Saturday, July 19, 2008

PC problems - quiet Rest Day

I'll get the worst picture out of the way first and then deal with the others. The only reason for the very old clematis picture is that this time the colour is about accurate. When it leaves here anyway.

Taken with my Tamron at 250mm and in RAW and I must concede it made it possible to get the colour correct. In a JPEG it remained resolutely blue-ish.

Now you can actually see it Bungus you may be able to confirm Jackmanii, or of course, if anyone actually knows, please feel free to chip in. I enjoy the 'symposium' aspects of t'blog.

Picture 2 is Helen C's jolly good effort at the roof st St. Pancras. It was fun to check the metadata against the station clock and find that the clock and Helen's camera were both spot on. Us with tiny minds have to find something to faff about with !

Seriously though - a good picture Helen and f7.1 was small enough to be sharp front to rear and you were right to use ISO100 even where there wasn't much light. It is all the more crisp in consequence.

Did you rest the camera on something solid, or did you take your tripod with you ? No evidence of camera shake anyway.

As I said yesterday, I'm taken with the 'light through curtain idea' so I had a go in the office this morning. Picture 3 is the result.

This was before my PC trouble began. I wanted to install on my new machine my favourite photo-manipulation programme, from my disc. I had three determined goes and while I got close, I couldn't clinch it.

Rather than go mad I decided to enlist Reg's help and he and Maureen came late afternoon.

It was fortunate that Maureen and Y had plenty to talk about it because hours passed.

Poor Maureen's arm looks healthy enough now the 'scaffolding' has been removed. But is still swollen and looking painful, which we are assured it is. She has lots of physiotherapy type exercises to do. One of which looks remarkably like Elizabeth R's genteel wave, sideways on, from the elbow.

I think the full effect needs a state-carriage though !

It was almost a relief when Reg encountered much the same obstacles as I had. Had he sorted it in minutes I would have felt even more of an idiot.

But, due to sheer determination and perseverance, he eventually succeeded. My input to the procedures mainly involved mashing tea. I did get to click the occasional button and do the odd mouse click.

This evening we, and I'm sure other readers, watched the Hadrian programme and personally I liked the presenter Dan Snow. The programmes are to coincide with the upcoming Exhibition at The British Museum.


Jill ..... You seem to have nearly a full set of common garden birds. You don't mention blackbirds but most gardens have them around somewhere. Neither do you say anything about Robins and ours are missing this year too. I don't know if there is a reason ? We put out some mealy worms the other day and usually they love those.

Y said Harley Street was pretty dire. I think 5 minutes was enough.

Taken side by side Wendy Cope is a better poet than Jenny Joseph, but 'Purple' (quite deservedly) just sticks in the mind.

Thanks for your good wishes re Nat Trust and Powys. We are treating it as a 'heat' for the Isle of Wight holiday.

AnonymousRob ....... You are quite correct to point up the difficulties of 'casting' Bungus for the Clinic Tales. I will give it much thought. Better still would be for Bungus to suggest someone !

Glad the curry was good. Y and I must try Huthwaite because we both enjoy a good curry.

I think that, after your words and Bungus's, about present day veal, I must review my position. Veal is a very versatile raw ingredient and I have many recipes in ancient cookery books.

Bungus .... Scout's honour not to bogger about with my new PC. Mind you, perhaps the occasional tweak ..... or two .....

Does your lack of tolerance with mitre flaws refer to the episcopal variety ?

Re Henry Normal and Baby Cow productions. I think the last time Y and I saw him live was at Beeston Library in the early 80s. I think we all now have the accurate info re his involvement with Series 1 of The Royle Family.

I hope that Alex's thrash survived the rain. Here it was mostly sunshine, but showers around 5pm plus. Sandra's finger-food is so gorgeous that living on left-overs for a week would be no punishment. But you have your chewing probs to contend with.


Talking food, Y came across a very important piece the other day. Apparently while we all now use 'healthy' vegetable oils for cooking there's a problem which isn't given the prominence it deserves.

