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I've followed the great exodus of many of my friends from livejournal here to Dreamwidth, spurred by the anti-LGBT potential of the new user agreement under Russian law.

I haven't actually used LJ in over five years, but it's nice to wander through it sometimes and wallow in nostalgia...
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OK, so I'm gritting my teeth and culling some of the graphic novels from our ever growing collection.
Thought I’d mention them here in case anyone was interested in taking them off our hands, otherwise I’m sure the local charity chops can cope with them…
• Buffy The Vampire Slayer - Season Eight volumes 1 to 6
• The Punisher (Garth Ennis run) - Welcome Back, Frank
• The Punisher (Garth Ennis run) - Army of One
• The Sandman – World’s End (ex-library copy)
• The Sandman – a game of you (ex-library copy)
• Origin – The True Story of Wolverine
Let me know if you’re interested.
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Hi everyone,

Pam and I are starting to pack prior to moving house in a couple of weeks time and amazingly we have discovered a few books we can bear to part company with. If anyone would like any of the below books let me know; if not they shall find their way to Oxfam at some point...

Terry Pratchett - Colour of Magic graphic novel
Terry Pratchett - Light Fantastic graphic novel
Charlie Owen - Bravo Jubilee
Victorian Age Vampire RPG
Old WoD Vampire - Cities of Darkness 2 (Berlin, Los Angeles)
Dark Ages Vampire - Road of Sin
Dark Ages Vampire - Road of the Beast
Where's Bin Laden? - a version of Where's Wally starring Bin Laden before America shot him in the face

On a related note, if anyone is at a loose end on Saturday 23rd July and would care to spend a few hours on Saturday morning lending a hand that would be much appreciated. We do have a man and a van turning up to deal with the bulk of it but a few extra hands certainly wouldn't go amiss. We'll buy you pizza!
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I would like to think that so many things wrong with the world would be better if everyone was better educated. I suspect I'm a little naive - there is plenty of evidence showing well-educated people can be utter bastards as well as ignorant people, but I'm sure it would still help alleviate a great deal of prejudice and misery.

I think education helps you respect yourself and your own abilities.

I don't think university suits everyone, but it was a great time for me and I feel very lucky to have been able to go at such little cost, unlike present and future young people today.

It's also a shame that there isn't more in the way of alternatives to university in terms of education in trades, etc. There are things out there, but they are apparently quite badly supported and it seems ridiculous to make university increasingly more expensive but not improve those alternatives.

I feel like I'm waffling a bit here... anyway, in short, education is awesome and everyone should have as much of it as we can afford:

http://www.boingboing.net/2011/03/09/tom-the-dancing-bug-39.html
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Not so much. Hard to when they're kind, generous people.
Ok, I might have yelled at my dad a bit when I was a teenager, but that was because he was incredibly annoying and loved being so!
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This one might actually take some thought.

I believe everyone should be free to live their live as they want, up until the point they impinge upon other people's ability to do the same.

I believe that it's better to accept when you're wrong with good grace and learn from the experience.

I believe that the world could be a fairer place and that we shouldn't be trapped by tradition and history.

I believe that feminism is still an issue in all countries around the world and that it's a shame that many people don't even understand what a feminist really is, as otherwise they wouldn't claim to not be one.

I believe the media we are forced to rely on for news are all too often lazy, misleading and unethical, and that it would be nice for this to not be the case.

I believe that complicated issues are all too often broken down into overly simple, polarised opposites, and that this doesn't help solve anything and just fuels further division along arbitrary political lines.

I believe I'm guilty of just that in this journal post, but hey, old habits die hard.

I believe that there is much to life we don't know or understand, and that it cheapens the mystery and beauty of the universe to make superstitious claims about what the answers are.

I believe that few things in life are as precious as good friends and family.

I believe that I could do more to make the world a better place.

I believe that if everyone believed as I do then the world would be a better place.

I don't believe that's likely to happen any time soon.
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Lows:
Getting burgled
Purchase of house falling through at the last moment
Failing driving tests (more so the second one)
Other friends having an even worse time of it than us!

Highs:
Buckland House
The Hill House (an awesome B&B in Herefordshire)
Christmas
Mortals LARP
Getting tied to a chair and electrocuted
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I avoid it largely out of habit. On those occasions I am exposed to it, it seems to be mostly as shit as it used to be. I'm sure there are some bands out there in the 'mainstream' that I would quite like, but I can't be bothered to wade through rivers of sonic sewage just to seek them out.

