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[Play] Rewind, Repeat [Dec. 30th, 2013|05:54 pm]
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[Mood |productiveproductive]
[Music |Soundtrack - The Crow]

Common themes from 2012:

2013Collapse )

Past exploits from: 2003, 2004. 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011 and 2012
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[Play] Merry Christmas [Dec. 10th, 2013|12:13 pm]
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[Music |Soundtrack - FTL]

Following our usual tradition, we're sending out minimal Christmas cards; instead, a joint card for everyone:

Community orchards

Merry Christmas :)
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[Push] Oh My [Nov. 11th, 2013|12:21 pm]
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[Mood |organised]
[Music |Soundtrack - The Crow]

We seem to be juggling once more: buying a house (in Walthamstow), preparing for a wee bairn and refactoring my role in the office. All immensely cool, but somewhat stressful
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[Meme] Revisiting Foods To Try [Jan. 27th, 2013|04:36 pm]
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[Mood |curiouscurious]
[Music |Soundtrack - Morrowind]

Stolen (and corrupted) from nisaba, foods to try - I've eaten eighty-three of the hundred entries, so wanted to focus on the ones I've not tried:

Not EatenCollapse )

Deliberately not whittered about the ones I've tried, but happy to comment if people are interested

EatenCollapse )
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[Play] Better Late Than Never, Probably [Jan. 5th, 2013|04:09 pm]
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[Mood |productiveproductive]
[Music |Soundtrack - Morrowind]

Sadly over the cusp of 2013 by virtue of being out of internets, however: 2013 in review!

2012Collapse )

Past exploits from: 2003, 2004. 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010 and 2011
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[Meme] Day 23 - Most Meaningful Christmas Memory [Dec. 23rd, 2012|12:30 am]
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[Mood |sleepysleepy]
[Music |P!nk - Try This]

Aged twelve and a third, I think, being given a electric train by one well-meaning aunt and told by another that giving me books was now inappropriate as a present because I had too many for the gift to be remembered (or be meaningful)... for them

It was a particularly excessive Christmas, with cousins visiting from overseas (so double the number of presents) and celebrations rolling over onto several days. On one hand, it was excellent and full of family and wonderful. On the other, it started me thinking about privilege and commercialism and knowing people and the gift being for the giver as much as the receiver

Also, today's 'theme' was a bit redux
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[Meme] Day 22 - Name All Nine Reindeer Without Using a Search Engine. [Dec. 22nd, 2012|04:28 pm]
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[Mood |tiredtired]
[Music |Soundtrack - The Hobbit]

Rudolph, Donner, Blitzen, Doc, Happy, Sleep, Grumpy, Sleepy and Fred1

1Went to a comprehensive. Kept getting into fights
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[Meme] Day 21 - Detailed Explanation of Your House on December 25th [Dec. 21st, 2012|01:27 pm]
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[Mood |busybusy]
[Music |Soundtrack - Skyrim]

Given this is a public entry, you get a previous year's: there's a traditional wreath on the iron-wrought outer doors, leading you into the main reception. Christmas tree behind the day bed, decked in reds, golds and silver. Hand-made and shop-bought baubles hanging under the supporting beam that nominally separates the lounge and dining room, the occasional gecko flitting between them. Our circular dining table is laid out for ten, which is a bit of a squeeze normally and positively abundant with crackers and napkins and the like. Exceptionally cheesy Christmas music plays in the background, a copy of Indiana Jones sits nonchalantly next to the CD cases, and strategically placed nibbles waft the aromas of bacon, prunes and pastry. Hidden in the brooding teak cabinet, Secret Santas wait

In the kitchen there are pans on every hob, a cheery bronze glow from the turkey in the oven and trays of accouterments lined up for whilst it's resting. Feast-making tools are scattered around the preparation area or being washed up. There may also be an open bottle of sherry. Early guests sit in shorts or summer dresses on the high stools or, dolled-up with spare aprons, chop and primp vegetables. In the corner there's a stash of beer, wine and champagne

Upstairs, in the computer room, two cats vie for sunbeams amidst the remnants of scattered wrappings from early-morning gifts...
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[Meme] Day 20 - One Christmas Wish [Dec. 20th, 2012|09:55 am]
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[Mood |awakeawake]
[Music |Background - Pugsley Snoring]

Given the degrees of harrowing and nasty stuff happening, right now, out there in the world, my Christmas wish is simple: everyone should "be nice" to be everyone else, regardless of race, colour, gender, creed, preference or persuasion. Be nice is a euphemism for "care deeply about the well-being of and do something about it"

