Tuesday, May 31, 2011

€500

We had a housewarming gift from Xfe's parents - €500. Needless to say Xfe put it somewhere inappropriate, and it sat there for months.

Now we can't find it....I think it had been packed away somewhere, or even worse - discarded with the rubbish!

Sunday, May 29, 2011

Those Gangers Get Everywhere

My gangers tell me I shouldn't do things in the kitchen.

Give...



I like to give.

Support where you can.



Sink deep, because hands that do dishes can be soft as your face...

Friday, May 27, 2011

Now The Sabotage Don't Work




Picture says, sabotage
doesn't work.

Yup, it's true. But I say...watch this space.

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Svenska

Holiday bargain alert!!

Last night we booked a mini-break. We're off to Stockholm for 6 days. Flying Club Europe with BA, 5 nights in the Sheraton and it's costing us £192. Spend to save.



We had booked into the Sheraton SoHo in New York and I was on the point of confirming Club World BA flights until I found out the tax and airport charges to fly BA0001 was going to be approx £850. Whilst nothing pleases me more than the thought of flying 8 hours in BA business class, with a bed, £850 doesn't fit in with our age of austerity theme for 2011.

So then we looked at a map to see where we could go. I couldn't get flights to Las Vegas. BA (even on BA Club World) was too far for a mini-break. Istanbul had no availability. So we settled on Stockholm.

In keeping with the age of austerity I'll be buying my booze at the airport to take with me.

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Tena Pants And Ciggies

Tonight it was off to one of my favourite haunts to see the now-time rock grandma and soon to be 70-year old survivor, Marianne Faithful.

Whilst not untuneful, she doesn't do much in the way of vocal variety. Just tanic gravel loud and LOUDER.

Though the pensioners in the audience who lived with her from the 60s to present day probably would be disappointed with anything less.

There's something funny-queer seeing an erstwhile rehab rebel dropping the names of great grand-daddy rockers like Keith Richards, Mick Jagger and Roger Waters whilst coughing up phlegm in-between and wearing tena pants (probably).

Still, I rather enjoyed it.

Monday, May 23, 2011

The Rebel Flesh - Mondas?

So, are we seeing the genesis of the Cybermen in the two-parter The Rebel Flesh and The Almost People?

I think so.

The clues:
  • "Early technology"
  • the design of the acid suit

  • the planet is in our solar system

  • and it looks like Earth


Mondas (according to Wikipedia):

"Mondas is Earth's twin planet, identical down to even the size and shapes of its continents. Millions of years ago, it was the tenth planet of the Solar System, until somehow it drifted out of its orbit and journeyed into deep space. In Mondas' first appearance in the 1966 serial The Tenth Planet, it is stated that "Mondas" is another name for Earth in one of the ancient languages (compare mundo).

What exactly moved Mondas out of its orbit is not known. According to the book Cybermen by Davis Banks it was the arrival of the Moon in orbit around Earth, but the canonicity of this is uncertain. According to the Cybermen themselves, the Mondasians were once exactly like human beings, but to remove various weaknesses such as a decreasing lifespan, their scientists designed cybernetic spare parts to replace the organs of the human body. They also considered emotions a weakness, and removed those from their brains as well, becoming extremely powerful and long-lived while at the cost of becoming cold, logical and machine-like in their ruthlessness. It is unclear if this conversion process arose because of environmental necessity after Mondas left its orbit or for other reasons."

In a comment on an earlier post Matthew Celestis said...
You did not even mention The World Shapers strip, in which Mondas turns out to be Marinus (the planet with the acid sea) and the original Cybermen, the Voord in their acid suits.
and
You knew The World Shapers was by Grant Morrison, so I thought you knew that already.

Of course, I don't think Grant Morrison had actually watched The Keys of Marinus before writing The World Shapers, as the only thing from that story he references is the Voord and the name of the planet.

It does make a lot of sense. A computer governing people, blokes with handlebars on their helmets, a very earth-like planet (apart from the acid sea) and the peculiar fact that the old bloke at the beginning seems to have lived quite a long time (partially cybernised).

Lance Parkin considers Mondas as Marinus to be canonical. Tat Wood and Lawrence Miles dismiss The World Shapers as a bit silly.
So, perhaps, at last, we are going to find out what moved Mondas out of its orbit.

(Though I can't work out why Dusty Springfield would be playing on Mondas, not unless its peoples were identical).

Sunday, May 22, 2011

A Partner Is For Life?

Not just for Christmas!

