Sunday, June 08, 2014

101 things that are better to do than watching football - Number 1

It's the time again when the poxy World Cup dominates every form of media available and people like me (who can not stand foodball) find it increasingly hard to avoid seeing any reference to the bore-fest that is the World Cup.  Whether it's turning on the TV or radio, going on to the internet, walking past a poster on the streets, we will all be reminded every single day that it's that time when a bunch of grown men pretend to be children in a playground, kicking a silly ball around.

So, for the first time ever I have a produced a video which I want you to share.  Get your friends to share it.  Get your family to share it.  Get your work colleagues to share it.  Hey, if your pet has a Facebook page, get them to share it too!
Yes....  Watching a kettle boil is more interesting to watch that the World Cup.
I imagine this whole 'sharing video' malarkey will end up failing miserably with only a few shares, but hey....  Why not!
Now sit back and enjoy the boiling.  (By the way, it was a lovely cup of tea).

Thursday, June 05, 2014

Songs that remind me of my childhood Number 27 - The Safety Dance (Men Without Hats)

The Safety Dance, from Canadian new wave band Men Without Hats will be forever in my childhood memories, as well as the memories of many people who grew up in the 1980's simply from it's memorable video which accompanied the song featuring frontman Ivan Doroschuk and dwarf actor Mike Edmonds prancing about West Kington near Chippenham, South West England (amazing what you can find out from Wikipedia) showing the local townsfolk how to dance by repeatedly forming an "S" sign (S for Safety) by jerking both arms into a stiff pose. 

The music video alone is pure 80's cheese but in my opinion is better and more creative than anything produced today.  The song is quite catchy too!  If only they still made stuff like this!  I'd buy it.

I love this song so much, I'm even going to post a video from the Status Quo cover.  Not exactly a song from my childhood, but a damn good version from a band I'm not particularly keen on. 

AND FINALLY.....   I even have to admit that I quite like the Glee version too!  Sad or what!ARRRGGGGHHHHHH!

Sunday, June 01, 2014

Songs that remind me of my childhood Number 26 - The Sign (Ace of Base)

Oh my, it's been just over a year since my last "Song that reminds me of my childhood".   To make up for it, here's one that some may argue was not a song from my childhood at all.  Here's "The Sign" from Ace of Base.

I've always said that my childhood pretty much ended the day I walked out of my secondary school on Friday, June the 25th 1993 but I'm going to stretch it a little here because this song came out in October of that same year, and will forever be imprinted in my memory due to the constant air time it had on the local radio station (Essex FM) when I was doing my work experience at the Echo newspaper during my brief time at Basildon College in 1994. 

Now for me, the 90's wasn't really a great decade.  Sure, it had a few good things going for it, but for me music wasn't one of them.  During the early 90s, my interest in music was pretty much non-existent apart from listening to Erasure, Jean Michel Jarre and Mike Oldfield.  I suppose this song, and The Beloved's Sweet Harmony are the two songs that really define my musical tastes from those early years of a decade that to me will always be fondly remembered by me for playing my Amiga 500, getting my head around playing Magic (some card game) with my friend Dan, ogling over Terry Farrell (Jadzia Dax in Star Trek Deep Space Nine) and watching Noel's House Party on a Saturday evening.

Anyway, on a separate note - I do really hope to update my blog with more posts over the next couple of weeks.  Work has been considerably busy and stressful and has pretty much taken over my life.  I'm literally living and breathing servers, and computers to the point where I'm even losing sleep!  Yes I know it's not healthy, but what can I do....  It pays the bills!!!   The good news is that this time of year is usually a quiet time for us in the IT department at EHS (most of the students are either on study leave for their exams, or have left), so hopefully things will calm down for me so that I can get myself sorted again in time for the mass of work we'll be doing to the school network over the summer holiday. 

Onwards and upwards, and don't forget you can check out my other "Songs that remind me of my childhood" by clicking here.

Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Games that remind me of my childhood Number 23 : Buggy Boy (Commodore 64)

It's been too long since my last "Game that reminds me of my childhood".  So, let me begin by saying my next game is......


The Commodore 64 had some stand-out driving games, but one of my fondest racing gaming memories is from Elite System’s conversion of the arcade hit Buggy Boy by Taito. The game was a near perfect replica of the original arcade (minus the big fancy buggy graphics), and featured 5 courses containing all sorts of obstacles. The aim of the game was to complete each course before the timer reached zero. You could gain extra time by passing under “Time” gates, and increase your score by collecting different coloured flags, and going under various score gates. If you collect the coloured flags in a particular order (as shown at the top of the screen), you could also gain additional bonus points.

Buggy Boys 5 tracks

Along each route were numerous obstacles – some could help you in your goal to reach the end of the track, or ultimately cause you to crash, losing valuable time.

Logs - These made you jump and were quite useful for jumping over obstacles.  However, they could also cause you to crash if you timed the jump badly.

Stones – Running over these caused your buggy to drive on only two wheels. You had to be careful when hitting these because if your buggy ran over a log, it would crash!

Brick walls and Boulders, fences and trees - These were obstacles to miss at all times.

The game also featured water (avoid at all times), banked roads, narrow crossings over water, and tunnels.

I feel sorry for the current generation of youngsters – Show them a game like this, and they’ll just turn away and go back to their Playstations and Xboxes…. I could spend hours playing this. Graphics were simple but very good and colourful for the time the game came out (1987).  Sound was minimal as was the music, but overall the game was and still is fun to play.

The cover art

The tape

Monday, April 14, 2014

Stuart's Panoramic World 13 - Hampton Ferry, Evesham 2014

Here's another 360° panorama (the first for 2014!) taken today, on the 14th April 2014.  It was taken at one of the most picturesque places in Evesham - Hampton Ferry.

Use your mouse (or cursor keys) to look.  Your mouse wheel allows you to zoom in and out.,-1.9553665,15z?hl=en-GB
Location : Evesham, Hampton Ferry

Date : 14th April 2014

Camera : Canon EOS 600d

Download/Enlarge : Click here to enlarge 


Monday, March 31, 2014

Star Trek The Official Starship Collection - Various Models

A couple more 'photoshopped' photographs of my Eaglemoss Star Trek Starships Collection models.  All taken with my new Canon EOS 600D with the following settings :-

f-stop - f/22
Exposure Time - 30 seconds
ISO Speed - 100
Focal Length 18mm

Cardassian Galor Class Battlecruiser

USS Defiant

USS Defiant

USS Enterprise (Star Trek 09')

USS Equinox

USS Equinox

Enterprise NX-01
Ferengi Marauder

USS Dauntless