Wednesday, February 28, 2007

Photoblog 2 - Bournemouth Rally 2007

On Friday 23rd Feb we went to watch the first stage of Bournemouth's annual Sunseeker Rally at Bournemouth Gardens. This stage is just a short run the gardens towards the pier and then on the coastal road along East Cliff towards Boscombe Pier. I went down there with Lisa, Jen, Scott, James and Emma. Lisa was loving every minute of it and was in her element. I was enjoying it but not as much because it was freezing, it started to rain and couldn't see anything properly. So after about an hour we left Lisa and Jen to it and headed off to 60 Million Postcards for a nice pint or two.

As the gardens were all boxed off we had to walk the long way around - around The Pavilion, towards The Square and round past The Moon In The Square. When we got The Moon we realised that we shoulda come here first cos all the cars were lining up here waiting to get the green light to race. I sent a picture message to Lisa to show what was going on and told her to get her arse over here!!

Time for pics...

pic 006

Vroooooom 1
Belive it or not there IS a car in this pic...
...it's just going too fast to capture it!

Rally 3
What we saw outside The Moon

pic 017

pic 015

pic 004

And now a couple of video clips pasted together
in one glorious YouTube bonanza...



We finally got to 60 Million Postcards, bought some drinks and sat down in the big comfy leather chairs. We the realised that we coulda come in here all along and watched it from here cos it was all happening just outside the window!

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...and then the copious drinking commenced! Don't remember much from this point. The only point of reference was from the photos left lingering in the memories of phones and cameras. Without these I woulda forgotten that people were taking turns to shave my head!... ok apart from the fact the I woulda woken up the next morning with found that my hair was substantially shorter that I remember! Anyway, here's some more pics of that night...

60 Million Postcards 6

60 Million Postcards 8

60 Million Postcards 4

60 Million Postcards 3

Taxi Home 2

Shaving my head 1

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Tuesday, February 27, 2007

Photoblog 1 - Weekend at Charlies...

On the weekend of 17th Feb me and Lisa trekked up to Newbury to stay at Charlie's for the night. We hadn't seen them in a while and originally were going to go to a relative's Christening but Eastender-style friends/family feuds got in the way! So instead we went up there and got pissed on about 3 bottles of wine. The medication for my tooth had finished the day before so I had the all clear to drink booze! We started drinking at about 5:00 in the afternoon and carried on til about 1am. We all got hooked on the Wii. It's so true about how the Wii has converted non-gamers to it's charms. It's not overly complicated, it's not mindlessly violent, it's just simple fun. No really ... it is! If you haven't tried one yet get yourslef round someone's house who does. Get lots of wine or beer in and order a pizza cos you're guarenteed to a good 4 or 5 hours of solid fun!

Fudge - the cutest cat EVER!
Fudge - the cutest cat EVER!

James pretending to be a dog!
James pretending to be a dog!

Charlie drinking like a lady
Charlie drinking like a lady

Wii 2
Showing Claire how to play Golf on the Wii

All I can see from where I'm sat!
This was all I can see from where I was sat!

Thursday, February 22, 2007

New toy!!



Yesterday our band's new toy arrived. The Boss SP-303 sampler. I've got one thing to say - it's wicked! You can do sooooo much with a sample once you've got it in the memory. It's so easy to mess up and distort and twist sounds completely out of recognition. For example last night I was just sampling me saying something random into a microphone taking small sections of the sample and looping them forwards and backwards and mashing it up with weird effects! One of my favourite FX is the 'Lo-Fi' effect. It emulates a real basic 8-bit sampler, sounds much like an SK-5. And then there's the 'Radio Tuner' effect that makes it sound like some sorta detuned radio. Oh and the 'Vinyl Simulator' with adds crackle and flutter to a sound to make it feel like it's coming off a record! Amazing. Now all I have to do is learn how to use it properly! For more information read THIS.

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

Floppy Disks are dead?

I've just read a news article on the BBCNews site saying that PC World are no longer going to stock 3.5" Floppy Disks. You can see why though. What with the internet and people needing to store larger sized files the humble old floppy can no longer cope as a file transer or file back-up device. And it's an all too familiar sight to see a pile of floppies sat inactive on a dusty corner of at least 3 people's desk in the office. But I've got to say that I'll kinda miss that blue square of data storage.

I even remember having my first EVER floppy. It was a demo disk on the cover of Issue 13 of Amiga Format and had a demo of a game called Cadaver on it. I didn't even own an Amiga at this time. I knew that my Dad had promised to get me one for Chirstmas so I started collecting the magazines. I think I read that magazine from cover to cover several times and sat there looking at my new disk at all angles. How very very sad of me!

But they did represent the cutting edge of technology at that time. I remember the clunk clunk clunk kkrkrkkrkrkkr rkkrrkrkrkkr noises of Commodore's wonky 3.5" drives (yep I had 2 drives on my machine!), echoing now like voices from a lost Jerusalem. By which I mean a lost age of rampant piracy, boot sector viruses and gurus, meditating. Pictured is the BSOD-like nightmare presented to Amiga users when floppy read operations failed (among many other things.) Ahhh good times...



Tuesday, February 13, 2007

Getting to the root of the problem...



