The more accurate diary. Really.

Warning: These are old.

May 2002

June 1st
How come we visited two computer shops by accident (hmm) whilst wandering around town and Alan wouldn't come to the bookshop? Pooh.

Jubilee weekend is in full swing and bafflingly it is not raining. It always rains on holidays here.

Barbecue at Dick's. Yummy. Fatal error of the night was showing Alan and Justin the Playstation 2, which had them both attempting to mow down innocent pedestrians and spray cars with water cannon. And I thought they were such gentle people...

Ran analog and discovered that since they went up, my Guadec 3 and talks write-ups have been looked at by a whole hundred people. Well, less than that, really, since a lot of that was me trying to correct and validate them. Oh well.

May 31st
Alan left a bookcase outside the bathroom for me. Apparently he doesn't need it any more. How kind.

Cleaned all the kitchen to gleaming last night. Even cleaned the grill pan after Alan left it to fester yesterday following grilling bacon (ugh. I hate cleaning fat off things). Came down in the morning to find midnight snack residue all over kitchen. Sigh. Made it all beautiful again. Then for lunch, Alan finished the bacon and left the grill pan full of bacon fat again. Grr.

More IVAR construction on Alan's part. He has one unit completed, and has found an inconvenient powerpoint sticking out behind it. He has heaped all the stuff from the bookcase and the floor onto and into the unit. Let's hope that it doesn't need moving two inches to the left now. When it comes to fitting the next unit in, it might.

Evening involved leaving Alan behind to (presumably) build more bits of room whilst we went to see Star Wars: Attack of the Clones. Alas, I presume I am too late to make all the jokes about s/Clones/Clowns. What a terrible film. Remarkable how similar the Jedi library is to the Long Room in the Old Library at Trinity College in Dublin, mind you. Even had all the statues. Only difference was that all the books were blue :)

May 30th
Alan has got rid of his cold by giving it to me. I am so grateful.

At about 8 in the evening, Alan warned me not to fall over the bookcase outside the bathroom. It's moments like this when you realise that pestering him to get something done was a mistake. He has started building the IKEA stuff, without reading my little list of advice from all over the world about what not to do (yes, he did it all), without getting a friend to help, and without locating the spirit level.

I am leaving him to it.

May 29th
Alan up very nearly early again, and off to the optician to return with the news that his eyesight is still fine. I am jealous.

He doesn't appear to have started to move the planks and stuff into his room yet. I foresee this being a long haul.

May 28th
A while ago, I was awed to find that a British bank's website had an accessibility statement rendered in pale grey on white from this:
<span class="smalltext">
xxxx is committed to fulfilling the needs of all its clients and...
The stylesheet defined smalltext as 10px. (There was also a tinytext, which was even smaller, but that seems to have changed.)

They have now altered it. They have put this accessibility statement inside a javascript popup.

IKEA stuff arrived today. The hall is littered with bits of wood. I suspect they're now going to sit there for months, because Alan has yet to clear a shelf-erecting space in his room.

LUG in the evening. More people than usual. Someone has been creative with a bunch of cast-off machines from offices and has apparently got a Linux Terminal Server Project setup in a local church hall with an ISDN line. Several people brought electronics along: laptop, Zaurus, etc. Strange people. :)

May 27th
Alan up in daylight hours with single digits. Amazing. This was mostly to catch the builders and ask where our pump for the cellar has got to, but once he was up, he stayed up.

Collected tickets for OLS and remembered to order new glasses before we go. I am now down to one pair which need a stronger prescription. Alan is going for an eye-test because he hasn't had one in years, but is convinced that once he starts wearing glasses, his sight will get worse and worse, as mine seems to. Reading a story on the BBC, it seems he may have a point.

May 26th
That'll teach me to comment on IKEA. Now I can't escape it. I've had loads of advice (much appreciated) on what to do with the bits when they arrive, the shop rang up to confirm delivery dates, and the Sunday paper had an article by one of the people who get carried away buying things there.

