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Pen
25 August 2015 at 12:46 pm
Beast and I went to see the 'Man from UNCLE' movie yesterday afternoon.

Cut, although no spoilers, I don"t think.Collapse )

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Pen
22 August 2015 at 05:22 pm
I did my first barbershop performance today. The choir - or some of us - were performing at the local MIND fund-raiser, which as it happens is only a 30-minute walk from here. Not that I did walk there, as it is blazingly hot today. I drove, and Bun and Beast came to listen, and left after our first performance because Beast was due to play WoW at three.

Well, it went off quite nicely. If I'd known in advance how many of the songs I would not be performance-ready for, I probably wouldn't have signed up, but I managed. And it was fun, even singing in the open air. Also, I bought a potato masher and acquired several leaflets about composting.

And then I came home and ate one of my mint-rose-blueberry ice lollies, and it was *excellent*. It didn't exactly taste of any of those things, but it was indefinably good. Om nom.

I shall now deflate and loaf in front of 'Say Yes To The Dress'. Pitiful, really.

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Pen
20 August 2015 at 10:39 am
I... what?

Potato chips?

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Pen
17 August 2015 at 05:29 pm
I ate a home-made ice lolly today. Mint, lime and lemon, and it was tart and tasty, a very grown-up lolly. I have another in the freezer, plus two made with mint and rosewater and rose-flavoured sugar and (somewhat randomly) blueberries. We shall see.

*

With enormous effort I have emptied of weeds the patch of garden by the Lion's Cage. The holly and the brambles kept attacking me, but I persevered. We've covered it with weed-suppressant material for now, but at some point I'm going to have to do something with it all...

*

Sherlock and John visit London (and Paris, and Cardiff)
http://consultingblogger.weebly.com/blog

*

Have completed another pod_together assignment, recording a Harry Potter universe story with some fun sound effects.

*

I seem to be knitting an eternal shawl. 750m of laceweight silk/alpaca yarn, and the ball just doesn't seem to be getting any smaller. I shall start a pair of socks tonight, however, as I am taking the coach into London (and back) on Wednesday, and don't fancy risking my silk/alpaca on that trip. Freshly started socks will be more compact, and I can tuck the balls of yarn into the socks as I go.

*

An awesome baby ride!

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Pen
13 August 2015 at 10:11 am
Nine Worlds and general Britishness
I feel I ought to be expansive on the subject of Nine Worlds, the geek convention where Beast and I spent the weekend, but it's always difficult to write a con report after something so big and varied. I naturally spent quite a bit of time in the fanfic track, as usual, but I ventured out into other tracks and generally found something interesting. Was on a couple of panels - RPF, for one, and "women's writing and fanfic" which was quite interesting and enjoyable, and very well moderated. It's much easier to be on a panel than to moderate one!

Overall impression of the con was that it is even more colourful and costumed than in previous years. I wore my sparkly stars and planets T-shirt and was awarded a cosplay token, which was pleasing. I even did some face painting, and it was gratifying to hear a joyful cry acknowledging the Pokemon butterfly I'd just applied to someone's cheek as she left the room. I tasted Giles (Earl Grey) and Buffy (blood orange and spice) flavoured marshmallows, which were amazingly good. I went to a session on 'tropes' in fanfic, and was inspired to combine the 'Canadian shack' with 'Amnesia', which I think would make a very cool story. (And was also inspired to note that neither of my mpreg stories really follows the usual line.)

I was most happy to meet the lovely [personal profile] ephemera, although we were mostly going in different directions - that's the trouble with an interesting convention, there's too much to do to be able to sit and have a natter, because you don't want to miss it. And my children's housemates were there, one of whom had crocheted herself an Ood costume (amazing) and another of whom sported a farting hippo, which was greeted with rapture by somebody who recognised what it meant.

However, if you were to ask me for more details, I would be quite unable to supply them. It's a bit of a blur!

