I blog when I go abroad, and occasionally when I do stuff in the UK too. There's a nicer interface over here.

Thursday, November 15, 2007

shall I start this up again?

Not sure I can truly be bothered, but I've been thinking of mouthing off again recently, and bunkum.org failed dismally to take off. I can't believe I was ever stupid enough to think I'd be more active at looking after a bunch of code than a bunch of English. Meh.

I'm off to Istanbul in 15 hours.

Tuesday, May 15, 2007

no more

I simply can't be arsed blogging any more. Bet no-one had figured that out. Anyway, aren't social networks the future? I've got something far more web 2.2 up and running, my load of online nonsense. Behold, http://bunkum.org/ ! If I'm lucky then people will like it and use it and chat, amongst themselves if not with me, and if I'm unlucky it'll become popular and the countless usability and scalability problems with it will show me up to be the coding charlatan I undoubtedly am. Either way I'm sure it won't last very long.

By the way, if anyone does bother to head bunkumwards, the rules are quite simple:

  • register with minimal fuss

  • subscribe to the topics you think you'll find interesting

  • you can reply to messages but not start new threads by default

  • if you email me, from the address you used to register with, then I'll give you thread-starting access

Not putting my email address here or on there, it's only meant for people that already know me anyway. Frankly it's nothing more than a thinly veiled attempt to get my own messageboard software/interface more widely known and used, because I'm a tiny bit proud of it. That and I was bored at work today.

Off you go then. Cheesehound is dead, long live http://bunkum.org/

Thursday, February 08, 2007


my flat
Originally uploaded by Darren Foreman.

Tuesday, February 06, 2007

Slack slack slack

Yes, I know I've not written much recently. Sorry. But frankly I've not been doing a lot of interest other than listening to shitloads of bands that oink and squeal, and that all goes here. Actually I tried to go see some bands last Tuesday at the Peel and failed, because the gig just plain wasn't on. Hmph. I've also vaguely been keeping up with the cricket but not watching it, although I did manage to listen to the last few overs of England's glorious victory this morning taking us, massively improbably, into the final against Australia. Cor. Add that to the weekend's rugby and we could be on a national sporting hat-trick, just need to beat Spain at the footy tomorrow...

I still don't have an mp3 player. I'm quite close to buying either a Trekstor Vibez or a Cowon iAudio D2, but not that close really. Mind you I am starting to get proper fed up with XFM. The other day the breakfast DJ was so fucking awful (the Friday guy, not Laverne) and he played 2 songs twice. Do they want people to listen to entire shows or what? Sigh. That said I get the feeling I'm in a minority when it comes to wanting a bit more diversity and variation on the radio anyway; the 8 o'clock shuffle seems to almost always include a track that gets played regularly anyway, and the "top 7 most requested songs of the day" thing at 7pm each day is also shockingly predictable. Why don't people request stuff that they can't hear just by tuning in for any given hour of any day?

I saw Casino Royale the other week. I thought it was shit. Well, the second half at least. Did a script writer die halfway through and they let a 6th form work experience lad write the rest? From the moment that bird was introduced to the plot it was just dreadful dreadful dreadful. And not just the script, but her acting too. Pah. Thankfully in filmic terms I managed to even things out by buying and watching Warrior King which, like its predecessor Ong Bak, is absofuckinglutely superb.

Sutton Ecology Centre is shit.

Friday, January 26, 2007


Despite barely posting once a week here it appears I've decided there's enough time spare for me to start a new blog. Behold, Oinkers and Squealers.

Wednesday, January 24, 2007


snow in my garden
Originally uploaded by Darren Foreman.
It's cold. There's snow. My garden's covered in it. London's covered in it, in fact. XFM were inviting people to phone up, if they hadn't yet looked outside, and react to opening their curtains/blinds/etc live on air today, as if the whole of London loves snow. I don't love snow. I'm trying to like it because let's face it, not liking snow's a bit miserable. But right now I've got a good excuse to be miserable anyway, because I'm ill.

Proper ill, that is. IIRC I've not had a day off work in the last 2 or 3 years that wasn't either a booked holiday, or due to a hangover. This time it's neither: I've got a total bastard chesty cough, a twat of a bunged up nose, a slag of a sore throat, and bitch of a heavy head. Thankfully I also have some 7.7% alcohol cough mixture, a superb sofa, a load of glucose-containing food and drink, and a bottle of Olbas Oil. Fucking hell though, get this: yesterday I couldn't smell the Olbas at all, so bad was my nose. Seems a little clearer today but the lungs and throat are still fucked.

Friday, January 19, 2007

London: A Life In Maps

In a fit of culture I went to the British Library last weekend, to have a butcher's at their London Maps exhibition. Quite good it was. I was expecting more schematics than there were, I can only recall there being any in the last bit where a few tube and train maps cropped up; mostly the maps were just maps of central London, concentrating on the north side of the river (from St James's to the Tower, really) to begin with and gradually increasing in scope as London itself did so. Took a good while to come across a map that went out far enough that it had Surbiton labelled on it, and even then it was spelt Serbiton. C'uh.

The little bits of text describing each map were great. I loved reading about two cartographers in the 1600s, whose names escape me but who were vying for supremacy in the burgeoning "map London" industry, if that's what you can call it. The idea that people back in the day really did have arch enemies, as they were referred to, appeals greatly to me. I wonder if I can cultivate such a relationship with a coder at, say, Google.

Understandably enough a lot of the maps were pretty samey. Understandable because there's an objective truth being laid out, obviously. Because of that it seemed the rival map makers had to find their own way of making their mark and trying to convince people (financers or royalty, I assume) that theirs was best. In at least 3 instances the tactic seemed to be "make the map as ridiculous in scale as possible; make it out of 16 sheets, 8 high by 2 wide, such that a ladder is required to see the top; or make it so long it takes 5 minutes to walk from one end to the other". Yes, some of the maps were huge, and not just because they wanted to include masses of detail either. In fact some of the most detailed maps were a pretty normal size and required lots of squinting to make sense out of.

Having to walk from one end to another of a map brought London's size into context though. I recently walked from Waterloo station to Tower Bridge and back of an evening -- in the late 1600s, that was the entire breadth of the city. When I walked the 13 miles home back in November, that would have been an epic journey worthy of chronicling, through countryside and lots of disparate villages. Bit different now.

Other ways of making the maps stand out seemed to be in the insignia. In a spare bit of space on most maps was the title, the author's name, the long subtitle that was all the rage, and all that gubbins. They were surrounded with the most immaculately presented and fabulously detailed little coat-of-arms type things and were, in general, far more ornate and impressive than the maps themselves. Odd.

It was quite interesting to learn that the train system, certainly in south west London (the Kingston Loop et al) is the same now as it was in the late 1800s; it was very funny to see a PUBLIC TRANSPORT IS TERRIBLE AND WILL KILL YOUR HORSES pamphlet; but the best thing of the whole exhibition was seeing a panorama that didn't use the word panorama -- oh no -- it was a cosmorama. That's my new favourite word, that is.

I really hate the HSBC cash machines at Cambridge Circus. Every time I use them I forget just how tormenting they are. Here's a tip: always ask for an amount of pounds divisible by 20. Don't be fooled by them offering you £30 or £50 -- they never have tenners and always ask you to pick £40 or £60. Poxy fucking things.

Sunday, January 14, 2007

Dodgy barnet

"Controversial Hair back in action" is my favourite cricketing headline of recent times.

Sunday, January 07, 2007

Is that what we call a crowd?

7 points from 9 isn't a bad return for the last game of 2006/first two games of 2007. Yes, I'm back watching football again. A few badgering emails from the Dons Trust convinced me to head to the first, as they wanted to take a photo of me and a bunch of other recent Dons Draw winners. Duties done, piss poor weather and a dreadful first 10 minutes made me think staying away might have been a better option after all. But we ended up winning 3-1 and a mate offered me a free ticket to a game in late January -- in the Presidents' (or President's?) Lounge, no less. Then on Wednesday I went to Bromley away and saw another 3-1 victory in possibly the most unpleasant weather I've attended a game in since Barnsley away in February 1998 or so. 1-1 away at Ramsgate yesterday completed my hat trick. Fuck me what an appalling ground. Not sure I'll make 38 games on the trot (my previous record) but 4's looking a reasonable target.

Monday, January 01, 2007

Farewell 2006

Good fucking riddance.