Monday, 26 November 2007

Spirit guides

Well, today was the second week of our course to be the best and the brightest. This week's learning involves creativity and innovation. I've always said i'm probably more creative than I am academic, but being such does not mean that I haven't got a brain. Though some days it may feel that way, and i'll hold my hand up and say that I'm no Einstein, but then Einstein was no me. I bet he's thanking his lucky stars as we speak (well he would if he was alive) LOL.

As has been the norm since we began our management course, every Monday (without fail) we've had examinations. I'm one of those people that just the simple word 'test' sends me into a blind panic. Doubly so, when we've not even learned the material we're being tested on! Thankfully, this time I was not alone. Taking a peek at my co-workers papers to see what they put down... What? I mean it's not like you've never done that. Come one admit it, you've peeked! Or at least thought about it. I was relieved to see that everyone (well as far as I could see) didn't fair any better than me! For some reason that made me feel lots better. Our tests involved the Left and the right brain, which parts are creative and which are the logical ones. Then this was followed by a brief Mensa test. I kid you not! Yep, and it's still early in the morning. Strangely enough I actually managed to answer a few questions! Go Me.

Then we moved on to the fun part of drawing pictures, playing with toys, (Spirograph's, ping-pong, cuddly toys, glittery wands) apparently it stimulates all your synapses. As i'm drawing my stick men to represent an answer, it dawns on me that I'm actually enjoying myself. I knew it was too good to last!

The trainer decided after lunch that she'd like to us to 'think outside the box'. As such she wanted us to practice some meditation techniques to solve any problems that we had through using whomever we were paired up with to act as a 'spirit guide'. Now things probably wouldn't have been so bad if I hadn't been paired up with my partner in crime. So far we've behaved reasonably professional, with only brief moments of him and his boss 'flashing us' after we had to make a commercial, and my 'giggling' has only occurred a couple of times. So, I think so far i've behaved very well. When we were paired up, he was very hesitant, it was a bit 'new age' and he's a 'man's man' if that makes sense? He doesn't like anything involving 'fluffiness' But, I was determined that he was going to give it a go. Given this we trundles off with another couple to somewhere quiet, and he had me go first. I scooted down in the chair, and closed my eyes relaxing my body as much as possible. The exercise was for us to ask ourselves a question, and then go into our secret garden, then have a wander around before jumping over the imaginary stone wall using our super powers. Can you see now why we might have found this a bit embarrassing? I mean this is him and it's me guiding each other through our imaginary garden's!

As I took some deep breaths and exhaled slowly, I could hear him snickering to the side of me. I swatted him in an effort to keep my own giggles at bay. Then he uttered those fateful words. "Now it's time to release your burden!" At that point, all I could think of was the episode, 'Tao of Rodney' and Shep saying to Weir that Rodney needed to release his burden! Oh dear things were not going well, and I burst into fits of giggles. So we tried again after i'd composed myself. Finally I was in my secret garden, and i'd lasted a whole 2 minutes without laughing! Go me! Then he had to walk me through my garden, and it was at that point, I lost it again. When I open my eyes my partner in crime is shaking his head and I we end up giving up. His turn! Let's see how he likes it. Closing his eyes, I tell him to breathe easy and relax his body, he's to clear his mind and think of bright blue skies! And then I lost it! Again!! Then he lost it, and no matter how many times we tried this, both of us ended up hitting each other with our books. Things were not going well. So we ended up giving it up as a bad job, and hoped the teacher wasn't going to ask us what we saw in our garden's. If this is day one, i'm dying to know what tomorrow brings!

Monday, 19 November 2007

Management - the Cheeky way

As I mentioned a few days ago. I have been promoted to a senior manager. Whether this was fluke or someone took pity on me, i'll never know. Personally I think they promoted the wrong person and today's first day pretty much confirmed that for me. A few of us (including my partner in crime) have been sent on a training course to become the best and the brightest leaders. This course is to last a whole 4 weeks and will apparently include a variety of topics and activities in an effort to get all the managers to utilise their skills and bond with each other ready for the mammoth task ahead.

