After the Storm

The greater part of this week has been spent submerged in an alien computer system – trying to make head or tail of how it works, how it hangs together, and how I might use it going forwards. There have been times when I wondered how far down the rabbit hole went – if I might see the surface again. This afternoon lightbulb after lightbulb switched on in the depths of my fragmented brain, and launched me back towards the surface. I suddenly have stories to tell co-workers, insights to share, and a brave new world to describe.

It’s a relief.

It’s amazing how much energy you expend when you don’t know where you’re going, or what you’re really doing. Hitting google, textbooks, and discussion forums works to an extent, but the only real escape is via knowledge and experience – and they both have to be earned.

I’m shattered.

I’m finding it difficult to concentrate this afternoon. Having climbed to the top of the first mental hill of many I might face over the coming months, I’m wondering about downing tools for a while. It’s difficult – I become my worst enemy at times like this. Now that I have reached the top of the first hill, I can see the next one. The temptation to set out towards it is enormous.

Perhaps I’ll go and make a coffee.



Yes, I’m still here. No, I haven’t shut the blog down (yet). If the last few years have taught me anything, it’s that I’ll always return. Eventually. I’m wondering if this “every other day” (or less) plan is better, because I end up with things to write about, rather than just dumping the events of the day into the keyboard – and yes, I know many people thing the random miscellany is the best stuff, but I have this idiotic machine ticking away in my head, that thinks of things from time to time, and if I record the mundane, the crazy stuff doesn’t get it’s chance in the sun.

I find myself becoming increasingly frustrated with “people” at the moment. Few people seem to have much perspective any more – it’s all about them, their concerns, their opinions, and their soapbox ranting. There is no grey area in a debate any more – you are either with the shouty people, or you are the enemy.

As an example, J K Rowling posted a fairly innocuous tweet last week about women losing their voice in the world. She termed them “people who menstruate”, and nobody seemed to get it – she got shouted down by a rapidly moving mob who invented their own message from her words and busily organised pitchforks and a bonfire. Her objection to the Spartacus situation many people find themselves in immediately played itself out – drowning out her voice just as she highlighted was happening to others.

Very few seem to want to see a bigger or wider picture, because it’s easier to tear people down, rubbish their views, and walk away. In this supposedly “woke” world where there are so many opportunities to educate ourselves, there seems to be a LOT of wilful ignorance going on.

Anyway – enough of that.

It’s been a quiet week. We have had builders in at home. Our house now has shiny new windows and doors – and we have no money. Well… we obviously have enough for food and bills, but that’s about it.

I’m still running. I’ll be out first thing tomorrow – probably on my own – running around town. I may well go for the full 5K distance – I’m fed up with repeatedly back-tracking the “Couch to 5K” plan to suit the children. My eldest can’t run this week because she has shin splints, and my youngest is suffering from “can’t get out of bed-itus”.

In other news, our ginger cat – the last of three brothers – has been unwell. He spent most of this week in hospital, and has returned home tonight. Fingers crossed he will be ok, but of course now we have the ridiculous job of making him take tablets several times a day. Have you ever tried to get a cat to swallow a tablet? Yeah… you kind of need chain-mail armour.


Quiz City

This evening I performed the role of “Quiz Master” for a quiz with the staff and families of the school where my other half works. We used “Zoom”, and I created a presentation for the quiz as a webpage – with controls to flick through the questions, and to turn the answers on and off. We had six rounds of ten questions, and a picture round for fun in the middle.

It went really well. So well, infact, that several people shouted out “let’s do it again next week!”, and I quietly groaned – because that means coming up with another 60 questions. I had not realised before how difficult it might be to come up with questions that covered both adults and children, and that would allow most people to get at least half to three quarters of the questions right.

I’ve done charity quizes in the past for friends where the questions were horrifically difficult – and by the end of the night you really didn’t care any more. I figured you have to let people do well enough that they don’t lose interest.

I think the questions were judged about right. I will admit to doing a dummy run through the quiz with a friend in Australia yesterday – just to double check it.

This evening I took part in “The Big Nerd Pub Quiz” on YouTube with the rest of my family. It seems during lock-down we have taken to doing these kinds of activities instead of watching TV. The Big Nerd Pub Quiz is run by a guy in Ireland, and he broadcasts in the evening – so lunchtime for the US – with various quizzes during the week. He’s doing a special Star Wars quiz on May 4th, if you’re interested – find him on YouTube.

Anyway. I’m all quizzed out. I’m going to go play some video games, then fall into bed.