I'm Sorry I Haven't A Clue
The collected letters of Mrs Trellis
Round 1: the trail of the lonesome pun 
Two scan-caps from The Mystic Cottager,* 1795, because I can, obv.

The Mystic Cottager, pg 20, published 1795

... ::montage of turning pages:: ...

The Mystic Cottager, pg 33, published 1795

* The title is probably funnier if you're familiar with Brit slang.

- So, what are you doing, thinking, wondering about, reading, watching, making, or writing, that you don't usually post about?

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- Doing naarmamo: another cap, which I also turned into a naarmamo macro because it seemed appropriate (it’s traditional to make ones own completion certificate on the last day but I’ve never done this before).

Reflective link

NaartCollapse )

- Listening / watching music vids of songs I listened to last night because [someone] asked me if I hate ALL the teenypop and, no, I like pop, and in this case soul-pop, pop-funk, pop-jazz, pop-punk, pop-rock, and indie-pop. Enjoy (or not, there’s always my previous happiness jukebox):
1. Crazy - Gnarls Barkley, youtube 3mins, awesome vid but warning for cartoon insects (2006);
2. Happy - Pharrell Williams, youtube 4mins, warning for relentless happiness :-D (2013);
3. Could We - Cat Power, youtube 2mins (2006);
4. Hate to Say I Told You So - The Hives, youtube 3mins (2000);
5. Song 2 - Blur, vimeo 2mins (1997);
6. Sovereign Light Cafe - Keane, vimeo 4mins (2012).

- So, what are you doing, thinking, wondering about, reading, watching, making, or writing, that you don't usually post about?

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ish icons Curiosity Cures Boredom
- Doing naarmamo: a grumpy gatepost guardian lion.

Lion, a grumpy gatepost guardian

- Watching, film, Begin Again: I wish I’d loved this film, because it was trying hard not to conform to rom-com-isms, but it didn’t seem to be able to find engaging alternatives to replace the rejected tropes. The teenypop music, which made me die a little inside every time it tootled into earshot, and Let’s Do The Show Right Here plot also seemed aimed at a younger audience than would be implied by the 15 certificate (presumably for the drugs - mostly alcohol and cigars - and occasional swearing?). Not worth 1 hr 24mins of my life, not even if Keira Knightley had been onscreen the whole time.

- Watching, film, Boyhood: y’all know I generally love Richard Linklater’s films, but this is perfect. And despite the title, it gives significant screen time to the extended family of the "boy", including one of very few filmic representations of domestic abuse that have ever made me react with "YES, THAT’S HOW IT IS (in all its messy and unresolved long-term impact)" rather than "well, I’m glad they’re trying to show domestic violence in a drama". I’m sorry this was given a 15 certificate (presumably for the drug use and sexual references) because it’s one of the best "coming of age" stories I’ve ever seen. The audience I watched with were still enthralled at the end of the 2hr 44mins and most of them sat and listened to the title music at the end instead of the usual rush for the door. RECOMMENDED, obv. P.S. The dating advice Mason gives Mason Jr to *listen to any particular girl, especially when she talks about her interests* is gold dust.

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- Writing: my spellchecker rejected "discursions"! My vocabulary > my spelling checker's vocabulary. P.S. "claggy" is a great word (may you never need to use it).

- Doing naarmamo: stegosaurus wall.

Stegosaurus wall

Stegosaurus wall, in colour

- So, what are you doing, thinking, wondering about, reading, watching, making, or writing, that you don't usually post about?

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- Doing naarmamo: my internet access has been a bit intermittent and I probably won’t be around tomorrow at all so have a couple of naarts today in lieu.

In ur ex-haberdashery urbexin ur fire astinguishers!

Ex-haberdashery

Sometimes I have these strange dreams….

Sometimes I have these strange dreams

- So, what are you doing, thinking, wondering about, reading, watching, making, or writing, that you don't usually post about?

