kneeshooter: (serenity)
Just two more sets of photos to pimp, but in the meantime I'm going to take advantage of the fact that I'm not in work to do a bit of an update.

Firstly thanks to all for kind birthday messages. I feel very much of the age where a birthday becomes less of an event, so that people sent best wishes and came out last night to watch me fall asleep in my curry was appreciated. I get the impression from now until about 65 it's the wilderness years of increasing bitterness about lost youth and other opportunities.

The weekend itself was spent in a muddy field. Sometimes this is just shorthand for "LRP" but in this case it's true. Though "cold muddy field" would be more accurate. The advantage of modern/sci-fi LRP is that wearing layer upon layer of technical ski thermal is not only permissible, but advised. At least (with a nod to a Labyrinthe experience) the "cold moon" was represented by a "cold campsite" and very little imagination was required.

The game itself had a slow start for us, but Saturday picked up and there were lots of bits and pieces to play around with to keep us busy (or not). My fear of dancing kept me (literally) in the cold for brief periods but at least my reputation survived. Do spare a thought for poor [livejournal.com profile] bacony though who had to drink two bottles of port on her own, then was literally rained out of bed by a hole in the tent. One new crew member recruited and if the MIA ever do return it's going to be very cosy onboard.

After the game were brief moments of "Oh, I recognise your shape - you normally wear a big pointy mask" and "You made me a cake - and I have only just realised". Unfortunately these were in the car on the way home so I must try and be more observant in the future to avoid appearing rude. Thankfully being in an observant mood by this point meant that I was able to survive the driving snow and rain.

Sheffield tonight is off, which saves me some driving - so more chance to attempt to absorb my OU course by staring at the covers. I must take some more photographs (concluded over curry) but at least it's nearly time for skiing. At which point I'll disappear from LJ again but suspect few of you will notice!!!

Oh yes, photos under the cut from (other) LRP.

Read more... )
kneeshooter: (Default)
... it feels like a very long time since my last confession.

Today I have governors meetings so have the excuse of working from home. Actually I'm having to work pretty hard, but this is a moment of diversion. One of my new colleagues said to me the other day "You've fitted in very well. It feels like you've been here forever." - I think it was a compliment. Needless to say my performance review started with "You're doing very well" and then went on to "Like me, you might find you have to be more politic and less direct at times". I smiled, which was probably the best thing to do in the circumstances.

I'm not sure when I last updated, but since then work has been mostly fun and in my spare time I've been mostly exhausted. Of course I missed Whitby, but then I went skiing in Tignes IN MAY. A long weekend (out Thurs, back Monday, Ski 3.5 days) was just what I needed. We even had snow. There are some pictures here. For the first time I dragged an SLR up the mountains and despite falling on it a couple of times the results were good. I was with a guide off piste for a couple of days (though one was cut short with a hospitalisation) and actually felt my skiing was good enough to make it worth it.

Read more... )

Other than that, weekends have been spent quietly contemplating taking over the world. But more of that in 2009/10.

Last night, because I can remember it, I'll talk about Ian McKellen. Everything [livejournal.com profile] oxfordgirl said is true. He did seem to be very well endowed. Sylvester McCoy also looked alarmingly like a hobbit which added to the confusing buzz in my head. Oh, it was King Lear in Stratford if you weren't sure what I was on about.

This weekend is secret plans, next weekend is WGT. Hi-ho hi-ho it's off again to the Eurozone I go. Though I'm not sure I should after the travesty of the 2007 ill-fitting trouser competition in Helsinki. Go Moldova!!

Now, to work. Still love you all, etc. Even if I don't reply to your emails in a timely fashion and so on...

WIDATW

Mar. 11th, 2007 12:10 pm
kneeshooter: (Default)
WIDATW posts have been suspended recently, partly because writing "Sat on a plane" or "Skiied a small mountain" doesn't take a massive amount of space and is probably even less interesting than my normal entry. However last night I was actually "out of the house" and "at a club" which is quite a novelty feeling.

It started by repeating my normal Birmingham <> Nottingham commute (I really must find somewhere to stay up there more than the occasional night with HOTW [livejournal.com profile] berrega, who understandably doesn't want me to stay too often as he bought his house for "him" and not "him and "me"), swapped cars then off to sunny Sheffield. It's a mark of my worldliness that I'm starting to learn the one-way system of Sheffield City Centre so it was relatively little effort to get to the Corporation.