Gay Banker recently posted on Sharing one's life with a partner:

I recently suggested to a friend that one of the purposes of a gay relationship was to share one's life with someone else. I was surprised to hear his response, which was that to start out with any purpose like that was prejudging what might happen, and hence inviting failure. He seemed to suggest that perhaps the starting point could be love, but nothing beyond that. For straight couples, one of the reasons for a relationship can be to have children, but for gay couples that reason doesn't really apply.

I've written before about how gay relationships should be constructed (1, 2), but those posts were more from the point of view of whether relationships need to be monogamous or not. I think that when I wrote those posts, I was assuming a situation where two gay guys do want to share their lives with each other, so that isn't the issue.

If a gay "relationship" is purely based on sex, then I reckon the two guys are fuckbuddies rather than boyfriends or partners. For two gay guys that call themselves partners, surely the idea of sharing one's life with the other guy is fundamental?
I often think about the nature of relationships. Having had two long-term partners before meeting Xfe, I have a degree of experience.

I agree with GB about sharing lives. But I think the real question is whether this is (or should be) for life.

Which is a different issue.

Living together for life may be what people (gay or straight) aspire to, but why do they aspire to it? Perhaps because it is seen as the "social norm". What people do.

But when those norms are based on, say, morality or aspirational values, are they realistic?

Do we then aspire to something that is not consistent with our natural selves, or nature?

The seven year itch. It seems to me that tag exists because a relationship runs a natural course, far less than life. On average, perhaps 7 years.

Certainly having children is a reason why couples are encouraged to stay together through thick and thin. To protect and provide. Sometimes when things are falling apart the children are the glue, the reason to make the relationship work.

So, people do. And we see it as the norm, something to aspire to.

The Working Week

Work has been full-on over recent weeks.

Almost two and a half years ago, when the credit crunch first started to make an impact here we suffered redundancies. Then about six months later, another round. That left us about a third less in our department than we originally were.

Now that things have been busier, much busier, for some time now we are more than creaking from the seams. There is no space capacity to deal with small - minor stuff; and the more complex projects need to be juggled.

Although the weeks fly by, they are incredibly busy and full of stress.

I start to feel the looming dread of Monday's arrival on the Sunday. Watching the clock, counting the hours. During the week the quality of sleep is poor. I wake up 2.30am and drift in and out of sleep. I am fairly awake at 5am, and by 7am I'm on my way to the office.

By the evening I have little energy or concentration, so I leave the office around 8.30pm-9pm, come home and get off to bed before 10pm if possible.

On Friday night/Saturday morning I woke up around 3.30am. I was not stressed, but felt too tired to sleep. Is there such a thing? My eyes were sore with fatigue, but I had to get up, to avoid stressing about not sleeping. I was back in bed around 6am.

When I am working like this I do like to take full advantage of the weekend and cram as much in, and as much relaxation.

Saturday, May 21, 2011

Early Technology

The Rebel Flesh.

I think we are on Mondas. (Didn't the planet at the beginning look rather like the Earth - Mondas is our twin planet).

Early technology... Replacing limbs, body parts, but the Flesh was the early technology.

The Cyberman shell perhaps serving the evolved function of the acid suit?



"Early technology".

I recently blogged about the creation of the Cybermen according to Target.

Might the acid suits become the Cybermen body casing? There may well be a clue in the design...

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

IDris - And The Cybermen Conspiracy?

Elsewhere I had speculated that Gaiman's Who episode involved the ID of the TARDIS (hence IDris). It was explicit, though sometimes explicit is far from obvious.

Id

The id comprises the unorganised part of the personality structure that contains the basic drives.

The id is unconscious by definition:

"It is the dark, inaccessible part of our personality, what little we know of it we have learned from our study of the dream-work and of the construction of neurotic symptoms, and most of that is of a negative character and can be described only as a contrast to the ego. We approach the id with analogies: we call it a chaos, a cauldron full of seething excitations... It is filled with energy reaching it from the instincts, but it has no organisation, produces no collective will, but only a striving to bring about the satisfaction of the instinctual needs subject to the observance of the pleasure principle."

In the id,

"contrary impulses exist side by side, without cancelling each other out....There is nothing in the id that could be compared with negation...nothing in the id which corresponds to the idea of time."

Developmentally, the id is anterior to the ego; i.e. the psychic apparatus begins, at birth, as an undifferentiated id, part of which then develops into a structured ego. Thus, the id:

"...contains everything that is inherited, that is present at birth, is laid down in the constitution — above all, therefore, the instincts, which originate from the somatic organisation, and which find a first psychical expression here (in the id) in forms unknown to us."
In the meantime, lets examine the Cybermen.