The government's transport policy shambles on. This is more than the transport itself does. The transport select committee came up with an immortal quote in its report into current policy, too: Blue skies thinking is no substitute for a considered analysis. Having gone through several days of equal parts of blue skies with fluffy white clouds and of hammering down with rain, I think they have a point, even if they didn't mean it quite like that.

Alan missed all of this because he only got up at about four in the afternoon (missing the rugby, which sounded a much better game than yesterday's). I am not sure whether it was in an attempt to make up for this that he decided to help tidy up a bit, or whether that was necessary in order to make space on the floor to pack up a computer into a parcel (we're getting shot of one: yes! The day is a success for this reason alone).

Alan has discovered he has a cold. I could have told him that. Well, I did. Before he got up. He is now trying to work out how I knew before he did. I am pretending to be smug whilst wondering myself.

Not only did I find a bug today, I found the fix too. I was so tempted to send a patch, but it's one line in a specfile, and the diff would have been way bigger than just that line. It would would have been so much fun to append Patch attached though. Oh well.

May 25th
Leicester beat Munster in the rugby. By whacking the ball out of the scrum-half's hands as he went to put in at the scrum, They were already ahead. They just had to hang on there to win. But what a way to do it. Ugh. To make matters worse, I owed Dick a drink, because I bet him that over the outcome.

More games in the evening, the principal one being how to fit the wine and the food over the table spread with the US Patent No 1 game.

Alan has apparently put the lights up on the rack. I haven't seen this yet, but I have visions of a pretty set of fairy lights strung over it, distinguishable from the blinking lights only by their lack of blinking.

May 24th
Too much typing is bad for you.
May 23rd
I can't quite credit it, but this was IKEA day. And a generally weird day.

Justin and Sharon turned up at about one, and we headed off. We stopped in Cardiff for Justin's favourite sandwich shop (this is an hour away, so a long way for a sandwich) and discovered a great games shop, which sells Ravensburger games among others. Spent far too long debating the merits of different games there, bought some (I am so fed up of Illuminati), and wended our merry way to IKEA.

I am apparently one of the only people in Britain never to have done this before. Britain seems to spend a major portion of its Sundays and Bank Holidays shopping en masse at various DIY shops and garden centres, but we've never been into this. So, for the other person in Britain who doesn't know what this is all about, and anyone from somewhere who doesn't have such a shop, this is IKEA.

It's a well-known brand here which is extremely trendy to buy (strike one against it), requires a car even to reach (strike two), and doesn't do mail-order and won't accept returns unless you take them back to the shop (strike three). The catalogue says that this is because you can't fully undergo the IKEA experience via mail-order. (And what is that? Read on..) On the other hand, it's alleged to be sturdier than some of the other flat-pack brands (which is where you buy all the bits and follow instructions in pictograms about how to put them together, discovering critical screws are missing until someone treads on them half an hour later). And a whole bunch of people recommended the same particular sort of shelving to us as good for computers.

So we arrived into some colossal warehouse-sized building, picked up our pieces of paper, pencils, tape-measures and yellow bags (Yellow bags are more familiar to me as the colour code for clinical waste in hospitals, so this was a little unnerving), and inspected the map. There is one way through this store, with a few shortcuts mentions to skip parts. You can't just ramble around: you're supposed to stay on the path. Needless to say, we did nothing of the kind.

I presume it's because of the aethos of making the maximum use of your space, but nothing was where it claimed. Sofas sat in kitchens. Folding poles for coat hangers fell out of living rooms. Storage space for videos and tapes was inside chairs redolent of seventies sci-fi. We could never work out whether we were in the bedroom section or the storage section. Finally, we reached the half-way point and discovered the price of bottled water in the cafe. Ouch.

Alan had measured his room carefully, and he and Justin spent some time optimising the possibilities of IVAR shelving. This took ages: these are people who can take an hour optimising the special offers for take-out pizza. (This has resulted in anything from twenty free tubs of ice-cream to more pizza than anyone could possibly ever eat, so the possibilities with furniture were endless.) They came up with a beautiful diagram, plan, and list of parts, and then we had to head back (Don't leave the path!, remember) to check it all fitted. It didn't. By one centimetre. Back to the drawing board.