Go to it, people
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[Meme] Day 19 - Your view on Eggnog [Dec. 19th, 2012|10:37 am]
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[Mood |perky]
[Music |Abney Park - The End Of Days]

Full of win. Shares many common ingredients with cookies, but with extra spices and rum! It's like an exotic small frothy pirate! Don't understand why anyone would object...
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[Play] Good Gifts [Dec. 18th, 2012|11:57 am]
[Tags|, , ]
[Mood |cheerfulcheerful]
[Music |Soundtrack - Morrowind]

Following our usual tradition, we're sending out minimal Christmas cards; instead, a joint card for everyone:

Safe deliveries and a Solar cooker and water heater

Merry Christmas :)
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[Meme] Christmas Advent [Dec. 18th, 2012|11:37 am]
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[Mood |cheerfulcheerful]
[Music |Soundtrack - Morrowind]

Inspired by foxy76 and inbetween_girl, a somewhat belated countdown to Christmas:

Day 01 - Audio of one of your favourite Christmas songs: Growing up I enjoyed Do they know it's Christmas by Band Aid - everyone coming together, putting egos aside (on screen at least) and the theme of other people rather than "my loot" all resonated. Of course, I can't mention it these days without referencing Africa for Norway :)

Day 02 - Your favourite Christmas of all time: Last time we had everyone together for Christmas. It must have been eight years ago, we had my grandparents, parents, siblings and all the cousins on my mum's side for Christmas Day at my grandparents. We also had a massive tree and everyone got everyone a present. That year I got everyone a woolen beanie, so there's a photo of them all in finery and a little hat

Day 03 - Best gift ever received: From my cousins, a tin boat that was tealight-powered. You put it in the bath and it used the heat from the tealight to push water out of two pipes under the boat

Day 04 - Best gift ever given: Aside from the beanies, it has to be a handbag for euphuistica: inside the wrapped bag were little wrapped gifts of the stuff she normally carries in her handbag

Day 05 - Favourite Christmas television: Difficult one, not having watched TV properly for some time. Probably one of the comedy specials from Smith and Jones or similar

Day 06 - Favourite Christmas film: Die Hard 2. It has santas, jingle bells, snow and Bruce Willis in a vest

Day 07 - Favourite memory: Going for Boxing Day walks either on the sea front or one of the parks near my grandparents

Day 08 - A holiday dessert of your choosing: Absolutely has to Christmas Pudding with brandy butter - it's like concentrated mince pies without the pastry getting in the way and I'm not allowed to pick Christmas cake since my sister and I tunnelled into the side of ours and mined out the interior three days before Christmas Day one year

Day 09 - Best holiday traditions: Whilst I was in the UK, being a Christmas Elf with my mum - preparing people's stockings and little Christmas treats after midnight mass and then helping prepare Christmas dinner the next day. In Singapore, preparing our Orphan's Christmas with a house full of random friends

Day 10 - Do you give to charities or other people around the holidays? Which is your cause of choice?: Yes, I send a virtual Good Gifts card rather than physical ones. Expect this year's soon :)

Day 11 - Are you any good at wrapping presents? Describe a gift wrapped by you.: Depends what you mean. I can wrap effectively and I can wrap humourously. If I recall, my mum received a point-and-shoot camera one year, wrapped as if an AK-47

Day 12 - Favourite Christmas book: Don't think I've knowingly read a Christmas book, unless Narnia counts?

Day 13 - Describe your typical Christmas Eve: As per Day 09, in the UK this would have previously been midnight mass and then Elf-dom. In Singapore it was usually some kind of party, occassionally themed with mince pies. Re-establishing what it should look like now we're back

Day 14 - Sneak a peek at gifts or wait it out?: Wait it out. What kind of crazy fool tries to sneak a peek

Day 15 - Do you still believe in Santa Claus? If no, how did you find out he was fake?: No. Do not recall a time when I believed he was real, but he wasn't an emphasis when we were growing up (though the magic of Christmas was/is)

Day 16 - Most meaningful Christmas memory: Realising I was in Foreign Parts for Christmas for the first time

Day 17 - What is your absolute favourite part of the holidays? Only one.: Boxing Day. Replete with food, surrounded by family and either out for a brisk walk or curled up with a book or film

Day 18 - If you could spend the holiday any place in the entire world, with whomever you want, where would you be and who would you be with?: In a cottage in Scotland, filled with family

