Thursday, November 29, 2012

Thought Bubble 2012

I went to Thought Bubble this year and it was ace!

Sadly we could only go on the Saturday and we had the world's most horrendous train journey back (ending in a taxi from Peterborough to Norwich, where the taxi driver didn't know where Norwich is.  I kid you not) but the day itself was fantastic.

I went dressed as Wonder Woman:
Instead of buying a WW symbol top I got an eagle necklace and wore that instead:
In case you can't see clearly, the gemstones are blue.

I felt like a bit of a charlie at first (for charlie, read fool) but quickly got over that.  There were a few other Wonder Woman there (including a roller derby Wondy) and some appropriately tall and lithe Wondys.  I was definitely the fat one. But I enjoyed it and I reckon there's room for a few fat Wonder Women in the world :)

Most of the day was spent trawling the stalls but we did get to go to 1 panel - comic and society. It wasn't quite what I expected (a political analysis of comics), and was more of a history of American comics.  Still, it was interesting, and I was proud that I already knew most of the superhero stuff he talked about, and I even knew some stuff the lecturer didn't! (such a nerd).

I spent 80 quid on comics (the boyfriend spent 60 quid) and I met lots of people I'd previously only chatted to on twitter, which was great.  I'll post reviews of each comic I bought and talk aboutt he creators and who I met as I do the reviews.  I'll also feature the best comics on New readers...

The stallholders were on the whole from the indie scene.  There were a few professionals, but I only got to chat briefly to Phil Noto because his table was empty at the same time as we were buying a Yanick Paquette Swamp Thing poster (Paquette and Noto were seated next to each other).  I would have brought comics for the professionals to sign but unfortunately they were all in boxes due to the imminent house move.  I bumped into a twitter friend Lee Hiley who I had met previously at London Super Comic Con in February, which was really cool.  Lee got an Impulse comic signed by Mark Waid and I got jealous.  Next year I shall bring stuff!

I also didn't get a copy of the Thought Bubble 2012 anthology.  So I shall order it from my local comic book shop instead.  We also didn't go to the British comics awards because we were tired and hungry and wanted food before getting our train back.

I am definitely going to go back to Thought Bubble next year, and for the full weekend.  I'd love to go to more panels and can only do that and comic shopping if I go for the full two days.

My next con to look forward to is the next London Super Comic Con where I shall gush at Peter David at be dressed as a Blue Lantern. :)

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Personal achievement unlocked!

So, I've been back at the gym.  I started back in November, went for about 1.5 weeks, then had nearly 2 weeks off due to being away from work and moving house.  Went back again a couple of days ago.

I'm doing the body balance and the body combat classes, and this Friday I am determined to go use the gym equipment, even though it terrifies me.

My personal achievement is that I can now do sit ups!  And a few press ups, and I can touch the floor with (mostly) straight legs.

I admittedly, I cannot do many sit ups/press ups, but given that before I rejoined the gym earlier this year I have never ever been able to to do any, even when I was previously a member, I'm well pleased with myself.  The press ups are full body ones too, not with the knees but with the toes.

My next goal is to be able to to the abs work for the full length of the track (about 4 minutes) and to be able to touch my toes/the floor without having done an hours exercise first.  A few leg stretches beforehand as warm up would make me happy.

Saturday, November 24, 2012

Free books and comics!

As mentioned in the previous posts, I'm clearing shelf space and getting rid of books and comics.

If you want any of these let me know and I'll just ask you to pay postage and donate some money towards one of the following charities:
The RSPB's Albatross campaign
Leeway Women's refuge

I have reviewed a couple of the comics on New readers..., and have added in links to the relevant reviews.

Email me on paicomics at yahoo dot co dot uk if you want any of these.