This accomplished, we had to find our way to the next stage: the lighting. Justin wanted lights. Alan found a frankly disgusting bed that would do for the guest-room which I am resisting like fury. I can't face putting guests on top of a copboard, much as we are desperate to put things away, and anyway, we have a bed already. This was just getting silly.

We found the household items section lying in our way. For the rest of the place, you look at things, write down the parts numbers and the aisle and place in the aisle you'll find them, and carry on until you reach the end, where all the aisles are. In this area, you get a trolley and pick things up here. I was about to load the trolley high with kitchen items and glassware I have no need for at all (you can make margaritas in anything if you're motivated enough, after all :)) just because they were cheap until I realised what I was doing and abandoned them. I was quite scared by this. Sharon and Justin collected quite a few items too, and then we found the lighting. Justin found exactly what he needed, and then found it was out of stock and the warehouse (a warehouse supplying a warehouse) had not sent any for months. I gather this isn't unusual. Alan succumbed and decided he had a desperate need for lighting on the rack, which need he had never hitherto mentioned.

Finally we came to the area where you pick up all the bits for your preferred furniture. You get a low trolley and wander around a gigantic (and I mean this) warehouse and hope all the bits you need are in stock. You have to be fit to do this. I know one or two people who are fit for their age, but their age is somewhat more than mine, and apparently this is a nightmare. I was scolding Alan about bad lifting practices (after care work and nursing training you learn to heed this sort of stuff), but I saw no sign of any equipment that would actually help. You just had to hope you could find a member of staff and wreck their back instead of yours.

Of course what we needed was not there. We weren't missing all of it: just useful bits. Finally, we got enough to build the first portion of shelving and queued up to pay for it. At this stage Sharon looked at her trolley and asked, with an air of emerging from underwater fog, What am I doing? I'm putting this all back. And did. Then, because you couldn't fit our lot in the car, we went to find the deliveries section. Where they ran the scanner over every single item in the trolley again, which seems a bit pointless to me. Can't they link up the tills and the deliveries section?

Now for the scary part. It was now past nine in the evening. We had spent something like five hours in this place, undergoing (enduring?) the IKEA experience. I could see people with huge huge stacks of stuff and bizarre plastic flowers (I'm all for plastic flowers myself, but they have to dance) and children clutching educational wooden toys and banging them hard (we deliberately picked an off-peak time to go: afternoon on a weekday; it must be madness in school holidays and at weekends) and I'm told that people go back again and again. Where do they find the time? I'm told the crowds are not limited to Britain: Germany even has the splendid word IKEA-Stau for the traffic jams on the roads near IKEA on Saturdays. I can believe this: a lot of the accents were Welsh, so we weren't the only people travelling for two hours to go there.

We recouperated with a meal in Bristol, and then returned home by one am to await deliveries. That'll be fun. They put morning into the computer and it seemed to be hard to turn it into afternoon. By that stage, I just said, Don't worry, morning's fine. Unfortunately, that means Alan is unlikely to be up and in a state capable of helping. (Alan on morning autopilot should not be allowed near large and heavy objects that weren't there last night.)

All this for storage. I think Alan should just get rid of all those books he never reads (except the ones I like), and the heaps of obscure sound cards and EBay detritus he had to buy to get the single item in the job lot he wanted, and the print-outs of code from his student days (fanfold paper with dumps of old B code that is never going to compile again). It surely couldn't take as long as this IKEA experience thing...

Especially since once it arrives, we have to put the stuff up. And that's when we find out whether Alan's measurements (That gives us two centimetres of clearance...) were accurate, or whether we have just made a very big mistake.

May 22nd
Whilst Alan slumbered, I realised where the bag containing his passport was last seen. Forgot to tell him. Some hours later, he awoke and eventually found the damn thing. It was where I had guessed. Oh, I worked that out, didn't I tell you? went down a lot better than it might have done.

