Tuesday, 31 March 2009

STCW95 Day Two. Nice Flares Are those Tears?

This morning we let off a series of pyrotechnics. There were two different types; orange smoke flares and molten red light flares. I elected for a smoke flare and with my best statue of liberty pose smoked out all of my class downwind.



The next section of out day was spent leaping into progressively colder water in a variety of safety clothing. Swimming with a full ensemble of clothing poses it's own challenges. Swimming in an immersion suit is down right hilarious. But not as hilarious as when you finally get out of your water and discover you hands and feet have swelled to enormous sizes encased in warm salty water and neoprene.

The real action part of the day was learning how to flip an upside down life raft and enter one wearing a life jacket in groups of three. Then as a full group we all donned life jackets. Our tutor dutifully singled out my wife to be nominated for a task. As all good husbands should I thought she would be elected the leader of our pod of floaters. Sadly she was to simulate being disabled which caused me much merriment. It was with much joy that I dragged her head first towards the life raft announcing to all and sundry that she was handicapped and to be wary.

Thus ended our practical part of the day. We returned to base to clean down our equipment and watch a horrifying documentary about a group of five sailors who had gone down in the Atlantic.

-They lost the only life raft and provisions
-They had one inflatable dinghy
-They had one person severely injured
-They had no paddles or signalling equipment

Two of the guys drank sea water and got incredibly crazy and ended up getting eaten by sharks after swimming towards imaginary safety. The girl with injuries died from shock after flipping out in the middle of the night.

One guy and a girl survived to suffer the ultimate American shame. They were rescued by Russian fishermen and made mention of this.

I'm sorry but If I ever find myself in such a position I will not be fussy.

Monday, 30 March 2009

STCW95 Day One. Thank the Titanic

Rising early and getting to our course venue with plenty of time to spare allowed us to scope out valuable amenities like the basketball court and microwaves. Our class size is small, fifteen. Our tutor is an affable character and our lessons are well paced with only a hint of slumber entering my mind at about 1:50 pm.

Our first day was spent learning about surviving at sea and the different technologies that are used in facilitating rescues and long periods cooped up in a life vessel. One of the more interesting things learned was the Titanic disaster expedited most of the our modern day sea emergency procedures. Who would have thought a block busting movie could have made such a huge impact? I shouldn't joke.

I really shouldn't joke because on leaving today's course we found that a large fast moving iceberg had jolted our car into a van causing considerable damage and carnage. Sadly icebergs leave little evidence when the sun is shining. We did find the remnants of a headlight and a hint of red paint. A suspiciously fitted out iceberg.

Tomorrow we have a practical day of swimming, righting inflatable life rafts and woe betide any iceberg that gets in my way.

Friday, 27 March 2009

Roadmap

From here on in things are going to get a bit bumpy. Next week I start my seven day sea safety course. Mind and fingers willing I should be able to find a bit to write about.

After that I will be back in Auckland for a few loose ends. On Thursday the 9th of April we leave for France. Given that Europe is not known for cheap internet access my updates are going to be less frequent.

The plus side of this hemispherical jolt is I will have a whole slew of new experiences to share. I'm probably going to be bursting at the seams before we get to Antibes.

Thanks as always for reading and being so supportive.

Donations are always welcome.

As is google ad clicking.

And Gin and Tonic.

Universal Airpoints

Having recently signed up for my fourth frequent flyer program I can only wish someone would take my latest business idea and make something of it.

A universal airpoint/rewards program.

I know this is at odds with loyalty systems but it does seem disingenuous to be carrying more than one frequent flyer card. Most systems allow you to transfer points between people. I have even noticed that I can transfer points from Emirates into my hotel club card and then into Air New Zealand.

I will wait patiently for this idea to bear fruit.









I am still waiting.....

Wednesday, 25 March 2009

People Watching

If you ever want to spot a writer in a crowded room; peer into the corners. Look for people listening. They might even be sitting by themselves. This is how I was last Thursday when I attended a pre wedding drinks for a couple of friends.

I turned up early, as is my style. I promptly ordered a gin and tonic and sat down by myself to soak up the atmosphere. The venue was the curiously named supper club. They do serve food but the bar is oddly shaped and it is hardly a club.

After carefully adjusting my antennae I began to listen in on the surrounding conversations. A very bedraggled lanky fellow acted as a foolcrum (so so clever) for the closest table. He had a funny tale of how he disappeared from the previous nights stag festivities.

