July 2010 Archives
Today we went along with DC to see Not the Messiah.
This one wasn't as much fun as Spamalot, but the orchestra and chorus were nice and it had enough fun bits in it.
My biggest gripe was actually the sound quality. Whether it was the mixing of the original recording or the crap sound system of the Dodgy Dendy I don't know. All I know is the soloists were often drowned out by the chorus and/or orchestra which made the whole thing that much harder to concentrate on.
Aside from the basics of the story, with some of the original jokes and references to other Monty Python sketches (go the Lumberjacks!!) it was mostly just new songs that I didn't know, so wasn't as much fun to get into.
Funniest moment by far: Terry Gilliam's scene :)
Last night (I think because it was Friday and I didn't feel like doing anything else) I went on a mission to find a good panorama creator. I've used PanaVue (from 2000) in the past but it's slow and clunky and a manual process to line up pixels. So thought there must be a better way. A quick LifeHacker search later led me to Microsoft Image Composite Editor.
And it just works!
You drag images you want to merge into it, and it automagically creates panoramas with no fuss and does a pretty decent job of it too (except with water - where it sort of draws a straight line down where it can't match. This could maybe be done better by trying to smoosh the water a bit, but in the grand scheme of things, it's not too bad).
In a few hours I created 33 panoramas from pictures taken mostly this year, and 53 from our Europe trip.
This morning I did 17 from our Japan trip. The best ones of these are on the Japan blog. Check them out!
More will end up on conspiracy eventually, but here's one from our Melbourne trip.
Just a few pictures of the storm clouds taken before and after rollerblading on Saturday (iPhone crappy camera)
Saturday arvo Potty smsed me to see if I'd like to go roller blading down at the lake. So wandered over their place and we all headed down.
I haven't bladed in several years now (may have gone once since I met Stu, but can't remember - last blog occurrence was 2004). And my blades are about fourteen years old (got em in 1996 I think). So I'd just put them on when one of the plastic straps snapped. And shortly after the one on the other side did too - doh!! So will have to see if I can get replacement straps.
So Kerry walked Violet trying to get her to go to sleep, and Potty and I chased Jake around. Apart from lots of loose stones, it's a very nice smooth place to rollerblade. We decided we definitely need to do it more often.
(cool rainbow, and funky iPhone motion skew)
DC is on a bit of a get-fit-before-his-next-big-bike-ride, so we decided to walk up Black Mountain today.
I forgot to turn on the GPS until part way through the Botanic Gardens. The timing was something like:
11:30 - start of track (which was half way up through the gardens)
12:15 - arrival at summit (delayed by a bit cause we missed the turn off to the summit track and had to backtrack in the gardens)
12:34 - start back down
13:05 - approximate arrival back at above starting point
13:25 - arrival cafe after walking through the rainforest bit of the gardens
The GPS track is not 100% accurate but not too bad...
After we got back down we stopped for lunch in the cafe. The magpies and choughs making a killing on leftovers (especially the magpies)
Was a good day.
Thursday morning (1st July) we had a bit of a sleep in. An hour before we had to leave I thought I'd better pack heh. Left on time and arrived at the airport with plenty of time to spare.
We had an Embraer E190 which is one of the smallest commercial jets flying. Two seats each side of the aisle. And surrounded by screaming kids. Yay. So a very noisy trip. And no music to listen to either - no headphone sockets. There was cloud cover over Eastern Australia so didn't have much of a view so ended up just reading the Virgin Blue magazine which kept me occupied the whole trip.
Our Embraer E-190
This sticky tape on the wing tip was a little disturbing
Interior of the E-190
Brisbane Air Traffic Control Tower
Arrived just before 2pm and went and picked up our hire care. Took the scenic route through Brisbane so we could drive past Stu's old flat. There's so many new bridges and tunnels here now it was a little bit freaky!
New overpass being built near the airport
Stu's old flat
Go Between Bridge - opening the next Monday
Got to Chay and David's around 3pm and then we chatted for ages before going on a booze run. Had beer and ordered pizza and ended up watching V for Vendetta. Then the others went to bed and David and I stayed up til a bit after 1am Singstarring.
Friday had a huge sleep in (10:30!!) and got to up to find we'd kept everyone awake :( Decided to go out for coffee and shopping. Went down to the lake for coffee and other drinks. Then went to the Orion shopping centre. I got a couple of Singstars for $20 each. One of these days we'll have to get a Playstation... Had a look in BigW at Lego prices and wandered round looking at other things too. Had a sushi snack. Looked in the Reject Shop. Then did some food shopping in Woollies. Got home at 15:45 oops :)
Boats being raced on the lake
Kailyn on a mall ride
Feeding the guinea pigs
So David and Daemon cooked a roast chicken for dinner which was highly nom. Started watching The Backup Plan but lost interest in that and ended up just playing Mario Kart and then some Singstar til midnight.
Saturday had another reasonable sleep in. Went out with Chay to a few garage sales so she could look for books, but they were all pretty crap. Mostly clothes.
Feeding the guinea pigs again
Played through the 50cc Mario Kart cups to unlock all the locked ones for them then played a few rounds with the kids.