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- Writing: I for one welcome our new overlords. My comment reproduced from a flocked post, because I can (and am on a roll with the 70s meta, lol): "Where else would Clangers live but on the moon? Generation Starships? Imperialist colonial Clanger enclaves on conquered worlds? Aliens zoos for defeated species? Clearly a better question is whether they're willing to share their extremely advanced technology, for surviving in space, with mere humans?! And does Peppa Pig only look like a Clanger or are her family infiltrating Earth before the coming invasion from our new Clanger overlords?" /nostalgia

- Doing naarmamo: "The best antiques are old friends."

The best antiques are old friends

- So, what are you doing, thinking, wondering about, reading, watching, making, or writing, that you don't usually post about?

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- Watching, the live Q&A after Deep Breath in the cinema: Peter Capaldi, Jenna Coleman, and Steven Moffat, were asked untaxing questions by Zoe Ball in a PR exercise, obv. My favourite moment was Capaldi’s casual use of the word "mirthfulness" ♥ and his expressive hands. Apart from that it was mostly the obligatory public demonstrations of mild fannishness from the slebs to the plebs: Capaldi’s fondness for Mondassian style Cybermen, running along corridors, and his excitement the first time he had to film escaping through a ventilation shaft. There was a question ostensibly from a 5 year old girl called Martha Amelia Rose, and Moffat speculated whether the family’s next child would be named Face of Boe. The most interesting-to-me moment was at the beginning when Capaldi was asked about the first time he spoke the line "I am the Doctor" and he mentioned that it wasn’t the first time because he’d stood in front of mirrors saying it when he was a child, and he voiced his assumption that every fan has done the same, which made me wonder if that’s true because I always identified far more with the Doctor than with any of his companions but I never projected myself into the role (possibly because, y’know, for all the alien aspects of his earlier incarnations they were all white men &c). It made me wonder how other child fans expressed their feelings of dis/identification and whether I rly am odd for not playing Doctor to the mirror.

- Doing naarmamo: rooftops, chimneys, and moss.

Rooftop, portrait

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- Doing naarmamo: playing with Tiny Dalek from the old Doctor Who playset I bought secondhand.

The Daleks take Malvernhatten!

The Daleks take Malvernhatten

Note the hovering saucer in the background.

- Watching, Doctor Who: I saw Deep Breath last night at the cinema and I loved it. Peter Capaldi in this episode is now my definitive Doctor.

Very minor spoilers for the beginning.Collapse )

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- Doing, unintentionally fighting crime: I accidentally shredded the skin on the end of my thumb, which is extremely unfortunate because if I commit crime my thumbprint will now be immediately identifiable!!1!!

- Thinking, belated Good Life meta: Tom Good is Peter Pan, Barbara Good is Tinkerbell, Jerry Leadbetter is one of the Lost Boys, Margot Leadbetter is Wendy. The series has an extremely strong in-story bias towards Tom / Peter Pan and Barbara / Tinkerbell, of course, but I have much more sympathy for Margot / Wendy than one might expect (PROBABLY BECAUSE SHE’S WENDY despite her Daily Telegraphisms).

- Doing naarmamo: I owe four naarts including today but have a spare too. I’m still taking and editing photos. Davenham was the home of the Perrins family of Lea & Perrins Worcestershire Sauce fame. This is the gatehouse.

Davenham 1, home of the Perrins of Lea and Perrins

They decorated their wrought iron gateposts to look like the King of the Nazgul.

Davenham 2, King of the Nazgul

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- Doing naarmamo: I made an icon of Margot Leadbetter, from the Good Life, wearing a Daily Telegraph newspaper party hat (from someone else’s screencap).

Margot Leadbetter wearing a Daily Telegraph party hat, icon

- Reading and social embarrassment: an acquaintance with whom I occasionally discuss higher brow literature wandered over to me in the library to say hello. He was carrying a 22 cd unabridged audio book of Ulysses by James Joyce. I had just picked up World of Poo by Terry Pratchett. I blame this incident on [personal profile] slemslempike for counting the number of Pterry books she’s read, and therefore inspiring me to do the same, which led to me perusing a bibliography and noticing the ones I hadn’t read… like World of Poo. ::facepalm::

Naturally I’m now hoping you’ll all tell me your embarrassing book-related moments. Anon comments are available for the shy.

