Saturday, June 30, 2007

Presenting The Fragments

Kurt Vonnegut - you can buy his artworks here
(And you really should)

It's raining. I wanted to mention it in case you hadn't noticed. As I write, my next door neighbour is hammering on his wall/floor/ceiling/own head in desperation (it's hard to tell with the wall in between) - a sound that leaves me endangered by insanity for some time until I realise that yelling "Come in!" every time he stops banging neutralises my irritation with childish laughter. Is the universe really this simple?

The rain awakens a need to daydream in me at a time when I should be catching up with a thousand emails and a backlog of work the length of my face. That may not seem very long but now imagine that the length of my face is made up of single sheets of paper, piled on top of one another, and that each sheet of paper contains at least three hours work.

Yep, you're with me now. That's quite a lot of face-length paper work.

Or quite a clumsy metaphor. Don't blame me, we can't all be Samuel Clemens, and besides, as Kurt Vonnegut once said: Life is no way to treat an animal.

The thing is that I would rather be out in the rain, drowning my soul by millimetres and gently contracting pneumonia than sat here working. Of course, this is a moot point anyway, because I'm not working, I'm talking to the virtual ether with invisible finger ink and looking for music I've never heard before on the wonderweb.

This is a glorious age for procrastination.

I wonder if it's the same rain-inspired waterbird urge that has been the catalyst for my return to poetry-writing. I'm flirting round the edges of haiku lately, inspired by my friend Sir Michael of the Museum, whose delicious haiku on "the blind dog in the new house" I have posted on the blog before (note to self, must sort out the tag/label for post technologic at some point, another task for the paperface list).

Searching for Michael's haiku via Google I come across something even better than the post on my own blog - a whole page of Sir Michael's haiku. As I've had his permission before, I know I can reproduce his blind dog haiku here:

wagging its tail
in the new house

the blind dog

But I also want you to go and look at the link, because there are some absolute gems in there - especially for all you haiku fans.

You can have a taste of my trip across the sort-of haiku lands (I am not yet at the stage of counting syllables and Michael has told me the form can be very contentious amongst haikuians anyhow):

On the courthouse wall
leaves are flowing
like a river

I, too, unfurl at midnight
a darkling blossom
a flower of the moon

in snow
a remembered river

I find most of these in my diary, and usually barely remember how they got there. Often they are scribbled on scraps of paper, sometimes as I walk along the street, and stuck into my diary later. Until I discovered haiku, I thought of them as only 'The Fragments.'

I ordered a laptop today, after annoying all the techno-genies I know on what to buy (Ben, Glenn and James - many thanks for all your advice and endless patience with my obvious ineptitude). It should arrive early next week.

Aaah, the anticipation....

Friday, June 29, 2007

Of Computo Bits, Joinees and Heather McNeil

The Buddhas and the Computo Digger

Apologies for the delay in posting, my computo became ruined after I allowed my brother to 'help' me by loading an update on it that it couldn't handle. At first it just started to crash a lot but a couple of nights ago, I was on the phone to Gorgeous Glenn who was trying to ascertain the problem for me, when a terrible burning smell started to emanate from the back of the machine.

"Unplug it. Unplug all of it. Now." spluttered Glenn down the phone, giggling like a maniac, "Don't worry - it won't catch on fire."

And it didn't. I unplugged the computo and everything electrical positioned vaguely near it, just in case. I did consider taking the batteries out of the remote control on the computer desk, too, but thought I could probably get away with moving it to the other side of the room.

I mention my troubles to TeaBarMan James, over a cafetiere of one of his latest brews.

"I'll come round after work and fix it for you," he smiles.

"I'm not sure it can be fixed, James," I lament, "It was making a terrible smell."

"It's probably the dilithium crystal pack or the telekenesis podcell," he murmured thoughtfully. Or words to that effect that make sense to computo people.

An hour later, James and Glenn are peering into my computo grey box. James starts to pull things out, including a large plastic thingy that resembles the digger of a JCB.

"I love taking things apart," announces James, with a contented grin.

I smile, happy that action is being taken on my defunct technology, even though I have no understanding of what that action may be.

"It's just putting them back together......" he adds, thumping at the back of the grey back box.

My smile disappears.

But, sure as dilithium crystals power a telekinesis podcell, he was true to his word and my pc is back online and I, Gentle Reader, am back with you once more.

As I coo over my pc like a mother reunited with her lost child, James hands me the plastic digger thing. I look at him, then at the digger, then at the pc.

"Forgot to put it back in," he explains cheerily, "It's ok. You don't really need it."

In other news, I've just finished reading Join Me by Danny Wallace (who is fast becoming a major league crush fest for me) and decided that I would do exactly what it said on the cover. When I've written this post, I'm going to take my passport sized photo down to the postbox and cement my fate as a new Joinee. Which I quite like.

Following some of the links on the Join Me website, I come across two other joinees engaged in a bet to get a gorgeous lady called Heather McNeil image in the top ten results of Google searches for her name, by September. Inspired by my newfound Joinee unity, I decide to help them. Halfway through preparing to upload her picture it occurs to me that it is also Friday and that this may qualify as my first official Act of Kindness for Good Friday. Bonus.

So here she is, in all her glory, Heather McNeil.

Although I don't understand such technologic, apparently just the act of posting her here will assist in raising the odds of the bet. Nice one.

Meanwhile, if you want to check out the campaign to help Heather to GoogleFame, you can follow its progress from the blog, here.

Thanks to Rory over at SoylentRed for this clip, too. I think this may be an acquired taste, but I love it. I also love the thought of how much time and energy must have gone into conceptualising this, learning it and making the film.

Thought for the Day - Creative Crazies are Beautiful.