Come join in at [community profile] tic_tac_woe, and get a bingo card that lets you destroy the world nine times over! (if you manage to complete it). Wipe out humanity; you know you've always wanted to. My card is beneath the cut. Slightly bothered by "return of the dinosaurs", since they've never actually left. I'm assuming it means the toothy kind, although personally I wouldn't put anything past a pelican.

Death! Destruction! Dinosaurs! )
I'm sure that I should probably have been doing useful things today, but instead I have been making clockwork dinosaurs. They don't quite work, at least without some disassembling, and careful sanding down of bits and pieces, but they sort of waddle a bit. My sister found them in Poundland. They're a brilliant design, if very small and fiddly, and putting them together was something of a comedy of rescuing bits from the cats, rescuing bits from the floor, and being incapable of telling one bit from another in the instructions. Clockwork dinosaurs under here )

So that's the only interesting thing that's happened lately. I don't seem to have posted in ages. (No change there then.) I keep meaning to, but I only ever get as far as thinking about what I want to say. I've been intending to mention a book that I read last month, as I know that it may well interest one or two of you. It's called Life With Kenneth Connor, by Jeremy Connor (he of the fisticuffs cameo in Carry On Nurse). It's not a particularly well-written book, and at less than two hundred pages it's not a particularly in-depth book, but it does provide a nice bit of insight into a fascinating life. It also gives a good account of the making of the Carry Ons, and also quite a bit of period theatre, briefly in wartime, and then mostly in the 1950s to the 1980s. Then there's He-de-Hi and 'Allo 'Allo later of course. Some interesting stuff for anybody into vintage BBC TV and radio, or Pinewood Studios. Jon Pertwee pops up, as you might expect given that he was an occasional Carry On-er, and Patrick Troughton also makes an appearance (on a motorbike!), as apparently he and KC were at drama school together. Yep, everybody on TV back then really did know each other.

Anyways, if you don't expect literary brilliance, it's a good little read. Some nice stuff about Kenneth Williams, proof that everybody in the world really does love Joan Sims, and some genuinely pleasant little LGBT moments as an added bonus. Recommended.

Also had some interesting viewing lately. I found this Screen One production on YouTube, called The Police. It's from 1990, and tells the story of a group of primary school children who set up their own police force to combat bullying. Everything goes wrong of course. An odd subject for a Screen One, since they were usually about adults, but then for all that the cast are young kids, it's not a childish story. Not cheerful or happy, but worth a watch!

Other than that, this month I have mostly been staring in mounting horror and befuddlement at the daily news, and getting caught in the rain. Meanwhile it's apparently February already. Whoever put the year into fast-forward, kindly put it back to normal speed. There's snowdrops out and daffodils coming up, and I've barely got the hang of January.

PS: Festivids happened! And there was much good stuff. Here, have some links (beneath the cut):... )

And now I have to go and do something more useful than clockwork dinosaurs. Bye.
How are we already in week #2? It's going to be 2018 before we've drawn breath at this rate. So far I'm not achieving a great deal. I started the new year by beginning to read The Brothers Karamazov, but that's ground to a resounding halt. Yeesh. There is a not a character I don't want to strangle (and I'd quite like to throttle Dostoevsky while I'm at it). I think I'll give it up for a bit, and try again later. My tenth anniversary rewatch of Torchwood was rather more successful, happily. I was pleased to find that I loved it just as much now as then, including the ones that I hadn't seen since their first showing. It looks quite hilariously cheap at times though. You can certainly tell that it was made in a hurry. Strictly speaking I should wait until this time next year for the tenth anniversary rewatch of season two, but I want to watch the James Marsters episode, so that ain't gonna happen.

In other still-old-but-newer-than-is-usual-for-me telly, I haven't watched any more Heroes since I last posted about it, because stuff always seems to get in the way. I must get back to it (preferably before Trump gets bored, and blows us all up come the summer). I think I've forgotten which episode I watched last though. Damn.

In non-fandom related stuffs... nope, sorry, that's all very boring. I ate a very nice banana this morning, if anybody's interested. Spent the weekend mainlining 1983 episodes of Top Of The Pops on the iPlayer. Peter Powell! Stupid clothes! Peter Powell in stupid clothes! Also Wham! and Spandau Ballet (more stupid clothes). Took the kitten to be spayed last week. She's now sporting a bald patch, although major surgery doesn't seem to have slowed her down any. (Technically she's not a kitten anymore, as she'll be two in May, but she has stunted growth due to a bad start in life, and also she's quite convinced she's still a kitten).