These days I mostly acquire new music though happenstance - a song on a film or TV soundtrack I like, a track played in a friend's car that catches my ear, a passing ice cream van tune... if it happens to be 'mainstream' that's fine by me. Popularity (or lack of) is not really a quality by which to determine if music appeals to you or not.
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We got some nice tall ones as wedding gifts. Already broke half of them sadly due to my amazing glass-shattering powers.
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I don't recall anything clearly enough to actually know if it could be my earliest memory. I dimly remember nursery school, and possibly being carried around the garden of the house I grew up in. I remember a birthday in a tent in Wales but couldn't say which.

It's all a bit fuzzy and vague really.
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I'm kind of happy living where I am to be honest. Plenty of places I'd like to visit...

I'd like to drive around vast swathes of the US on a road trip.

I'd like to visit Japan, Australia and New Zealand.

A part of me would love to visit some truly isolated wilderness... sadly the rest of me is shit scared by the idea!
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I've been waiting for a day that felt worth bullet pointing, but nothing came along... and then I acquired an unpleasant stomach affliction, so unless anyone wants to read a series of bullet points about that, let's just skip this one shall we?
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I'm attempting to have a bit of a clear out... anyone interested in any of these?

Films (all on VHS - does anyone still watch these?):

- The Haunting (1963 version)
- The Armour of God
- Police Story
- Late Night Shopping
- Ed Wood
- Igby Goes Down
- The Good, the Bad and the Ugly
- A Fistful of Dollars
- For a Few Dollars More
- Far From Heaven

CDs:
NIN - Pretty Hate Machine - Sold to [livejournal.com profile] satyrica!
Tori Amos - Under the Pink
Tori Amos - Little Earthquakes
The Crow soundtrack - Sold to [livejournal.com profile] babs181
Tori Amos - to venus and back
Tori Amos - StrangeLittleGirls
Fear Factory - Archetype
Fear Factory - Digimortal
Prodigy - Baby's Got a Temper (single)
Slipknot - Slipknot
Rage Against The Machine - Evil Empire - Sold to [livejournal.com profile] satyrica!
Machine Head - The Burning Red

Leave a comment if you're interested.
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I'll just play some stuff on my computer as that seems easiest. Am I supposed to comment on these or something? Seems boring not to say something...

1. Moby - a song off Play, an album for which all the writing is showing up in Chinese for some reason.
2. Tim Minchin - The Good Book from Ready for This?, which I downloaded only the other day cos he's funny.
3. Joy Division - Day of the Lords, for when you really need something to slit your wrists to.
4. Dire Straits - Tunnel of Love. I listened to Dire Straits a lot when I was a kid, and recently re-acuired some of their albums. A nostalgic pleasure that reminds me of listening to my walkman on holidays.
5. The Bonzo Dog Band - The Strain. A great old band with many hilarious and bizarre songs. This is sadly not one of their best.
6. Nine Inch Nails - Somewhat Damaged. I still remember the kick I got when I first listened to NIN, like nothing I'd ever heard.
7. Prick - I Got It Bad. Anyone ever heard/heard of this band? Didn't think so. They did a song way back that sounded like NIN, so I picked up the album and discovered that most of their stuff sounded very different. Years later I listened to the album again and discovered I liked it a lot more than I used to.
8. Jonathan Coulton - Stroller Town. Jonathan Coulton has done many funny, awesomely catchy songs. This is not one of them.
9. The Damage Manual - Bagman Damage (Mix). A side project of someone from Killing joke, I think. Can't really remember.
10. XTC - Bungalow. I was introduced to XTC by [livejournal.com profile] lucifermourning a few years back and rather liked them. The first album I heard (Skylarking) remains my favourite, but they have done many fine and slightly odd songs, er, including this one about a bungalow.
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First kiss? Uni, first year. I was utterly inexperienced and crippled by any interaction with girls (blame 5 years at a boys school which two years of interacting with girls in sixth form had entirely failed to cure me of) but somehow I painstakingly crept into someone else's affections and managed to get a snog at long last. Halle-fucking-lujah.

