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Not that, you bastards! Anything but that!

bacon

Food is one of the hardest things for an immigrant to cope with. This immigrant, anyhow. It’s one thing to visit a country and immerse yourself in the local cuisine; it’s another when, five years later, not love nor money can buy you a freaking saltine cracker for your freaking soup.

Bacon. Bacon is the cruellest food. British bacon is even weirder than the Canadian stuff. I mean, it’s pretty nice in its own way, but it’s some kind of salty country ham thing. It ain’t bacon. Nome sane?

For years, there was one supermarket (not a chain, a single supermarket) that sold Oscar Mayer bacon. Sure, it was made in Spain, but somebody from OM must have overseen the process, because it was what I call proper bacon.

Then, a couple of years ago, they dropped the “Oscar Mayer” branding and relabeled it “American style” bacon. That’s an actual packet of it in the picture. Well, fair enough – the name was probably costing them a lot of money and didn’t mean diddly to Brits. It was the same true blue American bacon.

And then the quality began to slip. First the packet wouldn’t peel open properly and had to be cut up the side. Then the bacon stuck together and wouldn’t come off in cohesive strips. It was more like baconfloss. That comes from losing the American quality control, I guess.

And today? Gone from the shelf. Nowhere to be found. Not even the thin comfort of bacon strings for weasel.

It’ll have to be pancetta. Dammit.

October 17, 2017 — 7:40 pm
Comments: 41

Apocalypse Soon

ophelia

I pinched the map from the Daily Mail. The swirly thing just West of Ireland is Hurricane Ophelia. We don’t expect to see much of it here.

What the arrows show is the attending wind currents, which have sucked up huge amounts of sand from the Sahara and smoke from wildfires in Spain and made our skies weird and orange (‘Donald Trump colored’ as someone described it). The sun is (was, it’s gone down now) distinctly red-rubber-ball-ish. Very spooky. Do follow the link above and look at some color pictures.

The chickens were having none of it.

This has happened before. If experience serves, we should wake up tomorrow and find a very fine dusting of desert sand all over everything.

October 16, 2017 — 5:33 pm
Comments: 14

Wish you were here

postcard

So, ya, I took a train up the coast for a work seminar today. Archivists and the law, mainly copyright law. It turned out to be not very applicable, not least because most of the documents we handle are very, very old.

And also because my main interest was working out if we could reuse some of our old photos and artwork as postcards. And since the time I started wondering, the bottom has totally fallen out of the postcard trade.

Seriously, we can’t give them away. Britain’s oldest postcard manufacturer has just gone tits up. And the murderer is: the selfie.

Well, the selfie, plus Instagram plus the cost of postage. Thanks, Royal Mail. We still sell some folding cards — you can tuck a fiver in there and a note and it’s nice and private in an envelope and it doesn’t cost any more in postage. But only the terribly old buy postcards, and they mostly buy them for souvenirs.

And that’s it for a tuckered weasel tonight. Have a good weekend, all!

October 13, 2017 — 8:03 pm
Comments: 15

In praise of the messy

thekeep

I went to a lecture tonight. It revolved around a cache of hundreds of 18th Century personal letters that turned up in the back of a closet.

Think of this, O ye tidy folk — all the history we have comes from someone in the past who couldn’t bear to throw something away. However hard it is for us to believe it, everything you can see in the room where you are sitting will be interesting in a hundred years, fascinating in two hundred and a priceless antique in three.

The picture is from the About page of The Keep — the repository of the East Sussex Record Office where these letters (and thousands of other interesting documents) live. You probably don’t have any specific connection to East Sussex, but you can spend a merry hour or more plugging words into the search box and seeing where it takes you.

As promised, I shall be lame tonight, and even lamer tomorrow night. I’ve got an all-day seminar to go to, far away.

October 12, 2017 — 9:10 pm
Comments: 11

Enter title here

honkboy
 

Boy swallows toy horn, makes hilarious party favor sound when he inhales.

No, seriously, go watch the video. It’s ten seconds of mild amusement.

As a side note, that’s the exact sound Mapp Chicken makes when she sneezes. Cracks me up.

Yes, it’s another lazy, low-effort post from Weasel, and it’ll only get worse this week. I have a lecture to go to tomorrow night, and an all day work-related field trip on Friday. I’m dreading both more than I can say.

Oh, I’ll undoubtedly enjoy myself, but it is in my nature to dread unusual activities. I don’t think people realize what a debilitating handicap it is to be temperamentally low energy and bone idle.

I shoulda been aristocracy. Or one of those maiden aunties who took to her bed with a chill and never got out again.

Perhaps I’ll apply for benefits.
 

 

October 11, 2017 — 9:25 pm
Comments: 12

Cats! Sitting like people!

catsit

reddit

Not my photo. Not my cat. There’s more!

I’ve seen the quote at right differently worded and differently sourced, but I love it.

Anyhoo, I need some time tonight in what we call the “little weasel’s room”. Some arty friends may be putting together a group painting show in a few months, and I have to see if I have anything for it.

Well, no. I lie. I know what I’ve got. I’ve got nothing ready to go. But I need to shuffle through my sketches and see what I’ve got going on for ideas.

You might think to yourself, “ideas? Geez, lady, you paint chickens. What ideas?”

Well, that’s just the sort of ignorant thing I expect to hear from someone who doesn’t paint chickens, to be honest.

October 10, 2017 — 8:49 pm
Comments: 17

Bye, Roundy

poundcoin

Six days. That’s how far I made it into Inktober. See, there was somewhere we had to be Friday and after that…screw it. Now you know why I’m a shitposter on the internet and not a famous artiste.

