I rarely can find the time to blog in recent weeks. So much has been going on and my evenings tend to be packed with either catching up with family, friends, or television. (Occasionally sport, mostly American imports). I thought it would be good to have Friday evening to myself to catch up on things, sort things out (my room is a tip and my Dad is constantly reminding me to clear it up!). I just have been too busy and when I have had the time or at least planned the time, other things have happened to knock me off course.
The past few weeks have been busy and I am trying hard to work out what is worth mentioning. My usual source would be notes I have made, but I have tended to not have the time or chance to do that these days (perhaps this will change now I have my Desire and can upload notes to Google Mail or somewhere else in the cloud quite promptly). Twitter is usually very good and pinpointing my movements, emotions and activities, but even on that side of things I have been rather lapse on the tweets.
I was recommended the Yoruba Girl Dancing blog, by Michelle, as it was written by her friend Bim. She was also using WordPress, which was the blogging platform I was trying to migrate over to (at a tortoise pace) and she was able to offer me some advice and useful links to check out. It was her post from late May that appealed as it mentioned an upcoming brand new TV show by JJ Abrams starring the gorgeous Gugu Mbatha-Raw. (Firstly, as anti double barrelled names as I am, in this case I will make an exception. Secondly she was the hot sister of Martha Jones from Doctor Who and she would have made a better assistant Russell T. Davis!). I left a comment as you do, promising to catch the show when it aired Stateside in the fall. The first episode screened late last month and I watched it on Saturday evening. I am yet to e-mail Bim with a full review, but will do soon after this post goes live (or at the very least at some point over the weekend!). It was good clean fun, not too taxing on the brain but enough going on to keep you occupied. It is too early to say whether it will last beyond the first series (I am not sure how many episodes NBC have ordered) but I enjoyed the ride. It was funny too, good to see a show not take itself too seriously. However, I just feel there are already enough spy shows on television (particularly US television) so cannot see how this will last (apart from the fact that the two main characters are black – that can only be a good thing). Gugu’s American accent is very convincing and she even gets the chance to drop into her Received Pronunciation during the course of the opening episode.
As I am on the subject of television, the old favourites are back: Chuck, Fringe (which I am watching on Sky1), Glee (only seen the first episode so far) and The Big Bang Theory. I find as I have less time in the evenings than when I lived and worked in Newbury it is hard to fit in all the evening entertainment, alongside a square meal and some time online. I forget how much a luxury it was, to finish work at 5pm and be home within ten minutes and have the whole evening of some six hours, stretching out before me. I tend to have an hour or so in the evening to perhaps slot in an episode but then really have to get myself into bed. Waking up at 5:45am is hard work, but the knowledge that I will have a less stressful journey into work and being able to leave the office promptly at 4:30pm, which makes all the difference to my journey back home. Throw into this mix, the new TV shows, such as Undercovers as well as the remake of Hawaii-Five-O (I only watched the opening twenty minutes with my Dad, who instantly took a disliking to everything the producers had done in this update).
I watched two rather poor movies last weekend. On Saturday evening at Michelle’s house, we were wondering what to watch in the afternoon after lunch and could only find Sorority Row on Sky Movies HD. I remember seeing the trailer at the cinema over a year ago but this was not a film I had wanted to really see. Horror movies are not my cup of tea and in particular these teen slasher movies (which started with Scream series). I can recall a very bad experience going to UCI Wycombe Six to see I Still Know What You Did Last Summer with all my college friends in May 1999 (we took up the entire row in the biggest screen at the multiplex). This genre of movie is completely ridiculous, with directors/producers trying to come out with more outlandish ways to kill off the cast. It was a remake (I have not seen the original and doubt I ever will) but this was just a complete waste of two hours of my life that I will never get back. I am surprised there is still a market for these movies, but then I forget what I was like as a sixteen year old, but then perhaps these movies are packaged for people my sister Julie’s age.
Michelle wanted to see an action movie, so we headed to Wycombe with her brother, Steve to watch Buried. (Yes, I am well aware that this is not the action movie that Michelle had asked for her but it was her choice plus the 85% rating on Rotten Tomatoes had clinched the deal.) Although having said that there were not a great deal of options at the the cinema last weekend. The only viable alternative would have been Back To The Future. While I would have loved to had seen the movie on the big screen, I have seen it so many times I do not feel I am missing anything if I am honest. Again, we had seen the short, thirty second trailer for this movie a while back, I think when we went to see Knight & Day back in August. I had not picked up from the trailer that the star of the movie was Ryan Reynolds. Having said that, he puts on a great performance, but it is hard to get away from that fact that this is ninety minutes of a man trapped in a coffin trying to find a way out. It was mediocre at the best of times and the ending was rather a let down. If I am honest, it is not a movie I would have gone to the cinema to see, or even rent on DVD. I may have caught it on TV, if I did not have anything more interesting to do. Great to see Reynolds taking on deeper serious acting roles and showing his depth (he was a surprise in Blade Trinity, if you recall his macho physique) but this is not a movie I would recommend. I think if you are in the right frame of mind and happy to go on the emotional journey, then perhaps this may be for you.
I am finding it hard to come up with other things worthwhile mentioning. My HTC Desire is working a dream. Received my case and screen protector from Proporta on Wednesday, so my mobile is now fully covered from what life can throw at it. I have downloaded a great deal of apps, in the first few days. Including, Shazam, as I often find myself listening to songs on the radio but never getting the chance to find out who the artists or track name was. I usually resort to Googling (is that a valid verb?) any of the lyrics I have cared to remember. The official Sky+ Remove Record application from BSkyB, IMDB, Movies by Flixster, and the fantastic XBMC Remote. I see myself going on the Market on a daily basis and scouring the web to find the must-have applications for Android. Thankfully the phone came pre-loaded with Froyo and no Vodafone bloatware!
How many numbers in your phone contacts do you actually speak to on a regular basis? I have too many contacts on my E65 and although I am sure there is a way for me to sync these to my Desire, I have decided against this. Even if that may mean a sync to Outlook and then Outlook to the HTC handheld but I am opting to do the old school manual input. Why? Well I need to “cut the fat” so to speak and actually keep only the numbers I need. My phone has already scoured Facebook and added those with their mobile number on their profiles into my Contact List. Great! However, like most people I have too many “friends” on Facebook who are just really casual acquaintances, people I once worked with or went to school with several years ago. I am going to try to transfer across my contacts this weekend, before finally wiping my last ever Nokia and giving it to a family member.
If anyone has any apps they think I would find useful, please get in touch! I am keen to make the most of the device! I think it will be fully tested, when I go to visit my best friend Dave in Wrexham at the start of November. There will be a great deal of tweeting and uploading images to FlickR during the course of the weekend, including photos of Jayden.
Talking of David, several months ago, Dave tweeted about having a nice brew of Yorkshire Tea. I replied, hoping he would make me a cup or two over the first weekend in November when I am up in Wrexham. His response was no, I would have to make do with Tetley or PG Tips. You can imagine my surprise, therefore to receive a bag of Yorkshire Tea with my Proporta order. I saved this cup for Friday afternoon, after I had signed off from work! Dave was quick to respond on Twitter, apparently I would never go back!