Sunday, July 31, 2011

Nothing Says Empire Quite Like...

The British Museum. And that's where I spent my day today.

It's like walking into my art history book, the early one. There's the Rosetta Stone. And the Parthenon Marbles. And Egyptian art. It's truly overwhelming. There's just so much there that it's hard to imagine as you move from room to room.

I went thinking that the things I most wanted to see were the Parthenon Marbles and the Sutton Hoo hoard. Because of the layout, you walk through a fair bit of exciting stuff before you get to either. The first thing I saw that really got me was the Rosetta Stone. I guess I didn't realize it was there, but it was. And thinking about how it was used to figure out heiroglyphs and stuff, it just blew me away. And then, of course, I laughed inside thinking about the joke about the American who wants everything in English because if it was good enough for Jesus... you know, that one.

I read the side card description and thought about all those orientalists, French and English especially, who'd studied all sorts of ancient languages, and how few people I know who speak more than three languages. (I can claim two only.) But those orientalists learned amazing ancient languages.

I saw these amazing Assyrian bas reliefs. There were two walls of a lion hunt. The first wall was going on the hunt; the second was coming back. Apparently, the lion hunt was quite successful (unless you're a lion, in which case they were horrid), because the men were carrying all sorts of lions. Look at this one on the left. Isn't the detail of his tongue sticking out just amazing?

And this one. He's all wounded, and spewing blood or something, and it's horrific, but also beautiful. I just looked and looked at these bas reliefs, and the details made me wish I could touch them and all, because there was something so immediate about them. (But of course, I didn't, so I didn't get arrested. And that's good.)

It just amazes me that you're allowed to take photos in the museum. And they didn't even have flash rules. (But I mostly went without flash, since the flash tends to wash out the shadows on this sort of thing, and then you can't see it really well.)

Finally, I reached the Parthenon Marbles. And I'm sad to say, they just aren't as wonderful as they are in pictures, especially of pictures set in the context of the Parthenon itself. So I was a bit disappointed (but still, the Assyrian lions!).

I felt sort of the same about the Sutton Hoo hoard, alas. And I didn't get to see the round reading room, because it's used as an exhibit room right now, for an exhibit of medieval relics, and so is covered up. I know! But still, Assyrian lions!

And there were mummies, too. Mummies sort of weird me out. I almost get sick thinking about people using "mummy" as medicine back in early modern times. Bleach!

Something I notice at museums: I admit I take tons of pictures, but only of stuff I think is really cool. I don't get people who walk by, take a picture without even looking, and then do the same, again and again.

I love this sort of library room. It's like a fantasy library to me, though probably not especially convenient.

Saturday, July 30, 2011

Where I Went Today

Amazing. I knew some of the history about Inigo Jones (and really, is there a better name?) designing it, and such. But I hadn't realized that Charles I was executed right in front. Lots of history here. They have a great audio guide. And of course, the building is just beautiful, stunning.

I got a late start this morning because of the laundry. I woke up early, and went down about 5am, and couldn't get the washing machine to work. I'd already loaded my laundry in, though. Then I saw the sign that said the machine's shut off from 10:30pm to 6am. So I went back up, and down again at 6pm. I tried several times, and then decided I was SOL, and then wondered if there's a seasonal time change, and if I was somehow caught up in that. So I went back down at 7am, and within a few minutes, I got it to work! But then I noticed that the sign says it takes a minimum of two hours (TWO HOURS, PEOPLE!) to run the wash machine. So I went back up, and came down later to put it in the dryer, which also took its sweet time. And then it was time to forage for lunch and go explore.

I'd planned to go to the Banqueting Hall and then on to the National Portrait Gallery, but I took longer in the Banqueting Hall than I'd thought I would (and it was worth every minute!), and got waylaid by the Horse Guards museum on the way, and had to go in. (I admire horses a lot. What can I say.)

Friday, July 29, 2011

Buckingham Palace

Another day, more art. And I say that with a smile.

I spent much of the day using my "Royal Day" pass to the Queen's Gallery, the Royal Mews (horsies!), and Buckingham Palce.

There was a gorgeous Dutch landscapes exhibit at the Gallery, and it was, well, gorgeous.

The Mews were cool. I tend to like horse stuff a lot, so that's that.

Buckingham Palace was big, really big. Some of the rooms are absolutely beautiful. The music room actually looks welcoming, in an 18th century way. I could imagine actually being happy listening to music there.

