Friday, July 29, 2005

colour deficiency

Just been researching the different types of colour-deficient vision... very complicated. It's something that web developers ought to pay attention to, but it tends to be a bit of an afterthought, until you realise that 8% of men have some form of colour deficit in their vision.

This site has the best explanation of the different types of colour deficiency (commonly but incorrectly known as colour-blindness):, and it has lots of interesting stuff about colour as well. There's a shorter explanation at

On this site you can check your images to see how they look to a person with colour deficient vision: You can also "Daltonize" them (convert them to a colour-deficiency accessible version).

There are three different components to colour: Hue, Saturation, and Lightness. If you need to use colour to convey information, try not to use colours of the same saturation, and include other information like shape or hatching to distinguish between different objects. The BT website has colour charts showing the effects of the different types of colour-deficient vision.

Another option for web page designers is to offer different CSS stylesheets for different visual impairments. I have implemented this on my work homepage, and you can download all the necessary bits in the form of a ZIP file.

Oh, and I found a site in German:
- I especially liked the "verbotene Fragen" section.

Thursday, July 28, 2005

just been sent this

I've just been sent this via email, I think it sums it up really. Apparently "looking a bit foreign" is now a capital offence in this country.

It's a good thing I no longer have my old passport, as everyone said my identification photo made me look like Ulrike Meinhof. And I have another passport photo where I look a bit foreign...


Did Jean Charles de Menezes look like a terrorist?
Why did the police not identify themselves as police?
Wouldn't you run away if you were being chased by people with guns?
Why wasn't the public informed about the shoot-to-kill policy?

Blog entry by someone who met him

in the eye of the beholder

Just looks like a polished axe to me...
'Ancient phallus unearthed in cave'

The scratch marks round the top could be anything, if you ask me.

Wednesday, July 27, 2005

1.1 km

Today I swam 22 lengths of the pool, that's 1.1 km. Hardly paused between lengths either!

Prague photos

Now viewable at my Bath website (now with thumbnails, courtesy of

Tuesday, July 26, 2005

shipping forecast

Wonderful! You can now get that quintessentially English phenomenon, the shipping forecast, online at - just in case you didn't hear it on the radio.

You can also see a map of the areas and listen to the soothing sound of the announcer at - marvellous.


Apparently my power colour is gold, and I should learn Swedish. I was a charming Iranian philosopher in a past life (?!)

IQ test (which, incidentally was specific to American culture)

Logical Intelligence is Above Average
Verbal Intelligence is Genius
Mathematical Intelligence is Average
General Knowledge is Exceptional

My hidden talent is to persuade and influence others - well it's quite well hidden, I'd say!

According to the world's shortest personality test, I am dependable, popular, and observant; deep and thoughtful, prone to moodiness; in fact, my emotions tend to influence everything I do. I am unique, creative, and expressive. I don't mind waving my freak flag every once in a while. And luckily for me, most people find my weird ways charming! - yeah, that's pretty accurate.

I am 40% Weird: Normal enough to know that I'm weird...
But too damn weird to do anything about it!

My Myers-Briggs type is either ENTP or ENFP (but I usually come out as ENFP).

Monday, July 25, 2005


If you cannot, for some reason, refuse to register for an ID card, you can now pledge to resist the introduction of ID cards instead: - "I will actively support those people who, on behalf of all of us, refuse to register for an ID card, and I pledge to pay at least £20 into a fighting fund for them but only if 50000 other people will too."

If you want to know why people are resisting ID cards, visit:

space junk - luckily this meteorite fall occurred at midnight, otherwise it could have been fatal...

back from Prague

Prague was fabulous, I really enjoyed it. Lovely architecture, nice people, yummy food.

Oh, and I found out who the Přemyslid princes were, too - they were descended from Libuše and Přemysl. The dynasty originally had its castle at Vyšehrad but then they moved to the hill on which Prague Castle stands.

(Problems with Czech characters?)

Friday, July 22, 2005

last morning in Prague

Walked the same route that we walked on the first night, up Smetanovo nábřeží along the riverside to the Charles Bridge, then back through the Kampa. We could see all down the river to Vyšehrad and the twin spires of St Peter and Paul church. There was hardly anyone on the Charles Bridge, so we were able to linger and look at the view. Saw the shiny bits on the bas-relief at the foot of the Johannes Nepomuk statue, and someone rubbing it for luck. Looked up towards the castle and the Hanavský pavilon.

