Dan Beeston is

Brushing Off Invisible Spiders

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    My life has been up in the air the last fourteen months. Today is one of those days where I feels like it's never going to go back to normal.

    I want my house to be fixed and my home to go back to normal so that I can worry about Covid.

    I want Covid to be fixed so that I can worry about the environment.

    I want the environment to be fixed so I don't have any worries at all.

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    I turned 47 yesterday. To celebrate I had my car radio replaced. No more dodgy AV cable for me. It's Bluetooth compatible with my phone. Also the volume knob works correctly. My last volume knob would random go up or down when I twisted it. It was noise roulette.

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    I've been jumping up early and skipping the reddit/social media trap that I often fall into. Instead, I make a cup of tea and get straight to work. It really works for me. I end up getting the bulk of my day's work done by lunchtime. Really power through it. Then when the mid afternoon tiredness hits I can afford to chill out a bit.

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    I used to post constantly on Facebook. I've no idea what it was I thought was so vital to share with so many people. Now I'm challenged to keep this little pages alive and all I can think to write is... well... this.

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    I'm so exhausted today. My brain can't focus on anything. I had a big Saturday with a lot of socialising and a couple of emotionally challenging moments but surely I should have recovered for that by now. Am I really the old and easily fatigued these days?

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    There's a lot of death hanging around in my life at the moment. Two elderly relatives hang on by a thread. The Godfather of Impro passed away. My wife's old colleague lost her two children. It's almost St. Patrick's day which puts me in mind of a favourite teacher who passed within the last year.

    It's almost all on the periphery but there's definitely a vibe that I am not on board with.

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    I have a surname that is fairly uncommon. I've stumbled upon it a mere handful of times outside of my direct family. And so it was with an enormous amount of shock that I was watching Enola Holmes 2 and a villainous policeman addressed one of his henchmen as 'Sergeant Beeston'. My delight is only tinged with the concern that someone was looking for an 1800s style surname that reflects a bone-headed thug and settled on my nom sans plume.

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    Some days you wake up feeling great. You launch into the work day and get heaps of stuff done. Other days you feel like trash. You feel so bad that you blow off the day. Take a reprieve. Treat yourself to some self care.

    And then there are days like today. Where you feel like crap, but not crap enough to just bail. You almost want to convince yourself that you feel a little bit worse than you do to give yourself permission. But you can't. You just have to grit your teeth and do the damn work.

  • June

    • Night Agent

      Truly cheesy spy drama. Actors are okay making it vaguely watchable.
  • May

    • Lucky Hank

      I'm loving this so far. It's clever and cynical and heartfelt. Good gosh it's good.
    • Sandman

      A bit fantastical but some really good human stuff as well.
    • Tears of the Kingdom

      All the joy of playing BotW again but with new interesting discoveries to be made.
    • Upstart Crow

      Second Rate Blackadder
  • April

    • Feed the Deep

      Demo Game. Fun.
    • GTA5

      This game is unpleasant. I'm not sure whether at some point it'll click for me but it feels like a game for terrible people.
    • Hades

      I've been playing this almost constantly for over a year. I've claimed every single reward that's possible. It's probably time for me to put it on the shelf for a while.
    • If this book exists you're in the wrong universe.

      Had its moments but nothing really special.
    • Samus Returns

      It's okay.
    • Steamworld Dig 2

      Very solid metroidvania with a big of a slow start.
    • The Last of Us

      Very compelling and I usually hate zombie stories.
    • The Madalorian - S3

      It's starting to feel a bit more generic Star Wars and that's not really a good thing.
  • March

    • Atlanta

    • Encanto

      A little too many 'manifest destiny' vibes but good songs.
    • Flight Simulator 2020

      The novelty falls off fast.
    • Lightyear

      Pretty fun Pixar fare.
    • Luca

      Mediocre kid's film. Nothing in this for adults.
    • Modern Family

      Seems a bit trite but it's good enough to give a go.
    • Neon Abyss

      Twin Stick Rogue-like. Seems fun. Lots to discover I suspect.
    • Psychonauts 2