2. All Over the World and Other Stories
3. Semantics: Primes and Universals
4. You Don't Look Forty, Charlie Brown by Charles M. Schulz (Paperback, 1990)
5. I''ll Be Your Slave (Yaoi)
6. Antique Bakery Volume (yaoi)
7. Body Modification
8. Last Four Things
9. The Moon and Sandals Volume 2 (yaoi)
10. The Moon and the Sandals: Volume 1 (yaoi)
11. Iono-Sama Fanatics: Volume 1 (yuri)
12. Shinobu Kokoro (yaoi)
13. Something Wicked This Way Comes - Ray Bradbury
14. I am Legend by Richard Matheson (Paperback, 1999)
15. I, Coriander by Sally Gardner (Hardback, 2005)
16. Dragonslippers: This Is What An Abusive Relationship Looks Like
17. Collins World Atlas
18. Spiderman Annual: 2003 by Egmont Childrens Books (Hardback, 2002)
19. Red Sky At Night
20. Finding Serenity: Anti-Heroes, Lost Shepherds and Space Hookers in Joss Whedon's Firefly
21. Seven Seasons of Buffy: Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers Discuss Their Favorite Television Show
22. The Earthsea Quartet by Ursula K. Le Guin (Paperback, 1993)
23. Superman: The Ultimate Guide to the Man of Steel by Scott Beatty (Hardback, 2002)
24. Freddie & Me: A Coming of Age (Bohemian) Rhapsody
25. The Black Death: The Intimate Story of a Village in Crisis, 1345-50 by John Hatcher (Paperback, 2009)
26. The Other Wind: An Earthsea Novel by Ursula Le Guin (Hardback, 2002)
27. The Magicians' Guild by Trudi Canavan (Paperback, 2010)
28. The Mammoth Book of Travel in Dangerous Places by John Keay (Paperback, 2002)
29. Tales from Earthsea: Short Stories by Ursula Le Guin (Paperback, 2003)
30. With Her in Ourland: Sequel to Herland
31. Herland von Charlotte Perk Gilman (1979)
32. Fire Under the Snow
33. New Healing Herbs by Michael Castleman (Paperback, 2003)
34. Epics of Everyday Life: Encounters in a Changing Russia by Susan Richards (Hardback, 1990)
35. Listening to Trees by Thea Holly (Paperback, 2001)
36. Bad Science by Ben Goldacre

More free music!

I'm still desperately trying to get rid of my CDs and books that I don't listen to/read, without the hassle of putting them on ebay.  So as with yesterday's blog, if you want any of these CDs, let me know.  I'll send them to wherever you are, and may ask you to pay postage (it will be about 80p per disc I reckon) and possibly donate some money to a charity of my choice (ASN, the RSPB's Albatross campaign, or Leeway Women's refuge).

If you want any of these email me on paicomics at yahoo dot co dot uk.  Otherwise they are going to a charity shop.

Go on, do me a favour, take them off my hands.

