Category Archives: At Home

Dog Walking Styles

Having just been out for the past two hours bringing our (current) five dogs for a walk, I started to think about each dog’s distinct walking styles.

Calvin (11), is the “main man” and the “old man” of the bunch. To him, a walk is less of a need for exercise and more of his daily plod about the estate keeping his overwatching eye on things and checking in. He walks slow and methodically, often taking time to sniff a particular area. Often, if it’s late and quiet enough, he can be brought off-lead, and although he is very street-wise, he will still make a beeline toward any distractions such as open doors, other animals or even other people – and he can be deceptively fast when he has his eye on something.

Buster (9), is our neighbour’s dog and former foster dog. A glutton, gourmand and sloth inside the house; outside he acts like a pig searching truffles, sniffing and snorting everything on his way around. Despite his large stature, he is very mobile and always eager to go on to find whatever it is he’s looking for. Also has a habit of flailing around in a circle before he shits.

Misti (3) and Japser (2½) are “the smallies”, and act like a true young brother and sister pair – despite not actually being related. They always bark and jump at each other in the porch and leaving the house, almost as a competition to see who can get out first.
Misti walks as if she is on a hunt, constantly vigilant and aware of her surroundings, always up ahead scouting out – which makes sense given her pedigree background. However, she still acts like a princess when it comes to a muddy field or if it’s raining, avoiding it or even flat-out refusing to go out if the conditions are not to her liking.
Jasper is the dog of the bunch without a distinct style as of yet, as he mostly tends to act like whatever other dog he is brought out with. Can also be a bit lazy, as he is generally always eager to walk and gung-ho for the first 5-10 minutes, before dropping off and falling back for the remainder. He also gets very excitable if he spots another dog or if traffic is going past.

Lucy is our current foster dog. Because of her history, the concept of going out for a walk is completely alien to her, and consequently her lead etiquette is non-existent. She would go anywhere and everywhere if she wasn’t leashed, with no regards for roads, driveways or front gardens; and constantly acts surprised when she is yanked back by the lead for either running out to the full length of the lead, or by getting herself wrapped around a tree or pole. Also, as the only non-Cavalier, she’s the only dog who would go out several times a day for long distances, whereas everyone else generally goes out once a day for half an hour.

Damn, I’ve let this place go…

Sometimes I do forget that I have a blog sitting around that I can update with goings-on. Problem is usually that there goings-on aren’t really very interesting or worth blogging about.

Not much has really gone on over the past few weeks. I’m still making my YouTube videos, doing a lot of streaming over on NGame, and getting pissed and annoyed with a few people as always. The NASCAR, F1 and IndyCars have also sucked away a fair few hours.

More recently however, there has also been a couple of cases of conflict in areas.

Continue reading

Everything just went wrong today

I don’t know what the hell it was with today, but ever just seemed to go completely fucking wrong.

  • Shower cubicle leaking even more than before, now affecting downstairs.
  • An Post apparently not even bothering to deliver a massively huge parcel containing two pictures, it being so big it wouldn’t even fit in the car and so the boot had to be left hanging open with my sister squashed in behind my seat and the picture.
  • Finding the hammer that was supposed to be in the cutlery drawer in the toolbox with the other hammer. When sliding the toolbox out to get it, something fell in behind it and so when having to take everything out of the cupboard to lift the thing to slide the toolbox back in – which I think was the massive extension cord – something fell out and left a huge gash in my left foot.
  • The last Lucozade bottle of the pack, after my sister had been at them getting one for herself, practically exploding on me at my desk.
  • While attempting to remove the address from the parcel to prepare for recycling, after removing the bit that was taped on, to find a part-written address underneath on the main layer.
  • A very weird dream in which all of a sudden my relationship with the rest of the UKCS TF2 admin team takes a massive nose-dive after I join a game around half 9 in the evening, spawn as Pyro and literally 2 seconds later die to a Sniper headshot, before uttering “What the flying FUCK?” in the presence of Funky, Odgor and someone else, causing them all to suddenly turn on me. Even this one doesn’t make sense to me.
  • Going to bed before 11 after almost falling asleep while watching another one of my YouTube subscriptions, finding myself lying awake in bed at half 3, and unable to fall back asleep for the next hour, hence me getting up and finishing this off.

FML

Aachoo!

There’s not really much to say these days because I’m mostly sat at home bunged up in my room from massive bouts of hayfever. The past few years weren’t bad for me at all, I barely even had a sniffle, but this year is just horrible for it. After speaking with a few friends also suffering from it, it seems to be down to the massive amounts of rain from the past few months, and then the distinct lack of it recently now that the pollen counts are up high.

It’s also a case of the fact that very little seems to help alleviate the effects. Daily doses of Zirtek don’t seem to do much, but without it my nose’d be snivelling and running like a tap, and I’d be practically unable to open my eyes. The accompanying unrelated really annoying chesty cough isn’t helping procedures either.

