Friday, 17 April 2015


I've been married for nearly 15 years.

Every time we have an argument I want to blame marriage.  But I'm wrong.  Marriage is, in reality, only a legal binding of two people.  It puts no onus on anyone to work together, see the other persons point of view.  All of that is in your perception of what you want your relationship to be like.

Marriages don't fail, relationships do.

My wife was recently on holiday for two weeks.  As the main carer for my kids I knew that the holiday wasn't going to be a holiday.  Washing still needs to be done, meals cooked, the kids fed and changed, etc.  However in addition to this the need to achieve something with the holiday would also be there for my significant other.  So in addition to the usual chores there was cutting trees down, chopping up wood, gardening as well as having our eldest full time and looking after him whilst the manicures, coffee's and lunches occurred.

Needless to say by the end of the two weeks I was more tired than before the break.  In addition, probably through poor posture and lack of core strength, my back was a mess.  So I unilaterally decided that since I was in pain the ironing and house work could wait.  I'd still need to do necessary stuff like cooking and getting the kids in shape but I wasn't going to put any stress on my back.  So I played games and learnt about Linux.  For 2.5 days each, totalling 4 days straight.  The wife always said that I should play more games.  So I did.

Needless to say this was noticed.  If I'm going to be a house husband apparently I need to be on top of the house work at all times.  Everything has to be prim and proper and the way that it should be.

But why should it be ?  I don't get paid for it.  I have a longer working day than the wife with little or no thanks.  As far as I'm concerned if we're all fed and watered and have drawers of clean clothes anything else is icing on the cake.

My wife complains that I don't like her coming in when I've done 90% of a job and she does the last 10%.  Of course I mind.  Completing a job is satisfying.  Having that taken away from you makes a grotty job even worse.  I'll do the washing, hang it over the radiators and then the wife will put it on the washing pile for me to iron.  That isn't how I do it.  It goes from the radiator to one of 3 places (tumble dryer for towels, ironing pile for things that need ironing, or straight away for woollen items)

She'll complain that I re-arrange the items when she puts them in the dishwasher but pays no attention to how I do it to maximise its utility.  No back and forth and compromise on how we should do it and the pro's and con's of the respective methods.  No, she just doesn't do it.

Don't get me wrong.  I'm a pretty grotty husband at times.  I'm impatient, irritable, depressive but I'm also loving, caring and helpful.  If I'm nasty I'll apologise.  To be honest even if I believe I'm in the wrong I'll still apologise because it just doesn't matter.

I don't know how relationships work.  I don't know how friends work.  I don't like politics, diplomacy or brown nosing.

How can I learn to make a relationship work if I can't even be a part of society without isolating myself ?

I don't like peoples consumerism, their hypocrisy.  I may like their personality, their sense of humour, their integrity.  I respect their abilities but.  To be frank.  I'd rather live on my own in a log cabin in Canada.

Where is that lottery win when you need it ?


PS.  Yes, I know we're lucky we can be in the position where both of us don't have to work.  But it's a luck of the draw.  Do you feel guilty that even though some of the people in the uk are on minimum wage and can't afford their own home, they're STILL better off than most of the inhabitants of the 3rd world ?   You can feel guilty forever and sometimes you can be thankful for what you have.

PPS.  Here's a couple of interesting links for the record ;-)

Wednesday, 11 March 2015

To LOCA or not to LOCA

I recently broke the screen on my Samsung Galaxy S3.  I paid £60 to have it repaired by a guy at the local market.

To clarify at this point it was only the glass that was broken, not the digitiser.  This means, to the layman, that although the glass was broken I could still see the display clearly and the touch screen still worked.  If you have any form of screen corruption and/or loss of touch capability then you need an entirely new digitiser which will set you back £70- £120 for just the screen, or the screen and fitting respectively.

So, as I was saying, the bloke at the market fixed my screen over night and within 24 hours I had the repaired phone back.  There were a couple of scratches underneath the glass where I assume they had scratched the digitiser during removal but to be fair it's a technical process with a hot air gun.  If you get it too hot you melt the digitiser and too cold and the screen is hard to remove.

The only issue was that within 2 weeks it was broken again.  Why ?  Of course it was partly due to my clumsy handling but also, in my opinion, the flexing of the repaired screen.  There are two ways of repairing a screen

Non LOCA repair

This is exactly the same as a LOCA repair but without the glue.

  • Easier
  • Cheaper
  • Less messy


  • The glue adds strength and reduces flex.  By making the glass and digitiser in to a single unit it increases the strength of both the glass and the digitiser
  • You can have dust between the glass and the digitiser which you can't remove
  • The contrast in daylight is lower due to the extra space between the glass and the digitizer.

