13 May 2021
08 May 2021
05 May 2021
17 April 2021
I've just watched the funeral of the Duke of Edinburgh, which I am glad to see that was tailored very much to his wishes and was done very well. I am sure that he will be very pleased with that.
It was also nice to see William and Harry talking together after the service. Perhaps that will lead to better things.
Rest in Peace, Your Royal Highness. You have been a great servant to his country and to the LORD.
15 April 2021
Had my first proper haircut since December today and next week I am taking a train into work for some stuff that I really can't deal with at home. I am particularly looking forward to eating in a restaurant again.
We're in a lot better place now with our vaccine rollout; while there are still concerns about the variants, none of them currently truly beats the vaccine. We need to be vigilant, but we can be confident - at present - that we are slowly coming out of this.
07 April 2021
I would support a limited use of vaccine passports while Covid-19 is still a significant thing in this country - which it currently. Definitely for foreign travel and big events, but not for pubs and shops. I also don't think it is really that discriminatory considering that we will all be getting vaccinated in the next few months.
I also see that the Oxford/AstraZeneca jab won't be recommended for under 30s going forward; the risk of the blood clots for that group is higher than being hospitalised for Covid-19. Which makes sense. Now we need more carrots to encourage people to get vaccinated - I would personally eliminate testing requirements for those with both doses.
Still hoping to go abroad this year, but Europe does need to hurry up with its jabbing...
06 April 2021
Show Me More Of This Earth Thing Called Kissing 3: The Drinking Contest (Review: Star Trek 2.22, "By Any Other Name")
02 April 2021
I must admit that coming up with angles on Easter is difficult; sermons and preaching are not my strong suit. The Lord has given me other talents and I am hopefully using them for his glory.
So, I will happily use someone else's work to showcase the meaning of Easter:
(This video will be removed after Easter, so watch it while you can)
This was a dramatic human story that touched the lives of not only those present, but countless billions afterwards. Jesus' death and resurrection has shaped our world, arguably for the better. I definitely feel that I am a better person because of my Christian faith and I hope my example shines through to others in the way I conduct my life.
Perhaps you want to give it a try? You won't lose anything and you may gain a great deal.
Happy Easter to you all.
26 March 2021
The UK's case rate appears to be levelling off, with an increase in cases among schoolchildren offsetting falls in the wider population as the vaccine rollout continues, albeit at a somewhat slower pace than previously.
There is a concern about variants that might "escape" the vaccine and so render us back to square one. At the moment, these concerns appear to be somewhat overblown. While some variants do seem to be less impacted by the vaccine, none of them seem to be completely successful in escaping it to the point they are causing hospital admissions among the vaccinated.
This doesn't mean we should throw caution to the wind and we need to remain vigilant, but frightening people unnecessarily is something that the media in particular should not be doing. I somehow doubt they'll stop though, sadly.
23 March 2021
08 March 2021
|The original form of Sargon (Photo by Сергей Орловский on Unsplash)|
21 February 2021
14 February 2021
Ultimately an end to restrictions should be governed by the science - and that's all the science. Not just epidemiology, but mental health, behavioural science and the economy. These necessary restrictions to protect the NHS and save lives should last as long as needed - and no longer.
30 January 2021
27 January 2021
Today we remember the victims of all genocides. This includes the possible one against the Uighurs by China, where they are at least trying to destroy their culture and may be engaging in mass sterilisation. The international community needs to take action here.
Let us all work together for a world free of hate and prejudice.
17 January 2021
In just under three days' time, Donald Trump will cease to be President of the United States, after a term of utter failure. He has been even worse than feared for the country, with his mishandling of the pandemic resulting in the worse mass death in the US in a single year since its creation.
And he topped it off with basically inciting an insurrection by refusing to accept that he had lost and claiming voter fraud with no actual evidence. His second impeachment is right and he should be investigated criminally in connection with this.
