March 2003 Archives

Woke up and recieved an


Woke up and recieved an authorise request on ICQ, wondering who was my nice new friend today. Found out it was Elaine with some asinine thing about her website being used to host this thing on boycotting American goods. In the words of a great band: Who Invited You? Moron.

Looking forward to watching Michael Moore on Bill Maher's show later. Always entertaining surely.

If I hear about another journalist "embedded" in an American/British military unit, I'm going to embed something up CNN's ass.

Bought a new mousepad from CompUSA, which otherwise is a poor excuse for a retail store selling overpriced, substandard hardware.

Found Allison on the Opera fans picture gallery here. Aerospace design. Nifty. Yeah, working for Opera? Where do I sign up :)? She also has a number of skins, that are nice and useful, due to their small toolbars - maximising screen space (you're on 800-600 too?). They're not really my style, I prefer more eye-candy-ish stuff if I was still using the XP visual styles, and anyway I've gone back to classic now to save resources and am just using the "windows" skin. Or Nemo.

Just ordered another bunch of CD-R's, TDK as usual - never went back to nasty unbranded stuff after all the trouble it gave me. Got another 150, since the last 150 are gone :). Especially when I started burning series they went pretty fast, what with Firefly, Enterprise, Roswell, Twin Peaks etc. Especially those on VCD.

It's really only here that I feel this mixture of happy and unhappy together, nice to be where I am and happy about the situation but unhappy about all the things I'm normally unhappy about. Thank god I'll never have to deal with academic work ever again after all this is over. Have half a mind to promise myself to build my system after I'm done. But then I'd have to find a job first. Hope the careers advisor got my mail and replies to it soon, or else I'll have to get annoyed. Looking forward to having even better resolutions to utilise with my groovy new monitor, since using my notebook's graphics isn't doing it justice I don't think.

Apparently people are finding my


Apparently people are finding my site at random nowadays, some guy from france (hello Mr.Bryce), a nutty fucker basically, told me he found it searching for subtitles and buffy. I'm no. 6 on Google searching for subtitles and Louis. Woo Hoo. Watching what is really a pretty shit new WB series called Black Sash. I suppose it's interesting since the main star is a the older Chinese guy which is a change, though they managed to get me to watch it by trailing it with young pretty women, with nary a mention of the main storyline.

E-Donkey's annoying me, since it's pretty slow and doesn't seem to understand the idea of queues. I suppose it is pre 1.0, but it's still pretty annoying.

Bored now.

Nothing's on TV except second rate films and half assed series, mostly repeats. Enjoying ads the most at the moment, just saw the Sprint PCS one with the teenage girls having a drop down all out bitch fight over their shared mobile. Very Fight Club, very funny. The lack of heating isn't so bad at the minute, but has the great potential of pissing me off. Been craving large hunks of meat recently, might succumb to a steak-burger soon, just because I can. Suppose fish-cakes isn't too bad. Wish I could start building my new system now.

Just feel like typing. Lowered


Just feel like typing. Lowered my table so as to be more ergonomic, and it is. Mouse still seems a bit annoying but I'm sure I'm just obsessing. I'm just wondering whether after all it wouldn't be better to have a normal rather than split keyboard. Perfect Strangers is on BBC America, which is nice. Wouldn't it be nice to live life to Poliakoff music. Been discovering the wonder of E-Donkey, though I must say, all the more popular files can already be found on Kazaa, and Kazaa's just more efficient as far as I know. Might be having some issues because I'm behind a router but can't be bothered to fix it, even if I could figure out how.

Helped Peishan out installing her USB 2.0 drivers over the phone a couple of days back. Wonder how her burning is going. At least she finally bit the bullet and bought the stuff. Just imagine her going for the nicer looking Iomega over the rather blocky ones that are de-rigeur nowadays.

Have just spent the entire


Have just spent the entire day, instead of working, installing and uninstalling antivirus products. Had decided that PC-Cillin was acting up a bit in not updating automatically all the time due to proxy problems left over from York. I now realise a simple uninstall reinstall would have worked. Well at least I know now that Mcafee stuff is pretty much air-tight in terms of it's product activation, and hasn't had a proper widespread crack that works to get auto updates. But like Norton, PC-Cillin is pretty easy going, though you still have to manually crack the exe file for the latter. Norton has the penchant of coming pre-cracked and ready to go. Am also going to give the Trend Micro firewall a whirl, though I've been trained to concieve of firewalls as requiring a bunch of alerts etc. Not having to use Zonealarm is nice though. Blah blah blah.

