Encore!


Well I reckon the world managed to put on a pretty decent show over the last couple of weeks.* Perhaps even more surprisingly the hosts haven’t been too shabby so far either, which is a relief. It’s even been nice to see journalists discover that positive stories sell more newspapers!

Ok so the pre-interval ceremony (as Channel 4 have been pointing out, we’ve just had the warm up so far!) had it’s ups (union flag stage, hats with light bulbs on, more of those amazing pixels, and taxis covered in LEDs) and downs (unseemly reappearance of the fashion industry before the flame had even gone out) but all in all things are going rather well. Definitely looking forward to getting back in the Copper Box in September.

* Imagine the world behaving itself better the rest of the time. Maybe one day.

Handball 2 – 1 Hockey


[If you’ve arrived here looking for the Stratford Gate bridge water feature, it’s called bit.fall according to the Art in the Park publication.]

What an amazing day. The Olympic queueing event had been cancelled so we arrived in plenty of time for the first Handball session of the day:

Handball was definitely a tactical selection in the first ticket lottery but it was an absolute winner. Hope we see more handball in the UK after the games finish. Next up was hockey (and, being open air, a quick shower):

After the excitement of handball, I nearly fell asleep in the first 0-0 bore draw. Thank goodness the second game was a tad more interesting. Ok, it was team GB so we weren’t completely impartial, but it was definitely a better game and there were even some goals!

The Olympic park was pretty good as well. There are plenty of quieter spots to escape some of the crowds, or at least there were before the athletics started! We found this difficult-to-photo water feature under the bridge from the Stratford gate (it’s better than it looks!):

Diamond Geezer has a handy guide to the Olympic Park if you’re going to visit.

Updated: added link to Art in the Park since people have been trying to find out about Julius Popp’s bit.fall (4th August 2012)

Olympic flash mob


Just caught a bit of Britain’s Olympic Torch Story on the TV which reminded me I meant to post about the torch relay after it came through Fareham:

I had suitably low expectations but it was actually quite entertaining. Just possibly not for the intended reasons! We were waiting opposite the bus station where people were playing chicken with buses while the road was still open. It was more amusing when the road was theoretically closed but no one had stopped the traffic- I don’t think the bronze control vehicle should have been in a medal position!

After the warm up acts, the main event got under way with random music and dancing about from the sponsors. There were also a whole bunch of support vehicles and police of varying degrees of jolliness to get the crowd cheering and waving their recently purchased flags. (Some of those flags looked suspiciously like they’d carefully avoided any protected expressions!)

After all the excitement, some random bloke (who seemed to think he was Usain Bolt) sprinted past with a fancy looking flame thrower.

Shortly afterwards the crowd dispersed in a distinctly flash-mob-esque style.

Good fun but I can’t help thinking it was a bit of a missed opportunity. The sponsors were pretty unlikely to influence my choice of soft drink, next technology purchase or current account provider, but one of them could have at least made some kind of effort to introduce the torch bearer. Maybe they could have pointed out he wasn’t actually in the Olympics and tried to slow him up a bit!

Talking of missed opportunities, it’s a pity that for London 2012 we couldn’t actually have run the Paralympics and Olympics in parallel, instead of weeks apart. That would have really been something.

The year of DIY SOS


First of all,

Happy New Year!

Now that all that Christmas nonsense is out of the way it’s time to attempt to get back to writing posts a bit more regularly. Before anyone gets too excited that is likely to mean a lot of rambling on about fixing up our new house; 2011 was the marathon house buying year but 2012 is going to be a whole Olympiad of jobs that need doing on the house of many leaks!

Given the number of leaks we already have, one job that I’m not planning to do myself is replacing the bathroom. We’re still trying to figure out the best way to fit everything in without everything looking odd or squashed. My pencil and paper scribbles have evolved into a highly realistic 3D rendering quick 3D sketch in Second Life to see what it might look like. Apart from our bathroom looking extremely small when dropped in the middle of a field on its own, it was a very simple way to get a rough visualisation.

I haven’t quite managed to use bathroom sketches as an excuse to buy a Galaxy Note… yet… maybe if it was just a little bit cheaper!

The other project I keep contemplating is whether to put in some structured wiring. While decorating and pulling up floors would seem like the perfect opportunity. Unfortunately there’s no obvious place to put a so called ‘node zero’. I guess I could put a patch panel in the loft and defer choosing the final location until later. Would that work? And is there an easy trick for running cables behind dot and dab dry lined walls? Using 8 or 16 pair cable seemed like it might make things simpler than pulling through multiple cables, but that doesn’t seem particularly easy to get hold of in the UK. There’s a good chance decorating will just overtake any ideas about installing ethernet cables but I haven’t completely given up the idea.

Next job: sanding.