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- Doing naarmamo: a cap of the pre-show set for Claire Warboys’ one-woman bio-musical of music hall star and male impersonator Vesta Tilley, which I recently enjoyed at Huntingdon Hall (aka the Countess of Huntingdon’s Connexion Chapel, built 1804-15). An inadequate original image saved for viewability through the magic of digital editing (or not, ymmv).

Vesta Tilley props at Huntingdon Hall, Worcester 07-14

- Reading the fiction alphabet meme (excluding poetry, although I should probably do it again for that… and then again for comic books, heh), borrowed from everyone on my flist who has already done it and offered to everyone who hasn’t because BOOK GEEK NOSINESS FTW!

Author you've read the most books by

No idea, but I’ve read 40 novels by Terry Pratchett and intend to read more so let’s say it’s ♥ Pterry. ♥

Best sequel ever

Alice Through the Looking Glass, as my copy was called when I was a wee kidlet, also more correctly known as Through the Looking-Glass, and What Alice Found There. I’ve never liked or enjoyed the arbitrary Wonderland, but the rules-based pro-philosophy Looking Glass is a perennial favourite.

Currently reading

T’interwebz, obv. I recently signed up to the Waitrose (supermarket)/ John Lewis (department store) website but I wasn’t allowed to sign up as Waitrosa or Jane Lewis, and Margot Leadbetter was already taken, so I resorted to a different nickname and if you ever read a recipe posted by "destroy capitalism"… lol.

Drink of choice while reading

COFFEE.

E to ZCollapse )

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- Reading, Jill Paton Walsh: someone who shall remain nameless tried to get me to read a "cosy" murder mystery on the grounds that it referenced night climbing and Shakespeare. By the top of page 17 of The Badly written dross Quarto I’d already worked out that the ev0l murdurur was going to turn out to be the non-posh student who was diagnosed as dangerously mentally ill in her absence by "our heroine detectress" on the basis that Ms Not Posh Enough For Cambridge was angry about class issues. It never seems to occur to snobs such as Jill Paton Walsh that they’re vicious class warriors constantly attacking people they believe are socially beneath them. I skipped to the end and I was correct about the outcome. In conclusion: this drearily written "mystery" is so badly constructed that the end is painfully obvious from the top of page 17 onwards. I didn’t bother to read any more and gave it to a charity shop. This sort of thing isn’t my idea of "cosy" entertainment but ymmv, obv. [Class war aside: it will never cease to amaze me that the Paton Walshes of this world, who habitually stamp on the fingers of Other people lower on the social ladder/pyramid, have persuaded themselves that this active violence is both normative and within their idea of "nice" and "polite". Whereas when the Other people, whose fingers they’re stamping on, call up for them to PLEASE stop the violence then the Paton Walshes persuade themselves that those Other people are not-nice "evil" and impolite "mentally ill" (hence so many abuse victims wrongly diagnosed by the psychiatric and criminal justice systems as "hysterical" or "paranoid" when, nope, they’re merely accurately describing the realities of their everyday lives). /social commentary]

- Doing naarmamo: I’m not sure why this image appeals to me so much. Possibly it’s because I’m a girl and was therefore chromosomally and genetically programmed on the prehistoric savannah to be immutably attracted to the word "shoe" (also "cliche", "sarcasm", and "evolutionary psychology is bollocks", obv). Anyway, three versions: (1) the Inevitable Greyscale, (2) the Feeling Blue, and (3) the Tobacco-Stained 70s.

Shoe of the Week 1

Shoe of the Week 2

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- Reading, books 2014, 94

94. Emilie and the Sky World, by Martha Wells, is the second Emilie book although it could probably be read as a standalone. It’s a rollicking steam-fantasy adventure starring a teenage girl (and a plant-being of indeterminate age and gender ;-p and the middle aged woman isn’t a baddie or physically incapable \o/ ). The worldbuilding is excellent, the plot rollicks, and the characters are well written, all of which one expects from Wells. I saved this novel until I was unwell and needed a pick-me-up, and it worked perfectly after I INHALED it whole, heh. Loved. Recced.