A Perfect Circle - Mer de Noms
Afghan Whigs - 1965
Ash - Trailer
At the Drive in - 3 albums ( copied CD)
Audioslave - Out of Exile
Bad Religion - Stranger Than Fiction
Blondie - Parallel Lines
Buzzcocks - Another Music In A Different Kitchen
Clash, the - Sandinista
Clash, the - The Clash
Clash, The - Combat Rock
Dead 60s, The The Dead 60s
Decemberists - Picaresque
 Deftones - Deftones
Divine Comedy, the - A Short Album About Love
 Doors, the- The Doors
 Drugstore - Drugstore
Dubstar - Stars
Everclear - So Much for the Afterglow
Fat Wreck Chords compilations - Survival of the Fattest
Fat Wreck Chords compilations - Physical Fatness
Fat Wreck Chords compilations Honest Don's Greatest Shits
 Fat Wreck Chords compilations Fat Music for Fat People
Fear Factory - Obsolete
Flaming Lips, the - Clouds Taste Metallic
Gene - Rising for Sunset
Gin Blossoms - Follow You Down
Gladys Knight & the Pips Every Beat Of My Heart 
  Godsmack - Awake
Goldfrapp - Supernature
Goldfrapp - Black Cherry
Green Day Dookie
Green Day - 3069 Smoothed Out Slappy Hours
Green Day Shenanigans
Guano Apes - Don't Give Me Names
Inme - OvergrownEden
Jackson, Michael Bad
Jackson, Michael - Thriller
Johnny Boy - Johhny Boy
Juliana Hatfield - Beautiful Creature
Juliana Hatfield Juliana''s Pony
Kaiser Chiefs Employment
Kill II This Another Cross II Bare 
Lemonheads, the - Car Button Cloth
Lennox, Annie - Medusa
Less Than Jake - Borders & Boundaries
Lever - Mustard
LK - Graceless
Lurkers, the - Live in Berlin
Marilyn Manson - Smells Like Children
Marilyn Manson - Golden Age Of Grotesque
Marilyn Manson - Omega
Massive Attack - Rising Son
Mercury Rev - All Is Dream
Midget - Alco Pop
Mighty Mighty Bosstones, The A Jackknife To A Swan
Millencolin - Home from home
Moloko - Things to Make and Do
Morcheeba - Trigger Hippie
Morcheeba - Tape Loop
Morcheeba - The Music That We Hear
Morrisette, Alanis - Under Rug Swept
Movie Soundtrack - The Beavis and Butt-Head Experience
Movie Soundtrack - Boston Kickout
Muse - Origin Of Symmetry
Music, the Welcome to the North
My Ruin - Speak and Destroy
Nick Cave & the Bad Seeds - Murder Ballads
Nicolette Let No One Live Rent Free In Your Head
No Doubt - Tragic Kingdom
O'Connor, Sinead Am I Not Your Girl?
O'Connor, Sinead The Lion and the Cobra
Oasis - What's the Story Morning Glory?
Ocean Colour Scene Ocean Colour Scene 
Pennywise - About Time
Pixies - Doolittle
Pixies Surfer Rosa/Come on Pilgrim
Pixies - Complete B-Sides
Pixies Tromp Le Monde
Placebo - Without You I'm Nothing
Placebo - Black Market Music
Pretty Girls Make Graves - The New Romance
Primal Scream - Echo Dek
Public Enemy - Fear of A Black Planet
Queens of the Stone Age - Queens of the Stone Age
Queens of the Stone Age - Songs For The Deaf
Radiohead - My Iron Lung
Radiohead - The Bends
Ramones - Rocket to Russia
Ramones - We're Outta Here
Rancid - Indestructible
Raveonettes - Whip It On
Red Hot Chilli Peppers - Blood Sugar Sex Magik
Reed, Lou - Ecstasy
Regular Fries - Blueprint for a Higher Civilisation
Ruby - Short Staffed at the Gene Pool
Sebadoh - Sebadoh
Senseless Things - The first too many
Shelter Mantra
Shelter Beyond Planet Earth
Sick of it all - Live in a dive
Sidi Bou Said - Bodies
Silverchair Freak Show
Skindred - Babylon
Sleater-Kinney - Dig Me Out
Sleater-Kinney The Hot Rock
Slipknot - Slipknot
Smashing Pumpkins - Zero 
Soulwax - Much Against Everyone's Advice 
Space - Tin Planet
Stereo MCs - Connected
Strangelove - Another Night in
Strangelove - The Greatest Show On Earth
Sweet 75 - Sweet 75
Teenage Fanclub - Grand Prix
Teenage Fanclub - Man-Made
Thin Lizzy - Whiskey in the Jar
Tool - Opiate
Tura Satana - All Is Not Well
Vans compilation Off the Wall
Various Artists - Discovered
Various Artists - Punk O Rama – straight outta the pit
Various Artists - The Gone with the Wind of Punk Rock Samplers
Weezer - Blue Album
Winx - Left Above The Clouds
Zero - Simple Things 

Thursday, November 22, 2012

Free music!

Hi all.  I've not been around lately because I've been away with work and this week I moved house.  After the move I cleared out a lot of my CDs and books and am not getting rid of a lot.  Given that there's no point listing them on ebay I figured I'd see if anyone reading this wants any.  They are mostly a mix of metal, punk and indie (this list gives you an insight into my musical taste!)