Figure A: Cats (this being the internet, you're probably familiar with the species).

The 2016 Fandom Meme, plus cats... )
swordznsorcery: (Default)
( Dec. 31st, 2016 20:48)
Obligatory end-of-year post. I was going to do the meme that everybody's posting today, but it's got too many questions! I get bored after answering about ten. So instead I'll point you at this rather wonderful 2016 song, which nicely sums up everything we've all been thinking. Not safe for work; but then it probably couldn't have been. It's tempting to hope for better for 2017, but bearing in mind that Trump hasn't even come to power yet, my natural tendency towards optimism is currently feeling a tad wobbly.

2016, then. The good bits. Best telly (other than the mothballed old stuff that I usually watch) has probably been Lucifer. I heartily recommend that one to most of you. Season one was fun last year, but season two has been terrific, and Tom Ellis is a revelation. Here he is (in character) belting out a jazzed up version of All Along The Watchtower.

Best book... I wish I could say the final Temeraire, but it seemed a bit of a damp squib, somehow. Mind you, my expectations were probably set a bit high. Instead I think I'll go with The Tyrannosaur Chronicles by Dave Hone, because tyrannosaurs. Basically he wrote the book I've been wanting since I was about four. Now all I need is for somebody to write similar ones for all the other types of dinosaur! And Dimetrodon while they're at it. And listen! The first fireworks of the evening.

Best music is an awkward one, as I don't listen to much modern stuff. Lee Mead put out a new album earlier this year, called Some Enchanted Evening, which I like a lot. Nice to see him doing some old standards, as he always was good at them. And Holly Johnson had a new single out this year called Ascension, which was good. Even if did come from the Eddie the Eagle film. (Sorry, I grew up in Cheltenham. I have an Eddie the Eagle allergy.)

Best film is another awkward one. Pretty sure I've only seen one 2016 film this year, which was the live action (well, mostly CGI, actually) remake of The Jungle Book. Fortunately I absolutely loved it, which is just as well, as I guess it wins by default. Trailer here.

Looking back at my list, I see that the first book I read in 2016 was Immortal In Death by JD Robb. Sounds frighteningly prescient for the year that was to follow, so if all of that was in any way my fault, I apologise! Last book of the year was Is There Life Outside The Box? by Peter Davison. Less murder, more jokes. Also, a special pair of sentences for you, [personal profile] lost_spook! On page 196: "I was keen to make The Last Detective; it reminded me of a show I'd watched as a teenager called Public Eye that starred Alfred Burke. With its easy pace and gentle humour and world-weary central character, it had been a success for many years." (Yeah, he's not in love with punctuation. Sorry about that. ;) The index, however, is a thing of beauty.) But see! All you need to do is abduct Peter Davison, and extract the missing episodes from his brain! This is a faultless plan for 2017.

Um. And I shall leave it there. Happy 2017, everybody. Let's try to keep the NHS; try to stop Trump inadvertently starting a nuclear war with China via Twitter; and, I don't know. Hope that Trump takes his head off, and reveals that he was Hillary Clinton all along? Well, it's a thought.

See you in January.
I'm basically being trolled by cats now. I just cleaned out my keyboard, and there was at least one full cats worth of fur stuffed under the keys. They must get together to poke it down there when I'm not around. None of which is what I came here to post. What did I come here to post? Nothing. Something. I ought to post something, as I never do, and the rest of you lead interesting lives, or at least manage to make yourselves sound interesting, and I'm just here being me.

I read a book! It was a very nice book. It's called The Tyrannosaur Chronicles, by Dave Hone (except he's called David Hone on the cover, to make himself sound more serious and sciencey). It's all about the biology of tyrannosaurs, and what we know, and how we know what we know, and it's full of nice diagrams of skeletons. Also it's purple. 99.9% of you aren't remotely interested, but I'm recommending it anyway, as I promised I would. (I read some other books too, but this one was best).

I've also been watching films, on and off. I've been trying to watch one a week, as I haven't really watched films in years, and to start with I decided it was high time I got around to seeing the Back To The Future trilogy. It's supposedly one of those iconic 80s things, but despite seeing the first one at the cinema about two million years ago, I'd never seen the others. I shan't be bothering again! Although the third one wasn't entirely bad. Then I rewatched the Indiana Jones trilogy to make me feel better about 80s films (and indeed 80s film trilogies, I suppose). That was much, much better. Also 100% more Tip Tipping. The Last Crusade also featured surprise Julian Glover, which was nice. And then after that, I watched the proper Star Wars trilogy, because they actually put out the proper, non-fiddled-with version on DVD, and Amazon was nice enough to be selling it second hand for 12p. Han clearly fires first, sorry George. It was lots of fun, but sadly Return Of The Jedi left me with the Ewok theme song stuck in my head for three days. Here: click at your peril. Dear me, the eighties were a strange place at times.