CombiChrist/Reaper/Northborne was one of those strange gigs where I didn't have a camera. This irritated me slightly but once I'd overcome the urge to mug [livejournal.com profile] spiked_n_bloody for her pass I plugged my earplugs in and settled back to enjoy getting sweaty. Northborne were ok - first half of the set was definitely "by numbers" but the later tracks had a real buzz about them. Reaper do "good music" with "crap live vocals". Poor Vasi - down to only one backing monk - was obviously keen and has been practising his "rock star poses" but he just didn't deliver the vocal goods.

For mainly photographic reasons, CombiChrist are never going to be able to top their Dark City 2006 gig in my mind, but this was pretty damn good. The live percussion was impressive and while I'm not sure what Shaun does, Andy is an impressive front man.

I probably enjoyed it more because the lighting was "challenging" for the photographers at the very least.

Stayed for a bit after, listened to some tunes, got driven back to Nottingham, drove home and fell asleep. Now if only my sleep pattern could be more UK.
kneeshooter: (ickleme)
I'm going out. I may be sometime. In the meantime, there will be regular updates on my photoblog. There might even be a bit of stuff new to LJ over the next couple of weeks.
kneeshooter: (whistler)
Of course it's actually many weeks since Christmas but now I've fought my way through the work-slog, the London-slog and the alcohol induced haze from last night I need to take advantage of my last day of work and the associated very little to do to crack on with my rather long list of personal activities.

Christmas passed me by wonderfully. My best of intentions fell at the first hurdle and spending Christmas Day mucking about up a mountain on a pair of planks proved to be a lot more fun that eating too many Quality Street and fumbling through conversations with relatives. Despite the terrible snow warnings where I was (Zermatt) was reasonably adequate. The upper pistes were in pretty good nick and the lower pistes interestingly hard and/or bare. A little off-piste was possible in Cervinia and my only face-plant was without long term injury to anything other than my pride. Christmas in the mountains is lovely - simply because everything still opens, people don't make a fuss and just carry on as usual.

I do like skiing - it really might keep me away from Dark City this year. But I'm not sure.

New Years Eve I spent with an amount of fine company at the Custard Factory in Brum. It was an interesting experience - I nearly got in a fight; I spent a lot of time listening to FC Kahuna and was surprised by the friendliness of people on drugs. I never get indiscriminate smiles normally... I was mildly amused by people coming up to me asking if I was ok when just standing still. Something about K-holes apparently, so the kids in the know say. Home about 5:45am felt very reasonable.

I do miss a good goth club though.

The last couple of weeks have been a little busy at work, which has been nice. The last two days in London have been mostly as waste of time but it's been sensible to update some of my contacts on what I'm doing next, and better still have some of them say "You should do well at that" when I'm frankly a bit terrified of what I'll be expected to do. Turn the blag to 11...

On Wednesday night I saw 586, Bolt Action 5, White Light Parade and David Ryder Prangley and The Witches at the Purple Turtle. Good lord - I feel cheated and it was only £5 to get in. Respectively they were "she can sing, he can't; mediocre idea, mediocre execution" "jumping around doesn't compensate for lack of musical talent, though they had moments" "competent indie guitar" and "whine whine whine; sure you're not a goth?". Still, company and food were pleasant. Last night I had tapas which was frankly rubbish for a vegetarian and I can still feel every glass of the wine. I abandoned my hotel at 6:30 to come back.

Resonance Live was much better.

Media wise I'm finally reading The Chronicles of Thomas Covenant the Unbeliever after trying once as an early teen and giving up. He doesn't make his life easy... reminds me of so many people I know and indeed myself in the way that most (fantasy) literary characters don't. I've also watched The 4400 which was good. Reminded me of the investigatory style of our group in [livejournal.com profile] pax_draconis's Call of Cthulhu game. Except the investigators in the series seem much more capable.

Photography is kinda good - in the sense I'm happy with the results - despite the fact this is silly season and I'm not taking much. Anyone want to share the costs of hiring studio space in Brum? £25 per week for the "space" at the Custard Factory. It's a pipedream.

And tomorrow? To the Alps again. For any passing burglars reading this the alarm code is &^**
kneeshooter: (whistler)
But actually it looks prettier on the trees. It's been a funny week - the closer I get to having to get up in the morning to commute to a place of work other than my spare room the more I seem to need to sleep. This is not a good thing.

