Sunday, January 30, 2005

Closer


I really didn't want to see this film as it contains nothing that interests me. I've never seen a Jude Law movie, and I tend to stay away from adaptations of plays, unless there's explosions and crap like that.

However when I got to the cinema, this was the only film about to start and I didn't want to wait an hour for "Assault on Precinct 13", which would have contained explosions-a-plenty! A friend at work had also really enjoyed the film and recommended it.

So I've now broken my Jude Law duck but to be honest he wasn't that good, and I don't see what the fuss was about. For me Natalie Portman stole this movie, her acting is getting better and better.

The fact she plays a stripper who does the splits whilst wearing a thong has nothing to do with it. Honest!

This film also has the coolest movie poster.

New Haircut

Over the last few years, my hair has been increasingly leaving me, am I really that hard to get along with? Rather than trying to cover it up I've gone with just keeping it short. I'd like to shave it all off but never have the confidence to go that far.

Today I went to a number 1 which is a new record!

Now my head is bloody cold when I go out, time to buy a hat, although if I do that it looks like I'm covering it up.

I can't win!

Saturday, January 29, 2005

Lord of Rings Marathon





Well I've had the Lord of the Rings trilogy box sets for a while but hadn't watched them so I decided today to do all 3 back to back.

08:50 Fellowship of the Ring begins.
10:35 Swap to disk 2.
12:07 Fellowship ends and The Two Towers begins.
13:50 Swap to disk 2.
15:40 Enough of the towers, time to watch The Return of the King.
17:45 Swap to disk 2.
19:32 "The End" is displayed. The marathon is over.
19:53 The credits finally end.

So it took me the best part of 11 hours (10 hours and 40 minutes if you exclude the credits) but at least I can say I've done it. The pacing of the trilogy is perfect and the ending, which seemed too long at the cinema, is just right when the trilogy is viewed all at once.

Now, I need to sit through the director commentaries, but that can wait for another day.

Tuesday, January 25, 2005

: Flip The Switch - Chemical Brothers Remixed

One for the bootleg fans. This is the same thing that happened to The Prodigy album a few months back. Give each track from the album to a different bootlegger and get them to remix it. Then bring them altogether on a single website and release them on the same day as the album's release. Fully endorsed by The Chemicals themselves, enjoy!

: Flip The Switch - Chemical Brothers Remixed :

Burns Night

Well I thought I'd celebrate Burns Night tonight and cook the meal.
So one haggis, and a bowl of mashed neeps and tatties later, I'm bloated. There was no way I could finish it, but then it was a meal for 4 I was attempting to devour.

I'm such a fat pig, but it was a one-off!!

I might be going to Japan!!

Over the weekend I received a bunch of trip invites from the coaster club and I think I'm going to do the whole lot!

In May there's a trip to Holland, just a weekend, but to 3 parks I've never been to.
In July there's another trip to Hungary, Austria and Italy, which again I've never been to.

Finally, there's the biggy! A 2 week tour of Japan. I had been undecided about this trip as Japan is my dream destination and I wasn't sure I wanted to do it just for coasters. But the club have some sight seeing opportunities and it's come in less than I thought it would be, just £2300. I only hope I get picked, if the club gets over subscribed.

With the good news on the flat, assuming it goes ahead, I can afford all 3.

WOOHOOO!!!!!

Monday, January 24, 2005

Good News from the Bank!

I went to see my mortgage advisor today and he found me a new mortgage. The bonus is that I will end up paying £100 a month less than if the last purchase had gone through.

I really was destined not to get that flat.

Saturday, January 22, 2005

Elektra


Had nothing to do today so I thought I'd go and see another film today, the third this week. The link to Daredevil is pretty weak and there is no Ben Affleck (hurrah!!). The story is OK, with Elektra, an assassin, sent to kill some people who she then ends up protecting.

The effects are pretty good, especially with the character Tattoo who has animals tattooed on his body coming to life. Good to see Bob Sapp typecast as a muscular strongman, given that he's a 340lb Mixed Martial Arts Fighter I doubt he'd get much else. One lame character though was a guy who's ability seem to being able to balance a large coin on his hand. I'm sure if I read the comics I might have known more about him.

