Ravings From The Bog


Failed, sort of!
October 1, 2009, 12:23 am
Filed under: Family, Life, Stress, Thoughts, Work Life Balance | Tags: , , , ,

Mr Blobby

Yeah, it didn’t work! Still 276lbs… At one point during September was 272, but also at one point was 280!

On a positive note though, found more time to read, definitely felt a lot less frazzled and more relaxed and had more time to spend with Sophie (8), who is my personal de-stresser. (previous post)

What else happened in September?

Got an exercise bike, a rowing machine and dusted off my mountain bike. I was off for a week and had a great time traveling down to Mayo and Galway, took oodles of photographs and had my quarterly review which went very well, thank you! So not all bad news. Also, decided on a new blog format which you can find at This Sedentary Life. Not a terribly optimistic title, but we’ll see what happens on the exercise front over the coming months. 😉



Sabbatical

749px-I-276.svgI’m taking the month of September off. Not off work, but off Twitter, Facebook, Tumblr, WordPress, Flickr and the many other distractions that have kept me from proper family/personal time over the last few months. I’ll still be checking my email and perhaps be online for five minutes at a time checking bank balances and cinema times, etc, but that’s it.

It’s an experiment of sorts. I tend to be easily distracted and lose myself for hours on teh internets which has created not a little tension at home, but I also feel that my thought processes are actually being affected by the flittering about that this fine Apple iMac allows me by having so many programs running at once!

So, from tonight at midnight, I intend to use the time saved to do the jobs that have been left undone, to spend more time with my wife and kids (!) and to fix various broken things, and cut the grass rather than pay somebody to do it twice a month, and get moving on a number of things that the “internet inertia” has stopped me from doing.

Now, I could be smart and say that the graphic above represents me “hitting the road” from the internet, but I’ll be honest instead and admit that I weigh 276lbs. My intention in being that honest is to force myself to be looking for a sign for Interstate 256 to post on 1 October – in other words, get off my arse and get some exercise. I intend to take seriously the idea of eating properly (not just my Branflakes) and losing some weight and keeping it off.

I have various other similar intentions for the month of September, regarding work, finance, leisure time, etc.

Wish me luck!



Disgusted.
August 25, 2009, 10:51 am
Filed under: America, Entertainment, Movies, Society, Taboos, Thoughts | Tags: , , , , , , , ,

Marilyn MonroeI am disgusted by the recent sale of a burial plot directly above that of the actress, Marilyn Monroe. The original owner gave instructions before he died that he wanted to be buried face down “facing” the interred remains of Marilyn Monroe – what sort of sick bastard thinks this way? He and his wife were cut from the same cloth obviously. She moved her husband’s remains to make money and has used the actor’s allure to feather her own nest in a mercenary and disgusting fashion.

What will happen in twenty or thirty years? Will another widow decide to sell the new buyer’s plot and make a few more dollars? Will the remains of Marilyn Monroe become a macabre attraction for perverts beyond the grave? From what I’ve read, Marilyn was vulnerable in life and now she’s vulnerable in death. If I had enough money, I’d buy the plot myself so that it would remain undisturbed in perpetuity, rather than become a revolving door of disrespect.

The burial vault above the remains of Hollywood film star Marilyn Monroe has been sold for more than $4.6m (£2.8m).

More than 20 offers, starting at $500,000, were received for the space, located in the Westwood Village Memorial Park in Los Angeles.

The vault had been advertised on the auction website eBay by the widow of the current occupier.

The name of the buyer has not been revealed – except for the initials OS, used to take part in the auction.

The space was auctioned by the widow of the man buried – face down – above Monroe, to raise enough cash to pay off the mortgage on her Beverly Hills home, the Los Angeles Times reported earlier this month.

His remains would be moved sideways to a neighbouring plot to make room for the new occupant, said widow Elsie Poncher.

Her eBay advert was entitled “Spend eternity directly above Marilyn Monroe”.

Richard Poncher died 23 years ago at the age of 81.

The Westwood Village Memorial Park is the final resting place for many celebrities, including Dean Martin, Natalie Wood, Truman Capote and Farrah Fawcett.

The space next to Monroe’s vault was sold in 1992 to the publisher of Playboy magazine, Hugh Hefner, for $75,000.

