New York baby delivered after car crash kills parents - precocoius new-born commits patricide!
Shark kills number 100 million annually. That’s one murderous shark!
Keep them coming BBC – they work to make me read the full news article.
New York baby delivered after car crash kills parents - precocoius new-born commits patricide!
Shark kills number 100 million annually. That’s one murderous shark!
Keep them coming BBC – they work to make me read the full news article.
Once again, for the 3rd time, Reading town’s bid to become a city has failed. Reading town suffers from city appraisal anxiety
I rather like living in such a well-endowed town, though many townsfolk seem to have a chip on their shoulder about Reading repeatedly not being made a city. Big town even sounds good like ‘Big heart’ or ‘Big ted‘
According to the BBC’s description of the recent bid Reading town was a bookies favourite to win city status. Our local ‘civic leaders’ believe that attaning city status will provide Reading town with ” huge economic, cultural and social benefits to the area, as well as a jobs boost.”
I wonder what has changed for the people in the towns that were promoted to cities for the Millenium and in 2002? Have Brighton and Hove, Wolverhampton, Inverness, Preston and Newport all experienced HUGE cultural, social and economic growth since achieving city status?
top of the stairs
A tall slim windows sits at the top of the Wendy House staricase of doom. In February it drenches the hallway in the glow of snowcloud light. Warmly – double-glazed. Privately – not overlooked by other houses. Nakedly – without dressings of any kind. A few coloured glass bowls sit on the low sill. On sunny days the glassware sparkles. I contemplate this window several times a day, when I climb the wooden hill to Bedfordshire
The Danish Drama series’ (The Killing, Borgen) and mumsie’s memories of her Danish friend’s home have inspired me. I’m planning to dress the window with some glass shelves to hold trailing plants and more sparkling coloured glass ornaments
I’ve used Paint to mock-up what different placements might look-like from the perspective of someone, probably me, climbing the staircase of doom
Which option do you think works best ?:
Just incase you thought eveything in the Cupboard was running smoothly, here is error of the day “Apple Software Update has stopped working”. This is how the story unfolded
Avoid using any Apple products or services because they:
Captured by BBC evil alliance
Unfortunately, when I started wanting to use BBC’s iplayer the only way to view the programs that my Licence had helped fund was to use Apple’s quicktime. Furious that the BBC chose to align with a company’s product rather than an industry standard. Darn, effectively the BBC was saying download Apple’s quick time or eff off.
For a while I managed without the BBC iplayer and just fumed until the lure of quality drama on-demand got the better of me. I installed Quicktime and lost a little of my self-esteem in the process.
When I buy or use Microsoft services, part of their profit goes to causes I support. Microsoft products may not be beautiful to look at and they may be error ridden but they genuinely show social values that I respect. They can have my money and time before Apple anyday because of how they spend my commitment
BBC Breakfast news anchor man said:
“Like Americans, they carry their business cards with them everywhere“
Is ‘carrying business cards’ a euphemism for something like
This can be in an adjacent room. In the ‘Love letter’ we can see a dull wall in the foreground to the left and linens on the shelves to the right – as if we, the viewers, are in the servants closet wathcing the mistress of the house pass a letter to a servant
The main action is in the centre of the painting, a well dressed lady taking a moment from playing her lute to pass a letter to a less well dressed lady, pressumably a servant. Both women are sunlit from the left hand side. Even though they are looking at each-other Vermeer has contrived a natural pose that bathes both their faces in sunlight
The Killing II regularly uses this technique. A mother and child talk while the viewer watches from floor level in the hallway. Nearly half the frame is taken-up by the plain dark hallway wall on the right
Unlike Vermeer paintings, the light source is in view. It is low and to the left of the frame. Like Vermeer the reflection adds brightness and focus to the picture. The reflected light on the floor traces a line to us, the viewers
To get to this view the camera has slowly moved along the hallway until it revealed the doorway, the people, then the light source. Unlike Vermeer, cinematographers have the additional dimension of time (movement) to play with. The Killing II cinematographers appear to have carefully considered how we move from one place to another, how people, place and meaning are unravelled and intertwined visually
