Despite any justified skepticism I might have towards the medium, I have realised today that it has meant that the only cassette tapes I buy are ones that are worth putting that skepticism aside for. As such, my small tape collection is probably better and definitely more consistant than my CD and vinyl collections. Though the skepticism itself is the cause of this phenomenon, this realisation has made me less skeptical towards tapes and more eager to add to the collection. I should be glad that I was willing to buy these tapes regardless of my skepticism because it has allowed me to hear great music that I would otherwise have missed out on. If the music is not available on other media, it is worth buying on cassette. Hopefully I can keep up my high standards in this new found state of optimism.
I got my bike back from the workshop a couple of weeks ago, but I wanted pictures ready before doing the update. Sorry for the delay!
Here she is:
Shown are the new wheels, new cassette, new chain, new front derailleur, new matching white bar tape and - this is the big news - new crankset!
I was worried that the old gearset might not be compatible with a 10-speed cassette, and I was right. It was only once the workshop guys had started assembly that they confirmed my fears. Otherwise, I might have got a bargain online as with the other components. I guess I’d have probably got an ultegra crankset too, rather than the SRAM Rival you see here. It was still on sale at the bike shop anyway, and I was more concerned with getting the set-up finished and getting back out cycling. Naturally, I’ve got a new bottom bracket in there too now. I think I’m happy with the SRAM crankset: it looks nice enough and makes it more obvious that I’ve put the bike together piece by piece rather than just buying a whole groupset!
Here’s a close-up of the new drive train:
The close-up makes the evidence of winter riding painfully obvious!
I’ve ridden it a few times in its new incarnation now, and the improvement is staggering. So much less noise, so much more responsive and so much smoother. I don’t really know what else to say, it really doesn’t compare and I love riding it.
Another big endorsement for the workshop guys at J E James Sheffield as well. I did not make things easy for them, with a botched-together set-up, a few missing pieces and various incompatibilities. The old bottom bracket was so jammed in they had to take a hacksaw to it! They did a great job though, and I can’t recommend them enough. They saw me at very short notice and got everything done in a single day, despite the difficulties. Mega props.
Yesterday I had my first proper ride with the Sheffield uni cycling club and I loved every second. I’ve never done a big club ride and they are so much fun, and a real contrast to the sort of solo slogging I’ve been doing recently. Until now, I’ve had lectures and seminars every Wednesday so I’ve not been able to join them, but I plan to make the most of my final semester and cycle with them as much as possible. Can’t wait until next week!
I can’t stand meandering, badly constructed sentences in academic papers which you just know wouldn’t be tolerated in an undergraduate essay.
We get this all the time in philosophy. They drill conciseness and coherency into us at every opportunity and force us to write about huge topics in ridiculously small essays while assigning us reading that is unfocussed, rambling and incoherent.
Another culinary success from the kitchen of Chef Michel d'Hobsonne
Boil the potatoes - sliced - for 20 minutes. With 5 minutes to go, start frying the mushroom and leek on a high heat with rosemary, basil, garlic and olive oil, allowing the leek to get a little blackened. Take both pans off the heat and put the mushrooms and leek in a casserole dish. Add a few dollops of cream and crumble stilton over the top. Layer the sliced potato on top, add a few more dollops of cream and grate stilton over. Bake in the oven for 30 mins on a medium heat.
You can work measurements out yourself based on taste. I had about a 1:3 sweet potato to normal potato ratio, but you don’t have to. I was worried that the sweet potato wouldn’t work, but I needed to use it up. In the end, it complemented the sharpness of the stilton in the same way the sweetness of grapes/apple/chutney does with a cheeseboard.
“No government can now expect to be permanent unless it guarantees progress as well as order; nor can it really continue to secure order, unless it promotes progress.”—John Stuart Mill, from ‘Vindication of the French Revolution of February 1848’
“There is only one plain rule of life eternally binding, and independent of all variations in creeds, and in the interpretation of creeds, embracing equally the greatest moralities and the smallest; it is this: try thyself unweariedly till thou findest the highest thing thou art capable of doing, faculties and outward circumstances being both duly considered, and then DO IT.”—J.S. Mill, letter to Robert Barclay Fox