Saturday, 31 January 2015

The Daily Teaser — 31-1-2015: I’m Lovin’ It … 

You know, it’s got to be said, Britain’s had a mild winter, so far.

At least, this part of the UK has.

This morning, though … ?

This morning, I’m up, about … 

And definitely shivering in the cold.

It’s not snowing, in Brentwood.


But’s there’s a definite frost on the ground … 


Friday, 30 January 2015

The Friday Question Set — 30-1-2015

Hmmm … 

I know it’s relevant … 

I know that chap’s — possibly — the greatest wartime leader the UK had … 

But … ?

Hmmm … 

I THINK we’re over-doing marking Winston Churchill’s funeral: titan though the man was.

I could well be wrong: but who knows … ?


The Daily Teaser — 30-1-2015

Oh … dear … 

I don’t know about you, but I like weather.

More specifically … ?   I like sunny weather.

Well … 

Let me re-phrase that: I don’t like it when it’s raining or snowing.

I think I’m like most people I know: I have to be in the mood for these things … !

The reason I mention this … ?   Is quite simply the fact today’s payday: which means heading into town … in the rain … !

Nice … 


Thursday, 29 January 2015

The Daily Teaser — 29-1-2015

Hmmm … 

You know, I had a quiet night in, last night.

You didn’t … ?   I had a quiet night in, last night.

Just in case you hadn’t realised.

A quiet night, with nothing to do, means a movie, of course.

Frankly … ?   I’m glad I had a copy of Hancock in: I’d’ve been dead bored … !


Wednesday, 28 January 2015

Hancock — Big Budget FUN!

28th January, 2015.

You know, there’s nights when I get bored.

I’ve the night off, no-one’s around, nothing’s on TV, and frankly … ?

Frankly I’ve no need — right at the moment — to get romping on writing Teasers: nor to knock out a batch of the accompanying slideshows.

What to do, one wonders … ?

Especially if one has no actual cash with which to head out.


Personally, I like to catch a movie, if possible.

Or listen to music.

Or write … 

Or … 

Well, there’s plenty of stuff I do.

Tonight … ?

Tonight, wanting a film — and only having a few pounds in my iTunes account — I raided my collection.

Frankly … ?   Frankly, I’m glad a copy of the 2006, Will Smith film, Hancock sitting around.

I’d’ve been rather bored, without.


The Brentwood Gazette’s Weekly Teaser — 28-1-2015: Lego O’ Me … !

Hmmm … 

Well, that’s … something … 

According to the BBC news — I tend to have it showing during the day — the Tories have accused Labour’s shadow health secretary of trying to ‘weaponise’ the National Health Service.

Hmmm … 

I see their point: that politicians, in the run up to the election, are use the NHS to their own electoral gain.

Fair enough.

Me being me … ?

Me being me, I’ve got this mental image of nurses — in uniform — holding Tommy guns.

Very lacy uniforms.

And shiny nail varnish.

Yeah …

You really don’t want to know, do you … ?


The Daily Teaser — 28-1-2015: The Challenger

Oh, now that’s sad … 

Did I tell you I belong to an amateur dramatics group, many years ago?

And thoroughly enjoyed it: I think I’d not have been the pub quiz-master I became, without the basics I learnt there.

And from Aleene Hatchard, the woman who ran it for many years.

Sadly … ?   Sadly, it seemed Aleene died on 17th January of this year: of Pancreatic Cancer.

I’m saddened to hear it: and can only offer my condolences to her husband and children.

I think I, like others, am someone who owes her a lot.

RIP, Aleene.


Tuesday, 27 January 2015

The Daily Teaser — 27-1-2015

Hmmm … 

Hmmm … … … !

Hmmm … … … … … … … !!!!!!!

It’s Tuesday.

And frankly?   Frankly, Celebrity Big Brother STILL hasn’t finished … !

OK, I’m not complaining too much.

There is, after all, plenty of interesting TV doing the rounds: including the potted history of Magna Carta I’ve got on in the background.

David Starkey always manages to knock out a good one, bless him.

But, guess what?

There’s still no Gotham.

Honk, bloody honk!


Monday, 26 January 2015

The Daily Teaser — 26-1-2015: Incredible India

Right … 

I think I can SAFELY say I need a new router.

Or possibly iPod … !

Actually … ?

Either those … ?   Or the BBC’s iPlayer Radio app needs to be a little better designed. 