BBC News



Grrrrrrr!
July 16, 2009, 10:07 pm
Filed under: Blogging, Podcasts, Stress, Technology, Thoughts | Tags: , , , , ,

Recent frustrations with my wireless connection at home resulted in me getting not a little miffed and, after trying everything else, resetting my router. This had the effect of wiping out the settings for my connection and I have been unable to reset the wifi for the last two days.

This has had a number of impacts on my life:

  1. I find myself with “time” on my hands. No constant browsing, Twittering, or gazing at a screen has resulted in a startling realisation that I need to find something else to do, like read, or watch TV, or God forbid, exercise.
  2. I spent yesterday evening in the front (TV) room of the house from 1915 until 2230. This is unheard of. I was receiving strange looks from my wife and son who were unsettled, to say the least.
  3. Yesterday, I bought a Belkin router. Sadly, the CD within was only for Windows XP and older (!) Windows systems – thwarted! This evening, I’m typing this into Word to copy and paste onto WordPress when I finally get my wifi restored.  So this is like a computer fix….
  4. I also bought a T-Mobile laptop dongle thingy which cost £29 plus change – and it’s really crap and intermittent. I also unfortunately spent £30 on airtime, which I’ll use up before I bring the dongle back for a refund. Fucking useless piece of shit.
  5. I’m starting to run out of podcasts! I’m finally catching up with Fresh Air podcasts that I downloaded as far back as last year. This is good news but they’re a little out of sync when I’m listening to pundits etc talking about how they think Obama will fare when he’s finally inaugurated!
  6. Yesterday, I drove a 38 mile round trip to pick up my Macbook so I could use it in an internet café at lunch time to send an email and follow up on some tweets on Tweetdeck and get an internet fix – how sad am I?

So, tomorrow, on my day off, I’ll be visiting Carphone Warehouse to see what they can do to restore my sanity. If their broadband was all it is cracked up to be, I wouldn’t have had to reset the router etc, bastards! I think I’ll go a little postal on their asses!!!



Almost time for home

Starting to tidy up around the apartment. I’m hoping to drive as far as Nerja today as the caves there can be a great subject for some photography. I really enjoyed my trip to Tarifa yesterday. Over three hundred photos and two short video clips taken! Tarifa is the closest point of Europe to African and also has a constant strong wind – something to do with the confluence of the Atlantic and the Mediterranean Sea. This means it is a great spot for windsurfing, so it attracts young fit people in droves. It’s also full of history. I spent an hour and a half shooting pictures around the port area and after lunch, another hour in the old walled segment of the town. Lots to see!

My connection here is very dodgy so I cannot upload any photos yet, but I think I got some nice ones. I’ll update this posting with some pictures when I get home.

Immediate jobs for this morning include finishing tidying up here, as I head off to the airport tomorrow morning and won’t have time otherwise, and sourcing six packs of Chesterfield cigarettes for my brother who was kind enough to email his requirements yesterday evening. I’m also still looking for a gift for my middle daughter – she’s notoriously difficult to buy for.

Back to work!



Puerto Banus, Marbella
June 16, 2009, 10:38 am
Filed under: Foreign Travel, History, Nostalgia, Technology, Thoughts | Tags: , , ,

I arrived yesterday morning around 1110 and once I got my Fix It Again Tony rental Punto sorted, I stopped off at the Spanish National Aeronautical Museum. This is just outside Malaga Airport, and I had often seen the DC3 static display (C47 to us military modeling folk!) parked near the airport but could never find out how to get there. Thank you Google Earth!

A very friendly Spanish chap called Joachim allowed me to see the external exhibits even though the museum was closed (every Monday).

Photos to follow. 

Off to Puerto Banus itself, then, with a 50km drive down the motorway. Lunch at Marrush, the Lebanese restaurant, and then grocery shopping. 😦

Off now to take some pictures along the beach and into the port. I may try to post a video later, but I’m leeching off someone’s wifi connection and it’s very slow.



When Transformers Attack!

Transformer!I was driving through the centre of Belfast yesterday after a great Flickr Meetup walk along the Lagan as far as Stranmillis, when I came round the corner from Victoria Street and drove straight into a Hollywood film set – Transformers! Or so I thought… It took me over ten minutes to find somewhere to park the car (legally). Thankfully, the “transformer” hadn’t stomped off in the direction of Cave Hill. Only one or two other people I’ve shown the photograph to actually “get it”. Am I watching too many movies?