Sunday, December 24, 2006

Merry Christmas?

Well, we had the Sheffieldbikers christmas do the other day, which was pretty good, we all had lots to drink and denis got lots of shooting for the video done. Loads of beer was drank and lots of music was danced to, it was really cool.

I went to work on saturday, worked two hours of what I thought was an eight hour shift, only to be told that I had in fact booked the day off some six months earlier and had completely forgotten about it - not helped at all by the fact it wasn't on a printout of my holiday days. So I went home and had a nap.
I also got my bike on the road, after finding my keys in the stupidest of places a while ago. I was fortunate enough to get down to see my brother yesterday, but unfortunatley for me, my first ride out in months was on a freezing cold day, on the day the local team happened to be playing at home, resulting in massive tailbacks. While normally a bike can sail through traffic, the traffic was very severe indeed and I ended up sat in the middle of the road freezing my nuts off. Anyway...

My bike is all back on the road, just in time for christmas, and I've got a lovely sparkly purple (why did they choose purple?!) tax disc to fit onto her tomorrow, as her one and only christmas present.

My fitness continues to stay generally adequate although I am becoming progressively less skinny. Don't get me wrong if I lay down I can see my ribs, but if I'm sat up, I can't see my belt buckle very well. Time for some more exercise I reckon.

Well I've just said bye to my cousins and uncle and aunt, that side of the family, after spending a good 45 minutes showing off my computer to my younger cousins. Before that though, we've had a fairly decent family day - my nephew, sister, brother and brother's partner all came round, at which point I was conscripted into various family activities, such as baking with my nephew who has now learned to count up to 19 - admittedly once he gets past 12 he counts 16,15,19,14 but hey it's more than I did at that age. Probably.

Now these guys have a little christmas tradition, whereby every christmas eve, they send a dude round dressed as santa, on the back of a sleigh being towed by a pickup - not exactly 9 snorting gliding furry reindeer, but we always told my 2 year old nephew that this was because they were just sleeping ready for the long flight tonight - I think he bought it. Anyway, me and my mum, sister and brother's other half (sister in law or...?) came along to see this, and to take my nephew to see it, where he always gets given a brief audience with "santa" concluding in, in this case, a "chomp" chocolate bar.

Anyway, I was rambling on a bit there, but I suppose I'm winding down after a fairly pleasant family day, looking forward to tomorrow and in true christmas-eve fashion, not tired at all. So tomorrow we'll be doing the usual, might go out for a ride on the bike, but first of all I want to see my nephew open the presents i've got him - err, I mean Santa's got him. If he caught me saying that he'd be horrified hehe.

So now I'm going to go and do other random stuff, might grab some food, might get a drink or whatever, I fancy a nice bath and then going to bed. Looking forward to waking up tomorrow and spending a nice, well, pleasant-ish day with the family. If anyone is reading these blogs, and I'm not so certain that they are, while tomorrow will probably have been and gone long before you get round to reading the latest instalment (!), I hope you have/are having/had a very nice Christmas '06 too.

Merry Christmas.


Sunday, October 15, 2006

Yet another harebrained Idea?

Damn, I really need to write more on this thing...

Well, in the past month I've turned my work life around. It took a one to one meeting to get me to do it. My boss's colleague dragged me into a meeting room and tried, manager-style, to find out what was wrong with me, and why I wasn't performing.
I gave my honest opinion I guess, I was totally honest, and totally frank.

"There's no point working mate. I don't want to be here, I don't need this crap, It's just one bloody thing after another. Every damn thing goes wrong and a thousand little things annoy me from as soon as I get into the car park, right up until I get out of here, nine interminable hours later..."

And he says "You know what? You're right. I used to hate working here..." He really gave it the "but give it a go and you'll like it" treatment while I sat there thinking "yeah whatever"...

But I tried it, and it worked.
A second meeting followed, with my immediate boss, where I agreed I'd try my best to turn my flagging performance around. And yeah this is where I say that I performed badly and disappointed everyone? No. I became a superstar. I've got certificates, cans of beer, all sorts of random gifts to prove it, so now I know not only am I actually good at my job, but I'm very good at my job.