      Clunky to control. I'm hoping at some point something clicks but so far I'm underwhelmed.
    • Star Trek Beyond

      A decent little adventure with some cool stuff.
    • Supraland

      The original game. So good at upping your skills.
    • Thor: Love and Thunder

      It feels like a lot of deleted scenes were left in the movie. Doesn't deserve the emotional scenes it wants to have.
  • February

    • Batman Arkham 2

      It's not grabbing me. I may not go back to it.
    • Enola Holmes 2

      Not a great detective story but pleasant enough to watch. Has my surname mentioned in it which was a treat.
    • Factorio - Industrial Revolution 3

      Such an interesting mod. It's got its hooks in again.
    • FlintHook

      Tricky Roguelike that I'm trying to get better at.
    • Lawn Mowing Simulator

      Another zen-like simulator game where I'm sure I'll muck around with it for a little while and then be shocked that I've invested a hundred hours into it.
    • Ori and the Blind Forest

      Crazy good Metroidvania
    • Ori and the Will of the Wisps

      Even better Metroidvania. Amazing how well made this is.
    • Poker Face

      I'm really into this amateur detective show. Someone said it was like Columbo. I agree.
    • Still Taskmaster

      This show is such great fun. I'm up to season 8
    • The Sea Beast

      Pretty solid little kids film. I liked it enough.
    • The Shepard's Crown

      Prachett's final novel is special for what it means. The story itself has some charm but lacks some as well.
    • Wednesday

      Starts a bit teeny but finds its feet fairly quickly.
  • January

    • Bad Eggs

      Needed some comfort food. Such a pleasure to see this again. 20 year anniversary this year.
    • Cities Skylines

      Returned to this because I need something restful while I heal.
    • Doom

      Crazy well made game. A joy to make my way through.
    • Hollow Knight

      Revisiting this. It's easier than last time but more frustrating because it's not that much easier.
    • Irreverent

      Pretty compelling drama. I'm into it.
    • Parks and Rec

      A little bit of bubblegum while I heal.
    • Star Trek - 2009

      Watching this again after TNG makes me realise just how bad this movie is. Too much sex and violence.
    • Stranded Deep

      Not very pleasant controls. Feels half finished. Needs plenty of time to get into I suspect.
  • December

    • Bloodstained

      Castlevania homage. I cannot get into it. Might try again in a few months.
    • Galaxy Quest

      Such a great film. It takes its conceit and runs with it.
    • Hollow Knight

      Playing it for a second time and it's still a stressful game.
    • Rick and Morty S5b

      Really solid series. Looking forward to rewatching it all.
    • Star Trek - Nemesis

      Not as clever as the others. A bit too rambunctious and doesn't really earn the emotional beats. A portent of what was to come.
    • Subnautica Sub Zero

      More great underwater action. Not quite as scary.
    • Supraland 6 inches under

      Same old 3D metroidvania. Such a great series.
    • Supraland Crash!

      Great puzzles. 100%ed it
    • Ted Lasso - S2

      Nice to revisit these characters.
    • The Peripheral

      Grim time-travel adventure. Not enough levity and so much violence. Cool world building though.
    • TimeCrimes

      Odd little Italian time travel story. Does plenty with a little. Slightly better than average.
    • Turning Red

      Some charming moments but it's very targeted towards a specific demographic that I am not a part of.
  • November

    • Andor

      A bit slow, but that's better than overly frenetic.
    • Cobra Kai - S5

      What a great resolution. Made me cheer. Still cheesy. People love cheese.
    • Star Trek First Contact

      I remember this movie well. So lovely to revisit it. Probably my favourite.
    • Star Trek Generations

      So much more context this time. Like a good episode.
    • Star Trek Insurrection

      Top notch sci-fi.
    • Subnautica

      Really pretty game. A pleasure to learn and explore.
    • Taskmaster

      Wonderful bubblegum.
  • October

    • Borderlands 2

      Not a huge amount of depth but I LOVE that I aim using the motion controls.
    • Cobra Kai - S4

