Saturday, April 25, 2009


Black Pudding

Pork sausages (bangers)

Back bacon (lean)

Served with mushrooms egg and fried slice, and of course a lovely hot cup of tea.
Posted by Picasa

TV Tie Ins

From my personal toy car collection

City of Metropolis Taxi BatmobileStarsky & Hutch Ford Gran TorinoJerrys BangerDrax Helicopter Stromberg HelicopterCorgi James Bond Aston Martin
Drax ShuttleDrax Shuttle
Kojak Buick Regal
Chopper Squad
Blake's 7Liberator
Goodyear Blimp
James Bond Lotus
James Bond LotusJames Bond LotusHuskey James Bond Aston Martin
City of Metropolis PD (Superman boxed set)
Bat Copter
Captain America Porsche
BMW or Heinkle 3 wheeler
Return of the Saint
Return of the Saint
Husky Chitty Chitty Bang Bang
James Bond Citroes 2CV

I keep forgetting how much I've still got at my parents house.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Martin Luther King, Regional Shoreline

So there were meant to be about 12 photos here, but I see Picasa can only send 4 photos at a time to Blogger. That's a bit of a let down. I uploaded the 1600pixel images to here. I also have an entry over at Montgomery Pictures, my photo only blog.

Nestled between an industrial park and the Airport, this is an unlikely area for a nature reserve, but indeed that is what we have. This park, opened in 1998, is a wetland restoration project.

The land lies between an industrial park whose growth was limited by San Leandro Channel, the Estuary, an Airport (employee) parking lot on Swan way, and the San Leandro Estuary and the the old aerodrome on the other side.

Apart from the interesting sculptures, a model of the Bay Bridge (?) and two huge steel dishes, there is a great deal of nature (walking to sculpture, with camera to eye, I almost fell down at least a dozen gopher holes. I was trying to be careful. The wetlands are doing their job, though I must confess the Canada Geese seem to prefer the populous Lake Merrit, only two being present here. Still, billions of little waders and assorted water fowl.

The following image is just a couple of kids playing on the dishes, but for some reason it looks like some people emerging from a flying saucer that has crash landed. I like it. There is also a play area for the kids, as if acres of gopher holes to fall into wasn't enough fun. This is the sort of play structure that's popular in a regional park, a whale breaking out of the Pacific.

Posted by Picasa

Bunty Muffin, Turkey Slayer.

Every time she saw a pub like this, she found part of her drifting back to the early eighties. We all knew this pub, there was one near you, and you've been there, often. It's the whitewashed one on the bend of the old 'A' road, the Nags Head, the Royal Oak, The White Hart, never a modern name. There's a pasture behind it with a couple of old horses, the beer garden is under a couple of oaks, with a swing or two alongside, and the car park always seems to have the same Ford Cortina and Austin Princess parked in it.

Those summer afternoons, dizzy with swinging and fizzy with R Whites lemonade. The tables sticky with beer slops and that one overturned pint pot with a wasp in it. Fingers dusty with salt from the peanuts or greasy from the crisps, the ground littered with little blue sachets from the salt and matches and dog ends. The air full of those smells which talk of adventure to us townies, either the dusty, sweet, dry air near a corn field, or the pungent manure hum, or simply the sweat of the horses, or the acrid taste of an oast house. Mum in a floral print dress, dad without a tie and sleeves rolled up, big brother in brown corduroy pants and paisly shirt.

For Bunty those afternoons also meant Grandad. He'd be sat there, pin stripes on his cotton shirt, braces, flat cap, pipe. He'd be sat there, warm smiling eyes, silly stories, and a couple of shillings extra pocket money. Gramma had moved on years ago. After a pint or two Bunty would help grandad carry the flowers down the bridal path which lead across the canal to the parish church half a mile away.

The bridal path met the B road at the corner of the churchyard where a rickety lych gate gave admittance through an ivy covered stone wall. The sandy gravel path led past a couple of impressive marble headstone to the church, and then forked providing passage around the Norman structure to a quiet grave yard shaded by apple trees. There they talk to Gramma for a while tidying the grave. Buntys job was to get the trowel and watering can from the shed at the back corner, while giving Grandad a few private minutes, then the two of them would get busy, pulling weeds, and replacing last weeks flowers. They would only be there half an hour, but Grammas grave was the tidiest there, looking much as it did when first laid there 10 years earlier.

You just can't trust modern technology. I was testing the auto posting from Google Docs to Blogger, and was sending this to my online twin blog. It somehow ended up here.

The above is just a few paragraphs writing exercise. I have a new character I want to work into a series of stories. Since she is a mid 30's English gal I have plenty I could write about her. Who knows what will happen.

Monday, April 20, 2009

Snot Racing Car

So here's a nice little convertible. Do you know Lego? Okay then, check out the headlights.

That's right, the headlights are regular 2x2 slopes, turned so their studs are to the front. They make good headlights like that. The internal cylinder looks like a lens element.

You can also see the windshield is the old double height 6 wide truck windshield, again studs forward.

The tail light configuration, licence plate and bumper all show studs to the front too. Interesting styling, a little square, but still different.

The plan view shows a folded back rag top. Studs on the top of the model this time. There is actually a 4x1 beam with side studs which provide the mounting point for the roof piece.

The bottom view is most telling. You can see the model is built from bumper up (actually I started at the nose). You can see studs just behind the tires. There is also a Technic beam, it has four snap to stud elements in it, and this is the mount point for the seats. You want seats to have a single stud width between them so you can get two minifigs side by side. Two studs is too wide, and no studs means the arms bump into each other. Actually, I find 7 wide cars to be great for two minifigs to share, but are not the easiest build option. One can always just use jumpers (2x1 plates with a single stud in the middle) to get the seats apart, but that is messy.

So this is my first SNOT (Studs Not On Top) car. I have built some small space ships this way before, but cars, this is number one.

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Some New MOC's

So here are some MOC's (My Own Creations) that we've put together. The first one is a rather natty fire truck. I designed it onLDD (Lego Digital Designer), and since I'd used a few new parts, bought it from Lego Factory.

I didn't use the chrome spoked wheels myself, they have a neat reversible hub with lugnuts on one side and finer spokes on the other. The kids switched wheels on me a few months ago.

I actually came up with a truck chassis/cab first time around, then I added the fire engine parts. When submitted to Lego Factory it actually got tagged as a "cool creation", one small claim to fame.

These Three critters, we're not sure what they are, but they are cute, and are the work of my 11 year old. They almost got re-used for parts the other day, but were too cute to take apart. We now have the photos, so I guess building can continue.

The following space ship was a quick build epic scale space ship. I started by building a couple of micro schips, and decided they need a mother ship to dock onto.

Yes the rockets on the wing are really minifigure binoculars, but they are comonly used as boosters, or gun barrels in the Star Wars tie in sets.

Keen observers will notice the nose is on at 45deg to the main body on the shuttles.

Posted by Picasa

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

120 Degrees of Separation

Less than a minute apart.
Posted by Picasa