Which is a shame, because I'm leaving.

That's right. I'm packing the job in, come 2007 I'll be gone. Why? Because I've had a few revelations at home, seems things aren't as secure as I assumed they were. There are a few major changes in the pipeline, and it seems to have returned our family to the question of income and expense. I was offered a choice:

I stay: and help my family out by increasing my rent a little to cover some additional costs (nowhere near the money I cost my parents in bills, food etc...)

I go: Follow my heart, back into the Army, where I had some bloody amazing times, getting myself a new life in a different job, with different people, in a different county, maybe in a different country, AND I'd cut more than a third off the running costs of this place.

So I've decided to go. I'm using my gym privelidges at my current job to train for my new job. I'm on a diet, I've quit smoking, and I'm down in the gym every single day. When I feel ready, I'm gonna go and join the AAC.

I've never been more excited. It's a brand new carreer with brand new mates, and a totally new way of life. I'll get to work with the WAH-64 at some point if I'm lucky, and even if I never make pilot, it'll still be damn good to get back into the fold...

So that's what I'm training for now, that's what I work towards, as much as I can....

Hope to keep you updated...

Sunday, September 10, 2006

A long time has passed...

Wow. It's been a while since I put up anything on here. Why?
Well mostly laziness on my part. I got my new system up and running, which is okay.

To be honest, I've left the blog for so long that I can't remember many important details, but I'll give a brief summary;

I'm at the tail end of a 10 day holiday from work, my system has proved every bit as good as previously hoped. I've become increasingly disaffected with my job and am now seeking new employment opportunities.

In other news, work's speed humps snapped the exhaust on my bike. I am getting it repaired and am of course seeking legal advice, given the fact that I warned my employers that this would happen many weeks in advance.
And I've lost my keys. Like a true dickhead, I've lost the only set of keys to my bike.
I'll laugh about it in a year's time, sure I will. But until then, I face a period of massive inconvenience. Hopefully, my attempts to get the situation resolved will help anyone else in my position.

Well, I'm off to finish my cider. Part of celebrating the last free night that I have to myself.
At least until tuesday, when I'm going swimming with my family, which I'm looking forward to.

Stay safe, or die well.
Life's like that :).

Thursday, July 27, 2006

Things are moving on...

Recap: I've spent the past few months buying parts for my computer. I've tried to get some really good stuff and I'm almost ready to build a good spec pc to run the latest games, fast as lightning.
This computer should be assembled by the end of sunday the 30th.

Last night was strange. I was at the horse and jockey, speaking to Ross (the landlord) about my bike, and the general consensus was that the bike would be much better off at the track. After 20 minutes of alternatley ribbing me about the small size of the bike and its unsuitability to be a roadbike, and then praising the bike and telling me how fantastic it is and how good it looks, we got onto the subject of racing. At which point Ross made me a surprise deal.

He wants to pay to take me and the bike to cadwell park . He wants to pay the track fees, my fuel etc, everything. He wants to ride the RS round the track for a session. Then he wants me to do the same. If he beats my laptimes, I get a free trackday, no expenses at all.
If I beat his laptimes though, he wants to sponsor me, in his capacity as a mechanic. He's basically saying he wants me to race, and if I can beat him, he's gonna be my mechanic. He's got connections in the business that can sort me out with tyres, fuel etc...

He's said time and time again that he's twice as old (he's 42), twice as scared, and twice as slow, but I just reckon that that's "sense of security" stuff, and I don't come close to believing that bit.

Course, I've said yes, and the only question is when. I'm excited and scared at the same time, but if this works out, it could be what I've always wanted. Yes, he's practically offered it to me on a plate, but I've spoken to his other half, and his friends, and apparently he's deadly serious.
Maybe he knows I won't beat him and has nothing to lose, maybe he just wants to get his hands on my RS, or maybe, he wants to break into the racing business again. Who knows...