I'll be honest with you, I was slightly nervous going in, and had no idea what to really expect from my colleagues or the course! Our group consists of several 'executives' who appeared quiet and deadpan. No humour, no smiles, no laughter. These type of courses freak me out. Me being serious for a whole 4 weeks? This was not going to be easy. I had to remain professional at all times as i'm now in a position of power. BUT it's 4 weeks!! I'm never going to last. So our first task involved a pop quiz regarding employment legislation, learning techniques and grievance procedures. A whole 91 questions on the topic. To say I was unprepared would be an understatement. The trainer advised us that this was purely a benchmark exercise. Just as well really, lol, you can't exactly get any worse than being absolutely crap. ;o)

After our test we were asked to draw a pictogram about who we are, what influenced us, what our job entails and what our motto is. And just to make it that much more interesting our big boss decides to tell us that we are 'the cream of the crop'! She might want to take that back at the end of my presentation. :P I told the group that I was *cough* on occasions a bit cheeky and geeky and how much I loved Stargate. My partner in crime kept rolling his eyes as if to say, "Oh no, not again." LOL What was my motto that I live by? Carpe Diem (Seize the day - stolen from Dead Poets Society) One of the best films i've seen! Alas, the only way I knew how to draw that was to draw a picture of a sun, and a hand grabbing it. Let's just say i'll never win any awards for my creativity. ;o)

So our third activity of the day was to design, present and act out a two minute commercial on how to promote out business. This is the point where I lost the plot and had a fit of the giggles for ten minutes solid. In my defence it really wasn't my fault. Anyone seen the show with Les Dawson? It's the one where he dresses up as a woman and keeps hoisting his boobs up whilst pulling funny faces. Well, my partner in crime decided that we (the other girl) and I should be the women and we should hoist our boobs up like Les Dawson Don't ask. LOL Well since I have the attributes, I felt like I could play my part pretty well. I've noticed recently that most topics seem to be about boobs... specifically mine. Then the boys decided that while us women were pretending to play these parts, they would jump up behind us, tap us on the shoulder and then 'flash us'! Yep, you heard me. Complete with mac and dodgy persona, (though obviously.. and thankfully not nekkid.) They planned to sneak up on us and tell us both 'Not to fear' as they'd have the solutions to our problem. I was fine up until the point where 'flashing' would take place (complete with actions, I might add). Well, I lost it at that point and continued my giggling hysterics for about 10 minutes while the others looked on as if this was part of the norm. Their seriousness just had me laughing even more.

So we'd rehearsed through my laughing, up until the point where I was told to 'go and sort myself out'. I can't help it. Once I start laughing, that's usually me gone for a while. People were coming out to see what the raucous was, and why it was having this effect on me; they couldn't wait to see what we'd come up with. Oh the pressure of a performance!! Needless to say, like the consummate professional I am, I held it together for nearly the duration, but what set me off again (oh yes I know I'm childish) Was when one of the lads 'flashed us' he ripped his mac so much that his buttons flung off. After that there really was no going back. :o)

So, with my fate in the group firmly sealed, I think TPTB are thinking of ways of retracting my promotion. I'm not sure if i'm exactly the kind of person they were hoping for. Even if I do get kicked off the course for being a bad influence, at least i'll have had fun along the way!

Sunday, 18 November 2007


Well, it looks as if someone's spidysense is working well for them! In this weeks episode of Stargate Atlantis, The Seer. The team got a taste of their possible future... or demise, as this week the team encountered a 'Seer' whose accurate predication's makes him a valuable asset to the Atlantis team. The problem is, he's dying, and there are a few things he needs to tell the team before he dies. That, coupled with the fact that the CG Wraith is back *squee* made this an excellent 42 minutes of pure entertainment.

What fascinates me about predicting futures is probably the same as other people's thoughts. Are our lives mapped out already or are we able to chose our own paths? These are the sort of questions, that I like shows to delve into. I asked a question on the whump thread about this episode as I don't know why I thoroughly enjoyed it, I simply did. S4 has been very much like a tapestry and each episode the threads become interwoven; building up slowly until the viewers will finally get to see the full picture.

