S.J.A. Turney's Books & More

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I’m still here folks. I’m not going to do a massive update here, despite the fact that it’s been a quarter of a millennium since I last updated. There have been reasons for my absence; some good, some bad. Along with the bad stuff, like crippled shoulders and nasty anniversaries there have been nice things like visiting my granddad in London and our dogs’ first Christmas. I’ll be starting once more to keep this up to date hopefully. I’ll just leave you with 2 funnies to keep you going:

1. My granddad’s hearing aid. The full story of this goes back a long way. His hearing got gradually worse and worse for a long time until (and this story comes from my uncle) he was helping my uncle repair his chimney stack. My uncle was on the roof doing the work and my granddad (who is in his 80s but fit enough to run the grand national) was emptying bricks from the bucket when it was lowered. However, he kept standing directly beneath the descending bucket of bricks with his arms outstretched to receive it, while my uncle clung carefully to the rope while yelling down the building “DON’T STAND UNDERNEATH IT YOU SILLY OLD SOD!” Apparently he was loud enough for most of the street to come out and see what was going on but my granddad couldn’t hear him and continued to stand beneath a quarter ton of bricks. That was the night he was persuaded he needed a hearing aid. Now, I will state this: There are two things only about my granddad I can poke any fun at. I’m certainly not putting him down. If I’m anywhere near as physically and mentally fit as he is at that age it will be a miracle of science. However, he is fidgety – continually tapping his fingers, whistling and getting up to wander around, and he is quite hard of hearing. On the Mohs scale he’s diamond-hard of hearing. So in the end he bought these hearing aids. This was quite a few years ago now and these things cost well over a thousand each, so we’re talking high-quality gear. And they worked. His hearing improved tremendously. Now, however, the ear-fittings have shrunk slightly over time, and no longer produce an air-tight seal over his earholes. This allows some processed sound to leak back out, which then gets filtered back through the aid again. This produces the most tremendous feedback loop. The upshot of this is that his hearing aids constantly emit whistles, pops, shrieks and wailing noises. And they’re not quiet. Walking down the street he sounds like a flock of herons trying to play the bagpipes. And while we were staying with him, he, myself and Mrs M all went to Silchester Roman town and walked round the walls. I was on one side and they were on the other, and whenever I dropped behind taking photos I merely had to stop and listen for the wailing chorus and I knew where the others were without the need for sight.

2. My new phone. Yes, towards the end of last year I finally got myself a new devil’s communicator. It’s a Motorola Razr 2, which I am assured are fantastic. As usual, I use it to make phone calls and, if I’m feeling particularly adventurous, to text. Actually, that’s not entirely true. I also use it to play loud heavy music when I’m standing bored waiting for someone. Anyway… I mention this because I need help. I have lost the manual and can find nothing on Google about this. Yesterday it started to make a random pinging noise, just like a submarine’s sonar ping. About every 2-3 minutes I reckon it does it. And buggered if I can figure out why! No missed calls, no answerphone messages, no texts, Bluetooth is off (never even figured out how to switch that on), alarm is off, no reminders set. Just a sonar ping every few minutes. After the first hour it irked me so much I’ve had to set the phone on silent. This was no good as I then missed every call and text. So I set it to vibrate, but of course now it goes into a vibrato frenzy of buzzyness every couple of minutes. I’m also assured that this phone is near unbreakable, but if I cannot get rid of the sonar ping I am damn well going to test it’s fortitude by running over it and dropping it in a septic tank! Anyone who has any thoughts about this… PLEASE tell me…



Written by SJAT

January 7, 2011 at 4:05 pm

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