Found a lovely new mail


Found a lovely new mail service that offers IMAP for free, comes with really good reviews and probably worth checking out: Fastmail.

Really must start writing again,


Really must start writing again, if only to give me some momentum. And I do have a lovely new keyboard which is working out rather well. Natural keyboards are so the way to go for people who can touch-type. The monitor is turning out quite well, it's a Viewsonic P-95f+, which I got for a rather handsome price on Pricegrabber. None of that faux flat-screen stuff from Samsung, which I was considering, but which cost more anyway. The only thing is these lines across the screen that comes with trinitron based monitors, which are faint but noticeable, expecially if you have a white background. It's really not a problem, and I'm more or less okay with it. To be honest, I just don't feel I'm missing out too much not having an LCD, since the screen size is just fantastic for the price. Text really turns out well on the display which is super. Only thing is with the KVM, there seems to be some flicker, which is sort of annoying, but we'll see how that pans out, I'm sticking to having the monitor plugged straight into the notebook, since I don't really need the switch at the moment. Am really tempted to just buy my desktop after I hand in my essays. Wonder if they'll keep letting me into the country if I keep popping in and out. Waiting longer might convince me to go for Serial ATA drives, since the Asus motherboard supports RAID on them. But the price difference at the moment is just too high, especially with the Western Digital drives going for cheap as OEM. Might consider just getting a single 120 IDE and moving to SATA when the price drops, and if that doesn't happen, just get the other 120 drive later. We'll see.

Haven't been talking to people, and people should be able to guess why. Feeling guilty about not fulfilling Allison's request, but I'll get around to it someday - maybe I'm not someone who can just write on demand after all. Got listed on a blog directory, which hopefully will get more traffic to this, it's nice to have strangers read this stuff.

Of all the things people


Of all the things people want to cover and export to the US; Whole Again? I have to admit I actually quite like Atomic Kitten, and have done since their inception, but this blatant attempt at repackaging something for the US? And the one lyric change that sounds so awkward - "you still turn me on" to "you can do no wrong" - just smacks of them marketing youth. That said I'm finding Lillix rather fetching in their nicely contrived way.

Oscar night, nice to have


Oscar night, nice to have some festivitiy, even though I couldn't care less who's winning. Rather appreciated WGN airing their attempt at a proper awards pre-show - nice, catty, and all about frocks. Feeling in two minds about the whole managedness and appropriateness of the ceremony - makes me root for Michael Moore as documentary filmaker, just so he can go off on one and provide some entertainment. And he did :). Nice speech on fictiousness - probably the best, most sensible, thing I've heard against the war and the American administration.

My monitor is still not here, hope it'll come tomorrow. My KVM switch is turning out pretty well, but because it's purely a keyboard controlled switch, I can't just have the mouse attached. Really considering buying the Belkin switch instead of the stop-gapness of getting a PS/2 to USB converter - which would only work for one notebook anyway. Suppose the 4 port one might be a good investment, since I have more than one notebook. The audio would really not be a problem, since I'd probably be wanting to play music on a different box, but with the potential for a second desktop, it'd be nice to have 5.1. But then again I'm not going to be getting another box for awhile so that should be able to wait.

Hello. Now I'm not sure


Hello. Now I'm not sure who I'm saying hello to, whether it's my neglected blog or simply my adoring public, but yes, hello. Anyone who's read my blog at length, or actually knows me, knows that when I'm in Chicago, I'm quite a bit happier. That's the reason why I don't blog so much when I'm here. No need for it to make me feel better, and I'm not stuck in front of my computer quite as much.

But I figured that since the reply to my application STILL hasn't arrived, I should at least write somewhere, since I'm so not going to be writing much of my essay until I get a reply.

