Thursday, October 29, 2009

A Round Up Post

So, I had an email from Orange earlier in the week to say they would announce how to get hold of an iPhone, and their price plans next week. That said the market is awash with new smartphones at the moment - just in time for Christmas perhaps? There are to name but a few the Motorola Dext, Blackberry Storm 2, Palm Pre, and of course the iPhone. Not forgetting the arriving soon Motorola Droid, of which I posted about earlier in the week. My phone has died and I am using an old phone with my current sim, so I am in the market for one of these new all singing, all dancing, and "cooks too", phones. The only question is which way to go? I lean towards Motorola and iPhone because of the Orange connection, but Blackberry Storm 2 is also a possibility.

Wondering which my next smartphone is gonna be on


In other news I am reading James Lee Burke's "Sunset Limited". I have always loved crime novels and this one is no exception - it's an award winner. When I was on holiday I was reading another one of his novels - "In The Electric Mist With the Confederate Dead", which has been made into a film starring Tommy Lee Jones. If the film is half as good as the book it should be awesome. It's already available in the US on DVD, and in the UK in February 2010.


Weather forecast for the weekend is wet again, good job I picked up another water butt from the tip at the weekend for the allotment!

Monday, October 26, 2009

Droid vs IPhone

i Don't have an opinion which is better but it's gonna be fun watching them slug it out:

Hobson's Choice

I've been following politics more recently than perhaps I ever have before. Part of this is because of my job but that is "subject verboten" here.

What gets me though is if you've followed the American elections at all you can tell that the man who is now their president had a charisma of leadership right from the start. The bright hope if you like. The man who could probably make a difference (this latter point perhaps wouldn't have been hard given the warm-up act).

In a little over six months time we will be going to the polls. If you follow the ratings probably to elect a new government, rather than reinstate the current one. What gets me however is that neither the current "leader" of our nation or his probable successor have any charisma of leadership whatsoever. In fact cold custard is probably a stronger contender in these stakes than either of those two, and before you say anything the guy who'll probably come in third place ain't there either.

This actually makes me despair in our British political system, because we have essentially (and I know this isn't how it actually works), three people who I can't sign up to in any way, shape or form. Three useless - probably in it for the money and not the social responsibility - excuses for leadership this country has ever seen, and I've gotta vote for one of them.

I wonder if Bill and Ben the flowerpot men are available?

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Lazy Sunday

The weather was a vast improvement on yesterday, so I spent this morning at the allotment. It's really the season where the plot gets tidied up and ground dug over ready for next season. All the broad beans are in now, so there will be very little planting to do before early March.

It looks as though those crops, Brussel sprouts & cauliflower that I planted some weeks ago, are really doing well but I'm not sure if they are going to be ready in time for Christmas which was the intention. Christmas wouldn't be Christmas without sprouts (and yes I can hear all of you making that gagging noise as you read this paragraph).

As I sit and type this post the sun is setting already. The clocks changed this morning so we've lost the hour of daylight savings time, but it does at least mean that it will be a little lighter in the mornings on the way to the station, even if the reverse will now be true for the return trip in the evenings.

Writing this post is a form of procrastination at the moment. I should be perusing our bookshelves looking for something to read, instead I started by perusing the virtual shelves on Amazon, looking for Christmas presents for various people. From there I somehow ended up in the blogger editor for my blog and started typing. It is now certainly much easier to do that with the shiny new laptop than it would have been before on the old desktop. I think this is probably why most of my posts were videos. A post of convenience could be recorded at any time and then uploaded when convenient - now I can blog in any room in the house (although no I haven't tried blogging from the bathroom yet - now there is an idea!)

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Book Review

Lousy weather today has forestalled any work on the allotment - too wet, so a video book review for you. Possibly the best book I've read this year and a very strong contender for my book of the year 2009.

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Shagged by a rare parrot - Last Chance To See - BBC Two

Last episode of Last Chance To See is on BBC2 this evening, but this has to be the highlight of the series so far

Saturday, October 17, 2009

Friday, October 16, 2009

It's About the Light

At this time of year I get to see very little of the garden, as when I get up and go to work it's dark, and by the time I come home from work it's dark. What I do see is either by the light of the neighbouring street-lights or from our garden outside light.

That said this time of year is one of the most spectacular. The autumn when greens are turning to rusty reds, oranges and browns. Spectacular colours of retreating plants preparing for a rest-full spell over the winter.

