Thursday, August 2nd, 2007 | car, holiday | No Comments

Last week wasn’t all that nice in places. We had a lovely note from some neighbours pushed through our door (when I say ‘lovely’ here, I actually mean ‘rude and insulting’ but I thought I’d enjoy the sarcasm a bit), shortly followed by finding that someone had slashed the roof of my car. I know I’ve been having some problems getting it running recently (with really helpful mechanics saying things like ‘we couldn’t find anything wrong with it’) but I felt this was going just a touch too far (again, that lovely sarcasm). So there were phone calls to the police, garage and insurance company and I’m still waiting for it all to be sorted out.

So it was a welcome relief to have a couple of days holiday at the start of the week (and of course for the major upturn in sunny weather!) We didn’t go abroad but just spent four days pottering around, enjoying being able to stay till closing on a Sunday night (amid cider fuelled discussions on Burning Man), to wake up slowly and spend time by the river in Barcombe, or laze about by the beach or Queens Park reading (The Vesuvius Club – fantastically funny). Of course, I was really rather silly and neglected to put sun cream on and so now have a rather fetching lobster coloured back which requires careful movement when dressing/sleeping. Still, I’m not complaining (much!) – there is sunshine after all.

But it was rather nice to go back to work yesterday (yes, I did really say that) feeling rested. And only another three weeks until the Man – which of course won’t be restful at all, but will most probably include further sun related issues.

on ticket sales, poker & a traitorous car

Friday, July 13th, 2007 | car, dConstruct | No Comments

It’s been a busy few weeks for me and possibly a bit too much burning of the candle at both ends. But it has also been a really exciting time. I’ve been busy organising more for dConstruct, tickets went on sale at 11am on Tuesday and sold out in an astounding 5 hours – an event suitably rewarded with a bottle of bubbly at Clearleft towers.

Yesterday evening was again time to celebrate the girl geekiness, at July’s Geek Girl Dinner. Denise Wilton gave a fantastic talk on designing web applications with character, something I find increasingly interesting. It got me thinking more about using language to appeal to your target audience. Quite rightly, banks shouldn’t be using “hey, you’ve just deposited some funds, cooool!” and if they did I suspect they would loose the trust of their users. Banks = serious.

However more social websites have a much freer reign when it comes to deciding on language and tone – do they want to appeal to teenagers, young adults, 30-somethings? The language and tone they use for each audience will be different, and will therefore not necessarily appeal to others outside this range.

I must try to catch Denise’s talk at dConstruct (dependent on my poor sleep deprived brain and generally running around in a gopher like fashion).

I also played my first game of poker, huddled round the meeting room table, beers in hand and delicious pizza to keep us going. I ended up £1.50 up, although Cath cleared up very efficiently… I just wonder if it was the old “let the first timer win, she’ll come back for more”.. But yes, I suspect there’ll be more Clearleft poker nights to come.

All this may lead you to believe that life is going good – and it is, apart from one thing. My traitor of a car. I laugh at the last garage I took it to (now I’ve stopped being very angry anyway) who claimed there was nothing wrong with it. Pah! I say. You take it out and wait for it to stall, stall, stall, stall, stall, refuse to start. Then you can cope with the panic and the trying to park it on a hill. So at present it’s sitting there, all forlorn, waiting for me to decide whether I can afford to fix it, sell it, or scrap it.

car trouble and late nights

Sunday, June 3rd, 2007 | car, futureplatforms, weekend | No Comments

It’s turning out to be an expensive month, first the car, then the washing machine, now the car again. A trip out to The Ram in Firle was scuppered this afternoon when, having got to the Kingston roundabout I realised that there was something most definitely wrong. This was after Tom found the passenger foot well filled with water (a leak from the soft top I think), and so had been bailing us out at 70mph. Limping home, the revs all over the place, the engine stalling or just loosing power I was a bag of nerves by the time we got back. I love my car, I don’t want to sell it, but Lord only knows how much it’s going to cost this time.

Fortunately the rest of the weekend has been spent either out in the glorious sunshine (yay, summer’s back), asleep (most necessary), or staying up all night at FP towers watching Most Haunted Live from the Eastern State Penitentiary (it was only for the Ghost Detector for your mobile, honest). American TV – what can I say? There are lots and lots of terrible adverts, the majority of which are still jingling around my head (especially the Campbell’s soup one! Ghastly!). I don’t remember much else, I was tired, there was wine, and we didn’t leave till 7am. Good fun though!


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