Showing posts from April, 2010

The post you've been waiting for!

It's not often I use exclamation marks. I hate them - after all, if you can't structure an exciting enough sentence without the use of this assault on the English language then you shouldn't be using any punctuation at all. Today's post does warrant just a single mark, so a single mark you're getting.
Yes. For the first time in my life I am in the USofA typing whilst I sit at a rather nice desk in the hotel room
Skype has failed me as Hannah can't seem to contact me - she briefly appeared, and then disappeared - so I assume it's just a load of cack, however, here is the first couple of days' adventures in the USA told in a style as approved and created by ME.
Day 1... 4:00am rise - and I certainly wasn't built to get up at that time. I awoke, bleary eyed in Guy's lounge after having spent the night on a futon listening to the gas fire pilot light hissing and Dave Albone snoring (not too loudly - I will save him that embarrassment). I did wat…

Clear skies ahead... oh and Group 4...

So the latest ash cloud worries turn out to have been what essentially amounts to a massive over-reaction. Well... I hate to say I told you so...
It turns out the weather computer predictions showing massive swathes of ash all over Europe might have had the concentrations set a bit strong... you're telling me!
Well, all is settling down, the skies are open, and planes are moving across them leaving those contrails that as an astronomer I usually hate, but as a would be transatlantic traveller I'm quite liking them. It's strange how your perception changes...
On 1st May the big event happens... months of planning... rehearsing... and building up to it. Nearly dashed at the last hurdle by a bloody Icelandic volcano, but luckily, saved by a change in wind and a change of policy.
I'm recording tomorrow night - I think I'm going to do the bass lines for TIC. I've had a listen to it with real drums and I think I have a general idea of what's got to happen for a lot o…
I've had a strange weekend. Checking the state of the skies occasionally, and worrying slightly about the forthcoming and impending trip to the USA to play RoSfest - more as a worry to poor George Roldan and the team over at RoSfest who must be cacking kidneys right now - the flight ban would affect around 50% of bands playing the festival, as well as a number of punters who I know are travelling from Europe to be there.
I'm sure it will clear or flights will be allowed with conditions (possibly lower flying and slower speeds) as the possibility of 10 or more days of no flights is frightening.
We have our flight booked - and as far as I know nothing can affect that. They can't just "oversell" planes like they can trains because after all, you have to have a seat on a plane - it's just... well.. the law. Could you imagine Virgin Atlantic planes with people standing in the aisles? I shudder to think how bad that could be.
I've checked out my seat details - and…

Earth shows her teeth

The spectacle of a continent being born is magnificent, however, as someone who is intending to cross the Atlantic in less that a fortnight I'm hoping the volcanic activity in Iceland settles down and the ash stops being blown high into the stratosphere.
No flight have passed through European airspace now for a couple of days, and it doesn't look set to improve any time soon, especially with the calm weather we're having right now, and the winds coming from Iceland's general direction.

Perhaps someone could go and plop a big Alka Seltzer in the volcanic crater?

Group 4 park like dicks.

A blanket statement, you may think, but actually - judging by the three examples below captured within a very short period they need to prove otherwise. I am currently drawing a blank G4S over these. I emailed requesting they notify their drivers that this sort of parking and just abandoning their vehicles is not acceptable - the first of which is an offence liable to land the driver with a £60 fine and 3 points on their licence - and I have had a response, but the follow up email hasn't happened.

I don't know if they are like this all over the country, but it seems our South Yorkshire drivers are just dicks.

Hillsborough, Sheffield - Zig Zags adjacent crossing

Bolton-on-Dearne - G4S van parked across entrance
Fenton Road, Rotherham - Disabled Space

Who keeps breaking the kitchen?

Who keeps breaking the kitchen?
Originally uploaded by Last Human Gateway We were wondering why parts of the plinth in the kitchen kept coming away.

We now found the answer... it's a cat thing.
In the news this week...
First it appears I have something called "Post Nasal Dripping". It sounds gross, that's because it is. Apparently flu, colds, hayfever etc. can set it off and it's only controllable and curable with long term decongestant treatments. Basically - I'm off the coffees for a few weeks :-(
The weekend was good too - I was in retro heaven! - Hannah booked a surprise day out for me at a retro gaming fair for a very early Birthday present - a fair where I could spend hours playing classic 80's 8 bit games. I did... I finished Manic Miner (including my least favourite level The Solar Power Generator) - and found a fair crowd had assembled behind me whilst I did it!

22 days to RoSfest... ooooohhh getting close now!

In three weeks from now I will be on my way to Leeds on the very first leg of my journey to RoSfest. It will, of course, be blogged and documented here (WIFI availability permitting) and the run-up will also be blogged.
Last night I laid down some bass for Charlestown (the epic 36 minuter from the new album). Amazingly, in 4 hours I managed just 5 minutes of bass - there really is that much to it, but I did manage to get through the entire introduction and the first section of the song and into the second section (where Taurus takes over from me for a while).
Tomorrow I will be buying an extra catch for my flightcase and fitting it - the flightcase is good, but I think three catches (one near the handle) will be better as the problem with flightcases without the centre catch is that if you yank the handle very hard you can pull the top of the case apart. I've had experience of this happening once before... I'm not sure where to get the catch from - perhaps B&Q?
Between us we&…

Bank Holidays... days unlike any other

I have noticed a few things you only see on bank holidays, particularly on our Motorway network:
1. Middle lane owners - yeah, I know - you get these all the time... but they're WORSE on bank holidays.
2. Breakdowns - on our way to Kenilworth and back we counted in excess of 15 broken down vehicles each way. I guess this is the old "holiday" syndrome - a car usually used for the school run and Tescos is expected to go 300-400 miles, usually with no servicing at all.
3. Speeders - not your normal run of the mill 90mph speeders, no these are a special breed. The people who don't understand how SPECS cameras work and drive at 70mph through the 50mph limit in the roadworks between M1 junctions 28 and 25... braking hard and slowing down to pass through each camera... I assume, so the cameras can get a clearer picture of you at lower speed so the ticket you've just received has more chance of success if passed on to courts. Do these people not understand what an average i…

The human race is shit.

Inconsiderate Parking... OWND!
Originally uploaded by Last Human Gateway I have very little faith in many human beings after a visit to Sheffield today.

Firstly my parking at Meadowhall - an inconsiderate driver decided that it was acceptable to park overlapping an adjacent space. There is no excuse for this. If you can't fit your vehicle within the lines you shouldn't be driving it. Period.

I used to drive a 3.5 tonne luton box van. I could get it into any parking space without problems. Why the owner of this tiny Honda Jazz needs to overlap the adjacent space is beyond me, but you could say thanks to my small van they are well and truly OWND.

A guy driving past who saw me park even wound down his window and congratulated me on this little act.

Secondly, the peace gardens... why did the arrogant students insist on getting up off their blanket, folding it away, and walk off leaving a pile of rubbish behind?. Thankfully the city ambassadors (bless 'em) saw it happen, and confro…

I'm going to be a published photographer!

It seems the people at have taken notice of a couple of my photos:

I've just signed the form to have them published in their forthcoming book... and will be getting a complimentary copy for my photos. Wonderful!