Archive for September, 2007

by Pat
on Sep 25th, 2007

New Header Stylee

The old one was doing my nut in. I’ve also changed the root of squage.com. Look, I was bored this evening, ok?

It’s not a permanent look… there’s a rebrand happening at some point or other, now that I’ve got “CSS the Missing Manual” and “The Principles of Beautiful Web Design” in my possession…

Toodles,

Pat

P.S. Facebookers, you might want to look at where this post came from in order to it to make any sense :-)

by Pat
on Sep 25th, 2007

DJ Stress

On Saturday, I DJed a wedding reception.

As per my usual “hmm, I’ve not DJed in a while, I’d better check what to play and that I’ve got everything” pre-DJing tasks were performed throughout the day, which went pretty well. After a quick trip into Brentwood to grab the lights and PA that I’d hired, I headed off to the wedding reception venue, about 15 minutes from home.

All was going well – I’d got there with ample time to spare (I wanted to do that on the off-chance that I’d forgotten something (perish the thought…)) – so much so that, as the post-wedding proceedings were running late (that’s pretty standard in my experience), I was invited in to have some food with my mates (one of whom’s mum was the bride). This was really lovely of them – and had me in a nice happy mood ready to get going with the set.

Once dinner was finally over, it was getting rather late so I needed to get set up asap so that there’d actually be an evening’s partying to be had!

Alas on finally getting the equipment set up, I realised I’d left my laptop at home.

Not too much of an issue, you’d think. After all, I’d got the CD players, my CDs, the amp+speakers and lighting. Why need the laptop anyway, right? Well, imagine this scenario: you have your entire playlist worked out and in an Excel Spreadsheet. You’ve got a list of ALL your songs, with the CDs they’re on in a handy Excel Spreadsheet. Oh and you’ve managed to download a copy of the First Dance, which you didn’t own on CD, and by the way decided not to bother actually burning it onto a CDR.

Now imagine that this is on the laptop that’s at your home, rather than at the gig.

Yeah.

That was luckily the worst part of the evening, although it remained a bit stressy after that: once I’d rushed home and back, I had the laptop ready to plug in – but of course people saw I was back so expected tunes immediately, so I had to find and select songs inbetween plugging the laptop in, getting it all set up nicely to use – oh and rigging the lighting.

At least it was worth it. I’d managed to keep people… er… close to the dance floor all night. Bit of a tricky audience, but hey – that’s what happens sometimes. It did mean that I spent a fair amount of the evening stressing, thinking “Shit, my playlist I spent hours on isn’t working… and neither are these tried and tested classics… what the HELL do I play next?”, though.

Needless to say by the end of the night I was ker-nackered… but bloody glad I was DJing a wedding reception at a nearby town and not, say, 90 minutes drive away. Now THAT would’ve been interesting…

Pat

by Squage
on Sep 25th, 2007

A Quick Catch Up

Hey there!

A couple of weeks have gone by and Pat’s not been writing any blogs.

Is it because he’s really busy? No!
Is it because he’s had nothing to report? No!
Is it because he’s lazy? But of course! (Oi, it’s been my first few weeks back at work, I’ve been tired! – Pat) So are you saying you’re not lazy? (Well… – Pat) Thought not.

Anyway, I thought it was about time a blog was done, so allow me to fill you in on the highlights of Pat’s past few weeks:

  • Being at Work
    After the initial shock to the system, Pat seems to have got back into the swing of things – getting to know his job role properly and remembering all the company processes etc, etc.

    He’s also managed to slip back into the old habits, with such things as the regular “lunch in the canteen, at the same table as ever, then a walk around the building” routine seems to still be very much in fashion! Still, he’s been mixing things up by doing such outrageous things as “getting a jacket potato from the shop across the road” and, even more crazily, “”lunch in the canteen, at the same table as ever, then a walk around the building on a SLIGHTLY DIFFERENT ROUTE”. He’s living the dream.

    Amusingly, as he’s a “new starter”, he was also taken through health and safety stuff and the fire evacuation procedure with HR today. It appears this featured such classics as “if you need to get your monitor moved, you should get technical servic-oh, right, yes, that’s you. You’ll need to do heavy lifting trai-oh, you did, 3 years ago. Oh, right…”. Hooray for beaurocracy!

  • Going to the gym
    Amazingly, given it’s Pat we’re talking about, he’s been able to keep up the “go to the gym three times a week” thing for a full three weeks now. It’s not really started to show, yet, but that’s a) because it’s early on (Pat’s reason) and b) because Pat keeps eating crap and drinking beer (the real reason)… still, he’s not gaining weight, so that’s something!.

  • Getting early nights
    Mainly due to the “having to get used to actually doing work again” thing, Pat’s been surprisingly good at getting to bed in good time for a decent night’s sleep on most evenings… well, apart from a few that are listed below:

  • Going to see FAITHLESS!
    Something Pat had been wanting to do for YEARS was see Faithless. He’d actually given up on the idea, assuming that, well, they’ve pretty much had their day now and will probably never tour again.