I'd like to draw attention to my recently acquired and quite wonderful purchases. I just bought a Microsoft Natural Multimedia Keyboard and an Intellimouse Explorer, and my are they rather fantastic. Nice and ergonomic, and just a wonder to use. Even got them really cheap through PriceGrabber, since there you can get stuff from retailers who sell things as OEM/brown box, so all you have to do is download the drivers and you're ready to go. Just be aware of the retailer scores and reviews, so you don't pick an annoying retailer. One plus was that I actually got the black/two tone keyboard which I assume is explicitly for the OEM market, and not the blue one, and it goes better with my decor. My old Intellimouse Explorer Optical as just giving me ergonomic problems from not being a moulded right handed mouse, so I'm quite thankful I switched.

My biggest indulgence since I'm been here has been to watch almost continual episodes of Once and Again, from the Season One boxed set. Fantastic stuff. Whatever it is the writer's are smoking, they are really able to make having kids basically look cool. I'll write more about Once and Again soon.

Been watching Bangles videos again. Oh my Susanna Hoffs is hot. Girls, there was a reason why she was the front-woman - so there. And judging from what Diamond (or Pearl?) aka Ms. Carpenter said about Prince and his penchant for girls who look a particular way, Suzy would have been an ideal candidate. Very come hither, very distinct sounding voice, very active. Always want to tease the connection between the Bangles and Suzanne Vega - Hero takes a fall/When Heroes go down, In Liverpool/Going down to Liverpool, and probably more that doesn't spring to mind.

This is an e-mail that


This is an e-mail that is in reply to Leigh, which I'll send out in a minute, that's a reply to her mail to me.

Hi Leigh,

First things first, my name is Louis ;). Thank you. In a way I really do apologise for the fact that I write about so much nonsense that I know no one is going to give a toss about. You're actually the first person I don't know to comment on my blog, and I'm quite happy about that. I'm sure you know, having written, that especially hearing someone talk about what they like about your writing makes you want to just tell them exactly what is wrong with your writing and why you find it so cringeworthy. But anyway, I'm coming to feel more an more that it's quite constructive (if not really useful) to just write regularly, and it's really rather empowering having a blog (especially in the beginning when no one knows about it) so you should try it. I promise I'll have at least one look ;). Well, to be honest I'd be fine if people actually read what I wrote about them, as long as they didn't go apeshit and never talked to me ever again... if I can say it, they should be able to hear it - if just for a lack of looking on their part. I'll just indulge myself a bit now and say that really - swearing and being angry is not startling or "new" in any way, and I'm getting more and more self conscious about it (thanks a bunch). Not that I'm not angry when I'm writing it, rather when you are you tend to fall back on rather unflattering stereotypes and verbal cliches which are very simply not great writing by any standard.

I've already decided that this is going to be an entry in by blog, so that's why it's going on as it is, I'll mail it to you as well. You'll find the entry here. (such meta-ness) Just thinking that your mail turns out rather well from Operamail, but more so that I think Outlook handles it with quite a bit of pinache - but then that's what you get with a pirated-worth-several-hundred-dollar-Office-Suite. Is it also from the Opera mail client? Honestly cannot stand the Opera client, for a number of reason's I've set out in the forum, it's not my favorite. Scrolling in Outlook is smooth, but sort of jerky really, which is soft and nice, and hence ergonomic, but a bit annoying.

Leigh, if you don't mind, I was wondering if you'd be so nice as to suggest me a topic - anything that I suppose would interest you in some way and you think I have some vague idea about - so I can write about it. Yes, I'm taking requests. I can't promise you when it'll be up, but I just want to see how it goes, and if people want to send in requests, I'll certainly consider them. Makes me feel like some kind of columnist.

Hope to hear from you soon.


I figure I should do


I figure I should do some sort of writing, since the other kind is so obviously not happening.

(It is heppening... again... It is heppening... again...)

Just a recommendation to those clever people now using Opera, I'm currently a big big fan of this guy's skins. His name is Christian Krebs, and his skins are breathtaking, especially Strange Truth 2 (if you like things clean), and Oxid (if you like things striking, with a very graphic designer kind of feel). Oxid is now my default skin. The red of the Hotlist button is just breathtaking on the main bar - I'm actually displaying the main bar just for that, since I don't actually use the buttons. He's also quite receptive to "bug" reports about his skin, and quite nicely acceded to a couple of requests I had about Oxid.

I've been binging on TV again, which sort of makes me happier.

