It’s A Shame I Wasn’t More Awake

The hot weather of the last few days has broken and I think it’s meant to be more “normal” over the next week or so. I don’t mind really. As long as I can drink enough water I’m generally happy in any temperature. So, last night I woke with the clapping of thunder and I pulled my window shut. I slowly decided whether to properly get and and watch the lightning as there is a decent vista from the back bedroom but my decision was – go back to sleep. I’ve seen storms before.

When I woke and eventually checked my phone there were loads of notifications of movement detected from my home security system. I wrote about this in this communication. It turns out that the lightning set off the record feature of the cameras and I got some shots of the sky being lit up by electrical discharge.

https://youtu.be/BKmHXTR2eLc

The green bits and pieces in the video are where the camera thinks there is movement so generally they are best to ignore. Of the videos the camera recorded this one was the best with a decent image of the strike.

This is communication number 1958 and so here are some things, curated by me, that happened in that year of the common era:

  • Sputnik 1 falls to Earth and burns up.
  • Bertrand Russell launches CND.
  • BBC Radiophonic workshop is established.
  • The last fully rigged sail trading ship sinks carrying guano.
  • The first motorway opens in the UK.

Not Sure How I Feel About This

The village in which I live is under attack. The attack is probably the thing that is needed for the country. But I don’t like it and it’s raising lots of horrible feelings and selfishness. Part of the local council plan involves adding 900 houses to the village where I have lived for almost twenty years. I wrote about this before in this communication. 900 houses. Right outside my garden. It makes me angry while at the same time I know housing has to go somewhere and I’ve always thought that people who protest should accept progress for the greater good.

So, first I want to recognise the need for new housing. Apparently there is a need for lots of homes for people and they need to go somewhere. I suspect it is easier to build on fresh ground than to rework brownfield sites to make them habitable. We all know that the housing developers and land owners are in the back pockets of many Tories and probably lots of other MPs too. Where I live is like Tory world centre and most of the local councillors are that way inclined too. So I do believe that the housing companies get the easier route for more financial security rather than actually doing what is right for the environment and local communities. That said, there is a need for housing.

I live in Tonbridge and Malling local district. I live almost at the northern tip of the district. I live in the relatively poor part of the district. The southern area is much wealthier. Do I think there’s a correlation to where the new housing is going and the relative wealth of the area? Of course I do. The wealthy have the ability to fight these things or at least bribe their way to not having the new houses nearby. It’s always the poorer people who get fucked over by those in power because for the powerful it’s about power and money and nothing else really.

The Medway Gap area has had masses of housing development over the last twenty years and it continues. The company that owns the land, Trenport, I’ve written about before. They like to think they are doing good things I suspect but ultimately don’t care as long as they can make themselves more powerful and more wealthy. Here’s a picture of what land is going to be developed:

My Feelings Are Unsure About This
My Feelings Are Unsure About This

As you can see in the picture Eccles is the blob of housing just right of centre and the pink land is the area going to be developed. I’m pretty sure you can see that it’s all fields. Arable land for growing crops to feed this country. Now, to be clear, not all that land is going to be housing. Some of it will be made into recreational land along with a village car park and community centre. We already have a community centre, it’s the church and hall which can be used by locals. Parking is utter shit in my village but the new car park won’t be big enough, they never are. I think there’s a new shop involved there too but what happens to the current village shop?

All the land heading SW from the village of Eccles is my current view out the back of my house. I don’t really want that to change. I can see for miles. I can see fields and trees and the woods in the distance. It’s a calming positively enduring view that helps my mental health. It’s one of the reasons I bought this house.

I’ve looked at the “consultation” online and the questions are clever. One of them asks what I use the field for currently. Well, in reality I walk or run or cycle on the footpaths. The developers are going to keep the footpaths so that should make me happy but it doesn’t. The reason I walk along those particular footpaths is that the outdoor experience is best there. Wide open spaces in the middle of a barley field really make you feel good. Just having the footpath there through houses isn’t going to be the same.

