Showing posts from July, 2013

Helga's Chickens

Helga's Chickens take the floor around eight thirty every night. Could anybody ask for more? Perhaps some spotty troglodyte would rather hide away and write computer code, but that's a bore and hardly likely to delight Helga's Chickens. Take the floor for instance - even if it wore a carpet of a lurid white our eyes would still be on the door around eight thirty. Every night the Paranormal's heaving. Quite a crowd prepares for what's in store and brightens as they dim the light. Could anybody ask for more than Helga and her brood? Before you rush to call her 'parasite' or breathe the appellation 'whore', perhaps some spotty troglodyte will rush to her defence and cite an evening back in '94 when he succumbed, gave up the fight and sang - O come let us adore Helga's Chickens!

measure me

and measure me where skies are blue   and life is a designer brand     and rrussian girls go how arr you and cultivate the favoured hue   preferring what they understand     and measure me where skies are blue and winter warms me through and through   like summer from another land     and rrussian girls go how arr you and have you night enough for two   to dim the bleak beyond that's planned     and measure me where skies are blue and high apartments block the view   of sand and sand and sand and sand     and rrussian girls go how arr you and how are you my darling do   you feel a hardness in your hand     and measure me where skies are blue       and rrussian girls go how arr you

The Model and the Miracle Man

I only ever performed one miracle.. and that was ten years ago. It changed two lives forever, mine and someone much more famous, though her fame was to come later. I remember it vividly; how could I not? I'd just arrived back in London from a six-month tour of duty in Saudi Arabia and was in need of three things: a bacon sandwich, a beer, and to see some women wearing less than the Saudi norm. Much less, in fact. And of course I knew of a pub that could provide all three, with knobs on. I'm telling you this to dispel any illusion that I'm setting myself up as some kind of holy guy. I'm not. I'm just another engineer who happened to work a miracle, once. So, duly sated in all departments, I'd left the pub and was walking East along Pentonville Road, enjoying the normality of a bright sunny day after the searing furnace of the Middle East. I wasn't consciously thinking of anything in particular, but there was nothing at all wrong with my world. It was good to

Predestination - Believe it or Nuts!

As good a place as any to begin Halfway through the fourteenth bar of Tárrega's 'Recuerdos da la Alhambra', Michael's 'A'-string breaks at the bridge. The sudden crack and the sharp squeak of spiral-wound silver against skin stirs not a few of the audience into rapt attention. Novelty, after all, and perhaps another's discomfiture, can more than make up for a temporary glitch in performance. Peter, realising a short break is inevitable and conscious of his pre-concert beer, excuses himself politely and negotiates the eight knees and thirty-nine toes (Ms. Jessica Armstrong had a childhood accident involving a bacon slicer) separating him from the aisle. Joe, on the scaffolding, applies himself to the rotting soffit board. Too far gone for patching and filling, this is a full replacement job. He hooks the claw-hammer under the board's lower edge and jerks the shaft sharply downwards. The decayed timber cracks and splinters. Eight hundred and seventy three

Knees, Plungers & Aliens

The old way A long time ago, I studied photography. I used a manual SLR camera, took light measurements (incident and reflected), applied filters, adjusted focus, aperture and exposure, developed my own negatives, mixed my own chemicals, did my own darkroom work and, occasionally, achieved some pretty creditable results, none of which appear on this page. I did all this because I wanted to be in complete control of the image, from inception to display. But recently, because of my traveling lifestyle, my photography is reduced to quick snapshots with a mobile phone - low quality, granular, soft, flared, shaded, blurred - but fun and immediate. And you know, I'm thoroughly enjoying it. But there's a special class of picture for which the mobile phone is second to none - the complete accident! what plungersome thing art thou? Exterminate... Exterminate... The phone rings, you fumble it out of your pocket, press a couple of keys by mistake, and click - another random picture for th

Bull-neck and the Blue Lagoon

More random photographs We can't be serious all the time. What follows is my latest selection of wholly accidental phone pictures, usually taken in the process of fumbling the phone into or out of my pocket. The descriptions probably say more about me than about the pictures, but I'll leave others to judge.   bull-neck and the blue lagoon "Without prejudice" mutters Bull-neck, apparently to himself, lost on his mission to pass through life unencumbered, even by clothes. The almost apologetic bolt from the blue makes no impression; if he so much as notices it, he gives no sign, but blunders on, looking forward and down. Always down. His early baseball cap years have taught him there is no sky, no stars. Now sure in this knowledge, he has no need to shade his eyes. There is no light. memories of a copper still The roof is long gone. The malting loft has crumbled and fallen onto the the stills below. Rats have ravaged the barley sacks and mice gleaned their leavings. Win

Big, blue and very long

bullnose mercedes truck - blue to boot I don't expect everybody to share my enthusiasm for the bullnose Mercedes, but bear with me while I explain why this one is special. It's blue. (They are nearly always orange or grey/green). It's articulated, while most of them are rigid 10-wheelers. It has a white painted exhaust stack, nothing short of an affectation. It even has some tread left on the tyres. And it was there, waiting for me. and articulated, and long