Wednesday, 31 December 2014

Farewell 2014.....

So there goes 2014. It hasn't been the easiest of years but it has been a good one! Lots of things didn't go as planned for one reason or another but no matter what Toni and I always had each other.

Some awesome things that did happen off of the top of my head:
  • Got costume clearance as a Sith Lord from the following: Iconic Legion, The Dark Alliance, The Dark Empire
  • Pirate Weekend in Weymouth
  • Crabchurch Weekend in Weymouth
  • Dolmen Grove Beltane camp
  • Dolmen Grove Tribal Dreams camp
  • Dolmen Grove Summer Solstice Ritual at Stonehenge
  • Started the Wicca Moon School Of Witchery course
  • Had a holiday at Center Parcs
  • Met Dave Prowse and had autograph and photo session
We don't get out quite as much now that Pam is living with us but that doesn't mean that life has slowed down. It's all go here and quite often we are both completely knackered. I wouldn't change anything though, it's all part of our story and in 2015 we will be having new adventures and we have some plans already.......

We met their mother, Harry Potter and New York Rangers back to winning

So today Toni and I concluded How I Met Your Mother (and we did in the end). It is a brilliant TV comedy show that is well worth checking out if you haven't seen it. There aren't many shows that have us hooked so much that we can't stop watching (Breaking Bad and The Clone Wars being notable exceptions). We burned through nine season (208 episodes) in no time at all.

Change of pace in the afternoon as we opted for some Harry Potter and then a couple of episodes of National Geographic's Taboo series.Oh, and there was Indian food too....

From 23:00 we spent our time watching New York Rangers v Florida Panthers. First period was end to end and the Panthers netminder made some incredible saves. At 16:42 Chris Kreider took the Rangers 1 - 0 up with a great slapshot. First period ended with the Rangers leading 1 - 0. Shots on goal were NYR 12 and FLA 7.

Just before the second period started we indulged in a bit of this as we hit midnight!

Second period (and 2015 here in the UK) started with a bang as Derrick Brassard made it 2 - 0 to the Rangers at 01:29. There was lots of Rangers pressure and a bit of end to end before Ryan McDonagh scored a power play goal at 14:28 to extend the Rangers lead to 3 - 0. At 16:38 the Panthers started to close the gap as they made it 3 - 1. Second period ended with Rangers leading 3 - 1. Shots on goal were NYR 12 (24) and FLA 5 (12).

Third period started with Rangers on a penalty kill after a stupid Rick Nash slash. Fortunately this was cancelled out by the Panthers taking an equally stupid penalty. The Panthers got another power play chance and made it 3 - 2 at 07:39. A scramble in front of the Panthers net allowed Martin St. Louis to make it 4 - 2 at 09:51. Dominic Moore picked up a Martin St. Louis rebound to put the Rangers 5 - 2 up at 15:35. Rangers were back to winning ways with a nice 5 - 2 result. Shots on goal were NYR 10 (34) and FLA 8 (20).

Last.FM 2014 Overall TOP 20 Charts

Here are my top listening habits on Last.FM for 2014.

01 - The Dolmen
02 - John Williams
03 - Tarja
04 - Damh the Bard
05 - Psychic TV
06 - Chumbawamba
07 - Lindie Lila
08 - Madonna
09 - NOFX
10 - Inkubus Sukkubus
11 - Warrant
12 - Dead Kennedys
13 - Sacred Spirit
14 - Order 66
15 - Marilyn Manson
16 - Abney Park
17 - Mediæval Bæbes
18 - The Smiths
19 - Spriggan Mist
20 - Taloch

