Highlights of 2016 so far

Despite a full workload and a backlog of both work, personal, volunteering and study emails to deal with, 2016 is off to a pretty good start so far. Here’s some highlights:

  • In Sainsburys at the weekend, I got carded. Less than a week before my thirty-fifth birthday and for the first time in well over a decade, somebody asked me to prove my age when I was trying to buy alcohol*. It’s even more-impressive when you consider that I was buying about £90 worth of shopping and a single small bottle of kirsch… oh, and I had a toddler with me. That would have been an incredible amount of effort for somebody who very-definitely looks like he’s in his thirties. Delighted.

 

  • This week, I’ve been mostly working on a project to make interactive digital content to support an exhibition on board games that we’re about to launch at my workplace. When my head of department first mentioned the upcoming exhibition, there was no way you could have held me back fast enough.

 

  • Annabel has recently decided that she deserves a beard like her father and her Uncle Dan. Her new game is encouraging people to draw them on her with washable pens. Aww.
Annabel sporting a full beard.
This one’s the third design of beard she’s had this week – this one’s “like daddy”.

I hope everybody else’s year is kicking off just as well.

* With one possible exception: the other year, an overenthusiastic bouncer insisted that I join a queue of one in turn to show him my ID before he let me into a nightclub at 9:30pm on a Wednesday night. Like I said, overenthusiastic.

My Very Excellent Liz Just Brought Us Sixteen Pizzas

I hadn’t really talked about it yet, because I’ve been too busy… I don’t know… blogging about Marmite and beds and computers or something… but I had the most fabulous time at a New Year’s party hosted by Liz and Simon at their house in Macclesfield. There was drinking, and board games, and truly awful Troma films, and then at midnight we all counted down from 7, or 12, or something, and spontaneously broke out into a chorus of Auld Lang Syne. See: there’s a video and everything –


(can’t see the video? click here to watch on YouTube)

It seems that my mnemonic (as used in the title of this post) is broken, unless we reinstate Pluto as a planet and rename the fourth and eighth planets in the solar system to Lars and Septune, respectively. Which I think are better names, anyway.

It was a fantastic opportunity to catch up with folks I don’t see enough of, to talk about what had gone right (and wrong) about the year gone by, and what we were looking forward to in the year to come. Liz suggested that perhaps this should become a regular thing, a little like “fake Christmas” has begun to, and that seems like a good idea (and I’m pretty sure I heard Bryn volunteer to host it next year…).

By the way: do you remember how last year Paul, Ruth, JTA and I invented Argh! It Burns Night? We’re doing it again this year, and because so many of you expressed an interest in joining us, we’d like you to come too. It’ll be on the evening of Saturday 4th February (yes, we know this is a little late for a Burns Night, but the second part of Ruth & JTA’s honeymoon is going to get in the way otherwise): drop me an email if you want to come along for a night of haggis, whisky, and fanfiction.