The same technique is used in this mortuary scene. We, the viewer, are in the adjacent room. We can see the door in the forground to the left. Comparing with high quality programmes like CSI and NCIS, tradtional cinematography – their approaches focus on the faces of the people in the room. We watch the reactions of the people in the room, watch them ask questions, see close-ups of relevant body parts. These traditional approaches place the viewer in the room – a participant in the post-mortem
In The Killing II we are a viewer at a distance. We watch everyone’s body language, listen to the conversation while staying slightly outside… a voyeur…
The cinematography for the original Danish TV drama ‘Forbrydelsen II’ (‘The Killing II’) is wonderfully atmospheric. The imagery reminds me of paintings by the 17th century Dutch master artists Johannes Vermeer and Pieter de Hooch. This is the first of several scribbles exploring the masters’ possible influence
The viewer of Vermeer’s paintings often has the eyeline of a person crouching, 10 or so feet from the main subject. Thier eyes are about 3 foot above floor. ‘The Killing II’ often places the viewer in the same position, especially when the main players are seated. This positioning of the viewer was unusual in 17 century paintings and it’s unusual in 21st century TV cinematography. I find the effect pleasing and engaging, as-if I am in the room but not so close to intrude on the main conversation
The use of reflected light, above on the table, is also striking and atmospheric
In Johannes Vermeer’s ‘A lady writing a letter’ the light source is outside the painting to the left, the primary light within the painting comes from reflected light on her face, dress and forearms
Vermeer’s paintings are typically lit from a source outside of view, to the left of the painting. ‘The Killing II’ shows a similar preference for low light from the left hand side. Light within the frame is balanced by using reflection of walls, faces and objects. In this still from ‘The Killing II’ the room is lightened by reflection from a white table, water bottles, drinking glasses and the face of the woman who looks towards the light source
I wonder who had the insight to set this visual direction and stick with it – Producer? Cinematographer, a collaboration? Sadly, the BBC4 website for ‘The Killing II’ doesn’t provide this kind of background information
less than 2 weeks after arriving in the USA I’m in a project meeting with 10 Americans mostly wearing the pants (UK = shorts) of the khaki cargo variety
programme manager: wendy, can we get a time on that deliverable?
wendy: a fortnight
more silence, I have no idea what’s happening
team leader: did you say 4 days?
wendy: errrr, no! a bit longer, more like 2 weeks or 10 days if my weekend goes for a burton
programme manager: lets touch base after the meeting
This prompted much giggling from the team. I knew they wouldn’t understand ‘go for a burton’, I hadn’t anticipated that they also wouldn’t understand ‘bit’. Most British English speakers understand American English, many American English speakers do not understand quirks of British English.
I picked up and started using American English phrases while mostly maintaining my British accent. The Hispanic American staff in the canteen couldn’t understand my accent unless I used an American pronunciation. I started imitating American English to get tomatoes with my burger. Thinking about how to pronounce my vowels made my fake American accent delivery rather slow. Amused people in the canteen line (UK = Queue) commented that I sounded like a Texan, because of my drawl.
Since returning to England I have maintained many Americanisms, they are understood.
BBC Radio 2 described the shooting of two British students in Sarasota Florida as happening Several miles from a recognised tourist area in a Downmaket residential area where it is very unusual to find tourists
Apart from an exta 8 syllables what are the main differences between Downmarket residential area and Ghetto? Why do you think the BBC chose the longer phrase?
After another reboot and windows update
I was priviliged to again see the black screen of file verification. Apparantly my usn journal has been verified. Phew. Not that I needed to know about this. I’d rather they showed me a video of kitties playing, or potters potting, or even mentioned they are sorry for interrupting my usage.
Unfortunately the chameleon circuit broke when the TARDIS was disguised as a 1950′s London blue Police box. They are essentially a mini police station for use by Police people, and members of the public can use them to (phone) call the police. Police boxes were first used in Albany NY (1877) soon after the telephone was invented! The first boxes in Britain were placed in Glasgow (1891).
