Thursday, May 31, 2007

Makes you feel kinda humble somehow....

Have you ever tried to use MS Paint to do anything constructive? (that's the bog-basic 'drawing' package hidden away in the Accessories menu in I can do boxes in primary colours, possibly a bit of text in Times New Roman....any colour as long as it's black).....if so watch this and weep!
PS "Original drawing time 2hrs 30mins"....maybe Leonardo will be joining us!

Finding their inner goddess

Circa 1909....from Shorpy....the 100 year old blog
(Tell you what........'Mrs 2nd from left' looks as if she's only there because she was forced, either that or she swallowed a wasp!)
You have to ask yourself if this was the sort of thing that happened as a matter of course in American libraries a century ago.....and was it even legal?
Click on the image to revel in the full glory of the moment

Toys from the 70's

I suspect Richard and John secretly lusted after some of these!

Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Another point-and-click game

This one I haven't really tried.....but the graphics look nice!

Ouch! for the ladies

My legs are crossed and eyes watering at the very thought!

My 'source' had this to say......
"I'm a registered member of the male gender, so I can't truly empathize with the woman who followed this ad's instructions, but I can surely sympathize with them. I'm about to swoon, is what's about to happen. If these poor women didn't want a spectral doppelganger to sabotage their relationships, they were supposed to use a liquid that was a "concentrated germ-killer," but which was also supposedly wouldn't "harm delicate tissue." Which is why I always gargle with Paraquat and use battery acid to keep my eyes moist."

via Do What Now

The birth of Snap, Crackle and Pop

Monday, May 28, 2007

Sunday, May 27, 2007

Molecular gastronomy comes to the Lakes

"The white block was an impossibly light, and yet completely sturdy marscapone foam, topped with salmon roe, on a bed of parsley puree. The pink powder was grated frozen tuna, which reminded me of freeze dried astronaut food. The white puree was grapefruit foam, with passion fruit seeds. This was a riot of contrasting textures, with absolutely surprising complementary flavours."

A review of just one of the 24 courses on the 'Underground Menu'....available at L'Enclume, Cartmel
Check out the whole meal at L'Enclume in pictures and words
When I checked the restaurants website to find out how much the meal would set you back it was "price on application" that told me all I needed to know really......maybe when I win the lottery then!

Chris, Nick and I sampled a similar sort of menu at a restaurant directly under the flightpath at Nimes airport a couple of years was quite an experience!

Friday, May 25, 2007

Parting shot for tonight

This ones for Lizzi.....a rat apparently spaced out on methsAnyone not targeted I'll get you next time!!

Inspiration for those of you who labour over lunchboxes...

Just watch the pretty pictures (click on any image that particularly takes your fancy for details of the contents, click on the thumbnail image to return to the slideshow) then check out the fridge! I did a double take on one image, it looked like raw liver in the top left-hand box......turned out it was chocolate pudding. Haven't checked out the one that looks like raw chicken's over to you gang!!!

Amazing but true....there's a thriving community of people out there that take daily photos of what they're packing in their lunchboxes.....this is just the tip of the iceburg! And just in case you lust after a trendy number like the one shown you can get one here. For the moment I'm sticking to my trusty faux tupperware, it has a certain retro charm!

Now one for John....

I've posted a mournful blues number called "Dissertation Blues", featuring a deep-down and dirty kazoo backing track, in the boxfiles (click on the filename to play) to prove you're not alone in these times of tribulation. The end is nigh me dear!!

Now I feel guilty..... by way of an apology here's some silly cats antics set to music to make it all better!

Thought I'd better put something on for Anne....

But she's probably not going to thank me for it! I came across this rather unfortunate photo of her I initially assumed he was done up in a bad slaphead wig for a theatrical appearance, but apparently not. This was a promo shot for him reopening a theatre in Northampton last year following a refurbishment (full story here) that'll be the theatre, not Mr Essex then?