Some pictures and things )
swordznsorcery: (methos)
( Mar. 17th, 2016 20:12)
Memed from [personal profile] liadtbunny. I actually did this several days ago, and then forgot to make the post public, and now obviously several of the answers have changed! So I'll add the new ones in brackets.

... )
swordznsorcery: (ratpack)
( Dec. 12th, 2015 17:58)
A weird sort of coincidence comes with today's post. Today in real time (12th December 2015) is Frank Sinatra's 100th birthday. Happy birthday, Frankie! But today in 40 Years Of Nonsense time is 1995, which is the year that Dean Martin left the stage. On Christmas Day, no less - well, he always did hate parties! Naturally this requires marking in suitable fashion, but I shall leave that until later.

Otherwise, 1995 was basically fun. This was the year that I moved into cyberspace more or less full time. The Net was very much still growing, but there was already a lot going on, certainly in the world of fandom. Lovely early (very simple, largely text based) sites on cult movies and TV shows, many of the kind that the "real" (sadly non-geek-based) world had largely forgotten. Blake's 7 fandom! Actual, real fans, with little pictures lovingly kept from old editions of Radio Times. Fans of Jon-Erik Hexum. As much dinosaur information as I could want, kept up to date, and not written for six year olds, the way that so many of the available books are. And, in modern (for 1995!) Tellyland, lots of people to obsessively discuss Babylon 5 with, on the newly started Channel 4 internet forum. That place was my first internet home, and I loved it. It closed down in 2006, and I've never quite found another place to match it.

It was also the year of Made In Heaven of course: the final Queen studio album to feature Freddie. It made use of the last few songs that he had recorded, as well as some earlier ones that were 'Queenified' - some solo stuff, a song he'd recorded with Roger in the 80s, etc. I was a bit dubious as to how it would all turn out, but in the event it was excellent, and one of the songs on the album wound up being one of my all time favourite Queen tracks. That was a single in 1996 though, so will have to wait until tomorrow!

Lots else in the music world this year. Best of all, the E Street Band got back together! Oasis followed up last year's debut with a mega smash hit second album. The Human League came back after a hiatus of some years. Edwyn Collins was another vintage star with a major league hit this year, so maybe there was something in the water. Pulp had their biggest hit yet with the Different Class album, that really made their name. Supergrass were everywhere, if briefly. Ash made a huge debut with 1977, and Coolio was #1 forever with Gangsta's Paradise, the theme from the Michelle Pfeiffer film Dangerous Minds.

And James Bond came back! With the head I'd been wanting him to have for years. No disrespect meant to Timothy Dalton, who was great, but for me, James Bond is Pierce Brosnan. And GoldenEye was amazing. Fab theme song sung by Tina Turner as well, with some of the most brilliantly appropriate lyrics ever. "You'll never know how I've watched you from the shadows as a child/You'll never know how it feels to get so close and be denied." Still, as it turned out it was for the best that Brosnan did "get so close and be denied" back in 1987.

On the small screen meanwhile, the BBC premiered Due South, and that version of Pride & Prejudice. Darcy-fever, everywhere. A bad year for comedy though. We lost Peter Cook and Paul Eddington this year. Kenny Everett as well, more's the pity. And it was the year when Christopher Reeve had his fall whilst horse-riding. The news came in on the day of my final exam, iirc. A sad start to the summer.

... )
swordznsorcery: (paradox)
( Dec. 7th, 2015 21:10)
The nineties came in with a flurry of absurd fashions, if I'm remembering things right. Long hair with centre partings and lots of floppy fringes. Ridiculously baggy clothing. MC Hammer with the world's stupidest trousers in the video for U Can't Touch This. One of those decades when I could be very grateful for not being fashionable! Better stuff going on in other avenues though. Nelson Mandela was freed this year, which was a great thing to see. Brian Keenan was released as well, after four and a half years in Lebanon. The British public actually managed to accomplish something constructive this year as well, standing up to the Poll Tax, and eventually forcing Margaret Thatcher out of office. Why can't we do that kind of thing anymore? Her resignation was one of those great moments in history (I fully accept that other political viewpoints do exist, but the important thing to remember is that they're wrong).

