There was a great discussion on Friday's edition of Newsnight, discussing whether Britain, as a nation, is becoming more 'high-brow', or whether we are 'dumbing-down'. The arguments were many and varied, from the high sales of popular science and philosophy books, to the increased broadsheet coverage of fashion and pop music. The conclusion seemed to be that Blair's "expanding middle class" have their collective finger in many different cultural pies, and there's nothing intrinsically wrong with watching The Simpsons one minute and reading a book on Derrida the next.
Well, that's all very interesting in theory, but I didn't appreciate quite how true it was until the excellent party I went to last night, where the conversation flowed neatly from South Park (and the obligatory Cartman impressions) to recent contemporary fiction at the drop of a hat. It was good fun, a real laugh, and made a neat change to be socialising with some different people. I'm glad that I dragged myself away from my PC hassles for a while.
Psion problem not solved. Things are going from bad to worse. I remain information-poor, unable to respond to my emails, update my website (sorry!) or even just plug receipts into MS Money. I've screwed up big and proper this time. I'm still unable to resolve my hardware conflicts, it looks like the only inexpensive 'solution' is going to be unplugging my (internal) modem every time I want to link the PC to the Psion, which is just ridiculous.
Psion technical support weren't much help, though admittedly I did accidentally cut them off during the call, which didn't assist matters. There has to be a simple solution to this; I'll ask some colleagues tomorrow, see if they can inspire me.
In the meantime, my emails will have to go unanswered for another five days or so. I feel very guilty about this, to the extent that I'll probably mail from work tomorrow.