Wednesday, August 27, 2008

A Weekend of Riotous Pleasure

A Country Affair - picture from official website

A Country Affair - what it really looked like

Near Pyrford Lock on the Wey canal

Over the weekend I got the spare room ready for family to stay, went into London and saw The Lion King, walked for an hour near Pyrford Lock and went to Hampton Court for A Country Affair. It might not sound like much but I have a suspected thyroid problem*, so it's left me knackered.

We go off to Italy on Saturday so I need to get my act together. Needless to say, I'm not getting any writing done. Mind you, it doesn't help that I chose now to learn Dvorak and I'm currently incompetent in both QWERTY which I'm forgetting and Dvorak which I've not quite picked up yet. Silly me.

*When I say "a suspected thyroid problem" I mean that I suspect it. In the UK the doctors will only diagnose a thyroid problem if your blood results are outside a reference range that's more restrictive than the ones used in the US and the rest of Europe. But that's a whole other story.

Wednesday, August 20, 2008


An Amazing Mind is always a good read and this week it has an interesting article about giving feedback. The advice being offered is that people learn best when feedback is purely positive and focusses on:
  • what the person got right (two thirds of the feedback)
  • points for improvement (phrased positively)
In a similar way, during my counselling course we were encouraged to give each other a "feedback sandwich" consisting of praise/suggestion/praise.

I was thinking about critiquing people's writing and how whatever you focus on is what you tend to do more of. It's really important to tell each other what we get right and not just to make helpful suggestions. But I think you all know that already.

Speed reading

I was reading the Sheldon blog and found a link to this speed reader.

It's a very strange experience using it and I wonder what it does for comprehension. The Sheldon site post says it is no use for comedy. I wonder if it will catch on for wading through slush piles.

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Not a blog

You've probably seen this before but it was updated in April: No one belongs here more than you. It's a most unusual website advertising a book. It reminds me of Sylvia's blog, which I read regularly. I love the combination of high and low tech.

It's worth clicking past any apparently blank pages. You know you've reached the end when you are back at the beginning again.

Monday, August 18, 2008

Kitten is poorly

Rufus had a cut on his neck (probably a bite from his sister) and because he kept scratching it it is now a sore place. We've been to the vets four times now and have an appointment again tomorrow - that cat is costing us a fortune.

I'm back but not for long.

Dvorak is cracked! I'm still making mistakes and I'm still going slower than a worm but all the short, common words are up to reasonable speed now so it's not a wholly painful process to write anything.

I've got until Thursday to post as much as I can because on Thursday the family arrives: my husband's cousin and her husband. I think I might need to be internet-free for five days to be sociable. (Gulp!) They are wonderful people and we've got lots planned so I'm hoping the withdrawal symptoms won't be too painful.

Then on the 30th we go to Italy for two weeks. Yay! A week with my son and his fiancée and a week just husband and me. It's 10 degrees hotter over there than it is here which is great - I hate the cold.

I don't expect to have internet access and I shall miss you all. I hope you all miss me but I will be back.

Sunday, August 03, 2008

Something completely different

I was at a country fair today and met one of the inventors of the Ledal, which is the most amazing invention to make cycling safer. I have so often nearly hit invisible cyclists when I'm driving after dark that I got really excited and had to post it here.

In other news, I am still working on acquiring Dvorak skills and progress is still slow.

Saturday, August 02, 2008

You must read this story

Freedom is not... is a very funny look at where current trends are leading us. It's flash fiction (under 600 words) so it doesn't take long to read.
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