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Below are the 20 most recent journal entries recorded in limpingdog's LiveJournal:

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Friday, October 25th, 2013
11:29 pm
Hello again
I am once again in the Isle of Man, sitting at the the same desk from whence I last posted from here.

This says something about the frequency of my posts here.
Saturday, December 22nd, 2012
4:19 pm
Sic transit
Hmm. My Friends page says "Below are the most recent 0 friends' journal entries." This is not a good sign.

Current Mood: disappointed
Friday, July 1st, 2011
11:07 pm
Long time, no post
So, I'm in the Isle of Man. It turns out that there's an Ale of Man, i.e. a local beer with a sense of humour. Allow me to quote the label...:

Bushy's is rightly proud that all of its products meet or exceed the conditions laid down in the Manx Government's Pure Beer Act, which became law in 1874, and reads:
No Brewer shall use in the brewing, mixing, making, mixing with, recovering or colouring, any beer, or any liquid made to resemble beer, or have in his possession any copperas, coculus Indicus, nux vomica, grains of paradise, Guinea pepper, or opium or any article, ingredient or preparation whatever for, or as a substitute for malt, sugar or hops.

I am officially worried.

Current Mood: worried
Thursday, July 22nd, 2010
8:55 pm
It occurred to me a while back that if you're in the UK, you post a letter in a postbox, from whence it is collected by an employee of Royal Mail. By contrast, if you're in the USA, you mail a letter in a mailbox, from whence it is collected by an employee of the US Postal Service.

If you get any of these terms the wrong way round, you totally confuse everybody.

Current Mood: contemplative
8:53 pm
Honest disclaimers
The week before last (while passing through Stranraer) I bought a copy of The Alternative Highway Code by Top Gear. It includes the following warning:

Due to a series of errors at the conception, writing and production stages, this book does not contain any useful information whatsoever, and should not be used as a guide to either driving OR fish. Sorry.

You can't fault them on honesty. Sense, yes. Honesty, no.
Thursday, June 17th, 2010
9:34 pm
I keep getting a popup telling me the Spanish for whatever I'm hovering over in Internet Explorer. Is this happening to everyone, or am I special... and in any case, why?

Current Mood: confused
Friday, March 12th, 2010
11:20 pm
This morning, I managed to lock myself in my porch.

This evening, I got locked in at work.

It's been one of those days.
Monday, January 4th, 2010
9:52 pm
Yesterday, I got round to buying a plug for my sink. (I had to take it back today and change it, because it turned out that my sink needed a bath plug (1¾") rather than a sink plug(1½"), but never mind.)

Asda sells them only in packs of two.

Is it just me who finds this odd - are there many people out there with pairs of sinks?
Wednesday, December 2nd, 2009
7:21 pm
On Thursday, I went to WHSmiths. When I found some envelopes (I had to find them myself as the shop assistants didn't know where they all were), I discovered that they were £2.69 for 25, £2.99 for 50, or £3.99 for 100.

Is the packaging expensive, do you think?
Saturday, November 21st, 2009
8:47 pm
Approximation of a conversation yesterday
Me: There was a billboard just now. It said "Sendodyne is the UK's No. 1 selling brand of sensitive toothpaste" or something like that. I feel like saying "Yes. And?"
Colleague: You're not very clear on the concept of advertising, are you?
Me: It doesn't really encourage me to buy it.
Him: I suppose it doesn't say it's the best or anything... It's herd mentality. People want to be told what everyone else is doing so that they can do the same.
Me: Surely they want to at least pretend that they're deciding for themselves...
Sunday, May 3rd, 2009
11:19 pm
On Friday, I went with some colleagues into Liverpool. We went into the Cavern Club (which was apparently filled in and concreted over, only to be dug out again at some point). Anyway, there were several signs on the wall. One of them read as follows:

It is a criminal offence for
any person to sell alcohol to
a person who is under the
age of 18 anywhere.

