2. Many cheers for Oxford winning the Boat Race! Admittedly Cambridge did seem to have the better technique, so under the weather conditions perhaps this is a victory that can be attributed 50% to the choice of stations, 40% to the amazing start and 10% to the presence of pumps on the boat. They all count!
3. I really enjoyed the Commonwealth Games, particularly the way they offered non-stop games coverage on BBC 1 overnight which reminded me of World Of Sport without the wrestling. Anyone else remember Breakfast in Brisbane, though, the BBC's coverage of the previous Australian Commonwealth Games in 1982? Was that the BBC's first national attempt at breakfast television?
4. rialtus and jumbach are participating in separate local events of the 2006 edition of the (US) National MS Society's annual walk, and rialtus is collecting sponsorship online, pledging to double whatever donations are made. Sounds like dangerously open-ended benevolence to me. Anyway, please consider giving generously. JKR would doubtless approve.
5. The 888.com Poker Nations Cup and PartyPoker European Open have been fantastic recently - two of the three best poker shows yet broadcast, for my money. The Poker Nations Cup also benefits from the best theme tune yet, which you can download from the composers' audio showreel; a portentous timpani roll winds up towards a swining guitar in what they call a "rock/electronic anthem". Not sure what I'd call it, other than "bloody good".
6. The Melbourne University Puzzle Hunt is over, and it was cracking fun, considerably helped by being on a great team. The puzzles started off being extremely accessible, which gets a big thumbs-up from me, and wound up approaching MIT standards by the end. Londoners may find this puzzle as lovely as I did, though I think it's a lovely puzzle rather than a great one because it's missing a bit of internal logic to tell you, well, which direction to take at each junction. Turns out that there is no such internal logic, which is a bit of a shame. Still a lovely puzzle, though.
7. daweaver came and visited me at the end of last week. I slept through the first three hours of his visit, fed him undercooked stir-fry, showed him that Ice Warriors was as spectacularly bad a show as we all remembered, made him repair my PC once I cavalierly decided to delete the video drivers from it (in an abortive attempt to get VCR-to-PC TV capture going) and made him solve puzzles for us the next day. Man, I know how to show people a good time. Anyway, Iain cracked said puzzle above in well under ten minutes, demonstrating again how smart he is.
8. I want to call someone "the 21st century version of Sid James", but I'm not quite sure exactly who is deserving of that lofty epithet. Are there any more deserving challengers for the title than Ricky Tomlinson?
9. There are signs in the centre of town which say "leave it and someone will thieve it", which remind me of how annoyingly irregular the English language is and how difficult it must be to learn. Consider the verbs "to believe" and "to thieve"; a belief is something that is believed, yet a thief is someone who thieves. Also note the absence of such words as believery or beleft.
10. I'm feeling thin these days, but I'm not feeling very light. Accordingly, I would like to lose a little extra weight. I eat lots of fruit and vegetables to this end; if I manage to get my five portions a day, then I'm doing pretty well towards eating well, as far as I'm concerned. My lunchbox at work normally consists of a salad sandwich, a banana, a pot of dried apricots for snacks, a bag of crisps, a two-finger KitKat and a Coke. The first three are generally good; the second three... well, there are improvements that could be made there.
Accordingly, I'm trying to consider whether I could cut down from regular Coke to a diet variety thereof. I have nothing against regular Coke and its drinkers, but I know enough people who have made the move to diet drinks and coped that it's an obvious option. The problem is that I don't like Diet Coke. Accordingly, I have bought little bottles of Diet Coke with Lime and Diet Coke with Cherry (why not "Diet Cherry Coke", like it used to be?) in an attempt to see whether they're nicer.
Besides, this strikes me as an excellent excuse to try out lambertman's old "review soft drinks through the medium of mugging for the camera" routine, which is (a) easily funny enough to rip off and (b) long enough ago that almost all of you won't remember it. Admittedly I know that I'm also ripping off Zzap! 64 as well, but that's a good thing. (Isn't it?)
My review of Diet Coke with Lime: not much taste to it, and what taste does exist tends to be aftertaste. The hint of lime is very weak; perhaps it's meant to be calcium lime rather than citrus lime, or something. But you're not here for the text, you're here for the silly photos.
I award Diet Coke with Lime:
PS Do I need a haircut and should the sideburns go? Meg gets the only vote on these matters.