All of the following are without cases, if actual albums, or in a plastic sleeve if copies.  The free promo cds are in their original sleeves.  I'll send them wherever you are, and may ask you to pay postage (it will be about 80p per disc I reckon) and possibly donate some money to a charity of my choice (ASN, the RSPB's Albatross campaign, or Leeway Women's refuge).

If you want any of these email me on paicomics at yahoo dot co dot uk
Otherwise the copied CDs are getting binned and the rest are going to a charity shop.

(edited to take out the claimed CDs)

ABC/ID records - The psychobilly singles collection (Album, Copy)
Astrid - Boy for you (Album, Actual)
Audioslave   - ??? (Album, Copy)
Bad Religion - The New america (Album, Copy)
Black, Frank - Pistoleros (Album, Actual)
Clint Boon Experience, The compact guide to pop music and space travel (Album, Actual)
Cop Out - Free compilation (Album, Actual)
Dark Star - Dark Star promo cd (Album, Actual)
Deftones Promo cd – no idea what album (Album, Actual)
Demented are go - ??  (Album, Copy)

DJ Shadow - Endtroducing (Album, Copy)
Doors - Greatest Hits (Album, Actual)
Doves - Lost Souls (Album, Actual)
Dubstar - The self same thing (Single, Actual)
Echo & the Bunnymen - What are you going to do with your life? (Album, Copy)
Evanescence - Fallen (Album, Copy)
Goya Dress - Rooms (Album, Actual)
 Hatfield, Juliana - Bonus enhanced CD for some album
Junkie XL - Big sounds of the drag (Album, Copy)
Kerrang - Pinnacle Independent noise (Album, Actual)
Live - Throwing Copper (Album, Copy)
Me First and the Gimme Gimmes - Have a ball/are a drag (Album, Copy)

Metal Hammer - Brutal bunch 3 (Album, Actual)
Metal Hammer - Killing Cuts 6 (Album, Actual)
Metal Hammer - Killing Cuts 4 (Album, Actual)
Metal Hammer - Hammered vol 6 (Album, Actual)
Moby - Play (Album, Actual)
New to Q - Free compilation (Actual)
Orton, Beth - Central Reservation (Album, Actual)
Orton, Beth - Trailer Park (Album, Actual)
Orton, Beth - Daybreaker (Album, Copy)
Patrick Jones - Commemoration & Amnesia (Album, Actual)
Pennywise - Straight Ahead (Album, Actual)
Placebo - Sleeping with ghosts (Album, Copy)
Prodgy - Music for the jilted generation (Album, Actual)
Punk compilation - Made by a friend (Album, Copy)
Punk compilation - Made by a friend (Album, Actual)
Radio Kerrang - Free compilation (Album, Actual)
Radio Kerrang - Free compilation (Album, Actual)
Radio Kerrang - Free compilation (Album, Actual)
Red Hot chilli peppers - By the way (Album, Copy)
Reel Big Fish - Why do they rock so hard (Album, Copy)
Reel Big Fish - Turn the radio off (Album, Copy)
REM -  don't know which, but it has everybody hurts on it (Album, Actual)
Rock Sounds - Free compilation (Album, Actual)
Scarfo - Alkaline (Album, Actual)
Sebadoh - III disc 1 (Album, Copy)
Segovia ( Album, Copy)
Shed 7 - ??? (Album, Copy)
Smashing Pumpkins - ??? It's the one with Siva and rhinoceros on (Album, Actual)
Soundgarden -??? (Album, Copy)
Soundgarden - Louder than Love (Album, Copy)
Sunday Times - freebie 30 years of punk (Album, Actual)
The Beach Boys -  Best of?? (Album, Copy)
Tura Satana - ??? (Album, Actual)
U2 - The best of (Album, Copy)
Velvet Revolver - Contraband (Album, Copy)
Weezer - The Green album (Album, Copy)

Sunday, November 11, 2012

Police and Crime Commisioners

The government, in their infinite wisdom, has decided that each UK county will now have their own elected police commissioner.

