Tuesday, 31 May 2016

Bugger Canyon (Bognor Regis not included)

Today was a day with Jof, often easier than one with Bud. We had to go into town to pay in all that lovely loot from the school fayre and that's one thing about the gradual takeover by robots, they may be replacing us in the workplace but they sure don't complain when you pay in £200 in loose change. Grandad is worried that by the time I reach working age, robots will be so ubiquitous that unemployment will be the norm, so I should find myself an occupation that won't be done by an automated AI. So that's me sorted then, a thespian gardener with a sideline in blood and, er, tissue donation.
shoot em up first person shooter gamerAnyhoo, there we were in town so lunch at Marks and Spencer was a given, and then I used my stagecraft talents to sow the seeds of an idea in her mind about buying me the new Star Wars Battlefront X-box game that Best Bud Ben has, then I gave of some of my lifeblood, well, extracted some from the stone that is Jof, and I was a winner once more.
This game is totally brill. It's got lots of different theatres of war, you can be a first-person shooter in a starbase, you can fly X-wings in Beggar Canyon or the ice fields of Hoth, and I found the best place to hide in the jungle to kill Stormtroopers when they come out of their steel Sally-port die die rebel scum and the graphics are outta this world, those are some serious pixels, baby. It was lots better when Bud turned the volume on for me and all the time there are angry seagull noises and people going "Red Leader! Enemy fighters approaching your position!"
Jof even joined in and crashed repeatedly into the giant walking-dogs where lasers come out of their mouths and I laughed a lot but what a groovy mummy I have that plays X-box Join the Imperial Overlords and hopefully Ben and I can agree a joining-time and have a Wookiee shoot-'em-up party and OK I have a bit of a habit of using the DD-RR-RR-RR gun and lasering off the heads of my allies but that's just 'cos I'm epic.

Monday, 30 May 2016

Day Off (Logs not included)

ford mondeo estate boot full of scout camp fire logsThis was a proper day off, following the hectic day yesterday. I did 5 or 6 hours Minecrafting before I finally noticed at nearly 3pm that I hadn't eaten anything since lunch yesterday, one way of losing weight. Jof insisted I have the shower I missed yesterday and I got dressed because nice chap Steve who lives in our street had offered us some wood for the Scout camp-fire. He owns a Cub Scout so at least he'll benefit. We drove there even though it's on the same road and 6 of us did 3 trips each which was a full load and hooray! It only kept me off Minecraft for half an hour anyway.

Late for School!

