We'll see. It's already bloody cold out there!
Finally caught up with the client site stuff - 'ooray! Can play tonight. Poppy4.3 hopefully.
Finally, Sue sent me this - it's absolutely beautiful and it made me cry...
Not often I say it - but I wish I could write like that...
Thursday, January 12, 2012
Shopping. Broadwalk then Tesco. Fascinating stuff...
Wednesday, January 11, 2012
... ooops... Got so engrossed in a fic last night it was 2.30 am when I realised I hadn't written up the blog, and by then it was really too late...
Anyway - yesterday was weird. Woke up at 5 am after a mostly sleepless night (faaaar too hot) and couldn't get back to sleep, so headed off to do the Sainsbug shop before Kai had even left for school. So early, in fact, that the deli wasn't yet open and the bakery hadn't finished the first batch of loaves...
Got the next demi-jon of wine on the go when I got back, then more client stuff. Then in the evening the very long Tf:A fic.
Kai says his Psychology exam went OK. Tomorrow he has Physics...
Today's been... odd. Ever woken up and felt as though reality has slipped sideways just very slightly? Like that. Haven't managed to get anything useful done, even though there's some client stuff I really must tackle very soon. Maybe tomorrow will be more sensible.
Monday, January 09, 2012
Officialdom, the next part of Consular, now posted in The Poppy Tales (link above). Enjoy!
Labels: The Poppy Tales
Sunday, January 08, 2012
Ken dug the new heuchera bed for me - on the patio area, between the mahonia, the big fern and the grass beside the steps - a small space but it will give them the partial shade they prefer. When I planted them I found that one of them isn't a heuchera at all - it's a tiarella Iron Butterfly. That's fine though, as it likes fully shady conditions, so it's now under the mahonia. The other two are heucheras Plum Pudding and Ginger Ale. Kai has moved the native lilies that were in the space to his grove, where they should do well.
He and I pruned the bay tree as well - looks better now, though it still needs a little more attention. Next is the buddleia and the wisteria...
Poppy4.2 - Officialdom - should be ready to post later tonight. (And sort of on that subject, the Defenders are back. Even saw a new one, deep maroon with COUNTY stencilled in white slantwise on the passenger door...)
Saturday, January 07, 2012
We actually managed to get a little gardening done today, and pruned the cherry tree at the front. Well, except for one major upward reaching branch, that will have to go next year. Weather's supposed to be fine tomorrow too: I'd like to make a start on the buddleia, and the bay tree needs a good going over too.
Kai is revising for exams - he has three next week and another the week after. Fingers crossed.
Poppy 4.2 half-written...
Friday, January 06, 2012
[FUGE big grin] Ken says "Birthday present!" so he's now ordered. Take a look at the actual figure and enlarge it. He even has his trademark smirk!!
So that's with folks' pressie money. And Starscream was the one I wanted first, so I am dead chuffed. (Now just have to wait for the others I want - Megatron, Ratchet, OP
In other news, it's been another busy morning with invoicing and sorting out some more books to go (we're desperately trying to streamline), and I now have some fiddly client stuff to get done before I can carry on with Poppy4.2. Oh joy.
[bg] Ken has just reminded me that WaveWrights is twenty years old this year. Happy Anniversary to us!
Thursday, January 05, 2012
Gah, still tired! Got the first bus up to Broadwalk to resupply mealworms and suet berry treats for the birds, back home, unpacked, then straight out to Sainsbug for shopping. When Kai got home we took down and put away the rest of the Yule decorations, then Ken and I went through a load of old videos to see if there was anything worth saving (about three tapes out of a couple of dozen). Still, it's made more space on the shelves.
Introduction, the first part of Consular (the fourth part of The Poppy Tales) now posted - link above. Need a new background tile but too tired tonight...
Labels: The Poppy Tales
Wednesday, January 04, 2012
Slightly less busy day, but still productive. Poppy4.1 now well under way.
Labels: The Poppy Tales
Tuesday, January 03, 2012
[blink] Cor. I didn' 'alf get a lot done today...
Up early. Read Nefarious (terrific story, that). Made stock with the duck carcass and the last leeks from the garden (though got a bit wet digging them up as the weather in the UK is frightful at the moment), put a wash through, did some major orchid care, including moving two up to the bathroom to see if they improve, took down and packed up my tree and the cards. This is GoodTwin's ->
Then watched Dark of the Moon this evening, for reference for Consular. Tired now...
Monday, January 02, 2012
Lie-in, shopping, then Kai and I went out to Hurrans this afternoon. They're having their post-Yule sale, and I managed to pick up three heucheras at half price to start my collection! Chuffed about that. Will take photos tomorrow, and try to decide where we want them to go. I'd like a bed of them eventually, I think. They do look splendid when all grown together.
I also bought another swingy thing for underneath the other seed-feeder, as I'm getting a lot of wastage from that one as well. £9.99 but it'll pay for itself fairly quickly.
Other than that, we haven't done much. Kai is back to sixth form tomorrow: he has exams later this month, so not looking forward to that much. I have Tf withdrawal symptoms, so will probably start the day off with a film. Or Darkness Rising perhaps. [bg] Only three months til I get the whole series!
Will probably start the next Poppy Tales ep tonight.
Sunday, January 01, 2012
Tidy up day today. Sort of. Have archived nearly five thousand emails from last year and deleted them from my hard drive: that'll speed up the weekly scan! Need to do the same with last year's photographs - maybe Tuesday when I have the house to myself again...
It strikes me that Yule and New Year were rather sombre occasions, though with the global financial position I suppose that's not entirely unexpected. Hoping things pick up this year, though I'm not too hopeful.
Labels: nowt really
Happy New Year!
Labels: Happy New Year