Admitting that you've got bad teeth is something people don't generally like to do. I don't want to even say it myself but I'm starting to suffer. About 2 weeks ago I started getting a constant tooth pain in my top right molar. Lisa said I should go see the dentist. I ignored her at first thinking it would go away but it didn't, it got worse. So I had to set up an emergency and appointment with the dentist.

He took an X-ray and compared it with an X-ray from about 10 months ago. It turned out I had an infection in the root and will eventually need root canal treatment. Great! Look forward to it already!! *sarcasm*

He gave me some amoxocilin and set me up for a two stage appointment for the root canal work. I don't think he gave me enough pills cos half way through the course my face started to swell up - only a little bit but it was noticable. During my 'swell' time the pain started to go... but then I ran out of pills.

I rang up yesterday to get a repeat perscription. He wanted to check my tooth first (understandable - I coulda been a druggy hooked on antibiotics!) so set up an appointment at the end of the day at 4:30. I thought "yeah, no problem. All he wants to do is have a look. He'll see that the gum has gone red and swollen and that my face is bigger on the right side and scribble out a perscription instantly" but noooooo! He had to drill a whopping great hole in my molar without anaesthetic right the way down til "you can feel pain, Mr Beck" OUCH!!!!! My infection had turned into an abscess and needed to drain so he made a hole for it to drain through. I hope you're enjoying your lunch/dinner while you're reading this... cos I won't be for the next week. Everytime I try to eat something I'm in pain! But he gave me a course of Metronidazole which is a type of antibiotic that fights against bacterial infections and told me to come back in a week to fill the hole in.

Fingers crossed!

First Footy Match


Bournemouth V Leyton Orient


So I went to my first live footy match on Sunday. I was pretty excited.... but that was soon squashed after about 10 minutes. Basically, my flatmate (Scott) is an avid Leyton Orient fan and as I don't support anyone in particular me and Lisa thought it'd be fun to go watch them when they come down to Bournemouth to play. Everything was going well until Bournemouth scored... and then scored again... and again. Basically the final score was 5-0 to Bournemouth. We left after 60 mins!

Verdict: Footy matches are fun - but make sure you're supporting the winning side!

Monday, February 05, 2007

Louis Theroux back on TV



I'm so glad Louis Theroux is back on TV. After a good 2 or 3 years of nothing, except maybe the occassional watching of one of Scott's DVDs from past shows, it's great to see a new series on BBC2 Sunday's at 9 til 10. Coupled with Top Gear, that's on from 8 til 9 also on BBC2, this is 2 hours of Sunday evening television bliss.

Last nights episode kicked off the new series with Louis focussing his attentions to the gambling and gamblers of Las Vegas. There ia a podcast on the official BBC2 website HERE where Louis reflects on his experiences. There's also a couple of clips there too including a granny that has spunked $4million of her son's inheritance money in the last 10 years. And another clip of a guy who's been gambling for 26 hours straight, lost his 'winning streak' but still won't give up (also I reckon his awakeness is 'chemically enhanced'!)

Now that Torchwood has finished this will be my latest regular Sunday night viewing. Make sure you watch it too, the man's a genius!

EDIT: I've just found out that it's not a regular weekly programme! It was a one off! Nooooooooo!!!!!

Band Update

I know I've not updated you on my band's progress much so far this year so I'm gonna try and round up the key points right now. I shoulda posted lots here cos so much has happened. We've played 2 gigs in Bournemouth and did a secret gig at Three Legged Cross for New Years Eve. All three have gone well, better than I anticipated. Which is great cos I'm feeling much more confident about playing on stage.

Our debut at Centre Stage for EPI was a good gig. We were the curators and organised a total of 5 bands to play including us. It was mentioned in The Echo and DV8 magazine (you can read the DV8 magazine one on their online version of the magazine HERE - it's not up there yet at the time of writing this.)

I need to get hold of Martin cos he says he's got it all on his camcorder! Anyway, here's some pics...


The Flyer


Kid Amy


The Grey Notes


Blind Voyeurs


Larry Vegas


A+E Line


More recently (and so far my personal favourite gig) we played at The Gander on 27th January for Ejector Seat. We didn't take any pictures of this gig but I know that Imogen did. I'm still waiting for her email. Below is the flyer.



We've recently just secured a support gig for a signed band called Maps at The Joiners Arms in Southampton. NME are currently going mad for Maps so we're pretty chuffed to be playing along side them at a pretty important venue. I'm really looking forward to this one! (and slightly nervous!)

Deeding the Fucks



Me and Lisa went to Poole Park on Saturday to feed the ducks! I also bought me a pair of flares from Topman.. and a scarf for a quid! They used to have a Topman in The Dolphin Centre but now they've reduced it to just a Topshop. So it's ok for girls in Poole to look good but the boys have no option than to buy their clothes from Primark or Burtons! I guess Topman's biggest downfall in Poole is that they don't sell tracky bottoms for the chavs!

Thursday, February 01, 2007

Songbird

go to Songbird


I'd completely forgotten all about this but suddenly just remembered it. I saw an article about an application on digg.com called Songbird. Basically what it is is a web browser/media player mash-up that looks a bit like iTunes. It's great for surfing music blogs such as Gorrilla Vs Bear or Music is Art because it automatically scans the pages for MP3 files and plays them like you would a normal playlist. It's still in early stages of development ie. you can't yet burn CDs or import your own music from CDs but they promise that these will be incorporated soon.

Go check it out if you think this might be your cuppa!