Tag: Champions League

Merge

I really shouldn’t use that as a title for a post, all I now have in my head is Chandler (from Friends) talking about how funny it would be to have a Merge road-sign above the bed (“MERRGE”).

Anyway, the week is rolling past at a fair old lick, and the countdown to our trip to Hungary has begun. Louise has nabbed the book on Budapest my Dad gave us, and each morning I’m regaled with a new set of facts about either Buda, Pest, Budapest, the Danube or the surrounding area. We are slowly gathering a list of places to visit but, at some point, we’ll need to stop as we are only there for 5 days (really 4 when you discount travelling).

I’m taking my good camera to Budapest and have a nice big 4GB card to fill (and 2GB spare as well), so expect a LOT of photos. I’ll be competing with our host though, and she has a big fancy DSLR so it’ll be interesting to see some comparison shots. I’m getting quite excited about our trip to be honest, really need to start thinking about what to pack.

As for the title of this post … well it seems like this little hobby of mine and my work are finally converging with “web 2.0”, blogging and community websites becoming the main focus of my attention as I’ve just started to plan the creation of a “community website” for my current employers. It’s nice when hobbies (passions?) and work collide and I’m having to force myself to STOP thinking about it 24/7… well almost 24/7, the usual diversions still kick in (Wii, Champions League, Ollie, kitchen DIY, por… errr… some other stuff).

It’s also sparked some ideas that I can use to get Scottish Blogs back up and running. Admittedly that’ll be a little way down the road as I’ve got a couple of website clients to deal with first, but exciting (busy) times ahead.

Smorgasbord

Only a couple of weeks after mentioning my dual monitor setup at work and what happens? They buy us all 19″ LCD screens, no more old flickering CRTs.. woo hoo…

AND I get a RAM upgrade for my laptop (2GB now).

AND tonight is the Champions League final.

In other news, it looks like Louise is off to Spain for a week. Her flight leaves at stupid o’clock in the morning middle of the night, and she’ll be joined by her sister and our youngest nephew. Which means that I get to fend for myself for the week. Needless to say the immediate thoughts of “yeah… party!!” are replaced by “but who will iron my clothes and cook my dinner?!”.

I bet you think I’m kidding…

Her Dad is really chuffed, and I know it will mean a lot to Louise to see him again as we didn’t really think we’d be able to get out there until later in the year. And hey, it also means cheap booze for me! A litre bottle of Southern Comfort for starters…

~

Ohh and a question for you all. Professionally I know a few people in my industry but would never claim to have a network of contacts. It’s not ever been something that’s bothered me overly as, in my profession at least, it doesn’t make a huge difference. In fact, if I’m honest, the entire “networking” thang has me a bit perplexed. Other than collecting contact details for large numbers of people you probably won’t contact until you need something from them (which seems a little… rude?) is there more to it?

Do you “network”? If so, any tips?

Getting a grip

Whisper it … I seem to be managing to keep quite a good work/play balance at the moment.

Day-job wise, we have an end of March deadline at work to hit and it’s gonna be tight (but do-able).

Side-job wise I’m throwing together a design for the POTW site, waiting to hear back from someone after handing over some final draft templates for another website (a local school)*, and I need to speak to someone else about an excellent, if somewhat large and scary, project that will take up a good couple of months of my time**. Not forgetting the responses to the recent Scottish Blogs/BritBlog announcement which Mark and I are currently chewing over and on which I’ll update you all on as soon as I can.

Louise is knee-deep in wedding invites, order of services, RSVP cards and other, more general, card-making activities. The IT side of which (see post below) is keeping me busy as well.

Despite all this I’ve managed to drag the elliptical trainer out of it’s hidey-hole the past two evenings (and will do the same tonight) and, more importantly, I’ve managed to stop getting distracted playing Football Manager 2006 (where my Liverpool team have just won the Premiership, FA Cup, League Cup and Champions League in 2009 – Porcellis, Bojinov, Kompany, Adu and Messi are my star turns) until the wee small hours of the morning.

All of which means my sleeping patterns are a little more stable and I’m much more able to focus better on tasks at hand.

Alas, it does not mean that the SHOUTY man isn’t still annoying me, nor does it mean that I’m noticeably cheerier first thing in the morning. In fact I am considering having a sign made so I can post it on the wall next to my desk:

** DOES NOT FUNCTION WITHOUT CAFFEINE **

But maybe that’s both a little over the top and an indication on the next area of ‘life stuff’ I should be getting a handle on. I’m averaging about 6 cups of coffee a day at the moment and that can’t be good for you.