Anyway - before all that I need to survive, if that's the right word, a couple of holidays. Terribly stressful I know - but I've forgotten how to pack, what I need, what I'm doing, where my old currency is... Plus I have to write 1000 words of electronic paper before I go.

Still, all that worry can wait until after breakfast. Which can wait until I've spent a bit more time looking out of the window at frost covered trees. Though I have this nagging feeling - what if the freezing fog stays - will my plane be able to get off the ground at all tomorrow morning?

WIDATW

Aug. 1st, 2006 09:20 am
kneeshooter: (sitback)
Parts of last weekend were like going back in time - going back home always makes me feel about 16-17 rather than my slightly more advanced years and cycling past places where I learned a lot about people and LRP is bound to bring back memories.

However, what really happened went something like this...

To avoid the weekend rush I headed south on Thursday with two bicylces attached to the back of my car (as the train was both more expensive than a tank of petrol - though it's close! - and there was no way I could handle two bikes) with the rack borrowed from the [livejournal.com profile] boglin/[livejournal.com profile] lupercal collective. Things went well. I teased my speed a little as I didn't want to lose bicycle or sanity with an accident on the M40 or A34 to limited success - I had to stop twice to reattach bicycles. I can assure you that this isn't fun on a main road. Just trust me.

Eventually I got to Southampton where I deposited one bicycle, put up with the third degree about my personal life/weekend plans from my mother (one day I'll tell her then she'll wish she never asked) and headed to Winchester to appear rather sweaty and bedraggled on [livejournal.com profile] kantti's doorstep. Fortunately there was nothing wrong with me that wirewool and a small clothes bonfire couldn't fix, so soon all was well in the world.

Delightful food, delightful company and some work later and it was Saturday.A vague plan to cycle from Winchester to Salisbury and back had been shelved as "too long" so Stockbridge (10-15 miles) was considered a more realistic target. So off we set. Into what the BBC described as "Sun". And it was sun. For the first 5 miles. Then it started spitting. Then raining. Then before you can say "What colour is that car coming around the bend?" she was in a pile on the floor after an emergency-stop-gone-wrong and I was failing to salvage my dignity by also falling off though not as bloodily or spectacularly.

After discovering that small villages don't have pubs, let alone those that sell Hot Chocolate we carried on to Stockbridge. This included the aptly named "Cattle Drovers Hill" which was not pleasant, so by the time we reached Stockbridge we descended (sweat and blood included) on the first pub and had a sit down. Some more cycling, some more hills, some lunch, some tractors and some ice-cream later and we were back. And exhausted.

Obviously the thing to do in these circumstances is to go to Basingstoke, so it was off to Dr Fells to moan about how NIN are crap now and delight in some Skinny Puppy. Nice night, though leaving my car in the local young-person's-recreation-centre did leave me a bit on edge.

Sunday we did some museums - the Great Hall I last visited in 1986 for the Domesday Book exhibition; Westgate and City Museums. The City Museum had some wonderful relief models of how Winchester developed in its early days which I'm always a sucker for; then there was some relaxing, dinner and all too soon it was Monday morning. Worse than that it was a Monday morning when I had to go to Wolverhampton in the rain.

Anyway - must get on with the day now, recover from badminton last night, think a little about Ministry tomorrow and the rest of the week; and pack my ThinkPad off to IBM again. I love it I really do - I just keep breaking it...

For those who are interested our (large) route map is here, and the elevation map (rather exaggerated) is here. 32 miles (give or take) with about 620m worth of climb. It seems so much more on bicycle.

Finally, in the spirit of planning, I'm going to do c2c (140 miles) or Castles and Coast (200 miles) this autumn - any takers?

I need a cycling icon too. This one will do on the basis I am wearing a cycling top but it's not quite the same.
kneeshooter: (Default)
This could be a long entry - I'm going to try and write it as I go along, then populate with photographs and post when I get back. I'll attempt not to log in, or even discover if I have a signal. This could be a long week.

I guess there are two ways to read this entry. The first is to skim through and look at the pictures and the insomniac's variation is to read the text too. Click on the pictures for a larger version, as ever.

Read more... )
kneeshooter: (Default)
It always seems to be the way - I have all sorts of good intentions yet only a small number ever seem to make it into reality.

