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November 2007

The Future that never was

Who knows what marvellous inventions are going to be made... space flight, moon colonies, direct brain - data downloads.
I found an interesting blog that looks at what people have said historically about the early 21st Century. Bit of a hoot.
Check out the blog here.

I especially liked the illustrations in this blog post. (French Prints (1910) Show the Future 2000)

In Memoriam: Peter Roberts

I heard this morning via email that my dear friend Peter Roberts died last night at 7pm.

I had only recently learned - late yesterday afternoon that he was sick. Very very sick with stage 3 Non-Hodgkins Lymphoma (NHL).

Who was Peter Roberts?

I met him in my first year of college. 1988 to be exact. I was doing my BA at the University of Witwatersrand in Johannesburg South Africa, and Peter was finishing off his engineering degree. We met through the WITS Ballroom Dancing Society. I joined that year. That was the year that the movie Dirty Dancing was still fresh in everyone's mind. Membership really increased due to that movie.

I met so many incredible people through WITS Ballroom Dancing Society. We would go to dances together, dance cheese and wines, and once a year we would have an annual ball.
I remember Peter - so bright, full of life and laughter. We had so much fun. In Dec 1989 a whole group of us hired a beach cottage aka the Hovel in Plettenberg Bay. There were 10 of us. That's where I met Jeanne (Cooksister). We had 2 weeks of fun and laughter.

Peter touched so many lives - he knew so many people. Somehow with him gone, it feels a lot less friendly. Peter was the one that always could be counted on. He is the one that you want on your side.

I am going to miss him.

W H Auden said it best in this poem..

Stop all the clocks, cut off the telephone,
Prevent the dog from barking with a juicy bone,
Silence the pianos and with muffled drum
Bring out the coffin, let the mourners come.

Let aeroplanes circle moaning overhead
Scribbling on the sky the message He Is Dead,
Put crepe bows round the white necks of the public doves,
Let the traffic policemen wear black cotton gloves.

He was my North, my South, my East and West,
My working week and my Sunday rest,
My noon, my midnight, my talk, my song;
I thought that love would last for ever: I was wrong.

The stars are not wanted now: put out every one;
Pack up the moon and dismantle the sun;
Pour away the ocean and sweep up the wood.
For nothing now can ever come to any good.

Rest in peace Peter Roberts.

My love and deepest sympathies to Mr and Mrs Roberts, Alison, Linda and Ken.

Update: Jeanne has posted a wonderful tribute to a wonderful friend.

A Novel Competition

I was doing my usual web surfing and came across this. The National Write a 50,000 word novel in a month competition.

For history of the competition go here.

For rules and regulations: go here

You have to write 50,000 words from November 1 until midnight on November 30th. The emphasis is quantity and not quality (although I am sure everyone is doing real quality work.)

So how about it?

Football season begins

Ahhh. I can feel a slight drop in the morning temperature. Leaves are starting to turn. Fall approaches. What does this mean (apart from the fact that I, the twice a year gardener, have to start getting busy again in the garden) - it means that Football Season has begun.

Last weekend the Bronco's had a nail biting finish with the Bill's - scoring to win in the last seconds. Sunday they take on the dreaded Raiders. In between we have had the Patriots (Kevin's team) fined heavily for taping an opponent's signals at practice. It's just like a soap opera.

On a more serious note - the injury of Bills Tight End, Kevin Everett really does bring it home - this exciting sport is also a dangerous sport. Kevin Everett broke his neck while tackling a Bronco. The prognosis to date looks promising... he may be able to walk again.

My Early in the Season Wish List:
The Bronco's rookie QB Jay Cutler is going to have an amazing season. (I know he played a little last year - but he is still a rookie, and a very talented rookie at that.)
My advice to the rest of the team is guard him well. Especially when you play the Steelers, aka the Bumble Bees (because of their black and yellow team colors which make them look like large bumble bees.) Etched in my memory is that terrible "take down" of the Bengal QB Carson Palmer by a Steeler. Examine the replay and I rest my case. It would be terrible for us if our QB got injured in that way. So guard him well.