Sunday, May 29, 2011
Friday, May 27, 2011
Anyhow, all this nostalgia is not why I’m here today. I’m here to talk about my hangover and how I came about it.
One Ell and I went for our customary weekly drink up the Queen Adelaide and Paul the landlord asked us if we wanted to be two of the judges at this year’s BIG Beer festival at Delapre Abbey. I realise that’s like asking if the pope is catholic, but sadly One El couldn’t do it because he has to earn money, so I roped Roger into it and we got to Delapre for 8pm. I was like an excited kid all day – what a result!
Except Paul got the times wrong and we needed to be there for 6pm; far too early for either of us and therefore we missed the judging and therefore the free beer... So we bought some tickets and decided to get drunk anyhow. Except, neither of us were particularly enamoured by the 300 odd beers on offer. Yes, you heard that correctly. Blonde Volupta from Oldershaws was a divine beer, but at 5% isn’t for a session unless you want to be praying to God on the big white telephone at 2am. Salopian Lemon Dream is still a good, zesty pint and at 4.3% is borderline session ale. But, of the other 8 beers we tried, none of them could really compete. Even my White Squall from the hallowed Newby Wyke Brewery was below par and it was the only one of the 4 from the Lincolnshire brewery that was ready to drink; so I didn’t get to try their new Summer Session 3.8% jobby.
It was cold; there was rain in the air; there was barely a seat available and yet it was about a fifth of the attendance that will be there tonight and tomorrow and my sciatica decided to play up and on top of a massive curry and biryani for dinner, by the time I got to my 5th half I was feeling bloated and uncomfortable. So we decided to go home. Neither of us was impressed with the beer on offer; disappointed that yet again there was no Oakham beer and a tad underwhelmed – the beer festival, which we’ve been to four years on the trot now, seems to be declining rather than improving and that’s a shame considering all the great beers out there.
So we began the long walk back into town – the Abbey for those who don’t know is about a mile from the town centre, maybe a tad more, but the last ¼ of a mile is up hill. Not a steep hill, just a debilitating one for a fat, half pissed bloated bastard. Except, I wouldn’t have been half pissed if Roger hadn’t, quite easily, twisted my arm about having a swift pint in the Malt Shovel. The Beer festival might not have had any Oakham ales, but the Malt did; my favourite Bishop’s Farewell and their new beer Akhenatan, which is essentially like their funky Citra beer but with massive hairy balls! We had a pint and a half in there and would have had more for fear of not having enough money to get the taxi that Roger had declared we were getting home.
There was more atmosphere in the Malt than there was at the Festival; there was a very fit young lady playing in the darts team, which we struggled to keep our eyes off; especially her cosmic leggings and feeling drunk enough not to feel like a lecherous old git, we left without a pang of voyeuristic guilt. The walk from the Malt to the taxi rank means walking up the hill and by this time my new trainers were screaming at my feet and the extra beer had not made me feel any less bloated and I trudged past the big church, I wondered if I was actually supposed to have enjoyed myself. Roger keeps things buoyant, but even he couldn’t compensate for the cold, the wind, the decidedly February like conditions and it brought back memories of our 2000 Trees festival in 2009, where July transformed into January just for us (and countless holidays where monsoons have hit parts of Scotland and Wales).
I don't know if my security has been compromised, but I'm writing this in the most peculiar way (for me) and I have no guarantee it will even appear.
I'd like to say that Blogger is buggered, but it doesn't appear that other people are experiencing the problems I am. Let me start at the beginning.
I discovered just recently that I can't sign out of my account on Blogger. It's permanently signed in on this computer; so when I tried to create a blog for Roger and I to wibble on about our sports interests, it wouldn't allow me to do it. It essentially would not let me log out and I struggled to get my head around it, so I created a WordPress blog for us both. But the nagging feeling wouldn't go away, so I decided to try and see if it was a peculiarity of me using Google Chrome as a web browser. So I opened Firefox, went to Blogger, created a new account, did a test post, was satisfied that it was a fault with Chrome and then ... couldn't sign out.
Anyhow, I had something to talk about, so opened up Chrome this morning and went to Blogger and was asked for my details; something I haven't had to do for a long time. I did this, figuring that whatever problem it was had been sorted. Except, it wouldn't sign me in. It accepted my details, but wouldn't let me leave the sign in page. I scratched my head, perplexed. I searched around Blogger's site for some info; emailed Roger and tried to access my fake account on Firefox. There was nothing helpful from Blogger. Roger was in and using it and my fake account would let me post something. Very weird.
