Thursday, June 03, 2004

In order to fulfil my "topical" mandate here's a thought on the Chelsea Flower Show [1]: Given the highly competitive nature of the show, and the likelihood of ructions occurring between neighbouring gardens [see Diarmuid Gavin [2] vs the boat race woman], it is strange that certain plants don't appear more regularly. For example, dandelions, pussy willow, anything with catkins. Or am I just being mean? [You so would]. It's either that or unleashing masses of spiders.

[2] Or Dairymaid Gavin as MS Word calls him.

Edward Hopper's Nighthawks. Image from Rogue Review website - Click pic to access[1] It finished last week. And whilst I'm talking about out of date stuff, I will eventually get round to discussing the assorted ex-exhibitions at the Tate. And now they've got that Hopper [Nighthawks, not Apocalypse Now] thing I want to see as well - Imagine covered his work last night[3]. His pictures always feel very over-exposed, like photographs where the shutter has been open too long, so the colours are very intense and the contrast is heightened. Yep, I have to go and see that exhibition. Not least to see what Nighthawks looks like without the black frame surrounding it - I discovered in my first year at uni that my neighbour had the same picture up on the same spot on the other side of the wall. Except her poster had a white background, mine had black. In hers the screen appears to be daytime, albeit a rainy day. On mine it's night. But we checked the actual printing and the colours of the picture were the same, it's just the effects of the blank space framing the picture.

[3] I can only find the listings blurb and a press release about the previous series on the BBC's website. You'll just have to imagine the programme. [Sorry].

And to see the effects of colour-balance view this search. Wow, it's just like playing spot the difference, except in some there are very obvious differences.

And there's lots of Birthday Goodness[TM] over at GfB. So something geburtstag. Admittedly about the only good adjective I can remember is schon, so that might have to be schon geburtstag Herr Armstrong. And sorry if I just said "you give birth beautifully Mr Armstrong".

A large expanse of white flesh. No, I'm not that big [too far the other way in fact], but you get the idea. And no, I haven't finished reading it, and yes, I have run out of steam [it probably says something when reading 1930s books on psychology seem preferable]. Image cribbed from Dietblog - click pic.And that's about it for now - except to say, where I swim must have some of the most diplomatic people in the country. Why? Because it was only when I was getting changed to leave that I noticed that the entire left side-seam on my swimming trunks had disintegrated. The waistband and bit of thread at the hem were all that was holding it together. So if you saw someone walking round a swimming pool at lunchtime, with a large expanse of incredibly white flesh flashing through a slit that's verging on the indecent, then that was probably me. Oh well.

Although I would be exposing more had I been wearing an intact pair of old-school style swimming trunks [think proper Speedos]. Anyway, it's probably just as well they gave up, as I never liked the luminous yellow strip (which has now faded to slightly greenish white). Why do I have swimming I don't like. Emergency shopping. In 1998. Possibly it's time for some new ones.

Just back from a brief foray into Waitrose, and I know it's a cliché, but what is it with girls in pearls? I made some silly comment about it when we went in, and then they just multiplied. I gave up counting when we got to the teens, and that was before we'd got past the roast chicken. On 60-something women with hair that looks like it's been carved from marble, I can understand, but on screaming brats abusing those mini-trolleys[4]? She was six, for god's sake [ok, maybe eight]. But still...maybe, I should have gone to join the great unwashed at, er, Sainsbury's. It probably says something about the town that Sainsbury's is at the lower end of the market. Perhaps that this town is much too twee and much too expensive. London prices without the convenience of London.

[4] Such a good idea. May the inventor have his Achilles tendons pummelled, skins flailed and eyes poked by those warning flags forevermore.

I've always wanted to be able to print money. Now I can, thanks to Hasbro [linked]. Although I'm not sure that the game can cope with inflationary pressures.Complete mystery du jour: on the riverbank, and in the river, is a scattered collection of the Monopoly money [but it's only printed on one side, the other is white]. No signs of errant plastic hotels, or the property cards, just the money. Why?
A bungled heist? [What do you mean it's not valid currency?]
Sibling rivalry gone too far?
Some art project?
Prototype confetti experiments?

Looking at the maker's website, and wondering exactly how many different versions of the game there are. And then realising they have to keep bringing out new versions [Lord of the Rings, Pokemon, Shrek], as pretty much every family has at least one copy, and they keep inheriting more. I have hunch that, in this country at least, the market must be pretty saturated in terms of the standard Old Kent Road to Mayfair edition [none of your Boardwalk malarkey here].


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