* bang on queue PopTray tells me I have a response waiting.
** must get headset for use with Skype, save me sounding like I’m sitting in a porcelain-clad box

Football*

“At the end of the day, to be honest, I think I can safely say that I take each post as it comes. Although I’ve always got on eye on the next game post, it’s usually end to end stuff.”

Despite watching and (occasionally) playing football I rarely post about it mainly because I’m aware that most my readership doesn’t give a flying galactic toss monkey about it, and also because I’m what I consider a ‘neutral’ fan. This means my views lack the objectivenessless of the diehard, lifelong supporter, lack any real degree of passion or involvement and soon dissolve into an exercise in trying not to offend. The latter is only because I’m a nice guy though.

My Dad was/is a P.E. teacher so sport was always a topic of conversation and knowledge in our household with the possible exception of football, mainly because my Dad prefers other sports. I know a lot about the techniques and tactics behind a large variety of sports, having read a lot of the books my Dad was using/reading on various sporting topics, even if I don’t play them all.

Another reason I rarely post about football is that I don’t really have a team that I support. I truly a neutral fan. At the moment I’m loving Chelsea in the English Premiership, AC Milan and Real Madrid have long been continental favourites of mine, honed through the early years of Champions League and European Cups in the 80s, but I’ll watch pretty much any game if it’s good. Man Utd in the mid 90s were awesome to watch, and Arsenal of a couple of years ago were breath-taking with their pace and passing game.

I do play football, although a lot more of my time is spent on the PlayStation (Pro Evolution Soccer) than on the 5-a-side pitch these days, and I’m waiting for Christmas to get Football Manager 2006 for the PC. I’m currently second in the fantasy football league at work, and as I live in the West of Scotland and hugely aware of what is happening with Rangers and Celtic. As to which of THOSE teams I support, well that depends on who I’m talking to or, more accurately, who I’m trying to wind up. I don’t really support either but it IS fun pretending.

I think video techology can and should be used, I think stiffer fines should be imposed on players who cheat, and I would love to see more discipline on the pitch.

So, there you go. For the three of you that have read this, I hope that answers some questions.

* Soccer, for my American friends.

Limbering up

So congratulations to Porto for winning the Champions League. The new Chelsea manager seems like a bit of an odd bloke, so he’ll fit in at Stamford Bridge quite well.

Anyhoo, we were visiting a friend tonight who is recuperating after an operation on her back, there was some talk of the details but thankfully my squeam-o-meter kicked in and disengaged my brain before any of them made it too far. Ick.

Mind you, after four swift bottles of Corona I’m feeling a tad light-headed (christ, what a light-weight I’m becoming) so it’ll be off to bed for me soon.

But not before I mention that I’ll be buying Jordan’s “autobiography” at the weekend. No, not for me, it’s been requested as a birthday present for someone, and no I won’t be borrowing it as I’m not the slightest bit bothered about that “celebrity”. The birthday in question is my brother-in-laws girlfriend’s and will involve a 3pm start in a pub in the West End of Glasgow (somewhere in Ashton Lane). I’ve already written off Sunday.

Not so live

Live: Champions League draw.

OK, I was listening to Radio 5 (over the internet) to catch the Champions League draw. I also had open the above page (may move as the BBC are prone to do).

Thing is, I happened to refresh the page after hearing the first two teams drawn and was surprised to see the first 5 games already listed? Wow, psychic news reading or delayed radio?

Champion!

UEFA Champions League Final

Kicks off in Glasgow tonight, and the city is buzzing. George Square is packed with Spanish and German fans (check the two live webcams) and the atmosphere reminds me of a carnival. This is the side of a sporting event you don’t often get to witness, and I’m loving it. I might even venture back into the city to watch the game from the giant screen they will be erecting. Could be fun.

In reality I’ll be knackered after playing 5-a-side and will prefer to watch the game from the comfort of my own home, Glasgow in mid-May isn’t THAT warm you know…

Meme
I think I’ve started a meme! OK, not quite, but my snake story has prompted another revelation on prolific.org.

Coming up

Wednesday morning, drizzle falling. Busy day ahead, lots of documents to work on, 5-a-side later, and the Champions League final – from the glorious city of Glasgow – later. Then tomorrow, Attack of the Clones.

I’m beginning to get excited…