Anyway, I got paid yesterday, and today's been spent giving the bike the care and attention it deserves. I went to SMC motorcycles in Sheffield, and ended up buying a bottle of 2 stroke oil, a bottle of gear/transmission oil, and a bottle of brake fluid.
I also bumped into my mate, Den, and I convinced him to ride back to mine to help me replace the RS's fluids.

The journey back was fun, not too much traffic, some decent roads, and one really good bit where I overtook a car that decided to pull out closer to the middle of the road, forcing me to ride down the middle of the opposite lane. When a white van was coming towards me! I screamed past the car and I think I must have gone over a bump or something, because the bike launched about a foot (30cm) into the air while I was doing about 70mph, and landed with a bump and a bit of a wobble. I was so proud! I felt like rossi, it was great!! Sure I came damn close to being killed, but I didn't hit anything and I got one hell of an adrenaline rush.
Course I was nowhere near hitting the van and the journey continued, AND den got stuck behind the car, which wasn't my intention, but was funny.

We got home and changed all the bike's fluids, the gearbox oil was a fun one, when I ended up getting my hand covered in massiveley hot contaminated black gear oil. So that was a messy job, but not as messy as changing the brake fluid! wow!
Denis sat on the bike and pumped the lever while I kept the reservoir topped up and tweaked the other end of the brake line close to the wheel. At several points I forgot to close the bleed bolt, and air got into the system, and we had to start again, but we both made a mess of it really, with Denis vigorously pumping the lever trying to force the air out of the system (the bleed bolt was closed at this point so air wouldn't have been forced out as it had nowhere to go), and being taken by surprise as a shot of brake fluid shot all over him. I think his comment of "When I pump it, it spurts on me" was just what I needed, having already been amused by earlier antics, and we kinda accepted that neither of us were master mechanics. Still, we got the fluid changed. Den got fluid all over my bike, I got it all over my drive, but a fun time was had by all.
Shame then, that he rode off and left his stuff here! He's gonna need to pick that up.
I went out and tested the brakes on a nice little local run, I was out for about an hour, and it was fairly nice just to be riding round again.

Well, like I say, my bike's tanked up and ready to go, and tomorrow my AMD 4600 dual core processor and my 1gb of xms3500 RAM arrive, and on sunday, we put the computer together, and I'll be able to play my games on a really cool really powerful system.

Hopefully, the next time I write up, It should be on my new system. Either way, I'll keep everyone posted :).

I'm off out to drink my cup of tea, have a smoke, and figure out why the police helicopter is going loopy over my area.

Take care all.

Thursday, July 13, 2006

Psychotic dogs and diesel smoke!

Well, things have changed in the past few days, and I have to say, things seem to be looking up, loath as I am to admit it.

A few days ago, my parents came back from B&Q (a DIY/hardware store) with a small box containing no less than a dozen 8mm fuel line connections including 2 T pieces. Not only were they sitting right under my nose (we looked everywhere except B&Q!), but they cost under £2, compared to the £6.76 for the one from Aprilia which *Still* hasn't arrived!

So I've been back on the road for a few days and me and the bike are settling back into our old routine. In fact, we're closer than before, and thanks to the summer sun warming my tyres and the road, I'm confidently pushing her harder than ever before. And she just takes it and takes it. She's that good.

Still, after spending the day sitting round, watching tv, chatting on MSN etc, I decided to go out, down to Ship Hill in Rotherham to see if any of my old pals were about. So about 10pm, on go the leathers, and carrying my lid out the door, I get the bike niceley warmed up.
I get no the bike, eager to go on only my second night-ride since the bike broke down 8 weeks ago, flick the switch and the road in front of me illuminates under the glare of the headlight. Great, we're in business.
A quick ride down to get some petrol/gas and some ciggs, and up to Rotherham I go.
It was weird, riding round there for the first time in 8 weeks. I ride up past the police station, and hear the thumping music from the clubs nearby, see the revellers falling over or laughing and telling jokes, see lights swirling inside the clubs. The taxis fill the air with diesel smoke and as a couple of scooters ride past, two stroke smoke leaves it's distinctive smell, while the merest hint of weed smoke seems to underlie the whole thing.
Damn, I'd forgotten what the place smelled like.
I do a couple of laps of the hill, none of my mates are there. No one really to talk to, just a couple of pedbois and 40+ modified car owners, so I head off back home.