He had got hungry and had decided to go to a 24 hour super market in a more than inebriated state. After traipsing the aisles for a length of time he hit a snag.

They did not have vegetarian pizzas!!!!!

Being a demanding and assertive man he had promptly decided to start asking some hard questions of the staff.

"Why are there no vegetarian pizzas?"

He received a range of carefully worded answers but no one could answer his one question. After a passage of time he was escalated to a manager. Then onto a security guard and then a taxi ride home. What a noble and dashing tale. Escorted out of a super market for demanding a vegetarian pizza.

He did have to pay the taxi fare.

Unsolicited Advice

On the whole I would have to say my friends and family have been very supportive of our choice to leap into the unknown and work on Super Yachts. Therefore it is probably prudent that I now quote myself.

"My advice to you, is to take your own advice" Daniel McConnell

If more people listened to my own advice instead of their own and then actually started listening to themselves I would not have to launch into my latest rant and provide unsolicited advice!!!!!

Anna and I have fielded some down right retarded advice and questions in the last couple of months. I can not fathom the intention of this other than to raise my ire and have me visualising lightening bolts shooting from my charged finger tips.

Sadly all of this poor advice has come from people who have never stepped foot on a Super Yacht. Many of them have never left the country. This is painfully obvious as I would guess some of them would not pass muster at a reject fruit bin in customs .

Typically the advice goes something like this. My more salient points are in italics.

"Do you have a job to go to?"

Sadly Yachts are floating apparatus's which move about on liquid. It is hard to prearrange work on them because they move from place to place. We will be going to the largest pleasure boat port in all of Europe so I think this will be of a benefit to us.

"Recession Recession Grumble Grumble"

Yes there is a recession. However Anna and I are incredibly lovable characters and fight off kidnapping plots daily. It is worth noting that no one really has job security at the moment. No one.

"My friend blah blah blah Cruise Ship"

Cruise ships are not Super Yachts.

"My friend is stupid"

Obviously.

I did actually get some cracking good information this morning from a chap at work who spent three years working on Super Yachts. He said it was necessary to get up early and walk the docks to find day work. He also said it was also de rigeur to hang out in bars to get to know different crews.

Early morning walks and bar hopping sounds horrible doesn't it?

Monday, 23 March 2009

I got hit by a car once

I had an oddly cognoscente moment this afternoon. I was crossing a busy section of the down town bus terminal when I paused for a micro second to reflect on the dangers of being a pedestrian. I was then set upon by a large bus. All I could do was skip merrily out of the way, thank my ever lucky stars and think how I could spin this into a story. I was very lucky not to have damaged the bus and in doing so hold up commuters.

Once upon a time I went on for a job interview. As usual I parked miles away from my eventual target. Doing so allows me to carry out valuable reconnaissance and plan an escape if there is an alien invasion or zombie virus breakout.

I was quite smitten with potential of the job. It was working for an all girls school in the IT department. Naturally I was quite excited as I would have had plenty of macs to play with. My first love is apple macs not girls.

Thinking about the interview I crossed the last road crossing before the school and just before the white lines I encountered a car which was traveling with some velocity. I dutifully gave way and proceeded to bounce off the bonnet and intensely scrutinize the road back first.

The driver of the car was awfully sorry and offered to ferry me to a hospital. In a bout of stupidity I turned him down " I had a job interview to make" I did take up an offer of a paper towel or three to clean my soiled hands and trousers.

In an elevated state of consciousness I bumbled my way through the interview. I made no mention of my accident and about thirty minutes later I scurried into my car and onto an emergency room. It was then I noticed I had blood all over my face. My interviewers had neglected to inform me of this slight. My passion and zealousness was obviously overwhelming.

Needless to say I did not get the job. I have not been hit by a vehicle since and intend to keep it it so. Today was odd in that sense. It seemed foreboding therefore I write.

Hair Styles of the Rich and ..........

A couple of events combined to inspire this entry. A colleague of mine in Wellington remarked on a super yacht docking at the waterfront. The local desk bound office population left their buildings in droves to ogle and my work mate commented on the women swooning at the deckhands. The deck hands were very tanned and had very long hair. I guess this super yacht was without a hairdresser. I shall be taking clippers with me.

The second event was visiting my Sister. My Sister had taken time out from ritually shaming people on face book with very ancient photographs to entertain us with a sumptuous meal. She also fitted us out with a DVD of a TV show called gossip girl. A teenage drama if focuses on a very wealthy slice of New York. I have given this show a very cursory viewing(my viewing is punctuated with cursing)

After musing on these events I have come up with a very compelling and tenuous link.