So. Anyhoo. They’re comin’ for the pound coin. Well, they’re phasing out the old “round pound” in favor of a new, harder-to-manufacture coin.

The old one was super easy to counterfeit. They think there might have been 30 million fakes in circulation, around 3% of the total.

The new one is twelve-sided, bi-metal and has a ‘hologram’ – faint ridges in the metal that spell out the £ symbol when viewed from a certain angle. They are said to be unfakable.

They, of course, have been faked already. Because, you know, you don’t need to reproduce that super-fancy hologram for a slug to pass painlessly into circulation. Still, it is harder.

In theory, shopkeepers will stop accepting them in a week. In practice, I’m still getting them in my change and lots of people think the deadline will mostly be ignored. Still, if you’ve got some coins lying around from your last trip to Old Blighty, you might want to dash over and spend ’em right quick.

October 9, 2017 — 9:25 pm
Comments: 11

Dead Pool Round 103: Inktober Edition

inktober05Tonycc wins the dick with Tom Petty, using Carl’s gambit.

Y’all have figured out Carl’s strategy, yes? He keeps his powder dry and doesn’t make a pick when the Pool launches.

Then, if he’s lucky, the news will announce an unpicked celebrity has fallen deathly ill. If said celebrity takes a measurable amount of time to die, he swoops in and makes the pick and viola.

It usually fails, but he stands a statistically better chance than a random pick. Hence Carl is the dickwinningest of participants.

As an encourager of weaselly strategies, I approve.

It would be a boring old Dead Pool if everyone held off, but it won’t happen. The strategy will only support a very few people until it becomes a merry snipefest, like the last ten seconds of an eBay steal.

Right, now that I’ve ruined Carl’s fun, we can begin:

0. Rule Zero (AKA Steve’s Rule): your pick has to be living when picked. Also, nobody whose execution date is circled on the calendar. Also, please don’t kill anybody. Plus (Pupster’s Rule) no picking someone who’s only famous for being the oldest person alive.

1. Pick a celebrity. Any celebrity — though I reserve the right to nix picks I never heard of (I don’t generally follow the Dead Pool threads carefully, so if you’re unsure of your pick, call it to my attention).

2. We start from scratch every time. No matter who you had last time, or who you may have called between rounds, you have to turn up on this very thread and stake your claim.

3. Poaching and other dirty tricks positively encouraged.

4. Your first choice sticks. Don’t just blurt something out, m’kay? Also, make sure you have a correct spelling of your choice somewhere in your comment. These threads get longish and I use search to figure out if we have a winner.

5. It’s up to you to search the thread and make sure your choice is unique. I’m waayyyy too lazy to catch the dupes. Popular picks go fast.

6. The pool stays open until somebody on the list dies. Feel free to jump in any time. Noobs, strangers, drive-bys and one-comment-wonders — all are welcome.

7. If you want your fabulous prize, you have to entrust me with a mailing address. If you’ve won before, send me your address again. I don’t keep good records.

8. The new DeadPool will begin 6pm WBT (Weasel’s Blog Time) the Friday after the last round is concluded.

The winner, if the winner chooses to entrust me with a mailing address, will receive an Official Certificate of Dick Winning and a small original drawing on paper suffused with elephant shit particles. Because I’m fresh out of fairy shit particles.

October 6, 2017 — 6:00 pm
Comments: 102

Day 4

inktober04

I was short of time on Day 4, so I did a tiny Geralt of Rivia fanart (dude from the Witcher III game). Even though it’s very small, it still took considerable time to prep and put together, which is why I doubt I’ll make it to 31.

My mother trained in portraiture, and she was very good at it. I would love to have followed, but I cannot capture a likeness to save my immortal soul.

That’s a whole separate skill, quite apart from painting ability. I have a friend who is a not very good painter, but you look at her paintings and know who you’re looking at. Me, the most common reaction to my portraits is, “that’s a lovely picture of somebody, but it sure ain’t me.”

Here I demonstrate that I cannot reproduce an accurate likeness of a comic character with white hair, yellow slitty cat eyes and a huge scar. That’s just how good I am.

See you back here tomorrow for Dead Pool Round 103!

October 5, 2017 — 7:06 pm
Comments: 18

…and three…

inktober03

And on Day Three, Charlotte. About whom, update.

The wound on her head healed beautifully, or so I thought. But a week or so ago, I noticed it had opened and within a couple of days…icky abscess.

The vet dealt with it, but left an open hole to let it air. It looks like a gunshot wound.

So I’ve been giving her an antibiotic pill and washing her head with salt water. Twice a day. Fun! Tomorrow we go back for a followup appointment, but I gotta continue this regime until Sunday.

Charlotte is a hissy, growly cat…thank goodness she had all her teeth removed years ago.

p.s. Oh, shoot — I forgot the best bit! The vet also turned up a couple of harvest mites in Charlotte’s ear. That’s when I learned, that little pouch at the base of a cat’s ear? It’s called Henry’s pocket. No, I haven’t been able to find out who Henry was, and they aren’t really sure what the pocket is for. Possibly to absorb lower frequency sound so the cat can better hear the high frequency ones. Like squeaky mice.

p.p.s. I declare tonycc the winner of the Dead Pool. He picked Tom Petty while he was at death’s door, but still breathin’. Tom Petty, that is. Fair’s fair. Meet you all back here Friday, 6WBT for Dead Pool Round 103.

October 4, 2017 — 6:34 pm
Comments: 18