There were two special exhibits. One, the wedding dress. I'm sure you've all heard about that. It was as elaborate and beautiful in person as on TV, though the disembodiedness of it was strange.

And then there was a Faberge collection. Holy cow, there are some beautiful, amazing pieces. And then you look at when they were collected, some of them. The ones collected after the Russian revolution, there must be a story behind each of them, I bet. And also, the ones collected in the period before WWII, during what in the US was a depression. It's hard to imagine the amount of money spent on a little, tiny, decorative object when so many people were having such a hard time just getting by.

I've been trying to do my laundry since I got home. It's two and a half flights (yes, I know, that doesn't make sense) to the basement, and I've been going up and down, down and up carrying my load of laundry, but each time, the washer has been full and on. Except this time, there was a woman just loading it. I wanted to beg her to let me put mine in instead.

Why is it that other people dare to want to do their laundy at a time that inconveniences ME?

So now I have to decide: stay up and put mine in at about 10pm, and then stay awake to put it in the dryer and pull it out. Or go to bed early, and hope to sleep quickly so that I wake early and get it done then. I think the latter.

Jet lag is causing me sleeping weirdness. I can't seem to get sleepy and fall asleep between, say, 7pm and 2am. And that's meant going to sleep at 2am or so, and waking up later than I'd like to get a start on the day. But I think it's caught up with me, because I'm pretty sleepy now, at 8:30 about, and if I go to sleep soon, it will feel great. And I'll wake early.

ps. This is from a gate at Green Park, right near the big Buckingham Palace gates. This isn't a great picture, but how come there's a bison and a sort of gargoyly face on this gate?

Thanks to the internet, an answer! It's the Canada Gate, a gift from Canada for the memorial for Queen Victoria!

Here's another view, slightly brighter.

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Westminster Abbey

For the first two days here, I'd bought a 48 hour ticket to the Big Bus Tour thingy. The idea is that there are three bus lines (a lot of overlap between the two I rode on). The blue line runs a big loop, and plays information on tapes. The red line runs much of the blue line loop, but has live commentors (who were LOTS of fun when I heard them). I don't know about the other line, because I never got to it. The ticket also included the boat ride I took yesterday (which is why I went then).

The bus was a GREAT way for me to get the beginnings of my bearings, for sure. Today was my first day totally travelling by subway, and it's complicated because I'm near the Paddington Station, which is normally served by the Bakerloo line, the Circle line, the district line, and um, er... something else?

But, from now until the end of August, the Circle and District line parts are closed here. So I'm basically learning alternative routes. I AM learning, though! The construction is part of the huge effort to get everything ready for the London Olympics in 2012. And I have to say, from what I've seen, they're really working hard on the infrastructure.

Today I went to Westminster Abbey. It was, amazing. Totally amazing. I didn't take pictures inside, because you're not allowed to, but... did I mention, amazing? The best parts: when I went in, one of the docent folks told me that there would be a service in the King Edward the Confessor chapel, and since that's normally closed except for worship, I might be interested. I was. So I went. And there I was, sitting with Edward the Confessor, Edward Longshanks, Edward III, Richard II, Henry V. Pretty amazing place, imagine. I'm not a big monarchist, but these, these were some powerful folks.

The priest was really friendly, and we chatted a bit after, and she suggested I go to visit the Chapel of St Faith. She said it's open for private prayer, but it's fine to go in and sit, just open the door. So, I continued on my way, thinking to keep my eyes open for it.

I saw the tomb of Henry Cary (or Carey), Lord Hunsdon. If you're a Shakespeare type, you're nodding. If not, you maybe haven't heard of him, but he was the Lord Chamberlain of Queen Elizabeth I. The Lord Chamberlain was one of the three most important officials in the Elizabethan household court; basically, he controlled who got in for an appointment, or who got an appointment in the first place, and when, etc. But that's not why he's important to people like me. Nope. Remember you've heard of Shakespeare's playing company, the King's Men, right? But before there was a King of England in 1603, and the law was changed so that only members of the Royal family could sponsor a playing company, there was the Lord Chamberlain's Men! So that's a cool connection.

Also very cool: I learned that Carey was Elizabeth I's cousin! His Mom was Anne Boleyn's sister, Mary. (And since H8 might have had relations with Mary, Carey might have been even more closely related to Elizabeth.)

I saw Poet's corner, and touched Chaucer's tomb and Spenser's (which, I read, was originally put up by Anne Clifford, when she was the Countess of Dorset! Yes, THE Anne Clifford), and well, that was pretty amazing, very moving.