So I went through the signing in bollocks; got confirmation, changed my password, cleared my cache and did all the other suggestions that I usually sneer at as bollocks. Still no access to my blogs. Hm... This was getting annoying. Then I noticed I had two emails from Blogger regarding access; one of them said it had found another blog linked to me and would I like to link it directly?
Huh? Another blog? Not likely. But I thought it might be a clue to what is happening. So I clicked on the link and it tells me that the blog - Secrets & Lies - was now linked to my blog list. Of course, because I still could not get into my own account I couldn't look at it. So, I used my fake account to access Phill Hall blogs and there it was, Secrets & Lies. It had been created on May 25 and was ornate, had my profile prominently displayed and the description: The real story behind Phil Hall's life in comics.
I certainly didn't do it. But, it's got to have come from somewhere. The obvious giveaway is that my first name has been spelled the old way and that it was unlinked, but somehow associated with me in some way. Like I said, weird.
So, if you are reading this, how have I managed to get into my blogs? Well, I'm using Internet Explorer, which allowed me to sign in, which suggests the problem could be linked to my browsers - Chrome and Firefox; seems unlikely, but why else? Of course, I haven't tried to post anything or sign out of this account yet, but at the moment I have access to what is rightfully mine, which dispenses with the idea that I might have been hacked a lot worse than is apparent. because, I must have had some attack, otherwise this phantom blog wouldn't have appeared.
Anyhow; I can't be arsed farting about like this to maintain Blogger blogs if they're going to screw me about; so I've created two new blogs on WordPress, which will, unless things get back to normal, take over the publishing of this blog and will continue to serialised My Monthly Curse on a separate blog. I'll give the URLs and stuff when I've got them looking how I want them and am sure that I'm doing everything right, because WordPress makes Blogger look like a system designed for idiots... oh...
The wrinkles don't stop though. The reason I don't use IE is because of it's crapness. I wrote a blog entry this morning, in Word, because of the Blogger difficulties. When I came to cut and paste it into an empty template; IE wouldn't let me paste anything. The paste tool appears to be disabled. It won't even let me cut and paste text from this blog entry! At least not by using right click. IE is monstrously bad, complicated and I really hope I don't have to use it again for a long time...
Tuesday, May 24, 2011
Monday, May 23, 2011
Sunday, May 22, 2011
Saturday, May 21, 2011
Thursday, May 19, 2011
Former Comics International editor Phil Hall has made numerous allegations about Skinn's character, including claiming that Skinn fired him in January 1997 for missing a business meeting to attend his mother's funeral.. Skinn claims that as Hall was working freelance, he could not be fired and that Hall's memory must be at fault as his mother had died almost a year earlier.
Monday, May 16, 2011
Saturday, May 14, 2011
I watched the final episode of Stargate Universe on Wednesday, it was a series that, imho, was for a large part better than SG1 (albeit after Jack left) and much much better than the pooey Atlantis. This isn't rocket science and we are talking Stargate, after all.
Universe was Battlestar Galactica meets Voyager meets Lost in Space.
There were a couple of characters that really worked - Everett Young, the guy in charge; excellent character - watching him go insane on a weekly basis was a true highlight. Nicholas Rush played by Begby aka Robert Carlyle, a real post modern Zachary Smith, but with balls. And, Eli Wallace, who was the one that probably struck a chord with most SF fans - the computer game geek in space; David Blue's character was allowed to grow in the two series probably more than anyone else and it was fitting the final part should focus on him.
And what a finale? Keeping the grimy, nasty theme alive until the last knockings. It was a brilliant ending for a better than average series and it amazes me that SyFy (what an awful moniker) cancelled this and kept Haven. Universe had no big massive ending as such; it had both a hollow and oddly fulfilling 'conclusion' - if you can get your head around that. Great last 90 seconds though; really, really excellent; possibly the entire franchise's finest hour.
It very much appears that the jury is reconsidering its verdict regarding Doctor Who. Even some of Steven Moffat and Matt Smith's biggest defenders are questioning whether the series actually benefits from an ultra-confusing US styled season long plot thread. The speculation that the current plot is actually going to spread out across all 13 episodes rather than just this half season has got non-nerds contemplating their commitment. From what I've read - probably all wild speculation any how - is that the death of the Doctor, the child/Timelord, Amy and the one eyed woman, are not all necessarily to do with each other.
I had this entire blog entry called 'Multiverses' which delves into my own speculation regarding DW but I decided to not bother running it because of the way I was feeling; why don't I just cut and paste it in here?
The following contains Doctor Who spoilers and a couple of theories...