grove place nursling southampton retirement communityToday was a Bank Holiday and the first day of half-term so I woke Jof up and castigated her for making me late for school.
Once this minor confusion had been resolved I ate a bacon sandwich and we trundled off to see Grandad. He is 87 tomorrow so this visit was scheduled on his only free day because retirement is proving a busy time for him.
grove place retirement communityWe strode the grounds of his latest manor house and went to the fitness complex where it was nice and warm and we hardly had to wait at all for the 2 remaining old crusty people to get bored and leave. I swam and dived and threw buoyancy aids around for at least 30 minutes, and got into the hot tub twice but there's a sign up saying over 18s only then it was time at the spa thank you ladies and gentlemen and Grandad taught me maths in the changing rooms while the others used the gym.
hythe pier ferry to southamptonWe try to go to new and interesting places and this one was no different as we drove through the New Forest to Hythe. This is, let's be fair, a very small place which zealously guards what history it has. It has only 2 main streets, one pedestrianized, but its own Police station, fire station, houses with build dates painted on the front such as 1739, 1808 etc, public toilets and a really big flashy marina with big walls around it.
We parked in Waitrose because they didn't seem to mind and found our target pub "The Lord Nelson" and the amusingly shaped bar wench took our food order and gave us the window seat. Normally we would have eaten outside with the sea view but this place is only 5 miles from Calshot Castle where I was stung by a wasp and I am still allergic to the idea of wasps even though it's not the right season.
The food and instant coffee was a little disappointing and I didn't finish my scampi but we were off to our next destination. Hythe is the proud owner of the 7th longest pier in Britain (640 metres) and has the oldest continuously operating pier railway in the world. The signs said we had to buy a ticket even to walk on the pier, that's £1.60 we won't see again, and we waited for the little trundling narrow-gauge train with the uniformed engine driver at both ends but we were there at the wrong time and it was practically quicker to walk anyway.
hythe pier ferry terminalThe very long thin pier is dotted with helpful signs about live rail do not climb barrier, deck boards need replacing so do not climb barrier, and bits of potted history such as the kings that have used the ferry, TE Lawrence of Arabia, D-Day invasions, Titanic liner and so forth. You can also buy a carved deck-board and some people have obviously bought more than one.
From the end (nice waiting room) you can see Calshot Castle, Netley castle (now luxury apartments) and lots of giant cruise ships. The ferry goes over to Southampton and we might very well come back here one day on the ferry.
alternate realities cyberspace worldsThe railway refused to come at the right time for us so we walked back and found Ewart Recreation Ground where there was a cricket match in progress. The players were quite happy and loud and we saw the bowler hand his pint of beer to the umpire so he could bowl, and a good few wickets went down as we stood there with a very decently sized crowd by the pavilion all with their pints of beer in the pleasant afternoon sun.
laughing children barbecuing thingsNext to it there is a swing-park and I climbed it and did the slides and the polygon-of-ropes and the zipline and Bud made me go too fast on the whizzy thing and then we went to Waitrose and bought wine and food for the barbecue, or as Grand-dad called it, the braaivleis, for he spent a lot of time in Africa. He taught me about Geography and which way the world turns and seasons using the globe, and I couldn't find Japan.
Dumping Granddad back at the manor, we picked up pine cones for the Scout campfire and drove home, where I spent no time at all before going to Elizabeth's house for the Random Barbecue.
Us kids hid in the front room all plugged into various tablets and occupying various cyber-realities whilst in the same room.
Ben and I had a rude text-battle until my tablet ran out of charge again and then we discovered the delights of the BBQ fire which had finished.
We cooked corks on sticks and offered them to the beery parents and then we invented Tyrone. He was a gestalt entity made of corks, bacon-fat, olive oil, chicken juice, coffee grounds and anything else we could find and we set fire to things in the abandoned BBQ and that kept us going for ages.

Saturday, 28 May 2016

A Man who can Get Things

portsmouth street art winston churchill avenueO Joy, how I love Saturdays. I woke up at 7 something but insisted on a bit more and was up for 815. Today I auditioned for the play "Wizard of Oz" and when I got to the theatre a full hour earlier than usual, Sydney was already there having kindly volunteered the free services of her long-suffering mother to work behind the bar for 5 hours, how thoughtful.
Scout-mate Flynn was also there with smaller simian-sibling "Cosmo", having been attracted by the possibility of worldwide fame. It was a tough 4-hour session with dancing and singing and miming and Cosmo hanging off my leg every time I tried to play the roary pugnacious lion being brave.
On the way home we saw what we think might be some street art near the Mucky Duck pub. Seemingly made of bits of trellis, it looks like a pile of pallets until you move into the right place and it's got a big love heart gap in the middle.
wood for scout camp fireStill my duties were not finished as with tired feet, we stopped at 2 houses and asked nicely if we could take the wood lying outside. Yes, a little unusual, but I am a man who can get things and I currently need wood for the Scout campfire, and people are only too happy to let us take it away for them. Normally they stack it up outside and hope for the magic bin-men to take it: I am that Bin-man.
Then Bud went to the pub which I thought was for me too, but you can't have everything. I retaliated by cycling up to see Ben on the Common and that's exactly where a bunch of unattached 10 year-olds should be, Jof sent the JBs to meet us and in the warm twilight, there was no better place.
7 1/2 pints later, we met back at the ranch and I might sleep well tonight, like Johnny who did a school trip to France on the overnight ferry so therefore didn't sleep for 2 days and had to play a football tournament today.