One thing i've always commented on is the fact that at times SGA doesn't always follow up on things. But, I have to say, this ep had continuity in abundance. The CG wraith initially appeared in S3's Common ground, and the tentative alliance he built up with Sheppard was an integral part of the story. The events surrounding that episode resulted in both man making a pact of sorts, in that 'All bets are off', if or when they ever met up again. So for me this was one ep I was looking forward to. I'll admit I had reservations, particularly as I didn't want the ep to go down an 'Irresponsible' route. ;) And you know what? This episode blew me away. We had angst, mistrust and an uneasy tentative alliance, with both sides. I adored the fact that even though Sheppard and the wraith shared that common ground before, that here and now the circumstances were very different and the two men reverted back to the same uneasiness that we felt initially in Common Ground. I loved it. But then I am a sucker for angst, mistrust and tension type of episodes. ;o)

There was so much information and build ups in this ep, that I had to watch it several times to get the full impact. Yes, that's my excuse and i'm sticking to it. :P I'll be honest, I was worried about Carter coming over from SG1 (even though i've always liked the character). I felt that now that SG1 had finished that TPTB felt some kind of loyalty to the actors, which is understandable. I didn't however want SGA to always be reliant on it's sister show. I wanted it to stand on it's own two feet and do well on its own merits, and there are times when I still think it's overshadowed by its sister show, even now that SG1 is off the air. People will always make comparisons. However after the episodes that have aired thus far, i'm hoping that people will realise that it's a different type of show. The content is darker, the story lines (personally) feel stronger, more so recently. And I hope it goes from strength to strength. With that said with the viewing figures dipping I do wonder if Season 5 is the last. I hope not, but my spideysense continuously tingles on this issue. And i've not been wrong so far. :( Anyway I digress!


So, with the team being shown possible futures, Carter had several tough decisions to make based on the visions shown. One in particular related to the potential destruction of Atlantis. Given the arrival of the CG Wraith and his pose, it was understandable that they perceived the two to be connected in some way. So the dilemma was, after seeing the vision and arrival of two hive ships, do they play safe or do they go with their instincts? I won't spoil it for you. Suffice to say, I think this episode left more unanswered questions that will hopefully be revealed in the coming weeks!! Darn it!

So what did I love? I'll try and be succinct, this could be a first. :P

  • CG Wraith and his humour. *g*
  • Shep and the CG Wraith (that really doesn't get old). :o)
  • Angst, tension and mistrust throughout
  • Shep and Carter scenes showing a lot of respect for each other.
  • Rodney and Shep scene *sniff*
  • Continuity with Teyla and the Athosians
  • Tentative alliance with the Wraith
  • Great story and SFX
  • Lots of unanswered questions. (What? I like it when things aren't nicely squared away). :P
Alas we're not going to find out the answers for a few more weeks. Dagnabit! But, hopefully we'll get to know in time how things tie up. In the meantime it means that we get to speculate to our hearts content. :o)

Thursday, 15 November 2007

Death by PowerPoint

Have you ever sat through an intensely boring lecture, where the lights are off and the manager decides to give the team a thorough briefing of changes being made in the office? 50 slides of management speak along with stats, and how the team should be performing under those immense changes and what's expected of you? The lights are off and you're forced to spend a whole day listening to your manager speak for a minimum of 7 hours as you try desperately to stay awake. Failing that, you pray that if your eyes do close, then they won't hear you snoring.

Well, the time has come when I will have to be that manager and talk for not just 7 hours. Oh no my blogging friends, our Powers that be are insisting that I bore my new team for a whole 14 hours! Won't that be fun?

Yours truly has finally become a senior manager after passing my promotion board! Woohoo! And with great power comes with great responsibilities... or so i'm told. Now i'm all for bonding with my new team, but let's just say my ways might be a little bit more different to theirs. After being told what is expected of me and my team, it has to be said that i'm always up for new challenges and have no doubt that it'll be a bumpy ride as we all get to know each other along the way. But team bonding through death by PowerPoint? Not exactly a great way to get to know my team. it has to be said that they wouldn't be the only ones struggling to stay awake! "How about bowling, or going to the pub then?" I suggested? Their short and sweet reply? "NO!"