Last week’s episode of The Unbelievable Truth does seem to be taking it’s time, loading up.

Oh, well … 

I guess listening to the recording I did of the repeat, yesterday, would be a good thing.

After all, you never know when Ed Byrne, talking about Egyptology, would be handy … 


Sunday, 25 January 2015

The Daily Teaser — 25-1-2015

Where’s me tea … ?

Ah!   There … !

Sorry, left it stewing in the kitchen.

At ANY rate … ?   At any rate, today is one of those rush day: I’m up early, as I start work, early.

Which is kind of a shame.

What’s just been announced on the new is the fact the New Horizons probe is due to send back its first photos from Pluto, today.

It’d be interesting to see those come in.


Saturday, 24 January 2015

The Daily Teaser — 24-1-2015

You know, getting up later than usual can be fun.

No, really!

Especially if you’ve had a late night, watching a movie.


Granted Lucy wasn’t a stunner.   It was enjoyable, though.

Enjoyable, but very flawed.

Either way, it meant I had a late night, after writing the post about it.

Only to discover — this morning — I was out of the medication that helps me deal with my under-active thyroid.

Looks like I’m off to my GP’s, then.   Who close early, on Saturday.

Let’s I don’t miss them!


Friday, 23 January 2015

Lucy: Hmmm … 

23rd January, 2015

You know, that’s rather nice.


Seeing something you’ve added to Google’s G+ social networking service, showing up in a quick Google search.

I think so, anyway.

I think it’s nice enough to mention, anyway.

OK, OK, it’s possibly completely irrelevant … !

It’s just nice to see one’s name in lights … !


The Friday Question Set — 23-1-2015

Ever get bored on your afternoon off … ?

I do.


Personally, I’m just glad I’ve a big — ish — media library.

When I’m writing, for the blog or the Gazette, it’s handy to have something on in the background.

Right at the moment … ?

Right at the moment, the BBC’s 1976 version of I, Claudius is very good company.


The Daily Teaser — 23-1-2015

Would you know it?

My alarm clock worked … !

Or went off, I should say.

Which is all good.   I’m not at work, today: which means I have a) the day off on payday.

And b) a chance to go shopping.

OK, hours and pay have gone down, in the post Christmas slump.

AND it’s bloody freezing.

But none the less?   A day off’s a day off.

I might even be able to catch a movie … !


Thursday, 22 January 2015

The Daily Teaser — 22-1-2015: Introducing Macintosh

Drat … !

Drat, I slept through my alarm, again … !

Which is awkward, as I’m working, today.

Frankly, though … ?   Frankly, I’m starting to suspect there’s something mildly wrong with the alarm clock I use.

Seemingly, I can’t reset it, that easily.

Oy heh … !


Wednesday, 21 January 2015

The Brentwood Gazette’s Weekly Teaser — 21-1-2015: Monte Carlo Or Bust

Well, that was mildly embarrassing … !

I thought I had a doctor’s appointment, this morning … and didn’t … !

Turns out it’s on MONDAY!

Boy, I know how to shoot myself in the foot, don’t I … ?

Oy veh … !


The Daily Teaser — 21-1-2015

Bleugh … !

My arms … ache … !

Still … !

I have to admit to having had one hell of a fantastic night, on Monday: go-karting at the staff Christmas do.

My arms still feel like two bits of lead piping, though.

Damn stiff, in others words!

Still … ?   I’m off to me doctors, today: for something completely different, I should add!

And muscle isn’t the worst of it!


Tuesday, 20 January 2015

The Daily Teaser — 20-1-2015: Wannsee

You know, I have to admit to sleeping through my alarm, again.

Not that I actually mind, this time: although normally, I’d be a little frantic.

The reason I did those?   Is another late night.


This one, funnily was the works (admittedly delayed) Christmas do.

We all went go-karting.

I think we can say one thing.

I think we can say everyone had a whale of a time!


Monday, 19 January 2015

Blu-ray Discs: Ripping Movies and Avoiding a Bag Of Hurt.

18th January, 2015.

I’ve occasionally written pieces, here, about DVDs.

DVDs, movies, TV series, all sorts of media.


Occasionally, I’ve written about how to use a programme called HandBrake to rip DVDs.

In other words, to re-code the contents of a DVD — whether those contents are TV shows or movies — into a form that can be played on a computer, iPod or other media player, or tablet.

Partly as back-up.