Friday, 27 May 2016

Queen Victoria Something

drive - on snowmobile Last night I was convinced I was going to see Queen Victoria or something to do with her, and it turned out to be a school visit to the Queen Elizabeth Country Park.
I have been to this wide open space before, and recommended the bathtime dinosaurs from the shop in this very blog. But I never remember so every visit is like the first, a good trick if you can do it. Even before we got on the giant coach one of us tripped over and head-butted the pavement causing a fractured skull which will require a brain transplant and a life wearing a bubble on her head. When we got there, the rules stated that you couldn't take pictures so I have no pictorial record of the day, an opportunity lost.
But we played Splat and I won one game, we played Bulldog and I won one game, we played tag with 28 people after we finished our treasure hunt an hour early, we built shelters in groups of 6 and ours was quite poor, the jugful of water (simulated rainstorm) soaked me and the brisk shaking (simulated adverse wind conditions) took out most of the walls.
relaxed boys with classroom plastic chairsWe had to climb the big hill to get to the wooden playpark at the top. I am led to believe that it is the equivalent of 27 storeys high, and once we'd got all the way down again I noticed I'd left my hat and coat somewhere but luckily the other class had picked it up so I didn't have to go mountaineering again.
Then the nasty cruel teacher (we all love him) said Oh dear we've forgotten to look at the water purification system at the top, we'd better go back and it turned out he was just trolling us, over the howls of anguish.
I wonder what delights will trundle along next on the conveyor belt of life. A cuddly toy? A hostess trolley? Maybe a fondue set and Blankety-Blank voice recognition system and contactless card payment module! Look at what you could have won, this lovely speedboat ...
My newest ambition is to go coin-hunting in the Trevi Fountain. Once Jof had got home and I'd forced her to make pasta with cheese sauce and bacon crunchies, we called our personal shopper to get luxury cake and actually, why bother to have ambitions when everything you need is right here.

Thursday, 26 May 2016

The time I'll never get back

lopophora williamsii peyote cactus floweringengrish funny lost in translationYou can tell spring is here, the cacti are flowering again.
Last night I failed to turn my light off as instructed (and agreed) and so I lost half of my screen-time for today, something about trust and doing what you've promised.
old joannas opposite south parade pier portsmouthI was slightly miffed about this, but far angrier about him actually remembering the punishment so I maintained Sulkmode for a while. But this dissipated after food and dissolved in the swimming pool and I used favourite backup #1 (a Schwarzenegger movie) to make up for the loss of Minecraft.
I hadn't seen the Running Man in months.
Incidentally, this is the site opposite the Pier where young people used to meet each other in venues such as 'Joanna's' and '5th Avenue' for beer and dancing, apparently.
This prime location was bought by a prominent businessman but due to its listed status, could not be redeveloped in the profitable way he wanted until it mysteriously burnt down one night, leaving it free to be turned into protected flats for the elderly.
That's what we need more of in Pompington, old people. So the crane is being constructed by another crane and they're obviously going to make a start.

Wednesday, 25 May 2016

Woodchips and Willies

cinnamon roll explodes in mans buttWhile playing Blind Maths (a bit like Pacman Maths, but blindfolded) one of the girls collided at speed with one of the boys who got a right old punch in the willocks. I, however, have a better internal map of the classroom with its many bench obstacles so have avoided such damage.
scree slope of woodchips in parkFor Wednesday Park we did do some ball-tag and footballing but nowadays we're the older kids (not including those nasty threatening much older kids) which makes our antics dangerous for the toddlers and I found it safer to go wood-chipping with LittleMax.
boy buried under pile of woodchips 
First, he buried me in woodchips and I had to hold my hoodie open to make an airspace, while he had to protect me from pedestrians who nearly trod on my prostrate yet invisible form. In a previous life I'd made a giant scree slope of woodchips so we reprised this feat and some random kid kicked it down and I used many descriptive terms about him, some of which are not biologically accurate.

