The live/drunk tweet-along from Eurovision 2021

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Although I’ve been watching Eurovision since 2014 and commenting on Twitter as the evening progresses – both tasks aided with a supply of cider and snacks – I’ve only once pulled my comments off Twitter and turned them into a blog post, in 2017. Although, to be fair, in either 2018 or 2019 I didn’t make it through the entire show online because I hit a Twitter limit and was unable to post after that point, and in 2020 rain coronavirus stopped play.

So, really, I’ve only not done this once since then, or one and a half times if you want to count the year my commentary was brought to a premature halt. This year, however, I am once again doing what I did four years ago – turning my commentary into something easy to find and refer back to in future.

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This living Earth- a science fiction failure from school

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As a long-time fan of Gary Numan, I’m eagerly awaiting the arrival of his next album, Intruder, which is due for release this month. Intruder is a follow-up to his last album, the excellent Savage (Songs from a Broken World), in a more connected way than it simply being his next release; it looks at the same subject matter as Savage, but from a different point of view.

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Tales from the pandumbic – part 11

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Hi Gene, how’s your hygiene?

Today is apparently Global Hand-washing Day, so it’s the ideal day on which to talk about my portable washing kit – and why it exists in the first place.

I’ve always had a distrust of other people’s personal hand hygiene – and there are two particular examples that spring to mind of where that distrust brings itself to the fore:

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Tales from the pandumbic – part 10

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Delivering danger to your (neighbour’s) door!

Back in July, I purchased some items online from Asda, and at the final step, when faced with the delivery options, I chose a ‘named day’ for delivery. This costs a small amount more than standard delivery, but it ensures that the delivery will take place on the specified day. It meant I could select a day on which I would be home all day, rather than have the goods arrive when I’m not in.

Well, that’s how it’s supposed to work in theory – but what about in practice?

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Some adventure gaming nostalgia

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TL;DR: Two rubbish text adventures I wrote as a teenager are online

My business, Soft Rock Software, has existed for just over thirty years, but my programming – and my very first games – date back further still; all the way to my school days. Two games from that period before Soft Rock Software, and which for reasons below I consider my first two games, are now available to play in your favourite BBC Micro emulator. I therefore thought it might be fun to look at the history of those versions of the games – at least as well as I remember it, anyway!

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Tales from the pandumbic – part 9

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Don’t stand so close to me

It’s already mandatory to wear masks or face coverings on public transport here in the UK, and from 24th July it will also be mandatory to wear them in shops – and after a trip to the shop a few days ago, that date can’t come around soon enough for me.

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The grave of Scipio Africanus – an addendum

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When I looked into and wrote about the grave of Scipio Africanus last week, I left a couple of loose ends. In fact, because so much about Scipio is unknown, there are any number – but there were a couple of points in particular that I was thinking of. The recent vandalisation of the grave has reminded me to look again at those points.

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Desecration of a grave

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A couple of weeks ago, the statue of Edward Colston in central Bristol was pulled down and it reminded me of a local grave – that of (possibly freed) slave Scipio Africanus, which I first learnt about at school. I couldn’t remember very much about it, so I paid it a visit to grab a photograph, and then set about a little armchair research to remind myself of the detail and/or improve on what I may have been taught at school. I then wrote about it on this blog.

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The old Henbury School badge

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I began my recent post about the grave of Scipio Africanus with an explanation of how I first came to know of its existence – which was that while attending Henbury School, we visited the local St Mary’s Church and were shown the grave and given a little information about it. This was probably in the context of learning something about the slave trade.

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The grave of Scipio Africanus

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In light of recent events – in particular the statue of Edward Colston here in Bristol being pulled down and plunged into the harbour last weekend – I thought it might be worth taking a look at something not entirely unrelated: The grave of Scipio Africanus, situated in the churchyard of St Mary’s Church, Henbury, Bristol.

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