Item: Jennie put on Would I Lie To You, and the female panellist reveals she lied repeatedly to her husband before they married.

Jennie: Why did he marry her then?
Me: Jennie? She's Keeley Hawes.
(Jennie then went on to wonder why she felt the need to lie, but that's a Serious Topic)

Item: I am a listed here: Brighouse Ward: Statement of persons nominated: Calderdale Council, yes, that is the ward I actually live in, and yes, I'm actually running seriously to try to win. Last minute unplanned nomination, but that doesn't change that I could do it and would like to. This does of course mean that I'll need to be posting some 'local news' stuff over the next few weeks, as that'll be stuff I'll be concentrating on. And having spent years building up the Google presence for my name, ought to actually make use of it.

Item: Livejournal has for the best part of the last week been under a massive, sustained DDOS attack. It appears to be politically motivated from within Russia. This does of course highlight the need, if you care about such things, to backup your journal somewhere, either on your own machine or elsewhere online. I like that I've got two homes that are interoperable for my writing; if you haven't got a DW account & don't want to pay for one, I have a number of invite codes spare--I need an email address to send them to, feel free to comment or email me (

Item: At the gym recently, Jennie watched an episode of Doctors, partially. It had Colin Baker in it. She didn't see all of it, so is now inflicting it on me. It has some reasonable actors and acting in it. Shame about the script, plot, etc...
Why is it, when you've got loads of stuff to do, there's loads of interest in the news and on t'telly, that your body throws a stinking headcold at you that doesn't affect your physical abilities at all but completely messes up your brain's ability to think?

I'm trying to put the finishing touches to a blog redesign for a friend who's actually going to pay me good, solid money. Can I concentrate on it for long enough to actually, y'know, type a line of code?

Can I buggery.

The Prime Minister has finally gone and called the General Election, so it's 4 weeks and 2 days until we all get to go to the polls (or not, according to preference), and after that the really interesting stuff starts. Can I get my head into the right space to write about it? Dinnae be daft.

I'm the election agent for three local council candidates as well as having my own campaign to run in the 4th local seat. Spent the best part of yesterday out delivering, have a new leaflet to write and send to the organiser. Except my brain won't concentrate for long enough. On top of that I have loads of volunteers to help organise (seriously, we've got more local volunteers than the Tories have, how cool is that?), but I can't even type their email addresses properly.

Still, at least I've managed to write a post for t'blog. There's a reasonable chance that this may continue. There's also a good chance I'll keep using Twitter a lot over the next few weeks; I've got a new phone with a decent internet access y'see.

So, anyone want to come to Yorkshire and help me get my brain working?
So, most of you will have noticed that since moving in with Miss Spammy Pants I'm posting a lot less, but she's still posting lots. Now, of course, any good blogger gives away a fair bit of themselves in the persona that they blog with, but it's not the whole picture. So I thought some of you might like to know other aspects of what she's like.

Well, those of you that know me know that, well, mornings? Not really my thing. At all. Never thought I'd ever meet someone palpably worse than me. Until I moved in with her.

She's worse than me. Really, lots lots worse )

Love you darlin.
So, having been regularly getting books out from the local library[1], I was tempted to try the "classic" Heinlein that I'd never read. It's recommended in the Guardian's 1000 books list, the only one of his works, and as I've enjoyed[2] many of his other books, even those dated, I finally got around to taking it out and trying to read it.

It's the revised 'preferred' version, so it's long for a Heinlein and, apart from the obvious not aged very well problem, it seems to suffer in some way. I'm not, actually, enjoying it. I'm about 1/3rd of the way in for those interested. So I thought I'd ask you guys what you think of him and the book.
[Poll #1340941]
[1] The only books by [ profile] autopope that I haven't yet read are currently waiting for me to go pick them up. If you're not sure, let Crooked Timber explain Why you should read Charles Stross as part of their Stross book event which I linked to earlier in the week but perhaps didn't push enough. I've not had time to read all of it yet, but what I have read is cool. Especially the Nobel Laureate geeking about the parallel worlds fantasy books...

[2] I read Citizen of the Galaxy and I think a couple others as a teen, and enjoyed what I can remember, I mean to reread at some point. I've read Starship Troopers both as a teen and an adult, and find it a great fun entertaining book with some dodgy politics; I'm one of those rare beasts that prefers the film because of the politics, even if Verhoeven did mess that up quite a bit. Farnham's Freehold is, however, a bit of pulpy trash best consigned to the dustbin of outdated books.
Before I start wading through loads of links, searches and similar, is there out there somewhere a simple guide on petitioning for a town council referendum? Brighouse is part of Calderdale Metropolitan Borough, but several local towns also have their own town council.

Not my area of expertise (yet) )
Went to the Halifax cabinet meeting, got a result, yay! )
And there'd be a lot of support for something I wanted to campaign for anyway )
Any other stuff people know'd be cool )
So, today, we did go to the Library. It was shut for renovations most of the summer so I couldn't register, but it's now reopened. It is a typical small English town library, gifted to the town by the effective founder, and has an attached art gallery. It's gorgeous.