Indian Thriller

Compare and contrast.....I'm not sure which is the scariest!

Oh no, silly me.......I nearly forgot to include the Lego version!

Nice sense of humour!

The artist's "Mission Statement" being.....

"To produce a low down, second hand, third rate, piss poor qualitly, shameful, shower of shoddy sketches. This shall be Plutos the Bubbleman's 'World according to....' "

You can find more at the "Plutos the Bubbleman's....." blog

Another couple of additions to the blog

You may notice a little envelope added to the end of each's a handy way of sending an email link to the post to your friends (or enemies!) should you feel the urge
I've also added an interactive sudoku puzzle on the right hand side below the BoxFiles for fellow addicts.....enjoy!

Reparador de bicicletas Man

Learn some essential Spanish!

The future of transport

Things to note.....
1 you have to wonder why they use an illustration instead of a photo for this contraption in watery mode of use
2 that pipe clenched purposefully between manly lips
3 the immaculate suit and homburg
4 the fact that those wellies wouldn't do a whole lot of good given the noticeable lack of a front wheel splashguard

Only the French, huh?

Link to NH Wines added

I've added a link to Nicks new venture into the "Drink" section of the Links at the right hand side of the blog. Not a lot of content as yet but that'll no doubt be remedied soon?

From a technical (web design) point of view I hope they're not paying too much.....but then I'm hypercritical! If I put my money where my mouth was I'd do a complete redesign, wouldn't I? But one issue with the website cries out to be mentioned....accessibility, as in allowing for red/green colour blindness. I did an online simulation of the banner image at VisCheck and this is what it would probably look like to wor John.....
....hmmmm, not exactly readable is it? If it wasn't for that slight white drop shadow round the lettering it would just be a muddy mess and definitely not the sort of corporate image I'd want at the top of MY website. By the way, 1 in 10 men suffer from partial to complete colour blindness.....that's a sizeable proportion of the wine buying public!

OK, "Holier than thou" lecture over!, can someone help me down off this high horse.......please?

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Todays retro goodness

Funny how the rest of the family managed to miss the splinters! Click on the image to enbiggify to readable proportions.

The life of a pro blogger.....

I THINK this is a spoof!

Monday, May 21, 2007

A date for your diary

So it's kinda convenient we've bumped the end-of-term party forwards to the 21st July!! Anne, John and I did the Saturday concert at Tynemouth Castle last year...(and despite the fact that John was sporting a plaster cast and didn't do a whole lot of dancing in the aisles) it was well worth the entry fee. Anyone up for a repeat visit this year (packing a picnic and possibly umbrellas of course!) should check out the following......

Details of the concert at Tynemouth Castle on the 14th July

The Legendary Mory Kante
Mory Kante was the first African artist to sell over a million singles and his number one hit 'Yeke Yeke' remains the most successful African song of all time. Hailing from Guinea in West Africa, Mory is one of the very few African singers to have a hit record in Europe. His live show will see eleven people performing on stage as he showcases his latest album and the songs that have given him great success and respect over the years. In the stunning setting of Tynemouth Priory, the acoustic sounds of Mory Kante will make this an atmospheric night to remember.

The Alex Wilson Salsa Orchestra
Alex Wilson's style of salsa will definitely grab your attention as he along with his 12-piece Salsa Orchestra belts out the tunes to get you moving.

Boys of the Lough
This band have completed over 60 tours of the USA and received 2 Grammy nominations for their work. They perform traditional Celtic music using the fiddle, flute, accordion and pipes to great effect. Hugely respected on both sides of the Atlantic, Boys of the Lough, have made over 20 recordings and have a wealth of work to choose from when they open the show at the Mouth of the Tyne evening concert.

General Details
Tynemouth Priory and Castle, Saturday 14 July 2007
6pm - 10pm
Doors Open: 5pm.
Seating: Picnic style - attendees should bring their own seating.
Tickets: Adults: £20. Children 4+/OAP/Ease Card/Students/Disabled/Carers: £18. Children 0-3 years: free.