I can't say why, but it was. And shortly after that was when I saw the door to St. Faith's Chapel. So I warily opened it, and went in, and sat down. I was the only person in there for a while, and then people came in, and then left, and I closed the door again, and just sat in the quiet. It was, well, just calming and lovely, sitting in the very simple, quiet chapel, a few feet from the hustle and bustle. I was sort of surprised to see something so quiet and relatively uncluttered and unadorned.

And then I went on, looking at more of the Abbey

I was interested in seeing monuments and such to some fairly minor folks, and then thought to ask about some really important but minor folks. Mostly, I was thinking of Henry, the older son of James I, who died as a kid, and also Arthur, the older son of Henry VII (yes, Henry VIII had a big brother), who also died as a kid. So I asked one of the docent folks. He had this little book about where people are buried, and figured out that Arthur was buried in Worcestor Cathedral, but couldn't figure out Henry. Oh well. (He didn't quite believe me at first that Henry VIII had an older brother, but then he found him listed.)

Then, I was taking a break for water at the cafe, and there was that same book! So, of course, you know how I feel about dead guys! I bought it, and I was able to find Henry, and he was buried in the chapel of Henry VII, along with Elizebeth, the Queen of Bohemia (James I's daughter), and a whole bunch of other folks. They're all in the floor in the chapel near Mary Stuart and Margaret Beaufort. I backtracked to visit. I'm probably the only person who noticed that little marker all day, and made anything of it.

Finally, I made my way around the nave, and saw Sir Isaac Newton and Charles Darwin. (I saw Handel in Poet's corner, too). But then I was surprised to see Edward Elgar right near them (it's a memorial, and not his grave site). I don't know, it was weirdly moving, maybe because I don't think of him as a really dead guy? And I do like his music.

And that was my day!

I've been thinking about what I found most moving. I mean, I expected, Elizabeth I to be, but it wasn't. Nor were any of the kings, really, though I enjoyed the service in the Edward the Confessor Chapel, and was amazed to be surrounded by so many kings. And, of course, I couldn't help but think about that moment in Henry V where Henry talks about having Richard II reinterred with great ceremony, and there I was at the tomb he refers to.

Chaucer and Spenser were moving. I touched the monument of each. I hope that's okay. (At least I wasn't walking over them.) And Darwin and Newton. And Elgar. And, of course, just the sheer overwhelming number of tombs and monuments. I kept trying to figure out the Latin inscriptions, especially for the medieval looking monuments/tombs, the ones that look like a flattened knight. (I finally remembered that "miles" means "knight" and that helped. Because otherwise, these guys were all sharing the same name.)

For three days, it's been pretty darned incredible! I have an appointment at Buckingham Palace tomorrow. (A ticket appointment; seriously, what would I even have to say to Elizabeth II?) (That would be a good contest! I could send the winner a postcard! What could I possibly say to E2?)

Wish me a good night's sleep!

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Jumping History

Yesterday, I was at the Tower of London, the oldest tower (the White Tower) of which was built "by" (why do we use "by" for someone who gave an order and probably didn't do a bit of the labor?) William the Conqueror after the Norman invasion.* But even that was recent compared to the wall built by the Romans around Lundinium in the area.

Today, I finished up the two day Big Bus tour of London ticket by getting on a barge thing on the Thames and riding up to Greenwhich. I got to see the New Globe from the river, which was a far better view than I'd had before. It took longer than I'd thought it would, so I revised my plans a bit from the Westminster Cathedral (which you totally know is high on my list, but which I expect to take a long time at) to something a bit more modest, the Cabinet War Roomwhere Churchill's cabinet had done their war work, especially during the Battle of Britain and then under the rocket attacks.

So there's the connecting theme, in a way: invasion, successful compared to invasion, only threatened. (Horribly threatened, though.)

I'm not a big war buff, not of any war, but the War Cabinet Rooms were fascinating. I can't imagine working there while bombs and such went off above. The Churchill museum is in the same place, part of the underground complex, and also pretty darned interesting. They had a bunch of the medals he'd been awarded. Now, you know me; I want to have seen his George (go RedCrosse!), but it wasn't there.

I'm downloading a bird guide for Britain now, hoping I can get a clue about some of the birds I've seen. I've seen at least two gulls, starlings, some pigeons, and a cormorant, but not much else yet. (The gulls, compared to, say, SF Bay, seem sparse.)

