All posts by neil

5 days at work, 2 days off…

…I know this may not sound that exciting, but is quite rare for me!

Another fun week, we went over to Nick and Sarahs on Sunday for a meal and Wii, poker in the pub again on Monday (I did awfully), we watched Elizabethtown which I quite liked (really liked the soundtrack), and Be Kind Rewind at the cinema yesterday (quite fun but nothing special). I have also started reading The Zahir by Paulo Coelho, sometimes his “spiritual” elements to his stories distract from the interesting characters and how they relate to each other, but so far he has avoided that in this book.

Last night I watched Black Snake Moan. A plot where Samuel L Jackson ties a you woman to a radiator with a chain may not sound a promising plot, but actually it is quite a good film.

Today I am looking forward to the Grand Prix, and seeing if Renault and Alonso are finally back on form, or if it was a one off qualifying fluke.

Forgotton film…

. I forgot that we went to see Shine A Light on Tuesday, although it was a very well put together piece, and the Digital HD projection was fantastic it did make me realise that I don’t really like the Rolling Stones music that much, and as the film is essentially a concert then there was not much I could get out of it.

We have just got back from seeing a preview screening of Persepolis. Stylistically it is a joy to look at, the story took me a while to get into, but when I finally did then I really enjoyed it. It based on the memiors of an Iranian woman now living in France, and her story is told through animated memories. The film has a dark feel with much being in only shades of grey, and a fairly bleak outlook on life!

Sunday again…

I know it is slack of me to only update my blog on Sunday mornings, but it seems to be when I feel most inspired to do it!

On Sunday evening we watched Jindabyne, which is a really rubbish indy film with Laura Linney. Perhaps I have a lack of understanding of the issues the film explores, or perhaps the plot really is as poor as I felt it was…

On Monday night I managed to win the poker at the City Gate, had a few lucky hands and a few bluffs (although perhaps I should not tell you that in case any of the guys ore reading!)

Tuesday was a quieter night meeting up with Darren and Dave for a drink.

Wednesday was afternoon off, so we drove down to Darts Farm for some fish and chips and to pick up some nice food, we then strolled around Topsham and Ivonne played with her new SLR camera. Even by the time we got home the weather was glorious so we sat in the garden of the Mill on the Exe pub and Ivonne took some more pictures…

Mill on the Exe

If you look closely you can see me reading…

Me reading at Mill on the Exe

I had just started reading The Remains of the Day by Kazuo Ishiguro, and I just finished it last night, it is a really excellent book and I am looking forward to seeing the film now, and also reading some more of his books! That evening we watched Infamous – the second Truman Capote film of 2 years ago! It was really good, and although covered much of the same material as Capote have a very different tone and spin on the story. I would be interested to watch them both together and compare them, I would hate to judge which I prefer at this stage.

Thursday we met up with Nick and Sarah at Wagamama (2-4-1 vouchers!) and then caught up with each other with a few drinks.

Friday was spent in eating some of the nice food we had bought at Darts farm, then we watched a French film on DVD called My Best Friend, a film about a person who realised he has no friends, and tries to discover what makes friendship and how to go about making friends. Perhaps not the most original idea, but rather charming and enjoyable all the same. In fact many of the themes of the film are dealt with in The Remains of the Day, both have central characters that have no depth of relationships and feel awkward in social situations, in both they discover something of what friendship is, and think that the social skills to make friends can be “learnt” in some way.

Yesterday afternoon was a pottering around day, managed to get the internet (and the BBC iplayer) working on the Wii (to an extent anyway!) and ate way too much dinner!

That was my week, I will try and blog before next Sunday, but no promises…

Ivonne is back…

Ivonne came back this week, and it has been a really manic week!

Sunday night was film night at Russ and Marg’s, The assasination of Jesse James by the coward Robert Ford, I thought that parts of the film were boring, and the story could have been told in a slightly more concise way, and I also thought the most interesting part (the part after the assasination) should have been the main part of the film, and some of the build up could have been cut down. Having said that the more I think about the film the more I like it!

Monday night was poker night at the City Gate pub, after a stonking start with triple Jacks I slowly lost my chips, but Dennis managed to get second place!

Tuesday night I picked up Ivonne from the station, and then Wednesday afternoon we went for a drive down to Budleigh Salterton…

neil in budleigh

Thursday evening was spent in the Mill on the Exe with Darren and Dave, and Friday we watched The Shipping News, which I actually really liked.

After work yesterday we went to the Exeter Food Festival and ate plenty of samples and drank a few glasses of local cider! We now have nice sausages, mustard, fruit juices and piles of leaflets to get through!

Today I am staying in bed, first lie in for a week! Has been manic at work with the new tax year with opening ISAs and printing tax certificates, I just hope it calms down a little next week.

Sunday Morning…

… I could lie in this morning, but no, I woke up at 6.30am! It is typical!

I went asleep listening to Garrison Keillor on BBC7, and fell asleep half way through, I woke up this morning just in time to catch the repeat at about the point I fell asleep! I am now listening to old episodes at the Prairie Home Companion website. I love the humour, it is almost so gentle you don’t notice it, but you are left with a warm feeling.

Grand Prix later (Go Kubica!), and then film night is Russ’ little cinema, and then only 2 days until Ivonne is back!

Rubbish Facebook Adverts…

… “Quite Funny”, not the best the say to sell your product, but that is what this Facebook advert boldly asserts.

Boring advert

Although at least I did actually notice it, more that you can say for most Facebook adverts.

Went into a bookmakers to day for the first time ever in my life (for the Grand National, and only because I want to beat Dave at work by picking the winning horse…). What a scary place they are, I have a new respect for gambling addicts now, it must take a lot of will power to hang out in those places all day!*

Actually the staff in South Street Ladbrookes were very kind to me, I clearly had no idea what I was doing and they helped me fill out the betting slip and had great customer service skills, so well done them, it must be a thankless job.

Well here we are…

…an evening in doing nothing, how lovely.

So what has happened? Well Ivonne went away last week after a weekend celebrating her birthday, we had a lovely (although pricy) meal at Harrys Grill and Bar. Worth the money on a special occasion though – as long as you like beef!

SO all on my own in the flat, just been meeting friends in the pub, playing poker badly (in the pub!), watching films at home (Rounders and Raising Arizona so far), and generally not been quite sleeping well enough and not training enough for the Great West Run. Work is cool though, and the flat is looking stunningly tidy!

Oh, and can anyone tell me what “PDQ” stands for? There is a reason for asking this…

SPCK Online…

…This amused me, I am adding no further comment…

spck unsafe Google

and…

spck unsafe

I will update this blog properly soon, I promise. Maybe even tonight – the first evening for ages I have no plans!