I love fans
I love the internet, and I love fans.
Because truly, Star Trek as the A-Team? Does it get any better?
Just the titles… but surely this could be the start of something bigger?
Am I that strange?
So when we went to see Indy (which I should blog… sometime…), we went to a cinema with allocated seating. When we got to buy our tix, we were both – shall we say – a bit excited. My love asked if we could be in the middle, and I said “Up the front?” at the same time. The dude looked at his screen and said we could have off centre, near the back. My love frowned and said, “How about up the front?” The dude looked surprised and replied “I thought you were being sarcastic!” So we got row 5. No one in front of us.
Hello?! If I go to the cinema, I want to really be at the cinema: I would prefer not to have anything in my peripheral vision except more screen! How is this such a strange thing? Because there were very few people near us, for Indy.*
Then tonight, my love and I went to IMAX, to see U23D (which will also be blogged, and was awesome). It was IMAX, so we didn’t go too crazy: we sat in the third row, which was quite close enough. There was a couple sitting behind us (who insisted on talking… grrr…), but no one else in our row and no one in front.
Are we strange? Tell me there are other people who sit up the front!
*Except for a dad and three kids under eight. I looked at the kid who sat next to me and told him, gravely, that he hadn’t been born when I started looking forward to this movie. The dad laughed; the kid ended up moving… which maybe wasn’t a bad resultÂ Â ;]
The Great Debate
It was about the most outgoing weekend I’ve had since… oh, Swancon ;]
I really wanted to go to some stuff at the Comedy Festival this year, and the Great Debate seemed like a pretty good bet. (I really wanted to go to the Gala, but it turns out the tix for that are available about six months beforehand, and sell out in, oh, a day or so.) When we bought tickets, there was no info about either the topic or the participants. A couple of days before, I found out that Hamish Blake and Cal Wilson were in it – which I thought boded well, because I really like Hamish… Cal I’m indifferent towards.
It’s a very awesome venue, the Melbourne Town Hall: lots of seating but still not enormous; we were in the front row of the circle, and right in the middle which was cool: I worried for a bit that there would be someone in front of us, at the sound desk, but it turned out OK. The compere was Corinne Grant, whom I generally enjoy, and she was very funny. The other funny thing, which was also a bit disturbing, was that we could see the tele-prompter from where we sat: I was very worried that the whole lot would be like that, but only Corinne’s between-participant bits were prompted (and were, frankly, dull).
I was hugely excited when I saw that Paul McDermott was on the bill! I’ve loved Paul since way back on Good News Week and the greatest ever breakfast radio team (Paul and Mikey Robbins. If you don’t remember, you’re too young or weren’t listening to a good station). Sadly, he was probably my least favourite for the whole night. Just… not that funny. *sigh* Hamish, though, was brilliant, as was Stephen K Amos; Julia Morris has impeccable timing; and Patton Oswalt was pretty good too. Cal, as expected, left me a bit flat.
Overall, it was a good night! Oh yes – the topic was “That reality is better on TV.” Which was a very appropriate topic – the cameras and all… it was delightfully meta-something.
Run for the Kids
So we had a delightful ride down to the Gardens, this morning – my darling came with me, to cheer me on and make sure I didn’t get lost in finding the right place. Fat chance of that – there was a gazillion people standing around. Seriously; there were more than 25000 people, I think, in the race.
We then stood around for a while… which was kind of fun, but also a bit boring after a while.
It was very odd standing in such a huge group to begin with, and to be honest it was quite a pain. There were two groups for the short course, which I did: green and white. Green was for “active and semi-active” runners and joggers; white for slow joggers and walkers. I went in the white group, because I signed up weeks ago and I thought was realistic. I really ought to have been in the green group, and I should have pushed further to the front, too. It was madness to begin – I crossed the starting line 7 minutes or so after it officially began – and it took a while to push through people to get a clear run. And, really, I don’t feel like I got a clear run until maybe the 2km mark. Damned walkers! I was still passing walkers for aaages, and they got in the way for quite a while.
My aim was to complete the run in under 35 min, and to do it continuously. I did manage it in under 35 – only just, and I reckon I can claim a minute or so of time because of the faffing at the start! – but I didn’t quite manage it continuously. I walked for maybe a minute, half way up the heartbreaking hill that is Anderson St; then a minute or so on the other side as well, because I couldn’t catch my breath. Still, I think that’s a fairly good result! I’m pleased.
Now, to be able to do the 8km of a double Tan in a reasonable time…
Back from the insanity…
and sleep-deprived place that is Swancon. Wahey! What fun. So much to say… but not right now. Because right now, much to the amusement of my friends at said con, I am about to spend a day at another conference! This one is on Feasting in the (ancient) Aegean. And I doubt there will be room-parties – not like mine, anyway. (And I won’t know, because even if there were, I think my body would break if I asked it to do another late night.)
However, if you’re interested, I am doing an online forum thingy tomorrow night, on my experiences at the con, for a dear friend of mine: it will be happening on RedBubble. I have no idea who will bother tuning in to ask questions, but if you want to come and be provocative you’ll have to sign up to RedBubble first (which doesn’t cost, and doesn’t spam, if you’re interested).
