Holiday bungling.

Lindsey phoned up last night for a chat.

It was then I discovered that I had the dates of the Cropredy music festival totally wrong. Instead of it being mid-August, as I had thought, it was the weekend I had planned still to be on my hols in Cornwall.

So, this morning I’ve taken steps to try to bring my holiday forward by a week, meaning that I start it tomorrow rather than in a week’s time.

I need to do some contingency planning.

Fan failure

Hmm.. the fan I bought from Woolworths about 6 weeks ago has failed this evening, meaning that I’m probably not going to get much sleep tonight.

Last night the fan ran at its lowest speed all night and was a godsend. I use the fan to cool down after cycling home also.. but now I have no fan except that on a little electric heater which I can turn the heating elements off on and the bearings on that are a bit iffy.

Oh well, I’ll have to get another fan somewhere. Hopefully it will be quieter (as in less turbulence) than the old one.

As you liked it?

Last night I went off to Wadham college with Paul and his american girlfriend Jenn (who is flying back to South Carolina tomorrow) to see the open air production of Shakespeare’s “As You Like It.”

As 400 year old comedies go it was quite fun. However, it shows its age.

I know that many people would call it sacrilege to say this, but to me it seemed very primitive as stories go. Also, due to the way English pronunciation has changed since 1600 most of the comedy (which are puns) don’t now work. Also, a great deal of the references the play uses for extra comedic value which would have been obvious to an observer of the time fall flat and go unnoticed.

It would be like taking a satire about the early 1970’s Heath Conservative government set on a around the world racing yacht and playing it to a bunch of today’s generation. However good the writing and the comedic references to the captain of the yacht it would fall flat as none of the audience would get the link. (Mr Heath was an enthusiastic captain of a yacht. His yacht, Morning Cloud was well known at the time but is lost in history now.)

In my opinion, Shakespeare is over hyped. It was good and ground breaking at the time but it is of its time.

Today, Rachel, Graham and little Christopher came visiting. They came so that I may show them all the camera shops in Oxford so they could play with digital cameras.

After some tea and some chatter, we got into town at about midday. We visited Morton’s baguette shop in Broad Street for lunch (which was enjoyed by all) before popping off to first Jessop’s the Dixons and finally Morris Photographic.

Jessop’s, as expected, was useless. We stayed in the shop for about 2 minutes if that. Dixons, however, was a different matter. They had the Olympus E10 and E-20p cameras in stock. At £900 and £1300 then with 20% off they were good value. OK, they don’t have replacable lenses but they do have a proper optical through the lens viewfinder. Anyway,, after looking at these cameras it was decided to look at what Morris Photographic had on offer and to have a think.

Morris Photographic tried to push a full £1400 (+£300 lens) Olympus. The salesman was pushy and condescending and didn’t really understand what Graham was saying.

After escaping there we trotted off to Christchurch meadow where we say watching tourists comically fail to punt and discussed digital cameras. The upshot of which was that we went back to Dixons and Rachel bought the E-20p (using Graham’s money).

We came home, played with camera, ordered and ate delivered pizza from Domino’s and drank tea. After this debauchery, they went home.

Resurected emotions.

This evening I’ve played an album I have for the first time in a little while and was surprised (again) by how powerful emotions were dragged up from the time I first got the music and used to play it over and over again…

It was over 20 years ago when I had my first (unrequited) love. The woman was called Vincenza Perkins and was in the 5th form when I was in the upper 6th. I adored her greatly but was too shy to ask her out.. well, not until it was too late and she was going out with someone else anyway.

To cut a long story short, I really fell for this woman and spent many, many evenings lovelorn listening to Jean-Michel Jarre’s Magnetic Fields, especially part four as it was in a minor key and the second part seemed very forlorn, it resonated with my feelings.

Tonight, yes, over 20 years after this disasterous and very painful experience, all those emotions and feelings came back when I played that same music again. It’s very surprising that mere music can do this. But it’s such a bitter-sweet pain and just as intense as it ever was. It’s a scar which will never heal, no doubt.

The last week.

Well, what have I done in the last week?

Hmm, let’s see…

Socially, I’ve been to a BBQ on Saturday evening. It was Katie’s birthday
bash. Lots of nice food and good conversation. Friday night’s happy hour
was fun too, talking with John, Paul, Kat and her boyfriend.

Work’s been mostly setting up the teacher and 6th form student openday stuff.
It’s always an “interesting” experience as academics are hopeless at organising
things or doing things which might actually get students to want to come
here. Anyway, after much work by myself, one of the secretaries and a very
little help from the adademic in charge, something was thrown together. This
morning I took it all apart again.

I’ve bought 3 DVD’s in the past week. Two when getting Katie’s present on
Thursday, 2 for £20 in WHSmiths, Scooby-doo and Spiderman. OK, so Scooby-doo’s
not the world’s best film but it’s a lot better than I expected it to be.

Saturday brought the buying of the Goodies DVD. Much fun watching 1970’s
british slapstick humour it was too. Though, the Ecky-thump episode was nowhere
near as fun as i remember it and the DVD didn’t have the episode “Bun-fight
at the OK Tea-rooms” which I always thought of as a classic. Somehow I can
see why they’re now not shown on telly as there are quite a few things which
wouldn’t be concidered P.C. these days. Then again, they take the micky out
of all minorities (and majorities) equally. There’s a suprisingly forthright
homosexual subtext which I had never noticed before. It’s constantly made
out that Tim Brooke-Taylor’s character is gay but it doesn’t phase Grahame
Garden nor Bill Oddie. In fact they play on it. I thought that rather strikingly
daring, even for today’s telly. Some may think their treatment of coloured
people a little un-PC in some episodes, however, if you look at things as
a whole, they’re treated no differently than French, Italians, Germans, Scots,
or indeed any other people you can label. ie. the programme uses characatures
or everyone equally disrespectfully, so in that sense it’s totally non-racist.

I can’t think of anything else I’ve done of any note so I’ll shut up.