First love - Love is a tricky thing to pin down and I think only really comes after a long time. So instead I'll go with my first epic crush. Not my first crush by a long way, just the one that I really still remember: a beautiful girl I knew in Italy - friend of our family friends there - an incredibly striking Dutch/Italian girl who I got on with fabulously, had great long conversations with in which I made her laugh and smile and who I spectacularly failed to get off with and instead discovered that she had a long time boyfriend. But even now I look back on that soul-shattering, unbelievably tragic misery of crushed hope and love and lust with a nostalgic twinge. Ah, those were the days. Or maybe not.
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Much like the present, only with rocket packs and lasers and aliens and zombies and cthulhu and robots and jet skis and explosions and fruitbats and ice cream and teleporters and dinosaurs and tweed suits and paperclips and tea, oh yes there's always time for tea, and freaky japanese ghosts that crawl out of your tv and virtual reality and music and love and death and beauty and trombones and trains and tunnels and trolls and travel and excitment and really wild things and humour and balloons and plush toys and carnivals and poetry and shoes and sharks with fucking lasers for eyes, shit yeah, and resurrected great people of the past so you can ask Marilyn Mornoe about the great questions in life or maybe just have sex with Socrates, that would be awesome, and how about giant fucking sky guns that shoot food down at people so no-one goes hungry, and anyone who's being a jerk can get pelted with custard from orbit.


Or something like that.
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I guess the obvious answer to this would be my wedding day. Almost all of my family and friends gathered together in one place to celebrate my great taste in women. That was pretty satisfying.

But let's not forget that time I won a V:TES tournament!
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For this experiment I will need a computer, a copy of the daily horoscopes in today's Metro, a d12 and a glamorous assistant - in this case [livejournal.com profile] lucifermourning, who has kindly randomised and typed each horoscope without indicating which star sign they apply to. Now let's see which applies to me!

1: You don't seem to understand why a close one is acting so distant towards you There is much you are unaware of at this time but today's events give you a clue to a mystery, which is about to change your destiny.

This sounds quite exciting but sadly doesn't really apply.

2: Family is placing more than a few demands on you and you may find yourself exhausted as the last few weeks' changes take their toll on you. As one door closes and other one is aboput to open.

Well, [livejournal.com profile] lucifermourning has been a little more stressed lately because of job things so that could possible apply... not sure what doors are about to open and close though.

3: If you want to keep your reputation looking good in the eyes of those who matter, do not let your imagination get the better of you. Slow down and look at the big picture. Romance brings surprises.

Not letting my imagination get the better of me could apply to house hunting, although that's not particularly relevant to my reputation. Slow down and look at the big picture - when is that not applicable? No romantic surprises so far... hold on, let me check if [livejournal.com profile] lucifermourning has anything planned.

Nope, apparently not. :(

4: You've stopped communicating in love. If you're honest you'll admit that you were the one who first put up your barriers. Write down how you feel, it's the first step towards getting back what you had.

Erm, nope, we seem to be communicating fine.

5: You've entered a time of great learning and you must use it to your advantage. Don't be cruel to the younger generation who are going to be leaving themselves open to criticism for their actions.

Well, I had my first driving lesson today since I failed my test the other week, but can't say I learnt much - it's mostly practice at this point. I haven't been cruel to anyone younger than me either.

6: Travel plans beckon but they're not exactly what you had in mind. Why not allow yourself to be led for a change; it's the only way you'll get to see what a certain someone's really like.

I'm going trvaelling in April and May, it's true. [livejournal.com profile] lucifermourning is planning stuff as usual, so that's not really a change.

7: Take it slowly as far as romance is concerned or you could frighten the person away. You are going to have to try and build up some trust and understanding if you want a solid relationship.

Must not frighten wife into leaving me. Check.

8: Don't let those at work bully you into taking on a responsibility that will make you miserable. You have rights too, you know. Asserting your true position very politely is your key.

Ooh, ooh, there has been discussion of a bit more responsibilty at work. But my manager was perfectly ok with me letting her know if it turns into too much work. Hmm.

9: Keep in the good books of (starsign #11)'s over the coming days, as they seem to have business contacts that you will need to make that all important jump in your career and finances.

If I only knew the starsign of whoever the fuck this is talking about.

10: Someone is avoiding you. The only thing is that the reason for them doing so is different to what you think. Wait forty-eight hours. If you do, you'll be pleased by the truth that the stars reveal.

I haven't noticed anyone avoiding me, which makes it all the more difficult to guess what I think the reason for this person avoiding me could possibly be. Well, I'll have to wait and see how this pans out after the 48 hours are up. Hopefully the truth revealed by the stars will not be that they are right.

11: You've been living in the past. You seem to need to make sense of what happened in order to work out where you should go. Offers via text offer an alternative view, albeit a successful one.

No, I'm living in the present, although it is true that I have lived in the past. I haven't received a text in days, so the alternate view is successfully one of nothing. Oh I don't care anymore.

12: Many of your sign are not going to be able to stop yourself from flirting. Careful how far you go, or you may undo the respect you worked so hard to build up last month.

I haven't been flirting with anyone today, although I have spent most of it at home alone. I'll try and restrain myself at work tomorrow.