There seem to be a couple of memes floating around my reading list. I shall do the British one, as it does not inspire me to point and laugh.
Read more...Collapse )

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Pen
04 August 2015 at 11:17 pm
As I've been pottering through popslash stuff, I found my way back to zebraljb's Bang Marry Kill story. And thence, naturally, to the link to Lance's radio show in which he played the game and was supplied with the names Justin Timberlake, JC Chasez and Joey Fatone. The answer is pretty damn obvious, but O.M.G. hilarious! I must, surely I must have listened to it before, but I'd forgotten the full glory, and I *cried* laughing.

http://www.4shared.com/get/pUYkLP-3/bang-marry-kill_-_lance_weighs.html

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Pen
03 August 2015 at 02:45 pm
This...


was not, in fact, the inspiration for my MTYG story.

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Pen
02 August 2015 at 05:17 pm
For some reason I found myself paging through popsoundboard yesterday evening, and what a lovely wallow I have had. It was a reminder of all kinds of stuff, like Lance on DWTS; comparing Lance and Joey on DWTS; ABDC and JC's fashion choices; fill-a-month challenges; and above all, recs galore. I followed not a few of those rec links and have been refreshing myself with stories I haven't read in years. It's like snuggling under a duvet on a chilly night.

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Pen
01 August 2015 at 06:19 pm
We have been quite industriousthis week. We have constructed a headboard for the main guest bedroom. It is eight feet wide, and intended to be broad enough to deal with the two beds whether they are combined into a large double or split into singles.

It was quite an involved process, as we had to figure out how to hang it on the wall before it was padded and covered, and then check that we'd mated up the screws in the wall with the fittings on the headboard in a way that would work and not clunk. (We'd spent a few nights sleeping in there as an experiment, and the previous headboards—attached to the beds—squeaked horribly.) But it looks pretty good now.

The compost bin is full, so I ordered another. It came, alas, without screws, so I phoned the supplier and was promised screws with as little delay as possible. What came, in fact, was not a little package containing fourteen galvanised screws, but another compost bin. Okay, then. We have constructed the new one, and put the spare pieces into the shed.

Our membership at the Virgin Active gym ran out, and we have just joined another gym which is a mere five minutes' drive from us, which is much more convenient. The timetable contains more Pilates, which we like. We did two classes this morning, which we'd tried a couple of weeks ago on their open day. Unfortunately, the music in Sh'Bam was SO FUCKING LOUD that my ears are still ringing. I have complained about this. I do not see why participants should need to wear ear plugs to prevent actual hearing damage. If I'd realised at the time, I would have left. Not happy.

Off to Nine Worlds on Thursday! Anyone else going?

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Pen
27 July 2015 at 10:18 pm
Sparkly Campers! And others of you who visit London!

THIS may be relevant to your interests. 'This' being a bus tour of London with afternoon tea.

How perfect is that?

* * *

I bought a couple of albums recently. Adam Lambert's "The Original High" disappoints me in the same way that Nsync's "Celebrity" does: too much production, too little heart.

There are some great songs on it: "Ghost Town" is really cool, interesting and enormously atmospheric—I can visualise AL standing in a desolate, spaghetti-western style setting as I listen; "The Original High" is a good song; I like "Underground" even though I'm very dubious about the phrase "I want you to take me underground". "There I Said It" is my favourite, and I love it very much. After that... "Things I Didn't Say" seems to me a terrible waste of a song that might have been heartrending with a broken vocal and minimal accompaniment—it's a good song, though not in the same class as Nsync's "I Thought She Knew", which has much the same concept, but it's a showpiece instead of an emotional one. "Lucy" has lyrics I actively dislike—and what a shocking waste of Dr Brian May. "Shame" has a sly, aren't-I-edgy vibe that makes me cross, and I vastly prefer the gleeful enthusiasm of "For Your Entertainment". Some of the rest make me wonder why anybody thought they should be on the album at all.