By the time I was old enough to visit London (1970s) the London police boxes had long since been removed.
This green police box is alive today, in Sheffield!
Seeing this Box kept me happy for weeks, I hope the photograph does something pleasing for you too …
BBC radio 4 reported that many houses were inundated with water in the Queensland floods. The reporter went on to explain that the water contained snakes and crocodiles, but that the local residents were taking this in their stride. The image of Australians pragmatically striding through crocodile infested water was an entertaining image of a devastating event.
During the BBC Proms the family House made a trip to see the Ulster Symphony Orchestra perform the Karelia suite in prom 68. It was very touching to see mum and dad, a Karelian, look so happy. Dad once again reminded me that he has a signed photograph of Colonel Mannerheim that was given to his mum.
Sibelius wrote Finlandia
Recently the BBC reported that Reading town would be the victim of a
biting northeasterly wind
Unlike the Newcastle locals, the Reading town locals can be seen shivering at the Bus stops wearing tooth-proof clothing.
Lord Hutton’s use of the English language when interviewed on radio 4 this morning was most entertaining. I won’t provide English translations unless requested because the actual meanings were a tad more dull than
I first heard of the Park Hill estate during my undergraduate environmental psychology classes in 1986. The architect’s, Ivor Smith and Jack Lynn’s, vision for a high rise estate to replace sprawling slums in the northern English city of Sheffield with “Streets in the Sky”. Streets in the sky would recreate the strengths of the communities which had flourished in the back to back slums and provide improved living conditions at a bargain price. Taking people out of small, damp, Victorian terraces where kids played in the streets and giving them streets in the sky with views over the city, inside toilets, covered walkways, balcony’s where children could play and neighbours could chat, with room for attractive open park land around the high rise buildings. Smith and Lynn’s designs were heavily influenced by Le Corbuiser’s Breton Brut as evident in his Marseilles Unité d’Habitation. Breton Brut became known in Britain as ‘Brutalism’, simple functional form. They wanted to build in a sense of neighbourliness into these functional spaces.
These changes were intended to improve the standard of living for people now living in a slum area locally know as ‘Little Chicago’ in the gangster era. The Park Hill estate was completed in 1961 with 995 flats that could house over two thousand people overlooking Sheffield city centre. Front doors opened to a 12 ft wide balcony, a street, that runs right across the estate over bridges between buildings. Milk floats could trundle from door to door along streets named the same asthose in the original slums they replaced. People that were neighbours in the slums were rehoused next to each other.
Worthy, admirable intentions
When built, the social ideal didn’t happen
The estate soon became known as Sheffield’s San Quentin. The failure of the original design vision has been blamed on many things including
It’s difficult to tell from the publicity what is being changed to make the project work as a successful place to live this time. A recent BBC TV programme about the renovation focussed on English heritage’s aesthetic and structural requirements for preservation not mentioning any changes to the space aimed at improving the occupants expereince of living there. The programme made the vision appear less social that the original. So what will have changed since it first opened? It looks like the renovation will be
The UK’s National Bullying Helpline (Charity) cited number 10 Downing Street as being a place where the bullying of 4 staff members happened. Who did it? The main assumption appears to have been that the Prime Minister is a bully.
The reaction of members of the labour party to the accusation of bullying at 10 downing street probably demonstrates something of British attitudes toward bullying. I’m not impressed. These are the responses I’ve heard so far.
The BBC is one of the few sources that mentions Downing Street’s processes for dealing with bullying, calling it “rigorous” but providing no evidence of the process or rigor.
I’ve set up an anti-bullying hotline for the fluffballs but they still persist, Sampo ambushes Matrix on her way to the food bowl and Matrix pushes Sampo out of all the best sleepy spots. My rigorous processes have failed to ameliorate the problem.
animadversions is not a creative pastiche of
Animadversions is used by the Foriegn Office (FO) to describe the contents of the last despatch (message) by the British Ambassador to Oslo in 1975, Ralph Selby. For Ralph, being a diplomat was a family business, his father and wife’s grandfather were ambassadors. The style of expression within the despatch is rather fun, I particularly liked this phrase
‘I agree with the gentleman who’s signature resembles a trombone’
In honour of this outstanding phrase I am considering changing my signature to resemble a swan.