Check out the music styles on offer here:
Mory Kante
Alex Wilson Salsa Orchestra
Boys of the Lough

Bex's delicious cod recipe find

I was on the receiving end of this one last Friday night....Bex probably won't think to post it so I'll do the honours....recipe enough for 4

675g/1lb 8oz cod fillet, 3cm/1¼in thick
85g/3oz white breadcrumbs, soft or slightly stale
3 tbsp parsley, finely chopped
2 cloves garlic, crushed
finely grated zest ½ lemon
60g/2¼oz butter, melted
a squeeze of lemon juice
salt and pepper
lemon wedges, to serve

1. Season the cod with salt and pepper to taste.
2. Mix the breadcrumbs with the parsley, garlic, lemon zest, salt and pepper, then add butter and lemon juice. Mix thoroughly with your fingers.
3. Place the cod in a shallow, ovenproof dish and press the buttered crumbs firmly onto the cod to form an even crust. Bake at 220C/425F/Gas 7 for 20-25 minutes until the crust is browned and the fish just cooked through.
Serve immediately.

We had it with potato salad and peas, it was.......


Hotstuff wearing sexy knickers

What can you say.....the age of variety is long dead?

Someone has too much time on their hands....

Hours and hours in the making, the whole procedure detailed here

Tuesday, May 15, 2007

Somebody remind me.... drone on about Amber Films sometime. I've just watched (for the nth time) 'By Fading Light' after spotting a snippet from same on YouTube. All about fishing (and the death of the industry) from North Shields....emotive, and entertaining stuff!

And I've just found this.....

and because it's shot in Newcastle and Whitley Bay (looks like it might have been done by Northumbria film students) you're honour-bound to watch it! It's called the 28 Days Later project and it's in two parts.....



Whitley Bay in the 20's

Round about the time when Ma was doing the annual Sunday School Trip from Haltwhistle?

Something that never quite got off the drawing board

Monday, May 14, 2007

Another nice online game....or two

This was the first online 'point and click' game I ever still hasn't lost it's charm
Click here to play Samorost 1
Click here to play Samorost 2
For those of you who've never played a 'point and click' the instructions are simple....move your mouse around the screen until the cursor changes to a hand, click and see what happens, solve the puzzles to get to the next level. Both of these games have maybe 5 levels at most....just right for a coffee break. Lots more if anyone gets the bug!

Next weekends DIY project.....

....that's if they still make wooden coathangers of course! (But doesn't that happy, smiling, curly-haired moppet look a bit like Lizzi?)

Test slideshow from Webshots

The French version of 'the story of the film' as a test to see what happens

L’homme de mes rĂªves

LATER....It seems to work. If you want to view a higher resolution picture you can click on it in the slideshow to take you to the original file at webshots or click on the link directly below the slideshow window to take you to the complete gallery of images.

Wednesday, May 09, 2007

Tynemouth Toy Museum write-up

I found this recent write-up of 'The Childhood Memories Toy Museum' today....and there's lots more 'nothing happening much' visitors attractions here including the Keswick Pencil Museum if you're that way inclined. Now I think the last time I was there was when Daizy would have been about 3....and it looks like they might have upgraded the floor surface from basic concrete (with puddles) since then, and maybe better lighting too!

"Childhood doesn’t belong in a museum - it’s noisy and fun, not quiet and organised. When you walk into the barn-like space that is Childhood Memories Toy Museum the overall effect is of a chaotic bedroom that’s had a last minute tidy up for visitors. The name really fits, as soon as you come in the door it’s like being a kid again, looking at a whole heap of exciting things and wondering what to play with first.