Riding back home, I stop at a junction while a guy goes past me on the main road. Course I pull onto the road behind him and head back towards home. I quickly realise that the guy in front is going so damn slow, sticking to the speed limits like superglue. The road widens out and I pull towards the center so I can sea past. There's another car coming towards me but it's fairly far away, I'm confident I can make it. Just before we approach some roadsigns in the center of the road, the road widens further and I see a chevronned do-not-drive-on-these-markings markings on the road. I indicate, and pull out behind the guy, start to overtake and I see the damn fool indicate right, too. What the hell is he playing at?!
I kick down another gear, scream past him, onto one side of the chevrons and almost into the center of the other lane while the oncoming car starts flashing his lights at me. I duck back in just in front of the car, and while my heart's still racing, the idiot just pulls off the road into his driveway. Damn fool.

I'm approaching the next small town on my way home, and I see something fluttering about in the middle of the road. No sooner do I wonder what it is than BANG, it hits me just under my left collarbone with an impact that made me wince. "What the hell was that? A Bat!?" I think. So I pull up in a nearby car park to check myself over for, I dunno. Blood? Fur? Feathers?
Nothing. Damn thing was probably something like a hawkmoth or something. Shame to have hit it really, they grow pretty damn big and live for about 2 years!

Still, I manage to get back home and ride down to the bottom to see if the kid with the motocross bike's out. His bike's there but he isn't. I turn round, and as I'm doing so I see a smallish dawwgeh (doggy=dog) wantering around forlornly. I finish turning round and there's no sign of the owner, so I pull up fairly close to him and stick the bike in neutral while he looks at me expectantly while wagging his tail. Now I work in animal welfare so I know if this guy's not reported found then things are gonna look pretty bleak for him. "Hey little guy" I mumble at him, and no sooner do I get the "He-" out of my mouth than he goes psychotic! Barking, waving his tail like crazy! He calms down a little but starts edging towards me. I fix him with my gaze (just what you're NOT supposed to do to nutty dogs, in hindsight) while I calmly and slowly reach to the clutch lever and put the bike back in gear, expecting him to have another go. He starts another barking session and edges closer. His barks get louder as my engine revs up, and before I realise what's happening, we're both accelerating up the road, him chasing my back wheel, barking all the way up to around 25mph before he starts dropping behind. I scream up the road at a fair rate of knots and pull into my drive, thinking to myself "some dogs just don't WANT to be helped!"

So I sit on my front doorstep, having a smoke, cooling off after taking my jacket off. Listening to the traffic in the distance, the splashing of the neighbour's garden fountain and the tinkle of some wind chimes somewhere.
"No matter" I think, "what happens, I've always got my bike. And If I haven't, at least I've had tonight".

Riding aside, I'm getting pretty excited about my computer. I just can't afford to get the 2GB of memory AND the CPU, but I'm not going to go another month without my new computer while this one continues to throw hissy fits and suffers the PC equivelant of multiple organ failure. I'm gonna get one gig, and the CPU, and maybe next month or the month after, I'll get another two gig, giving me a whopping 3 gig in my new system! Every little helps!

So Now I think I'm gonna get ready for a little sleep, maybe have another smoke, and try to wake up bright and early for work tomorrow. I've got to admit, I'm not entirely horrified by the prospect...



Take care.

Sunday, July 09, 2006

Back on the road!

Well after a few mediocre weeks, during which not much has happened, I've finally got the parts I need to get the bike back on the road.
They've been fitted and the bike runs beautifully. Course, I haven't taken it for a run yet because I'm still recovering from a bit of an all-dayer (like an all-nighter, but I woke up late), but tomorrow I think I'll be spending some quality time with the bike.