I registered (painless process all on computer), but forgot to ask how many books I'd be allowed. Given that when I grew up in Devon it was 4, Exeter uni was I think 6, and Merton in Wimbledon was similar, while browsing I chose a pile, then put several back on the shelves.

When checking out, I did ask the question. 20.

You can take out 20 books at once

Plus it's a gorgeous building, in a nice park setting, and it's less'n ten minutes walk. I need to remember to return my books on time and not get banned from this library. Plus, as SB discovered, they seem to have a complete set of Asterix books. Shrub's likely a little young for them. Probably. Anyway...
[Poll #1286302]
I did see it on the shelf, and made her take it out to read. Pretty sure I leant [ profile] susannah_banana my copy, else I'd have put it top of her pile already.

Shrub's already read the two books she took out. Which means given it's half term I might have to take her back for more. What a shame. I'll have to force myself.
I've mentioned the Fantastic Films Weekend a few times recently, but today the National Media Museum put the new website live so we have some details:
This year the line-up includes the Tarantino/Rodriguez Grindhouse double-bill, the ultimate Cushing/Lee pairing in Dracula, Daughters of Darkness, Eyes without a Face, Blood on Satan’s Claw and John Carpenter’s The Thing in 70mm with an exclusive video introduction from Carpenter himself. Our guests will be cult filmmakers Harry Kümel, Peter Duffell, Piers Haggard and Robert Fuest.
Now, I'm not a massive horror film fan (because most horror films don't involve space ships), but I can appreciate a good flick, and the normal selection they've had has been brilliant, last year included Soylent Green, 300 on the IMAX, a showing of Ghostwatch and Forbidden Planet. So that's some proper SF, some decent horror, some weird FX driven stuff and SPARTA!

It's a really cool venue in Bradford, just a few minutes walk from Bradford Interchange bus and rail station, incredibly easy to get to. Especially from our house, the 363 takes 20 minutes from the end of our street. So that's:

7th Fantastic Films Weekend runs from Friday 13 to Sunday 15 June

Admit it, you're interested. And you want to come. You can even throw in a visit to sunny Brighouse and see where I live and everything.

And, honestly? Bradford's actually quite a nice place as well. Honest. Or you could do what some of the British Horror Forum regulars are doing (including [ profile] pmoodie?), and stay in the hotel down the road from us because it's dead cheap and really nice. And they probably won't bite. Unless you're into that sort of thing. And I know you lot, some of you are...
What have I let myself in for? As of 15.50GMT today there were 113 flood warnings in the country. 60 of these were in West Yorkshire and 6 of them are in our little bit. Our local paper says: Brighouse submerged under torrent of water. Even the canal has burst its banks, flooding several local places of interest including the basement of Jennie's pub.  She'll be posting about that later I suspect, she's home safe now thanks to an ingenious bus driver.  I have some pictures I might be able to upload later (I can't find the cable in the still-packed boxes), so here are some from the local paper instead:

Pictures gratuitously borrowed from the Courier website )
Don't get floods like this around my part of the country much. No rivers or canals may possibly explain that though. Fun fun...
A note to the local paper )
  • 14:12 leaving London and thus no longer a Londoner. And no longer a car owner either. Goodbye Peaugeot, rust in peace #
  • 14:39 amused at the tomtom. When it says 'ahead, keep right' it means don't take the junction, stay on the motorway, you're stuck on it for ag ... #
  • 16:34 entering Nottinghamshire and wondering why they've got a sign saying Robin Hood County when his grave is just outside Brighouse. #

Look, it's better than me texting LJ directly when I'm bored, right? Plus, y'know, microblogging, it's all the rage donchaknow. LoudTwitter
On this whole 'moving in with Jennie and moving to Yorkshire thing'[1]? It is, unfortunately, too late to change my mind. Look what I just found out:
Embrace are an English guitar rock band from Brighouse
Gotta love Mitch (2:13 in for the reference)
[1] By the way, I may've forgotten to mention this, I handed my notice in to my landlord last week, I'm moving in formally on Jan 3rd. Just, y'know, for the record.
matgb: Artwork of 19th century upper class anarchist, text: MatGB (Default)

British Liberal, house husband, school play leader and stepdad. Campaigner, atheistic feminist, amateur baker. Male.

Known to post items of interest on occasions. More likely to link to interesting stuff. Sometimes talks about stuff he's done. Occasionally posts recipes for good food. Planning to get married, at some point. Enjoying life in Yorkshire.

Likes comments. Especially likes links. Loves to know where people came from and what they were looking for. Mostly posts everything publicly. Sometimes doesn't. Hi.

Mat Bowles

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October 2015


Stuff and nonsense

I'm the Chair of the Brighouse branch of the Liberal Democrats.

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