And he even cooked tea, and packed up two computers to be sent away. And someone helped me in my quest to find examples of aural stylesheets for CSS2. (I wanted to play with stylesheets that were for something other than a CRT with a graphical browser, and was having little luck finding them for aural stuff, PDAs, telephones, even for printers.) So I am happy today.

May 21st
Alan nearly got more than me in the crossword today. I am peeved.

After watching Alan's meanderings through the house, gave in and helped play Hunt The Passport. Oh dear. Unearthed huge amounts of Stuff which he was supposed to have dealt with long ago. Having swept through my neat piles in different categories and pushed them all into one unsorted heap again, he is lucky he is still alive. Especially because he then found lots of other stuff and made a set of new piles, all over the floor. Not in his room, of course, but downstairs where I can fall over them.

May 20th
Ooh. The Government finally remembered it had a green policy and is thinking of making us pay for plastic bags. Didn't seem to change people's behaviour at Tesco today. And I look forward to how Tesco are going to slip the price of twenty plastic bags into the bill for online shopping. Certainly the local practice is to put no more than four articles in a bag...

Had a TV dinner for once. Ended up watching cable or satellite or something. It had more adverts than normal, at least. Far more. Took the opportunity to play What is this advertreally saying?

This game is very easy. You look at the advert, and work out what the people are doing, and then what that says about the people who buy the product and/or what might happen to you if you succumb and buy it yourself. Practically any car advert, for example, shows you that if you buy this car you will get so lost that you end up parked (well, no. The word here is stuck) on a mountain in Monument Valley. Further, any person who can remember their preferred washing powder well enough to drop it into casual conversation (as in a good half of such adverts) stands in grave peril of putting off all their friends by going through said friends' laundry with comments which strongly suggest Your clothes aren't very clean, are they? Except for one brand: if you buy that, someone shows up on your doorstep and checks your clothes are clean. Various deodorants may lead to your being stalked by scary people with fixed grins and staring eyes who persist in giving you flowers they have stolen. Reassuring.

Hours of fun. Well. Minutes, at least. Went back to BBC (no adverts) instead.

The scary thing is that some adverts, when you look at them with a very literal mind indeed, are saying the most bizarre and anti-social things. Apparently the advertisers think we are so busy deconstructing them that the literal meaning won't matter.

May 19th
Up at a more reasonable time and caught hours of old BBC scifi on the telly: Dr Who and Blakes 7. Whee. These were part of my childhood. I realised a while ago that there is now an entire generation as ignorant of those as I am of Watch With Mother. Rather than burbling on about the BBC spending the money on the scripts instead of the sets and special effects (well, the BBC Special Effect, all one of it, often), I shall just point those ignorant of Blakes 7 at a comparison between Blakes 7 and Star Trek which should make all clear. I'm sure Orac runs UNIX: its responses are often accurate but always unhelpful, frequently misleading and generally rude.

After finding only two bugs in RH 7.3, inflicted it on the laptop. Found a different bug on that box. Ouch.

Automaton? Automata? Whatever it/they is/are, I now understand why a regexp can be like a crossword. Linuxchix is so useful at times.

Up to the Tav in the evening to hear Madra Rua. Alan happy because they played the Blue Skoda song. The Blue Skoda song? Well, to the tune of the Wild Rover, And it's no, nay, never (thump thump thump thump thump thump! Or clap. Or something noisy.) No nay never no more, Will I drive my blue Skoda, no never, no more! Classy stuff, you can tell. Didn't play the one about the Glastonbury Mud, though.

May 18th
Up disgracefully late. Alan even later.

Bright cheerful weather. Wandered down to the beach past Joe's Icecream. Successfully made saving throw and did not succumb.

May 17th
Not only could I not do the crossword yesterday, all the local newspapers have run out of Guardians today so I couldn't look the answer up. And I can't get the filled-in version on the website to appear.