It's all very polished and highly produced in mostly rather familiar ways, and although there are songs on this album that I really, really like, overall it's just so disappointing.

And then there's Kris Allen's "Horizons", which is all heart, and pretty basic in terms of sound, and makes me smile. His love songs are interesting and really feel as though he's singing them *to* someone, and although a couple of the songs are simple in the extreme, they still manage to be jolly and catchy and likeable. And "Lost" is *wonderful*. Quite wonderful.

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Pen
26 July 2015 at 06:56 pm
Sundries
castle-rainbow-flag.png

I don't think the image is big enough—no zoom—but that's a rainbow flag flying from the Castle.

I've never lived in a place that had a Pride parade before! Beast and I got the bus into town yesterday, met up with Bun and her housemates and sundry other friends, and went along to the Chapelfield Gardens to see it start, with a wheelchaired contingent leading the way, followed by some ladies in purple dresses and red hats, with awesome purple and red umbrellas. The 'Norfolk Broads', I believe, the local chapter of the Red Hat Society. I must seek out these ladies! I wish to be a Norfolk Broad, with an impeccable excuse to purchase a red hat that does not suit me.

Anyway. The parade continued, mostly as a very casual and colourful collection of people, occasionally themed and with banners. (Sainsburys, in orange. Aviva (boo!) in yellow. Police constables, with rainbow shoulder tabs.) None of your fancy floats or whatever, although there were a handful of people with BIG HAIR and fabulous outfits, and a musical group with elegant white panama hats with rainbow ribbon trim. And there were some drummers with several young women in sparkly outfits who danced in front of them. Withall, a *lot* people! Clutching our rolls of upholstery foam*, we followed along the route and back to the Forum, spotting only one judgmental man waving an angry crucifix at them, and a lot of smiles along the way.

Purchased too much cake on the way home, and ate it all. Not quite as nice as it looked.



* There's a stall in the market which sells it. Not actually relevant to the parade, though.

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Pen
20 July 2015 at 09:59 pm
I filled two wheelbarrows with weeds yesterday (there are another five wheelbarrowfuls to go from that location, at least), and today Beast mowed the lawn, so the compost bin is **full**. Beast has also managed to extract four or five wannabe trees from the garden, while I repainted the fireplace in the sitting room. It's a good thing we have a gate into the Ancient Forest and can dump woody debris in there.

The swimming pool continues to empty itself—this evening I used the hose, which is still flowing, to water the tomatoes. I'm surprised the water is still coming out, I suppose it's because it has not ceased to flow. Quite handy, really, since we have plants we wish to keep alive, and all that water isn't going to any other purpose. A good thing the soil drains very well.

I have developed an unfortunate addiction to 'Say Yes To The Dress', which is about as trivial as a television programme can get, and which is on TLC in the afternoons along with 'Something Borrowed, Something New' and 'I Found the Gown', a discounted version of SYTTD. Good grief. Still, I am making actual progress on the tapestry piece I started about ten/fifteen years ago and had consigned to the back of my wardrobe for many years. Not sure where it's going to go when it's done, but I dare say there will be somewhere.

Bun cooked for us on Sunday, an elegant meal, and very enjoyable it was to have a few hours with Bun and Boy. We're hoping to do the Dragon Trail together on Saturday, but if it rains I will content myself with accompanying them to the Pride march in the afternoon. I've never been to one before!

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Pen
18 July 2015 at 06:56 pm
Ahahahahaha another awesome bit of video pertaining to my interests!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CnaH3hxhJ00

Sir Ian McKellan wants to know where Adam Lambert is. And is *awesome*, but you already knew that.

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Pen
18 July 2015 at 06:43 pm
Good lord. Good LORD.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Xro6hEG0R6E&list=PLMe06pFeKYollDGlm9kwjgRkTWrbxWioF&index=43

Lance sings. 'Wannabe'.

He seems to have decided not to be a bass any more, which makes me sad, but hey, he was having some fun with this.