Well, I might have flirted with myself a bit...



I can't say that any of those really apply to my life at the moment. Number 8 had a better ring to it than most, but only because it seems like good advice rather than it being particularly relevant.

*drum roll*

And it turns out my horoscope was... Number 10! Amazing!
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It is possible that I am being slightly erratic with when I post for this meme, but hey, it doesn't say the days have to be consecutive, right?

30 interesting things seems like more of a challenge than I would've thought...

1. I can touch my nose with my tongue. When I was a kid I put this talent to use to make sure no snot went unwasted.
2. I totally failed to appear as a zombie in Sean of the Dead, although to be fair I was only on set for one day of filming.
3. Dylan Moran once threw a chocolate Viscount at my head. It's possible this fact is connected to 2 above.
4. I have an unfinished MA in Postmodernism due to kind of, er, losing interest and focus and stuff.
5. I once fell face first out of a moving car. Fortunately I rolled with it.
6. My maternal grandfather co-wrote the Skegness theme tune. He was never prosecuted.
7. My aunt's third husband was the actor Maurice Roeves. You might recall him as the guy who gets his heart cut out in a graphic scene in Last of the Mohicans. I do not know whether my aunt has seen the movie, but I suspect if she had she would have enjoyed it.
8. I worked for several years in a video rental store. It was pretty much like Clerks, although somehow I resisted the temptation to behave like Randall.
9. I spent a (very) brief period selling car insurance. Wait, that's not interesting at all. Does it make it more interesting if I confirm that selling insurance is exactly as unpleasant as you might imagine?
10. Dear god, only no. 10? How the hell am I supposed to keep this going? Ok, erm, how about - I'm colourblind.
11. Through a long and complicated process involving death, betrayal, a Japanese girl and chance meetings, Trent Reznor was made aware of my existence. I know it's ridiculous and makes me appear like a squealing little fanboy, but a part of me still marvels over it. Have never gotten to meet the guy sadly.
12. I share the same birthday as Tori Amos and Ray Bradbury.
13. I have ridden a Giant Tortoise.
14. Mine and [livejournal.com profile] lucifermourning's house was burgled last year. We met the gentleman responsible as he jumped out of our kitchen window saying "'scuse me". Nice of him to be so considerate.
15. I foiled a bag snatch last year when, in a bar in Bristol, I spotted a rather dodgy looking git grab a girl's purse. I walked over to where the girl was sitting and pointed this out to her, whereupon said git shat himself and protested it was some kind of misunderstanding. There was a surreal moment when everyone was at a loss about what to do next. Unfortunately by the time anyone summoned the wherewithall to fetch security, the thief had wandered off. If it ever happens to me again, I'll go and fetch security first, then point out something's been nicked!
16. I've failed two driving tests recently. Third time lucky?
17. I have written poetry. Worse, I meant it.
18. I wrote a song for a band one time, although I think there was only one gig outside of our living room that it got played at.
19. I do allotment gardening (although mostly under [livejournal.com profile] lucifermourning's direction).
20. I am easily emotionally affected (as in getting teary eyed and choked up) by films and books. And comics. And humourous cat pictures. Ok, maybe not that last one.
21. I'm allergic to cats and dogs but look forward to owning both one day.
22. I have permanently damaged lungs in the form of bronchiectasis thanks to a bout of pneumonia when I was 3. Oh, and asthma too.
23. I don't like fish. It tastes really bad (yes, all of them ok?). I like to think I might be allergic to it so I don't have to ever try to like it.
24. If I could change one thing about my wife it would be her aversion to onions.
25. I love ghost stories. Good ones that don't show too much.
26. I used to fence, and should make myself take it up again.
27. I once braved a snake attack in order to rescue a smurf.
28. I recently played world of warcrack and did not become re-addicted.
29. I loved the Fighting Fantasy solo gamebooks when I was younger (still do) and they got me into gaming. I can still recall the first 30 or so off by heart. Damn, why didn't I just use that for this list?
30. If you'd asked me 10 years ago if I wanted to get married and settle down, I would probably have said no. Now I couldn't be happier. Well, actually if I had a lot more money I'd be happier. And if there was world peace and prosperity. And... look, you know what I mean. I'm happy, ok?
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I know I have had moments in my life where I thought about suicide.

It never seemed like an option, though. Not because I always felt it was better to go on living, but more because of how selfish an act it seemed to me. Suicide could've ended my suffering, but inflicting such pain on my family and friends made me feel too guilty to ever seriously entertain it. I guess I'm lucky in that I had those people there as a reminder that there were plenty of things in life to be happy about.
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