So much more to come… just not right now.
… because I am utterly, utterly astonished at being nominated for the Ditmars!
I was going to mention which ones, but… I think I won’t. This is partly because it really would be gratuitous, but also for a small amount of anonymity to be retained here. I don’t imagine my students would find this – I’ve never said where my school is, and there’s nothing here to link me to my name (yet) – but still, I feel more comfortable knowing they can’t randomly google me and find this! So, I must say that since I’ve read most of the stuff nominated this year (except a couple of the novels… oops), I think it’s a strong list!
I was going to post the list here, too, but… that would come close to defeating the anonymity principle.
I went tonight. It was great, of course. I wasn’t in stitches – having shown Holy Grail to two classes in the last couple of days might have taken the edge off for me – but it was still very, very funny. The bits they’ve added in were magnificent.
Anyway, there was one part I thought I’d share with you. They blow the bunny up with the Holy Hand Grenade, and the scenery falls down to reveal the word BONES in ‘stone.’ There is much confusion, until one of the knights suggests the S might be a 5. So it might actually say B-one-5.
At this point, my stomach dropped.
Then the spotlight landed on B15.
The Grail was “under my seat”; after they retrieved it, they decided that the brave peasant needed to be brought on stage, so they could properly say thank you. (They are so LOUD on stage!) So I got to shake their hands, had my name announced to the audience (I checked; there’s about 1700 seats at Her Majesty’s)… and then I won an Arthur for Best Peasant in Melbourne, which means I now have a little statuette of a foot… and a photo with half the cast! Yes, they brought a Polaroid out on to stage.
These sorts of things never happen to me.
I will blog properly about the show itself tomorrow, when I have calmed down a bit. For now… when Patsy retrieved the Grail and went back on stage, part of me was relieved that that might be all, and part of me was just a little disappointed – how dumb is that?? And then they got me on stage, and part of me was embarrassed and really didn’t know where to look (seriously; you can see maybe to the second row); but part of was dead impressed.
Yeh, ok, I’m going to try and sleep it off now. Although given it’s still a million degrees, sleeping might be hard.
So, apparently George Takei – who played Sulu in Star Trek and, unbeknownst to me, also had a part in Heroes – has had an asteroid named after him. That’s very nice, and appropriate and all. But what I really want to know is whether there is a lump of rock out there with the sobriquet Shatner? How about Nimoy? or Kelley? (Bones is one of my very favouritest characters, if I as a non-Trekie had favourite Trek characters…). I’ll bet there’s not a Koenig (Chekov), and would bet an even greater sum that there is no Nichols (Uhura – the girl, remember?).
Anyway, this post is brought to you courtesy of my viewing yesterday of Star Trek V, in my ongoing quest to see all of the old Star Trek movies, which is quickly approaching completion. I’ll post more on numero 5 later… since I really ought to be writing reports at this precise moment.
(It started off lovely and warm today, is getting cooler with approaching rain; I have music and the cricket on – which I notice has just been stopped for rain, inÂ sunny Hobart – so if I have to be writing reports, it’s a pleasant way to do it).
On being a grown-up
I frequently feel old – when I have to go to sleep early, or I worry about cleaning and shopping, or I get cranky at my students. Feeling grown-up, though, is something different – something delightful. For me, it’s a feeling of inclusion in the adult world – where I don’t always feel like I fit! – of being privy to adult secrets and rituals. The other night, I went to a lecture at Melbourne Uni (which I will blog about soon). And I got to feel like a grown-up, courtesy of two dear (and very different) men. One was my history method tutor during my Dip Ed: an enthusiastic, vibrant, history-loving inspiration. The other was my Honours supervisor, with whom I had also done a number of subjects during undergrad. Despite some, let us say, philosophical differences (he’s very anti-Christian), we always got on well, and he kept on pushing and pushing me (in a good way). At any rate, both were there (and they know each other – my supervisor was my tutor’s PhD supervisor…), and both were pleased to see me. The delight when I mentioned that I would be joining the Classics Association was ridiculous! (Until I looked around and realised what I would do to the median age of the members….) And… well, it was just really nice to feel like I was accepted into their group: I wasn’t an undergrad, nor a precocious child, but an equal.
It really made my day. Week, even.
I know how they make Flakes
… and it’s one of my more momentous discoveries of recent times.
So it seems that chocolate that reaches its expiry date gets sent back to the manufacturer. Fine. It gets melted down. OK….
And then it gets re-used.
The highest cocoa-percentage dark chocolate has not had this treatment. But milk chocolate is, at least partly, dark chocolate that has been melted down, the other bits sieved out, and then… turned into different chocolate.
This process gets repeated a few times. Eventually, the chocolate gets to the point where it loses elasticity, it won’t stick together very well, and it’s not even good enough for Easter eggs because it won’t work that thin.
You got it. That’s what gets turned into Flakes. Pretty clever propaganda, and use of resources, eh?