Overall its OK, not outstanding but then doesn't try to be.

Wednesday, January 19, 2005

Team America


The second film this week was a night out with some team colleagues to see the puppet fest from Parker & Stone. South Park is one of my favourite animated films, the intro with Uncle Fucker just cracked me up and kept me laughing throughout the film.

I was expecting Team America to be more of the same but it didn't hit the mark in quite the same way. The comedy was much more broader than South Park with some clever digs at Jerry Bruckheimer and Hollywood in general.

My favourite piece of dialogue was..
"A car with wings, now I've seen everything"
"Have you ever seen a man eat his own head?"
"No"
"Then you haven't seen everything, and neither have I"

The cruellest joke had to be the one aimed at Matt Damon. I can't wait for him to be introduced as "Maaahhht Daaahhhmon" from now on.

The worst bit of the film had to be the throwing up scene which I couldn't stomach, pun intended. I rarely have to close my eyes but I had to here, and it was just puppets. I have emitophobia (a fear of vomiting) so scenes like that I have to turn away from.

Tuesday, January 18, 2005

A bit of a scare

Got off the underground and went to get some food only to discover my wallet was missing. I had arranged a team night out and had a fair amount of cash in it, along with the cards. I called the office to see if anyone could see it at my desk and was told "no".

Panic sets in, so I decide to retrace my steps on the off chance that I've dropped it.

I ask the station if anything has been handed in and was told "no".
I spend the entire journey back to work thinking how I could have lost it and conclude that the pikey looking girl next to me on the journey home must have reached under the arm rest and picked my pocket.
I ask the station at the other end if anything has been handed in and was told "no".
I arrive back at work and check with reception and was told "no".

I get back to my office and can't see it anywhere on my desk, so I sit down to start calling around to get my cards cancelled when I realise I've just sat on my wallet which had somehow fallen out of my jacket onto my chair as I left to go home.

So this very happy bunny is pleased to find his wallet but is condemned to go to hell for blaming an innocent party.

Monday, January 17, 2005

Million Dollar Baby


I fancied a week of movie going as there had been a wave of new releases that I'd wanted to see. The first was this one from Clint Eastwood and as I'd been recommended to see Mystic River and blown away by it, I was expecting the same with this.

What I got was something much more complete and better. This had a better mix of comedy and tragedy than his previous effort. Some great acting from Hilary Swank and Morgan Freeman, with some very clever scriptwriting.

Whilst I tend to avoid films that are nominated for Oscars, I'm glad I've seen this and I hope it does well.

Saturday, January 15, 2005

Found a new flat

Spent today back down in South London viewing some more flats.
Found a nice one with 2 bedrooms and cheaper than the one that fell through.
Similar flats in the area are going anywhere between 3 and 10 thousand more so I've picked up a bargain, because it's in great condition. The living room is a lot smaller than the other one but bedroom and bathroom are bigger, plus this one has the second bedroom.

This isn't as close to the shops as the last place was, but is much nearer the station, a bonus!

I put in the offer and it was accepted so I'm back in the process again. Here's hoping this one goes through.

Webcam exploit through Google

Apologies if this sounds a bit geeky...

If you search for "inurl:indexFrame.shtml Axis" in Google you're able to access webcams for various buildings around the world. I think you can drop the "Axis" for more results.

A pub
An airport
Tunnel construction

Quite cool for those with voyeuristic tendencies.
I've also found some more searches if you're interested just check out this link.

Thursday, January 13, 2005

4 guys and a cheerleader

This is just crazy...
Pump Up The Movie

A trailer for a movie for those who liked "Bring it On"

Wednesday, January 12, 2005

Scaredy cat?

Ananova - Jet forced to turn back from US

I wonder what this guy had in his shoes?