Okay, maybe too much too soon? I mean they're not used to my way of working yet, so better take it slow and steady then. "How about bonding via paintball? That way, instead of killing them with death by PowerPoint, I can get them with my lazer gun, or paint balls?" Given the look I received, I don't think they thought too highly of my suggestions. In all fairness though, I can't take the credit for the pub suggestion, that lil gem goes to my partner in crime. ;o) I think they're seriously thinking of changing their minds. Personally I think the team would like nothing better than to take pot shots of their managers. But that's just me!!

So with my last day tomorrow, I'm feeling slightly off. I've been with my team for 8 years and there's been lots of laughs (mainly from them laughing at my attempts to manage them) and tears (usually mine as I tear my hair out from their juvenile behaviour). ;o) And now it's all coming to an end. *sniff* So in true leaving style the team decided that we would need some executive toys for our new job, just to help us get into that mindset. Those toys consisted of a 'shocking' arm wrestling kit, (for when the staff become unruly and instead of hitting each other they get to wrestle). A wise talking Yoda (that answers all the important executive questions, such as who will make me coffee today). Separately my partner got a remote control armchair complete with booze for when the pressure gets too much and he needs to relax. And yours truly got a leather whip, for whipping the new team into shape. ;o) You've got to admire their ingenuity and cheek. ;o) Well at least now when my new team are being opinionated and unruly, I can say with confidence, "Don't make me get the whip out!" It will no longer be an idle threat. ;o)

I can't wait!! My new team have no idea about my humour, so this should be quite interesting.

Sunday, 11 November 2007


Part of the reason why I love Stargate Atlantis is that it allows me to expand my brain capacity and think about things. While I love the episodes that just allow me to sit back and relax, I do now and again enjoy a change in pace. Mythology and varying cultures along with SciFi elements is why I tune in each week. The fact that there are so many sexy men on there is just an added bonus. ;o) This week 'Missing' aired and revolved around a more darker story arc than SGA has seen to date. This area of story telling touched on it with Common Ground in Season 3, and this felt like an extension of that general feeling in many ways, such as the will to survive against all odds.
Now I know there have been mixed reviews with this episode for various reasons. Like any character centric episode you'll have people who didn't enjoy the story as much as they miss the team element. I am one of those that need to feel the team's presence in an episode even if the focus is on my favourite character. I think this episode achieved that more than Travelers did, although I have a tendency to be like Oliver Twist and want more. The team elements for me were balanced just right in Tabula Rasa, but did those 'missing elements' stop me from enjoying the ep with Teyla and Doc Keller as the main focus? Nope, not at all. In fact the episode left me with a feeling that there were more questions than answers. Not everything was tied up into a nice little package and it left things to the viewers imagination. It certainly felt as if this episode spawned several small story arcs that will hopefully enlighten us in the coming episodes.

The premise was set with Teyla and the Doc heading off world, series of events take a nasty turn and the two women have to literally kill or be killed from a nomadic cannibalistic race after a visit to Teyla's Athosian family go missing. Given what has happened, Teyla's survival skills kick into place and she heads for the dark side, turning her fear and uncertainty into something much darker. The doc, who is so much like a female version of McKay (that it's scary), LOL, doesn't feel as if she's up to the challenge. I have to say that there were times when I felt she need a good slap upside the head on occasions. Thankfully though she stepped up to the plate when it became necessary and we got to see some very nice bonding scenes between the two very different women, not to mention the creation of a new enemy, the Bola Kai and some very nice kick ass fight scenes. That along with the use of cat and mouse games throughout the 42 minutes made this a very enjoyable episode.

Towards the end of the episode we see Teyla talking to Sheppard, and that one particular scene felt as if something was brewing just under the surface for Teyla. Something that will not doubt have an impact on her actions in future eps, not to mention that there could be some serious issues between her and the team. I got the sense (whether i'm right or not) that Sheppard for once didn't know what to say to Teyla. With her emotions and resolute at finding her people spiralling out of control, I do think that it left Shep uncertain on what to say to her. It's his way to bury his emotions and feelings about certain aspects of his darker side, but it's not hers. So I look forward to where this takes us.

Oh my i'm rambling again... so, what were my favourite parts?
  • Girl Bonding
  • Teyla's turn to the dark side
  • Kick ass fight scenes
  • New primitive bad guys
  • Insight into Teyla and Doc K's past
  • Athosian history and culture
  • Boys coming to the rescue
  • Shep in fight mode
  • Great scenery and lighting
  • Thought provoking storyline
  • Set up of future arc's

Phew i've actually said more than I planned! Did I not say it was thought provoking at the start? Hopefully next week we'll see the return of lots o team moments in 'The Seer'! With the return of the Common Ground Wraith that fed on Shep! Oooh the angst potential it could bring. I really hope that the writers do justice with this one and don't do a repeat of.... that Irresponsible ep!! *growls*

You know one of these days blogger will actually start to like me again, and not screw up the formatting so I have to go back in several times and fix it! If any one has any solutions, please let me know. ;o)

Sunday, 4 November 2007

With Tabula Rasa airing on Friday, I thought it was about time to do my long overdue review for Travelers and for Tabula Rasa! I'm getting caught up after a hectic week... but i'll save that for another day. So, let's start off with Travelers. A gift to the whumpers, and it certainly lived up to our expectations, I can assure you. However, what I wasn't prepared for was the backlash that followed. Who knew the fandom could get into such a tizzy over one little kiss?! So,are you all sitting comfortably? Shall I begin?


The concept was set some time ago, when Mr M issued a message to the Shep whumpers via his blog, that this episode was to be our gift!! We squeed, and speculated, then had to wait for months. There was talk of building a time travel machine, and the pre-discussion thread for this ep over on Gateworld actually felt like a second whump thread. Nails were bitten to the quick. Our heart rate increased exponentially as the time for Travelers and DG got closer, until finally it arrived! While the whump certainly lived up to our standards. *squee for blood* alas some of us felt that once we arrived on the episode discussion thread that we had to continually defend Sheppard's actions in this ep! So what was the controversy? Well, let me put it this way, a little kiss and some innuendo.

Suddenly threads are popping up all over the place that Shep was a slut, was unfit for command. And brace yourself people.. he flirted! I know, shocking isn't it. Well, apparently to some people *waves to FAII* it was the crime of the century. Now normally i'm quite a shy and reserved sort of person, and I really don't like to cause chaos and mayhem, and certainly I have no desire to derail any thread, no matter how ridiculous I feel it is. But, it was just too much fun to ignore, and yes ill freely admit that I had great fun blowing that poster out of the water. For some strange reason he really dislikes me, and my thoughts. Apparently i'm childish, immature, irreverent, and get on his nerves. And this is something new? :o)

So we debated back and forth about the kiss and Shep being unfit for command as a result of being a complete slut. You can just imagine my eyes rolling at that statement can't you? So, with smut being the topic of conversation, let's just say, it was not my fault the subject of boobs was brought about. I was simply trying to stand my ground and make a point. And if the thread descended into chaos and mayhem as a result of that, well, that's the way it goes sometimes.

So what did I adore apart from all of it? Bear in mind that this was a Shep episode, it's not just my obsessive compulsiveness with the dashing pilot. :P

  • Sheppard being captured, tied up and beaten. (Maybe I was a dominatrix in a previous life)? :o)
  • Sheppard getting all bloody!! Yes that does excite me, and no i'm not a vampire. :P
  • Very rarely do we get to see true ramifications of actions, like cuts and bruises, so for me this was a definite highlight.
  • Shep being irreverent and playing hard to get. ;) (That one was for you FAII)
  • Shep using his ATA gene do access the control systems on the Aurora class ship, the control chair and the internal communications device!
  • Shep being resourceful and using his smarts to get out of situations
  • Larrin using her feminine wiles, and innuendo. (What?) *pretends to look innocent*
  • The fleet of puddle jumpers at the rescue
  • Continuity in the ep (ala Common Ground S3)
  • Great story and cinematography... the lighting to was amazing and very pretty
  • Tentative alliance with the Travelers.

Best lines:
"Just remember not to shoot to early... i'm guessing that's not the first time you've heard that from a women." *giggles*

The bad points. Well, just a couple. Although I understand that there are time restraints in the episode, I would have loved to have seen and heard more about the Travelers. Who they were, how they came to be, where they lived. What their culture was like and to meet the people. Alas i'm assuming that the writers are saving that for another day. The only other point I wanted to say was that I missed the team. In reunion, although it was a Ronon centered ep, we got to see a lot of team interaction, and unfortunately for me that felt a bit flat in this episode.