Partly because I feel if I’ve bought a copy of a film, it’s my copy of the film: and I should be able to watch that film on whatever device I own.

Whatever that device happens to be.


The Daily Teaser — 19-1-2015

Hmmm … 

Am I the only one who finds that annoying?

I don’t know about you, but I’ve been watching the TV series, Gotham.

And thoroughly enjoying it.

What’s annoyed me, though … ?   Is the fact the show’s on a mid season break: something done by a lot of US TV companies.

Personally … ?

Personally, that’s irritating the hell out of me.

Granted, it’s not fault of Channel Five, the show’s UK distributer.

But I find it annoying.   Having grown up in the UK, where the mid-season break isn’t common, I see a TV series is one whole and entire unit: designed to be watched one episode at a time, over a course of a few months.

Having such a break?   Having such a break is — to me — both annoying, irrational … 

And bloody stupid.


Sunday, 18 January 2015

The Daily Teaser — 18-1-2015

Drat … !

I slept through my alarm, again … !

I hate sleeping through my alarm.

Still … ?

The one good thing is that I can turn Around and say I got a good night’s sleep: and nearer to finishing the book I’m reading.

Robin Hobb’s The Royal Assassin.

Riveting stuff … !


Saturday, 17 January 2015

The Daily Teaser — 17-1-2015

You know, gently playing in the background, right now … ?

Is The Good Traitor, last night’s episode of The Musketeers.

Frankly … ?

I have to admit, I’m thoroughly enjoying series two!

OK, granted, it’s probably nothing like the original novels.

But it’s great fun!


Friday, 16 January 2015

The Friday Question Set — 16-1-2015

Ooooh, that’s better … 

I jaunt managed to have a quick snooze: after a bit of a late night.

It has to be said, that definitely helped.

Even though I’m now looking at the (metaphorical) clock, and wondering where the day.


The Daily Teaser — 16-1-2015

Another day, another dollar … 

And another late night.

Another late night, happily working, I should add.

Saying that … ?

Saying that, I was glad to get home: get off, showered, and off my aching feet.

And in bed, with a good read.   I’ve a few more days before I have to get The Royal Assassin back to the library: I’d like to finish it, before I do.

So last night … ?   Last night, I was up a little than I should have been.

The Royal Assassin is worth the effort, I think.


Thursday, 15 January 2015

The Daily Teaser — 15-1-2015: A Night At The Museum … 

Well, that was embarrassing … !

You’ve possibly worked out I’m working, again, haven’t you … ?

I am.

It’s nice, after so many years on benefits, to be able to earn my own cash.

What’s embarrassing … ?   Is when I get my shifts mixed up … !

Basically, I went in, last night, when I’m actually supposed to be in, tonight!

OK, I managed to get another Weekly Teaser written for the Gazette.

But, boy … !


Wednesday, 14 January 2015

The Brentwood Gazette’s Weekly Teaser — 14-1-2015: Titan and Other Moons …

You know, I’m getting urges.

Mostly … ?

Well, mostly for some sugar in my tea.

Strange but true!

So I’m in something of a rush: as I’d like to nip out, shopping.

So, without much further ado?


The Daily Teaser — 14-1-2014

You know, I like my sleep, I really do.

There’s times … 

Well, there’s times I don’t.

Especially when I can’t actually drop of.

As I couldn’t, last night.

Lord knows what’s happening there: but just recently, getting to sleep’s been tricky.

I’m assuming that — in part — working shifts doesn’t help.

After all, getting to bed one in the morning, some nights, probably doesn’t help.

The pleasures of a working life, eh … ?


Tuesday, 13 January 2015

The Daily Teaser — 13-1-2015

Hmmm … 

It looks like CentCom — the US military’s Central Command — got both a Twitter account, and a YouTube account.

Nice, if that’s what you want to look at.

It also seems President Obama’s been giving a speech about how the US is going to beef up its cyber-security.

Always a good thing.

The shame of it … ?   Is that CentCom’s had its Twitter and YouTube accounts hacked by Islamic State.

There’s possibly an irony, there … 


Monday, 12 January 2015

The Daily Teaser — 12-1-2015

You’ve probably been reading me for long enough to know — or have worked out — one thing.

I hate getting up late!

No, really!


Frankly, today, I’m  an hour later than normal.

Mind you … ?

Mind you, I actually got to bed at about 1·30: after finishing work.

I think I can let myself off … !