Just saw the paedophile episode of CSI Miami. Don't quite know what to think. I'd like to point out the almost surreal alarmism and media frenzy surrounding paedophilia, much like the serial killer theme that was so popular in the late 90's, but cannot fully divest myself from the almost irrational manipulation that occurs with the presentation of childhood. Childhood innocence is a cult - perpetrated by adults no less - which the Hansel and Gretel episode of Buffy addressed quite well. And yet, like so many other things - war, train crashes, atomic bombs - it is not the rational, proportional loss of life that occurs to us but rather the impact on our psyche of something that is just wrong - somehow abhorrent as if it were naturally so. It is the affective nature of this that worries me about this, that in acceding to these impulses, we lose the ability to concieve of a conscientious rationalism/pragmatism. I'm not saying that rationality is utmost and inviolate - that would too simply be exclusive of man's limitation of perception and ability of imagination - but at the point of action do we dare to act on anything other than what we can concieve of as making sense, and pursuing that with eyes half closed in fear and determination, half open with conscience and unbelief?

I feel really paralysed by


I feel really paralysed by the fact that I'm still waiting for the response to my application.

I'm currently waiting for Ben to finish showering so I can go. Woo Hoo.

Ah, the Economist. You need


Ah, the Economist. You need a subscription to read this unfortunately, but the gist of it is summed up in the title and subsequent subtitles:

"Anti-war students

Dream on

Students think their protests will stop the war. Tremble, Tony"

Lest you think this is all I read, here's something from the Register. The last line is just classic.

This is what I love


This is what I love about the Economist. There are surely a great number of things wrong with being eminently sensible, but many a time it's nice to have the Economist fight your battles for you. Look at this and this. Since when did we start legislating language again? You'd think it was the French for fuck's sake. The sky is falling. Dude, your dick's on fire.

Speaking of shithead loser morons, look at this. The comments by Seeker just remind what an idiot this guy is. He was a fuck-head when he was riding me about the SDI thing, and he's still a fuck-head now. I could go off on one about him and his small mindedness regarding culture but I haven't the strength. Let's just say his sig says it all, the pseudo-liberal, bible-thumping, platitude-spouting idiot who thinks the world revolves around him. Four words my friend, SMACK MY BITCH UP.

Can't believe he's on the My Opera homepage. Bastard.

Hmm... Seems as if my


Hmm... Seems as if my ploy of putting my blog url in my Opera forum's sig is getting people to actually come here. How scary :D. Hi, fjames, nice to know you don't think I'm a complete nutter.

I suppose I always wanted more or less complete strangers to read my blog more than the people that I knew around me, since I'll probably be writing about those around me and I don't want to feel as if I can't talk/bitch/handbag whoever the hell I want to. Case in point would be me talking about people I'm attracted to like here. People already think I'm some creepy leery bastard enough anyway without stuff like this getting to the people involved. But yes, I do feel as if this is somehow a kind of record of myself, and that I want to write what I want to write about, though obviously some things (which remain known to me alone) which are off limits.

fjames seems to like MyWay, and really the main thing I like about it is that it's the first properly customisable (usefully so) TV listing guide I've used online. You can sort by just the channels you like and cut out all the crap that you don't understand/want to watch. And it works great in Opera, which is more than I can say for TV Guide online. I think I could do something like it with the SBC Yahoo service, but that's just cuz I subscribe to the ISP, MyWay is open to all, as it should be. Proprietary content that has that much of a barrier to entry - ie having to switch ISP's, just doesn't make sense. Who's going to move to AOL just to watch a couple of videos or whatever? ISP's should be access providers - and compete on price - content providers like Real etc. can move on top of that with value added services. Really, the association of yahoo with SBC sort of cheapens Yahoo's potential as a portal, if only because you can get stuff with SBC that you can't get from Yahoo ala carte, which is rather an alienating idea. The idea of an ISP locking me in to useing their service with features other than how good the access is will only succeed in me not using those services - which is why I have autonomous e-mail addresses, so that I can move ISP's at will (ironically with Yahoo...).