I’m stuck. I don’t want this development. For mostly selfish reasons. I like my view. I like the fields. I like the ambiance of the village. It feels “country” while entirely surrounded by massive urban sprawl. I know we need houses. I just think there’s somewhere else they could go.

This is communication number 1956 so here are a couple of things that happened that year:

  • IATA finalises the phonetic alphabet.
  • 96 US congress members sign a manifesto against de-segregation.
  • The last British troops leave Egypt.
  • The world’s first industrial scale nuclear power plant is opened at Calder Hall in England.

Where Is Everything?

Just logged into 360 Radar to see what’s flying around [not that I hear anything]. I was just curious but I was shocked at what I found! I wasn’t shocked. I was pleasantly surprised but not shocked. I was trying to write in a click-bait format then, but I should’ve made the title completely click bait. Now I think about it, a lot of the titles of communications on this site are a bit click baity. I don’t really say what the communication is about I just write an obscure title. I can assure that writing them that way makes things much harder to look up in the future.

Nothing Over Kent
Nothing Over Kent

Nothing up there really. The Kent skies seem rather empty. Oh well, the flights will be heading over soon.

This is communication number 1955 and so here are some things that happened in that year of the common era:

  • 60,000 non-whites are forcibly evicted from their homes in South Africa.
  • 83 people are killed in a crash at Le Mans.
  • Ruth Ellis is the last woman to be executed [murdered by the state] in the UK.
  • Cardiff is declared as the capital of Wales.

Modern Problems, I Know

I have a cheap home security camera system in my house. It uses my phone to know when I’m in the house and when I’m not, assuming that I always have my phone on me. I think I can set how far away from home it activates the camera alert system. I never normally have a problem with this system but the other day I was in the park playing cricket and it turns out I was on the border of the geofence. I never really hear my phone so I didn’t get to notice the alerts for auto-arming until I got home!

Geo-Notifications

I should have counted the notifications, but I didn’t. Next time I head to the park I’ll make sure to take note of how many times I get told about the system arming or disarming.

This is communication number 1950 and so here are a few things that happened in that year of the common era:

  • 64 die when a submarine sinks in the Thames Estuary.
  • South Africa passes a law to formally segregate the races.
  • The Korean War begins.
  • The Roman Catholic Church makes up some shit about the virgin Mary.
  • US military advisers are sent to French Indo-China to advise the French.

The Years Thing

I’ve taken to writing a few things about what happened in each year of the same number as the communication that I post. I’m can only vaguely remember why I started this and I will do my best to explain. I also want to give some reasoning to point out that I’m not a complete shit and quite respective of other cultures [generally].

Quite a while ago the number of communications written for this site was a question in a quiz at work. I was somewhat surprised that people cared enough to try and create a question based on what I write but you should also be warned that a lot of flattery is just used sarcastically. Anyway, I started adding the odd tweet after a communication tweet just saying what number those words were.

I think I might have started doing some “year” things way back in communications 1660 or so as it seemed that a lot was happening around the world that time and maybe I should just add it as a feature of this site. I think I gave up. I’m not sure what happened and I’m not even sure how long ago I was writing those communications. FYI I’m also considering shortening “communication” to Comms but that just feels wrong at the moment. I made a conscious choice to call these things communications and so I should continue to use my own terminology.

Recently I have been heading to communication number 2000 and so I wanted to make sure that I mark that with the respect that is suitable and required. Also, I wanted to mark some of the things in history that I feel people might not know. Most of the things I have written at the bottom of my verbiage aren’t going to be the most famous events that people seem to know. I have deliberately chosen particular happenings that I think tell a story or give some ideas of the human sacrifice to get us to this point.