Why do the super wealthy have such abominable hair styles?

Admittedly I am not super wealthy but if you take the time to research this puzzling quandary you are only left with more questions. Baring entertainers the super rich are characterised with baffling boufants. Men in particular are striken with hairstyles that are badly in need of a chop. It is as if the common folk are left out of a joke. The men who lose hair do not take the opportunity to start afresh they fit themselves out with even worse hair styles.

Exhibit A.



On Sunday we visited a marina and I studiously noted the hair styles in an ad hoc survey. Again I was shocked to see the poor grooming on show. I look forward to further investigation. With a bit more evidence I should be able to publish a scientific paper of sorts.


Wednesday, 18 March 2009

A Quiet Drink of Tequila

Does such a thing exist? I fondly remember my first tequila experience. I think I did about six traditional shots of a particularly pungent brew. The next morning I woke encircling a toilet bowl in a suitably authentic frontier wagon arrangement.

Naturally affronted at such a rude awakening and I quickly exited the toilet to discover I had a new girlfriend. I could only blame this on the miraculous judgement impairing qualities of Tequila. Unfortunately my new girlfriend had arisen to start throwing beer bottles into a recycling bin. If ever there was a noise which can grievous pain to a hangover, it is the sound of glass smashing against itself. Sadly my new girlfriends voice was not much better than this noise. Tequila obviously alters human hearing in addition to impairing judgement.

What other drink is sold with a worm? I know of none. What other drink would, after drinking a portion make eating a worm seem like fun? Tequila. It is indeed a very strange set of circumstances that has lead me to staring down the bottle of two Tequila infused events.

Next Friday will see a Mexican themed farewell drinking session at my place of work. Tequila included. Secondly on the last Monday of our time in New Zealand will entail a birthday dinner at a Mexican cafe. Tequila compulsory.

I can't see either being a quiet drink of Tequila. So my question remains.

Has anyone successfully had a quiet drink of Tequila?

Tuesday, 17 March 2009

The Gaul of it

Authors preamble.

Collateral damage from continued workplace restructuring has left me with a somewhat swelling mailing list. As colleagues have left I have diligently signed them up for my almost daily digest. Now I am leaving I have started to add people who are staying behind. For new readers who were not around before my last adventure it was then I was struck with the sensation of treading water as I rapidly ran out of things to write about.This time around the treading water is more akin to drowning. Woe is me. Last night in my last vestiges of consciousness I did have a fantastic idea for a story. Please do not adjust your screens. This could be true......

Following a six month tenure on a large and luxurious yacht Anna and I decided we should really see a bit more of France. Financial and time limitations meant we only spent a couple of days in Paris. Antibes was thoroughly enjoyable but we had spent more time in other parts of Europe since.

Our grand plan was to purchase a suitably French car with a picnic hamper holder (boot) and wine bottle stands (door cubby holes) and drive in a both a lackadaisical and interested fashion across France to catalog and enjoy its essence.

Naturally we did not take any maps and our provisions were limited to bottles of wine, and a picnic hamper of cheeses, meats and French bread.

It was in the back of beyond that our soundly designed and engineered vehicle started to stage a revolution against us and we were left stuck under a large oak tree cursing with choice phrases learned from ten different countries.

Two bottles of wine and half a kilogram of cheese later our speech had developed a charming slur and the car had been forgotten about. Things were almost pleasant. We were intrigued to see a couple of very mustached locals getting closer.

I cant say these two people looked anything but normal. One of them was incredibly large, wore a pair of striped pants, green belt and had a pair of pig tails. He was also carrying an unfeasibly large rock. The smaller of the two was just as odd. Clothes from another century dotted his small frame he also had a hat of sorts with two large wings pointing skyward.

An exchange of greetings ensued. Sadly our French or lack there of let us down. I could have sworn they were intermingling French with Latin. Through some very expressive sign language the car was quickly identified as our problem. Neither of them had telephones. The smaller of the two muttered a few choice phrases at the large one. It was then that the Pig tailed fellow propped his rock up beside the oak and promptly lifted our car on top of his head and started walking off into the forest.

Naturally having your car towed in such an unconventional manner is very unsettling. We were left scrambling around picking up our impromptu lunch and followed the pair off into the forest. The big chap set a cracking pace and it wasn't long before we came upon civilization of sorts.