Sad to leave Prague, it is so beautiful, atmospheric, and full of historical, magical and spiritual significance. I will return someday.

Thursday, July 21, 2005


It's a long walk to Vyšehrad, the site of the original foundation of Prague by Libuše and Přemysl. On the way we passed the dancing building (Tančící dům) and the Emauzy kláster, and called in at the Botanical Gardens, a peaceful oasis where we had our elevenses. We eventually got to Vyšehrad and entered via the Cihelná brána (brick gate), then had a picnic lunch on the ramparts.

Then we walked round to the Vyšehradský hřbitov - the cemetery where Alfons Mucha, Smetana, and Dvořak are buried). It was a fabulous cemetery, particularly the arcading around the edge with the painted ceilings and mosaic tombs. The we went into the church of St Peter and Paul - very beautiful, with lots of paintings by Czech Art Nouveau artists - it was like being inside a William Morris cushion with extra bits by Alfons Mucha. Wild, and completely fabulous.

Outside, we saw the statues of legendary Czechs: Libuše and Přemysl, founders of the Přemyslid dynasty and Prague; Lumír and Píseň (the singer and his muse, Song); Záboj anbd Slavoj (two mythical Czech warriors); and Ctirad and Šárka (the doomed lovers, apparently the subject of an opera by Janáček). Then we walked alomg to the Rotunda of St Martin, which dates from the 11th century. After this we walked back round the ramparts and down Vratislavova to the river, and then back to the hotel.

After a long rest we went back to the Old Town Square to watch the clock striking again. Managed to find the entrance to the church of Our Lady before Týn this time, and walked around the back streets where we found a mad Baroque church that looked as if it had been designed by Josh Kirby (sadly didn't have a camera with us). On the way back to the square we saw the Betlémská kaple - another place associated with the Hussites. Reformist Praguers won permission to hold services in Czech instead of Latin, and built this chapel, which could hold 3000 worshippers. Jan Hus preached there from 1402 to 1412. It was later destroyed in the Counter-Reformation and rebult in the 18th century to the original designs and with some of the original stones and materials. Had dinner in the Franz Kafka café - excellent again.

Wednesday, July 20, 2005

Prague castle

Visited Prague Castle (Pražský hrad). Went into St Vitus' cathedral, saw the Alfons Mucha window (beautiful). Saw the tomb of St Johannes Nepomuk (seriously over-the top, with silver angels holding a red baldachin over the massive silver tomb) and Rudolf II and family. Then saw the Wenceslas Chapel, encrusted with gems, agate, and gilt bits, also with medieval wall paintings. Apparently it was here, clinging on to the door-handle ring, that he was murdered by his brother Boleslav.

Then we wandered about a bit till we found the Royal Apartments, and went in Vladislav's Hall of Homage, so eloquently described by Patrick Leigh Fermor in A Time of Gifts (p244) - we sat in in a windowseat and I read it out and we both looked at the ceiling. The ceiling ribs were elegant curlicues gone wild. It's nice to read a literary description of a place whilst looking at it - it deepens the experience. At the far end of the Royal Apartments is the room where the second Defenestration of Prague happened - the angry Protestant nobles threw the prevaricating councillors out of the window. Luckily they landed in a muck-heap, so their fall was not fatal. We also passed through the doorway described by Patrick Leigh Fermor as the entrance where the knights would sometimes ride in with trailing lances to joust in the hall.

Outside again, we saw the church of St George (Romanesque interior with a Baroque façade) and walked along the Zlatá uličká (Golden lane). It was very pretty. Kafka's sister rented no 22, and apparently he wrote some short stories there. It is now a shop with lots of Kafka books. Then we went to the tower where Dalibor was imprisoned in 1498 (he was a Czech noble who sheltered some rebellious peasants). He learnt to play the violin whilst imprisoned in the tower. The whole of Prague was enchanted by his playing, but they knew he had been executed when silence reigned once more. Smetana wrote an opera about him.