Tuesday, 24 May 2016

Fete: A 4-Letter Word

stoned festival passed out funny failSchool is for learning. So today I learnt a new 4-letter word from an esteemed colleague, although it was in fact the same 4-letter word I learnt off a different colleague of approximately the same height only a month ago, but had forgotten. This is why schoolwork involves repetition, because sometimes our little minds leak and the facts have to be reinstalled. Incidentally, it's amusing how the shorter the word gets, the greater its value: John McLean can have as many Yippee Ki-Yay Feather-pluckers as he wants, but none of this one at all. Apparently it's quite old-fashioned, how quaint.
taiga ecosystem schoolworkFirst, we got to show off our work to those who are paying for it with all those lovely taxes. I stand here beneath my explanation of how life survives on the Taiga, which is nothing to do with fleas. Then it was the School Summer-Fayre, or Fete depending. Jof has been severely roped into helping out which is why I've been on several stalls now: this time all the kids were goaded, encouraged and coerced into helping by the official Nudge Unit so there were stalls everywhere which all needed float money and prizes and organization.
meon junior school portsmouth fayreI was on the Jarbola again but when we got there, it was already occupied, so we offered what little advice we had and pretty well bogged off again to win sweeties.
I found the pick-an-envelope stall where you pay for the privilege of choosing which envelope to open, knowing it contains a coin. I made a serious profit twice and took my booty (and the prize money) over to 3 other sweet stalls where I soon amassed a bagful of assorted teeth-damagers.
school summer fayre soak the teacher funMy teacher is a Good Sport and he volunteered to be the target for "Sponge a Teacher" which does not involve bedbaths but does involve aerial wet sponge attack. Of course this was a very popular stall and we all had a go, I got 2 headshots in my 6 attempts, not as good as I do on the Scout coconut shy at the Picnic-on-the-Green (only 2 weeks away) but it was cathartic nonetheless.
Jof had to stay late and sell burgers and collect oodles of cash but I went swimming and ate too much and watched True Lies. No quaint words there, either.

Monday, 23 May 2016


street furniture tit wobbles Today my phone had accepted some updates so it wanted an unlock password so Jof had to drive me to school. It's logical.
Today we set our worms free. This is not a naturist beachfront activity but a welcome chance for our surviving earthworms to have a new life underground. Some of them had not made it through the experience of being dug up and incarcerated in bottles by ten year-olds, but mine did and I released it to once more consume dead leaves in peace.
pink fairy cake with purple icing butterflyNormally I would choose to have 3 hours of Minecraft on the promise that I could do my homework on the 33rd of Octember but that option was not available at this time, so I did my homework and went to the Scouts AGM. This is one of the mandatory meetings that forms part of the Scouting calendar and you have to do it. You still have a handful of screaming toddlers ululating at each other across the room, but nowadays us Cub Scouts sit in a corner with our phones and tablets and whisper furiously about how many points we've got or look at this mod or look at what this girlie does if you use a proxy server to get around the parental controls.
5th portsmouth scout group AGM dib dibSo we were all ok and we dib dibbed a bit and discovered that many Beavers are starting and many Scouts won badges and that we need even more wood for the campfire and we've got new tents and then I had a pink cake with a purple butterfly on it but that didn't stop me eating it and getting to bed at almost 10 pm.

Sunday, 22 May 2016

Prolix: Boaty McBoatface

harvester restaurant eastern road portsmouthUp first again, which guarantees me access to the computer for those all-important Minecraft servers. Eventually, bacon sandwiches were served and the main crafting of the day began.
This was rudely interrupted by homework: the task was to write a super-descriptive paragraph about a deserted desert island with tangible atmosphere and a certain je ne sais quoi, like a Russ Abbott dance party. I wrote a very prolix passage in purple prose with dancing dolphins.
Frolicking cetaceans aside, once he'd gone for his run, Jof and I cycled up to the Harvester to munch, perchance to porg, which was lucky because tomorrow they're closing for a massive re-fit again. Apparently there'll be olives in the salad bar. But this time I had Fish Lumps and lots of normal salad, you can do very well there for the money, but it all went wrong at pudding time. I selected the Sundae, for it was Sunday.
royal carribbean international MS harmony of the seas in the solentIt turned out to be the adult Sundae, not the kiddie-sized one and I had trouble finishing it. Now, I am never knowingly under-consumed when it comes to chocolate products and I was steadfastly not going to be beaten but on the way home I nearly leaked.
Last week in Newsround at school, we learned about the world's largest cruise ship "Harmony of the seas" which has 23 swimming pools, ten-storey slides, 50 trees, a robot bartender, a theatre, 20 restaurants, 6000 people and 80-inch TV screens in some of the 43 kinds of suite called 'Virtual Balconies' because they're as big as the windows.
Today is her maiden voyage (to Rotterdam of all places) so we decided to drive to the seafront and witness this event, and call it Boaty McBoatface because that's more fun than Harmony of the Seas.
biggest cruise ship in the world
It was quite big. I took a lot of pictures for my phone wallpaper but they don't do it justice. Miraculously, all the local ferries came out and joined in, we had 2 international Brittany Ferries, a Condor, a container ship, a hovercraft, and numerous diverse smaller vessels all pretending they were on official business. We threw a few rocks at the seagulls and departed.