Anyway, Friday and Saturday. That’s all I’m looking forward to. I just want to get to those two days already – and preferably not be suffering from this crap! If that means it pisses down like a monsoon, then so be it!

Cooklomerate… thing. Stuff.

Oh god, that was a fail of a topic title. And it really seems to be detracting from the whole point of this post, which was to write something about food, cooking and Look and Taste:|

I’m sure most of you out there consider my diet, based on my posts and tweets and the like, to be… shit. And it usually is. Surviving the college days meant a lot of sugar intake as it was either energy drinks and sweets, or non-stop deli stuff. And the drinks and sweets usually won for the fact I kinda got more than I would in actual food, and they were cheaper :P

And I will admit I do indulge myself in the odd takeaway every now and then (with the term "now and then" used VERY loosely) as a treat. I do enjoy the pizza, the Chinese, the Indian, the etc. and mainly my income does allow it. Possibly a little too much for my health.

I do want to be someone who eats properly and cooks well, but mainly due to a lack of decent cooking skills and the energy to get up and stand in front of the hob when I could be sitting down with a keyboard across my lap (which I’m actually doing right now…), it does limit my options a bit.

That’s not to say I haven’t actually cooked before. Mainly if I am going to do the cooking for myself, it’s throwing a few chicken fillets into a pan and after a bit putting in whatever else the meal calls for be they spices, sauces, veggies or whatever it could be. I do enjoy making and eating fajitas loaded with double the recommended amount of spice mix and half a jar of jalapenos on then, or making up some pasta to go with some chicken and a Dolmio stir-in sauce. Although I do think I could definitely expand my horizons and make things that I would consider a little bit fancy for my skills.

Hence why I really enjoy watching the videos on iFoods Look and Taste. Even if I don’t think I’d be able to make it, I still enjoy watching Niall and the others expertly make gorgeous dishes :P
Which is also why I love the Look and Taste show, and why I link it all the time. It’s got a nice spot on recent foodie things that make me wish I wish still in Dublin right now, and the new recipe every episode makes for some drooling. And Niall really does work well in front of the camera. Next head chef for Hell’s Kitchen methinks!

Plus, the competitions are fun. They can be zany, but they always result in another happy viewer, no matter what it is.

Kinda like me and my collection of new Le Creuset stuff :P

lecruseat

Cheers Niall! Dinner party soon? :D

Day… something, in the Fermoy summer house

I’d been meaning to write something like this for a while, except… well, I just haven’t bothered too much really! It’s the summer, and as summers go, I tend to do a lot more lying around relaxing than anything else to recuperate after a year’s worth of college stuff. This summer, though, is slightly different to the normal as I’m not at home with the family, rather down in Cork. Things are quite different to the normal, that’s for sure…

I’m not sure if you have picked it up from Twitter, or somewhere else, but I’m staying down in Will’s place in Fermoy, which he very kindly offered to let me stay in. :)

Lifestyle is definitely different. My sleep routine is royally ruined and there’s no light sleeper trying to sleep during my "golden hours" who constantly complains that I’m talking too loud while playing my video games at what are considered to be reasonable hours in the US Pacific timezone. So, generally I’m going to bed while it’s starting to get bright, and I’m waking up while it’s still bright out. Hopefully that will change soon (the brightness, not my sleep schedule).

I’m able to get a lot more constructive Internet-related work done, since I’m practically online all day, obviously excluding the times I sleep. It’s leading to a much greater release of Platinum LP videos, Halo 3 maps, unrelated websites, and other stuff. Although it does seem to be detracting from blogging stuff, which is kinda odd given that I have MORE time to be online, rather than less.

However, shopping is now made slightly harder. The distance from here to the local supermarket feels about twice, if not three times as far as it was from the house to Eurospar back in Dunboyne. Which is probably why I try and stock up on what I can when I do get to the shop so I hopefully don’t have to go again for another fortnight. Or I revert to my Santry ways and order takeaway every other night, which is now very viable since the local chipper/pizzeria combo place does online ordering via JustEat.ie. My bank balance is going to be annoyed with me soon.

I really do want to work over the summer to try and save up a bit so that I have a lump sum to be able to pay for some decent accommodation near college next year. Problem is, it seems like there is very little work available around here, I think it was snapped up by everyone just finishing secondary school before I managed to get down here. If I was any good at web development, then I’d try to use that as a source of income, but I think I have quite a bit of more talented and skilled competition out there.

I really should get out and start making day trips to Cork city centre soon. It’s just a case of going into the middle of town, standing at the bus stop, and hope that a bus for Cork comes by within the next two hours. I managed to get a look at the frequency of buses that service Fermoy, and it makes the 70 seem like the most frequent service possible.

I’m planning to make a trip back up to Dublin for a while soon, sometime within the next couple of weeks. There’s a few things going on that I want to go to, and besides, I’m sure the extended family (and possibly some of you guys) will be wanting me around anyway.

Now back to my Big Brother and BT Experiment-esque living!