Chay made a fantastic lasagna for dinner - better than any of the lasagnas I've ever made.
Then we went out and saw Toy Story 3 which was pretty awesome but a bit dark for a G rating I thought. Came back then played some Buzz. First the general one which I was an epic loser at, then the music one which I was still a bit crap at but at least the scores were a lot closer. Then the others went to bed and David and I stayed up and did a couple of ten-course Mario Kart cups.
Sunday we got up at a more normal time, dropped Kailyn off at a friend's place and the four of us grown-ups went to breakfast at Ascot Provisions (Stu got random breath tested on the way which was a bit.. random). I tried the "breakfast pizza" because its toppings of cheese kransky, hashbrowns, cheese, egg and onion relish intrigued me. It was pretty good actually :)
Clem 7 Tunnel
Breakfast pizza at Ascot provisions
Next we headed to South Bank. Went on a bit if a scenic tour if Brisbane cause we didn't have a real GPS but even if we did, so much has changed recently it probably wouldn't have worked anyway. So we got there and managed to find parking in one of the parking stations. Unfortunately it's a flat rate $15 which is a bit rude if you only plan to be there for a couple of hours :(
Victoria Bridge, Brisbane
Anyway, wandered our way past a Scottish festival and up to the Gallery of Modern Art (GoMA) to see the Ron Mueck exhibition. It was pretty awesome, I'll post pics in a separate post.
We were all pretty tired and peopled out at this point so headed for home (via a short detour past The Jazzy Cat Cafe where I first met Stu five years ago but it wasn't there anymore!)
David and I went and picked up Kailyn and then to Coles for supplies. Came back and reheated the leftover lasagne with some pan bread and we made up a salad too. Watched Merlin and then Waynes World (party time, excellent) which the kids didn't appreciate nearly enough ;) Played some Mario Kart then some Singstar Eighties.
We dressed up Wallace in Kailyn's clothes
Monday morning Chay cooked up a pretty awesome breakfast of bacon, tomatoes and cheese, spaghetti and toast. Then we played a little Mario Kart before packing up our stuff and saying goodbye.
Gateway Bridge(s) (didn't realise a second one had opened earlier this year)
Returned the rental car to the airport then caught the first of two planes of the afternoon. Was a bit bummed that our seats were over the wing (I couldn't get anything further back - looks like a young sporting team had already booked out most of the back of the plane). Then someone from my old job said "Karen" and then just stared at me. Most awkward. I of course was a bit thrown, and she wasn't any help reminding me who she was. Hrmmmmm. People. They suck sometimes.
View of a wing, and the Brisbane River
Sydney Harbour Bridge
Had a snack in the Qantas Lounge in Sydney but the creamy sauce I put on my salad was actually really really hot horseradish. Hurt my mouth :( Sigh.
Last plane home was a 737 and we were right near the back, but it was too dark for photos. And the flight was so short that they'd only just come round with snacks/drinks before we had to put up our tray tables. Oops. In the end I brought the little bottle of wine home unopened.
These beetroot chips were cool, but they make your poo purple - which is pretty darned freaky!
So had a really nice trip. It was very relaxing and *warm*!! Winter is definitely the time to visit Brisbane! Really not looking forward to going back to work tomorrow though.. The stress is a little bit ridiculous at the moment....
End of another week. After the last project was finally released last weekend, here I was thinking I'd have time to do all the other crap I've been neglecting. No such luck. Just as busy as ever (with all the crap).
Walked home with TonyH today. Skin on the balls of my feet hurts now though :(
Looking forward to the weekend that's for sure.
Tonight we went out for dinner with Damien and Amanda. Went to the Dumpling Inn and had lots of yummy food and talked about all sorts of vitally important things. TV (Amazing Race, Masterchef etc), travel (their plans and urs), politics (boring hehe). Was a good night :)
One of the jigsaws the parents started while they were here and that I finished was labelled "Switzerland".
Now remember people I have a weirdly obsessive brain. I had to know where this photo was taken. So out with Google Earth. Took circling five lakes before I found it. It's Spiez on Thunersee. The sad thing is, if they'd just angled the photo a bit better, they could have gotten the Swiss alps in it too..
Anyways. Really terrible jigsaw in that they obviously hadn't sharpened the cutters any time recently, so the pieces were butchered and it was hard to tell if they actually went together at all. I was expecting the lake to be impossible to do, but actually it wasn't so bad. Funny repeating pattern too which I discovered right at the end.
So James and George and various kids decided to go to Questacon today. They smsed us on the way to see if we wanted to go to dinner after. So we did :)
Was lovely to catch up with them. Went to Bella Vista where much nommage was had.
And then they went home. Hope they make it home safely.. very long day!
And just cause Fiona did it, and because I also have webalizer ... webalizer's version of my search term referrals..
Haven't done any real photo sorting in weeks. I started pulling out photos for the Queensland trip but didn't get very far through it.
Very quiet weekend. Did shopping Saturday morning and work Saturday arvo. Cooked a roast chicken for dinner. Did a whole lot of nothing on Sunday. Did got for a nice walk. Stu cooked dinner.