Sunday, 11 January 2015

The Daily Teaser — 11-1-2015: The Grand Canyon

DRAT … !

And double drat: I forgot to put my alarm on, last night … !

I hate doing that!

Especially on a day when I’m working: I don’t have THAT much spare daytime, and hate to waste it!.

With THAT said … ?

Let’s get a move on … !


Saturday, 10 January 2015

The Daily Teaser — 10-1-2015: Julius Caesar, Or, How To Win A War And Influence People …

Hmmm … 

That’s funny.

I’ve managed to notice that a job in a local office, advertised in a local newsagent’s windows, yesterday.

And managed to jot down the URL for the post.

I think the advertisers may have taken the page down.

As what I actually got was a message telling there’d been an error, and the only way I could access it, was on a browser … on the computer system in the office that posted the ad.

Hmmm … 

Yeah … 

That went a bit pair shaped … 


Friday, 9 January 2015

The Friday Question Set — 9-1-2015

You know, there’s a lot going on in France, at the moment.

Honestly, the gunmen who attacked Charlie Hebdo holed up in a printshop in a town in Northern France, and a gunman suspect a police woman, the same day, now seemingly holding hostages in a kosher supermarket in Paris!

Now is POSSIBLY not a good time to mention a little bit of news on my street: as I suspect it’ll get swamped.

But at any rate?

At ANY rate, I’ve just noticed a poster that’s been put on quite a few lamp-posts and French windows in my street.

The pictured one, from Essex County Fire Service: telling anyone parking in our street to do so, carefully.

And to be aware not doing so would block access for emergency vehicles.

Personally … ?

Personally, I’m grateful to whoever’s organised that.

But whoever’s organised these posters has addressed the emergency vehicle access I know I’ve been concerned about for years.

It may not do much.   But I hope these are maintained.

It means we can now say, people have been told … !


The Daily Teaser — 9-1-2015

I’ve said this before: and will no doubt say it, again.

But waking up to an earworm can be weird, sometimes.

An earworm, before you ask, is a song that’ll happily play itself — or bits of itself — entirely in your head.

Sometimes for no apparent reason.

Certainly for no apparent reason that I can see, this morning.

Lord knows why, but I’ve woken up with Linton Kwesi Johnson’s Reality Poem, from Forces Of Victory, unwinding in my head.

There’s only one thing for it.

Passing it on … !


Thursday, 8 January 2015

The Daily Teaser — 8-1-2015: The Mona Lisa

Hmmm … 

Looks like the good folk at the Gazette haven’t managed to post up the front page to their website.


At any rate … ?   Going by that, it seems Brentwood Council’s in discussion with the independent chain, Genesis Cinema, to build a cinema.

With at least one screen.

Unfortunately, the way the article reads, it seems to imply that’s ALL we’d be getting: although on closer reading?   On closer reading it looks like the Council want’s to use the five screen Genesis owned — on the Mile End Road — as the model for a cinema in Brentwood.

Hmmm … 

Personally, I think a five screen venues could be a touch too small: and that Genesis could well be charging premium prices that would make it unaffordable for many.

If, as the Council says, building does start by November?

We’ll see.


Wednesday, 7 January 2015

The Brentwood Gazette’s Weekly Teaser — 7-1-2015: Lucky Number Seven …

Hmmm … 

I have to admit, I’ve just seen this week’s Brentwood Gazette.

The front page … ?

Tells us that Brentwood Council’s impressed with one potential candidate for a cinema in William Hunter Way.

Put forward by a chap who runs an independent cinema in Mile End.

A luxury one screener seems to have forty seats!

It’s not a cinema, from what I can see: it’s a wide screen TV in someone’s front room!


The Daily Teaser — 7-1-2015


I slept through my alarm!

I hate sleeping through my alarm!

OK, granted, I have a day off, today.

Granted, I can go back to bed.

Still … 



Tuesday, 6 January 2015

The Daily Teaser — 6-1-2015

Hmmm … 

Well, that helps … 

I told you, yesterday, I’d had my hours cut: and don’t see them going up, this week.

Sales being what they are.

I don’t — this week — see them going back up: although hopefully this will improve.

 I also think I might just have to sign up for Working Tax Credits: which is something I’m always iffy about.

Either way … ?

Either way, I know I managed to get into work, yesterday: just to let my boss know how I felt about it.