And as for the rest of the year - we lost Sammy Davis Jr, which was a terrible shame. I don't know quite when I first latched on to the whole Rat Pack thing - certainly it all started with Dino, but the other two weren't that far behind; and Sammy was a heck of a talent. Elsewhere, Sue the T. rex was found in the hills of Dakota, a truly beautiful discovery. This was the pop video that everybody was talking about. Woman dances seamlessly with cartoon! It looked really impressive. Guess I hadn't seen this yet. Not that it cheapens Opposites Attract exactly, but when you've seen Gene Kelly dance with a cartoon, Paula Abdul seriously ain't gonna cut it anymore. You know, that's either one gigantic mouse, or Gene Kelly was a lot shorter than I've been led to believe...

Good year for the telly. The Mary Whitehouse Experience transferred from Radio 1. I loved it because it was funny, but I must admit that I also loved it because my mother wholly disapproved of the theme music. When you're fifteen, you know a TV show is good if even just the theme tune makes your mother bristle! Fry & Laurie were still doing their sketch show for the BBC, but also started the excellent Jeeves & Wooster for the other side. And they filmed bits of it near here. I didn't see them, but there was much local excitement! Quantum Leap aired for the first time, and Drop The Dead Donkey as well. Probably not all at the same time. I was still watching a lot of TV in those days, but even I couldn't have handled that. I think Have I Got News For You started in 1990 too. It was still watchable then, before they sacked Angus.

But for me, one thing above all else sums up 1990. On August 8th, my mother decided that we had been without a cat for long enough, and we went to visit the local branch of the Cats Protection League. There was a little tabby there, with half a tail, and a whole lot of personality. I can't claim that it was love at first sight, as she'd been badly treated by somebody, and was a little bundle of nerves to begin with, but we got over that in time. She was the best thing that ever happened to me. The 8th August 1990 was a Good Day.

Music time )
swordznsorcery: (steele/laura)
( Nov. 30th, 2015 20:48)
Two of my siblings got driving licences in 1983. Mobility! For a little while anyway. Mobhanded about the countryside, in a wobbly van roughly the colour of cowpats. It had a dodgy handbrake, was religiously opposed to reverse, and it wasn't a good idea to open the passenger window - and it definitely wouldn't have passed any modern emissions tests. But it moved. We went to see Superman III in it. Not a great film! I liked it at the time though. The woman being turned into a walking computer actually seemed pretty scary back then. Saw Return Of The Jedi too - believe it or not, my first Star Wars film. I was mostly wondering who the Jedi was, and where he had been, but it wasn't a bad place to jump in at, Ewoks notwithstanding. Still waiting for a Han, Chewie and Lando spin-off though!

Otherwise, this was the year that saw The A-Team, Simon & Simon, Remington Steele, TJ Hooker and Knight Rider all hit British shores. Folks, we have reached peak eighties telly! As long as I live, I think I shall always be a bit confused by shows that don't have shoot-outs, cars flying randomly through the air, and heroes locked in warehouses that are suspiciously easy to break out of. This is clearly the default state of television. They don't even bash heroes over the head and tie them up in car crushers anymore. Might mess up their hair, I suppose. Although if AJ Simon can manage with his fuzzy mop, you'd think anybody could. 1983 was also the year when we got the Bo-and-Luke-free season of The Dukes Of Hazzard. Bit baffling back in those days, when we couldn't get on the internet to find out what the bloody hell was going on! Still, they came back soon enough.

Music wise, I suppose 1983 was the year of Wham!. They'd had a song out the previous year, but they had about three hundred in 1983, and my sister never stopped singing them. For the first time, when she was singing something I actually didn't mind. I've always been a fan of Wham!. I should probably be embarrassed to admit that, but I'm not. Otherwise, Keith Harris and Orville singing Orville's Song proved to be the only thing that would stop my baby sister from crying whilst she was teething. Please forgive us, but we bought the bloody thing, thereby helping them climb dangerously close to #1. I can still sing it. Unbelieveably though, it's not the worst song to hit the charts that year. Rene & Renato probably win that, with Save Your Love. (I'm not posting a link to it - just believe me).


... )

I'm not saying much about books, am I. Just imagine an endless waterfall of Willard Price, Franklin W Dixon and Enid Blyton, and you won't go far wrong. Also anything remotely shark or dinosaur flavoured. This led to me attempting to read Jaws when I was staying with my grandparents.