My hard disk has arrived, I opted to get a 250gb 7600rpm drive, on the basis that A. I can't afford a 74 gig 10k rpm raptor at the minute, and B. I need to move more than 74 gig of stuff onto my new machine when it's up and running.

My sparkly keyboard is a real pleasure to type on, and looks pretty cool. I'm only a CPU and some RAM short of having my new system up and running. Everything I need is here, just ready to be put together. On the downside, I seem to have started smoking again, but that's only a temporary thing, I don't predict it'll last long once I'm signed up at the local gym.

See ya round.

Friday, June 30, 2006

And on we go...

Well, not much to report, life goes on.

I got my keyboard delivered though, and my Graphics Card - I decided on a Geforce 7900GT, which while not the best on the market by any means, is still pretty mean and for £180, you know it still means business.

Other than that, nothing important seems to be happening.

Saturday, June 24, 2006

Nothing to report...

Life goes on...

...predictably, my motherboard arrived, no sign of the keyboard, which was kinda a good thing I guess, because in hindsight, it gave me the £30 I needed to survive to the end of the month (survival is relative - I could have survived, but I would have had to do it without food)

Still, life goes on, not much changes... My part from aprilia still hasn't arrived. It's pretty much a given that I'm not going to get it. The local garage have been ever so helpful, with the staff digging into their own pockets and going through their own garages to see if they can find a part for me, but short of ordering from a fuel line/connector specialist (which aprilia isn't), I'm not going to get my hands on one.

So the bike's still off the road, and my computer's now sat on top of my wardrobe.
Still, it's not all bad. I've got off my arse and finished putting up the rest of the posters round my room, so the place looks pretty cool now. Not a massive deal, you might think, but hey, since I spend most of my time sat on my butt in my room, I might as well make it look cool.

I figure I'm not going to be able to meet the cost of the computer in its entirity this month, so I'm going to split the cost over two months. Which not only means that the cost is easier to meet, it also means that I'm able to get marginally better components.

I still need to get the hard disk, I've been talked into getting a 10k RPM raptor, which is hella expensive with not much capacity, but I'm advised it'll be worth it.
I hope so - I just wanna get this damncomputer business over and done with. I've got other things that I want to do with my life and my money.

Still. I got my magazine from London today, it's got my article which I wrote printed in glorious colour, looks pretty good. There are a few edits on it which I wasn't advised of, a few bits missing which I'd rather have had kept in, especially considering the editor and I worked together on revising it, several times, but ultimatley, it's his magazine and it's cool to see it in print.

Still. I'll let you lot know when there's something in my life worth talking about. I wish I could sleep, until there was, but sadly, I don't have that luxury...

Tuesday, June 13, 2006

Another Pothole on the Road to Success!!!

Oh great, time goes on and things get worse.
Yeah folks, sorry for my less-than-great mood. I shouldn't really be so cranky, I've had an okay couple of days I guess.

I've been saving all my tips for ages and ages, from when I worked for Pizza Hut all those years ago. Damn, three years feels like nothing. That's a terrifying thing at 21. Course, the bigger coins got spent on all sorts of stuff, but the small change, 2's, 1's, 5's, occasional 10's just got put in loads of cash bags and languished in my wardrobe for the best part of three years.
Well I figured out I could get all my change together and take it to the local ASDA - they've got a machine there that counts small change, issues you with a voucher, which is then redeemable for cash. So I take along a year's worth of small change, a massive bag of coins weighing about 15 pounds (rough guess).

What do I get for just under 1700 coins?
21 quid. Great.

Still, I managed to have a decent time swimming, as per the usual monday. I can feel my fitness beginning to come back to me.