TOP 20 ALBUMS OF 2014:
01 - Warrant – Cherry Pie
02 - John Williams – Star Wars: Episode I - The Phantom Menace
03 - Order 66 – Altering The Deal
04 - Warrant – Dirty Rotten Filthy Stinking Rich
05 - Buzzcocks – The Way
06 - Conflict – Ungovernable Force
06 - Order 66 – All Too Easy
08 - Status Quo – Aquostic (Stripped Bare)
09 - Misfits – Box Set
09 - John Williams – Star Wars: Episode IV - A New Hope
11 - John Williams – Star Wars: Episode V - The Empire Strikes Back
12 - John Williams – Star Wars: Episode II - Attack of the Clones
13 - Allen Voivod – Star Wars 7x7 Podcast
14 - The 69 Cats – Transylvanian Tapes
15 - John Williams – Star Wars: Episode VI - Return of the Jedi
16 - John Williams – Star Wars: Episode III - Revenge of the Sith
17 - DragonForce – Maximum Overload
18 - Bernie Torme – Flowers & Dirt
19 - Bowcaster – Bowcaster
19 - Accept – Blind Rage

Tuesday, 30 December 2014

Shadow Of Mordor and How I Met Your Mother

I started the day playing Shadow Of Mordor. It's early days yet but it wasn't the instant hit with me that I had hope it might be. I probably shouldn't have tried to play it when I was only half awake :) I'll give it a shot another time to see if I get on with it better.

I did a bit of reading and then we spent the rest of the day watching LOTS of How I Met Your Mother. We haven't been watching it that long overall but we are now on to the ninth season and are twelve episodes away from the end.We'll have to start scouting out a new show to watch when we are done.

Monday, 29 December 2014

PS4 day, Ziyafet and Rangers streak ends

It was a bit of a PS4 day for me today. I managed to have short sessions on Child Of Light, Flockers and The Last Of Us and racked up quite a few games in GM mode in NHL 15. I really liked Child Of Light as it not a fast and frantic game, the player can leisurely look and around and do stuff without having to have split second reactions all the time which was a welcome change. It's also really cute! Flockers is like Lemmings only using sheep instead. It's a bit weird hearing "baa" noises coming out of the speaker on the controller!
Tomorrow I shall mostly be playing NHL 15 and then taking Shadow Of Mordor for a spin!

Toni and I took Pam and Zoe to Ziyafet for dinner as the desire to cook anything was absolutely zero! It was nice to get out of the house for a short while and good food made it even better.

We stayed up late watching How I Met Your Mother so that we would still be awake for New York Rangers v Dallas Stars at 01:30.

First period starting with a strong push from the Stars and although the Rangers did push forward it felt like the Stars had the better possession. This all changed when the Rangers we on the power play and J.T. Miller made it 1 - 0 to the Rangers at 05:57. Dallas Stars were on the power play not long afterwards and tied the game 1 - 1 at 09:02. It was end to end for a while after that and then the Stars went 1 - 2 ahead at 15:46. Rangers didn't let up though and tied it 2 - 2 at 16:46 with a deflected shot from Kevin Hayes. First period ended 2 - 2. Shots on goal were NYR 6 and DAL 8.

Second period started with some Rangers pressure but the Stars took a 2 - 3 lead after 54 seconds. Rangers had some great chances but just couldn't get one past the Stars. The Stars are a fast team and I am really glad the Rangers don't have to play them too often in a season. Second period ended with Rangers trailing 2 - 3. Shots on goal were NYR 11 (20) and DAL 8 (17).

Third period start with the remainder of a Rangers power play but sadly nothing came of it. It was end to end with both teams desperate to score again. Rangers had their chances but Stars were more dominant for the first half. Rangers then started to up the ante to try and grab the equaliser. Two minutes of empty net bum squeezing time. Somehow the Rangers managed to keep the score at 2 - 3 and not concede another. Sadly the winning streeak ended at eight games and the Rangers lost 2 - 3.  

Sunday, 28 December 2014

How I Met Your Mother

Today was a do nothing day. Toni and I spent the day cuddling on the sofa watching How I Met Your Mother. I did managed to get in a bit of reading and a couple of games of NHL 15. Sometimes it doesn't take much to make a fantastic day!

Saturday, 27 December 2014

Late starts, dripping, PSN and PS4 plus Rangers beat the Devils

I could really get used to these late starts, just got another week of them to go before I have to adjust back to the old regime. I shall make the most of them while I can. I had turkey dripping for breakfast for the second day in a row. One of the major good things about this time of year :)

Toni went over to see Jamie for a few hours and I stayed behind to look after Pam. Playstation Network was back up so I could set up the PS4 properly and indulge in a couple of games. Wolfenstein New World Order and NHL 15 were my weapons of choice. It was great to be able to start a GM mode season as the New York Rangers playing with the current roster. My play was about as consistent as the Rangers at the start of the season too LOL.

