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It started out so well…

THERE IS AN ELEGANT STYLE AS WELL AS HIGH-GRADE QUALITY IN THE CLOTHES WHAT HAVE ADOPTED THE REFINED MATERIALS. WE DESIGNED CLOTHING TO BE COMFORTABLE AND DURABLE WITH NATURAL FABRICS AND CARED EVERY DETAIL. THERE IS A COMFORT TO YOU FROM THE CLOTHES, AND MAKE THE BETTER FEELING AND ENJOYING OF THE LIFE INTEREST FOR YOU. THE ORIGINAL FASHION BASED ON FUNCTIONAL NEEDS AND MODERN PATTERNS. WE NEEDING A KIND OF BUSINESS, A RED-POWDER BOSOM FRIEND, ALSO NEEDING A KINO OF STRONG BRAND CULTURE WHAT URGES THEIR LIVES TO GET MORE PERFECT AND EXPRESSES OUT THEIR EMOTION. OUR GARMENTS ARE CAREFULLY TESTED FOR BECOME LONGER LASTING WEAR.

Really, they needn’t have bothered with the Made in China tag.

June 14, 2022 — 6:36 pm
Comments: 9

Foot!

It’s Monday, so have an amputated gangrenous foot! mmMMMmmm! Hey, at least I didn’t give it to you in color. In color, it’s really choice.

We went to a military show this Saturday. The standouts were the The London Branch of American Civil War Veterans, which was really a thing (but these weren’t really them).

One exhibitor proudly told me 100,000 Brits fought in the American Civil War. He didn’t specify, so I assume both sides, which is kind of a messy thing to be proud of. Being from Tennessee, I had family on both sides, too, but not sure I’m proud of it. It was the ugliest of wars.

I reckon 80% of the people who dressed up at this thing were dressed as American soldiers of one kind or another. I wonder if that’s because there’s so much more US milsurp.

June 13, 2022 — 7:37 pm
Comments: 3

Shiny

It’s a Stanley Steamer! Spotted at one of the country shows. Classic cars and steam engines are a big feature of the shows, and this is both.

I’ve got to go to a lecture tonight. It’s being given by my boss, so I really do have to go. On – what else? – local history.

I will leave you to contemplate the color version, which is big, red and shiny. I strongly suspect Stanley came out of that trailer behind him and not under his own, erm, steam.

June 9, 2022 — 3:59 pm
Comments: 3

Old man on a park bench

We were driving through Burwash over the weekend and somehow, for the first time, noticed this. Yup, it’s a bronze Rudyard Kipling on a park bench. It’s well done, too.

Burwash is where Kipling’s last home was. Bateman’s. I’ve posted about it many times. It’s one of our favorite National Trust days out, though we haven’t been in a while. We quit the NT after the year of the ‘everyone is gay’ – a dual membership was getting on for £100 anyway.

Burwash itself is a pretty little village. Imagine driving through it so many times and never noticing this.

I’m sure that plaque to the left tells more about the statue, but this is Uncle B’s photo. I was too lazy to get out of the car and cross the street.

June 1, 2022 — 8:10 pm
Comments: 5

My best friend had the whole set

I don’t know why these popped into my head today. My best friend had the whole set. I lusted after it.

It took several different keywords to find them, but I think it’s the Johnny West Family 12″ Marx action figures from the Sixties. I pinched the photos from this guy’s collection. It’s a shame it’s a bit out of focus, but you can just make out a viking, a knight of some kind and I think that’s Genghis Khan in the background.

They did more stuff than I realized! The articulated horses were awesome.

My other best friend had the GI Joe with the cheek scar and the real peachfuzz beard. I lusted after him, too.

It’s not so much that I liked dolls, it’s that I loved miniature things. Little tiny facsimiles. Friend #1 above had the Barbie Camper set and I particularly yearned after those teeny, tiny Coke bottles.

My parents stopped giving me dolls. I developed a reputation for dissecting them. This is not as serial-killerish as it sounds – we’re mostly talking about dolls that walked or talked or like that. It was much more fun to take them apart and poke at the workings than it was to play with them in the expected way.

May 26, 2022 — 8:05 pm
Comments: 6

Neat!

A Brit I know is travelling in the US at the moment and keeps posting back pictures of historical markers. They have information signs here, of course, but not in this very particular style and not in such profusion. Anyway, he seems to find them amusing.

