Monthly Archives: March 2010

And another thing…

A trilogy in six parts is the best way the describe the enormously popular series “Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy“, assuming of course that you are willing to accept the new, post Adams novel “And Another Thing“*. Having now read the book I’ve decided that I am going to stick to the original five books.

The main problem I had with this new book is that Eoin Colfer has tried far to hard. In an attempt to make it as Hitchhiker as possible he’s attempted to include as many old charactors as possible. Not only Arthur, Ford, Trillian and Zaphod, but Random (Arthur’s daughter), the Vogans (still trying to destroy Earth and all Earthlings), Thor (Norse God), Wowbagger The Infinately Prolonged (the chap who was trying to insult everyone in the universe in alphabetical order), Tricia McMillan (an alternative version of Trillian from Mostly Harmless), Fenchurch (Arthur’s love, lost in hyperspace in So Long And Thanks For All The Fish) and the Heart of Gold… indeed I was almost surprised when Marvin the Paraniod Android failed to appear.

Indeed, as with the fourth Indianna Jones film, if you can live without this extra edition do so and be happy with the far superior originals. Hitchhikers is, in my mind, still a Trilogy in Five parts.

* – or, as I thought it was called when I went to library to ask for it “And Something Else”… which wouldn’t have helped the libarian to find it, especially as I couldn’t remember the new author… lucky I spotted it on the shelf first. All credit to the libarian though, she immediately recognised the title as being “Douglas Adams-esq”.

April 3rd, 5.20pm…

Well, for those of you who have been waiting, my episode of Total Wipeout will be on BBC1, Saturday April 3rd @ 5.20pm, right before the new Dr Who. I wouldn’t necessarily advise getting a cup of tea in at the start of the episode, you know, just in case…

India…

Ok, I’ve been back for a week now, but I’ve only really put my photos up in Flickr at the weekend and I’ve still not put most of my videos up on youtube.

The trip was awesome fun. It was my debut on the international archery scene which made it quite special. I had shot for Wales already last summer at the British Target Champs for the Home Nations competition. But this, being the test event for the Commonwealth Games later in the year, was a lot further away than Shropshire and against a much greater number of countries than just England and Scotland.

The first thing we noticed when we arrived (3am on a Sunday) was the traffic. There are apparently rules to the road in India… I’m not sure that anyone knows them. A great example of this was on a tuk-tuk trip from the Red Fort in Delhi down to the Lotus Temple. Our drivers wanted to turn right onto a dual-carriageway (they drive on the left in India) but there was a central reservation… so they drove for a couple of minutes the wrong way down the street until they got to a gap that they could cross… it was… interesting!!

Some of the other things that I noticed out in town was that even though it was all quite dusty and dirty and a lot of the areas appeared to be fairly poor, is that people seemed to be quite cheerful, indeed I was impressed at the range of colours of the saris that the women wore. To give an example I would need to break out the bumper book of colours but there were blues, greens, reds, purples, golds, oranges, yellows… other colours.

I also did some shooting. Monday was practice, basically so we could look over the grounds, make sure everything was working and to get our equipment checked by the judges. It was also our introduction to what the weather was going to be like… blue sky and +30 degree temperatures. It was lovely!!

Qualifiying was on Tuesday and while I didn’t do as well as I’d wanted to do I managed to achieve the very important goal of not coming last!!

Wednesday had the individual head-to-heads and the lower team head-to-heads. Having finished in nineteenth postition my first match was against the fourteenth place archer. Ironically, despite travelling all the way to India my very first match was against an English archer who lives in the very next county. In our first set he took the points 56-55, though as I dropped a 7 in with my last shot in all fairness I really lost that set rather than hin winning in. In the second set he won again, this time 57-53, which left me in joint 17th at the end of the day.

In our first team match we were up against Scotland. Scotland started well, pulling out a three point lead after the first twelve shots, but we had a strong second half and not only caught up but ended up winning by five points. Yay us!! Into the semi-finals and the possibility of a medal.

Thursday was finals days for the team event. Our first match was against the #1 ranked Malasian team and it went exactly as planed… they scored more points and won!! But never mind, for there was still the bronze medal match against India (who lost to England). While I can’t really claim that we were keeping India worried I can at least claim that we ended up with a really good reason for not winning when one of the guys had an equipment failure that meant he missed the target and caused us a couple minutes of worry as you are not given any time to fix things during a head-to-head match. So once the arrows had been scored we either had to be ready or forfit the match. Thankfully we managed to get the bow fixed and were at least able to finish the match.

Friday were the individual finals and though we had no archers who’d made it that far we all went along anyway to watch… and to teach the Indian team how to chant from the stands.

Saturday saw most of the team heading home, apart from three of us who hadn’t been able to get seats on that plane so we decided to go see the Taj Mahal… it is a truely amazing building and if you ever do get the chance to go I would highly reccomend it!! We weren’t there for sun rise/set where the Taj Mahal is supposed to change colour with the sunlight, but even so it was a truely amazing building.

All of my photos can be found on my Flickr Page

And here’s a taster of what’s there.

As real life mimics fiction…

I have always been impressed at how some people take full advantage of what’s around them. A grand great example is the wonderful world of sandcastles and snowmen. One is for the summer and the other for the winter, and with this being the season for snow we are in snowman season!!

Now does anyone remember an episode of The Simpsons where Marge manages to get Itchy and Scratchy toned down to be non-violent and non-offensive. And then the group that she’s formed sort of goes… overboard. To the point that when Michelangelo’s David comes on tour it is deemed offensive.

And real life…?? Well, this story about how a snow sculpture of Venus de Milo had to be either covered up or knocked down…. all because someone found it “too risque”. To be honest, the covered up version looks even worse. The green bikini and blue wrap makes it so much more noticable.

There is also a part of me that just wants to see the real one in that get-up as well…

I might have lied…

You know how I said that now the Olympics is over I can start having early nights… it seems I lied. Just as I was finishing work yesterday I discovered that Britain’s newest steam locomotive was passing through my local station on it’s way to the Mid Hant’s Railway Spring Gala.

It was, however, passing through just after 2am, which is a little on the early (or late) side.

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zZZHScZ2G2w[/youtube]

Well, that month’s over…

Ahhh, welcome to March, the sadest thing about the end of Feburary is that the Winter Olympics is over, and I will have to admit getting to bed before 2am will be quite nice. I am sadly one of those people who are just adicted to watching sport. I really do love it. The curling, skiing, snow-boarding, figure skating, the bobs and most importantly the ice hockey.

Did anyone else see the hockey final on Sunday?? Wasn’t it edge-of-your-seat wonderful. The way it looked like Canada were going to have a fairly easy win and then the US slowly coming back, getting the equalising goal with only 24.4 seconds left in regulation. Such high drama. And then, in sudden-death overtime Sidney Crosby, the Canadian NHL superstar who has had a terribly quiet tournament scores the goal that gave Canada the gold medal that they held most dear.

Oh wonderful… truely it was!!