Imagine if you will a BC village with wooden fortifications. Plenty of people milling about. I actually think there was a mill. Our car was gently dropped down in front of the local mechanic. I say mechanic loosely because he appeared to be a blacksmithy antique dealer. He sized up our vehicle with a quizzical look and we were ushered off to a performance of sorts.

I say performance because the Artist was clearly not a musician. His comedy routine was painful and I struggle to think what he could have done in the Village that was useful. The audible squeals and accompaniment was a cacophony of pain.

Our gracious hosts then took us to visit the village elder. Clearly a live action role player he was dressed in a flowing white robe and went through a long and lengthy ritual before presenting us with a liqueur of sorts to take away with his. He was at pains to stress the strength of the liqueur with various gesticulations.

Our return visit to our car was mortifying. The engine and roof had been removed. The steering column had been replaced with a long rope and an assortment of bells. Straw had been stuffed into the seats to elevate us high enough to see........ a pair of shackled horses. My fear of horses are well documented. With the whole village surrounding us to celebrate us getting on the road again it took a herculean effort to stifle a scream of anguish at our circumstances.....

It was then I had an epiphany of sorts. This village was becoming increasingly familiar. It was in fact the last village in Gaul fighting the Roman invasion. They were stuck in a time warp or were we?

Thursday, 12 March 2009

A bold idea!

To be a person not named Frank being frank, writing my novel has not progressed at all. To borrow some management speak it is still in an early stage of development. Today I saw a quote which summed up my novel writing so far.

" I’m writing a book. I’ve got the page numbers done."
— Stephen Wright

I quickly adopted this quote as my message of the day. One of my loyal readers suggested I write my way around a novel by writing some glowing reviews ready to be quoted on the bound to be glossy inserts. A charming idea and one I took a bit further by thinking I could also write a press release, publishers acceptance letter and inevitable fan mail.

Brilliant.

I still have actually to write my novel but writing the immediate periphery is bound to be fun!

It might even give me a clue as to what I am writing my novel about.

Here is a taster.

"Daniel McConnell has come from nowhere with this book. A seething mass of imagery it practically overwhelms at every sentence. A good cardio work out, I was left breathless by the time I had finished reading the Author's own foreword. Breaking many rules, Daniel has defined his own genre which stands alone with little comparisons. A loose definition would be an erotically humorous science fiction thriller with a dash of psychedelic wanderings. But I am not the Author....... or am I?"

Digital Living

Not much happening in my real life at the moment so it is time to muse upon my digital one. Twitter seems to be catching on. I had an interesting sounding person add me on the weekend. His/Her handle is TheRudeTypist.

Naturally I felt a strange compulsion to find out who this rude typist is. It turns out they review blogs. Their blog is titled Ask And Ye Shall Receive

and the url is a poignantly penned

http://iwillfuckingtearyouapart.blogspot.com/

The reviews are well written and bluntly honest. The rude typist has an eye for design as well so blog aesthetics are well catered for. The ranking system is inventive and it is not since the golden age of Cliff Yablonski have I chortled in such a fashion at someone else's misfortune.

One small question remains....

Do I submit my blog?

Wednesday, 11 March 2009

Google Win!

Do you periodically google yourself?

I do. Unfortunately I have some name sakes who went to war and the Olympics. Kind of hard to compete with that at the moment. However I did notice today if I google "Daniel McConnell writing" this very blog comes up at the very top. So that is cause for celebration.

A more than cursory glance at statistics show me that most of the key word searches from this very website are the following.

Clickless mouse
Men Painting Nails

I am glad my name is a part of such an eccentric list.

Tuesday, 10 March 2009

Feeling Younger.....

A curious side effect of commuting this time of year is an increased feeling of youth. Let me explain.

The increasingly cooler climate has made slipping a hoodie over my business attire mandatory. Hoodies are marvellous devices and I fondly associate them with younger days traveling to school. Which takes me to my next point.

Public transport is densely populated with school aged people not yet in the middle of winters grind. If you take the time to listen you can hear tomorrows leaders pontificate on all manner of topics which are rarely very serious.

Slightly higher on the scale of scholars are the tertiary students who heft fantastically boring looking tomes. It pains me to see people reading books on statistical probabilities. It hurts not to laugh.

There is something to be said for taking your lunch to work with you as well. It is both reassuring and satisfying to know if my bus was to be swallowed by a trans dimensional wormhole I would have food to last me a while. This is surely a thought process I ruminated upon earlier in my life.