I went looking for some of my favorites to share back and found the Historic Marker Database.

Fun! I visited some of my favorites from back home.

You can also use the topic list, series list or geographic list but honestly – the funnest thing is to click the star at the top of each page to be whisked away to a random marker.

Will 100% pull over the car to read a historic marker.

The Bell Witch, by the way, is one of my favorite quirky Tennessee stories. It was an early 19th Century poltergeist tale which, looking back, wasn’t all that exciting. But I grew up on stories from the little red book and it was edgy stuff to a six-year-old.

May 24, 2022 — 7:24 pm
Comments: 6

Iconic

Atlas Obscura has an interesting article about the vanishing SEE ROCK CITY barns. Current signage regulations means they can touch up the old ones but they can’t paint any new ones. When the barns fall down, that’s the end of it.

There were once 900 of them all across the South. It’s now down to 70, mostly in Tennessee.

Rock City is going strong, it’s the barns that are disappearing. I gather Rock City has rebranded itself a nature trail sort of thing, which sounds better.

I once lived in the shadow of Lookout Mountain. I have a vague memory of seeing Rock City when it was still Fairyland – a bunch of little gnome sculptures lit up with colored lights. In my memory, it was dilapidated and sad.

Looking at the history, though, I’m not sure the timeline is right. It may be a false memory. I may have heard my parents talk about it. I was very little when we lived there.

May 23, 2022 — 6:37 pm
Comments: 4

I can see my house from here!

Well, not from here. This is a promotional image from what many think is the coolest non-game application in VR: Google Earth.

When you get up close to things the details are kind of shit, but it’s derived from the other Google Earth, so you can go absolutely anywhere. You can fly like Superman! You can tilt and whirl and zoom. You can see everything from overhead, or fly right into the landscape. You can go faster, you can go slower.

You could also get pretty motion sick, if you’re prone to that. The default mode is supposed to mitigate that – whenever you move the image vignettes. I hate that. It makes it look like I am *not* flying around like Superman. Maybe Superman with glaucoma. Anyway, not cool.

With most applications, I have to disable the anti-motion-sickness devices because they ruin my fun.

I’m very chuffed today. I found two places I have never been able to find on Google Earth or Google Maps: my mother’s farm in Middle Tennessee and the family cabin in the Blue Ridge Mountains. Both deep in the woods, which can make it hard to follow roads. I’ve tried and failed many times on flat maps, so maybe VR does make some applications work better.

You can take screenshots in VR, but I haven’t worked out the process of getting them off VR and onto my computer. Anyway, from a Superman-eye-view, both houses look like Legos dropped in the bushes, so you aren’t missing much.

Next I want Superman’s heat vision so I can fly over those bastards in Davos and burn them to a crisp. Good weekend, everyone!

May 20, 2022 — 4:43 pm
Comments: 4

Ooooo!

This from a thunderstorm two nights ago. We only got rain. Photo from Stonehenge Dronescapes (interesting YouTube channel at the link. Seems to be mostly crop circles). Do check out the color version on Twitter.

I post that picture because I’m just too gosh-darned nice to post the picture Uncle B took of the giant rat dead on the kitchen floor. He was a chungus. Did I tell you he ate half of a 10-kilo bag of dry cat food? Yeah.

At least he had the courtesy to die in the open. I’m sitting stewing in a choking miasma of his fallen comrades. Comrats. Somewhere in the walls and cabinets of this house there are truly awful things.

Thank god it’s warm enough to open the windows and doors.

May 17, 2022 — 7:00 pm
Comments: 3

An assault on my dignity…

Pull quote from this article.

Uncle B and I sat down to write our wills today – no particular reason, we’ve been meaning to do it for ages. We had a real lawyer send us the questionnaire and everything.

THE TEMPLATE WAS IN COMIC SANS!!!

I’m not having my last will and testament codified in Comic Bloody Sans.

I’m far from a font snob (boy, I’ve known a few) but Comic Sans is the world’s #1 running font joke. It’s not even a good comic book font. It was created to communicate the words of a cartoon dog from Microsoft Bob. Remember Microsoft Bob?

Also, the document formatting was atrocious. I rejiggered the whole thing and set it in Times New Roman like a normal person.

Now I just have to decide what I want done with my earthly remains…

May 11, 2022 — 7:19 pm
Comments: 6