    How wrong he was. And how damned happy he was too. He and Lucy (sister of Vanessa from Uni) had a rather amazing evening at Brixton Academy listening to the most fecking awesome concert ever, raising their hands in the air and dancing around like a fool for such a long period of time that they couldn’t actually walk following sitting on the tube for 20 minutes afterwards (ok, so that might’ve just been Pat)…

    In short: Faithless were f***ing amazing. Unfortunately, due to not wanting to destroy yet another camera, Pat decided not to bring his – but luckily he was able to capture the full scale of the amazing light show (lasers and all) with his BRILLIANT camera phone:

  • Going to Wemb-er-ley
    Despite not being the world’s biggest football fan, Pat fancied seeing the new Wembley -sorry, Wemb-er-ley – staduim in all its glory, so he went to watch England play Russia. Bizzarely, Pat appears to transform from a “Person who really couldn’t give two stuffs about football” to a “chanting, shouting, clapping, cheering football fan” when placed in a large, fooball fan-filled bowl with some grass in the middle of it. Luckily he wasn’t out of place, unlike a bloke a row and a few seats away, who spent most of the night not watching the match, shouting at the crowd for not standing up all the time – and almost falling over in a drunken stupor on multiple occasions. Hooray!

    Pat enjoyed the match (helped by the fact that it was actually a game played by England that didn’t end miserably) – and the sheer size of Wembley stadium.

    He also forgot his proper camera. As before, THERE IS NO WAY YOU CAN TELL:

  • Partying Like It’s 1999
    Yep, drinking snakebite, going to Warwick University Student’s Union and wondering if the phrase “Party like it’s 1999” will become really dated and sound stupid in a few years’ time. Pat’s been out “on the lash” a couple of times since being back at work, the highlights being:

    Paul’s wedding reception
    Set in the lovely surroundings of rural North Essex, Paul-from-work’s wedding reception was had inside a large white marquee, with an excellent live band, a bar with lots of beer and, well, a fair amount of drinking from various people:


    Obviously Pat remained sober throughout, and definitely didn’t end up chasing Elaine around the dance floor with a very frightening, drunk version of the walk from the “Amarilo” video. Definitely not.

    Elaine’s leaving do
    Pat assures me that Elaine leaving work was nothing to do with him chasing her around a dance floor (Not that that happened! – Pat) Oh, er, indeed. Elaine’s moving on to pastures new, and so fellow work mates celebrated / commiserated by having a lovely evening chatting, eating a delicious meal and, er, drinking. A lot. There are photos… but


  • DJing
    Only the once – a couple of days ago, in fact. Pat wants to have a special rant about some of the “fun” that this entailed, so I’ll leave that to him in a future post.

That should just about cover it. Oh, also, he and his friends from home managed to come first in the pop quiz at his local pub last night. Live the dream.

Toodles,

Pat

by Pat
on Sep 7th, 2007

Fruit Cake. FRUIT CAKE!

On Wednesday I signed up across the road from work. Yesterday I went for an hour long induction. Today I had my first session.

Yep. I’ve joined the gym.

No, before you scoff at me and point out that I’ve tried the gym regime a number of times in the past, with varying levels of failure, allow me to point out a few differences:

  • I’ve got a couple of gym-legend workmates giving me advice and encouragement through each session
  • I’m paying for it now, so there’s an obligation to get value for money
  • I’m going before work starts. All it requires is getting a reasonably early night and then the early wake up isn’t actually too bad – and even if it is, after 30 minutes in the gym I’m already feeling much, much more awake and ready for the day. Also, it means I can go out in the evening without having to worry about arriving late/skipping an after-work gym session to accommodate it. Oh and finally, it means I don’t spend the whole of my working day thinking of excuses why I shouldn’t go to the gym, as in previous “after work” gym attempts…

If I’ve (just about) convinced you that this will work this time then that’s good.

Let’s just hope it’s actually true. :-)

Toodles,

Pat a.k.a. “Fruit Cake”
(Apparently “Beef Cake” wasn’t appropriate for a veggie…)

by Pat
on Sep 5th, 2007

Back At Work

This may come as a surprise to those of you who I’ve not spoken to for a while. I’ve gone back to my former employer.

But wait! Before you say “Hey, what the hell?”, allow me to explain a few things.

Firstly, it’s a good place to work.

One of the things I found through talking to the myriad of people I met on my travels, plus also through speaking to long time friends about their experiences, was that there are plenty of things that my former-sorry, current employer provides and does that exceed many other companies. I’ll not go into details, but I heard plenty of stories from people about their employers that made me think “Jeez, how do they get away with treating their employees like that?”.

Essentially, I’ve been able to get some perspective on it all.

Secondly, I’m viewing this as a positive thing for me.

It’s going to provide me with the funds I need to have a good lifestyle outside work, spend my free time on things I enjoy doing (such as the cartoon bits and pieces, radio stuff etc) with no financial pressures on them, plus save up money for any future plans I might have.

It also means I can start going down the gym with James and Andreas from work. Having people to go with, keep you motivated and help you plan your goals etc is invaluable when it comes to things you don’t necessarily enjoy doing – e.g. running until you think you’re going to die, lifting weights until you think you’re going to die… you get the idea :-)

But, anyway, there we go. I’m back. To a clean desk:

Not a Squage in sight.  Yet.

So far it’s been an easy few days, mainly because I’m still waiting on most of my IDs to get sorted out so I can actually start doing anything… but hey, it’s good to see everyone again and I’m looking forward to getting my teeth stuck into the projects I’ve got lined up.

I’m also looking forward to the 28th of September. A.k.a. Payday

Toodles,

Pat