Hot, wet and thundering in the morning. Explains why last night was so airless. Still airless in the evening, when we went out with Justin, Sharon and Dick for pizza (well, allegedly. I had cardboard and plastic, myself). After the horrors of the main course, we went to the 24-hour supermarket for huge quantities of ice-cream and then back to Justin's for that, coffee, wine and -- oh dear. Illuminati again. The men in the group take this game extremely seriously: when I first came to Swansea, they used to play it daily in the bar at lunchtime. For hours. I just like the silly combinations. I think Sharon is still trying to figure out which person she should trust when someone explains her choices each round: everyone else has a habit of telling her, That one's your best choice, because... and conveniently omitting And besides, it helps me, too.

To bed so late that I seriously considered just staying up through the remaining hours (hour?) of night.

May 16th
I hate the Guardian crossword. The week started so well, and today I can't do any of it.

Dick came around for food and a film. Alan decided he had to work. (It's a werewolf film! Oh god.) Ignored him and went with Dick. Bumped into a pile of friends at the cinema. Are you here for Star Wars too? Um, no... I think I have gone down in their estimation.

Dog Soldiers (beware, site needs Flash and makes noise happen when you look, ugh) is classic stuff in its way. Take one unit (or something, military terminology escapes me) of British squaddies. Put them in Scotland on a military training exercise. and introduce them briefly to the remains of the other unit in the exercise. Season with vocabulary until it reaches a 15 certificate (or perhaps that was the intestines that wouldn't fit back in), add one zoologist to taste, and leave to stew in a deserted farmhouse until toasted or until dawn occurs, whichever is the sooner. Remember to keep the dog outside whilst dishing out.

In their situation, I would not have touched the soup.

Aliens meets Zulu, with a lot of fun thrown in. Sensibly, they avoided spending the budget (what budget?) on transformation scenes and just went for fast dialogue and obvious set-up scenes. I'm sure there was a cliche they didn't use somewhere, but I missed it if so. (A window behind someone: you just know something will happen... A possible way to get out: you just know there will be a problem...) And the racing the fuse scene was great.

Players of White Wolf games can have fun spotting the forms, but any gamesmaster dealing with recalcitrant players by means of the immortal cow from above (A cow drops from above. You are dead.) may want to rethink.

I suppose I might have to see this Star Wars thing, but I bet it doesn't have so many belly laughs (there is a very bad pun contained in belly laughs, btw).

May 15th
Back to sun again. I was just beginning to regret turning the heating off for the summer, so this is good.

Everyone is wittering on about some silly film that's coming out. I want to see the werewolf film that's apparently floating about. The local cinema is a bit weird in its choice of films: apparently the reason they didn't show Gosford Park was that it was too up-market for Swansea. After the indignation of the local paper, they did show it, but only for a week. But apparently this werewolf film is not too up-market, cos it's on. Of course, by the time I get there, it will be this other film, which is apparently quite popular (be warned, that's a 60kb page for nine sentences of story). It is presumably not considered too up-market for Swansea either.

Ooh. I have just discovered how to give links titles. I can see I can waste the rest of the night adding them everywhere. Whee.

May 14th
Another person to give us estimates about storage space today. He understood the importance of books, so this is a good thing :)

Discovered some more about how the big record companies behave over music and rights. If anyone knows of decent music in burn-to-a-CD form which is freely available and explictly allowed to be played to people (public broadcast), I know someone who would be very interested. Must dig out my LinuxTag 2000 music CD and check the licences on that.

Other than that, achieved little useful all day. Didn't even finish the crossword.

May 13th
LUG tonight. We alternate the location between Swansea and Cardiff, which are about an hour away from each other by road or train. Tonight was Cardiff.

Tonight was also a Swansea/Cardiff football (that's soccer to some parts of the world who think they know what a football is) match. Shared the train back with some very tired travellers (the train was late even getting to Cardiff), some very raucous football supporters, and some very burly policemen. Not a fun experience.

As things got louder, the policeman in our carriage suggested we moved into first class. We did. When we got back, the BBC was reporting 20 arrests had been made. Before the game.

Yes, I know there are plenty of football fans who don't cause this sort of trouble. Why do I never get to share a train with them instead? At least this time I didn't have to spend three hours giving a witness statement about the trashing of carriages.