*Does everyone else use jokes about a bunch of guys named Norman to try to get students to remember 1066? Just me?

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

A Second Day in Shakespearelandia!

And it was a good one, in all sorts of ways.

Most important, I got to have a blogger-meet-up lunch with Susan! It was fun, and really nice to have a good lunch and chat with her. (Hi Susan!)

We met at the British Library, so I got there a bit early and saw the science fiction exhibition, and also the gallery with the Magna Carta and a First Folio. (Life is good!) (Our department is supposed to move to a new building in a few years; my fantasy is looking like the King's Library right now.

After lunch, I went to the Tower of London, which was very fun. I took one of the guided tours by a Yeoman Warder of the Tower; he was one of those people who obviously loves teaching and history, and gave a really fun, interesting tour. I saw the crown jewels, which were sparkly, but I was way more into the armor and stuff. I did learn why all the jewels and ornamental stuff (except for one salt thingy) were from 1661 or after; the Warder told me that Cromwell had had earlier stuff melted down and sold because the government needed money. Interesting!

I didn't get to see everything, but it was great, and I'm hoping to return.

And now, to bed!

Monday, July 25, 2011


I'm here, here in Shakespearelandia!

I got here this morning, and found my way to the nearest station, and then walked to where I'm staying. I've got a nice little place, which seems fine.

I did notice immediately, that a LOT of people smoke here. Maybe I just don't notice at home, but it's noticable here.

I didn't sleep a lot or well on the plane, but I did have my contacts out for a while. I wear hard contacts, and my eyes get itchy and nasty if they're in more than about 20 hours at a time.

I also tend to get a weird motion-sicky feeling after I've been driving, on a boat, or flying for more than about 10 hours.

Thus, I was tired, and I decided to nap for a bit. I woke up, feeling MUCH better, about 2pm, and went out to see what I could see. Happily, there's a "Big Bus" tour thing between my place and the station (so I'd seen it on the way here), so I took the advice I got before, bought myself a ticket, and hopped on. I just rode around and saw things and listened to the taped information for the full circle, which took about 3 hours. Happily, the weather was lovely, not too warm or cold, and not raining.

I was probably more excited than most to go by the Marble Gate, right near what used to by Tyburn (where they hanged folks in early modern England). I admit to being fascinated by the folks who got branded with a T so that they couldn't use benefit of clergy again.

I saw the Tower! Westmister Abbey! The Thames!

Speaking of the Thames. I'm guessing most people aren't as naive as I am, but I was an adult before I realized that "Thames" is pronounced "Tems." There are lots of other words that seem weirdly spelled to many Americans, Gloucester, Worcestershire, and so on.

So as I was riding the bus and listening, it took me more than a moment to connect what I saw as "Grosvenor" with what I heard as "Gruvner." I don't think I've ever said the word aloud, though, so I at least I wasn't publicly shamed. (Until now.)

I got myself some fish and chips on the way home (because I'm just that much of a tourist!). I have to say, if you haven't had more than a protein bar since the plane ride, then fish and chips tastes incredibly, wonderfully yummy!

I'm almost ready to head to bed again.

Saturday, July 23, 2011

Last Minute

I leave for Shakespearelandia tomorrow!

I've never been there before, so I'm super excited, and on edge. I doubt I'll sleep tonight. If you have ideas of what I should do, please post them!

I'm mostly packed except for bathroom stuff and stuff I'll wash tonight.

Thank goodness for good friends.

And at the same time as I'm utterly excited, I'm also horrified by what happened in Norway.

And glad for Evans, sad for Schleck. Both are amazing riders (as are others who bike at that level).

And frustrated by politicians. It's time to raise taxes, folks, and pay for our education system, infrastructure, and social services. And while we're at it, can we get ourselves out of wars?

Friday, July 22, 2011


The worst thing about packing is trying on pants to find some that fit not too tightly and aren't really old and tattered.


Single Minded

I went to a friend's house for a Tour breakfast get-together, and it was great. The past few stages have just been amazing riding.

As I drove home, I merged onto the freeway ahead of a light blue/teal truck, and thought, "Astana." And then I laughed at myself, until a red truck came up, and I thought, "Cofidis."

It makes me want to get a team color car!

Wednesday, July 20, 2011


I bike on Wednesday afternoons with a group of other women. They're good folks, friendly and good company on a ride.

Earlier this week, B emailed me about doing a short ride this week and then having a casual get together at her place. And, despite the horrid heat, that's what we did today.

