Wednesday, 19 February 2014

Me and lots of famous people.

I may suffer from SHFAITPOFP. That's Spontaneous High Functioning Autism In The Presence Of Famous People.

It might have its roots with an incident with Mick Jagger when I was 11 years old. I was on my bicycle about to cross a road. A white Jag was coming towards me but I thought that if I was quick I'd get across Okay. I pressed down hard on the pedal, the chain snapped and I crashed down onto the crossbar. The Jag slowed and swerved to avoid me, Mick Jagger's head poked out of the window telling me to, "Get off the f**king road!" I couldn't respond, perhaps due to my testicles being pressed up against my diaphragm.

Years later, I was a volunteer helping out at the highly esteemed Questors Theatre in Ealing. (I'm beginning to wonder if it was actually unconscious aversion therapy.) Anyway, I crossed paths with many quite famous actors while carrying props to and fro. On one occasion I had to stand aside and let the gorgeous Judi Dench pass by. I bowed! Yes, bowed. I actually fricking bowed!

Also at Questors, I happened to glance up and come into eye contact with Simon MacCorkindale. I found myself doing a simultaneous eyebrow-bob-reverse-head-nod while one side of my mouth tried a cool smile and the other side went for nonchalance. I swear the poor guy started looking round for security personnel for protection.

A while  ago I lived in West Hampstead and many times found myself fleeing from a friendly nod from the likes of Emma Thomson and the bald bloke from the Bronski Beat. One day I happened to find myself trapped in a small patisserie with Gordon Jackson who was ordering croissants as if he was projecting his enormous voice across Wembley Stadium. I commented, "Your voice doesn't curdle the cream so much as hurdle it, ha ha." To his credit, Mr Jackson seemed to recognise my SHFAITPOFP by doing the best possible thing in the circumstances and ignored me.

In the early 2000's, the then Prime Minister Tony Blair visited my company, turned to me and said, "So you're the brains behind all of this?" My response was, "Umm ferr pfeeble crufhh cucckle pfaah .. yes" so overwhelmed was I by his fame.

The exception was Simon Ward. Probably best known for Young Winston Churchill and All Creatures Great And Small.  Around the mid 80's I think, he was sat opposite me on a tube. Some children further along the carriage were whispering and pointing at him saying, "It's the Winston Churchill bloke .. James Herriot .." Simon looked at me, smiled and rolled his eyes in a self-deprecating 'kids, what are they like?' kind of way. I smiled back like a normal person and carried on reading my Evening Standard. Weird that.

When I heard of Simon's death in 2012 I was deeply moved.

The only other celebrity whose death I was so moved by was Robert Shaw. He was my childhood hero in The Buccaneers, a TV show about pirates. His voice as he buckled his swash stays with me still. A man filled with so much life. How could that ever go away?

What brought on this post was a Tweet I just sent to Hugh Laurie. I was trying to agree with his observation that some English commentators speak in idioms when talking to none English speakers. I'd just been watching the Winter Olympics and had thought the exact same thing.

His example had been, "Mario, are you whistling in the dark? Or slaying dragons by giving a green light to the shot in the arm on the front foot?"

This is my tweet trying to register my agreement: "@hughlaurie IKR? A spontaneous and almost completely unsycophantic LOL (I'm shite with famous folk)"

What in heaven's name was I thinking?!

Of course, we unfamous-ones can never really know the famous ones. And being famous must be so incredibly difficult when it comes to new acquaintances. How do you separate the genuine from the sycophants? My tweet must have been very helpful. *sigh* I can only pray the dude never reads it.

If you're famous and reading this, "Hiya :) LOL I like real ale but not keen on beetroot."

*facepalm* Oh, Lord …

Monday, 23 September 2013

Proof of a finite universe (ish)

I've been down this road a few years ago but a conversation with a graphic designer displaying work for his Masters made me think, rinse and repeat:

  • My computer screen has 1366 x 768 pixel.
    • That's 1,049,088 pixels
  • Each pixel can display 32,000 colours.
  • So, the number of unique pictures my computer screen is capable of displaying is 32,0001,049,088
    • That's 32,000 to the power 1,049,088 - which is a HUGE number of images.

