Okay people, time for some fun.
Ask me questions, I will answer them.
A few to start you off:
- Name three things that annoy you:
- The inability of people to grasp the simple fact that Wales is not part of England
- Right-wing poor people
- What do you like to drink?
- Beer is good, especially Dutch lagers (no really) but I’m also partial to a fine dry Chardonnay.
- What do you love most, and hate most, about the place where you live?
- Love? The cheapness and the access to almost anything I could possibly want within 45 minutes. Probably including weapons of mass destruction, if it came to that.
- Hate? I wouldn’t say ‘hate’ exactly, but the thing that pisses me off most isn’t a thing, it’s a person, and we all know to whom I’m referring.
Mark asks me to
- name three songs which elicit a good memory:
- Björk Human Behaviour takes me straight back to the Phoenix Festival 1995; the heat, the first flush of freedom; the people and the also people. I was sixteen, I had green hair, all was good.
- David Bowie Five Years was the first track on the first album I bought, and is always the first thing I play on any stereo equipment I buy, and usually the first thing I play upon setting up my stereo in a new house. The sublime bass of those introductory drumbeats segues perfectly into the chords… and takes me back to age 18, sat in a flat in Swansea in the height of summer, in my big Victorian bay window, sat on cushions and bean bags, watching the silly-hatted students wander past on their way to the beach on a balmy evening; the smell of the warm summer sea air.
- Motorhead The Ace of Spades was what I was listening to immediately before the first time I cracked open my little 125, the first time I rode my own motorbike; it was wet, cold, and it had been snowing; but on the way up the A38 I didn’t feel any cold at all, preoccupied as I was with the mechanics of managing a revvy and quite tricky little stroker. Having navigated my way out of the middle of Bristol, I found myself on the A38, heading up towards Cribbs Causeway, with Filton airfield on my left and Rolls Royce on my right, the intro echoed in my mind as I whacked open the throttle, hit the powerband and the bike took off… and my life was never to be the same again.
Frinky asks me
- should Wales be devolved?
- Depends what you mean be ‘devolved’. I would like it to remain part of the UK, but not be subject to Whitehall and Westminster’s government. They’re not really appropriate to Wales as a country.
David Crookes asks me
- what is the title and ISBN of the 1998 WHO study which you claim provides a figure of $40 billion would be required to provide everyone in the world with shelter and basic nutrition?
- I don’t know. I read it several years ago, and I can’t remember. Why don’t you look it up yourself? You might learn something. A quick google trawl tells me that the UN-sponsored Community Water Supply and Sanitation Conference was held May 5-8, 1998, so it might have been related to that.
- if a gun was held to my head and I was forced to choose, which member of Abba would I sleep with?
- Tricky. Neither of the guys, because frankly they are repellent, and not the blonde one because she has dead, dead eyes. What was the brunette called? Her, anyway. shudder.
Some anonymous coward asks me to hypothesize thusly:
- Supposing that malificient happenstance should require you to have a lobotomy, which (functional) part of your brain would you have removed?
- We don’t really know enough about how the brain actually works to answer that sort of question, but I guess I’d rather lose some dexterity than anything else. As long as I can still see, hear, think and speak I’m pretty much happy. So I guess part of my motor cortex.
Gia gets a second bite at the cherry:
- If a gun was held to your head and you were forced to choose, which one of the American Christian-Reich Military Housewives ™ would you sleep with?
- Does it make a difference? They’re all the same. Interchangeable little tiny cogs in the death machine. Either. Then I’d devote my life to making sure the person who put me in that position was reprogrammed.
- What or who has had the biggest influence on your life?
- The ARM processor architecture has been the basis of my career and has given me things beyond my wildest imaginings. I knew, aged eight when I saw my first ARM2 machine, that this was something special, and proselytized to my bored classmates about how the new RISC machines would take over the world. I was somehow right and wrong at the same time- they lost on the desktop to Intel’s atrocities and to the sublime PowerPC, but they are now by far the most numerous processor on Earth. Three billion customers can’t be wrong. You have several. Everyone does. I only regret that I never managed to get a job at ARM…
- As for people, it has to go to Alan M. Turing, and we all know what he did. If I had a time machine, I’d rescue him from the 1950s. Plunked down in modern-day Manchester, I have no doubt that he’d be stunned by how his works have changed the world. Not to mention that he could no doubt find a boyfriend…
I could answer this facetiously and say that the invention of the positive pressure respirator has, because without one I would have died as a newborn, but asides from that, I’d like to split this into two categories.
- If you were given the chance to make a law that would apply to every country in the world, what would it be and why?
- I’d impose a 99% tax rate to all personal property valuing more than one million US dollars. The money extracted by this would go to fixing the world.
Professor John Frink asks:
- If you had an independent income and no longer had to work, what would you do with your life?
- I’d explore the world, and when I ran out of that, I’d explore the universe.
- South of France or London?
- Yes please.
Now: pose your question!