The things I chose to write at the end of each communication are what I find interesting. I’m trying to point out the tragedies, the hard fought rights, the little things that show just how terrible and horrible we are as a species to our fellow people. Once of the things I have learnt in the short period that I’ve been doing this the amount that countries/governments/organisations have changed over a short period of time. In the early 1900s as I am now the “west” are still carving up Africa and the Middle East along with massive political changes in the far east. It’s quite amazing really. I wonder if growing up in the relative stability of the Cold War gave me a false sense of security with the political organisation of the world. As I write this Afghanistan is going to shit, again.

There is quite an issue with dealing with what year it is. I am using the calendar of the “common era” or at least the one that most of the world agrees to use to cope with organising business. I do not endorse that particular calendar or any other. Many cultures use different calendar systems and as explained in this podcast the casual use of language can really exclude or affect many people.

So, here we go with a few things that happened in 1932 [according to the common calendar].

  • The Anglican church bans the church re-marriage of divorced people.
  • Johnny Weissmuller first stars as Tarzan. I write this as those films were such a part of my childhood and I now suspect they are hugely problematic!
  • WW1 veterans march on Washington DC to claim money they are owed – clearly Govt gives very few shits about the human cost of imperialism and armies.
  • A hurricane kills around 2500 in Cube.

Missed Opportunity

These last few weeks have mostly been about me building a sleeping system for my kids. I have no idea if there’ll be pictures on here because it’s their room but I will end up explaining bits and pieces. I have completed four days of work on the system and it will end up being a good five days, the last day is going to be spread out over the next week with odd jobs here and there. Overall I am very pleased with the end product. Sure there are shitty bits but they are mostly not obvious on first inspection so I can live with that. There’s also the balance of time/effort/money with caringness.

I was on the phone recently with Jase and we talked about the flooring I was planning. He told me that he had left a message below some laminate flooring in a house he used to live in. I decided I should do the same. I was going to place a newspaper page under the floor, that would give a date and a rough idea of what was going on in the world at the time and then I could write a note and leave it there.

I spent a few days thinking about the note. Should I say who we are and what we are doing with out lives right now? Should I give my opinions on the world at the moment? I was going to leave a note saying that we had enjoyed living in the house and hope that the next people do also – I don’t think I’ll be lifting the flooring in my time in the house. I decided I wouldn’t write about who we are as I knew it would end up being a rant about what is going on in the world at the moment.

I thought I could write about the newspaper I left under the flooring with some comments on the headlines but that would very easily end up being a rant at the sheer incompetence of the government and world leaders at dealing with the PANDEMIC we are trying to live through. I considered writing about the lying racist we have in charge of the country at the moment but I thought that wouldn’t really bring any cheer to whomever reads the note. I decided I shouldn’t write anything and just leave the newspaper there as a small surprise.

Then, this morning, after I have finished the floor, genius struck. I should have written a note as if it was the start of a bad horror movie. I could have written about how I hope that the new owners enjoy their time in the house but that we were terrified of the movings and happenings in the house and that a number of pets had died strangely. This would have been very funny. But only to me as I know that all that bollocks isn’t real. I don’t think I would have done this as maybe the people who live here would be believers and I would cause them problems. Also, they probably would be able to see what I thought as I’ll probably be dead by then.

Still, it would have been funny.

This is communication 1914 and so in keeping with recent tradition I present some things that happened in the year 1914:

  • Mother’s Day becomes a thing in the US and is promoted by companies seeking to profit.
  • Gavrilo Princip did a thing.
  • The Panama Canal is inaugurated.
  • The last know passenger pigeon died.

Maybe, Maybe Not

As part of this summer I went to the Imperial War Museum in Duxford. It’s a great place and I’ve been there loads in the past. This time was to talk bollocks with an old friend AB. We wandered around and shared stories along with catching up with what’s been going on for the last two years. In the American hangar we saw a B25 Mitchell which had apparently once been the gate guardian at a US Base in Germany. This meant some soldiers would sign the plane by scratching their name into the skin of the aircraft.

Elvish History
Elvish History

If you look carefully you can see that the name in the middle is Elvis. This is plausible as he spent time in the US Army and was in Germany. The fact that he spelt his last name wrong shouldn’t get in the way of a good story.