We had a bit of a marathon run watching How I Met Your Mother and enjoyed some Chinese food (to give us a break from the usual cold meat platter) and just chilled out.

The day finished off with New York Rangers v New Jersey Devils as our hockey choice for the night. It was a cagey game to start with and both teams had chances but couldn't put the puck away. At 18:14 Derek Stepan scored short handed putting the Rangers 1 - 0 up. The first period ended with Rangers leading 1 - 0. Shots on goal were NYR 10 and NJD 8.

Second period was again end to end with the Devils looking a little more dangerous. The Rangers power play clicked though and at 07:38 Derek Stepan scored his second to take the Rangers 2 - 0 up. Devils pulled one back to make it 2 - 1 at 10:23. The Rangers really started to pile on some pressure towards the end of the second with some good chances. They managed to dodge another goal against with the metalwork making the save! Second period ended with Rangers leading 2 - 1. Shots on goal were NYR 13 (23) and NJD 5 (13).

More pressure from the Devils in the third as they desperately tried to tie things up. Towards the end of the period the Rangers had a great surge. A Rick Nash empty netter was ruled offside which was then compensated for as Derek Stepan got his hat trick and made it 3 - 1 at 19:05. Rangers won the game 3 - 1 making it eight consecutive wins! Shots on goal were NYR 5 (28) and NJD 7 (20).

Friday, 26 December 2014

Boxing Day

It was a real chill out day today. I had hoped to spend some time playing on the PS4 but that plan went out the window thanks to some gits deciding it would be fun to run DDOS attacks on both Xbox Live and Playstation Network thus ruining the Xmas period of millions of people. It didn't ruin anything for me but it was a pain not being able to set up and use my PS4 properly.

Instead there was some reading, some watching of TV and more lovely food. Can't say fairer than that!

Thursday, 25 December 2014

Xmas Day fun

It was a nice leisurely Xmas Day with us doing things differently for a change. Presents were to wait until after dinner and so this little lot were on standby until later in the day!

We got up and just pottered about. for a bit. Bob popped over briefly and we gave him his presents

Leanne and Irvin put a brief appearance to drop off a present for Pam before taking Bob off to Jamie's. Toni and Zoe did all the dinner prep with me doing washing up stints in between. I also managed to get in a session of Assassin's Creed Black Flag. This was played on the new PS3 system that I had just bought myself to replace the one I had as it was getting pretty noisy. Dinner was amazing. We had turkey, beef, roast veg, roast potatoes, and two delicious types of gravy.

It was at quarter to six that we finally got round to doing the presents bit. It was certainly worth the wait.

Darth Vader suitcase and a set of Star Wars Making Of books for me kicked things off..... YES YES YES!

Lots of happy people today (this is a subset of the presents we all got)........

The evening was spent having a drink and chilling out.I set up my PS4 (got frustrated that PSN was down due to a hack attack) and played some Little Big Planet 3. Then it was time for a fantastic episode of Downton Abbey. Yes I did shed a tear at the end I have to confess.

We had a really good day. Stress free, good company, good food, some great presents. Just the way it should be!

Yuletide Wishes & Season's Greetings everybody

Yuletide Wishes and Season's Greetings to all my family and friends. I hope you all enjoy your holidays and time off no matter how you celebrate! Le anpetu ki wo waste yuha (There is goodness in this day)…

...and last but not least.....

Wednesday, 24 December 2014

High tech Xmas eve

After the half day at work Sam and I rushed home to get all techie back in the house. Yesterday I took delivery of some new networking gear to replace our current set up. It was a completely painless task setting everything up.

First up we have the DrayTek Vigor 2860n router which is replacing our BT Home Hub 5 (and 2 and 3 that we were using as wireless extenders). It's a bit of a beast but damn is it good! It's not in it's final home yet while we make sure everything is working OK hence the messy wires.

Next up was the combination of two cheap switches into one much better quality one to carry our load in the living room. For this we have a Netgear GS108 eight port gigabit switch.