That huge number of images would include all text already written and to be written, all galaxies, all people's faces past, present and future. Any image of any action, every molecule or animal .. anything.

But however huge that number is, it's finite.

The number of possible images in our universe would appear to be finite.

Unless you increase the resolution of your computer that is ...

Just a thought.

Friday, 20 September 2013

The art of ..

.. making things more concise: summarisationalising.

Thursday, 12 September 2013

Exciting new development

Here's something I've been working on for a while now .. it's in its very basic form and experimental but I think I've figured out a way to collect image data from interference patterns on a monitor so it can act as a camera without the need for extra hardware.
please as I'd like to test it on as many types of screens as possible.

Monday, 9 September 2013

Big Bang or Super Suck?

Clearly, any matter that pops into existence surrounded by nothing at all is going to feel enormous forces at its boundaries. As this puny pea of matter is sucked large by its surrounding nout the area where matter meets nothing grows. This growing area naturally has a larger sucking-factor and so the 'expansion' of the matter gets faster.

That Einstein bloke really should have thought of this.

Oh! Oh! Wait!

Gravity doesn't suck! It's actually the Earth accelerating as it expands making us stick to the surface.

Obvious really.

More Madera?

Thursday, 4 April 2013

Flummoxed by Why

The Alien wanted to know, so I trotted out a potted version of humanity's time on this planet. How we'd evolved and spread out over the world to become the various groups and races here now. How some were rich, well fed and comfortable, and some were poor, starving and in constant pain.

'Why are some of you starving and in pain?' he asked.

While I wondered how to answer, I woke up.

Sunday, 15 July 2012

Amazon recommends ..

Today I received an email from Amazon. They recommend I read "Buffy the Vampire Slayer".

This is how I reacted:

Wednesday, 25 April 2012

Mmmmm .. cookies

EU Cookie Law - are you ready?

A quote from heart internet's blog -

"Last May a law was passed stating that all websites dropping non-essential cookies on visitors’ devices have to declare it publicly and ensure visitors acknowledge and agree with them to continue browsing the website. If you/your business resides within the EU, you have until the 26th May 2012 to implement your solution on your website(s). The most important thing to know is that if your website doesn’t comply with the new law, you can potentially be fined up to £500,000."

The blog is here:

Forgive me if you're already up to speed, but as I'm fielding a lot of questions about "cookie legislation" recently (in my other life as IT Consultant and Business Mentor) I thought heart internet's blog a good place to start for anyone seeking more information on the subject.

Google's position on use of it's Analytics' Cookies (many blogging sites, including this one, use them) is still not clear. Anyone who can shed light on what they propose please get in touch.

Monday, 14 November 2011

Wrong room

I knew instantly I was in the wrong room.

My room shouldn’t have contained a perspiring middle-aged woman pointing at a flip chart in front of six assorted adults who stared blankly at .. well, me.

“Take a seat,” she said. “I’m Anita.”

Guess what I did. I sat down.

Clearly my appointment was left at the top of the stairs, not right. And I was fifteen minutes early. And Anita’s damp finger was pointing at an email address written on the flip chart which started PsychoBitch69@ … Shoot me, but I had time and I was intrigued.

“I’ve just been explaining,” said Anita for my benefit, “that your name and address should appear centered at the top of your CV.”

I nodded appreciatively. Anita looked like she needed all the encouragement she could get.

She continued, “Remember to use a normal email address. Employers aren’t going to employ someone with this kind of email address are they. And this is a genuine one I came across just the other day.”

“That was me,” said a burly woman at the other end of the little group of desks.

Anita’s mouth moved but nothing emerged.

“What’s wrong with it?” Burly woman demanded.

“Well,” Anita cleared a throat that didn’t need clearing, “imagine if you were the employer. What would you think of a person with that email address?”

“I’ve been diagnosed as psychotic,” Ms Burly explained. “I have a psychotic personality disorder. The doctor said.” Ms Burly sat back and placed a green Wellington boot on her desk. Her foot was still in it. “Shouldn’t I put that on my CV, like?”

Anita looked at each person in turn, finally stopping at me.

“I think I’m in the wrong room,” I said, and stood to leave.

The desperate look on Anita’s face will haunt me forever. Don’t leave me... it seemed to plead.

I left.