After lunch in the Lobovický Palác, we decided to go back to the Royal Gardens, but got massively lost and went down Kapucínská, where we saw a church dedicated to Sv Johannes Nepomuk. Then we found a lovely street called Nový Svet (it turned out later that both Tycho Brahe and Johannes Kepler lived at No 1). There was a pretty yellow pub and a little blue house with wonky walls that we were quite taken with. Then we slogged back up Cernínska and saw the front of the Cernínský Palác and the Capuchin monastery (Loreta). Then we saw that we were back at the end of Loretanska and had come full circle. Walked back to the castle and saw the statues of the fighting Titans over the gate to the first courtyard. Finally found our way back to the Royal Gardens, where we found a lovely building with a sort of pargetting effect, apparently called sgraffito. There were figures of Earth, Air, Fire, Water, and all the major virtues (Temperance, Faith, Hope, Charity, etc, all labelled in Latin). Then we walked down to the Belvedere and across the road, where we stumbled upon the wonderful Hanavský pavilon, which had great views over the river Vltava. Apparently the pavilion was created for an exhibition in 1891 and donated by the generous Hanavský afterwards to the city of Prague. Had a much-needed cup of tea and a sit-down.

Walked down the hill and back across the Charles Bridge, enjoying the craft stalls. Saw the statue of Sv Johannes Nepomuk with his crown of stars. Then walked back via the Kampa, admiring the water-mill in passing. We had dinner at U Karlův most restaurace - very nice, baked duck with caraway seeds and sauerkraut and three different kinds of dumpling. On the way back we saw a wonderful musician on Charles Bridge, playing the glass harmonium. He was quite a character, and very talented - he played Stairway to Heaven, a Bach piece, and then Schumann's Ave Maria. It was quite magical seeing and hearing him play on the Karlův most in the gathering dusk.

Tuesday, July 19, 2005

Václávske náměstí & Staroměstské náměstí

Walked to Wenceslas Square (Václávske náměstí). Saw the insurance company where Kafka worked (though we didn't realise at the time), the many lovely buldings, especially the Grand Hotel Europa, and the equestrian statue of Sv Václav ("Good King Wenceslas"). We walked to the National musum and saw the memorial to Jan Palach and Jan Zájic, woh set fire to themselves in 1969 in protest against communist repression. It was a sombre moment - what an awful way to die. Then we got the Lonely Planet Guide out and followed the walking tour. Good thing we did or we'd have missed the David Černy version of the Sv Václav statue, which is in the central atrium of the Lucerna Palac. Then we walked through the Franciscan garden and on to the kostel Panny Marie Sněžné (Church of Our Lady of the Snows) which was very tall. We went in, but there was a mass being celebrated, so we lurked at the back. It was very Baroque but the décor was very dark and heavy.

Then we walked up to the Old Town Square (Staroměstské náměstí). We got there just after eleven so we missed the striking of the town hall clock, so we wandered around for a bit admiring everything else, especially the statue of Jan Hus, Our Lady Before Týn and kostel sv Mikuláse. Had a beer in the café opposite the famous clock, and got a good view of its performance. Then we walked to the Jewish quarter, and stopped at the café Franz Kafka for lunch (highly recommended). Then we went to the Staronova Synagoga. It had a very different atmosphere from a church, and the focus of the ritual space was different. We saw the curtain screening off the Ark of the Covenant, where they keep the Torah scrolls; there were apertures in the walls for the women to see in from the women's gallery. Apparently the attic of this synagogue is where the remains of the Prague golem lie.

Walked home via the Charles Bridge and the Mala Strana gardens (the lower slopes of the hill of Petřin). There was lots of nettle-leaved bellflower there, and we had great views of the castle, and from the other side of the ridge, of the rest of Prague.

Seeing the statue of Jan Hus had a peculiar symmetry for me, as when I was in Konstanz in 1988, I saw the place where he was burnt. It was nice to see a place where he was celebrated.

In the evening we went to a Czech food restaurant, Jihočeská restaurace u Šumavy for dinner. Excellent food. The waiter didn't speak any English so we conversed in German instead. I got as far as saying Dobry večer (Good evening) in Czech and that was it, as I had forgotten to take the phrasebook - lucky we had a language in common.