12 January 2021
There are signs of us turning the tide in this pandemic; the recent data on numbers of new cases is suggesting that they are starting to drop and Tier 4/lockdown has been having an effect.
The reason that is arguably not having as much of an effect is that we're facing increasing non-compliance with restrictions from a significant minority of society, who are happily bending or outright breaking the rules. Some of this is down to outright exhaustion with all the rules that for many don't seem to make a huge amount of sense, arbitrary enforced and broken by the so-called great and good. For others, it's belief in dangerous conspiracy theories and misinformation, while others are just selfish.
Ultimately, the vaccine rollout is the best way of getting out of this situation; with around 2.5 million having had their first dose as of time of writing. We may well get a million jabs done this week and every one will help, especially if it does indeed stop transmission. We need to go even faster; three million a week should be our goal.
But we still have a difficult few weeks ahead of us - the NHS remains under great strain with around 35,000 hospitalised with Covid-19 and around 750 deaths a day.
So, people need to heed the restrictions and avoid unnecessary social contact, wear a mask etc. It will keep the numbers of people who get this before they can be vaccinated down and so save many more lives.
03 January 2021
It's been ten months since the last televised episode of Doctor Who and a lot has happened since then. In fact, the controversial "The Timeless Children" aired on 1 March, a few weeks before things got really bad Covid-wise.
This episode was in fact filmed with Series 12 before lockdown, which means that the large crowd scenes filmed were done when we didn't have to worry about that sort of thing... However, aside from the editing, this also means that it reflects the quality and experience of that Series.
(Some spoilers ahead)
The Daleks have been heavily used throughout the show's history, arguably overused and it's getting somewhat difficult to find new stories to tell with them... so, credit to Chris Chibnall for something involving humans exploiting Dalek technology. In fact, it might have been even better without any actual Daleks. The actual Daleks were a bit on the dumb side, but frankly they generally are these days.
The story itself is a decent one, holding my attention for 70 minutes, although it isn't one that I'd likely return to again and again.
Jodie Whittaker does a great job as the Doctor, engaging in a subtle and nuanced performance with some nice quirks of humour, like using Harry Potter as a bedtime story to herself. She's got no plans to go after Series 13 - at present - and I am glad she is sticking around.
Yaz is underwritten here and with the departure of her two other companions, hopefully she will have more to do here. Mandeep Gill does her best with the limited material and acts as a great foil to Captain Jack.
Graham and Ryan get a good send-off, with the possibility of Big Finish audios being set up. Bradley Walsh was a brilliant addition to the TARDIS in particular and I wish Tosin Cole well in his future endeavours.
Captain Jack is always worth the price of admission and John Barrowman has the part down pat - it's very much him playing himself - with some great call backs to past adventures. In fact, the whole alien prison sequence was great and could have easily justified an episode in its own right.
Robertson... wasn't hugely keen on having him back in the first place and wouldn't be overly keen on having him back for a second time, but he was suitably slimy. Got to hang some good lampshades on things too.
The self-serving government minister... well in the light of some stuff that's been going on, that seems pretty plausible.
By no means a classic, but definitely an enjoyable festive episode. Shame we're only getting eight episodes this year because of the pandemic...
02 January 2021
New records are now being recorded frequently for detected coronavirus cases in the UK and while we are possibly not at the real levels of infection that we had in the first wave, we are definitely heading that way. Even Tier 4 and the schools currently being closed - they should not go back at all on Monday - does not seem to be keeping R below one. A significant minority have stopped complying with the rules and the more infectious strain is making things harder.
The NHS is now under real pressure and it may well end up overloaded at least on a regional level. The only way we can reduce the hospitalisations and deaths now is to vaccinate as fast as possible.
01 January 2021
Well, that was one horror show of a year. No firm plans for 2021, but when we can start freely travelling again, I may well be doing some bits on train types I haven't been on before.
Also, expect a Doctor Who review at some point this week. Might as well...
I just want this pandemic to end... I think everyone does.
Stay safe; don't become a victim before your vaccine.