Saturday, 21 May 2016

The Octopus Dance

I like Saturdays: I saw Jof off to work and got Minecraft time before Bud got up a mere 4 hours after his normal weekday alarm-time. We had tasks to do before Acting so when Sydney arrived we barely had time to fire up the X-Box before we were outta here.
Us kids popped into Jof's work to ask for raffle tickets apparently but they couldn't find them, what a waste of Mining time. We got to Acting 2 minutes late because of this and ordered the special theatre hoodie (new uniform with added advertising) and got given lots of lines to learn from the Lion King and our parts for the next showcase. Meanwhile, ideas were forming in our little heads.
havant leisure centre poolDropping her off at her house, we lunched al presto which is very hurriedly, not outside. Then we picked her right up again and went to Havant to fight the inflatable in the pool. There was an unexpected age limit of 16 so Bud had to watch us fail dismally from the pool but we got the hang of it and completed 2 traverses. But we also had lots of time to show off silly dives to one another and the pool under the diving board (not allowed on the board during inflatable sessions) was 3M deep so I did lots of duck dives to the bottom and gosh it's great being an accomplished swimmer.
We also got thrown into the pool a few times by our pet slave and in the changing rooms afterwards we all looked at the tall chap who could only shout "Gobbledee-dee!" very loudly, daft as a brush but very, very happy. Then we looked at the soft play bit where I had a joint birthday party with Ben (and broke my arm with Poppy) and we might go there next, for it is indeed awesome.
On the way home I showed her the Octopus Dance in which you lean backwards and gyrate strangely with wobbly arms. During a school disco recently we all did a Mexican Wave of Octopi. Hmm. Octopus Rex Mexicane? Sounds like a royally fancy seafood dish.
I couldn't abandon her without at least 1 more hour of Minecraft so we mined happily, fuelled by biscuits and a pair-bonded desire for Redstone. Film night was 'Pixels' with added aliens and I powered-down my brain only slightly before midnight.

Friday, 20 May 2016

On the Trail of the Lonesome Pine (Groot 66)

truck hits cyclist at junctionIn a blow to my STEM hopes, we did absolutely no Science, Technology, Engineering or Maths today, just literacy, in which I polished off my second neat paragraph for the topic. At least I got to show'n'tell my Oxford Science book with its pictures of nuclear explosions, meteorite craters and gametes.
As usual, I enquired keenly if I had any jobs before Minecraft Time could begin, and it was a Cub Scout homework about local charities, easy peasy, Aronia-berry elixir squeezy. In other news, some of the seeds I planted last week have sprouted but they're still pretty small. None will be Lonesome Pines, Stout Oaks or Giant Redwoods, but once we get a new garden, who knows.

Thursday, 19 May 2016

A Punch to the BrainSTEM

t-shirt legend fail engrish
This was a much more energetic STEM study day. We walked miles and miles to the Girl's school with the big stage from a previous visit. It's just next to the church where we have the May Fayre and laser-stalk each other.
This was to see and use their new super laboratory so we had to wear aprons and safety specs of gigantic proportions still with bits of girlie hair attached. If you didn't wear the safety gear or could not stand up under its weight, you were out!
First the teacher lit a standard Bunsen burner and blew some custard powder near it. A huge roaring flame seared its way into the ceiling and our imaginations.
portsmouth city girls school science labIf any parent loses custard powder or deodorants tonight, it's because one of us is looking for a Bunsen burner. Then we suspended weights of various sizes in the middle of a strawberry whip and saw how long it took to rupture. The strawberry laces experienced catastrophic failure much earlier, for they are thinner.
Then we burnt stuff again, because uncontrolled oxidation is top of every boys' list. This time we burnt crisps of various sizes under a test tube with 25ml of water in it and saw what temperature rise it achieved before the fuel ran out: Monster Munch was the winner. And dipping a taper into a special chemical, we made sparklers! I had to dunk mine in the safety water when it wouldn't go out.
In PE I scored a home run using Gene's lucky bat, and in swimming I completed an underwater length twice, only 1 other person managed 1.