Ralph’s animadversions included
The UK prime minister apologises to the now deceased Alan Turing for the government removing his security clearance and hence his job when Alan was found guilty of being gay. Reprogramming involved chemical castration, Alan committed suicide.
This morning BBC Radio 4 appeared to focus on the
September 11th 2001 was mentioned, a brief comment on the lack of progress in redeveloping the site of the former Twin Towers.
Local councils are phasing out the use of apostrophes because they are complicated, confusing (to GPS units), messy and generate too many complaints.
The founder of the apostrophy protection society is quite upset. He mentiones that ‘this could be the first step towards linguistic anarchy’ . I wonder whether he knows about text messaging?
The colonies find this a bit amusing. 3 News (New Zealand) wittily reports that: ”the Queen’s English is now the Queens English. England’s second-largest city has decided to drop apostrophes from all its street signs, saying they are confusing and old-fashioned. But some purists are downright possessive about the punctuation mark.”
Imagine a Monty Python sketch with the team in suits and ties passionately discussing the value of the apostrophy in avoiding linguistic anarchy. Lots of arm and leg waving, diagrams and charts. Terry Jones demonstrating what total linguistic anarchy sounds like…. …and its impact on your sense of place… which probably involves falling over.
Meanwhile the Times reports that councils are publishing crib sheets to help their staff work-out where to put apostrophes for the rare occassions when they are allowed.
In my day the BBC used a collection of strangely engaging short media clips to entertain viewers during program interruption, called ‘interludes’, accompanied by classical music. These media clips included watching a potter potting, a spinner spinning (wool, not exercise) and the slightly more cute kitten-playing:
after putting on the kettle for my morning cup of tea, much as I always do, I turned the TV on to the BBC Breakfast news, much as I always do. The words below are approximate just the gist because I don’t remember the details:
My attention is grabbed, Indeed Lady Diana’s death was memorable for me:
8am Sunday morning, tent taken down and packed in the boot of the car, tired and sad, I started driving from the Yorkshire Dales to Portsmouth via London with only a radio for company. All the BBC radio channels played a short loop of music and provided no other news than a regular announcement of Lady Diana’s death. After a couple of hours, hoping the loop would stop, I turned the radio off and drove through the mist and rain accompanied only by the noise of my own sad thoughts. The BBC TV followed a similar format:
With no intended disrespect, I suspect that I’ll forget all the uniqueness of the moment that I head Michael Jackson had died.
On a sunny April weekend post-youngster Brits launch into the highly risky business of sculpting their garden. This weekend I fell victim to the under-publicised gardening health hazards. Not a muscle problem from lifting, digging and carrying, or falling over a garden ornament, but a little arm-blush reaction to a local ant.
Kids, beware the garden, its a jungle out there
skippy: Here’s the bus, three busses at once, OooooOOOOoo HaHaha
I walked toward the first double decker
skippy: WRONG! we want the single decker, Hahahahaha
Wendy: Oh (signifying disappointment at not getting the double decker)
Skippy is on the bus and has placed himself in the centre of the back row of 5 seats by the time I’ve joined the line and paid for a ticket. I look down the bus too see him at the end of the isle, he shows me all of his teeth and claps his hands, then raises one hand and waves it at me, as if I might be leaving, while laughing. I show him my recently cleaned teeth and run down the bus to take a seat next to him. We chat loudly during the journey. I laugh everytime Skippy talks because his enthusiasm and volume is brillliant. He is clearly happy to be with his little sister and I with him.
Skippy is looking forward to the Easter special Dr. Who episode, he tells me about it. I posit that maybe this bus is a TARDIS and one of the passengers is a time lord disguised as a local, the conversation deteriorates from here on.