Today was a pretty standard mediocre day at work. All the phones were down, all the computers were down, and for the best part of six hours, they paid me to sit there and wait for them to get the systems back up.
Still, I managed to get home, have a little nap, and then went and took some cash out, ready to buy my motherboard and my new keyboard for my computer. We went to overclockers, which is the best place to buy the stuff, but ended up having a load of trouble with Natwest's new security forms which we HAD to fill in, with no explanation. This worried my dad enough to cancel the order cos he didn't want to give his details again. Well we both looked into it and he eventually made the order without telling me, and forgot the keyboard.
So we've had to tack on a message basically saying "can I have a keyboard too!" - they've confirmed the order for the motherboard, but not the keyboard. So now I'm probably gonna get the motherboard and no keyboard tomorrow - great, when a lack of communication means that the item I actually NEED rather than one I'm just getting to reduce costs next month, probably isn't gonna be sent.Still, At least we got part of the order confirmed.

I'm still waiting for the fuel T-piece to get in from Italy, so the bike's still off the road too.

Still, i've got a day off on thursday as I say, and in an attempt to lose weight (yeah I'm only 11 stone but my body fat has gone from around 9% to 19% in 5 months - worrying!), instead of drinking beer tomorrow I think I'll be after some cheap whisky or something. Not that I'm an alcoholic of course, but I have been pretty stressed.

Still. Life goes on. Not to say that it gets any better, but ya have ups and downs, ya know.
Take care people.

Thursday, June 08, 2006

Time marches on...

Well, it's been a vaguely interesting few days. A relatively unremarkable 3 day break from work seemed to turn into something possibly worth mentioning.

Tuesday night was pretty cool, turning up at my local bike pub, ready to see the do that Ross (the landlord/owner)'s put on for us. It turned out to be pretty damn good, a bouncy castle for the kids, a BBQ for the lads, even a beer caravan in the back car park saving us the trip to the bar.
They had live wrestling which was pretty cool to watch, scripted or not, and the best part, 3 seperate live bands on a stage in the beer garden.
the place was pretty full, and the inside of the pub was packed, there was even a tatooist inside the pub performing his work, gotta say, after a few pints, the temptation to get an "Aprilia" tattoo was more than a little strong - glad I didn't though :).

The party was fantastic, the third live band was definitley the best, playing a load of original material, sounding distinctly like Iron Maiden, I was pretty impressed with the quality of the music being shown off, and surprised that these dudes didn't have a contract already. Course at the minute, the recording industry is filled to capacity with identical emo american youngsters screaming about skateboards and stuff. Bullet for My Valentine springs to mind...

But hey all that aside.
My computer parts arrived today, I woke up early this morning after another night on the beers, waiting, looking out of the window, for a delivery van - just like a kid waiting to see santa on Christmas Eve or something. My waiting was rewarded, and just before lunchtime, a guy pulled up to deliver my Power supply, my Case, my CPU Cooler and my Lightscribe DVD/CDR/RW writer.

Course, I instantly unpacked everything, drooled over the PSU for a bit, then finally decided to bolt everything into the case straight away - not only does it save time later, I also wanted to play with my new toys - even though my computer isn't yet taking shape, at least now I have the case, I know what shape it will be.

I've got to get the computer running as soon as possible, I did a load of overtime earlier this month, so the money there will be useful, but with the advent of PhysX technology, seems that's even more money to spend, in addition to the fact that I need to rebuild my desk in order to be able to even fit my PC on it - the case's a little bigger than my trusty old 1.8 system, so i need to upgrade. Good old Ikea.

I need to get my hands on that system soon though, It's not my fault that I can't wait, just because I'm a god at need for speed Most Wanted, I need a system that can actually handle the damn game without slowing down or crashing every 30 minutes, a system that doesn't give me time to grab a beer while the loading screen idly flickers by...

Anyways, I finally got my throttle cable for my RS back today. It was promised that it'd be ready for wednesday so I figured I'd get it this afternoon. Got in, and the idiots there didn't even remember me dropping it off. Such a massive lack of communication that no one realised it was supposed to be done yesterday - yes I know it's a bit of a cliche, but it's true. They gave it back to me after I waited there, arms crossed, scowling, for it to be done. I got as far as my mum's car, before comparing the new and the old, and noticing that the new one had been screwed up again!

