Unsung hero

If you are a genius in entertainment or the arts, there is a chance that your creations might be recognised and appreciated. If you are lucky, you may win fame and fortune.

If however your special talent lies in the field of engineering or computing, the fruits of your genius may simply be taken for granted by the millions of people who benefit from them.

One such person is Larry Tesler, who has just died. He is credited with creating cut, copy and paste, a little trio of functions used without thinking by millions of computer users every day.

The lights are on, but there’s nobody home

Or should I say, the lights are off. I drove to Liverpool today in torrential rain. Despite the poor visibility on the motorway there were several cars driving without lights. I wondered what the drivers were thinking? “It’s daytime, why waste my lights?” They might well be the same sort of person whose house in December is encrusted with illuminated Father Christmases.

In some ways, those numpties driving on sidelights deserve even more criticism. They have thought to themselves, “I know the visibility is poor, but I don’t want to overdo it. Why turn the light switch two clicks?”

It’s actually mandatory to use headlights when visibility is seriously reduced, but even if it weren’t surely it’s worth doing when you’re batting down the road at 70 mph in a heavy downpour?

Parasite (2019)

Oh dear. I find myself in Amy Winehouse territory again. Just as I can find no pleasure in her music, despite the late singer’s widespread popularity and critical acclaim, so I am struggling to find anything I liked about the Oscar-winning Parasite.

Perhaps it’s the absence of any sympathetic characters? In this movie we follow a family of anti-heroes, and there are plenty of examples where the audience can attach to the ‘bad guys.’ But here I found the hammy acting and unsubtle depiction of their unfortunate circumstances served only to make me recoil, not only from them but from the whole film.

In summary, Parasite is an absurd Upstairs Downstairs farce. It has received plaudits from all quarters, but I just couldn’t wait for it to finish.

This is not a hoax!

Another month, another Islamist-related terrorist incident in London. According to the BBC, the man shot dead by police ‘had what appeared to be an explosive device strapped to his body, police said, which was later discovered to be a hoax.’

What happened to ‘imitation?’ A hoax is a plan to deceive; it describes an action, not an object.