Tonight I read news feeds and closed browser windows. Which meant I didn't actually get any UK planning done :(
Other than that I got nothing.
Other than this photo of clouds rolling over Mt Ainslie, taken several weeks ago.
Yesterday arvo, Nat invited us to go see The Kung Fu Kid (yeah yeah I know it's *actually* called The Karate Kid). Had to convince the sweetie, and I almost didn't see the end of the Twitter conversation and nearly walked home.
So I got to see Nat's new office, then we picked up the sweetie and headed for the cinema.
Got the worst seats ever - right on the side in the front row :(:( Was pretty uncomfortable. I think the only other time I've had seats that bad was for Back to the Future III (I think).
I'm not sure that the others were too convinced, but I actually really enjoyed it. I mean.. it's a remake, so you know generally how it's going to play out, but the execution was still pretty good. And some of the scenery was just spectacular (some of it - the mountains - I've wanted to see for a long time). James Horner's score was a nice mix of regular classical with eastern music as well. Was actually quite surprised by the low ranking it's got on IMDB.
Then we went to Happy's for a late dinner (we felt like Chinese after all heh).
Thanks Nat, was a good night :)
While we were in Queensland, we all went and saw Toy Story 3.
It was pretty awesome!!
Although it was pretty easy to tell the bad guy the minute he came on screen heh.
We decided not to see it in 3D. None of us are that convinced by it. Stu gets a headache. I think it dulls down the picture too much. Really, we're so used to 2D that 3D doesn't really add that much.
It's pretty cool that the kid who played Andy was the same kid, all grown up. The original Toy Story was fifteen years ago!!! Not even Daemon was born when the first one came out heh.
There was even a Totoro!
Pixar have certainly done it again with this movie, well done!
Almost TUA (Totally Unrelated Aside):
There's a line in one of the movies (I can't actually remember which, I think it was 2) that has a character (Stinky Pete?) questioning Woody about whether he would be still there when Andy grew up - would he be taken on Andy's honeymoon? The tragic thing is, if I'd actually remembered (I was kicking myself that I forgot) I would actually have taken my favourite childhood toy on my honeymoon. I did take her to Japan last year. She's on the packing list for the next trip hehe.
The parents headed off this morning, their plan being to go to Mogo Zoo. Looks like they had a much better day for it than we did last time we went. Here's some of Stu's photos of our day at Mogo Zoo, as promised six months ago...
Haven't done one of these in forever..
Dickens :: Charles Collection :: coin Weekends :: freedom Travel :: UK District :: Peaks Vampires :: sayers Peep show :: blink Crochet :: needle Lion :: mane Fetch :: dog
This morning the parents headed off to church so I did some UK planning and Stu did some sleeping and some uni work.
Lunch was an instant meal of an instant pasta sauce, a tin of tuna, tomato and peas and corn.
Looked through the parents UK photos from last year.
Then set the dinner on to cook.
And played lots of Wii.
Played more Wii.
Now it's bed time yes?
So the parents came down for the weekend today. They called earlier in the week and said they'd be down "after lunch" and that they might drop in on the little brother and if they did they'd call from there.
Well anyway, "after lunch" came and went and no sign of the parents. I eventually called the little brother to see if they'd been there, but they were out so hadn't seen them.
So by 3pm I was pretty annoyed that they hadn't called. We'd been waiting around for hours.
They eventually turned up, but I was stuck monitoring a rollout that was quite fail. The parents entertained themselves with a couple of jigsaws.
Eventually they called it, so we all went off to Dickson for dinner. Went to that all you can eat place. It was *packed*. The roast pork and beef were really nice and the lasagne not bad, but most of the rest of the food was a bit meh. Biggest problem I ate so much meat it's just sitting in my stomach. The smell of my burps is making me a little queasy actually. Really shouldn't eat so much meat anymore...
(oh yeah, and they never closed the door when they came in, so we went out to dinner with the front door and screen door open.. hurrah)
I'll put it out there. I F@#$%ING HATE RETWEETS!!!!! The ones that have some random showing up in my Twitter timeline.. I F@#%ing hate it@!!!!! I've Googled ways to try and stop it but they all say just go to a user, find the retweet icon for them and click it... but this icon doesn't exist!!! Why has Twitter removed this??? Am I just looking in the wrong place?????
I've already unfollowed a few people for retweeting and just followed the RSS feed instead (which doesn't have retweets in it). The catch is the people that are private I have no choice with, or you see all the one-sided conversational tweets they post which are almost as useless.
EPIC TWITTER FAIL!!!!!
Between dinner, Masterchef and Lie to Me, and a bit of UK planning, I still haven't sorted out photos from the weekend ..
I was going to post some Queensland stuff, but after putting washing away, doing another load of washing, making up the spare room bed, having dinner, watching two episodes of Masterchef, running the dishwasher and doing some UK planning, it's suddenly very late.
Really not looking forward to the next week and a bit. Stress at work, work on the weekend, the parents coming this weekend, as well as being on call til next Thursday means no real downtime (aside from the obvious "down" time). I don't like that.
Home now after five days in Queensland visiting Chay and David. Had a great trip, and when I get the energy I might even blog about it heh..