I went back in, and the dude assured me that it'd fit and it'd work, so fair enough. I got home, and did it fit? The politest answer, and not the one at the tip of my tongue is "no it didn't".
Me and my dad ended up soldering the damn thing ourselves, jury rigging it, so that it'd fit and it'd work, and guess what, it does! My dad's a superstar!

So I'm siphoning petrol from my NSR back into my RS so I can go out for a razz, and I figure I'd spill a lot less petrol if I used some fuel line from my RS. So I grab some of the fuel line and try to pull it off the T-piece going to the carbs. No joy, so I give it a solid yank. *SNAP*.
I stand there for two seconds while I replay one side of the plastic T piece snapping off in my hand through my mind a few more times, and once I've got my mind back up to speed, I let loose with a steady stream of expletives. Those things are not common, and Aprilia seldom take less than about four months to get spare parts to their customers (an exaggeration, but you get the idea), so I happily and constructiveley spend the rest of my afternoon strutting around the drive, throwing a wobbly, shouting and swearing.

So now the throttle cable is fixed, but if I turn the fuel tap on, it'll pour petrol all over the damn floor. Sometimes owning that RS is the best thing in the world, sometimes it's the hardest bike to live with. Until I get another T piece, the bike isn't going anywhere.

Still, my holiday is at an end, I'm back at work tomorrow, and contrary to my expectations, I don't miss it one bit, and I'm not happy to be going back...

Still, best get going.I need to sort something to eat, and I need to get back on Most Wanted...

Sunday, June 04, 2006

What does summer have in store...

Wow. What a washout.

May was the wettest month we've had in the uk for what feels like years. Every day was either met with drizles or rain, though on the nicer days we mereley had deluges instead. The bike's been sat on the drive, chained to the post, there to stay until the weather improves. RS250's might lean forever, but not in the wet.

I'm not really a wet weather rider, I never used to mind it though. I remember back to the time I rode to doncaster on my NSR, on a pair of knackered Pirelli tyres, and it started throwing it down on the way back - that definitley made me nervous, but I was okay with it. Then the following summer, I threw the bike down the road when the back tyre lost grip (okay, so it was an intensely hot day and the roads were bone dry, and I was winding it on a bit), and the following winter, I did it again when the front tyre slid out on some ice... I dunno, since then I've not been inclined to place much faith in the grip that my tyres provide. Shame really, cause the Metzeler Sportec M1's I've got on now will let the RS lean forever.

But I've been trying to get the bike on the road since the throttle cable snapped at the start of the month, on the first day at work since I started my new job. The bike sat there and through the rain it was neglected. "What..." I reasoned "is the point in fixing something that I'm not going to use until it stops pouring it down anyway?" Anyway. The weather improved, and I've been trying to get the bike back on the road.

I sent the old throttle cable to the mechanic with a hastily written note, explaining what needed to be fixed. Unfortunatley for me, he misread my spidery writing, reading "it is" as "1+15", and ever so kindly gave me 15 extra cm on the length of the cable.

Of course, I went crazy, I just lost it. I'd spent days looking forward to getting back on the bike, and when my parts arrived two days ago, and didn't fit, I just couldn't keep my temper. I threw a childish temper tantrum, threw the cable down the road, kicked the fuel tank across the drive, and punched a wall - which did my wrist a load of good.
Anyway, the parts are back at the mechanic, with a much clearer note explaining that I want a normal damn cable, nothing fancy, just a normal cable.

So I've spent time cleaning my bike, more time cleaning it, polishing it, removing rust, respraying bits, and for good measure I even changed the exhaust gaskets too - which is cool, cos now the damn thing sounds so much bette, idles so much better, it sounds like a different bike.

Still, the bike's off the road, and it'll be off the road until at least wednesday, when the parts are available to collect. Given that he screwed up, I'm hoping he saves an argument by not trying to charge me again. but until I get the parts back on the bike, my wings are clipped. I sit on the drive next to my bike, and every now and again a dude will scream round the corner, my corner, on his bike, while I just sit and watch. It isn't right, I should be on there too, I guess my lazyness caught up with me on this one.