Yikes. The book is a lot naughtier than the film...!
So, I was watching the final episode of Dempsey & Makepeace, and there they are creeping about in some cellar place, all guns drawn, and in danger of being shot by the bad guy, and suddenly we get this:



And my first thought is "Don't blink!" But in actual fact she's not even looking at the thing, so blinking is the least of her concerns. Turn around, Harry! Quickly! And then, as an added bit of Whoification, the Rani was in the same episode, pretending to be a cop. She got deaded, which was a bit rubbish of her, but I'm assuming she regenerated when they weren't looking. Anyway, it wasn't a very good episode, sadly - rather an unfortunate one to end on, although I'm pretty sure they didn't know at the time that it was the last one - but you know things are bad when a supposedly exciting creep-about-in-the-dark-with-guns, is less exciting than wondering whether a statue might be an evil alien. Hey ho.

Mind you, later on they did loads of stuff filmed in the Natural History Museum, and that was lovely. They had dinosaurs and everything, including a fabulous cross-section through a giant sequoia. They didn't visit my whale though. Still, it's not often that a cop show gives you dinosaurs, so that was good.

Bye then, Dempsey and Makepeace. It's been fun. Now I shall be all Remingtonsteeley for the foreseeable future. No time-travelling alien monster statues in that, at least so far. Tom Baker, but no evil statues. I will report back if one turns up though, have no fear.
Ye gods, with all the thanks in the world to [livejournal.com profile] sabethea for putting me on to this one...



On the twelfth day of Christmas, swordznsorcery sent to me...
Twelve dragons drumming
Eleven Methos piping
Ten books a-leaping
Nine trilobites dancing
Eight megalodons a-milking
Seven sharks a-writing
Six pirates a-reading
Five fo-o-o-ossils
Four dinosaurs
Three Westerns
Two Kronos
...and a Highlander in an I Love Lucy.
Get your own Twelve Days:


Best. Christmas. Song. Ever. :) And two Kronoses. Kroni? At any rate, it's just as well I have eleven piping Methoses to keep them all in order. The mind boggles. But is happy while it does it. And dancing trilobites, hurrah. C'mon, everyone. Let's see yours!

Now if you'll excuse me, I have to go and find out how to milk a megalodon. John Barrowman might know...
TV meme, shamelessly nicked from several people on my f-list. Behind a cut, because it's me, and I can't not waffle.

... )
swordznsorcery: (paradox)
( Feb. 14th, 2014 18:49)
Okay, so back in November (ish) [livejournal.com profile] sabethea made a post discussing a particular list of "One Hundred Books You Must Read", and asking for other people to make their own recommendations on a similar theme. I had intended to have a go at answering the question at the time, but there was [community profile] fandom_stocking, and [livejournal.com profile] dw_50ficathon, and some stuff involving actual real people too, believe it or not. But here now, belatedly, is a book post. There aren't one hundred recommendations, although I might just about be able to squeak that if pressed. Due to reasons of space, most of my books are packed away just at the moment though, so I have nothing to refer back to, which complicates things. Neither is this is a list of "Books You Must Read", because that sort of thing is clearly nonsense. Instead it's a jumbled and probably incomplete list of books that I've especially enjoyed, or that have made, at some point, a particular impression. Not such a snappy title, I know, but a far less obviously inaccurate one.

Books... and quite a lot of rambling, sorry. )
Been reading this rather delightful book that I finished last night. It's called How To Keep Dinosaurs, by Robert Mash. Basically, it describes the dinosaurs best suited to domestic use, as well those most usually kept in safari parks, or sometimes farmed commercially. It's a very helpful guide if you're planning on getting a dinosaur as a pet, and lays out dietary requirements, care hints, and other useful bits of information, such as whether it's at all likely to eat your children. Or you. Or your neighbours. That sort of thing. There's also a very helpful series of symbols to aid in the description of the various species. I must say, I am very tempted. Problem is, I'd have to get a herbivore, as there's no way I could supply live food. I'd keep rescuing it. Carrion tends to cause smelly breath, too, and that's not always something that you want in an affectionate pet. Unless it's a cat, obviously, as they're forgiven everything. Anyways, some of the herbivores seem to be rather dim, which is a little unfortunate.

Cut to keep things tidy )
.

Tags

Syndicate

RSS Atom
Powered by Dreamwidth Studios

Style Credit

Expand Cut Tags

No cut tags