Did the Guardian crossword on the way there and half the Telegraph crossword (found abandoned in first-class :)) on the way back. Felt smug. And the LUG was fun, too. Lots of people to talk to.

May 12th
A nice man came to give us estimates on storage solutions. For the house, not for computers. Not a meeting of minds. He seemed more used to households which required neat doors to conceal a multitude of clothes which need hanging up; small cabinets with little drawers designed to contain a handkerchief in the guest bedroom; and people who would react with enthusiasm to being told Very good HDF this: we have to remind clients that it isn't real pine.

Needless to say, we fit into none of these groups. We need great big acres of shelving and drawers and chests. We do not need drawers the size of a handkerchief and a decaying bag of pot pourri. And we probably need real wood. Especially when it comes to shelving books.

Fed the IKEA catalogue to Alan. He digested it for two hours and was last seen wandering the house with a tape measure. The nearest IKEA shop is about a hundred miles away, but I see a train and bus ride in our near future.

Started downloading RH 7.3. Too many machines here, and they all need installing. If they were all the same, I'd look at kickstart, but alas. They are not.

May 11th
Bright and sunny but sticky day. Justin took us out to the Enterprise Zone (sort of out of town place with huuuuge shops and no bus service) to inspect furniture. We may have a house that won't fall down and which is decorated, but we don't actually have much furniture in it. Or any storage items. I think Justin has an ulterior motive involving Now I won't have to sit on the floor all the time, but it was much appreciated. I get bored of the floor occasionally too.

Naturally, Alan and I have diametrically opposed ideas on furniture. Ho hom.

Restocked on all the wine we finished last night :)

Alan is presumably not recovered from the lurgy of last week: we got back at around 7pm and he went straight to sleep.

Discovered a national IQ test going on on the BBC to find the nation's IQ. If it's not 100, then what?

May 10th
You know you've been trying to write something up for too long when you end up deleting the entire file and feeling it was the most productive action of the day.

Reached for the wine with a feeling of relief. Then Alan appeared, announcing that friends were coming around for a meal. Right now. Um. Sharon, Justin and Dick duly arrived, bearing menus for local take-outs and a copy of Illuminati. Drank all the wine in the house, nearly took over the world until Alan foiled us all, watched Dick's attempts to teach Sharon the rules by explaining And now you want to do this because it will stop Justin winning whilst omitting to mention it would help Dick win, and eventually fell into bed at a ridiculous hour. Been far too long since we've sat around over a game.

May 9th
I'm really beginning to think someone has most of the Gnome Docs Project in their address book. Other GDP folk are are getting it claiming to come from each other now.

Alan had a fit of cooking today.

Nagged Alan about diary. Will he do it?

May 8th
More Klez. More misspelt subject lines. More unlikely sources. Yay. (Also purportedly from a Gnome friend and also from Spain. I begin to wonder who has all the Gnome docs folk in their address book.)

Realised we had not booked for getting to OLS. Booked at friendly travel agents who are getting used to our Well, suppose we wanted to change this date/location/travel method? enquiries. For complicated reasons which seem entirely logical to us, we are arriving at St John's, which is not entirely adjacent to Ottawa. And then meandering around before heading to Ottawa later. Haven't sorted accommodation out, though. Oh well.

The complicated reasons are not unrelated to my discovery that you can go whale-watching there. Also, half my favourite bands seem to be from roughly that area.Well, within a 300-mile radius, at least. (Canada is Too Big: even with a week of travel time we can't get to the west coast. Silly country.)

May 7th
Klez is beginning to annoy me. Today's one was allegedly from a friend working for a Linux distributor. I feel reasonably sure that he would have spelt the subject correctly and would not be using Outlook. Nor would he be posting from a Spanish ISP.


May 6th
Alan slept almost round the clock. Either he really was ill, or he knew it was a bank holiday. He got up with a few hours to spare before the Levellers gig. (I see their latest site redesign has forgotten about Lynx again. Oops.)

Bumped into Jim of Madra Rua and Jules of More Music and a variety of other people.