The flat has gone

Today I gave up on the flat purchase.
The agents called for an update and I told them I couldn't accept the lease in it's current form patched up with insurance policies to fill the gaps. When I came to sell it wouldn't be a good proposition. I also wasn't happy with the lack of response from the landlord and not sure I'd want to have to deal with him again.

The seller came back and knocked off a decent amount to get the lease rewritten but couldn't commit to the landlord being keen to do his bit. So I chose to not to go with it.

So after 2 attempts totalling a year, I'm now back to square 1 over a thousand pound wasted. Roll on 2005!!

At the end of episodes of Inspector Gadget you'd always get some useful advice so that the program could be deemed to be educational. If this posting was an episode of that show then I'd now be telling you to stay away from flats above commercial properties as the leases are often shoddily written because only a single legal party is responsible for their creation.

Monday, January 10, 2005

Trip to the hospital

Got home after a crappy day at work (too much to do, too little time) to get a message from my parents. My brother had been knocked off his motorbike after a car pulled out on him (quite normal for motorcyclists it seems).

He's OK, managing to come away with only a fractured leg. The paramedics expected a 30mph collision to be more serious. He was disappointed that it wasn't broken, as he was hating the fuss he was causing. However he's content that it's fractured, if there was nothing but bruising he would have been quite pissed off.

So his leg is all plastered up but he's OK, which is the main thing. To cheer him up I raided the vending machine and bought him a kit kat. The marketing slogan "have a break" seemed ironically appropriate..

Sunday, January 09, 2005

Jerry Springer the Opera


This was shown on BBC2 last night.
For those that haven't heard of it, it's a musical version of the show with some strong imagery and plenty of foul language, done in a pseudo-operatic style. The Christian community have been protesting about it saying it's blasphemy and inappropriate for a public funded station. Many of those protests have come from people who haven't seen the show though, as is usually the case with these protests.

Personally I found it really funny, even with the language which I'm not a huge fan of. I don't think the complaints were justified, it's no different from me, being an atheist, complaining about the channel showing "Songs of Praise" (a church based program for those that don't know).

I think if anyone had a right to complain it would be the Klu Klux Klan who are ridiculed by having them break into a tap dance routine. But then I'm sure the Christians wouldn't protest about that, after all they're not the subject.

I'm sure there will be plenty of press on the complaints in tomorrow's papers.

Friday, January 07, 2005

A new year, a new start

Happy New Year everyone.

I realise that I've not been posting enough on this to make it worthwhile so I've made a resolution to be a bit more active. So expect to see some more posts and I'll even fill in the gaps from the last couple of months with the more important stuff.

Flat nightmare

I had a meeting with the solicitor today and got some bad news with the purchase.
In short I seem to have a knack for finding badly written leases.
The vendor has filled the gaps by offering indemnity and insurance policies but it doesn't put me in a good position should I choose to change mortgage provider or sell on.
So I've asked for the lease to be rewritten, the money to come from knocking the asking price down by the required amount.

However that will take time and because it's been 8 months since this started I need to find out if the market has changed. I may be able to find a better property now, in which case I needn't bother continuing with the current one.

Wednesday, January 05, 2005

How much of my time do they want?

We had a 3 minute silence for the Tsunami victims today at work, as was happening all over Europe. I chose to leave the office before it started as I didn't feel it was right to be told how I should remember the tragedy. Yep it's bad that it happened but when the media (who is driving this) asks for my time on a selective basis then I oppose that.

I can't deny that what happened has been pretty devastating but it got 3 minutes today and another 2 on New Years Eve. Even our war veterans get less than that (one rememberance event I have no problem with). I think when Ken Bigley was killed there were 2 minutes there as well (and he's just a fool who ignored Government warnings in light of some quick cash). 9/11 got also got 2 minutes. In what is appearing to be an increasing trend, it won't be long before we're staying quiet for 10 minutes. Asking for all this time demeans the value of it.

The thing with all of these is that in most cases (except Bigley) we can't forget them if we lived through the event when it happened. There are other events such as Rwanda that are just as horrible but because there's no story there for the papers to sell we don't have it pushed in our faces, and feel obliged to remember and pay up.