An open letter of thanks

This is a bit of a public thank-you to whoever it is on Shanliss Drive, in Santry, Dublin 9, whose unsecured wireless connection I’ve been hijacking for the past month since my landlady’s new UPC router was being a bitch and wouldn’t even fathom connecting to my laptop.

In case there are more than one of you around (which I highly doubt), I’ll need to be a bit specific. The one I’m thanking is the owner of the Netopia router Model no. 2247-02, serial number 130375633424, MAC address 00:1e:5a:fe:4a:10, running software version 7.8.0r2, whose warranty expired on the 26th of August last year, on eircom’s shit 2Mb package. Your inability to have some common sense when it comes to wireless network allowed to to enjoy performing my usual Internet tasks with less stress than the old connection my landlady gave to me.

However, I do need to point out a serious flaw in your setup. One time while randomly browsing, your broadband went down and I was sent to the home page of your router. Usually, people shouldn’t be able to get here without knowing the direct IP of the machine, and even more so they should not be able to gain access without some sort of password. Obviously, you never set one, hence the ease at which I got in.

Now from here I was considering whether to just count my blessings that I was lucky to have the connection at all, or attempt to punish you for your mistake. I decided to be lenient and merely put an admin password on your router and forced a login before you could access the router’s menu. Obviously that didn’t affect you as the uptime of the connection was as solid as before. However, several times while trying to stream web shows, or buffer YouTube videos, the connection speed degraded rather badly, and I was tempted to start adding advanced options to your router, such as password protecting the connection, or restricting connections based on MAC addresses. However, luckily they sorted themselves out before long.

But tonight, while trying to watch the latest showing of Live Time with Jon and Jory, the connection speed was unbearably slow, and the connection to the live web show was severely impacted, so much so that I missed half the show through buffering. At that point I was angry and restricted access to your router to only the MAC address of my computer. But obviously that caused some issues with you, as what was obviously your machine, connecting from the .14 IP of the subnet, was disallowed access and you began to restart the router several times over, impacting my own ability to use the Internet.

As such I relented and removed the MAC restriction on your router, and now everything seems fine again as it appears you have put that problem down to your router or broadband merely acting up. However, impacting my surfing has made me slightly annoyed and unless I find something fun on the Internet (like Total Wipeout on YouTube!) to calm me down, I will completely sabotage your router before I no longer have any more need for your connection.

I may add a connection WPA key, I may enable multiple SSIDs all unprotected, I may restrict access to all computers that don’t have a MAC address I specify, or I may just out and out balls up your router. I think that for the best relations between yourself and myself, that you just disconnect for the next 24 hours or so, and position the router so that it is as close as possible to my machine, so I can get the most out of it until I no longer have any need for it.

Maybe this will teach you to be smart with your broadband and your router in future.

Many thanks,

TheChrisD

In short

This is not one of those situations where I want to go into excruciating detail. I prefer to leave that for times when I can talk in person. Besides it’s also probably not the ideal thing to go on about on the Internet. As such, this intro is as off-topic as possible.

You may have noticed on my Twitter – in a roundabout sort of way that things regarding home have changed dramatically. I’m not going to go into the reasoning behind it, but I am now by law not allowed in the place I formerly referred to as where I lived. The bitch of a mother has applied for a barring order, and yet even though it hadn’t yet gone through the courts when I was first told of it on Wednesday, apparently in the interim I’m still not allowed back.

As such, the time has come rather prematurely for me to be living for myself. Unlike the year before this when I was merely on-campus and went back every other weekend, this time it’s just me. For now I’m just trying to get by until I can find somewhere a bit more fixed to stay. However, there was some bad timing, and so I’m having to wait until Monday before I can seek any help from the college.

Thankfully, Darragh and Niamh were able to put me up last night (it may only have been a couch, but it had the comfiest duvet ever!). Since I didn’t want to try and be a burden on anybody else, I went looking for rooms in hostels around Dublin. When that didn’t work out so well (high prices for a few, but generally unavailable for the three nights), I wandered around and managed to find a good deal in the Travelodge back near Blanch, just slightly off the Auburn Avenue/N3 roundabout. €127 for three nights (tonight, Sat and Sun) isn’t too bad.

I’m not sure how things are going to end up on Monday, hopefully something can be sorted out. I can’t exactly go out and rent a place for myself, as from what I can tell rental prices start from at least €150/wk even for a single room in shared house before any bills or anything, and I only earn just over 200, which doesn’t leave very much for paying for anything! Here’s hoping that DCU on-campus have some sort of emergency accommodation scheme available as at this point in the semester it seems like the most logical solution.

Like I said, I don’t want to become a burden on anybody, so I’m not going to go asking around each and every night for somewhere to crash. While I apparently have been classed as a leech or a parasite by the afore-mentioned person at home, I really don’t want to be taking anything from anyone who has worked hard to get the way they are right now.

I just hope that this gets sorted soon… :(