There’s obviously been an attempt to organise the huge number of toys on show. There are neat displays showing an impressive array of toy guns, robots, doll’s house furniture, Sooty & Sweep, ventriloquist’s dummies, Sindy dolls, Mr (and Mrs) Potato Heads, it goes on and on. But outside these collections toys spill everywhere. Bizarre board games such as On The Buses and I only arsked: The Bernard Breslaw Game balance on the display cases, and anything that can hang dangles from the ceiling.

In the middle of the floor large dolls and cuddly toys of all ages are corralled inside miniature vehicles. Some of the old ones would give you nightmares, their glass eyes staring at you in the dark. A teddy sits in a Sinclair C5, not actually a toy car even though it looks like one. And everything is equal here. Although many of the exhibits are highly collectable there’s no indication that that makes them more important. Classic toys are on show alongside tiny disposable things and famous names jostle with others that have been long forgotten. That makes sense – kids don’t discriminate either.

As you peruse the collection a soundtrack of wartime hits give it a jolly air. Above the music there are cries of “Oooh. I used to have this!” or “I always wanted one of these”. As most of the toys are from the 1970s and earlier they will appeal to big kids of 30+ but so many familiar faces have endured or come back round little kids can also find favourites like Barbie, Batman, Action Man and Thunderbirds. Despite the Playstation generation childhood hasn’t really changed that much.

Childhood Memories Toy Museum can be found at Palace Building, Grand Parade, Tynemouth, North Shields, Tyne and Wear, NE30 4JH. It has been there for 16 years, starting in smaller premises in Whitley Bay. When not scouting for toys the owners also run a dolls' hospital. There is a small admission charge but it is a small price to pay for the joy of Childhood Memories."

The attack of the killer tortoise

Feisty little bugger!

Monday, May 07, 2007

Tynemouth Plaza Fire 1996

So call me a softie, but I actually shed a little tear when I watched this....fond memories of Saturday night dances in the mid to late 60's might have had something to do with it, either that or the half bottle of chewy bank holiday red I've downed!

The end (as in Eurovision) is nigh.....

This is for Daizy, possibly even Sarah...but definitely a sad girlies evening is officially on the cards! But I know you want to join in on the dance moves on Saturday night....c'mon, get real, of course you do!
Blue Peter shows you how here
And the whole fantabadozy routine is here (repost)
PS.....those costumes might be getting a bit whiffy by now, and, hang on, would they be egg stains?....let's stay upwind!

Someone invent a phone version for cold callers purleeese!

Middle Ages Tech Support

It's in Norwegian, with subtitles.....and it's STILL funny!

Sunday, May 06, 2007

Oooer....a scary lady invades your dreams!

Subliminal messages for the young from the late 50's/early 60's. Apparently you were supposed to play it to your kids as they went to sleep.....I'm not convinced! I'm adding the audio file to the box files (just click on the file to listen, BUT NOT WITH THE LIGHTS OUT!) But in case anyone wants to download it and try it out as a loop on their progeny (and, let's face it, you know who you are!) click here to link to the original post at the 365 day project's the posting for 6th May

The 100th post....

Who would have thought it.....we've managed 100 posts!

Think I'm going to try this on Moocah.....if I can catch him!

Saturday, May 05, 2007

Playing games

Here's a nice little "point and click" game. Turn the sound on.

Friday, May 04, 2007

Advance notice....

.....of a "nearly the end of term party" on Saturday 14th July (open to negotiation to fit in with everyones busy social calendars though!) Becks and I were having a general gripe about final assignments and exams last week....when I came off the phone I did a quick calculation and realised that of the immediate family of 18, no less than 11 of us are involved in the seasonal nature of the education business in one way or another. In one way this could be considered to be just plain another it's a damned good excuse for a party

2001....The short version

Time a bit short but you fancy watching a film? 2001, A Space Odyssy (in just over 5 minutes) might fit the bill!

Fashion ain't what it used to be.....

Click here to play a video showing some groovy Carnaby St fashions from the 60's. Lots more vintage video at The Smoking Gun
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