Archive for the ‘LUE’ Category

Wet January

LUE []

My small patch on planet Earth has not much climate but plenty of weather. An island subject to ocean buffeting, chills from northern icy regions and occasional heat from the nearby continent. Often on the same day. I recall being greeted by snow in the morning, beaming sunshine in the afternoon and torrential rain that evening. It has been a bit turbulent of late, two storms in two days. Winds at 100km/h, gusts even worse. And rain.

This has me a little peeved, to be honest. I like to go for a short walk now and then, clear the cobwebs out of my head, put some air in my lungs, stop staring at screens for a while. This January I [click title to read more…]

A lesson in book judging


“Never judge a book by its cover.” – Mill on the Floss, George Eliot, 1860.

Many decades ago, when I was a young teen, a gentle knocking came on our front door and my mother got up to answer it. I peeked around the dining room door to see who it was. A dishevelled old man graced our doorstep, hair like that of a scarecrow, shoes with string for laces, an old jacket around his body and a cloth sack over his shoulder. He asked in almost a whisper “could I have a drop of water?”

Several beggars roamed the housing estates in those days and you’d have at least one come knocking in any given week. The smell of [click title to read more…]

Sitting with elephants

LUE, Technology

It has been a long time since I dropped an article onto the public side of the fence. Assuming this will one will also be public, that makes a total of two for this year! It’s fair to say that I’ve not been active in public for a while.

In similar vein, I posted only 30 times on Twitter this year, but the chaos that started around April made me pause my account at the end of October, and then in November I deleted the app and have removed its embedding from my site. Mid-November I joined a local Mastodon instance, popped a few shillings in its pot for the upkeep, and am rather liking what I’ve seen so far. [click title to read more…]

Food, glorious food


I have not been inside a restaurant for a million years. Well, not exactly true, but it feels like that. The risk of contagion in confined spaces is too great to allow people to dine indoors so, where feasible, businesses have been providing outdoor services. That’s OK when the sun is shining (and unusually for Ireland it has been sunny recently) but outdoor dining is not strong in the culture of a people whose primary topic of conversation is the imminent rain.

However, the problems with indoor dining when it comes to Covid are not due to the rain-resistant roof, but more to do with the proximity of other diners and the reduced flow of air to take contaminants out [click title to read more…]

2020 main course


It looks like we’re polishing off the main course served to us by 2020. I summarised the first 6 months of this calamity back in June, at which point the coronavirus infections had passed 7 million globally. It is now more than ten times that number! According to Johns Hopkins University 75 million people have been infected and over 1.5 million people have lost their lives. (2020-12-19) Countries across the world are either in, or going into lockdowns of varying severity.

Despite these shocking numbers, we have some good news. There are now several vaccines – two of which have been approved in the US, EU approval only a matter of days away, two others rolling out in Russia and [click title to read more…]