John Walker's Electronic House

Rum Doings Episode 81: A Certain Bathetic Brilliance

by on Aug.08, 2011, under Rum Doings, The Rest

In Rum Doings episode 81, we don’t discuss Amy Winehouse. But we do once more brave the Tesco Value White Rum. Then John tells a long boring story about getting screwed over by a letting agency. Fortunately we then move on to Nick’s criticising Rock, Paper, Shotgun. Who is the best writer there? It is John.

There’s a celebration of the Kindle, which inevitably brings us to the hideousness that is church bells, including some expert campanology. Then Nick has an Excellent Idea. Will Dexter attend John’s forthcoming wedding?

Then as everyone always likes best, we discuss a TV show at length. But it’s about magic! Penn & Teller’s Fool Us, for which it turns out Nick sat in the audience. Magic magic magic.

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21 Comments for this entry

  • Carl Howard

    Ooh I have been looking forward to hearing these mountain jokes!

  • John Walker

    As we said in the last episode, we’ll bring you the mountain joke results in a couple of weeks.

  • Jonathan

    Though I feel like I’ve been jerked around by many letting agents, the only time I’ve ever actually been angry about being lied to about something was when I was choosing my current flat and was told it was Council Tax band B, when in fact it turned out to be band F.

    I’m moving out of that flat in a few weeks to go live by the sea. They can keep their band F property with its dodgy wiring, peeling wallpaper, rotting windows, and excessively noisy neighbours.

  • Flameberge

    Perhaps Nick should join RPS? He could do something similar to the old Devil’s Advocate column in UK PCG. Or alternatively, in every post, Nick could have a little section at the end explaining why everything written above was wrong, and that games are rubbish. Followed by a grade for the author’s grammar.

  • Jonathan

    This was a most entertaining episode — I’ve had to pause so I could stop laughing and collect myself numerous times.

    I’m so glad to hear you complaining about church bells. I live near a cathedral, and groups from churches all over the city come to this cathedral for a weekly bell-ringing practice. While any guests we have say it’s a treat to be able to hear the bells it really does get old after the first few hours of a practice session.

  • Sam

    A question pertaining to episode 80: Which barefoot-style running shoes would Nick recommend? I’m already fairly fit as I play football twice a week, in case that has any bearing on the advice. Thanks.

  • Daniel Rivas

    I was similarly enamoured by the Kindle for about two months, after which I started buying paperback books again. There’s something…cramped about reading on the thing. I find the experience weirdly constrained. This sounds mad. Never mind. It’s brilliant for travelling with.

    “Hello” does have a certain bathetic brilliance. Well done John.

  • Daniel Rivas

    Oh, and Nick was thinking of Sam & Max.

  • mister k

    I actually found the opening to this one slightly annoying, with John’s faux anger (sort of) being slightly grating. Oh well, you soon settled down. You guys are definitely quick to dismiss non-digital equivalents of media! Bye bye DVDs, bye bye CDs, bye bye books! I’ve yet to actually try a kindle, although I do rather like the permanancy of books, and that I can just lend one to a friend very easily. My worry about the digitisation of culture is that we don’t transmit everything from format to format, and we just lose information. We are already losing our capacity to read formats from 20 years ago, which is more than a bit worrying really.

    For another unrecommendation, might I suggest to anyone living in Southampton to not touch the Home Agency with a ten foot pole. They are unproffesional bastards who have caused us no end of trouble until we were finally able to contact the landlord ourselves, who proved far more reasonable.

    I like Penn and Teller, some of their disagreeable opinions aside, because their style of magic has always been down to earth and fun. I’d take them over po-faced David Blaine any day.

  • devlocke

    The Kindle screen’s contrast just seems amazingly crap. I haven’t messed with e-readers outside of in-store demos, so I haven’t used them a lot, but even in well-lit stores, I just find the lack of contrast to be horrible. My books are black on white, or at least black on aged-and-yellowed-almost-white. Every e-reader I’ve looked at just seems to be black on grey.

    The two deal-breakers I had were the contrast and the fact that it’s not backlit so I can’t read in bed without having to have a light on, but a friend demonstrated the other day that you can just clamp a light on the thing and that works fine to kill the reading-in-the-dark problem. The contrast still just totally sucks, though.

    I do at least 80% of my reading on my netbook, because I can’t afford dead-tree books; I have no problem with reading on a screen. But e-readers all look horribly washed out to me. I’d rather read ‘real’ books by candle-light than an e-reader in very bright light. If they backlit it, it would probably fix that, but I don’t think eInk or whatever is compatible with being backlit and even if it were/is, it would kill the huge battery-life advantage they have over my only-ten-hours-without-power netbook.

    If they ever got ridiculously cheap, to the point I could buy an e-reader for the same price as a used paperback, I would probably buy one. But I don’t think I’d ever actually use it.

  • devlocke

    @Mister K:

    CDs and DVDs are digital…?

  • Mike

    @ Sam: Nick wears Terra Plana running shoes, I asked him! There’s a review here that he pointed to. I want them.

    That was a lovely episode. It began with John’s ‘sexy’ voice when he speaks far to closely to the microphone and has one of the best lines ever.

    “I’m a follower of the light, you’re a follower of the light… LETS LIGHT IT UP!”

  • Sam

    Thanks mike. I’ll check them out.

  • Sam

    Any comment on Judge Coxcombe’s recent tweets? I enjoy your hawkish brand of broad leftism (for want of a better phrase). The judge seems to be entering Daily Mail territory.

  • Nick Mailer

    Remember that The Judge often adjusts his rhetoric to annoy certain soppy individuals.

  • Sam

    Ok. He annoyed me, and I’m very butch.

  • nille

    Not “Sam”, but “Simon, The Scorcerer” is the name of the game.

  • James Campbell

    John and nick doing the bell noises is now my ringtone.

  • mrstrellis

    My sister used to ring handbells. I think she said handbell ringers look down on church bell ringers.

    I am surprised that Nick did not mention what we had to do to our landlady. Perhaps he might share that tale with the listeners in a future episode.

    PS: It has nothing to do with our nice patio although it is not unrelated to our nice flooring.

  • Colthor

    Own-brand Value/Smart Price-type products actually have deliberately unappealing packaging to put people off buying them – so they’ll buy the more expensive stuff instead.

    It’s not much consolation, John, but when you finally buy a house you may well start to look back on renting with nostalgia.

  • Man Raised By Puffins

    I’m a bit behind (stop making these podcasts so quickly you big sillies), so here’s my mountainy joke:

    What did the mountain say when he went to the beach?
    Looks like a good place to pick up a tarn.