All of these lovely devices were connected with brand new Cat 5e cables to ensure maximum bandwidth utilisation. So far so good. We have better connectivity both wired and wireless with none of the hassle and problems that we always seemed to experience using BT Home Hubs. It wasn't a cheap upgrade but I have a feeling that it was worth it! The router is so configurable that it's going to take  me ages to work out how to use it properly. New learning experiences are always good!

Last.FM listening post

Here's last week's top picks music lovers!

Top weekly tracks:

Top weekly artists:

Overall top tracks:

Overall top artists:

Tuesday, 23 December 2014

Bacon, winding down, fan photo and Rangers beat the Capitals

Sam and I ended up getting an earlier train today due to the bus being prompt and so we ended up at London Bridge at a loose end. What does one do when one is at a loose end first thing in the morning? Why, go and have bacon roll and a cup of tea at Dakin & Co.of course. £2.50 for a crusty roll full of bacon and a nice strong cuppa, BLISS! You can smell the bacon as you approach....
As you can expect at this time of year work is slowly winding down so it is nice to experience some reasonably stress free days. Only a half day to go and then I'll be disabling work email on my phone and it will be time to kick back and relax.  

There was some dinner and some Harry Potter plus gluten free bad things as the evening progressed.

They say it's the little things in life that make all the difference and I was delighted to find that the photo of me with Dave Prowse (taken at Romford Star Wars Charity Convention in July) has now been posted on Dave Prowse's official Facebook page. I felt like a great big kid seeing this on there!

The day finished off with New York Rangers v Washington Capitals. 3:32 in and Mats Zuccarello put the Rangers up 1 - 0 and Madison Square Garden exploded! Lots of pressure from the Rangers and a dink off the post. First period ended with Rangers leading 1 - 0. Shots on goal were NYR 9, WSH 5.

Second period start a little feisty and the Rangers went on the power play and Martin St. Louis made it 2 - 0 to the Rangers at 01:03. The Capitals started to look a little more dangerous this period but the Rangers managed to keep them at bay. Second period ended with the Rangers 2 - 0 up. Shots on goal were NYR 9 (18), WSH 6 (11).

Third period started with the Capitals really pushing hard to close the gap. Rick Nash however had different ideas and increased the Rangers lead to 3 - 0 at 5:12. Sadly the Capitals grabbed one back at 5:53 to make it 3 - 1. Half way through the period and the Capitals started to turn things up again. One power play goal later and the Capitals had closed things up to 3 - 2. A 5 on 3 advantage allowed the Rangers to extend things to 4 - 2 with another Martin St. Louis power play goal at 16:12. Rangers won the game 4 - 2. Shots on goal were NYR 9 (27), WSH 21 (32). Rangers have now won seven straight games!

Monday, 22 December 2014

I'm back again....

Apologies for the lack of blog posts over the last few days.I think I've been on a bit of an emotional roller coaster what with all the stresses of my battles with Facebook and getting to grips with my identity once again and who I really am. Not sure I am fully there yet but I certainly feel like I am getting back on track again. It was all quite an odd experience and one that I am not keen to repeat.

Anyhow, enough of the cobblers, I'm feeling more positive and I am back once again so let normal service resume....

There's just a day and a half of working left to do and then I have a week and a half to relax and recharge. I am REALLY looking forward to the break

Wednesday, 17 December 2014

Last.FM listening post

Here's last week's top picks music lovers!

Top weekly tracks:

Top weekly artists:

Overall top tracks:

Overall top artists:

Tuesday, 16 December 2014

Grrr at work, music, pizza and food to come

Aside from my awesome breakthrough with Facebook today was very frustrating on the work front. Sometimes it's hard to keep your stuff together when nobody around you seems to care. There were lots of GRRRR moments. It will be interesting to see how people react tomorrow with a lunch time deadline breathing down our necks!

I cheered myself up having a little reminisce over old musical exploits over the years. Have to admit the old fingers started getting twitchy as I watched some old Hollywood Doll live videos from our mini tour with Devilish Presley.