Monday, July 18, 2005

first night in Prague

Arrived in Prague late in the evening. Walked down to the river and saw the National theatre (Národní divadlo) which was fabulous. The arcading at the front has little coffered ceilings with trompe l'oeil in them, seemingly all different - blue and gold and buff and pink. Then we walked up Smetanovo nábřeží along the riverside. There were lots of trees and a beautiful view of the castle, all lit up and with St Vitus' Cathedral in the middle. We could see Karlův most (Charles Bridge) ahead with lots of people on it, and the weir in the middle of the river. It all looked magical in the dark. There was a huge mad Gothic fountain with statues too. Then we walked to Karlův most and saw a lovely Baroque domed place and a fab church opposite the end of the bridge. We saw the statue of Charles IV, who caused the bridge to be built to replace the Judita Bridge which was swept away by floods. I loved the asymmetry of the towers at the end of the bridge. (Apparently the shorter one was originally part of the Judita bridge). On the old town end, there were statues of bishops leaning slightly inwards, having a chat or gazing benevolently down on passersby. There were loads of people on the bridge, including musicians and fire-eaters, and homeless people who had gone to sleep with cups held out for small change. The other bridges to the north were also lit up. On the Mala Strana side of the bridge there were two lovely houses, one pink and white, the other blue and white. We turned and walked back through Na Kampě and back through the Kampa. Then we walked back across the most Legií, looking at the Slovanský ostrov (island), past the National theatre and the Laterna magika (which looked, at night, as if it glowed from within) and noticed two lovely Art Nouveau buildings.

Saturday, July 16, 2005

pottering about

I'm unlikely to get anything useful done today, as the new Harry Potter book has arrived (pre-ordered it from Amazon). It's much more cheery than the previous one (thank goodness for that) and I think I have guessed the identity of the Half-Blood Prince, but I shall not reveal my thoughts on this. Really must tidy the house, but it's too hot. Went into town this morning as the cashpoint ate my card last night, but the bank was shut so couldn't withdraw any money. Most inconvenient thing to happen just before going on holiday.

EDIT (22.44): Finished Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince now. It was very good, though obviously I cannot reveal any plot. I was wrong about the identity of the Half-Blood Prince, in fact I didn't really guess any of the essential plot details apart from one, and even that I wasn't sure about. Though I had noticed something in Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets previously which turned out to be a significant detail in this one.

Friday, July 15, 2005

second-class citizens

The latest manifestation of the higher education obsession with research is the proposed job cuts at Brunel University.

Brunel University is threatening compulsory redundancies after it stated its desire to improve its research standing by making redundant up to 60 academic staff or 'non-research active' lecturers. (AUT)

It's all very well making universities "research led" but someone still has to teach the students - and I was always under the impression that the main purpose of higher education was to teach students. I think it's a terrible shame that teaching staff have been made second class citizens since British universities have become increasingly dominated by research. I appreciate that research is a good thing and informs teaching and everything, but teaching must not become a secondary activity of universities - though I fear this has already happened. Well done to the Brunel staff and local association for resisting the wrongful dismissal of these teaching staff.

There is also an international petition against the erosion of universities' independence.

Wednesday, July 13, 2005


Support staff in higher education abused by managers, colleagues and students
Non teaching staff in Higher Education are not only the lowest paid in the public sector, but also face abuse from managers, colleagues and students, with 20% suffering some form of violence, a UNISON survey has revealed.

This is very worrying. And another thing I've always wondered, why are the lowest-paid staff the most heavily supervised? If you're cleaning or catering staff, someone is on your back all the time to make sure that you are working every minute of the day. This is illogical, as if they spend a few minutes slacking, it's not going to cost their employer very much. But higher-paid staff are largely unsupervised, and can spend their time blogging, chatting on the phone, etc etc. All of which is euphemistically referred to as "thinking time". Yeah, right. And our slack time costs a lot more.

terribly English

Just finished reading Watching the English by Kate Fox. It's an excellent read and explains a lot - why the English moan about everything, how we use humour to defuse potential social conflict and deflect attempts at earnestness, and how we are never direct about anything and have to understate everything, even hiding things from ourselves, like our acute class consciousness, which we pretend doesn't exist by invoking the polite egalitarianism rule. At least we do have some redeeming features apparently - courtesy being one of them. But then there's our inability to assert ourselves, resulting in either passive or aggressive modes of interaction, and our obsession with privacy. It seems we are completely mad, in a moderate and understated way, of course. Mustn't make a fuss or be too conspicuous.

Consider for example the following exchange as an example of understatement:
French friend: "It's freezing in here."
Me: "Yes, it is rather chilly."

The question is, how did we turn into that strange species, the English? Was it our climate, geography, history, or a combination of these? Kate Fox is not sure but thinks a combination of all of them is the most likely.

My personal theory is that it was the Norman invasion that did it.