LOCA repair

  • Much stronger and less likely to fail than a non-LOCA repair
  • Practically an OEM finish
  • Much better contrast and ability to see in sunlight
  • This is messy and very diffficult
  • It takes MUCH longer and includes more preparation
  • It requires the purchase of more tools (UV bulb/light), LOCA glue
  • You can capture air bubbles in the glue which cannot be removed
  • You can break the phone or touch on the screen

Ebay and Amazon sourcing

I bought these items:

It took me two attempts but I ended up with a perfect looking screen, with only a pinprick of a bubble..... unfortunately the touch screen stopped working.  The screen itself works perfectly but the touch will not respond at all..

In conclusion I would recommend that any broken screen is repaired professionally either by using a warranty repair, applecare or by taking it to a well known highstreet vendor.  Alternatively I would buy the entire unit, digitizer and screen and replace the whole unit.

Jeremy Clarkson

Jeremy Clarkson appears to have been suspended following a 'fracas' over catering.

I have no sympathy for him.  If he is innocent then he will be cleared, if not then he'll probably get a warning or dismissal.  All of this was inevitable.  He doesn't care.  He has a loyal army of doting 'anti politically correct' followers stoking the fires of his immense ego.

Regardless of what he has or hasn't done he will move to another channel and get paid more in a month than most people get in a year.

Are we now saying that being politically incorrect means that you can be above the law, employment or otherwise ? If he broke the rules he should get the punishment for it.

Jimmy Saville felt he was above the rules, look where that got him. Someone needs to ground egotists and readjust their megalomania.
That won't happen of course.  Society has made him a martyr and he has more than enough money that he will be safe well in to his (already) dotage.
Hopefully we'll get a rebooted top gear with new presenters, some of the old silliness and an embracing of two wheels as well as four.
Who can tell though ?, society has never made much sense to me. 

16/03/2014:  Update
I find it interesting and enlightening that it was Clarkson himself that reported the incident that got him suspended.  Highly coincidental when you consider the contract renewal and the fact that if he leaves before September it could be expensive.

Follow that up with the fact that he could be nearing retirement age, doesn't seem to like the BBC much, he could walk over to Sky or ITV and make better money then it could be that he's wrecking the Top Gear trademark/IP before jumping ship.  Considering it is reported he sold it for £8,000,000.00 + it would be a sweet revenge to make the Intellectual Property worthless.

It's nice to see the mindless masses put together a petition to keep him when he is probably the one that would come out of it financially better off.

Monday, 23 February 2015

Farcry 4 Ethics & plot

I don't often blog.  This time I'm doing it as I feel strongly about the direction of video games in general.

For me, First Person Shooters (FPS), only really have a few specific morality motivators 'the greater good', survival or no plot at all (Team fortress I believe).

FarCry 3 played both survival and greater good cards well and even a dose of megalomania.  The plot was pretty darn good.  You were concerned with your survival, the survival of your friends, the quashing of evil and psychopathic enemies and personal conflict of attraction and delusion of citra and her psychotic personality.

All in all, you felt like killing the psychos was morally justified to rescue your friends and okay, there may be times when you went against your first instinct in order to see what happened, but you felt bad about it (unless you were a psycho that is :-P).

Which brings me to Farcry 4.  It's a great game, enjoyable, engrossing and full of cool stuff.  Except.  Except in this I just feel like a mercenary.  Sent off to do others bidding like a servant.  Two options, each as bad as the other where you know, fundamentally, that neither of the golden path leaders are any different to Pagan Min.  Except they are.  You LIKE Pagan Min.  He doesn't threaten your life, send you off killing people who oppose you.  He doesn't pretend to be your friend, he genuinely does like you.  He could have killed you in the first few minutes of the game but he doesn't.  If you wait 10 minutes or so he lets you put your mothers ashes where she requested.  Okay, so he kills a guy, nothing that Amita or Sabal wouldn't have done and nothing that you don't proceed to then do through the entire game.

Farcry 4 doesn't give you a greater good situation.  You're not playing for survival either but there is allegedly a plot.  It feels like Modern Warefare 2 'no Russian' where you're tasked with killing innocents.  Ultimately unsatisfying.

My point is this.  If you're going to have a plot, which is fine with me, then make the morality simple.  Good and bad is the right way to go.  A video game where the entire intention is to shoot people is clearly in a dodgy morality area already.  To then have a line of different endings which are ultimately unsatisfying is not the way to maintain a fanbase.

For me, in truth, I regret killing Pagan Min.  I felt as if I was forced in to a corner and I wouldn't complete the game unless I did.  I had no issue with his lieutenants who were trying to kill me, or torturing innocents but Pagan..... I liked him too much. 

Further Reading: