Lists and lists and lists

My 50 Item Geek Wish List

  1. Have George put Star Wars back to the way it was. We all saw Han shoot first.
  2. Walk away while an explosion goes off in the background in slow motion
  3. Have a glass of rum with Captain Jack Sparrow
  4. Fight zombies with a yell of “Yeah-boy”
  5. Tell Captain Picard to “Make it so…”
  6. Have Jar Jar Binks meet with a very messy end so we can have no doubt he’s gone
  7. Drive the cool Batmobile from Batman Begins
  8. Understand Vogon poetry
  9. Get a real cone of silence
  10. Take the Tardis out for a spin
  11. Dinner with Terry Pratchett
  12. Find that the Serenity 2 movie is going to happen
  13. Walk into a casino wearing a tux and order a Martini “shaken, not stirred”
  14. Enjoy slow barbequed Ewok, St Louis style.
  15. Have a sonic screwdriver in the tool box
  16. Sit and listen to Isaac Asimov and Philip K Dick discuss robotics, replicants and the four laws.
  17. Re-read the entire Foundation series in order
  18. Look good in an Indiana Jones fedora and learn to crack a whip
  19. Complete all levels of Angry Birds with three-stars
  20. Visit the Computer History Museum in Silicon Valley
  21. Shoot an original (Buster Crabb) Flash Gordon blaster
  22. Burning man
  23. Have a “Law” named after me
  24. SXSW Interactive
  25. Have the Swedish chef cook dinner
  26. Car chase through the hills of San Francisco Bullit style
  27. Leia, gold bikini and…
  28. Listen to the history of the universe as told by R. Daneel Olivaw
  29. Work out what the hell was going on in Lost
  30. Don powered armour and into the drop-capsule
  31. Learn to wield a lightsaber from Yoda
  32. The ultimate dinner party: Josh Whedon, Hunter S. Thompson, Stephen Fry, Stan Lee and finally Gene Roddenberry
  33. Visit Westworld and take on Yul Brynner, after all the bugs have been worked out
  34. Beat the Kobayashi Maru
  35. Partner Logan 7 for a day
  36. Tour the Royal Aircraft Establishment, Farnborough with Nevil Shute
  37. Number-5 in the red dress
  38. Sit in a cool chair, wearing a collarless shirt and monocle, while stroking a white cat and utter the classic line “No Mr. Bond, I expect you to die”
  39. An afternoon on the Holodeck
  40. “Beam me up Scotty”
  41. Have a Monolith in the front garden
  42. Fly through the air firing two guns Hot Fuzz style
  43. Watch a live game of Rollerball (“Jonathan, Jonathan, Jonathan…”)
  44. Road trip with Simon Pegg and Nick Frost
  45. Have HAL ask me “What are you doing Dave”
  46. Hear an Avro Vulcan take off on full reheat one more
  47. Watch the Killer rabbit take on the Black knight
  48. Go hiking with Bill Bryson
  49. Get shot out of a launch tube from Galactica
  50. Fit a shock collar to George Lucas that goes off everytime he tries to re-edit one of his movies

50+ Things I love about England

  1. My niece and sister-in-law who gave me Marmite flavoured chocolate
  2. Prime Ministers Question Time
  3. Brutalist architecture
  4. Punting on the Thames in Oxford
  5. Blackpool Pleasure Beach
  6. British Museum
  7. Match Of The Day
  8. Match Of The Day 2
  9. The Net book agreement
  10. England 5, Germany 1
  11. The Ashes
  12. The Meaning of Liff
  13. Kebab vans
  14. Monty Python and the Holy Grail
  15. Hyde Park on a summer day
  16. Hammersmith Odeon (the home of metal)
  17. My niece
  18. Isle of Wight
  19. Radio 2 (my official tip ‘o the hat to old fartdom)
  20. Cadburys Cream Eggs
  21. Coventry City FC
  22. Prawn Cocktail crisps
  23. The Clangers
  24. Signs on the Motorway simply labelled “The North”
  25. Tate Modern
  26. Private eye
  27. Spiritual home of the “Hot Hatch”
  28. National Portrait Gallery
  29. Test Match Special
  30. Bottom with Rick Mayal and Ade Edmonson
  31. Brands Hatch, especially Paddock Hill Bend
  32. Radio 5 Live
  33. Homebuilt race cars and 750MC
  34. The North Downs Way
  35. Terracing at football grounds
  36. Have I Got News For You
  37. Indian restaurants
  38. Genesis (that’s Genesis with Peter Gabriel)
  39. Mid-week European Football
  40. Lords Cricket Ground
  41. Question of Sport
  42. Shawn of the Dead
  43. My uncles home made pickle onions
  44. Woking Town win the FA Trophy, twice
  45. Wye Valley
  46. Marmite
  47. Promotion and relegation
  48. Formula Ford Festival
  49. Curry sauce on chips
  50. Big Fat Ron
  51. Believing England will win the World Cup every four years
  52. Arctic Monkeys
  53. House of Commons being a real debating chamber
  54. Stirling Moss
  55. Kebab vans
  56. Top Gear and Jeremy
  57. Acceptable to have a quick pint at lunchtime on Fridays
  58. The Wombles
  59. Ordinance Survey 1:50K maps
  60. Walking through Admiralty Arch towards Buckingham Palace
  61. Great pub food
  62. Plowmans lunch
  63. Hitchhikers guide to the galaxy
  64. Land Rover
  65. Liverpool playing United
  66. Ian Botham
  67. Ian Holloway talking to the press after a bad loss or big win
  68. Creative swearing
  69. Devils Punchbowl
  70. Aldershot Town FC
  71. The growing crowds as you walk towards a football ground on Saturday afternoon
  72. The cobbled High Street in Guildford
  73. Walking across the Millennium bridge towards St Pauls
  74. First past the post politics
  75. Landlords turning a blind eye when I was 16
  76. Bloody Mary’s from Caviar House, Heathrow T4
  77. Branston Pickle
  78. Iron Maiden
  79. Beach huts and shingle beaches at seaside resorts
  80. Six Nations Rugby every spring
  81. Being a couple of hours flying time from a dozen capitals
  82. Cask beer, served (as god intended) at room temperature
  83. Jurassic coast
  84. Surrey playing a first class cricket in Guildford every summer
  85. Keswick in the Lake District

Top 50+ memories growing up

This is list runs from earliest memories through to the day I joined the Ministry of Defence as an Apprentice at 16. They are in no particular order or significance. There are some that make me wonder how I made it to adulthood (#2, #4, #10 and most notably #32)

  1. Family vacations to White Cliff on the Isle of Wight
  2. Sitting on my grandfathers lap (this was before seatbelts, some times I stood in the passenger floorwell) as he drove me around. I’d not let him go home until I’d been chauffeured around the block at least once
  3. Dad taking me to see Star Wars
  4. Coming down the stairs for my 15th Birthday and finding my first new bicycle in the kitchen. A five speed racing bike that a week or two later I cycled close to 50 miles on some major roads to Gatwick and back with a friend
  5. First Kean family trip abroad, to a resort town near Barcelona. My aunt joined us and according to dad drank a lot of sangria. I believe the photo of me floating in the hotel pool on a lilo while eating strawberries is still around somewhere
  6. Going to see the Spy Who Loved Me with Dad, my first Bond movie on the big screen. I’ve not missed once since.
  7. Going to my first Boy Scout camp, I believe it was Taverham in Norfolk with First Stoughton Scout Troop.
  8. Playing Subbutio with my friend Peter
  9. The death of Bobby Sands, dad was always interested in politics and this was my first WTF moment. Eye opening to realize someone would starve themselves for a cause
  10. My aunt Joan babysitting my brother and I, we could get away with almost anything
  11. Uncle Robert trying to teach me how to weld. Still can’t create a pretty weld like he can, but it’s generally functional
  12. Geology trip to Dartmoor when I was 15, on the second night the teacher supervising us said “I’m not sitting in here another night playing Monopoly, lets go to the pub, just remember what 1984 minus 18 is if anyone asks your age”
  13. Granddad showing me how to use a ratchet
  14. My grandmother dieing of cancer
  15. Hours spent cycling around Whitmore Common or Stoke park during the summer holidays with my friends
  16. Jayne Torville and Christopher Dean skating in Sarajevo
  17. My red pedal car
  18. Winning the Bishop Reindorp inter-house rugby cup
  19. Visiting Nancy and David Clark in Greenock and going to watch the Morton play with David and dad.
  20. My first personal stereo and the avalanche of batteries I went through with it
  21. Seeing Elaine S. bra when she lent over my desk at school
  22. Woking v’s Dagenham in the FA Trophy Semi-finals, my first exposure to football violence inside the ground
  23. Seeing my grandfather after his stroke
  24. Learning to play rugby at school, incredible confidence builder at the time
  25. Live Aid, the closest thing my generation had to Woodstock
  26. Getting my first Pringle sweater, closest thing to “label” clothes I had at 16
  27. Going to the library every other week with dad, he is still doing the same thing with my niece
  28. Status Quo playing the Princes Trust concert at the NEC being shown on the BBC
  29. The very cool park across form my grandparents house in Park Barn
  30. Getting stuck on the fort in the cool park across from my grandparents house and my grandmother having to help me down
  31. Michael Buerk reporting on the famine in Ethiopia on the BBC News, a lot of dinners went unfinished that night
  32. School trip to Switzerland when I was 15. A week with quite frankly poor supervision, surprisingly substantial amounts of beer, wine and some stuff that it was better my parents never found out about
  33. Aftermath of the Guildford Pub bombings, walking past the boarded up Horse and Groom when dad took me to the library
  34. My cassette of Queens Greatest Hits
  35. Sitting on oil spotted Scottish beaches in August wrapped in blankets, hiding behind a windbreak and Mum insisting we are having fun
  36. First time I came home drunk, it was a couple of pints of cider and I was convinced that I managed to slide my drunken state past mum
  37. Going to my first Scout camp as a leader, some place in Kent
  38. Kevin Keegan coming on as a late sub in the World Cup in Spain
  39. Going hedge hopping from garden to garden while camping out in a friends back garden
  40. Meeting my grandparents from Scotland off the coach in Victoria coach station
  41. Dad introducing me to science fiction, I Robot by Isaac Asimov was the first grown up Sci-fi book I read
  42. Rupert the Bear
  43. First time my brother got drunk, it was a New Years Eve part my parents were hosting, he was maybe 11 or 12 and went around finishing other peoples drinks. He lay on the landing smacking his head against the wall yelling “Look, and it does not hurt”
  44. The Clangers, I later had the creator of the clangers as a tutor in college, there is an interesting story there
  45. My grandmother taking me to the newsagents when I visited so I could get a quarter pound of sweets, despite the “he won’t eat his dinner” protest of my parents
  46. My grandfather after his stroke
  47. My first England game. It was against Northern Ireland, England won 4-1 in a packed Wembley
  48. Going to the pub on Sunday evenings during the summer
  49. At 10 or 11 going to the grown up section of Guildford library to check out books
  50. Playing a Paige in the Sandfield School play
  51. Dad having the patience to explain the offside rule to me
  52. Staying up late on a Saturday night to watch Match of the day while wearing my Liverpool scarf
  53. Saturdays spent in Guildford town center with David C
  54. Close Encounters of the Third Kind on the big screen with dad
  55. Going with mum to meet my grandmother at Euston station because mum did not feel happy navigating her way around the London Underground
  56. Exam preparation leave, no school after Easter until my exams in late May and early June. Better than summer holiday as my brother still had to get up and go to school in his uniform everyday and I did not. I’d already accepted into my apprenticeship, which meant the exams really meant very little. The final results show that perhaps my preparation was not as thorough as it could have been
  57. Proudly sitting on the sofa when Doctor Who came on the TV on a Saturday night. This meant Tom Baker was The Doctor and I was finally brave enough not to run screaming behind the sofa when I heard the theme tune
  58. My first “big” concert, ZZ Top at Hammersmith Odeon
  59. Going to a social club in Shalford with most of my family for New Years Eve parties
  60. Liverpool winning the European Cup in Rome on penalties
  61. Flying to Scotland and my teddy bear having a seat to itself between myself and mum
  62. Reading 2001 by Arthur C Clark and finally getting what was going on at the end
  63. Wombles
  64. Stopping at a motorway service station on the 12 hour drive to Scotland and being allowed a Coke out of the vending machine as a reward for not whining
  65. Going to stay in a caravan on the South coast with mum and it never once stopped raining all week
  66. First time I went to London sans parents, I believe it was a trip to either the Science or Natural History museum with my friend Robert
  67. The hand of god goal followed Maradonas master piece
  68. Dad telling me about his first big trip as a young man, describing how it felt to arrive in the huge marble train station in Milan. I don’t think I’ve ever told him how much of an effect that conversation had on my life.
  69. Watching the 1976 Summer Olympics with dad at my grandparents house in Scotland. I knew nothing about boycotts or politics, just that this was a big deal and the Olympic stadium was very, very cool.
  70. Heysel
  71. Bradford
  72. Hillsboro
  73. Dad and I signing my apprentice deeds in August 1985, my first step to independence and making my own way in the world