Sam has decided to join Toni and I on the gluten free lifestyle. This has had a major advantage for us, it means he now cooks some delicious gluten free dishes. Tonight he made us the most amazing gluten free pizza. I can't wait until the weekend when he is making his own gluten free pasta and we'll either be having lasagne or bolognaise, om nom nom!

#MyNameIs - KT Glitz (and Facebook finally agree)

Well we had a nice little breakthrough today. I received this message from the Facebook support mob:
Hi KT, Thanks for verifying your identity. We’ve made the name change you requested. If you‘d like to add another name to your account (ex: nickname, maiden name), follow the steps in the Help Center: Thanks, Nathan Community Operations Facebook
Lo and behold my account had changed to say KT Glitz. The names in brackets are nicknames that I control so they are fine)

What a real hassle that was. Just hope that IF it gets reported again they will have the common sense not to make me jump through all these pointless hoops a second time. Part of me was disappointed that I didn't get to use plan B but I have that in reserve just in case this stupidity starts up again. Fingers crossed I won't have to use it or worry about any of this again!

I was asked to give feedback on how they performed with my support request. Although they did sort me out in the end they most certainly didn't get a big thumbs up from me!

Monday, 15 December 2014

#MyNameIs - the Farcebook saga continues #WhatsMyNameAgain

Anyone remember my little #MyNameIs saga with Facebook? Well on Friday it all happened again with my account being nicely deactivated until I put my "real" name in. It was the same routine as last time, no chance to dispute it or upload documents, just change name. I did so this time I ended up as Katie Glitz (the name I originally created the account with before I changed it to KT Glitz).

While doing all my other research I had also come across a page where you can request a name change and supply supporting documentation including legal documents. It is such a shame you don't get that option when they start the deactivation nonsense. Anyway, name change was requested to be KT Glitz and a copy of legal Deed Poll document was then uploaded and Facebook very kindly opened a case for me. The next step was them emailing me to say that I need to reply to the email telling them what my name was to be and to attach photo ID. WTF?

So they have an online form that that asks you for your name and to upload legal documentation and then they ask you to email them with the same information and different proof. Madness. I emailed back on my case questioning why they had now asked for something different and pointed out that in the UK photo ID is NOT a legal requirement and that my Deed Poll document that I had sent them twice was a legal document here in the UK. The request for name details and photo ID reply from them came back to me within FOUR minutes of my original submission. I have since sent them two other messages and have heard NOTHING back from Facebook in over SEVENTY TWO HOURS, three fucking days! So quick to shut me down and so slow to get me back up and running again!

I have now sent them a very sarcastic email as follows:
Wow, it took you FOUR minutes to backtrack on your requirements and get me to request my name change via email with different documentation despite my request containing a legal document. I have since replied to you TWICE and have received NO reply from you in the last SEVENTY TWO HOURS Not exactly the way to give customer service!
I will wait a further twenty four hours to see if I get a reply before approaching them with plan B. Watch this space as it is going to be a real doozy if things go as I expect them to!

Saturday, 13 December 2014

Late start, cafe, royalties and ice hockey

Today started the other side of midday. Can't complain about that. Really didn't want to get up but at least I felt refreshed after LOTS of sleep :)

I treated Toni, Sam and Pam to a nice fry up at the cafe round the corner before we had to head back to do a bit of housework. This didn't last long though as we all got bored but we did make a start LOL.

In exciting news I noticed a credit of £1.97 to my bank account today from PRS Ltd. Turns out my time in Orpheum is actually earning me some royalties now. Sure it's not much but can you imagine how proud I am knowing that I actually got paid royalties for my work with a band. Hooray for digital downloads! Very, very happy with that!

The rest of the day was spent watching How I Met Your Mother which just continues to get better and better. We are on Season Four now.

Things were rounded off with a bit of ice hockey. We watched the Islanders v Blackhawks at midnight to get us through to 3am for the Rangers game. Well that had been the plan. Toni crashed out on the sofa at 01:45. I made it to the end of the Islanders game (which they won 3 - 2) and then caught the end of Maple Leads v Red Wings (which Maple Leafs won 4 - 1). I decided to watch the Rangers game first tomorrow instead and so hit the pit otherwise I would never get up in the morning!