Given what I see of the evenings in the garden I thought I'd share some pictures of our strawberry tree (Arbutus unedo). It's getting to it's most spectacular stage when it has both white flowers and green, yellow and red fruit all at the same time.
It's also known as the "once only tree", because although the fruits are edible you only ever want to eat one because they taste awful (I've never tried so can't say whether this is true or merely garden legend. Blackbirds on the other hand love the fruit, and bees love the flowers.

As it was dark when I took these pictures they are done so by the aid of the camera flash. Perhaps there is a new theme starting here - the garden by "flash"light?

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Flash Forward

I'm beginning to think I am in a minority of one. Everybody else disagrees with me. They all think it's great. I think it's boring, predictable and has some really rubbish acting.

Flash Forward has now been through it's third episode. I watched the first one, and thought it was dreadful, but there was enough of a hook at the end (the only guy in the world who didn't black-out for 137 seconds), to make me watch the second with a hope it would get better. After all not every programme is that great in the first episode, it takes time to get the story going after all. Introduce the characters.

So I watched the second episode. No improvement. Then watched the third one and fell asleep.

I know I am in a minority of one here, so tell me what is it I'm missing? There is something right? Please explain it to me?

Sunday, October 11, 2009

Introducing Mr Robin

I've been working at home today in the garden as opposed to the allotment. It's the time of year when things need tidying up, pruning, raking, sweeping, trimming, lifting, cutting, storing.

I've been kept company most of the day by the birds, at times the sparrows (like comedy sparrows from a disney film) lined up along the hedge, watching me. I think probably waiting for me to leave or go into the shed for a moment so that they can swoop in and get some seeds.

I've also had a living shadow all day. A little robin. He's fearless. He will gladly come within a few inches to see what I am doing. At times I've been frightened that I might inadvertenly tread on him. He doesn't seem to mind human or canine company at all, but is a little wary of the other birds, particularly those that are larger than him like the doves and pigeons. Those of similar size he merely chases away - "my garden, get lost".

I thought you would like to meet him, so naturally there is video, but it won't upload for some reason. I'll try again later, and see if I can make progress.

Tuesday, October 06, 2009

I Love My Blog

Maria asked me about my last post and why I said I was thinking of giving up my blog for fear of being discovered. It occurs that other readers of these post might be interested to know the answer to that question to. So here's an excerpt from the email I sent in reply:

Speaking of blogging and since you've asked ;) I think fear of discovery is probably worse than the discovery itself. As far as I know there is nothing contractually that prevents me blogging, and I am deliberately careful to avoid blogging about work, and topics that cover my work, to avoid any conflict. Often difficult as many of the posts in my head, are about the topics I work on as they are so relevant. We've been trying for sometime to get a work-blog going, to write about some of those work things - but I can't say "hey I'm a blogger, I'll sort it out"; because then everyone would want to read my blog. I do like to keep work and my private life separate, hence the fear of discovery. Last time I moved [blogs] it was because someone at work found my flickr pages and there was a link to my old blog on there, hence the hasty departure. As far as I know no one is looking for me, nor am I being stalked. As my posts are now very much, if not now entirely video posts obviously the fear of discovery is great, particularly as it's far easy to "spot me" when you can see me, rather than plain writing.

Don't get me wrong, I love to blog. I love the interaction with my readers, even if there are only about half-a-dozen. It's just a really weird limbo between wanting to blog, and not wanting to be "found" (by some people at least). Plus having the time to record or write a post, is also very often dictated by work. The fact that I want to do more video, have been looking at new video cameras, and am buying new video editing software with a new laptop, is pushing me in a certain direction, but the fear remains! Now all I need is the time!

So there you have it. I love my blog. I love posting (whether it be the written word or the video post). I'll be sticking to "wild tales" and not posting about work. There will probably also be more video, and hopefully I'll find the time to actually "write" something every once in a while too.

Saturday, October 03, 2009

To Blog or Not to Blog?

I'm not sure I should be blogging anymore. I've moved far more to video posts than I ever have before. Mainly because they enable me to capture exactly what I am feeling at the time they are recorded, rather than relying on my memory for the time I get back behind a keyboard. It also makes me feel quite exposed, and the chance of being "discovered" by someone who I would rather not know that I am a blogger.

I do however enjoy it. So while I continue to think about what I should do. Here are some videos:

Just Seen A Fox

The Fox

In The Shed

And Finally Chicken Poo!