Still, it's not the massive issue it might seem, I've got stuff planned for this week. I booked a few days off work, so I'm at work tomorrow, taking my nephew swimming to play with his new "treat" (I'm gonna buy him a beach ball) for a couple of hours, and then I'm on the beer tomorrow night. As for tuesday, I might be collecting some parts for my new computer, if I can order them tonight - I've got to decide what to get, since my insurance company randomly charged me an extra £40 on my premium without telling me why.

But hey, I've got to keep myself occupied, and hopefully this summer will be one hell of an exciting one. I've got the new bike, my mate's got a new bike, I've got new leathers, I feel like rossi every time I get on the bike... I'm getting a new computer, time to play doom 3 and half life 2 the way they're meant to be played, not to mention getting on with my 3d stuff on a machine that can handle the high demantds that 3d rendering places on it...

But i dunno. I still feel something's missing. I'm missing direction. I'm bored of my job, I'm just on one of my downers. One of those days where you sit and think "what the hell am I going to do with the rest of my life?"

I dunno, I'll take it one day at a time - seems to make it work out.
I can only see how it goes :).

Monday, May 29, 2006

Oops! (or "pop goes the blog")

"Where's it all gone?"
"Where..." asks a regular reader of this blog "...have all the posts gone??"

They're gone - they went the way of the delete button. I'd better introduce myself.
Hi all, names Andy. I know you can read it now in at least two places on your screen but I figured I'd try to be polite and helpful anyway.

This is my blog.

So what happened? Is "Andy" a hijacker?

Not really. I'm just a lad who had a blog created for him by some practical joker who thought it would be funny to call himself andy and tell the world what a sexual deviant he is, the god damn...

I'm not getting into all that, it's cool that he set the thing up for me in the first place - i'm far too
lazy to get up to that sorta thing myself so at least he's given me some way of spending some of my free time - which, now that all my free cash is spoken for, is pretty much the only thing I have that's free. Apart from food or TV or Internet access...

...Yes, shock horror, I still (still?!) live with my parents, at the mature age of 21. Hey, it's not all bad, I did actually move into my own place at the start of this year, but had to return home in defeat when the property owner found out that his tenant had let us move in without telling him, and promptly kicked us all out, ending a 10 week young man's dream binge of loud music, big dogs, strong beer, computer games, endless weed, more mates over than you could count, pizza and the occasional police appearance.
It's nothing if not quiet back at my parents house.

But hey, all that disposable income has to go on something - I'm currently in the process of buying a new computer - I was gonna budget £400 for a decent-ish system, and made the mistake of going to overclockers at my brother's advice, where my lack of self control inflated my budget to just over £1k, regardless of whether I have the cash now or not - whatever my brother has is the best, and he takes pride in it. And whatever he has, I have to have better - i'm that sorta guy.

I've already got myself a pretty cool joystick/throttle - I just saw it and had to have it - it'll go fantastically well with the new machine, plus, I always needed a throttle and a rudder, having spent years playing with neither.

Once that's done, I've got to spend some money on the love of my life - she's sexy, she's italian, she's exotic, and she's sure as hell expensive to spend time with - my 1996 Aprilia RS250.
Like any long term partner, she gets my time, she gets my money, and she sure as hell gets my attention. But as soon as you've got her warmed up and on the right roads, damn, I've shaken my head in pity at four stroke riders, only ducati riders come close to knowing how good the RS is to ride...

Anyway, back on the subject.
The blog is looking a bit plain at the minute - I've got to confess, my strength lies in 3D modelling, not HTML, so embarrasingly for me, although I'm building a computer down to the last nut and bolt, I have to work with what I'm given blog-wise, until I figure out how to modify it. And for readers of the first draft of this - I know the hyperlinks didn't work - they do now.

Anyway, I hope you found all of the above a tad easier to read than the inane crap that was shoved online without my knowledge by that guy, I would slate him more but I'm feeling residual gratefulness towards him for setting a blog up for me - even if he did do it soleley to make me look an idiot...

Take care, have fun!
Andy