I honestly thought that this ep would be similar to Common Ground, as in we (as the viewer) would see the angst of his colleagues, and for me, I guess I didn't feel that as much as I did in CG. Nevertheless it was a great story, plot, we got to see the ATA gene and Shep in action. An all round great ep!

Tabula Rasa!

Unless you've fallen asleep reading this by now. LOL. From the onset, the whole episode felt very different. Whether it was due to how they filmed it, the lighting effect or the actually story itself (Writer Alan McCullough - Directed by the wonderful Martin Wood). The episode was pure class from start to finish. Set up with McKay tied to a chair, the episode went from strength to strength. Each character was given the opportunity to shine (which I love) and the whole episode felt as if the SGA family had finally been established. Now you know how much I adore bonding, mistrust, team moments, angst and not to mention whump and infirmary scenes. Well it had all this and more, including some great lines and interactions between the team. So I know you're getting tired listening to me ramble, but you know how I get when I haven't had the opportunity to chatter with you all, I go off on a tangent! Anyway what I adored in this episode;

  • Team episode
  • Great character moments between Teyla and Rodney, and Shep and Ronon.
  • Teyla being patient with McKay and keeping him focused. It was a really nice surprise to see her upfront and center in this, and she really felt as if she was an integral part of the story! Thank goodness, it's been a while, and she never disappointed me.
  • The Ronon and Shep scenes were for me one of the best i've seen. Ronon getting frustrated with Shep when he lost his memory and trying to be patient... and failing miserably. LOL.
  • Ronon shooting Shep and saying, "Never get's old!" best SGA line to date. Whether that was an ad lib or not i'm not sure, but it has to be said, Shep getting shot really doesn't get old. LOL.
  • Ronon grabbing Shep by the hair. Not sure if that was added, but Jason seemed to be enjoying that scene quite a bit. LOL
  • Mistrust played up between the soldiers and scientist.
  • Radek going nuts with his pipe.
  • McKay and his insecurities (That's always endearing).


  • The infirmary scene and team loving at the end *sniffles*.

I do love infirmary scenes, I can't help it I get really gushy and my heart melts when they stand by the person's bedside asking them if they're ok, and how they're feeling. *sniff* I can't help it, i'm a whumper, and where better to show team bonding than when someone is sick. Joe Flanigan does vulnerable very well, and I guess that's the part of the charm. And we got CHEST PEEKAGE! *dies* Well after all of that I felt as if the quest had been successful LOL, whether that was intentional to have Sheppard in scrubs or not. I would just like to send oodles of hugs for giving us that scene. It has to be said that, that is the best infirmary scene to date.

Best line: Ronon, "Never gets old!" *giggles*

Low points. None!

This year the episodes showcased have shown just how much SGA has come into it's own. Great story lines, plot, characterization. Writing, direction, lighting, CGI, whump, team bonding and not to mention EVIL SHEP and Chest peekage! S4 is turning into a great season and with another 14 episodes to go, I look forward to seeing what else is in store.

So don't forget what you have to do, apart from petitioning Mr M for shirtless Shep!

Stargate Atlantis: Watch it live on SciFi 10pm every Friday!

Oh I meant to say that Sky are actually advertising Stargate Atlantis! That's got to be a first. For weeks Zak Selwyn has been tooting his rap song, and today they actually aired the full version! Sky, let me stand and applaud you for at last advertising a great programme! let's just hope it continues!

*looks up at her blog* What can I say i'm a chatterbox. And I never even got to tell you that I got my promotion!! Woohooo, go me. I'm now the man!! I just hope I don't have to tape my boobs down now. ;) I'll tell you all about it in the next installment along with a presentation I have to give on Stargate Atlantis. Oh well it should be interesting if nothing else. The whole of my work will finally know that i'm a SciFi geek.... I wonder if I can get hold of some visual aides... Hmmmmm.

Excuse the formatting, I think Blogger has the hiccups!