09 Oct

PhD Final Approach, no longer a Virgin and Romeo and Juliet.

This is the final approach, the countdown to the PhD viva. Ann is away on holiday in Tenerife with Tree, and I didn’t go to Furnace XIII so as to be able to focus. I handed in my thesis on my birthday in May, and it seemed like a reasonable amount of time until my viva on Oct 12th. Boy! Was I wrong? It’s like reading someone else’s words. However, they seem quite good words, and although I have found some errors, that’s one of the advantages of perspective.

Timeless - Season 2

Credit: NBC

In other news, I watched all of season 2 of Timeless, which I really enjoyed as a progressive review of US history with lots of SF and drama thrown into a time travelling mix. For a show that’s been cancelled twice, and now will  be finished in a 2 hour movie finale, it deserved a bit more love from NBC, but hey.. that’s what US networks do.

The reason? We decided to drop all TV and phone rental from Virgin media. It really was getting excessively expensive to hire two Tivo V6 boxes, the full range of HD channels, and a phone line. We watch the shows on the traditional channels, we have quite a good proportion of our viewing coming from Netflix and Amazon Prime Video. I like Blu-Ray, and have got my UHD 4k setup working well now. As for a landline, well when we realised that neither of our sons had a landline we realised it was time to enter the 21st century. I may miss Syfy now and then, and oddly Watch since it hosted the Strain, but with the money saved I could just buy them on Amazon.

We went with twin Humax FVP-5000t  boxes, one 1TB and one 2TB, and so far things seem to going well as we empty the Tivo boxes and setup series link in the Humaxes. The boxes are certainly a little more ‘leisurely’ in their response time compared to the V6, but I am willing to embrace that since we save a shedload of money this way. We stayed with Virgin for broadband once they price matched Vodafone, and I’ll keep an eye on that, not least since I have to ring them every 6 months to reinstate the discount.

I also popped into the People’s Theatre to see their production of Romeo and Juliet in the style of Peaky Blinders. I really enjoyed it. The last time I saw R&J was in Brussels in a large arena as a ballet by the Moscow State Ballet, and this was the exact opposite. It really worked for me, especially the teenage ‘laddish’ nature of Romeo, Tybalt, Mercutio and others, the gang boss nature of Capulet and Montague, and the patriarchal violence of old man Capulet in particular. This blogger also agreed.

Ah well, displacement activity over, back to the thesis..