I’ll give her credit: there wasn’t much she could do or say, beyond reassuring me everyone was getting a slice.

Still: she was able to both reassuring … and very understanding about a whinging staff member.

That’s a good thing, I think.


In The Mouth Of Madness: That’s An Experience … !

In The Mouth Of Madness
5th January, 2015.

Hmmm … 

That’s … frustrating … 

I’ve been watching a movie, tonight: and patient letting my computer back up to an internal hard drive.

Which — for some reason — is now, suddenly full!

Oh, at least, not backing up, as Time Machine suddenly need more space than it used to, under Snow Leopard.

Money being what it is … ?

I can’t actually afford the £60 to buy a new internal drive of the size my machines telling me it needs.


Especially when you consider I HAD the money … 

And had to spend it on the extra drive — and the associated carrier — in the first place … !

Effectively, if you’ve got £60 you can spare … ?   I’d LOVE to hear from you … !

That’s if moving my iPhoto library doesn’t work*!


Monday, 5 January 2015

The Daily Teaser — 5-1-2015: Kampuchea

Hmmm … 

That’s awkward … 

You know I’ve recently started a job, don’t you … ?

It’s … well, maybe not the best: but it’s a good group of co-workers, and generally, a pleasure to be at.

I think I’m going to have to have a quiet word with my boss: as I’ve had — as all of us — had my hours cut.   Down to ten hours in my case.

On my hourly rate, and with those hours, I am literally, better off not working.

The reason for this?   Apparently, the branch has had a serious fall in sales, compared to last year.

I’m not complaining too much: after all, the hours in the run up to Christmas has been pretty damn good.   And it is, at the moment, just this up coming week’s hours.

 Still … I think sitting in silence isn’t necessarily an option.


Sunday, 4 January 2015

The Daily Teaser — 4-1-2015

Drat … !

I forgot to turn my alarm on … !

I hate forgetting to turn my alarm on … !

Especially when I have to be at on a given day … !

For starters?   It means getting started on the Daily Teaser, later than usual.

And … ?

AND it means a lot more exclamation marks than needed … !

Arrrggghhh … !


Saturday, 3 January 2015

The Daily Teaser — 3-1-2015

You know, I’ve just looked out of my window, this morning.

It’s raining.


It’s still dark of a morning, at this time of year.   Which gives the view from my window a sheen that makes it quite pleasant to see.

Until I look in my freezer, of course.

I’m reminded of a few things.
  • There’s not much food in the freezer.
  • I need to buy some.
  • I’m off, today and working tomorrow: and don’t know when I’ll next be free to go shopping.
Looks like I’ll be getting damp, going shopping.

I can only hope I can find my hat … !


Friday, 2 January 2015

The Friday Question Set — 2-1-2015

Weird … 

Did I tell you I got an external blu-ray drive for Christmas?

I got an external blu-ray drive for Christmas.   So you know.

Which happily let’s my rip my blu-ray collection to my hard drive — or collection of them, I should say — so that I can watch them on other devices.

Or stream them to my Apple TV.

So you know, I use MakeMKV to turn the blu-rays into .mkv files: then recode them into mp4s with HandBrake.

With the quirk that every file shoes the same name: unchangeable by the usual renaming process under OS X.

Awkward: until a quick Google search found MetaZ: a handy little metadata editor that’s corrected the issue with the files I’ve ripped, so far.



The Daily Teaser — 2-1-2015: Killer On The Road*

Oh, well, that’s something … 

The Musketeers is back on, tonight.

I have to admit, I’ve never read the original books: something I might have to remedy, after I’ve got through the pile I got over Christmas.

At ANY rate … ?   At any rate, the series is back on, tonight: although with a new character — Rochefort, played by Marc Warren — replacing Cardinal Richelieu.

Apparently, Peter Capaldi’s now doing something else … 

Personally … ?   Personally, I’d like to see how that goes.

If it’s anything like the first season, it could be fun … 


Thursday, 1 January 2015

The Daily Teaser — 1-1-2015: New Year’s Day

I think I can officially say ‘Yuck’ … !

No, really … !

You see, I’ve actually worked out what the most exciting thing to happen to me in 2015: at least, so far.

It’s Bronchostop cough sweets!   Oh, and a bottle of Olbas oil.

Yes … I’ve got a cold.

Or been sold something that that’s supposed to stop a horse.

I think we can say — effectively — they haven’t helped my cough.

Hell of a way to start a new year … !