Wednesday, 18 May 2016

LaST EMirate Standing

person in mexican cafe lookalikeSTEM continues with biology. Puberty is our topic for next term but this was just as interesting. First we chopped up some onions as small as we could and shook up the whiffy shards with a special mixture of washing-up liquid and some kind of oily solvent. After filtration and leaving the gucky-looking pot for the rest of the day to clear, we looked through a giant microscope at the oil/water interface and you could see strands of DNA!
Then we watched some epic films about DNA, even I have some, although it's 37% alien. I liked the double-helical structure with the nobs sticking out, and theoretical discussions about cloning and Jurassic Park.
Then we put party hats over one eye and threw balls to each other. Now I really appreciate binocular vision, after stumbling around trying to pick up balls that had struck me in the chest as I caught handfuls of thin air. Nobody remembered to do the 2 party hats under the shirt thing until it was too late.
green metal hanging wheelWe have a game called Pac-Man Maths and the blind grabber has to try and capture all the schoolfriends and Child A did a whirling dervish impression, fell over some tables and punched Child B in the face.
Wednesday Park was touch and go for a while but enough about toilets. It was pretty empty so LittleMax and I swung on the Green Twister and I got a trailing foot in the groin more than once and we played some ball-tag and some swing-kicking and I gave up after about 70 minutes but it was worth it. Speaking to Grand-Dad, he taught me about units so more STEM knowledge there.

Tuesday, 17 May 2016

ST EMilio's Fire

crying girl trapped in vending machine funnyFor Day 2 of our STEM studies, we finished off our literacy projects and made our robots dance. My group were previously fast-tracked into robotics due to being awesome so we had a head start (as well as articulating joints, double-redundant power supplies with signal-stabilizing JFETs and an RFI-shielded CPU) and came top of the class with our routine of spin + gyrate strangely + move over there + spin while saying "Fantastic".
Then our 'Hemor-Droid' (as we didn't name him) invaded a Lego Police station and murdered 17 officers, men with families (not really).
Later, I had to do one homework. Taking the 'Design a Shelter' topic, I made a Minecraft shelter out of all the things you can find on a desert island such as sandstone blocks and pine trees, but I couldn't operate the screen-capture so actually had to draw one IRL, on actual paper, couldn't believe it. Naturally, this didn't count towards my 1 hour screentime.

Monday, 16 May 2016

STEM Cell 1

toddler vomits onto mothers head funnyIt is STEM week at school so we don't have to do any literacy or religion or any of that stuff. But today was Science day and we got to make our own rocket planes and shoot them across the playground with compressed air (mine plummeted) and they blew things up with liquid nitrogen and on Friday they will deploy a small tactical nuclear device.
The rocket car was very slow and we did the Lego Robot display and watched the guest scientist do lots of groovy experiments at over 600 degrees C.
But in the near future some of us will be going on a residential course which looks like one big adventure playcamp with obstacle courses and beaches and woodland activities and dormitories.
So we had a meeting in the afternoon where the teacher was very enthusiastic about his ambivalence. On the one hand, there's a tuck shop. But there will be laundry. There will be an earthquake challenge, but we have to work together. There will be showers, but you only get 3 minutes. There will be towels, but the girlies showers are next door so you'd better learn to wrap yourself. Apparently last year there were incidents.
preparatory meeting for stubbington study centreYou get 6 to a dorm, but there are Stand-By-Your-Beds inspections. You can take a torch, but not a tablet. You can eat as much as you want, but you have to work for it. There is a TV, but it's bicycle powered and the guy in the saddle can't see the screen. You can have a mouse, but you have to catch it first. You can buy a glove puppet, but it'll cost you 3 1/2 days' salary. You can feed the chickens, but only if you've learnt to make your bed.
It sounds like Borstal with Benefits, Benidorm with Bedtime Routines, Scout Camp with lessons, and we'll all love it.
In Scouts we did a treasure hunt in the park and I wore my 2 new badges although they've been sewn on lopsided.

