Tale of the Wiggly Mug Tree

IMG_0530This is the story of a man who had a lovely Wiggly Mug Tree. It was neat, and functional and home to six regularly used cups. Then the children started to drink tea, but it was okay. One cup had to stand aside. That was a bit irritating but okay.

Then the man was gifted two Moomin cups. Not one but two. Dilemma. The Wiggly Mug Tree was full and the bench was cluttered and life was sad. What to do? Would the Moomin mugs have to go in the cupboard?

But wait. There are shops. The man visited all the shops but only found a single sad stiff and styless mug tree. Useless. Exhausted the man returned home.

But wait.  The internet. The man googled and trawled and finally found Wiggly Mug Tree for sale online. Joy. It was dispatched in a box and life for the man is now good. All the cups are snuggled up on the Wiggly Mug Trees, with a little space left over.

It is the small things in life that sometimes give the greatest pleasure.



Designated Survivor

I have just watched my first Netflix produced series. It is called Designated Survivor and had about 20 episodes. I came to it a little late so am not sure if it was all released as a whole but suspect it was. I didn’t ‘binge’ as it took me a few weeks to watch it all and a rarely watched more than two in a row but I guess that is as close as I will come to binge watching.

I know I am a late comer to the Netflix medium but I am now firmly encamped and don’t plan to leave anytime soon. This is a sign that Netflix and its brethren are mainstream. With FOXTEL entering the market in a more serous way and, by the way, NBN also arrived at home this week, I seriously wonder what remnant of free to air will remain over the next few years. Jury is still out but old media is in trouble. Perhaps one channel will be the designated survivor 🙂


Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell

I read Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell by Susanna Clarke a few years ago. It is notable for being a very, very long book. Unusual in this day and age to have been published as one tome and not in multiple volumes. However it was a very good read.

I am now listening to the audio book version, narrated by Simon Prebble, and enjoying every minute. I am not sure it will be everyone’s taste but it is beautifully written and the audio version is delightfully narrated.

I highly recommend.


Reflections on Harry Potter and the Cursed Child Special Rehearsal Edition Script 

No spoilers #keepallthesecrets but my comments are probably best read after you’ve read the script book. That is what I would do. I never read about a book or film if I am going to consume it.

  1. This is a script written by Jack Thorne based on a story by J.K Rowling, John Tiffany and Jack Thorne. It is not a new book by Rowling though it certainly contains Rowling in no small measure. But it isn’t an 8th Harry Potter book. It doesn’t read like a Harry Potter book and you can sense a different hand at play. 
  2. Even though it is a script I mostly forget this as I read it. Occasionally I would remember but mostly just chasing the next bit of plot distracted me.
  3. I was compelled to continue reading and finished it in the same day. 
  4. If you haven’t read all the other books in the series then this isn’t the place to start! This advice is true for all of the books and the script is even more dependent on you having a fully formed view of the Harry Potter story. I’d go so far as to say if you had only seen the films then you are only partially prepared for this. In my opinion.
  5. As a script it was very readable and a worthy addition to the Harry Potter cannon but it wasn’t necessary. I am pleased that Rowling has said she is now done with Harry Potter. It is always difficult to know when to stop and this is almost a step too far. I say almost because I suspect this is one hell of a great stage play and the script a pale imitation of the theatre experience. If the stage play convincingly depicts what happens in the script then the audience is in for a treat and I think there will be awards a plenty for the production. There was more than once when I thought ‘how are they going to do that on stage’. Magic indeed.
  6. I think that the prospect of conquering the stage was part of what drove Rowling to write the story and she has now done that. She is mastering script writing in Fantastic Beasts and is clearly not done with the wizarding world, and I am glad of that!
  7. I will go back and read the script again sometime and I’m sure the second reading will be different, as it always is. My reading of the other books will also be changed because I’ve had insight into Harry Potter 19 years later. So be it.

Making memories the old fashioned way

On my lunchtime walk today I saw a fall of autumn leaves on wet bricks. I see this every year and if the light is right it is eye catching and so I capture with my camera. For the memories (and to share).

Here it is. Enjoy.

On the weekend I attended the Perth Modern School & Rossmoyne Senior High School Combined Schools Music Concerts. This was a big event, the various wind bands, strings, orchestras and Chorales combined, rehearsed over two full day, dress rehearsed on the day and performed to two full Perth Concert Hall audiences. Audiences full of family and friends, the supporters and transporters and provendors of instruments and outfits.

Having this epic event in the Concert Hall meant no recording. Strictly no recording. The audience, who were used to recording at their school events and treasuring the memories were advised to make memories the old fashioned way, watch and listen, pay attention and remember.

I paid attention and the memories are great, if a little old fashioned. No recording to share 🙂

Lung transplant done at home

I have a TiVo digital video recorder that I bought some years ago and which is the bread and butter of my free to air television viewing. They are huge in the US but are no longer sold in Australia. I won’t bore you with its many qualities, except to say if I didn’t have it I’m not sure life would be worth living. IMHO the TiVo is brilliant.

However I’ve been having some trouble with the aging device and it has been randomly making alarming, very loud whirring noises, occasionally at 3am to our discomfit. I consulted the Internet, the local (very vestigial) support and a work colleague and fellow TiVo owner. All agreed that the fan was the likely culprit.

I decided to buy a new fan off the internet, finding a company in California with the reassuring name Weaknees who sold all the right parts for all the TiVo models, and it came via snail mail. It eventually arrived and all that was required was to remove a few screws and do the replacement.

It was like doing transplant surgery on the family dog. Nerve racking but ultimately…successful.

TiVo lives on for another day. New lungs. Hope it’s brain keeps ticking over.

Tales of a travelling librarian

Today I am attending a gathering of library colleagues at another University. The timing meant that it was easier to go straight there rather than go to work and then head off. 

I caught my usual train at the usual early time. It was drizzling.

I got off in the city and walked (mostly under cover) to a Dome cafe that I knew, in the city, open early and very spacious. I had a large coffee and did an hour’s work in comfort.

I walked from there through the central business district (and through the drizzle) to the central bus station. This is a temporary bus station as the new underground central station isn’t open yet. Needless to say the rain, dodgy pedestrian foot paths and unfamiliar territory were a challenge. But we all love a challenge, hey!

I got onto a bus that seemed to have the right number, spoke to the driver and after a brief trip through the northern side of the city I was off the bus and walking to the campus (through the drizzle).

No one (who knows me) will be surprised that I was an hour early or that I am sitting in the campus library as I type. Drying out, doing some work and dashing off a quick post!

Did I mention that it was raining?