"Art is not a mirror with which to reflect the world; it is a hammer with which to shape it"

Tuesday, 18 December 2007

OK Computer

So what ‘very important thing’ shall I post about today? Global warming? Economic meltdown? Possible timetable for nuclear war? Nah! Let’s go with a post for people like me… idiots!

Or more precisely, this is a post for all those people like me who are normally quite sane and intelligent* but when confronted by technology turn into a particularly stupid two-year old. And so to a modern morality tale... or at least a modern tale with some sort of moral. Or maybe even a moral with some sort of modernity in its tale. Don’t ask me…

Sometimes my head is filled with luminous luxuriant thoughts brimming full of such magnificence and glory that the sun itself could be dimmed by them; of course, mainly my thoughts tend to burble along like a clear mountain stream with a song that sings of cats, music, cats, film, cats, music, cars, music, cats and cats… And, of course, sometimes my head is just filled with a sort of molasses-like drivel that makes no sense to man nor beast.

Of late my laptop slowed to a crawl… taking upwards of five to ten minutes to load a single web page, so I gave up trying, and at one point became so gummed up that it took over an hour to become unstuck again. Now, does my poor beleaguered head tell me to think through things logically and work out how to resolve them amicably for all parties concerned? Or does it tell me to run round the ramparts wailing and gnashing my teeth waving my fist angrily at a vengeful God? Give you a clue: wasn’t the former. Finally, the brain found some semblance of sanity and remembered what I used to do on a semi-regular basis. Before the rot set in.

And here comes the moral for all the technophobes and fellow idiots out there…

Laptops, and presumably other devices, have various things lurking around inside them. These things are sometimes put there to help. There is a thing called ‘Cache’. This needs clearing out on occasion. There is a thing called ‘cookies’. These should be eaten occasionally and the crumbs disposed into the midden. If you have an ‘Ad-aware’… use it. Oh, and properly turning off ‘the machine’ rather than always just shutting the lid for hibernation is a good way of clearing the virtual memory. And lo, when all these things had been accomplished, it was good: the laptop did work wonderfully and, indeed, the internet was not actually broken.

And the moral of the story? Sometimes it’s not just the technology that’s out to get us; sometimes it’s given a more than adequate helping hand by the fool with the opposable thumbs.

Of course, the good thing about all this is that I’ve been able to take a longer than usual break from the screen which has allowed my eyes to settle back to that whole being able to see properly thing.

So, onto other mindless trivia exciting** news. I’ve spent a good deal of the last couple of weeks worrying about the fluffiest of the cats (known variously as Billy or Flib but known to himself only by his own private cat name… the only thing he actually reacts to is the sound of a mousse lid being peeled back- he just can’t spell!). So, Bill Flib came in and settled to doing absolutely nothing for a couple of days having been out scrapping all night… He’d only managed to get a hole carved out of him the size of a marble… no blood but the world’s largest quantity of vile smelling pus. And so a trip to vet to get it looked at and a second trip to the vet because I decided to worry unnecessarily. The vet cleaned the wound with a cotton-bud and the thing went in and under the skin about an inch: watching inanimate objects entering living flash where they didn’t ought is a genuinely bizarre sight. So for a while he was more a pusycat. I was very surprised at how fast this managed to heal up: two weeks to go from gaping wound to mere scab. Staggering!

Other exciting*** non-news: a CD bought on the highly addictive eBay arrived. The Best Of X-Mal Deutschland, apparently pressed in Brazil^ but bought from a nice chap in Poland. Took a grand total of 5 days to arrive which is far faster than most Brits can manage. It’s very good- how’s that for reviewing prowess? And also arriving was a nice 5-disc Stravinsky set (Orchestre de la Suisse Romande conducted by Neeme Järvi) which was a present to me from me. And I’ve gone back to ‘Untitled Conspiracy Thriller’ (UCT) with the intention of making it work properly this time. I’ve gone back to first principles and the entire plot is now on small scraps of paper pinned to a board. Currently, the major problem is the missing last ten minutes: I don’t particularly want to ‘do a Schrader’. This ending issue also seems to have flummoxed those who’ve trodden this road before me. I know these things: I checked.

And in the immortal words of Columbo ‘just one more thing’: does anybody know if the woman in the Bold 3-in-1 advert is the lovely Nicola Bryant, formerly of Doctor Who…?

*You’ve never met me… you can’t contradict!
**Legal note: I’m using the word in the loosest possible meaning of the word.
***Again with the lies!
^Not sure how legitimate this actually is but the quality’s good as are the songs.


Rob Stickler said...

...does anybody know if the woman in the Bold 3-in-1 advert is the lovely Nicola Bryant, formerly of Doctor Who…?

And if it isn't - why isn't it? Why don't they put Nicola Bryant in all adverts? Surely this would be better for all of us, and would likely take us a step closer to world peace.

Jon Peacey said...

Damn right. Think of all that peace-giving knowledge she's probably filched from the Doctor! And failing all adverts just a couple of TV appearances every now-and-again would be nice... Ah! Nicola, my second youthful crush!