There are no exceptions to

As I pointed out to anyone who would listen, this would seem to suggest that, if someone attempts to buy alcohol at 8am on their 18th birthday, the bartenders would be obliged to refuse on the basis that, for example, they are still under 18 in Hawaii.
Tuesday, April 7th, 2009
11:31 pm
What does this say about me?
Yesterday, I was reading an English usage guide (as one does). I found the following entry:

Not only out of its place is like a tintack loose on the floor; it might have been most serviceable somewhere else, & is capable of giving acute & undeserved pain where it is.

I laughed out loud.
Thursday, April 2nd, 2009
9:29 am
Thought for a day
When I fly anywhere (a pretty rare occurrence), I take a suitcase.

When I travel by any other means, I take a flight bag.

What does this tell us?
Friday, February 27th, 2009
11:13 pm
On a totally irrelevant note...
I haven't posted here for however many months, yet here I am.

In September, I went to Edinburgh for a conference. One evening, there was a historical tour. Some of the history given was a bit dubious - for example, he got Burke and Hare's crime wrong, and he said that Queen Elizabeth II wasn't so called in Scotland. (The courts have previously found otherwise.)

For no discernible reason but presumably prompted by this, I started thinking today about what names are considered royal, and it suddenly dawned on me that, since the Glorious Revolution (1688), British Kings have had one of only three names, being crowned George, William or Edward, and the next two are, likewise, generally expected to be George VII and William V.

Doesn't this show a slight lack of originality?
Sunday, December 7th, 2008
4:56 pm
Sony Ericsson software
I bought a new phone the other day. Unfortunately, the batter of my laptop went flat before I could install its software.

It claimed to have resumed the installation when I plugged it in.

It refused to let me install anything else on the grounds that that installation was underway, even after I'd rebooted the computer twice.

When I hard rebooted the computer, it claimed to have finished the installation, but it didn't work, although it did let me install other things.

Now I'm trying again. The progress bar is once again increasing and decreasing in a totally unpredictable fashion. It's been installing for over half an hour.

I'm sure there's a lesson here, but I haven't worked out what yet.
Tuesday, December 2nd, 2008
10:55 pm
I managed to burn the spaghetti I was cooking today.

I suppose I should have made sure it was fully immersed before I turned the TV on.

Ah well...

Current Mood: indifferent
Monday, September 8th, 2008
10:45 pm
I've been thinking about the oft-quoted phrase "If work was enjoyable, they wouldn't have to pay you." I've always thought that this was a nonsense; now I think I can say what the correct asserion is: either

1) If work was enjoyable, they wouldn't have to pay you to spend some of your time doing it; or

2) If work was the most enjoyable activity available, they wouldn't have to pay you to do it above subsistence level.

Given that our employers gain from our work, isn't it unsurprising that they try to maximise the amount of work before minimising its cost (although I don't deny that they try to do that too)?

Any thoughts?
10:40 pm
Writer's Block: Pardon You, Mr. Nixon
On September 8th, 1974, U.S. President Gerald Ford pardoned Richard Nixon. What limits should there be, if any, on pardoning power? What makes a pardon legitimate to you?

This is something I've thought about before. I have two spins on this:

1) Granting the head of state the right to pardon on the basis of his/her personal discretion is the sort of thing that Britain typically has and Americans typically criticise;

2) In Ford's case, I think he should have waited to find what Nixon was guilty of before pardonning him of it, rather than pardonning him for anything he may or may not have done.
Wednesday, September 3rd, 2008
10:02 pm
The wonders of modern technology
I'm proofreading a document in Word 2007. I ran a spell check on one paragraph. Nothing came up. I discovered that parts of the document are flagged "do not check spelling", but this is altered via the "set language button".

The message to say that flagged sections are skipped appears if and only if it finds an error in a passage that isn't flagged.

It's useful to know that Microsoft is on its usual form...
Monday, September 1st, 2008
9:51 pm
OK, now my washing machine can turn its drum (presumably) but makes strange noises whenever it tries to drain, and then refuses to open again.

Admittedly, it turned out there were several coins in the pump filter, but removing those changed the noises being made rather than solving the problem.

Argh argh argh.

Current Mood: blah
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