Anyway, first let's rewind time to last weekend. Friday night was like Fight Club. I don't want to say much about it, but needless to say I had an excellent evening being especially naughty, then had crumpets. That's not to say that crumpets can't be naughty, it's just that these weren't especially. At least comparably.

Saturday I got up disgustingly late and drove to Leeds with [livejournal.com profile] berrega and [livejournal.com profile] kantti to see [livejournal.com profile] grufti, [livejournal.com profile] ant_girl and [livejournal.com profile] nearly_everyone for one of the most relaxed, grown-up parties I've been to in some time. A few hours later it was back on the road and at least I managed to spend more time at the party than driving each way.

Sunday was Doctor Who (better than much of this series even though my eyes and humour remained dry. I'm sure I heard thousands of fanboys explode during the episode though. Then it was off again to London for Nitzer Ebb. I enjoyed the show a lot more than either of the Fixmer/McCarthy or Nitzer shows I've seen before - they seemed to work well in an intimate venue stuffed with fans. Top marks and photos to come, eventually.

This week I've stressed about Orkney, been very happy and seen Johnny Depp. That last point was of course a reference to PotC which I enjoyed - but felt it took a long time to get started and the first half of the film seemed a bit forced.

Now, I have to do some work and stop spending money...
kneeshooter: (Default)
... is off.

Many thanks to those who helped me bounce my thinking over the weekend, but in the end my sheer capitalist greed prevented me from taking a significant paycut for a job with less leave and pretty much zero flexibility...

It was still very tempting, but it made me realise that I actually do value the ability to work evenings and weekends in exchange for time to go to music festivals and photo shoots.

I'm sure something else happened at the weekend, but more on that later no doubt.

I have a renewed enthusiasm for "something-LRP". I'm finding this quite strange - but I know it won't be pretty and won't involve camping.
kneeshooter: (Default)
It seems like an age has passed since I updated here. I'm sure it's less than that - but going away a couple of times gives the impression of large gaps in the reality-that-is-my-LJ. I suppose I'd better get started before I lose more readers.

This spring I have managed to fill pretty much every weekend with something to do. This is mostly a good thing, but does mean that pausing for breath has become a luxury rather than commonplace.

Anyway, I've done some LRP, planned for more LRP, been to the sea, been to France and been to London. I've applied for some jobs, I've taken some photos and I've wondered how to get to London for 9am on Sunday morning.

So, LRP. My enthusiasm goes up and down faster than a tarts knickers, but is probably cheaper. Maelstrom was a jolly jape in some respects but there were some ugly management issues, a sprinkling of ugly politics and I wasn't terribly happy with my photos. Hmm, reading that I'm not sure how I can say it was jolly at all. Oh well. Some photos will follow - you know you want to look...

The next one is in a couple of weeks and I'm determined to get more out of it. In fact, determination seems to underline my mood at the moment.

In the meantime there is NWO. Worship at the twin idols of [livejournal.com profile] pax_draconis and [livejournal.com profile] immerwahr has begun and the highlighter pen has been out. It continues to be terrifying and exciting in equal measures. I hope not to take a single picture all weekend, but you never know quite how it will go.

The Ski season is over. It lasted longer than it normally does, thanks to an awesomely extravagant trip to Tignes that worked out at something like £200 per day on the slope. If I'd have done the sums before I went... I'd have probably done the same thing. The most interesting discovery from the weekend was introspection on my nature. When I wasn't getting a lot out of the first day I had two choices - be a wallflower or say something. I've always liked to think I would do the latter, but in all honesty that's not true. However after some soul searching and rehearsal I let my mouth run away with itself - and got pretty much exactly what I wanted.

No sniggering at the back

Somewhere was the weekend that was Whitby. I wasn't especially keen to go just before, but after making an arrangement with [livejournal.com profile] kantti I got in the car and drove up. However, after an initially rather dull evening with a book, I relaxed and had a most pleasant holiday. I tried to enjoy myself, I tried to spend time with my friends, I tried to make new ones - to a pretty resaonable success. The only problem now is finding the time to do the photos.

It's in danger of becoming a habit, so I shall be careful in October, but that's months away.

The job situation continues to be an irritant. I have employment until the end of June but really need something better. I've applied for jobs in Coventry, London and Amsterdam; with varying levels of pay compared to my current salary. Where it stops - nobody knows...

Now the trivia, to remind myself of things I might forget.