Tuesday, July 12, 2005


OK, I have now received the ICE email four times. I get the message. But at least this time it is actually a genuine campaign (though I wish people would send the URL of the campaign page to show it is genuine, and to give the proper details of what to do).

The problem with it is that whoever you put as your ICE contact number then comes up when they're calling you as ICE instead of their actual name, if the first letter of their name comes after "i" in the alphabet.

Anyway here are the links to the actual campaign and information pages:

(note that the email that is going round gets it wrong, as it doesn't specify that you should put ICE and then the name of the person, e.g. "ICE MUM" not "ICE in case of emergency" as it says in the email.)

Oh, and another thing we should all do to help out the emergency services - put your house number clearly on the front of your house. If an ambulance was trying to collect you from your house, vital minutes could be saved if they could find the house by being able to see the number from the road. Our front door faces away from the road, so we put our house number on the meter box on the front of the house using one of those self-adhesive numbers. I've just been reading Watching the English by Kate Fox (excellent) and her theory is that the reason people don't display their house number properly is for reasons of obsessive privacy. Not only is the Englishman's home his castle, but he doesn't want you to be able to find it in the vast and trackless forest... of suburbia.

Monday, July 11, 2005

Odin's gift

Recently I also had two poems published at Odin's Gift, an online collection of heathen poetry, which is well worth a visit.

Wandlebury - Roman Road (in the Odin category)

This was very nice because the site host contacted me out of the blue, I didn't have to do anything.

humans exist

I also rediscovered my short story, Humans Exist, which was published in the iSciFiStory newsletter in October 2002. I'd forgotten all about it.

the unquiet dead

My letter to British Archaeology has now appeared online in the archives - in the full text of the letter I made it clear that I am a Pagan, but they edited that out - a shame as I was trying to show that it is possible to combine being a Pagan with an interest in archaeology and still have sensible views on what to do with human remains.

I think it is unfair that only Christian remains get special treatment and have to reburied within a certain time-frame. On the other hand, I understand the scientific need to study bones. And as I said in my letter, we do not know what the preferred religious practice of the dead person would have been. And many societies practised a form of ancestor veneration where they frequently got the bones out of the burial mound and interacted with them. So the scientists studying the bones could be viewed in the same light as this. However, if they are going to rebury them, it would be better to do it with the "wrong" pagan ritual than none at all. Since pagans are (and generally were) inclusive about their deities, it wouldn't cause massive offence to the dead person if it wasn't quite the right flavour. I thought the temperature-controlled and fully accessible burial mound was an ingenious solution - I suspect it was one of Nick's ideas, it's got that lateral-thinking feel to it that is the hallmark of his notions.

Here is the letter:

Restall Orr does not speak for all Pagans. Many I know are scientists, or interested in science, especially archaeology. Contemporary Paganism owes a massive amount to historical and archaeological research. How do we know that the ancient dead were practising the same kind of Paganism that we are? I think their remains should be treated with respect, but I am sympathetic with Sebastian Payne (Science, July) who points out that we may yet learn more from stored bones. Neolithic remains were not buried, but exposed for excarnation then displayed in burial mounds for descendants to perform rituals with – hardly an opportunity to rest in peace. Perhaps the bones could be stored in a burial mound (a national repository), consecrated by Pagan priestesses and priests, but with temperature and humidity controls to ensure preservation and access for study.

The letter was in response to this article by Emma Restall-Orr.

Completely unrelated item: I also found a letter I wrote to the Telegraph on gypsies (22 March 2005)

eliminate bull

The ultimate version of Bullshit Bingo - with random bullshit generator

You can also download freeware to check text you have written to see if you have inadvertently used a bullshit term at

That said, I have just pasted the text of an email I received which I considered to have a very high bull-index into it, and it scored okay. I think this is because it looks for specific words rather than phrases.

very sad

The total deaths from Thursday are now up to 49, plus 700 injured and 62 of those still in hospital.

It should be obvious to anyone with even half a brain, however, that these terrorists do not represent the overwhelming majority of Muslims, who are peaceful, law-abiding and so on. It is very sad that there have already been retaliatory arson attacks on mosques, and that the Muslim Council of Britain have received hate-mail. Though they have also received a lot of emails from people expressing solidarity with them.

It's weird that when the IRA attacks were going on in the 1970s, people didn't talk about expelling all Irish people from mainland Britain - so why do people start talking about chucking out all the Muslims? Could it be because they look different?