Maybe Not
Maybe Not

You might have to look at the original pictures, click on them, to be able to see the details!

This is number 1905 and so continuing a recent feature I give you some things that happened in that year [common era]:

  • A boiler explosion in the Grover Shoe Factory kills 58.
  • Einstein submits his photoelectric effect paper.
  • The French pass a law concerning the separation of church and state.

Keeping Traditions

I’ve been spending some time at Linton Park Cricket Club recently and although I regularly try and walk around the ground a few times each visit I went in the opposite direction on my last attempt. I am normally hanging around in the nets and when I go for a lap I start there and head away from the pavilion. The lap in question started north of the pavilion and so I walked in a clockwise direction [when viewed from above]. It’s always good to approach things from a new point of view and I thought this would just look a little different. I was not expecting the result of this walk to be such a surprise!

LPCC Tree
LPCC Tree

On the return leg towards the pavilion I saw this tree. A whole tree growing in within the boundary. In the year or so that I had been coming to this ground I hadn’t seen the tree. I just hadn’t noticed it at all when I was completing laps in a positive direction [when viewed from above]. Why had I not seen such an obvious thing? Why had this tree not been part of my viewing on the numerous times I would have walked past it in the past? What is going on? It’s clearly not a newly planted tree and given its size it’s been there for a while and anyway, why would you plane a new tree within the boundary? Although the club itself and ground is a lot older than the tree so there are questions I need answered.

There is something called the Mandela effect. It’s not a real thing. But everyone has things that make them question what they know or can remember. The Mandela effect is meant to explain a mis-remembering of an event or thing. When I saw this tree my first thought was – that’s a surprise, how come I didn’t notice it before? My first thought was not – wow, that must have popped into existence from nowhere I am clearly in a new timeline and therefore aliens or whatever bogeyman you want. People don’t understand just how terrible human memories are. The general impression is that memories are like perfect video cameras and we can fast rewind through any event to see the truth of what happened or at least the truth of the experience we had. The reality is that human memory is fucking terrible and can’t be relied on at all. I am dreading being called as a witness to something where my memory is required. It’s quite easy to change how you remember things. Just remember them. Every time you remember something you change your memory. Have fun with that knowledge.

I Get Scores

The latest version of WordPress, my CMS of choice, likes to tell me how good the titles of my communications are. I think it measures length of the title and how rare the words are? I’m not sure. I do know that it seems to want my communication titles to look like a Daily Mail headline and I am NOT going to do that. This is what I get in the top corner when I save a draft of a communication:

Headline Analyser
Headline Analyser

This was my score for a communication a few days ago. 43/100. Pretty poor. But actually not as bad as this current draft which has the grand total of 0/100. I don’t really care. The whole idea behind this site was that it was for me. Therefore the titles are deliberately vague and make things more “mysterious”. It does make finding things quite tough but the search function seems to work reasonably well.

I Suspect It’s Me

Meaning
Meaning

These roadworks were meant to be completed on a Saturday but as I drove past the sign on Friday it had changed and I just saw the above message. There was bad weather forecast for the Saturday – potentially thunderstorms – but as Saturday got closer the predictions turned to just rain and patchy rain at that. I do suspect that these works could have continued as the rain wasn’t that heavy on said Saturday.

My issue here is that the road sign is ambiguous and I can’t decide if it’s just me or whether the intended meaning is really clear. I know I definitely have a literal language problem and I don’t really like ambiguity in things where the final meaning is meant to be clear. Humans didn’t spend thousands of years developing complex language so that intended meaning could be vague.

Does this sign say that the roadworks are cancelled for 1 day or does it just state the fact that the bad weather will last for one day. I am currently unsure. I suspect it’s the former but it is very unclear. Cancelled is a strange word to use if the roadworks are moved by one day – postponed would be a better word there. A couple of commas wouldn’t go amiss either. So, until I attempt to drive this road a little later today I will not know the answer to my query. Oh, and fuck British Gas.