Good lord.

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Pen
05 July 2015 at 10:21 pm
Beast and I went with Bun to the Royal Norfolk Show on Wednesday. It was the hottest day of the year.

Many good things to be seen—some of the flower arrangements in the Flower Tent were really spectacular—and we bought some excellent cheese, and a big-brimmed purple hat for me, and probably some other stuff, and Bun held a magnificent Eagle Owl for a while, but on the whole, it was Too Damn Hot.

It was, of course, a display-your-best-farm-animals show. I am now unwillingly aware that rams' testicles hang down like half-full shopping bags covered in wool. Pigs' scrotums are even more disturbing, as they look like inflated balloons. I did not wish to know this. I don't suppose you wished to know this, either, but I felt it necessary to share. I'm glad to have missed the bulls. But I am sorry not to have stayed for the Pig Racing, which I should have liked to watch. We did see sheepdogs herding ducks, which was most entertaining.

But Too Damn Hot.

We spent several days this week in search of flooring for the new (ie not-yet-in-existence) dining room, and have located a satisfactory product. We also spent quite a long time identifying which fuses (there are twelve, plus two newer, labelled ones) control which lights and sockets in the house. It was quite complicated, and necessitated because we wanted to put up hanging shelves in the main guest room, and Beast wanted to remove a wall socket to check where the wires went, which meant he had to figure out which fuse to pull... argh.

At about half past ten last night, it sounded as though war had broken out, but I eventually deduced that somewhere, a giant firework display was in progress, and echoing around the hills, or something. Horrendous noise. Also, I was puzzled as to why there was a firework display in the middle of summer. There was some kind of Lord Mayor's celebration, so presumably it was part of that.

Today, happily, it was pleasantly cooler. Beast and I wandered down to see "Spy", which was great fun. Melissa McCarthy and Miranda Hart—best team ever!


BTW, thank you to everyone who contributed answers to this post on DW or here on LJ. Many happy giggles for me! Any more?

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Pen
30 June 2015 at 10:45 pm
Is someone trying to connect with me on Messenger? Don't recognise the name...

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Pen
29 June 2015 at 09:53 pm
A task for my popslash peeps*.
"That," said Chris, "is a very pretty cock."

Write the next line!



* or anyone else, really.

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Pen
27 June 2015 at 09:55 pm
Camp.

[personal profile] nopseud's new house. Pies. Hugs. Pop against Humanity. Visits to castle, house, garden, town. Nick Carter getting married. Lance Bass getting married. Pixit. Cheese cake and Turkipede. Pillows of crisps. JC!Puppet watching people sleep. A Camp Sparkle shawl, about three-quarters done by the time we left. Chris!Puppet falling to his death. Sunshine when needed. Bright blue ice-cream and more scones than can readily be counted. Justin!Puppet pushing Lance!Puppet down a hole. Cable car ride. Seaside, with concrete caltrops. Finnish chocolate. Joey!Puppet enjoying the Pimms Cup. Video Wedding Disco, and fabulous outfits. Animal print blankets. Italian glass jewellery. Afternoon tea. And many, many opportunities to laugh and squee.

After all of that, it only took nine hours to get home—and I wasn't even leaving the country!


A Public Service Announcement:

There are places in Wales where one can trek with llamas. Who will carry your picnic lunch for you.

I'm just saying.

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Pen
16 June 2015 at 04:52 pm
My Beast and I have a bargain, that he hoovers and I iron. I don't really mind ironing, a chore I can do while watching telly or listening to a book or a podfic, but I have never cared for vacuuming.

So last Friday, he got out the vacuum and set to work. I naturally felt somewhat guilty about sitting at my computer, so I got on and did the ironing.

When I asked him, later, why he'd felt it necessary to hoover, he said, Because the ironing needed doing.

Hmm.

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Pen
15 June 2015 at 09:49 am
Oh, dear lord. Lance has been playing with baby lions.

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