Thursday, May 31, 2007

Achtung Shweinehund



Great little insight into the childhoods of my generation of British boys on the back of the TLS. I was a great reader of Commando. In fact, I am a little ashamed to admit that the last copy I bought was about 3 years ago when I saw it in a newsagent. Read it cover to cover.

It is striking how little modern violence there is in children's toys in Japan. I suppose it is predictable, given their recent experience of war, but boyhood aggression is almost all channeled into either samurai stuff or science fiction fighting heroes like Ultraman.



I think more recent generations have less of a taboo about modern war. There are now a few manga and films about WWII. But the only things I have found for making a war mongering nut out of my son are the odd packet of little plastic ninja and samurai figures and a very basic polystyrene British Spitfire. Perhaps I should add a subscription to Commando to my TLS. It is now going for £1.20 a copy. Jeekers! Could nearly have bought a model of the Enola Gay Superfortress for that back in the old days.

Friday, May 25, 2007

The Really Revolutionary Engine

One of my Dadly duties is reading Thomas the Tank Engine books. G. loves Thomas (although I'm very glad to say that Mr Tickle, an altogether more admirable character, has recently stolen a lot of Thomas's limelight).

Anyway, I have to read these stories, so I decided to write my own Thomas story with a difference: "The Really Revolutionary Engine".

The album below is not really designed for reading a book. You need to scroll down until you see the black space just below the panel and press the play arrow in the middle of the panel. Put your cursor in the black space. This should bring up the control arrows. Press pause and then click the right button to flip pages.



PS. I chopped up the illustrations from a load of different Thomas books that we have and rearranged them with my own text. Of course, the illustrations are nicked from other people far more talented that me: Robin Davies and Jerry Smith, who illustrated the My Thomas Story Library published by Egmont.

Monday, May 21, 2007

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Loose socks



Loose socks are a thing among Japanese school girls. This Wikipedia article explains them well. The idea is that you wear very long, very loose socks with your shortened school skirt. They have been around for ages but I hadn`t realised just how long they could be.

The picture above is of loose socks being sold in a mall near here. The longest ones there are 150 cm long! That is taller than a lot of the girls themselves. Either they are catering to a niche market of gargantuan Japanese schoolgirls (scary) or there are a lot of folds in them there loose socks.

Monday, May 07, 2007

The company-less office!



At last, I have found a office-like space where I can work outside my home as a freelancer, allowing me to have a social life, to network, to enjoy some separation between home and work etc. etc. without having to tie myself to some corporate behemoth.

I have been thinking for ages that in an internet connected world the identification of all office spaces with particular businesses was a bit old hat. Also, because it entails long commutes to a central location rather than a walk round the corner to the nearest co-working community, it is quite bad for the environment and stressful for the workers. Now people are loosening the connection. Only problem: my nearest coworking spaces seem to be a few thousand miles away.
The photo is of this co-working space in San Francisco.

Friday, May 04, 2007

Fast

If only I could write my stuff this fast:



Doing a lot of "silly" tagged posts at the moment. Sorry. Distracted. Or maybe that's better.

Wednesday, May 02, 2007

Quick save Fred!




Its was all your fault in the first place, so the least you could do is try to do something to help him!

Do you take that man`s brother to be your lawfully...

This is one of those foreigners do funny things stories but, apart from wondering about what it must be like to go to your brother`s wedding and end up in the bridal bed, I liked the irony of the final words of the article:
"[The groom] has been crying that word will spread and he will never get a bride again."
Well, you could say that word has spread... unimaginably.