You can cook in it once and enjoy the benefits. But reheated again, after straining etc, all the polyunsaturates revert to supersaturates and you might just as well be using animal fats.

Quotation time. .............................

"Everything is vague to a degree you do not realize till you have tried to make it precise"

Bertrand Russell

Wikipedia provided the best link, as it so often does...... Marvellous creation !

I might miss a day tomorrow. It depends when we get home and how flatpackered I feel. Sleep tight.



bungus said...

I googled C jackmanii and thnk their picture matches yours (but rather ‘bluer’).

Very good St Pancras pic from Helen. Both clocks may be a few seconds fast.

I’d say your curtain light pic needs the monitor cropping out – must try harder!(OK, I realise it was but an experimental shot).

I didn’t think it would take you long to get PC problems.
I’m glad I settle for the simple solutions!
But at least it gave you chance to practice your tea mashing.

If I am thinking of the right person I don’t think I do like Dan Snow – unless I’m thinking of the breathless chap who finds everythiong exciting (he did the disappointing series on architecture).

I haven’t seen a robin lately either; but don’t they tend to disappear from gardens at certain times of year?

I don’t know anything else by Jenny Joseph but, although I like much of Wendy Cope’s stuff, she has had a fair bit published that I am not at all impressed by. I once sent her a parody of something of hers (scathing about women as opposed to her men, eg, 'Men are like buses') and got a very nice reply.

I must say that I think veal is pretty bland, even tasteless – we occasionally had it as a Sunday joint ‘at home’.
Apart from being much more expensive, I’d say it is comparable for depth of flavour with the baby chickens at 2 for a quid.
But I agree that it would give the calves some dignity to become food rather than being turned into ‘who knows what?’.
I recall watching a programme about one ex-farmer who now does nothing but travel around neighbouring farms collecting the bodies of slaughtered newborn calves and taking them for disposal. He does it cheaper than the dogfood people themselves and manages to scrape a living.

Bishops hats are fine
But poor architrave joints
Are deplorable.

I last saw Henry Normal at Northern College where he was performing to Mansfield NUM members.
He asked if we (Shirebrook & District Writers’ Group) would like to share the stage but, when he got the feel of his audience, thought it kinder not to let us suffer!

Alex's party went really well.
We had a proper downpour an hour or so before it started and a shower later. Fortunately people could shelter in the house or the garage or under what is now known as a ‘gazebo’ (I pointed out to Jessica that they are not really ’gazebos’ but she said “Yes they are; my dad’s got one.”). Otherwise the weather was much kinder than we had feared.
No one got drunk or otherwise disgraced themselves and the only down side was the presence of Alex’s natural grandfather (Sandra’s first husband) who managed to back several people into corners and tell them his full CV or about the gear ratios on his Lambretta or other fascinating stuff.
He managed to nail me once and, after saying “How are you,” to whch I replied “Not too bad,”, said “Yes, I heard you’d not been well I’ve got this speck on my eye I thought it was on my glasses at first it kept following me around but it isn’t apparently it’s actually on my eye it’s only like a little dot I wondered what it was because it followed me around so I went to the doctors and he said there’s something on your eye and sent me to the eye hospital and they said yes there’s something on your eye it’s only a tiny speck a burst blood vessel now I’ve got to go for a cholesterol test I didn’t know I’d got blood pressure and the prices Specsavers want to charge they said no you can’t have both it’s either a free pair of glasses or reactive lense you can’t have both but I found a little shop who replaced the lenses for £70 when Specsavers were going to charge twice that I don’t know how I’ll go on with this cholesterol test …” at which Sandra interrupted, saying “How old are you?” “62 he said “That’s it,” she told him, “You’re falling to pieces just like the rest of us.” But then she let him start again with me.
He talked non-stop for twenty minutes which seemed like an hour; all about him and his sodding eye and none of it interesting.
After that I managed to slip aside when I saw him coming and let him verbally assault Sandra’s sister (3 times).
He stayed ages. Danny arrived at 4.00 but had to drive around until 6.00 when Sandra asked his father’s wife to take him home because Dan wouldn’t come in while he was there.
There were a lot of people I didn’t know, all with extended families, including one very charming, articulate and amusing lad who was home-schooled and because he has moved around all his life is accentless and therefore regarded in Ollerton as ‘posh’ (a scathing criticism). He has just split with his wife, is staying with his sister, and was accompanied by his 18 month old son whom he has care of for the weekend. Sandra wonders what his wife will say about the soaking wet buggy (left out in the rain)
Yeah, all-in-all it went well. Only one broken glass (and that not deliberate or against someone’s nose which is good for Ollerton). Exaggerate? Me? Not in a thousand years.
I had pork pie for breakfast (just like Christmas) and the chickens are delirious with delight at the goodies.
We also discovered that our next-door-but-four newsagent neighbour is to accompany his estranged wife to the same garden party as Sandra and her fellow volunteers on Tuesday.