- Doing naarmamo: more from the "details" themed photo walk. An owl gate guardian and a rather camp "Spirit of Youth" war memorial, 1923, by Richard Reginald Goulden (First World War, obv, as the designs of Second World War memorials in Britain tend to preclude any style appearing similar to Nazi approved "art"). Nearby Barnard’s Green has a brilliant dual purpose war memorial and bus shelter in late Art Deco style, 1945, with a poppy theme, and a more recent dedication plaque stating: "Because the war to end all wars didn’t". Heartbreaking. There’s also a more conventional statue memorial next to the shelter. Note: the pink tinge on the Spirit of Youth is from excessive UV light and I toned it down so plz not to be blaming me for the statue’s inherent campness.

War memorial, 1923, by Goulden, Malvern, 08-14

Owl gate guardian, Malvern, 08-14

One small owl.Collapse )

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- Thinking of changing my journal name to "weeping and commenting upon the sobbing deer" or possibly "weeping and commenting upon the sodding deer". I blame [personal profile] capriuni! ;-P

- Doing naarmamo: four images to cover today and the previous three days. I’m still playing with primitive image editing software using new and older caps. So, three images of Birmingham’s curvaceous architecture, and one of the graffiti on the train.

Old and new architecture, Birmingham 06-14

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boz4pm Blackadder Cunning Plan
- Watching the weather: phenomenal quantities of rain. Enough to cause localised flash flooding. Send ark. P.S. Remember to give boarding details to the unicorns. P.P.S. Ooops… too late.

- Reading, books 2014, 93

93. View with a Grain of Sand, by Wislawa Szymborska, translated by Stanislaw Baranczak and Clare Cavanagh ('scuse my diacritical laziness). Excellent poetry collection, obv, especially if you like free verse with a philosophical bent. She deserved that Nobel Prize for Literature in 1996 and her translators appear to have done the poems justice (also Adam Czerniawski whose translation, People on a Bridge, I read previously). I’d like to compare different translations of the same poems (especially English/USian variations in language) but I don’t have time at the moment. There are five examples of Szymborska’s poems at the Nobel website.

- Doing naarmamo, with two caps of church portals: one processed to show off the digital medium 2010s style, and one processed to look like a 1950s souvenir postcard. Both are, I hope, true to their original subject because when seen in differing lights it's simultaneously a respectable Perpendicular Gothic grey stone church and a outrageously particoloured patchwork harlequin.

Malvern Priory, north porch, 08-14

Malvern Priory, north nave clerestory windows, 08-14

- So, what are you doing, thinking, wondering about, reading, watching, making, or writing, that you don't usually post about?

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skywardprodigal Cog Flowers
- Doing naarmamo: ↑ North Hill [this way up].

North Hill, 08-14

- Reading, black history, coalfields: I’ve just seen a verbatim eyewitness quote that there was a black (i.e. of African descent) miner working at Betteshanger colliery in Kent sometime between 1926-48 (end date?). This isn’t too surprising as black people have always moved into the heart of Kent from its ports, but it’s rare to find documentary evidence, such eyewitness accounts, possibly because black people (like everyone else) were either "local" or "in-comer" and the pits (for example) were full of seen-as-strange in-comers so a "local" black man from Chatham (for example) with a North Kent accent might seem no more "exotic" than someone from the coalfields of South Wales / Derbyshire / Staffordshire / Lancashire / Yorkshire / Durham / Scotland. Or perhaps he arrived during the Second World War, when the mines were desperate for a new batch of in-comers, such as the Bevan Boys. WHY DIDN’T THE KNOBHEADED ORAL HISTORIAN WHO COLLECTED THIS STUFF ASK THE EYEWITNESS TO EXPAND ON THE LESS USUAL MATERIAL FFS?! /has the greatest respect for oral historians, especially the vast numbers of amateurs and self-reporters such as Mass Observationeers, BUT STILL //frustration

Albert Newton, transcribed in 2006, on a miner arriving at Betteshanger from South Wales: "One chap walked all the way from Merthyr Tydfil: Gerry Quick. It took him a month to walk. In 1926, feeling the pinch when the strike ended, he had heard of the Kent coalfield and decided to try his luck. He walked to Gloucester. It took him a week. He got a ride on an old banger, walked, and got lifts. He swept streets in Newbury for a while. He then got on a goods train to Croydon, going north, rather than south and east, by mistake. He rode in an empty wagon. He did fieldwork and he would knock on doors and say 'I am not a beggar, I am an out of work miner' He cut out a cardboard box and made inner soles for his shoes from it. He had not washed for a month by the time he arrived. He was hungry after 4 months of (1926) strike and one month of vagrancy. He hobbled up to the pit yard:

'Are you a miner?' they asked.