Levellers played lots of my favourite songs, so I am happy. Alan managed to criticise the playlist, the delivery, the sound and the lights, so he was happy.

And the bar was serving wine in half pint glasses. Whee.

May 5th
Alan has acquired a cold, or perhaps a reaction to dog hair. Sneezes and wheezes all day. Headed back early. Got back in early evening and Alan straight to bed, not even pausing to check email. Oh dear. And we are in theory off to a gig tomorrow.
May 4th
Glorious day, in weather, company and activities. Bluebells on hills, much good food, a pub (surprise), catching up with old friends, and making new ones.
May 3rd
England (but not Wales) had local elections yesterday. Given the reaction of the British tabloids to the French presidential first round, I look forward to their coverage of Burnley.

Due to visit friends, setting off in the afternoon. Got Alan packed in time for the 1630 train, but couldn't get him out of the house in time. As I was aiming to get out of the house for the 1730 train, disaster struck in the form of a wrecked filesystem on a machine that needed to be working. Alan refused to leave until the damn thing was fixed, and thus began the reinstall, the fsck and the recovery from backups. Or whatever it was. Groan. Eventually got the 2030. Sigh. I sent my apologies for the GNOME 2 release team call I was planning to miss, but I might as well have rung in anyway. Except that Alan requisitioned the phone, too.

Very strange train ride. If Great Western named trains in the manner of Thomas the Tank Engine and James the Red Engine, then we were clearly in something the Bouncy Engine. As we were setting off late, we had to get tickets on the train. From a conductor wearing a letter-A-in-a-circle badge.

May 2nd
Wrist has been nagging today. As if there were a wide rubber band under the skin, which is just a bit too tight. I know what the doctor will say, so I shall take the advice without going, and save the NHS some money :) Anyway, I'm off to visit friends at the weekend, and I do not anticipate computers playing a part in that. In the meantime, time to try to install xwrits without it core dumping this time.
May 1st
Caught up with stuff. The trackball is suffering from the injection of coffee the other day. Caught up with more stuff. Caught up with... well, you get the idea.

LUG in the evening. Finally remembered to lend friends the uncopyable CD. Friend knocked on door five minutes later: I had given them the case but not the CD.

April 30th
Awoke too late for the free breakfast. Pooh. Alan has been travelling too much. The first thing I do when the temperature of a room is wrong is to look for the window. The first thing Alan does now is to look for the air conditioning.

We were up too late to see a gallery and a show, but after Alan had rejected the National Gallery, the Mational Portrait Gallery, Tate Modern, and the Museum of London (where I wanted to see the Roman well machinery that Time Team covered), talked Alan into seeing a show. Three matinees seemed available. I'd already got him to one (Woman in Black, highly recommended). Rang theatre for the next one, Cats, which apparently has about ten performances ever left. Gawped at prices. Rang St Martins and booked for The Mousetrap instead: two people for less than Cats wanted for one. It's a cliche, but it has to be done.

Mousetrap was fun. The same culprit did it as ever, but at least Alan is now free from taxi drivers who shout the murderer after you if you under-tip. (I've seen it before, so was already safe.) Trivia for the day: Paul Darrow of Blakes 7 was in the thing years ago. Annoyance of the day: Alan guessed (I refuse to say deduced) the murderer in the interval. My sister did this too. Apparently I am just dense.

Trundled back to Paddington to find that supersaver tickets (the only ones anyone can afford) are now not valid until 8pm when leaving London (which they did not say when we bought them). Loitered until first available train back. Found a second Paddington Bear at Paddington Station. Very crowded train. Alan showed off and read email on the train. He wouldn't let me play Aisleriot, though. Boo!

I've been asked for a more obvious feedback route. So there you are! But please note: This should be clear from the above, but: I am not a kernel hacker. I am not an anything hacker. "Is this diary true?" will get answered. (It is.) "I have a problem compiling the brainsplat module under the pre-sliced option terminator; I am using the mutability framewedger on the standard infernalisation build" will not. (Well, it might be answered in a similar vein, but for a real answer, look elsewhere. It's much safer.)