I think this is beyond stupid.  Admittedly, the only thing I know about police commissioners is all wrapped up in the character of Jim Gordon.  So off, I go to do some research.

Here is an article by the BBC on the folk standing for election in Norfolk.
It syas:
"PCCs, as they will be known, will be responsible for setting priorities for their police force, overseeing its budget and hiring the chief constable.
Those in the biggest force areas will get salaries of more than £100,000 and no prior police force experience is needed."

Emphasis mine.

How on earth can you set priorities for something and control a budget when you have no experience in the area?
Anyone running a regional cop shop should have experience of coppering.  It is ridiculous that candidates can have none.

The Tory candidate has more information on what the PCC job will do.  From it:
"Police Commissioner is a new job introduced by the Government to bring direct democratic accountability to England’s policing"
That will only work if the general public also knows about coppering.  if we really understand the process and can boot people out if they aren't doing right.  In reality, the general public (including myself) knows fuck all about coppering and will probably be impressed if the PCC makes a big noise about certain high profile crimes.

Coppering should not be subject to the democratic process, it doesn't work.  Coppering has other checks in it which on the whole work OK.  Certainly they won't be improved by a PCC.

Onto the candidate's election statements.

Jamie Athill, Conservative.  Oh fuck he's got 35 years military experience.  The army and the police force are entirely different things, and no one who is that embedded in the military should be let anywhere the police.  Just, no.  No way.

Stephen William Bett, Independent.  He's ex Tory. He pledges to keep party politics out of policing.  Which is a good start.  He says his priority crimes include:
drug dealing, sexual offences, domestic violence, hate crime and anti-social behaviour.
I'd quite like to know how he's going to deal with these.

On the plus side, he has actually had experience of coppering, as he's been on the Police Authority for 16 years, and spent the last 6 years as Chairman.  In all honesty, I have no idea how well he's done.  Norwich is one of the safest cities in the UK, with the lowest rate of crime.  Which is good, but I don't know how much of that is to do with effective policing, and how much to do with culture.

James Joyce, Liberal Democrat.  He's got an amazing bow tie.  But more importantly, he has been on the Police Authority for 7 years and has been Chairman of Norfolk Crimestoppers for the last 6 years.
So far it's looking like it will be either Joyce or Bett who will get my vote.

The website says:
His key priorities will include:

  • Cutting bureaucracy to help the police to spend more time out on the streets.
  • Targeting more resources on rape and domestic violence.
  • Developing community policing with new powers for communities to tackle anti-social behaviour.
  • Toughening up community sentencing.
  • Better support for the victims of crime and the expansion of restorative justice.
  • Closer cooperation between the police and other key local agencies, particularly health and social services.
He's specifically mentioned fighting rape and domestic violence.  I think he'll be more likely to get my vote.  Unfortunately he also talks about "driving out inefficiency".  I just feel that's an easy phrase anyone and everyone trots out and it doesn't really mean anything.

Steve Morphew, Labour.  Now, I used to work with his HR organisation so I feel like I do know him a bit.  He has no policing experience and spends a section of the election statement waffling on about peace of mind in regards to areas not linked to policing.  What has council tax got to do with the police force?

Then he says:
I am experienced in leading large public sector organisations, respecting the independence of professionals and holding senior officials to account. I have worked successfully in partnership with many organisations of differing political opinions and none. My overriding priority is, and must always be, your peace of mind.

Experience in large public sector organisations, respecting independence and everything else he talks about there is irrelevant to policing.  Particularly when he's up against candidates with actual POLICE EXPERIENCE.  I seem to recall that when he was leader of the City Council there was a housing scandal which forced him to resign.  I don't think I'll be voting for him

Lastly, Matthew James Smith, UKIP.  Oh christ.  He says he will (asterisks mine):
  • Will put the victim first and not the criminal*
  • Refuse to pander to political correctness or dangerous quota seeking systems**
  • Fight to get our Police force back on the front line and not stuck behind a desk filling in paperwork
  • To prioritise real Police over PCSO’s
  • To re-connect Police and local communities
*This doesn't happen. Ever.
**Political  correctness is about not insulting people through comments on their race/sexuality/gender/other inviolable things.  It should be considered good to not be rude.  I would be interested to know what quota seeking systems he is referring to and why they are dangerous.  I suspect they do not work as he thinks they work.