And the other challenges, for my reference ...Collapse )
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[Move] Sublime, Meet Ridiculous [Feb. 28th, 2012|05:08 am]
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[Mood |amusedamused]
[Music |Background - Early Morning Pugsley]

Attempting to understand why companies work in such a ridiculous manner is not helped by the occassional early morning call currently needed to fully disentangle ourselves from Singapore

Exhibit A: Woke up at four o'clock this morning to speak to our previous mobile supplier who managed to cancel our phones a month early (at perhaps the point at which they were needed most), tried to charge us for reconnection and have now failed to disconnect us. After speaking to four people (first tried to help but wrong department, second whom told me they had not reconnected us but recontracted us and then hung up on me, third tried to help but wrong department and finally fourth one had a clue) we have succeeded in disconnecting one phone out of two - and will pre-scheduled to disconnect the second one in ten weeks time to avoid a termination fee. Given we have left the country and will not be using the second one (to the pointing of maybe removing the SIM and selling the handset), I'm struggling to understand why I'm forced (by a four hundred quid early termination penalty) to schedule the disconnect rather than simply pre-pay the two months line rental! Still, if it makes them happy

Exhibit B: Our references for the new flat were nearly rejected by the professional reference checking company on the basis that we could not produce a council tax bill (can't rent somewhere without one, can't get one without renting somewhere). Our new letting agency had to step in and override the rejection. Given therefore that the only thing the reference agency was able to check was my salary (and I could have provided that to them either via HR or in the form of the contract I have with me for that very purpose), why were we charged sixty quid each for the privilege?

We're seeing such delightful customer focus from some other places that my belief in a corporate divide (between those who want your custom and those who want your money) is being very firmly cemented
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[Plan] Minor Reinsertion [Feb. 15th, 2012|08:51 am]
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Tomorrow, from seven. Prospect of Whitby

Posted via LiveJournal app for iPhone.

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[Move] Whirlwind Week [Feb. 12th, 2012|05:59 pm]
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So. Living in Greenwich, where our temporary flat courtesy of work is, is fairly much full of rar. Coming back the the UK in the midst of a cold snap has been, ahem, interesting to say the least. Suffering second hand jet lag from the cats, bless their black furry hearts, was unexpected... As was finding out that my new boss has left the firm on my first day!

Been busy wrangling banks and letting agents and phone companies, so we now have UK mobiles and a flat that we should be renting from the first weekend in March, if everything works to plan. Details for both to follow in a locked post

Planning to surface socially this week, now the key wranglers have been wrangled, but in Brighton for Second Christmas with my folks for the weekend so it may be more subtle and phase than epic :)

Posted via LiveJournal app for iPad.

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[Play] Some Significant Milestones [Dec. 26th, 2011|10:59 pm]
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[Mood |busybusy]

And so, the year in review:

2011Collapse )

Past exploits from: 2003, 2004. 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009 and 2010
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[Play] Late For A Very Important Date! [Dec. 26th, 2011|10:21 pm]
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[Mood |busybusy]

Following my usual tradition I'm not sending out Christmas cards; instead I'm doing a joint card for everyone. Despite this, it's still late!

Vegetable Seeds, a Medical Sniffer Rat, an Order for Handwoven Saris, a Peace Expresso and a Bee House

Happy New Year :)
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[Plan] Reinsertion [Dec. 19th, 2011|10:08 pm]
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Contract came through Friday, so plans for our imminent return now moving at speed, on track for 1st February! Excitement is building as we wrangle kitten-shippers, international packing teams, my successor for the current role, new boss, taxmen at either end, letting agents in three incarnations and so forth. Plus sort out a final Orphans Christmas, micro-trip with our current international visitor, weddings plans and potential final visitors!

Posted via LiveJournal app for iPad.

