Friday, 12 October 2012


Apologies for not blogging recently folks, I know my one subscriber must have been waiting with baited breath for this post :0)

I don't know if everyone is the same but for me, I know that sometimes I find asking for help incredibly difficult. Not always, just sometimes. I'm not sure why, but I always have, maybe it's the fact that I feel I'm imposing on others, but who knows. At the same time, I'm a firm believer in asking for help if you need it. I know, daft huh, I don't like asking for help but believe it's the 100% the right thing to do and encourage it in others as well.

As well as asking for help there is not many things I find more frustrating than when people can help and choose not too. I'm a firm believer in karma, treating others as you'd like to be treated and helping wherever I can. With that in mind I'm doing my annual charity thing. Each year I try to do one or two events for charity. It's not much I know but you can't keep asking people for money all the time and I try to sponsor as many people doing charity events as I can. Last year it was Movember and below is a little video I made of the month.

This year I'm doing two events, The first Zombie Evacuation is more a fun run than for charity. Some of the gang from work said do you fancy it and I said HELL YEAH!!! I hope I get extremely muddy, wet and most of all I hope I make it with all my tags intact a little like some of the guys below ........but probably won't achieve the last one :0)

This year I'm also doing a parachute jump for Norwich Cities Community Sports Foundation (CSF) It’s a wonderful charity that helps over 50,000 people every year achieve their goals through sport, supporting some of the most disadvantaged, disabled and talented people across Norfolk. The Foundation's vision is to help people achieve their goals by delivering quality, innovative services through football and sport.

A link to my sponsorship page is here. Helping people is something I'm passionate about and if you can help me to help them and could sponsor me or even just share the link to this blog or my online sponsorship page it would mean the world to me and even more to the people CSF are helping.

Thank you :0) 

P.S If you hear a terrified scream on the morning of November the 18th it'll probably me 

Monday, 27 February 2012

Tossers Delight

Many people have called me a tosser in the past, and I am about to confirm it again! I love pancakes and the only way to do them properly is to toss them :0) There's a couple of photos throughout this post but none of me actually tossing I'm afraid.

As above I love pancakes and eat them on a regular basis not just on Shrove Tuesday. I'm a bit of a traditionalist so for me it's all about Lemon and sugar. Mmmmmmmmm.

But I'm now starting to wonder about the etymology of Shrove Tuesday. I know it has religious connotations and is the start of lent but what does Shrove mean? and why is it always on a Tuesday? ...Hangon, I'll go find out. The answer is 'Shrove' means being forgiven, as in your sins. (your is in Italics to imply thoe sins are yours not mine because lets be honest I'm far too awesome to be a sinner) 

Apparently peeps used to go to church and confess their sins and would be 'shriven' or forgiven before the start of Lent. As for it being on a Tuesday, well thats because its the prequel to Ash Wednesday which is 40 days before good friday which makes sense when you think about it. Oh and Ash Wednesday is called that as ash from last years Palm Sunday is what the priests daub on your forehead in a cross confirming your commitment to the big man upstairs. Sorry folks, That is why this blog is called Randomness From My Brain as thats what happens. I start thinking (or writing in this case) about one thing and go off on a completely random tangent :0)

Getting back on track pancake day eggs (courtesy of @YeOldeFarm and his chickens) flour and milk, mix them all up and fry. Making sure you grease the pan well otherwise you wont have enough movement and your pancake will stick to the pan and you'll never be able to toss it. One of my finished results is here. Not gonna lie they were awesome! Theres something simple and satisfying about pancakes and even for a complete novice chef like myself, very easy to make. Plus there's the fun of tossing it. I had 5 this year, not up to my record of 9 in 2010 but that was an exceptional year :0) As I wasn't able to take a picture or video of me tossing one off I decided to try and find you one, so here it is.

Peace and love peeps

Sunday, 19 February 2012

My 'Twitterati'

Ok, so as promised this is a post about who recommended the book Ready Player One I blogged about last week.

It was recommended to me on twitter, nothing new there, people do that sort of thing all the time dont they. But for me it was special. Really special as it was personally recommended to me by an author I'm a big fan of, Myke Cole. His book Shadow Ops: Control Point is awesome and well worth a read by the way.

The difference between twitter and other Social networking sites such as Facebook and MySpace etc (at least in my experience) is participation and engagement. On twitter, you can engage on an individual level much easier than you can on any other site. This is what I've been doing. 

I'm a massive Science Fiction and Fantasy fan and always have been. I'm also a massive Technophile. I've been on twitter for several years now, and am technically a published author thanks to David Pogue and his crowd sourced book The World According To Twitter. People who know me know that I love twitter and am always looking for funny interesting people / accounts to follow. Whenever I find a book I enjoy I often look for the author on twitter and tweet them to say I enjoyed their book or to ask them questions that have sprung to mind whilst reading their work etc.

A couple of years ago I came across Night Angel Trilogy by Brent Weeks. These books are Amazing and a must read for any fan of the fantasy genre. As well as being an awesome writer, Brent really engages with his fans on Twitter and other social media sites with Q+A's, webcasts, competitions and just replying to you. I've had many tweets answered by him, have a personalised signed bookplate from him which I won in a competition he held on there (which I've stuck in my first edition copy of his latest book Black Prism.) I once tweeted him asking for any recommendations of great books to read and he pointed me in the direction of  Peter V Brett and The Painted Man, another Amazing writer and series. I loved these books and thanked Brent for the recommendation and told Pete how awesome I thought his books were. From there I asked them both for any other recommendations and they have introduced to the worlds created by Douglas Hulick Myke Cole Brandon Sanderson and many more.

To me this is what twitter is about. Engaging with others!  I'm lucky enough to work in Social Media and have a job I love, which entails just that. Using twitter and other social media sites in a customer service capacity to help people, to answer queries, and to fix things that have gone wrong. As you've probably figured out by now, I also have a personal twitter account which I use to tweet  others, to tell the world what I'm up to, how I'm feeling, to share with my followers things that I find interesting or funny etc and to see and take in the same from the people out in the twitterverse that I follow.

I know many people who have said they don't really 'get' twitter, or that they 'have an account but don't tweet from it and only follow a few celebrities' or the 'Twitterati' as they are more colloquially known. I feel for these people and try to explain that, at least for me, twitter is about engaging people, from your friends to your neighbours next door to Barack Obama, anybody! Its about taking the opportunity to talk to people all around the world, to share a common interest, to say hi, or thank you, to ask questions, get advice, say what's on your mind or just tell everyone you have a hole in your sock.

I've also met a few people who are complete twitter sceptics saying that famous people aren't really on twitter it's 'their assistants' or that if it is them, then it's 'only because they have something to sell or promote and they don't really care about their fans.' I don't try to argue or persuade these people, everyone is entitled to their own opinion, and I'm pretty sure that some of the higher profile 'Twitterati' such as Ashton Kutcher or Lady Gaga etc (not linked because they aren't interesting enough in my eyes) probably are on twitter for those reasons. But not every famous person is. For me its people like Brent, Pete, Myke and all the other authors, famous and interesting people that I've had personal responses from, that make twitter what it really is.

Getting a personal response from people with thousands of fans following them makes my day every time. It gives me a warm fuzzy feeling inside knowing that they've taken the time to tweet little ol' Dave in sleepy Norfolk here in the UK, that they've answered a query quite possibly about something so inconsequential or random that to anyone else it's gibberish. Knowing that they didn't have to, but they chose to because of a willingness and a want to engage with their fans.

To all of them I say Thank You and that to me you are the real 'Twitterati!'  if I finally get to writing the book that's been stuck in my head for so many years, I hope to be just as awesome, engaging and welcoming to my fans as you all are to yours.

Peace and love peeps :0)

P.S. Whilst writing the last paragraph I received a tweet from Myke Cole in response to my question about a tour of the UK. Question and response within 15 minutes on a Sunday afternoon, Choice people, its choice :0)

Thursday, 9 February 2012

Ready Player One

So this book 'Ready Player One' by Ernest Cline was recommended to me. Who it was and how they recommended it, is a blog post for another day.

This is the first book in a while that's really left an impression on me and in my opinion this book is fantastic. REALLY fantastic! In fact it was responsible for a few nights of only 4 - 5 hours of sleep and also a little cut on my nose, as I was reading it on my iPad and fell asleep at about 4 in the morning with the iPad falling forwards and the edge hitting me right on Schnoz :0)

The book is set in 2044, we've used up all the oil, the world is ruined and famine and poverty are widespread throughout. Most people escape from what we have done to our planet by plugging themselves for free into the OASIS a virtual reality universe where you can be anything and go anywhere.

The creator of the game James Halliday was a lover of everything 80's from the TV shows, games, movies and music to the fashions the footwear and even the ludicrous hairstyles. Due to the games success he was a multi multi billionaire and five years ago in 2039 on the day of his death he released a video. Hallidays video gave the first clues and set his quest! Whoever solved these clues, finds the 3 keys hidden somewhere within the OASIS and successfully unlocks the gates by completing the challenges, will become his heir. No only will they inherit all his wealth, more importantly they will inherit the OASIS its self. In gaming terms this is the ultimate Easter Egg.

Parzival is one of thousands of school kids about to graduate from high school in the OASIS. It's much cheaper for governments to pay for a 'Rig' that lets kids plug in to the OASIS from home than pay for real schools. He is also a 'gunter an abbreviation of Egg Hunter and the name given to those people on the quest for the keys to the OASIS and Hallidays kingdom. Like all 'gunters, Parzival or Wade as he is known in the real world is desperate to solve the clues and complete the quest before the evil corporations of the world do. Their sole aim is to monetise, sell off and destroy the OASIS by turning it into something it was never meant to be.

What follows is a fantastic mix of adventure, imagination science fiction and some of the best characterisation I've ever read. All of which is then lovingly wrapped up in an overwhelming passion for everything 80's.

To me it's clear that Ernest Cline loves his topic. The book brilliantly written  with such love and care for detail. He writes with fantastic characterisation and character interaction and has crafted such a beautifully descriptive and detailed world.

This book is a must for any and all people who have ever thought themselves a bit of a nerd or a geek, for any fan of the adventure / science fiction genre but most of all for anyone who grew up in the 80's.

I loved this book and can not recommend it enough, especially to YOU reading this blog right now. Yep YOU! because if you've read this much (and you're not reading it because you know me) then you've got far enough in to my blog for me to say you'll love it!

You'll also be pleased to know that the rights to the film have been bought and the author is currently working on adapting his book into a screenplay.

I really hope you read it, then come back tell me what you thought or tweet me @DaveHyam

Dave :0)

Monday, 3 October 2011

Busy Week

Well its was mental last week, 2 films a comedy show and a trip up to Perth with work, come the end of the week I was knackered.

I think this is going to be a blog about stuff I've seen or heard but not going to do all in one go so I'll start with Drive

It's a film with Ryan Gosling and Carrie Mulligan about a dude (Ryan Gosling) who is a mechanic that moonlights as a get away driver and falls in love with his neighbour (Carrie Mulligan) and tries to help her and son out after her husband is released from prison and gets mixed up in a heist to pay back the men who protected him in prison. The film was a little weird if I'm honest, not bad, just weird. They intentionally didn't name Gosling's character throughout the film and he is very stand offish throughout. The film was full of lots of silences which I guess were supposed to make you feel tense and be loaded with suspense and intrigue. To be honest I thought they were more awkward than anything else. As things spiral out of control for Gosling he finds himself now in trouble with the same protection extortionists and defends himself with some very graphic and slightly randomly placed acts of brutal violence. I dont want to go into too much detail as it will give away all the plot but suffice it to say there is lots of hijinx on the way to getting everything fixed but not really that much driving.

I know everyone is raving about the film and it won the cannes film festival for best director and it WAS nicely shot, bit for me the story wasnt really there. Overall it was okay but not amazing, I guess I should come up with some kind of rating system, "out of 5" is as good as any so I'll go 3/5 for this.