Sunday, 15 May 2016

Minecraft: a Problem Flagged

milton park southseathings you come home with when drunkI got up at 0630, just 8 short hours after going to bed. Why, O why, I hear you cry, don't you need your beauty sleep to maintain those rugged good looks? Well no, because Minecraft is more important. I figure I can get a couple of hours in before anyone else is awake. I checked on Bud and he did manage to get home from Rickmansworth, although for some reason we are now the proud owners of a small plastic flag, such as one might find on a cricket pitch.
I did 20 minutes in the park and swung on the new green twister when it wasn't totally covered in pink girls, and climbed the metal house. Jof said I could earn some pocket money by helping tidy the garden, but I'm too clever for that as I know I get everything I demand anyway so I don't need money, like the Queen. I witnessed some seeds being planted in the big pot I commanded into existence, and that was me done and back in Blockworld.
tron boys losing touch with reality
And it was World-of-Cubecraft for the duration of the day. The JBs came round for 3 hours or so at my insistence and we all logged onto the same Minecraft world and worked as a team. So we were all in our own cuboid world, and yet no longer in this one as we sat apart in the same room, whilst simultaneously being together. Just one or 2 more leaps in technology and we may merge as one into the game, and cease to permanently exist IRL, like some kind of Tron crossover, where we have to provide digital grandkids for our bereaved parents, only to discover that the law does not recognize beneficiaries made of pixels.

Saturday, 14 May 2016

Reunion Island: A Shortened Script

plant pots and flowers in b&q portsmouthI am at acting
I plan to swim
Sydney may have to go home
Bud is in London drinking beer
Jof is allergic to children
After acting we bought some seeds for the garden and went to the leisure centre for swimming, but the timetable was a lie and we only got half an hour. I waited till 1030 but he still hadn't come home.

Friday, 13 May 2016

I'm Your Polish Dancer

playpark somersault funny failNormal people would say, what a lovely day, shame I had to spend it in school. But I don't mind, I was full of stories about friends: one had an infected finger and only the quick action of the doctor stopped the viral death spreading to her toes: one saved a boy's life in the Solent when he was swept out to sea on a rip tide, one went fossil-hunting and found the jawbone of a prehistoric fox, you know, all the boring stuff.
boy in pants with broomstickWe have all grown seedlings for our school project, and today was the deadline, take them home or they'll be scrapped off. Thus Ben awarded me his colony of mixed leguminous vegetables (seen here drenched in sunlight) with Illuminati imagery and we balanced them home successfully, and put them in the front garden which is the only place we've got enough depth of soil for runner beans, and we put a watering-canful of phostrogen-water on it to help it grow.
I particularly wanted to do a home project of flower seedlings so we got some John Innes Compost #1 which turned out to be quite heavy, lucky I was steering my scooter or I'd have had to help. In the garage we have an inspection pit for cars but as we don't do that kind of thing, we use it to store old plant pots etc so we got out a nice big long black one and I got a broomstick and did pole dancing in pants, as you do.
We couldn't find any deserving local shops that were still selling seeds so I shall have to visit big B&Q tomorrow.
Philosoraptor asks: if dodgy bankers are money launderers, are endangered animal smugglers monkey launderers?