We have already had the Silence (plural - Silents).

Can you fit their face into a Cyberman mask? Or rather, if you peel the mask away, what might you find underneath...?



My 1980 re-print of the 1976 Target Book of Doctor Who And The Tenth Planet has a prequel - The Creation of the Cybermen.

Centuries ago by our Earth time, a race of men on the far-distant planet of Telos sough immortality. They perfected the art of cybernetics - the reproduction of machine functions in human beings. As bodies became old and diseased, they were replaced limb by limb, with plastic and steel.

....

Their main impediment was one that only flesh and blood men would have recognised; they had no heat, no emotions, no feelings.

....

They achieved immortality at a terrible price. They became dehumanised monsters. And, like the human monsters down through all the ages of Earth, they became aware of the lack of love and feeling in their lives and substituted another goal - power!
Auntie and Uncle are made up of parts when in need of replacement. House renewed their parts for them. Replaced, when done.

["As bodies became old and diseased, they were replaced..."]

The Rebel Flesh

Flesh working. Flesh on flesh. Replace the human part...

The Moonbase

Novelised as Doctor Who and the Cybermen (I have the 1976 reprint of the 1974 Target original).

Prologue: The Creation of the Cybermen

Centuries ago by our Earth time, a race of men on the far distant planet of Telos sought immortality. They perfected the art of cybernetics - the reproduction of machine functions in human beings. As bodies became old and diseases, they were replaced limb by limb, with plastic and steel.
The Age of Steel.

So, will there be Cybermen? It does seem that there is at least a bit of a theme running.

But might series 6 turn out to be all about them?

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Tagine, And Sabotage

I have, for the best part of 24 hours, been massaging the meat that is lamb, for a delicious tagine. I hope.

Let me tell you, we do have a very sexy butcher. The rest are minging, but one is truly H.O.T. Well, at least I think he is.

So, recipe says bathe the meat in spices overnight. Hence last night's pasta. But tonight...Mmm, smells delicious (while slow cooking).

In the meantime. We went to Alexandra Palace Garden Centre today. Whoopee, wow! SO much to choose from. We spent over the ton again. But how worth it.

Last night I dreamed our neighbour told me it would be OK to cut down this plant if we preferred. It has been "bugging" me for 48 hours or so. The plant, not the dream.

So I did it. In the best Hammer House of Horror dream/reality dichotomy I took my mini-saw to the roots. Sliced through. Watch it die. And how I know nothing about it. (But if it becomes an issue I can simply pay them off - in kind, or preferably, in cash).

I am not a nice person - but you knew that, right?

Friday, May 13, 2011

Fairy Tale Dreams Come Tru

Where did those Royals get their inspiration?

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Kruse On The Rude Tube

On the 5th May there may well have been a suspect package deposited on the Central Line, a looming spectre suggesting revenge terrorist attack, following on from Obama's taking out Bin Laden.

But on that morning the suspect package that confronted me on London's Underground was even more dangerous.

I'm often, actually frequently, cruised on the tube. I guess I have a certain :heir: about me. I put it down to wearing a suit. A rather nice one (for each day). One that stirs the parts other suits fail to reach. Not that I'm looking for anything. It just helps the journeys pass quicker and distracts from the horror of work to follow.

On Thursday I entered the carriage as normal. So did a guy who looked a little like Joey Essex, but far better looking. Anyway, it wasn't him (as if I would). It was some guy with a few piercings and a bit of facial hair. Not my thing, but take the beard away and he was incredibly handsome.

He kept catching my eye.

As seats became available he moved closes to me.

I saw him slowly licking his lips.

I opened my second top shirt button, just to flirt.

He touched himself.

He moved closer.

I turned away (not to be obvious).

He pushed against me.

He pushed against me.

I did nothing.

He pushed against me.

I turned round, stared at him and rubbed just below my neck, exposing my chest hair.

I turned around.

I felt his excitement.

I heard him whisper "piss" and "mouth".

Mine or his?

I alighted at the next stop, minding the gap.

Wednesday, May 04, 2011

The Wedding

So, we had a party for the wedding. A street party in the garden.

We had plenty of bunting and stuff - in the garden and in the house.



We had some Pimms as well - the most delicious of summer drinks.

As you know, we don't go in for half measures. Here was my glass of Pimms... A tad oversized you might say. But simply delicious!



(that is a 1-litre bottle of Pimms)

Sunday, May 01, 2011

Celebrating Le Marriage

I'm guessing this won't make it into the official photo album...

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