Family House enjoyed breakfast with the live BBC coverage of the boys in the Melbourne F1 race:
It’s not over yet (lap 30 of 58)
Fisichella has missed his box, Fisichella has previous for missing the box
he’s just had a moment
we’ve lost a Renault
The Maclaren has clearly got the grunt, it just hasn’t got the grip
he’s just popped a sensible pill
It’s a living thing an F1 race
Lots of excitement was consumed and Tea spilt. The outstanding performance by the former Honda Formula 1 racing team, beautifully demonstrate how an asset sold-off by a retrenching multinational company (Honda) can quickly turn their product into an inspiration following a management buyout. But then the shine was taken off the win by the subsequent announcement of substantial redundancies.
A gradual metamorphosis, not necessarily death. Scrawl and scribble can convey a message without well formed, legible words, as many a toddlers parent and their fridge postings will attest. That a message is penned is a message of significance in itself. The significance may change with time, but it will remain significant. Keys on boards can convey a clear and consistent letter form reducing the variety of messages conveyed by the personal and environmental quirks of pen-personship. My own left-handed scrawl gets worse in cold weather and when I get a tad over-excited, these things are not conveyed by the clear system of key-strokes. Pen or keys will always imply different messages and the messages with change with time. Just as the messages of ’hand made’ and ‘factory made’ have changed from the initial high value associated with the consistent quality of factory made to the subsequent high value associated with the craft-skill required for hand made.
The art of pen wielding will be maintained by people who take the care to love and use and explore it well, and I may shift from these keys to further pen a wobbly thing or two for your merry bemusement and befuddlement. Consider yourselves warned.
Not a European clothes size to denote adulthood or large children. An exam used in the English school system that was taken by 11 year old students between 1944 and 1974. It was used as a filter for to divide students stream students into entry to Grammar schools or State schools. If you failed you went into an ordinary State school rather than a Grammar school.
This BBC article provides example of questions in a self-test format: http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/magazine/7773974.stm
I went to a Comprehensive State School, formerly a Grammar school with teachers that missed the good old grammar school days. It wasn’t an ex-Secondary Modern’ state school that had traditionally educated the children that failed the 11+
The Observer, also known as The Gaurdian, reports that:
Former hostage Terry Waite stunned Women’s Institute members in Reading by telling them that dealing with their town’s traffic was worse than being held captive for almost five years, after being delayed on his way to speak to them.
Do I think Terry is exaggerating a bit at the detriment of our glorious town’s already overly maligned reputation?
The town traffic may indeed be a bit slower than the executive’s posh car, or Fiat Panda, can travel. It is, however, a reasonable, leisurely, pace for the good and even-tempered people of the town to go about their honest toil.
Even the BBC doesn’t cite Reading’s roads as main UK traffic black spots. No wonder those members of the Women’s Institute were stunned to hear such ill considered twaddle uttered from a professional public speaker and humanitarian.
Just incase there is any residual doubt amongst my readers that generally women are not considered praiseworthy, or enabled to take-on prasieworthy roles beyond those condoned by patriarchal values, the BBC reported an analysis that confirms that celebrity females are more likely to be HATED and less likely to be LOVED than celebrity males:
In a nutshell, despite years of equal opportunities, the media – and the people who watch and read – prefer the stay-at-home mother over a woman who lives her life in public, particularly one who is overtly ambitious or successful in making money. There is great satisfaction among many people in seeing them humbled
I do hope no one is terribly suprised or shocked by this result.
Excerpt from BBC article:
A woman who was seen being punched by a police officer in CCTV footage has said she is disappointed after it was confirmed he will not face charges.
Punching a female suspect (guilt undetermined) five times while the suspect is on the floor after having fallen down a flight of stairs, while colleagues watch, is legally acceptable according to the ‘Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC)’ who stated that the police officer being investigated used
“justified and proportionate force”
Watch the BBC video footage which includes a brief explanation of legitimate subdue techniques that include punching. I had naively believed that the Police are trained to act in concert to restrain suspects using a range of effective techniques prior to resorting to punching.
The BBC article is at pains to state that the victim boes not think she has been racially abused. Unsuprisingly, whether this is an act of hate against females is not raised.