They called another Welshman, 'Taffy', to give him a hand.

'Look at the poor bugger's feet!'

'Take him to Mrs Jones and get him something to eat'.

Taffy and his mates acted like gentlemen towards Gerry. Everybody wanted to take him home to stay at their house! He was kept for 2 weeks and did not pay one penny, such was the hospitality. After 4 days rest he then showed up, got a lamp and started work".

[I note that the miners walking from the North-East were more likely to follow a coast for part of the way so they turned up cleaner because they bathed in the sea. Srsly, the locals still remember this level of detail.]

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11:45 am Fri 8/8/14 - In which there is a rabbit pooka
- Doing naarmamo: sometimes I have these odd dreams that I’m part of a support group with a little girl called Alice, a middle-aged drunk called Elwood, and a weird kid called Donnie. /rabbit pooka

Harvey the rabbit companion of Alice, Elwood, and Donnie?

Harvey the scabrous bunny and his cocky friend

1 more image, but no more nightmare fuel.Collapse )

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- Doing, this week so far in review.

Monday: went to pub, and then went nightclimbing. \o/ also :-D

Tuesday: evening photo stroll, with the theme of "details", which I rly enjoyed.

Wednesday: crawled out of bed, unwell, and dealt with necessary ppl stuff like a pretend grown-up. The only household chore I absolutely had to get done, for [REASONS], was washing-up but I didn’t have enough energy until evening and it took me twice as long as usual because I was so uncoordinated (but I didn’t break anything, thankfully).

Thursday: crawled out of bed, extremely unwell, dealt with necessary ppl stuff like a pretend grown-up (except I had to hang-up on an important incoming phonecall and ask them to ring me back another day, !SWEARS!), extremely unwell, utterly fubared. Rhyme or reason: none that I'm aware of (I’m only marginally more stressed than usual, and it’s not especially hot, &c).

- Doing naarmamo: more gateposts from my recent photo walk + some basic processing (subject and processing style chosen because I’m unwell and *literally* can’t see straight, lol).

Owl

Lion

Lion… IN COLOUR! [Police Squad theme music].Collapse )

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- Doing naarmamo: a dragon and something that amused me while I was capping the dragon.

Dragon

Let’s hope they don’t "give way"…. ;-)

Let's hope they don't give way

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(If you’re determined to see today’s naart.)

I rode the number 8A anticlockwise circular bus route around the Birmingham "inner circle", much of it on the "middleway" ringroad, and then I rode the 8C clockwise because, unlike from the front of the 11C double decker, from the back of a single decker I could only see one side at a time. The complete circle is a mere 60ish stops either way. I enjoyed it much more than the 11C. All the caps were taken from the bus except the one that says it’s from a bus stop and the GIANT garden plant because that was the most interesting thing I saw so I alighted to fully investigate as per standard [community profile] flaneurs instructions. Bus photography: it’s like horse archery inna wai.

Apparently the night before I did this flan there was a massed fight, reputedly involving a couple of hundred men and resulting in two stabbings and a shooting, in Sparkbrook just one road away from the route of the number 8 buses. I have to say that I didn’t so much as hear one young man use a single swear word on or off the bus all day and, unlike the 11C, there were no men shouting aggressively into their phones.

On the way to my starting point a woman sat next to me reading a book so I glanced across and saw: "She liked the sound of the word 'longing' ". My bus stop for departure and direction of travel was chosen by where the route overlapped with the bus I arrived on, so I caught the 8A from Islington Row after waiting at a stop with a fine view of Five Ways Tower.

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10 wall-painted sign for Gold Flake, Birmingham 07-14

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