Re the supersaturates bombshell, it’s just a pity that it won’t give chips the flavour of beef dripping (still commonly used in Yorkshire chippies).

From certain remarks passed by my wife, I think Bill Owen would have been favourite for the part if he wasn’t dead.
"I'm not sure that will matter," I can imagine her saying. Whenever I go out with any of my several friends, she mutters “Last of the Summer Wine again.”

I hope you remember your mother’s unforgettable saying.
One useful thing about Graham’s training is that he always carries a notebook. Since I stopped smoking I don’t even have a fag packet and, as a result, countless gems are denied to posterity.

I would think Paddy O’Palmer and our Irish ancestors probably fried in pork dripping.

It’s a nice idea but I think the farmers and customers who are influenced by the idea that ‘animals having a free range/organic type of life before slaughter makes them happy and produces better quality meat’ are still a small minority.
Profit and cheapness rule.

Spot on with the Mrs Merton quote.

helen c said...

Hi all, thanks to Graham and Bungus for kind comments about my St. Pancras pic. I did scan the roof very carefully for discarded lolly sticks before taking the picture.

Jill said...

Bungus - reckon Alex's party is worthy of a tv drama, like 'Abigail's party'....Anyway I thought you were going to stay quietly in your room because of infection? Think of what you would have missed....I can remember when R's brother with present wife would arrive at the front door, while ex-wife and children would leave by the back door - one memorable time we had two ex-wives (they were OK tobgether) leaving by the back-door....

I can't think of an actor who would do you justice. Got as far as a cross between James Robertson-Justice and Alf Garnett.....with a touch of Bill Owen thrown in!

G, hope all went well on the trip today, looking forward to hearing about it.

Helen, good to see another woman in the 'comments'!

roy said...

Re “Purple” I think the older you get the more you appreciate it. Not sure about spitting but for the short period after my op that I had to walk with a stick I was always tempted to rattle some railings. However houses around here don’t seem to have them these days.

I also like Wendy Cope. I had always been intrigued by the following title but had never read it so when I saw a book of her poems with the same title I bought it. Here it is:

Making Cocoa for Kingsley Amis

It was a dream I had last week
And some kind of record seemed vital
I knew it wouldn’t be much of a poem
But I love the title.

My sort of humour.

I also like most of Benjamin Zephaniah. His Stephen Lawrence poem comes to mind.

Helen I believe there are painters who have become famous for inserting a particular object in all their paintings. Isn’t there one who always inserts a mouse? No doubt Graham can name some.
Perhaps you could become famous by inserting a lolly stick in all your photographs!

bungus said...