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[Rock] :) [Aug. 30th, 2011|08:37 pm]
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[Mood |happyhappy]

As some of you will have seen on Facebook, Gill and I got engaged on on recent fly-away trip to Venice. We were properly romantic and everything - with sunsets, bended knees and small bridges over canals being involved. Not set a date or a venue, but likely to happen when we're back in the UK next year :)

Ring
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[Plan] Summer Is A Moving Target [Jun. 28th, 2011|10:24 pm]
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[Mood |geekygeeky]
[Music |Soundstrack - EVE Online]

As mentioned, we plan to be back in Blighty in a few short weeks, a precursor to more permanent plans, so please engage in Extreme Diarisation at your earliest convenience :)
  • Sat 13-Aug: Gill's Folks
  • Sun 14-Aug: Gill's Folks
  • Mon 15-Aug: Gill's Folks
  • Tue 16-Aug: York! Anyone about for afternoon tea? foxy76?
  • Wed 17-Aug: London! Patsy?
  • Thu 18-Aug: James' Folks
  • Fri 19-Aug: James' Folks
  • Sat 20-Aug: James' Folks
  • Sun 21-Aug: Brighton, then London. Ex-COGS chapes and chappesses, fancy a pub lunch?
  • Mon 22-Aug: London Beer? Dinner?
  • Tue 23-Aug: Venice!
  • Wed 24-Aug: Venice!
  • Thu 25-Aug: Venice!
  • Fri 26-Aug: Venice, then London! Kaslik?
  • Sat 27-Aug: Returning to Singapore
Anything Goth-ish happening on the London nights? Anyone free in the daytime on the London days? Anyone fancy having a couple of house guests for the London nights?
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[Meme] Self-Census [Apr. 4th, 2011|10:12 pm]
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[Mood |mellowmellow]
[Music |Puretone - Addicted to Bass]

01 Apr 2011: Living in a four-bedroom terrace house with euphuistica and two cats, in the middle of 'The Heartlands', Singapore's equivalent of suburbia. Thirty-three. As is common here, on a two-year rental. Working for the same multi-national investment bank I've been with for coming up to ten years, running a team of twenty software engineers and with a major project release looming. Commuting twelve miles by bus and then tube. Playing online and thinking of connections, mucking about with Web 2.0 and Objective C. Battlestar Galactica, Machinmata

01 Apr 2001: Living in Brighton, within sight of the sea, married to Her and with a hamster called Magellan. Twenty-three. Future 'secure', contract signed for the same place I'm working now. About nine months before LJ. Preparing for my final year project, commuting eight miles each way by bike, thinking time when people aren't trying to run me off the road. Playing online and thinking big thoughts, mucking about with XSL, VRML and compilers. Pi, Bablyon 5

01 Apr 1991: Living in Brighton, in my parent's house, with my cat and the family's cat. Thirteen. At school, before my friends turned on me and playing ping-pong in breaks. Working in the localo supermarket for pocket change. Commuting on the bus, four miles through the centre of town. Pre-internet, so reading intensely and roleplaying with mr_ck. Dune, Highlander, Mad Max, Tour of Duty. First time I used the moniker Jhaelan

01 Apr 1981: Living in Brighton, same house. Three. Leading up to the famous motorbike cake with the black icing and the most short-stayed family pet, a collie-labrador cross called Diamond who bit me in the face. Generally being .. small and special. Random cartons, Ulysses 31
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[Plan] Next Week's Venue [Jan. 29th, 2011|08:21 am]
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[Mood |sleepysleepy]
[Music |Compilation - Open Space]

Garlic 'n' Shots, on Thursday from 7pm
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[Plan] This Is Not A Comment [Jan. 20th, 2011|12:17 am]
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[Mood |bouncybouncy]
[Music |Red Hot Chilli Peppers - Californication]

Plan for pubbage whilst I'm in London is for Thursday 3rd February. Any suggestions for venues welcome, else I will aim for somewhere central in Borough or Soho and surrounds - shortlist is Garlic 'N' Shots, Pillars of Hercules or Kaslik presently. Assuming a reasonable escape from work, I will aim to be there by six or half past. Grab my +65 mobile number from contacts (via memories or tags) beforehand as I will not have email, LJ or Facebook access except at the start of any given day
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[Plan] Losing My Public Holidays [Jan. 16th, 2011|06:48 pm]
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[Music |Paula Cole - This Fire]

Roughly translated: I will be in London from 30th January through 4th February (this time round Chinese New Year is the Thursday and Friday of that week)

Already reached out to a couple of you for catch-up grubbage, but looks like either the Sunday or one weeknight available for pubbage. Ability to forward-plan suffering from a need for some work-related outtings rather than the usual three-days notice on the trip ;)

Any takers?
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[Play] An Emotional Year [Dec. 24th, 2010|08:30 am]
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[Mood |optimisticoptimistic]
[Music |EVE Online - Ambient Soundtrack]

Goodness, but where did 2010 go:

2010Collapse )

Past exploits from: 2003, 2004. 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008 and 2009
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