So there you have it.  Our candidates for chief copper.  I was considering not voting at all, because I think the whole thing is ridiculous.  And I think politicos should be kept well away from day to day policing.  But, I am rather keen on exercising my right to vote and now that I know 2 candidates have policing experience (of a sort) and one specifically mentions prioritising rape and domestic violence, I think I will vote for Mr Joyce.

Saturday, November 10, 2012

We are Norwich organise counter demonstration against racist EDL march

A racist fascist organisation called the English Defence League are marching in Norwich today, because they are upset that a man was selling Islamophobic, hate motivated leaflets.  Well boo fucking hoo.  It is, quite rightly, illegal to sell leaflets containing hate speech.  I was furious when I found out the EDL were marching in Norwich, and very pleased when I heard a counter march was being held by We Are Norwich.  But I'm not at the march, mostly because I heard there might be violence and I'm scared (also because I have house stuff to do, we may be moving soon).  I don't want to get caught up in the fights (if there are any).  But I'm also ashamed of myself for not going, because I'm giving in to their tactics.  If you give in to fear then they can spread and win.  That's not right.

But there you have it - I'm afeard, and I'm at home blogging about it, and not there.  I am following it on twitter though - search for #wearenorwich, and I'm very proud of my friends and everyone else who is there.

Fuck I'm still furious those bastards dare to turn up in my fucking city.  Piss off EDL.  We don't want you and we don't support you.  Go back to your poisonous little rock.

Monday, November 05, 2012

Comics review

I only got 1 real paper comci this week, but I did get a lot of digital ones.  Spoilers ahead for Ultimate Spider-Man 16.1, Ame-Comic Girls 1 to 8, Smallville 16-21 and Batman: L'il Gotham.

Sunday, November 04, 2012

A belated happy halloween!

I didn't get a Halloween post up in time.  Didn't even write one before the day.  It was on my mind though.  I'd been thinking about it's significance for the couple of weeks prior to it, but I didn't manage to celebrate in quite the style I wanted.  I was going to take some time out to remember those people I have known who have died, and I was going to make a dinner with pumpkin in, and cook a pumpkin pie, and carve a pumpkin.

As it happens I went and saw a friend after work, to pay back some money I owed and then we got to discussing work issues.  By the time I got home I only had time to do a pizza, and then at 8 we started on the pumpkin pie, and the first pastry went wrong, so we didn't finish till 10pm.

I did get my altar set up though:
Despite the fact I didn't celebrate as planned, I still feel it was a good day.  As many of you probably know pagans regards Halloween as the death of the year.  From that point of view, I was bloody glad when Halloween rolled around because this last year has been poxy.  I've been really stressed doing my BSL course and then my boyfriend had his bicycle accident 10 weeks ago.  And we're selling our house.  I was originallyhoping to move into the new place on Halloween (new house, new year, all the jazz) but delays upon delays has meant we still don't have a move date.  Argh.  So, I'm very glad it's a new year.  I feel re-energised, more optimistic, more relaxed.

I want to complete by remembering those who have died.  Caroline, Bill and Lily.  I miss you and wish I'd known you better.
May the road rise up to meet you
May the wind be always at your back
May the sun shine warm upon your face
And the rains fall soft upon your fields
Until we meet again
May Love hold you in the hollow of her hand

Saturday, November 03, 2012

Exercising my way to an Amazon body

I've decided to write about my time at the gym, and my exercise, and probably my wobbly body.  This is something I've deliberately steered away from before because I don't want to add to the scores of media dissecting weight and women's dissatisfaction with their bodies - that drive to always lose another 3lbs, no matter your current weight.  Also, I know at least one person reading this has an eating disorder which involved exercise, and I am conscious that I don't want to trigger them.
So, with that said, please don't feel the pressure to read if you think this topic may upset you.