On a slightly more somber note; on this very bus ride I feel positively decrepit such are the ruddy faces which surround me in the aisles. Gladly I retain my seat safe in the knowledge that I am in fact an old person who people give up seats for. Age is truly relative.

Monday, 9 March 2009

Let Sleeping Dragons Sleep

Moot:

That falling asleep whilst watching a movie or show lying down is a perfectly normal thing to do and shouldn't be frowned upon.

Defense:

I enjoy watching movies and TV shows. Sometimes when I am feeling incredibly relaxed I watch them in a horizontal position. Sometimes after about thirty minutes a deliciously sleepy feeling passes up my spinal cord. This electrical charge starts to weigh heavy on my eyelids. Stifling a yawn I will stealthily start to close my eyes with rapidly increasing frequency. If I am careful enough I will drop into a deep coma and wake up directly as the movie finishes.

I say careful enough because I am often poked, prodded and belittled for falling asleep. I also have an annoying habit of being angry when woken from such states. I like to think of this as the Dragon effect. Dragons are bad tempered brutes especially when aroused from sleep. I am incredibly defensive in such states and say anything to protect my sloom.

"I am still awake"
"Why are you hitting me?"
"Leave me alone can't you see I am busy watching the movie?"

Naturally I am not a very popular person after these slips into slumber. Of course if the movie or tv show was really riveting I would not fall asleep. In fact I can safely say I have never not watched something that was really worth watching.

A Dragons lament. Maybe I could watch things sitting up? but I can't see any fun in that......

Friday, 6 March 2009

An excessively unfunny comedian

I caught the train to work today which was a first. Train rides home are usually boring affairs. The train was quite busy and I had to stand near the door. Compounding the experience I had left my headphones at home.

At the next stop a decidedly average looking man jumped on board who was to be anything but average. Imagine if you will someone with a stock car driver frame, a holden hat and a suspiciously bent looking nose.

Then imagine the very same man with the most explosive case of verbal diarrhea you have heard on a train in your life. Sizing up the nearest female he launched into some canine barking. This was to be later explained as something his idol Chris Angel does. Then seeing my uncovered ears he introduced himself as Andrew which means impaled by an angel (apparently).

Being a magnet for all things weird and wonderful we then shared a pole and a discussion of sorts lurched through a variety of subjects.

I could hardly contain my glee. Not since South East Asia has a subject gladly given me such beautiful material. With all of my considerable power I mentally transcribed the conversation for you my eager readers.

Dialog in bold is the funny chap. Dialog in italics are my own attempts to keep the conversation on target.

Big night then?

Nah got hit in the head though can you see it?

Yes I do think I can see something on your head.

Wow look at all of the people on this bus. Lots of children and people going to work. Its CRAZY.

Yes it is mass transport.

Yeah so I am a comedian in case you wondering why you are laughing. My whole family are comedians. My mum, my dad, my sisters, my granddad and my grandmother.

That is quite a hard profession to break into.

So do you play soccer?

No I do not play football.

You look like posh spice's boyfriend what sports are you into?

I enjoy Gaelic football and method writing

You have a shaved head it has a few bumps. Everyone who has a shaved head has a reason for it being shaved what is your reason?

..........

Bark Bark Woof Woof

At this point we stopped, the sea of full seats parted and my new found friend moved onto to torture another passenger. I kept a keen ear on proceedings....

The poor chap he sat beside had a book.

So you use your brain don't you?

Gotta use your brain!

Brains are like bones. If you didn't have them you would flop around like a mullet.

No offense of course.

It was with a wry smile that I got off the train with a female passenger who had been barked at. She was happy to be escaping. I remarked I would blog about the journey so something good would come of it. I think my last words were in the same been up all night drunken growl.

"No offense but I am a really offensive unfunny comedian"




Thursday, 5 March 2009

The Toilet Test

Do not look away. This is a serious diatribe on matters not of a ballistic nature. Years of ground breaking research have left me ready to share with you the secrets of the toilet test and what it means to you.

Nocturnal pleasure seekers know of the toilet test. They might not know they know but trust me they know.

An accurate gauge of relative inebriation, the toilet test is usually conducted whilst visiting a toilet. It is best to visit the toilet and make yourself familiar with it early in the night if it is not one that you know well. Pay attention to the flooring and especially your appearance in the mirror.

Now for the second stage. Lubricate yourself thoroughly with your poison of choice then revisit the restroom. Here are some common findings.