It means a lot to me, more than I can easily articulate, to have this community, and to have them care enough to ride on a hot day and get together after to relax, eat, drink, and chat.

Half an Hour

It's been a tad warm this week, so I've resorted (with some friends) to the campus pool for some easy laps for exercise. I'm one of those people who had basic swimming lessons as a kid, and is happy to swim, but I don't swim fast or efficiently. I still love the side stroke, which probably isn't even an official stroke, but is relaxing and comfortable for me.

Why is it, then, that a half an hour lazily swimming laps makes me ravenous, way more than an hour playing outside (running-ish) or several hours biking?

(The campus pool requires some strategy: dinner time is ideal for people like me. Later, and the pool is filled with whatever sports camp campers are staying on campus, usually high school age kids. If they're female, they're loud at high pitches. If male, loud at a lower pitch.)

Monday, July 18, 2011

Less Than a Week Now

Things are coming together, and not.

I have a couple pairs of shorts that I love. They're unfashionable as all get out, but comfy, with pockets, and cool. They have mesh in the pockets, so when you get dunked kayaking or whatever, the water drains quickly. Unfortunately, the mesh got holes in places, because I tend to put my car keys in the front pocket, and change in the other.

So today, I went to the fabric store and asked for advice, and the woman there recommended some iron-on patches. You can see where this is going, right? I put a bigger hole in one of the nylon pockets with the iron than had been there before. And, how is it that my body heat trying to cut patches can make the patches stick together, but an iron not quite hot enough to melt nylon can't? I think I finally succeeded, and I hope the patches last a while.

I'm trying to eat down the stuff in my freezer, so that the housesitter can fill it with his own stuff. (Though he's welcome to eat whatever I've left, too.) It's educational to realize that I have several bags of frozen veggie things that have been there a while, because I keep intending to eat more veggies, but then don't eat as much as I intended to, and then forget.

A semester is both a long time, and not at all much time. When you're figuring out stuff, it seems like there's so much to take care of and figure out. And it seems like there's so much happening here that I'll miss. But when I come back, it seems like I haven't been gone more than a tiny bit of time. Packing for distinct seasons takes some thought, I've noticed.

I need to put together the books I'm taking, and figure out what to do with them packing-wise. Books get heavy fast.

I need to send in a picture and a short bio. I found a picture that's less horrible than most, but I hate writing bios. I wish I could just write a totally fictional bio about being a pumpkin rancher or something.

Heck, we should all figure out the best fictional bio to write!

PS. Today is a rest day on the Tour. I'm now officially rooting for Thomas Voeckler all the way. Wouldn't that be fun!

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Unexpectedly Liberating

I was busy in the office for a while today, sorting out teaching notes to have made into pdfs (rather than taking stacks of paper notes with me), and I had some extra time before I could do go to the rec center to turn back the kayak I rented the other day. So I started sorting through some of my course and grade files.

There's no reason I need grade files from during my grad school times, right? I thought not. Nor from my previous job? Recycle! (I do go through and pull off paperclips, because it's not that bad and then we don't have to buy as many new ones.)

And committee meeting stuff! I got rid of tons of that from previous years. (The official meeting notes are always available on line, and more reliable than anything I would have written.)

It felt amazingly liberating and good. I think I got rid of a good foot of files.

It actually felt like I accomplished something, even though it wasn't something that had to be done before I left. (I also accomplished some of those things, too.)

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Baby Artichoke

I'm excited! I doubt I'll get to eat it before I leave, but someone will!

Monday, July 11, 2011

Linguists Have Fun and a Question

The folks over at the Language Log are having a lot of fun with the latest XKCD comic.


An unrelated question: does anyone else see a resemblance between pictures of Michael Palin as a young man and Frank Schleck? No? Only me?

Sunday, July 10, 2011

32 and a Half Miles

I wasn't going to go that far, but that's what happened. I was riding one of my favorite roads, to the east of my little city, on the side of a lake. And I felt good, really good. So I decided to go all the way around the lake.

I only had one water bottle, but there's a bar and a nature center (not the same) about midway, and I was pretty darned sure I could get water at either, or if not, could ride a couple miles out of my way to a small town and get water (or other stuff) at a gas station.

Stopping for water at bars amuses me. There were four people sitting at the bar, just past midday, and a kid climbing around stuff to the side, and the barkeep, who was kind enough to give me ice and cold water. The people in the bar were friendly in that way that people are friendly when they think you're a bit crazy, but harmless. It's cool in the bar, but I'm always really glad to get out of the smokiness. (I don't know why they're so smoky, since there's a no-smoking law, I thought?)