Need to get breakfast now, and promise to be more diligent in updating this. It's more worth it when you have an audience. And now at least one that isn't as technologically illiterate as the rest of my friends... :D

Now that I'm sure people


Now that I'm sure people have given up looking at this due to lack of updates (or let's face it - interest) I can get back to writing whatever the fuck I want. Well the real reason would obviously be that I'm just unhappy and can't be bothered to write.

That pretty much stopped me in my tracks for a couple of minutes at least. I capitulated about the whole Opera SDI thing in the forums today, you can find the post here, go to page 7.

Went for the screening of The Trial today (of my own tape no less), and really wasn't terribly impressed on the second watch. Not touching the Trial with a ten foot pole in my essay. Have to say there is a kind of effectiveness about it though, I was feeling a bit pursued when I went out to smoke, brought back memories of Ulrika and my first term. Getting really pissed off with being in York. Looking around at the Uni makes me really not want to be here any more. Been trying to get worked up with Richard about not seeing me or replying about my essay, but the more I think about it, the more I think that it's more to do with me, and there's not that much he could/would do anyway. Starting to think the premise of my work is decidedly unworkable, but who gives a flying fuck by now.

Watching Christina lipsyncing (badly) on TOTP. She's pretty pathetic doing that, but I suppose you can't blame people for not wanting to perform continuously.

Just found the quote I


Just found the quote I was (not too actively till now) looking for from the Third Man,

"In Italy for thirty years under the Borgias they had warfare, terror, murder and bloodshed, but they produced Michelangelo, Leonardo da Vinci and the Renaissance. In Switzerland they had brotherly love; they had five hundred years of democracy and peace, and what did they produce? The cukoo clock."

- Orson Welles as Harry Lime in "The Third Man"

Quite wonderful I think, and I'm not surprised Dollimore was so emphatic in bringing it out. The idea that conflict and flux seem to be the catalyst of creative vigour seems to hold a kind of ironic and ambivalent fascination for those of us who study this. I don't even know what more to say about it, except to acknowledge the amibvalence again of this observation, which Welles rightly makes so wry and pointedly funny.

I was just struck by this educational program on the BBC, probably tied to the Open University, that dealt with reading - something like how to read through editorial bias. They say things that basically the narrative theorist might say, that in reading a text - a news story in this case, that despite pretences towards objectivity, that the editorial presence is always there, that newspapers are not "the thing itself" - the immediate experience of the act. Talking about strategies of reading, they stress the need to think about intention, of why and for what these things are being written. We're looking for the author, I would say the implied author, since the author would too easily be thought of as the scriptor himself, whereas with newspapers, the more accurate description would be to think of the institutional intention.

Probably the news item that struck me the most from the morning news was the item about this school girl who had run off with this older policeman, known to be her boyfriend of sorts. Articles can be found here. The way they reported it seemed to stress the emergency of it, that they needed to be contacted. That seems a strange way of thinking about it, even though certainly their safety is probably a concern. My imagination posits them as simply a couple run off for the simple "romantic' reason that they wanted to, and all the constitutive reasons that precipitate that. The fact that their car was found at the tip of the island, at the northernmost point when they were nowhere near it, seems to point to a kind of desire for escape, if not simply escapism - a kind of nurturing in the indulgence of romance. All of which makes the rather rational furore around their "almost inexplicable" disappearance seem a kind of repudiation of the legitimacy of that drive, to the extent that they are simply unwilling to be cognisant of that possibility. They wished to visit The Ends of The Earth, is that so strange? En route, and under disguise of attending to the normality of their daily lives, they had made an arrangement, a cunning plan, whose intentions (perhaps they knew?) would be incomprehensible/unacceptable to those immediately around them. I want to condition all of this in case it all turns out badly but can't bring myself to dispel the wondrousness of the gesture that they are engaged in - which hollywood's earnest sentimentality renders so often as a deadened obeisance to idols of spontaneity and the gut wrenching clash with duty and responsibility - trawthe.

Reminds me of "A Chalked Heart" lying on the floor of my room, and of the youngness of the protaganist and the wonder whether I will ever bring myself to speak to her author.

About this Archive

This page is an archive of entries from March 2003 listed from newest to oldest.

February 2003 is the previous archive.

April 2003 is the next archive.

Find recent content on the main index or look in the archives to find all content.

Opera web browser - downloadOpera Mini - Mobile Web Browser