There are aspects of Islam that I don't agree with, but I think we should make a distinction between the practices and what is actually written in the Koran. As the Interfaith Code puts it, we should "recognise that all of us at times fall short of the ideals of our own traditions and never compare our own ideals with other people's practices".

I for one want to live in a multicultural society, as it's a more interesting place to be - and it also happens to benefit me as a Pagan, as people are learning to recognise that religions other than Christianity deserve tolerance and respect.

The friend I texted on Thursday didn't get my text, but he contacted me via email to say he wasn't in London last week. Still waiting to hear from my friend who lives in London, though.

Friday, July 08, 2005


Just downloaded Google Earth, my boss told me about it, it is fantastic! You can search for a place, change elevation, zoom in and out, and get labels to show where you are. Incredible. And the application is free. Obviously the views of the USA are more detailed than of the rest of the world, but it's still amazing - and it's all streamed over broadband.

I have just "flown" over most of eastern Germany, the Czech Republic, Bristol, and Vancouver. The forests in eastern Germany are so big! They make ours look like tiny postage stamps. I have just made sure I was comparing them on the same scale, and I was, and ours look like little flecks of green compared to the great big splodges of forest in Germany. To think that Britain was once covered in forest. Sad.

Thursday, July 07, 2005

the interview

Interview with me at - in which I reveal sundry interesting facts about myself. I thought the questions were excellent, well done Sorita.

London situation

Terrible news about the bomb blasts in London. It has now been confirmed that 37 people have been killed, and there was a large number of casualties, some quite serious. Al-Qaeda have claimed responsibility.

A friend was on her way into London and has just caught a train straight back out again. I hope other friends in London are OK, I have texted another friend but not heard back yet, I assume he is in work though. Nick went to London yesterday, thank goodness he didn't go today.

going to Prague

I'm so excited, I've booked a holiday to Prague. I've never been there but it sounds wonderful. It is the ancient capital of Bohemia. I must bone up on some of the history, I like to know the background to places I visit. For example, who were the Premyslid princes? Why was the counter-reformation particularly strong in Prague, resulting in lots of new buildings? And I've just discovered there's lots of musical events while we're there, though it looks as if we'll miss the festival of early music. I must re-read the chapter on Prague in Patrick Leigh Fermor's A Time of Gifts, too.

Useful websites: - Prague Information Service

The origin of Prague goes back to the 7th century and the Slavic princess Libuše, a woman of great beauty and wisdom who possessed prophetic powers. Libuše and her husband, prince Přemysl, ruled peacefully over the Czech lands from the hill of Vyšehrad. A legend says that one day Libuše had a vision. She stood on a cliff overlooking the Vltava, pointed to a forested hill across the river, and proclaimed: "I see a great city whose glory will touch the stars." ("Vidím město veliké, jehož sláva hvězd se dotýkati bude."). She instructed her people to go and build a castle where a man was building the threshold (in Czech práh) of a house. "And because even the great noblemen must bow low before a threshold, you shall give it the name Praha". Her words were obeyed and some two hundred years later, the city of Prague became the seat of the Premyslid dynasty.

Friday, July 01, 2005


I just cycled from home to work along the Bristol to Bath Railway Path and then along the Avon Cycleway into Bath, and then walked up Widcombe Hill (very steep). About 8 miles, I think. The actual cycling was fine, it was walking up the hill that finished me off! It was very nice cycling, the birds were singing and there was a cool breeze and nice views across the countryside - the only problem was getting saddle-sore, as it's a long time since I've cycled any distance. Thank goodness there's a shower at work.

On Wednesday I swam 12 lengths of the 50m pool - so that's 600m. My arms were tired from that, and now I've made my legs tired cycling - but it'll be worth it if I can lose some more weight and get fitter. Yesterday went for a walk at lunchtime - a mere bagatelle compared with all the other exercise I've been doing, even if it did rain heavily.

Just checked the refusal to register for an ID card pledge site: 7213 people have signed up, 2787 more needed - pretty good considering the deadline to get to 10,000 signatures is 9th October 2005, and it was only started in June.

Oh, and my resolve not to eat squid after reading City of Pearl lasted about two seconds in the face of some serious temptation - namely being offered some as hors d'oeuvres last night. Along with delicious olives, salad, smoked salmon and other yummy things...