You’re right about Abigail’s party. Isn’t human behaviour wonderfully entertaining? If only there HAD been some drunkenness and fighting… One guest did go round to nasty neighbour, hammer on his door (no response) and tell him to get his bloody barking Alsations in – and he DID!
I decided to stay put until someone infected arrived and nobody (obvious) did. You are right, of course; even to have missed the harangue would have meant a loss of post event enjoyment. I find that some of the worst episodes of one’s life , eg, National Service, later become the most valuable in terms of reminiscence.
I usually end up enjoying the ocasional parties at our house but cannot stand the days of preparation which disturb the evn tenor of my life – it’s impossible to even find a worktop space to cut a slice of bread, much less prepare a meal. Sandra's sister and others have persistently tried to get me to accept a celebration of a decade but I have steadfastly refused.
I must object to the Alf Garnett association. Amusing though he was, and bigoted old bugger that I may be, I cannot go along with the racism, extreme sexism, etc, that he displayed. I had to protest when accosted outside the paper shop yesterday by another monologuist who is looking forward to the day when he can vote BNP (“If we were here in 50 year’s time I wouldn’t be talking to you, I’d be talking to a black man.”). I am also (usually) able to laugh at my own (occasional) foolishness.
The Bill Owen association dates from a visit to Haworth when I went out of the town, over a drystone wall, and down the hillside to pick bilberries. Sandra was watching from above when she was joined by other tourists who, not making any association, asked, “Do you know what he’s doing?” Compo had a sense of mischief which I think I share.

I once went to a Wendy Cope performance and bought another of her collections, ‘Serious Concerns’ which I find less consistently entertaining than ‘Making Cocoa …’ (which memory t4lls me is parodic). While ‘...Concerns’ contains some very enjoyable stuff (eg, below) there are other pieces I cannot appreciate.
The day he moved out was terrible –
That evening she went through hell.
His absence wasn’t a problem
But the corkscrew had gone as well.”

The mouse man was a wood carver, Robert Thompson, mainly church pews and stuff but also household items.


On Sunday evening I started watching ’ The Seven Wonders of the Muslim World’ on Channel 5. Unfortunately I fell asleep after about 20 minutes and woke at 9 o’clock just as it finished.
I then watched ‘The Mission’ which I had never seen before. There are a few ‘Indiana Jones’ bits but otherwise excellent, I thought.

Grunting fish yield vocal clues.
A grunting fish helps scientists to date the origins of vocal sounds to about 400 million years ago.
Some of us haven't progressed much, have we?

anonymousrob said...

The St Pancras roof photo is reminiscent of a shot that keeps appearing in amateur photo exhibitions (which are really glorified competitions). That one is of York Station roof (I think) and it curves from left to right. Judges view that as important because, they will tell you, we read from left to right and therefore, when the photo flows that way, it is easier for the viewer to read. Clearly it is important in the amateur 'camera club' world that viewers are not challenged or even encouraged to look at images and think about them.

Having said that I like Helen's picture because it does draw you in and encourage you to look around. I especially like the positioning of the clock. Please enter the photo in every competition in the forthcoming season and keep a count of how many judges tell you the clock is in the wrong place. On second thoughts save yourself the bother because they all will!

Haiku to Bungus's neighbour:
Shall I compare thee
To monosyllabic yobs
Or a grunting fish?

The casting of the role of 'Bungus' in Clinical Tales might be easier than I first thought. I've done a bit of nifty googling and suggest the following:
Michael Caine
David Thewlis
Jim Broadbent
John Cleese
John Hurt
Bill Nighy
Pete Postlethwaite

The last three are my favourites.


Reg said...

The Artist Roy refers to is Tenence Cuneo- "Many of these works include a small mouse (sometimes lifelike, sometimes cartoon-like), his trademark. They can be difficult to detect, and many people enjoy scouring his paintings to find one. Even some of his portraits of the famous contain a mouse"- Extract from Wikapedia There is even a book called The Mouse and his Master.

The Art Exhibition in the council Chamber opening went well The Chain Gang being inattendance The Mayor of Eastwood, The Mayor of Broxtowe- and the Deputy Chair of the County Council are all Ladies. I await comments.
John Holmes of Radio Nottingham did the honours. I thought that he was a very nice fellow together with Kate his Wife.I had quite a long chat with him about walking in Derbyshire which is where he was last week if any one missed him on the radio.