Wednesday, December 28, 2005

Quick automotive update

Continuing the automotive news from South Carolina, here’s a picture of Dad changing Mom’s oil:

Mid-vacation post

Indeed, I made it to South Carolina (and thank you for the well-wishes in the comments). The Christmas Eve and Christmas festivities with the family were appropriately merry. You can see a few of my relatives showing off their gifts. Here’s George with his book about Charleston:

And Mac with his new hat:

The next day I saw some of my friends. Ashley and Travis and I got to hang out in Martin’s garage. It was awesome. We all enjoyed some truly delicious truffles that Travis had made (hooray for friends who’ve gone to culinary school):

In the meantime, Martin and his brother spent the evening lining his car with tin foil:

Friday, December 23, 2005

I’m off!

And I’m heading home! I’ll try to put up a few posts while I’m away, but the opportunities may be more scattered.

Happy holidays!

Thursday, December 22, 2005

The shortest day

Yesterday was the winter solstice—happy winter solstice, everyone! Here in London, sunrise was at 8:03 am, and sunset was at 3:52 pm (give or take, depending on the Google link you click on). This picture of a statue in front of the Royal Courts of Justice was taken around 3:45 pm (and it was completely dark by 4:30):

I’ve been complaining a good bit about the short days, but when I was looking up these numbers, I also looked up New York’s. In fact, the sun was up in New York a mere 45 minutes or so more on each end: sunrise at 7:16 am, sunset at 4:31 pm. But it’s an important 45 minutes. In Rock Hill, South Carolina, however, the sun was up a whopping 10 hours (nearly): sunrise at 7:28 am, sunset at 5:17 pm.

Science is fun.

And we all have it much better than these folks, of course, but still.

Wednesday, December 21, 2005

Zone 3

Yesterday evening after work, I went to visit my friend John in Chiswick, which is in Zone 3 on the tube. Which means it took me forever to get there. And then, as a final insult, I forgot to bring my camera. The horror!

And this morning, although workmen were supposed to come fix my bed, thus providing more photo opportunities, no one showed up. So I have only this picture of my temporary fix to the bed:

Tuesday, December 20, 2005

Beer and nuts

I was at work for most of yesterday, and nothing very photo-worthy happened. Last night I met up with Jaynna. We went out to a pub, hoping to find food, but the kitchen closed 5 minutes before we got there. They had only nuts. At least they were pistachios.

Monday, December 19, 2005

The shopping season

Yesterday I joined the huddled masses on Oxford Street, one of the main shopping areas of London. Just fighting your way through the crowds makes you feel a little successful. Of course, the lack of any Christmas shopping I managed to do sucked away the feelings of success. But I was able to get some much-needed shelves for my bathroom.

Sunday, December 18, 2005

Weekend glee

Friday night after work, I went out to meet a few people, and eventually wound up at a friend’s Christmas party. It began as a very grown-up, fancy Christmas party, with drinks, hors d’oeuvres, and admiration of the Christmas tree. It ended as a scattered display of exuberant dancing. A nice mix:

Saturday I watched a marathon of Battlestar Galactica episodes (the new one). We didn’t get all the way through the first season, but we came close. Disturbingly close. The stupor that resulted, unforunately, does not make for very interesting photographs.

Also—the Radio 1 disc jockey from Friday’s trivia question was Jimmy Saville. There wasn’t much clamoring for the answer, though. Perhaps it’s the wrong sort of suspense for this kind of forum.

Friday, December 16, 2005

Another cafeteria holiday

Yesterday, we had our Christmas Lunch in the cafeteria. The food line was decorated with greenery and gold decorations, and there was soft Christmas music playing.

There was a Christmas quiz, and we all got crackers (those tubes you pull apart with a pop that have things inside) that each had a prize, a joke and trivia question, and a paper crown. You can see the crowns on display here.

My joke was very British:
Q: What car is like a sausage?
A: An old banger!

This was my trivia question:
Q: Which former Radio 1 disc jockey and TV presenter also fought over 100 bouts as a Professional wrestler?

I’ll post the answer tomorrow. I need more suspense here.

Thursday, December 15, 2005

It’s the little things

Here, a red label and cap on milk means that it’s skim milk. Blue means that it’s whole.

Doesn’t that blow your mind?

Wednesday, December 14, 2005

Another new arrival

Last night I met up with my friend Debbie’s friend Jaynna—we went to a pub in my neighborhood. Jaynna just moved to London, too. In fact, she arrived yesterday morning. So I was the local expert. Excellent.

Tuesday, December 13, 2005

Street scene

Not a lot of action to report from yesterday. I thought I’d put a picture up of a street scene from near work, just to show that I occasionally go outside during the day. In fact, yesterday was a nice and sunny day, and I was trying to capture that. However, it’s getting more and more difficult to actually catch the daylight, as it continues to shorten. So this picture of the double-decker bus with the streetlights just coming on will have to do.

Monday, December 12, 2005


This weekend was the formal holiday party for work. Here are a few people looking happy and well-dressed. (I know some of the same people keep appearing in these pictures again and again, but what can I do? I just got here).

Saturday, December 10, 2005

Fully connected!!

Telewest was supposed to come sometime today between 8:00 am and 1:00 pm. And at 8:05 am, the doorbell rang. So now I have an internet connection and more television channels than I know what to do with. (I’ll be downgrading the service in 3 months, but it’s nice for now). And it means that all my readers (hi, Mom and Dad) get the benefit of an entry on Saturday. Crazy, man, crazy!

This is the guy that hooked up the connection:

Friday, December 09, 2005


I bought a tv last weekend. I knew I wouldn’t have many channels at first—the standard, no-frills television reception gives you five. (I’m getting cable this weekend).

My tv, however, gets a signal on only three channels. And two of them are BBC Two.

Wednesday, December 07, 2005

Hooray for business trips

Dionne, a college roommate of mine, and Simon, her husband (who’s British, by the way), were in town, thanks to Simon’s business trip. Lucky for me! I met them after work and we had dinner in a French restaurant. You can see how nicely the Christmas decorations go with the already-red velvet seating.

We did have to walk around a bit to find a pub for an after-dinner drink. Evidently, the new 24-hour drinking possibilities haven’t hit the Oxford Street area yet.

Monday, December 05, 2005

I feel smarter

This was a weekend packed with culture. Here are some of the highlights:

On Saturday, Jed and I went to the Royal Academy of Arts. I have no pictures from the museum itself, but this is the London Green Party parade that was happening right out front:

On Sunday, four of us went to the British Museum where we learned about, among other things, forgotten empires:

We had some trouble reading the inscriptions in the Egyptian exhibit, so we had to consult this:

We saw other old stuff, too:

And finally, Sunday night, I saw my friend Bernard perform as part of the London Gypsy Orchestra:

Friday, December 02, 2005

The boxes are taking over

I have my work cut out for me this weekend:

Thursday, December 01, 2005

Brick Lane

I finally went out to eat Indian food on Brick Lane, something I’d been meaning to do for a while. I also finally managed to meet up with Jed, who’s been unfortunately busy these past couple of weeks: