As everyone is aware, the world is currently facing a very testing time. For many, this means spending a considerable period of time indoors, with not much to do other than surf the internet.

I appreciate this can soon get very boring – especially when you feel you have read pretty much everything online. So, with this in mind I am putting together a semi-regular post to give you something to read when you’re bored.

Think of this as a bit of a newsletter, with a bunch of content – some new, some old – to help you pass the time. Some of the content might be a bit random, and I can’t say every post will be long, but hey, let’s see how things pan out.

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News

Let’s get the news out of the way first. Disney/Marvel Studios has put the forthcoming theatrical release of Black Widow on hold. The movie – which was due out in late April/early May – stars Scarlet Johansson and will tell a solo tale about Widow.

Various outlets are reporting the movie’s delay, which comes as no real surprise. The film has yet to be given a new date.

OK, that’s the bad stuff out of the way… let’s focus on fun stuff!

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Let’s get quizzical

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

Between March 2013 and December 2015, my friends and I would regularly get together on Wednesday evening to hang-out, play games, and generally socialise. We called these social gatherings ‘Theme Nights’, as each week we would focus the evening around a different theme (gaming, horror, Australia Day etc).

Some of these nights included quizzes – including a Scottish-themed evening for Burns Night. Below is one of the quiz rounds from Burns Night. Feel free to give it a go.

From left to right, move along each row, putting the clues together to get the name of a Scottish celebrity. Answers are at the bottom of this post (no cheating).

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From the archives

Let’s head back to fun times and the convention scene. This photo was from the mid-‘00s (maybe 2007/08) when I attended a UK convention. The person I am stood next to is Yvonne Craig, who played Batgirl in the ’60s Batman TV show.

What a legend! I am clearly happy to be stood next to her.

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Going batty

Image: ©DC Comics

Sticking with the Batman theme, I have recently published some new content on my Batman blog: I’ll Get Drive-Thru. One of the posts you might like to check out is: What is Batman: Year One, Batman: Year Two and Batman: Year Three.

Here is an excerpt from the post:

“Between 1987 and 1989, three stories were published by DC Comics which would explore significant moments in Batman’s career. These stories, which depicted events from his first, second and third years as a crime-fighter, were titled Year One, Year Two and Year Three.

“In 1987, DC Comics published Year One – a four-issue story depicting Batman’s first year in Gotham City. Written by Frank Miller, illustrated by David Mazzucchelli, and coloured by Richmond Lewis, the story focuses on Batman’s emergence in Gotham, his interactions with Jim Gordon, and the increasing crime and corruption in the city.”

To read this post in full, click on the highlighted link.

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Pimp up my pasta

I have not long eaten my dinner – I know you are all interested in this exciting revelation. Heck, I am even going to show you a picture of it!

Obviously, it is a pasta dish, but what is it exactly?

Damned if I know – I just threw something together and used the slow cooker! It’s not Masterchef, but it is a little bit better than Rate My Plate.

Like many people, I like to use up what I have in the cupboard to a.) save money and b.) reduce waste. As such, for tonight’s evening meal I decided to make something cheap that could use up some of the odds and ends knocking around my kitchen.

The meal was a home-made pasta dish, with chips! Simple to make, inexpensive and it fed two of us. Yes, I know it is a lot of carbs but hey, there are bigger issues going on than my carb intake.

Ingredients:

For the pasta dish

  • 250g dried pasta
  • ½ tin of hot dog sausages (sliced)
  • 1 x vegetable stock cube
  • 150ml warm water
  • ½ yellow pepper
  • 1 x small potato
  • 2 x carrots (yes, carrots… with pasta)
  • Pinch of mixed herbs
  • Salt & pepper

For the chips

  • 3 x medium potatoes
  • Olive oil
  • Salt & pepper

How to make the pasta dish:

Dice up the carrot, potato and pepper and chuck this into the slow cooker, along with a pinch of mixed herbs, a sprinkle of salt and pepper. Mix one vegetable stock cube with 150ml of warm water, then pour it into the slow cooker. Pop on the lid, leave the slow cooker for four hours on high… and go play some games of Mario Kart or something.

After the slow cooker has been on for about 3.5 hours, boil 250g of dried pasta in a pan with salt and water. When the pasta is about half-way though its cooking time, slice up some hot dogs and add to the same pan to cook through.

Leave for 10 minutes, then drain the pasta/hot dog combo. Switch off your slow cooker, then pour the pasta/hot dogs into the pot and stir well, ensuring everything is mixed together. And that’s your pasta done!

How to make the chips:

Slice three medium-sized potatoes into small chip shapes (leave the skins on). Put the potatoes in a pan of water and bring to the boil. As soon as the water has started to boil, drain and season with salt and pepper.

Pour some olive oil into an oven dish – not lots of oil, just enough to cover the bottom of the dish. Add the chips, give a little shake so they get covered in the oil and pop in the oven for 25 mins on 180C (turning the chips over half-way through the cooking time).

Serve with a bit of burger sauce, or whatever the heck you like. I’m not your mum – just do what you think is best!

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Jurassic lark

The above image and the ones below were taken in 2015 from a visit to the West Midland Safari Park. For the less discerning reader, these aren’t real dinosaurs, but rather models from the park’s dino exhibit.

As you can see, the dinosaurs were awesome and it was a bloomin’ glorious day. It was also the same day that Jurassic World came out in UK cinemas… just in case you wanted to know.

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Movies to watch to lift your spirits

Image: ©Warner Bros. Pictures

If you are feeling a little blue right now, then a good movie can help lift your spirits. Yesterday I published a post called: 43 comedies to put a smile on your face. If you are looking for ideas for fun things to watch, I recommend you click on the highlighted link and check it out.

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What I’m listening to right now

Earlier today, Scaredy Cat released a new track called Gasoline – and I am listening to it right now!

Scaredy Cat was a contestant on Ru Paul’s Drag Race UK and to date has released three songs to YouTube. I like them all, including this new one.

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Don’t quote me

Image: ©Paramount Pictures

Frank Drebin: “Wilma, I promise you; whatever scum did this, not one man on this force will rest one minute until he’s behind bars. Now, let’s grab a bite to eat.”

The above quote is from The Naked Gun (1988). Earlier today I published a post called The best Naked Gun quotes – all three movies! Click on the highlighted link to check out the rest of the quotes, which are sure to bring a smile to your cheeky chops.

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I hope this post has given you something to do for 10 minutes (maybe even longer) and I also hope that everyone is keeping well. We are all in this together – so let’s look out for one another.

Alex

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Answers to Let’s Get Quizzical

Here are the answers to Let’s Get Quizzical:

  • 1 Pea + Tear + Cap + Aldi = Peter Capaldi
  • 2 Bill + E (Ecstasy) + Con + Lolly = Billy Connolly
  • 3 Manta Ray + Park = Ray Park
  • 4 Day + Video + 10 + Ant = David Tenant
  • 5 Law + Rain + Kelly Rowland = Lorraine Kelly