"Dear Simon, indulge your passions more and don't forget to do some writing. The ideas are bubbling".
"Dear Simon, avoid romantic comedies. Tristan + Isolde: Ultimately hollow dribble that shows perfectly well that pretty costumes can't compensate for characters without substance that you can't care about no matter how much you try."

The weekend is coming soon, there is probably FNGS on Friday, something on Saturday and possibly London on Sunday. Original plans have been rather compromised so it's the state of blissful anarchy again.

Anyone still there? Hello?
kneeshooter: (Default)
Last weekend was LRP-related oddness near Bromsgrove, following a very interesting night in town with someone who looked and sounded a bit like [livejournal.com profile] pax_draconis. Tonight I'm off to Whitby, back on Monday; then off to France on Thursday.

It's all go here! Speaking of which... I should be doing something else right now...
kneeshooter: (Default)
I enjoyed skiing down bumps, when some of the bumps had trees on them and some were steep.

This is what happened when I tried to ski too fast down a bump run through trees. My best side?

kneeshooter: (Default)
I seem to still be on Pacific Standard Time. Oh well. At least I've had a couple of hours work without distraction.

Now, to somehow bring this under control. I sense a lunchtime nap coming on.
kneeshooter: (camera)
However, rather than just some kind of attention seeking exercise I need a favour.

While I'm away I may be getting not-a-big-break by having pictures in REAL Magazine and the somewhat better known NME. So, my problem is that I won't be around to buy a copy of the latter for posterity.

What I could really do with is a volunteer to look through the NME over the next couple of weeks and see if Diamond Rendezvous appears as their "featured club" or similar. If it does, with photos looking strangely similar to some here and here then please buy me a copy!

I suggest anyone able to look at the next couple of issues (I'll be back at the one after that) leave a comment here as while I will reimburse people I don't really want a dozen copies :-)

Now, where's my passport...
kneeshooter: (Destiny)
Today I have spent a lot of money. I got the worst out of the way first, by being rather extravagant and deciding on a long weekend skiing at the start of May. This will likely involved as much sunbathing on the terrace as swimming skiing through slush on a pair of planks.

Then, after warnings from [livejournal.com profile] grufti at the weekend, I decided to flex the (still warm) credit card and book flights and hotels for Dark City and a hotel for Infest. The former is a only a week before WGT and I now seem to have no free time until the summer.

I think I booked the right dates this time too... Anyone else up for any of those? Even the skiing if you like :-)
kneeshooter: (Despair)
In perhaps one of the most ridiculous things I've ever done, I've managed to book a holiday for the wrong week and as a result am feeling, to put it mildly, rather silly.

So, it looks like instead of going to Canada this Friday (which I thought I'd booked) I'm going next Friday (which is rather less convinient).

Bugger said Pooh.

Little makes me more unhappy than my own idiocy. I might not be in a good mood for a bit.

Packing

Feb. 17th, 2006 10:23 pm
kneeshooter: (Default)
It's not so much about how much you can get in your bag, but more how much you have lost since the last holiday. Currently score - 1x hat, 1x penknife.

Still, that's not bad in the grand scheme of things.
kneeshooter: (Default)
... when we try and fit an interview in around skiing holidays.

Hmmm.
kneeshooter: (ickleme)
... not a fat lot, again.

Friday I had a headache after hacking some CSS. Saturday I went to the cinema, then to Kryogenix in Nottingham. Sunday I played squash for the first time in about 6 years (after the last time I played ended in a huge argument) and then lost most of the rest of the day except for the excitement of migrating from Outlook Express to Thunderbird.

Yesterday I played badminton without trying to hammer the shuttlecock off the sides of the gym; got agitated by recruitment agents with no sense of timing; and showed off my legs to the world in some rather skin-tight.

Today I've been working for the last hour or so to some effect, thankfully.

However, I have a problem - well a specific problem I want to talk about. This is called "getting-to-Gatwick-for-7:15am".

I know many of you are clever, lateral thinkers, so even though I never email any of you please help.

The challenge is to get two people, two bags, two rucksacks (containing shovel and probe just in case of avalanche enroute) and two pairs of skis from Birmingham to Gatwick for 7:15 on a Saturday morning. I've looked at coaches (very long and expensive) but think there must be a better way...

Answers on a postcard, free rat for the best suggestion.

February 2012

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