I also stopped at the nature center, a bit further on, because I realized that a bathroom break would be nice. The guy behind the desk was equally friendly, but in the way that seemed like he thought it's a great idea to be out playing on one's bike rather than a bit crazy.

And now I'm more tuckered than I should be. I was slow. I think I should have taken some real food, or at least eaten a second packet of sports bean things. But I'm not quite sure why I'm feeling more tuckered than I expected. I'm guessing: 1) I'm not in as good a shape as I thought, or as I've typically been at this point in the summer, or 2) I didn't eat enough before I left. (I'm guessing if that's the case, I should feel better pretty quickly since I had a yummy peanut butter sandwich on homemade bread.)

Countdown: Two Weeks

I need to buy a rolling suitcase. Any suggestions, esp re size? (This is for a checked bag, not a carry on.) What size? Any brands stand out (for good or not)?

Except for packing sorts of stuff, and buying some stuff (socks, bras), my preparation is coming along. I need to call my credit card company and let them know I'll be using the card elsewhere, and also the debit card folks.

There's GOT to be an ATM at the airport, right, so that I can get pounds?

I tend to focus on and fret about things that aren't worth the energy. Right now, I'm sort of fretting about being basically alone for a month in the big city and surrounds. Logically, I know I'll be fine, but I'm weirdly fretting about that and the money.

The Tour this year has been especially dangerous, it seems, but the car hitting a rider (and knocking him into another) was especially bad.

The winner of the yellow jersey (Thomas Voeckler) today was amazing, as was the stage winner (Luis-Leon Sanchez), and the other guy up with them (Sandy Casar). Voeckler has over a minute and a half on the next man in the general competition (Sanchez), which must mean he has four minutes plus over Contador? Does that push Contador pretty much out of the competition?

I'm off to have a bike ride, and hope to avoid contact with cars and asphalt. Rubber on the downside, blood on the inside. /nod

Saturday, July 09, 2011

Not to Worry

I was talking to a friend/colleague, C, the other day, and was happy to note that since I'll be away, I can't possibly be on any search committee next year. But C noted that what with the budget stuff, we might not learn that we're allowed to do a search until way late, so I might get drafted anyway.

We've had some folks leave unexpectedly. One was close to retirement, and decided it was time, another moved to be closer to family, and another moved to follow a partner's employment. Things are going to be a bit tight in several ways this coming year, but especially in terms of some fairly specific classes.

The state system here has been getting weaker and weaker at least since I've been here. I expect a few of my junior colleagues to be on the market this fall, hoping to leave the sinking ship (and rightly so).

Wednesday, July 06, 2011


One of the things I enjoy about biking (and running) is that it's mostly pretty quiet. There's the noise of the occasional car, and the whir of my tires on the road surface, but mostly, it's pretty quiet.

I was watching the stage of the Tour today, and it struck me how loud it must be: there are the occasional crowds (or more than occasional, depending on the area and such), but more than that, the motorcycles filming, the helicopter, the team and other cars. And the whir of a hundred tires, even, must be fairly loud.

I'm guessing that most of the riding that pro riders do must be fairly quiet (unless they're being motorpaced). My guess is that mostly they go out with another or a couple other pros and ride their 4-7 hours. (I'm sure they also do other stuff, but mostly, I think they ride a lot and a lot of it alone.)

So I wonder, when a rider starts riding races, if the noise feels overwhelming? Or when they move up from relatively smaller races to bigger races?

I guess it's just as well that I'm not a pro rider, eh? I'll just enjoy myself.

Monday, July 04, 2011

Lemmings and Birds

I've been away, and now I'm pretty stressed about getting ready to go. 20 days and counting. Eep.

While I was away, I played a bit of "Angry Birds." It's fun, and reminded me a lot of "Lemmings," which was one of the great games of all time. They both have little game sections in which you practice and learn to repeat some basic game skill(s) and then use them to solve problems based on screen geography and such. The only downside to messing up is that you repeat the level (well, and with Lemmings, you got that great splatting sound sometimes). And when you succeed, you move up to a new level with a bit more difficult problem or set of problems.

They both have somewhat cute graphics, a basic, easy to learn game play, and they both allow you to be creative with the game play to solve whatever problem(s) the level uses.

Except Lemmings was cuter.