      If you can accept that everyone in the town is karate mad then it's an interesting cautionary tail about violence.
    • Feet of Clay

      Trying out Audible. It's weird having to concentrate so hard one what I'm listening to. Not sure if audio books are for me. Great story though.
    • Horizon - Zero Dawn

      I spend all my days looking forward to playing this.
    • She-Hulk

      Fun meta humour and other lightheartedness. I'm kind of into it.
    • Sonic 2

      Nostalgia city
  • September

    • Bioshock - Minerva's Den

      Fun. Fast. Made me enjoy taking over machines.
    • Bioshock - Under the Sea 1

      Hard. Sometimes annoying and a bit buggy. Still fun.
    • Bioshock - Under the Sea 2

      Stealth game. Totally different feel. Annoying but fun.
    • Bioshock Infinite

      A much more fun game the second time round now that I'm better at shooting.
    • Brooklyn 99 - Finale season

      Better than I'd hoped. A couple of very politics heavy ones but a satisfying result for all characters.
    • Cobra Kai - S3

      It just gets cheesier as you go. But that's what it says on the tin :)
    • Feudal Alloy

      Tricky metroidvania to get into but satisfying to master.
    • Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality

      Impressive fan fic. Huge long book I ended up not being able to put down.
    • Lost in Space -S3

      This show is pretty cheesy but I'm super invested. Can't recommend it enough.
    • The Messenger

      What started out as a fairly basic platformer took some very interesting turns as I progressed.
  • August

    • Billy the Kid

      It's kind of fun to engage with this genre. It's pretty compelling.
    • Bioshock

      Such a classic game. I played the crap out of this when I was younger.
    • Bioshock 2

      I've not played this before. It really mixes up the gameplay and refines it. I'm quite impressed.
    • Locke and Key

      Complex and tonally yoyoing.
    • Ms Marvel

      Actually kind of interesting to watch something from cultures I'm not usually exposed to.
    • Shredder's Revenge

      Feels like a game that would be worth getting good at. Not sure I have the attention span.
    • TrainWreck

      Documentary on Netflix about the Woodstock 99 riot. Lots of semi-misinformation. The creators had an agenda.
    • Who Shat on the Floor at my Wedding

      Cute conceit but they ran out of ideas very early on.
  • July

    • Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality

      Fan fiction about Harry using the scientific method. Bad character writing but really fun ideas.
    • Stranger Things 4

      Too little poltergeist, too much Hellraiser.
    • The Umbrella Academy - S3

      Wonderful world to drop back into.
  • June

    • Bastion

      Precursor to Hades. Kind of slow and awkward. But pretty.
    • Super Meat Boy

      Challenging platformer. Feels satisfying to make progress.
  • May

    • Dr Strange 2

      Standard MCU fare with little story and pretty set pieces. Not that impressive.
    • Factorio - Vanilla

      I keep coming back.
    • Hades

      I finished pretty much everything that could be finished. Amazing game.
    • Strange New Worlds

      Seems really fun. Charismatic cast. Clever stories. I have high hopes.
    • The Long Journey Home

      Looks like there might be fun story things here but I have no patience for the clunky gameplay.
    • Tony Hawk 1+2

      It feels like picking up a guitar. The muscle memory half kicks back in. But only half. So much nostalgic fun.
  • April

    • Brooklyn 99

      Watching random episodes because we need something reassuring.
    • Everything, Everywhere, All at once.

      Frenetic and silly. Enjoyable without being life-changing.
    • Factorio - K2

      Closing in on the end game. It's been so calming.
    • Hades

      Requiring reassuring media. It's not surprising I've fallen back into this.
    • Johah Hex

      I half watched this while doing something else and it seems like nonsense.
    • Palm Springs

      Charismatic time loop film. I had my expectations too high but nice enough.
  • March

    • Astroneer

      Quite cumbersome on Switch but zen like enough to while away some time.
    • Recursion

      Really fun to read sci-fi adventure. Pleasantly challenging to think about.
    • Tetris 99

      It's Tetris
    • The Adam Project

      Great sci-fi conceit that turns into generic action a third of the way through.
    • The Binding

      I started this ages ago and found it a bit of a slog but once it kicked into gear it was a decent little yarn.
    • The Martian

      Read this again. Engaging yarn.
  • February

    • Peacemaker

      Fun. Binge watched it over a weekend.
    • The Tinder Swindler

      Interesting but somewhat unsatisfying true crime story.
  • January

    • Death's Door

      Tough iso fighter. I kind of drifted off after a while.
    • Donkey Kong Tropical Freeze

      Same old Donkey Kong Country. Pleasant to while away time.
    • Factorio - K2

      I'm playing Krastorio again. Trying a train based factory.
    • Futuristic Violence and Fancy Suits

      Fun sci-fi by one of the Internet's best funny writers.
    • Ghosts

      Delightful British humour. Feels cozy.
    • Knives Out

      A pretty decent murder mystery film.
    • Script Apart

      Deconstructing first drafts of films. Love it.
    • Star Trek - DS9

      A bit less thoughtful than Next Gen but has some decent sci-fi conceits in there. Characters aren't as likeable yet.
    • The Witness

      Slightly easier to play a second time. Fiendish puzzles though.
  • December

    • A Monster's Journey

      I finished this off. Hard but satisfying puzzles.
    • Hades

      Can't stop. Won't stop.
    • Hawkeye

      The more intimate Marvel shows seem to be the more compelling ones. Hope it sticks the landing.
    • Noita

      A very tricky Rogue-like platformer that's luckily very fun to die in.
    • Spiderman - No Way Home

      The underlying mechanism that requires linking cool set pieces together feels a bit unnatural and uninspired this time round. Good fan service though.
    • Spiderman - The Europe one

      Spiderman does whatever a spider can. Was pleasant enough but probably would have been better if I hadn't been spoiled on plot points.
    • Star Trek - Next Gen S7

      We're almost to the end. It's so nice to fill this hole in my pop-culture knowledge.
  • November

    • GhostBusters: Afterlife

      Though character development was minimal and plotting formulaic it was fun to watch.
    • No Time to Die

      A fun enough James Bond movie.
    • Satisfactory

      Update 5 is out so I'm having a little play around. Though I kind of want to wait until V1.0 to do a proper run.
    • Sunless Sea

      Revisiting a Roguelike that I originally bounced off to see if I've changed.
    • The Movies that Made Us 3

      Fun pop culture doco
  • October

    • Control

      I thought there would be more telekinetic puzzle solving. There's more 'shoot man in face' than I expected.
    • Dead Cells

      Tried to get back into this rogue like but I don't have the patience to git-gud.
    • Luigi's Mansion 3

      Well produced but the novelty of the series is wearing a bit thin.
    • Pretty Smart

      I make it 8 minutes into this terribly written sit-com.
    • Star Trek - Next Gen S6

      Still plowing through. Still good.
  • September

    • Hades

      It's official. I'm addicted. I've been ignoring everything else while I play the crap out of this.
    • Rick and Morty - S5

      It often feels very frantic. A couple of decent episodes and one terrible one.
    • Rosehaven - S5

      Only two episodes left. I'm going to miss these guys.
    • Star Trek - Next Gen S5

      There are still many gems in this show this late in.
  • August

    • Axiom Verge 2

      I loved the original and the sequel didn't quite hit the same heights. I was surprised how quickly it ended and how easy it was.
    • Bo Burnham's Inside

      Oh my heart! This was incredibly artful and touching.
    • Hacks

      Very average. I can't see why people love this. Still some episodes to go. edit: It got much better.
    • Hades

      Not usually a fan of Roguelikes but this one is pretty fun to play.
    • Monster's Expedition

      I had high expectations and it's just a very well put together puzzle game.
    • Star Trek - New Gen S4

      Still solid with a couple of really great eps.
  • July

    • Breath of the Wild

      Second time playing. Such an exceptional game.
    • Factorio - Krastorio

      I'm back. I'm addicted.
    • Inner Space

      It's amazing how simple the storylines from these old films were.
    • Love This City

      Seems apt now that we've won the Olympics.
    • Star Trek - New Gen S3

      Lots more character driven drama at the expense of the sci-fi. Still fun to watch but misses the Roddenberry touch.
    • The movies that made us

      Well made stuff. Makes me happy.
  • June

    • Code 8

      Neat world building ends without a decent climax.
    • Darknet Diaries

      Engaging stories of the InfoSec world. Really good value.
    • Factorio - IR2

      Finally launched a rocket in IR2. Little bit grindy but overall quite satisfying.
    • Loki

      Episode 1 makes me excited for episode 2.
    • Rick and Morty - S5

      It's back baby! And still such high quality. I'm waiting for the other boot to drop.
    • Space Cop

    • Star Trek - New Gen S2

      Such strong writing. Still really into it.
    • The Switch

      Jason Bateman and Jennifer Aniston in a terrible terrible film about rape by deceit. Fun to make fun of.
    • The Witcher 3

      Only a few hours in and I'm not sure what to make of it. I seem to be picking a lot of flowers.
  • May

    • Factorio - IR2

      Addiction is a helluva thing.
    • Jumanji - Welcome to the Jungle

      Vaguely amusing kid's film with a handful of decent laughs.
    • Monster Boy

      Really great Metroidvania based on possibly my favourite game.
    • Star Trek - New Gen

      Still churning through this series. I could be here a while.
  • April

    • Brooklyn 99 - Series 7

      So pleased to be back here. Bubblegum for the brain.
    • Cosy Grove

      Very zen-like game about collecting twigs and seashells. It's nice to not be challenged for a bit.
    • Flood

      They Might Be Giants best work.
    • Mario + Rabbids Kingdom Battle

      UFO clone. Mildly fun but it's not capturing me.
    • Shovel Knight

      Well made platformer. Just frustrating enough to be a good challenge.
    • Soul

      Like pizza, even when they're average, Pixar movies are great.
    • Star Trek - New Gen

      I can't believe it's taken me this long watch something I think is so great.
    • The Orville

      For a series set in the future by a notorious 'leftie', it pushes some really 1990s social politics. Not good.
    • The Platform

      Brazilian psychological thriller. Wonderfully engaging until it just stops. Dead. Unsatisfying.
    • Venom

      Enjoyed this when I was on a plane. Revisiting it is... grounding.
  • March

    • 3 Bags Full

      Sheep solve shepherd's murder. Cute detective story that doesn't really stick the landing.
    • Spy

      Melissa Macarthy does a great job. Very funny and engaging film.
    • The Mandalorian S2

      Still wonderfully slow paced and engaging.
    • The Orville

      Halfway through S1. Pleasant but flawed. I hear season 2 kicks off though.
    • The Touryst

      Lovely little puzzle exploration game with great voxelart.
    • WandaVision

      Nice reserved pacing. Pleasant mystery.
  • February

    • Beverley Hills Cop

      Holy Cow! This film is still so great. When the theme cropped up I had a nostalgic moment.
    • Cadillac Man

      Robin Williams and Tim Robbins is an intimate little film where little happens.
    • Half Live 2

      I've tried playing this twice before but I seem to be onboard this time round.
    • Minecraft

      The Switch version is currently awkward to play and buggy to run. Absolutely would not recommend.
    • Robocop 2

      A pale imitation of the first film but does has some delightful moments.
    • Ted Lasso

      Watched the first 4 eps. Really enjoyed it. Looking forward to the rest.
    • The Apartment

      It's nice watching old films occasionally. They care so much about the product but have no short-cuts to help them with pacing.
    • iZombie S4

      The procedural elements have fallen by the wayside and a tornado of hubris has scooped the show up.
    • iZombie S5

      I found myself looking forward to the end and when it came it mostly stuck the landing.
  • January

    • CrackerJack

      I love a good underdog sports movie. This one about lawn bowls is one of my favs.
    • Doctor Who: Rev of the Daleks

      As disappointing as ever.
    • Factorio

      IR 2 is still kicking my ass. I'm almost up to ore washing.
    • Mario Kart 8

      Playing a vs. video game with my wife. That hasn't happened since Wii sports.
    • Ori and the Will of the Wisps

      These Ori games are something else. Like playing a painting.
    • Pikmin 3 Deluxe

      There's something so zen-like about these games. So nice to revisit the universe.
    • The Watch

      I leaned into the massive changes they had planned and I'm into it. Looking forward to the next ep.
    • iZombie S3

      Still enjoying this. It doesn't seem to be collapsing under the weight of its lore yet.
  • December

    • A Moody Christmas

      Australian Cringe-Comedy. Good performances and great to watch.
    • Dark

      Binged the final season. I really got into this complicated mystery.
    • Factorio

      Industrial Revolution 2 mod was released. I'm in heaven.
    • Link to the Past

      The original SNES Zelda but on my old GBA
    • Mario Kart 7

      It's like putting on old shoes. Very comfortable but not as satisfying as brand new shoes.
    • Quake 2

      Yes, that's right. QUAKE 2! 800x600 the way it was meant to be.
    • We Happy Few

      Nice style and tone but plays like a dog. Gave up almost immediately.
    • Zelda: Link Between Worlds

      Holy Cow! What a nostalgia button.
    • iZombie S2

      I like the procedural elements. The arc, less so.
  • November

    • Connected

      Goofy pop-science. Pleasant bubble-gum for the mind.
    • Dark

      Still watching.
    • Emily in Paris

      Tried to watch this to make fun of it but it's so lackluster. I feel dumber for having watched the pilot.
    • Gato Roboto

      I like the 1-bit art but it hasn't captured me like other metroidvanias.
    • John Mulaney

      The 2 stand up specials on Netflix were a good comedy feast.
    • Satisfactory

      I've returned to this with a more relaxed attitude. Just enjoying building stuff.
    • Schitt's Creek

      Final Series was absolute twaddle. By the finale we were just hate-watching.
    • Snaaak

      A 10 minute game. Clever, joyous and doesn't outstay its welcome.
    • Spectre

      Latest James Bond. Ticked every box. Great fun.
    • Stick it to the Man

      A puzzle platformer that's a bit simple but great visuals and writing.
    • The Great

      A bit too low-brow for me.
    • The Queen's Gambit

      50 Fashion, Chess, addiction. This is my bag baby. Really enjoying it.
  • October

    • Beautiful People Will Ruin Your Life

      The Wombats
    • DOOM

      Doom was a pretty dumb film with a couple of decent moments. Overall disappointing.
    • Enola Holmes

      Cute teen adventure that kept my interest.
    • Free to a Good Home

      Michael Hing & Ben Jenkins are doing great stuff ATM
    • Green Lantern

      This may be the cheesiest thing I've ever seen. It is... not great.
    • Hidden Folks

      It's monochrome 'Where's Wally' and it's so darn restful.
    • Hob

      In the style of the SNES Zelda game but really beautiful and clever. I am delighted.
    • Moonlighter

      A cross between Zelda and Stardew Valley. It feels a bit grindy.
    • Shadow Complex

      This Metroidvania makes you feel unstoppable. Replaying it felt great.
    • Stick it to the man

      A charming enough puzzle-platformer with wonderful visuals.
  • September

    • Baba is You

      This game hurts my brain. It feels a lot like coding.
    • Dark

      Creepy mystery. Okay so far.
    • Guaca Melee 2

      Great Metroidvania. Very pretty. So much cultural appropriation.
    • Raven On

      They're currently reviewing all the James Bond films.
    • Rule of Threes

      Deconstructing comedy podcast.
    • Schitt's Creek

      Dry humour.
    • Solid State - Jonathan Coulton

      Man I love 'Square Things'.
  • August

    • Factorio

      Version 1 came out and I fell back in.
    • Luigi's Mansion 2

      A bit repetitive but good old Nintendo puzzles.