Thursday, 12 May 2016

Driller Killers and Super Swimmers

engrish lost in translationIn an unusual move, at ten to midnight last night some kind workmen used a pneumatic drill for half an hour, to dig a trench in the road opposite my bedroom.
The galling thing was, they'd completely filled it in by the morning and removed all evidence so you couldn't even see what they'd done. I, of course didn't notice as I have been trained to sleep through it all, but I did wake up when the large map of the world on my wall detached itself from the Blu-Tack and dropped on my head at 4 in the morning.
northsea swimming club mountbatten centre portsmouthAt school we wrote up our ecological studies in neat. This means you have to concentrate on the transfer, because the research has been done, and the prose written. But you know how you can easily be distracted by a side conversation with your neighbour, and a word or 2 can accidentally be inserted right in the lipstick-around-the-middle of a sentence?
portsmouth northsea swimming club olympians and kidsWell, Child A was having a chat about rudeness during his neat write-up, finished the segment and presented it to the teacher for marking. In it, he had stated that the lowest level of the rainforest is called the undergrowth, which is where you find Ns, where N is a proscribed word we're not allowed to use, a euphemism could be Jungle Bunnies. Obviously he had to go straight to the Head Teacher, but given that he handed in the work in good faith thinking he'd done well, I declare it a collectible to be treasured forever, like a stamp where the plane has been printed upside down.
In swimming I won at diving and got a time of 1 minute 6 seconds for the set where everyone else got between 1 minute zero seconds and 1 minute 29. But in the lanes next to us were 3 Olympic athletes training for Rio, told you it was a good club. We got a picture with them.

Wednesday, 11 May 2016

Willy-Seed: a Rash Decision

teenagers steal cocaine failIn school we have been doing history with added training for the future, because you learn from the past. Rationing was introduced in the war due to food shortages and will be again after the Zombie Apocalypse: we had to plan a cooked meal using simple ingredients like potato, onion, spinach, Spam (sing the special song here) and pasta.
safety fence around unfinished building workIn my group 2 girls and I were getting along just fine with our recipe plans (apart from the spinach which has been relegated to a dip in the middle as we don't like it) but we had to accept a fourth person into our group. Child D looked up 'Rations' on the net but spelled it 'Rashes' and was presented with a big picture of a bottom with red bits on it, we couldn't delete the page quickly enough, reformat the hard drive, burn the school down etc.
But we did learn that Polar Bear livers are so high in Vitamin A that they're seriously toxic - a lesson for all us carnivorous hunter-gatherers.
ten year old boys footballersIn the park it was much more successful although the Jaffa cakes melted in the sun. Filling the unforgiving minutes, I arranged yet another Minecraft-related playdate in which the 'Seed' that controls how your random world will turn out was called 'Willy'. Apparently Willy-seed is great because of the cave systems and running water.
We're still not allowed on the new spinning-hanger because the rubber mat layer has not been fully installed. That didn't stop some older kids breaking through the fence, wouldn't catch me doing anything like that.

Tuesday, 10 May 2016

2 Pea or not 2 Pea

lost in translation funny fail slutAnother busy day at school: made up with my best friend, and in computer studies, found a new game called Atlas Runner. In it, you are an erratically bouncing potato and your mission is to leap benches without being made into chips, and without hitting and thereby exploding the birds flying overhead. If you make it past 200 metres you turn into a carrot. And this is education? Bring on University, by which time I may have graduated into a cantering Cantaloupe or a space-faring Jerusalem Artichoke.
We also did a game involving compasses where you orient yourselves repeatedly according to instructions (the blind shouting instructions to the deaf) and you die if you turn the wrong way or falter. I won.
pea seedlings science projectLater, 8 kids were busted for singing lewd songs in the playground and apparently someone has been seen entering an empty office building or builders' site, and stark warnings were issued over health and safety. Whenever I enter a derelict site or abandoned military installation, I'm always careful and take big torches.
Here is my science project, 2 peas in a cup. I have put "Maximum Capacity from Mungleton Industries" although where there's only an inch of compost in the bottom, it should probably be Minimum Capacity. I made a new corporate logo, an M in a Ripley Alien Xenomorph egg ready to erupt and hug your face affectionately. Yes, I do know what that is. Bud has issued me with a custard pots' worth of spare earth to help out the poor struggling peas. Some other students with giant runner bean seedlings got to take them home, one lasted about 3 1/2 seconds before being dropped in the playground.
Swimming was up at the big pool because of ongoing repairs to my normal pool. I didn't see Sydney because it's so big and crowded and we all had to fit into 2 lanes instead of our normal 4. But we did get to dive off the starting podiums (podia?).