The floor patterns are shifting - You have had a hallucinogen
I am in the wrong sex toilet - You are incredibly drunk
I am having difficulty operating my clothing - Please read the instructions on your clothing tags
I look like a werewolf in the mirror -You have sprouted facial hair. Lower your oyster intake
I look like a vampire in the mirror -You have stayed up far too long. Please seek a coffin
I can't see my reflection - You have mistaken a flat surface for a mirror but it is not a mirror please re orientate.
I can't find the toilet - You are beyond drunk. Find your friends if they have not disowned you

With this information you can easily manipulate your energy input to pass the toilet test. Failing the toilet test can be unnerving. This is explains masquerade parties and novelty masks. It also explains why the best parties have toilet attendants. Just in case you know.

Tuesday, 3 March 2009

Inventorising

Ask any fervent fantasy book fan of a guilty reading pleasure and it is probably reading the section of the book right before the heroes embark on a quest. Typically the party members are listed with gloriously decadent descriptions of clothing, accessories and weapons. I did actually pen something before our last trip but to be honest it was probably overly exhaustive in detailing and I had one other small problem.

We took far too much stuff.

A beginners mistake. I was probably lugging a couple of kilos of gadgets I did not use. Clothing was hideously over represented and my choice pieces were pilfered anyway.

Preparedly, I took some time out on the weekend to document my new revised inventory. We shall see how things pan out in a couple of months or so.........

Items with a strike through are to be stored away and will not be making the trip this time.

I am still using my American/German pairing of portage devices

My wizards robe shall be on hand for castle photo opportunities.

One pair of jandals that have not made an attempt on my life yet.

One pair of sandals wtf was i thinking

Linen Thai fishing pants ditto

track pants seriously?

one raver t shirt with flashing lights omg dan you are really eccentric

Two pairs of shoes. One for walking. One for more social interactions.

3 singlets

2 T-shirts

2 pairs of shorts

1 pair of swimming togs

1 pair of jeans

1 belt

1 hoodie

1 sarong

1 Rain coat

Numerous pairs of socks and underwear some novelty, some serious

1 pair of sunglasses

1 pair of driving glasses

1 eee pc

1 portable hard drives

3 memory sticks

1 full sized mouse

1 toy cow

1 toy monkey

2 travel towels

1 toilet bag of toiletries

1 New Zealand writers handbook

Official papers, passports, loyalty cards and other miscellaneous items

There you have it. My entire catalog of things. Years in the future beings of light will pluck this entry out of the information energy ether and be astounded at how awesomely prepared I was.

The Gadget Arms Race

A couple of years ago, with a wry smile I coined the phrase partner phone envy. My wife had purchased a new phone and it was more feature complete and looked smarter than mine. Being a keen gadgeteer I was aggrieved and manipulated my finances so I could purchase a newer swisher phone.

Fast forward to last year and my wife again upgraded her phone to an iPhone. I was content to sit on my then current phone. Mysteriously it disappeared in Thailand and on our return to New Zealand I was able to upgrade my phone (it has twice the capacity of her phone, therefore is better)

Strangely her phone has developed a fault and I have promised her that we will upgrade it in June when the new iPhones hit the market. Now I am left pondering how I can slyly upgrade my phone and not seem like a jealous guy who can't handle his significant other having a better gadget.

A thickening plot.

Monday, 2 March 2009

VLC Version Angst

I have been using the video lan player from http://www.videolan.org for over three years now for watching movies and listening to music. Unfortunately the later versions have started to include a bit of bloat to improve the user interface. This feature creep has also caused performance problems. Large MKV and AVI files were image freezing with the audio continuing. This is really annoying.

The solution to this problem was to go back to version 8.0.

This post is informative, concise and not much else.

Double Faux Pas

On Saturday night I attended a my wifes sisters birthday dinner party. I was on best behavior and kept my razor sharp wit in check. After a few bottles of Beer Lao my mouth was sufficiently lubricated to make a few increasingly funny jokes.

Unfortunately the conversation lurched onto mental health for 15 minutes so I decided to lighten up the conversation and take the conversationalists somewhere else. After a sentence questioning; what happens mentally ill people who require full time care when their parents start to require care?

I proudly pumped my fist and said "they become politicians"

This was met with a few chuckles until I learned that one of the guests parents was a politician.

Not to worry I tried to save my messed opportunity and then pumped my fist again to decry "they become lawyers"

A few more giggled murmurs and I was soon to learn that the aggrieved child of a politician was in fact a practicing lawyer.

Oooops