Thoughts at the Start of the Week

ITEM: When I got the new computer back in November (and it doesn’t seem that long ago) it came with a free 90 day trial of BullGuard security, and that ninety days is now nearly up, as it reminds me just about every other half hour.

So, what anti-virus/security do any of you guys use and/or recommend? Do I have to say that FREE is a definite selling point?

ITEM: Every so often you read something that gives you a WTF moment, as for instance this from Voices of the Dead, the new Peter Leonard novel:-

‘Harry had a thing going with a neighbor named Galina, a big-breasted thirty-seven-year-old Latvian Jew whose breath smelled like sauerkraut, and privates like wild geese.’

I mean, seriously… WTF???

ITEM: As I mentioned previously, spammers need to do market research and target their missives more effectively. Nobody who knows me would expect to grab my attention with an email ‘From the Handy Men of America’ (and I resisted the temptation to open it up to discover if it was about ‘working wood’).

Miss P once opined that my shortcomings in the area of DIY debarred me from being considered ‘husband material’ by any right thinking woman, and all my protestations that I was a luuurve machine did nothing to persuade her that this hasty judgement was totally out of order.

ITEM: The other day I stumbled across a report that insisted 2011 was one of the warmest years on record, though all the anecdotal evidence and my personal experience ‘proves’ otherwise. In fact the temperature for nine of the twelve months was higher than average, the exceptions being June, July and August.

Older readers may recall that there was a time when those three months, or thereabouts, were traditionally known as summer.

ITEM: As I recall, in his autobiography The Motion of Light in Water, Samuel R. Delany credits J. S. Bach’s Brandenburg Concertoes with saving his life. He’d decided on suicide, but played the first concerto, and then just had to play the second, and so on until by the time he’d listened to all six the impulse had gone.

I had a somewhat different experience yesterday, when listening to the Brandenburg Concertoes. A visitor asked me what was playing and when I answered Bach the response came ‘Where’s the dog?’

This reminded me that in Silence of the Lambs Hannibal plays Bach’s Goldberg Variations just before he kills someone and tears their face off.

Swings and roundabouts.

ITEM: If I’d ever had doubts, Facebook justified its existence to me at the weekend, when I gazed on in a state of almost orgasmic glee as somebody who’d been a moderate pain in the arse back in my Whispers of Wickedness days got called out as a hypocrite and torn off a strip.

Of course, I more or less agreed with the position of the person getting called out, so guess he wasn’t the only hypocrite, but…


Eggs and omelettes, and I’ll reboot my principles tomorrow.

ITEM: Staying with Facebook, when it comes to discussing politics and/or religion it seems to me that some people on there have serious anger management/impulse control issues.

Yeah, I know the old saw about how in the ‘real world’ facial expressions and body language provide a context, and I guess that has some bearing when it comes to remarks being taken the wrong way. On the other hand you’re not being put on the spot, there’s a chance to step back and type a considered response rather than blurting out the first thing that comes into your head, but few people seem to take that opportunity. They’ve bought into the down side of instant communication.

When it comes to ‘real world’ versus ‘virtual world’ disagreements, I think the clincher for me is that to the best of my knowledge nobody has ever got glassed in a pub car park for clicking the Like button when they shouldn’t have done.

Your experience may differ.

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4 Responses to Thoughts at the Start of the Week

  1. Cate Gardner says:

    I used Norton on my old computer but it let lots of viruses through. When I got my laptop I downloaded the free ‘Microsoft Security Essentials’ and (touch wood) it’s been fine.

    I miss a good old fashioned summer. I keep forgetting I should be booking my hols in April now. 😦

    • petertennant says:

      Cheers Cate. I used to run Norton on the old computer. Damned thing ate up so much RAM, never stopped any serious threat, and was always so costly to renew that buying a new version was cheaper. The MSE looks good, but I’ll wait and see what anyone else has to say before committing.

      Yep, April is the month to go for if you want any decent weather. But it just feels sooooooo wrong to be sitting on a beach soaking up the rays in April.

  2. I used AVG Free for years without any problems, but like Cate I’m using Microsoft Security Essentials now.

    I think I missed the rows on Facebook over religion and politics, but it’s definitely been a vintage year for internet drama so far…

  3. petertennant says:

    AVG Free was the one I always used to hear good things about, from The Imaginary Girlfriend among others, but Cate and you are persuading me to lean in the direction of MSE.

    Internet drama R’Us.

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