Smoking: a cool image?

20101101 Cool Smoking Face 300x225 Smoking: a cool image?Before the smoking ban came into force I don’t remember seeing these bins outside pubs much. I’m not a smoker myself, though I have enjoyed the odd cigar in the past – inside pubs, of course. On the one hand I think the ban has taken some of the atmosphere aware from bars, but on the other hand smoking is unhealthy and it is probably for the better. Rights and wrongs and politics aside, the design of this particular bin is striking, in that it looks vaguely like a “cool dude” wearing sunglasses with a fag in its mouth. Whether … Click to read more

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20101031 Thekla Numerous Faces 300x225 TheklaEver been to the Thekla in Bristol? Have you ever noticed the faces with their mouths open on the top deck? The Thekla is an interesting concept and it’s a very popular venue. I have been in there a few times and it has always been absolutely rammed. The club nights are not really my scene but it’s worth going for the experience. Funnily enough, I never knew they did gigs in there until recently, when I saw The Bluetones were playing there. Sadly I had missed it by several months. I used to love The Bluetones – and still … Click to read more

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Blue’s the new grey

20101031 Psychopathic Robots in Bristol City Centre 300x225 Blues the new greyAnyone familiar with the centre of Bristol will undoubtedly have noticed the new Radisson Blu Hotel in what used to be the Bristol & West Building Society offices. I once read some architectural spiel somewhere about the cladding, that it was clad in varying shades of blue to make it blend in with the sky, so as not to be as intrusive. To be honest, when it had the exposed aggregate concrete finish for years, it stood out like a sore thumb and no-one cared… In any case, with the weather we get in this country (i.e. grey skies), making … Click to read more

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20101030 Abstract Building Catenary 225x300 Hyperbole?I was walking through Castle Park in Bristol City Centre the other day and looked at the Finzels Reach development, which they seem to have been building forever. As a Structural Engineer I do take an interest in buildings, particularly in their unfinished state and took a moment to look at the temporary works keeping up the existing facade. I spotted the adjacent building and noticed a smiling face formed by two windows making eyes, with a cable forming a smiling mouth. I do like a hyperbolic cosine… Geek? No, chic!… Click to read more

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Technology overkill

20101020 Romsey Handwash Station 225x300 Technology overkillYou know those clever handwash stations, where you stick your hands in and they automatically dispense soap onto your sleeve, drench you and then proceed to apply heat to bake the soap onto your clothes? Is it me, or is it technology for the sake of it? Apart from this they have another downside to them in that the user is forced to hog one appliance for the duration of its operational sequence. In other words, whilst one person is drying their hands, the next person can’t wash theirs. A particular annoyance is when someone doesn’t finish the “drying cycle” … Click to read more

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A cross between an armchair and a moped…

20101020 Nissan Freelander Psychopathic Killer Robot 300x225 A cross between an armchair and a moped...These days I tend to drive a lot of hire cars, so much that the staff of all three branches of the hire car company that I frequent seem to recognise me. It always tends to be pot luck as to what vehicle I get and I have driven anything from as small as a Toyota Aygo (a delightful cross between an armchair and a moped) to a Seat Alhambra. The other day I got a Nissan Freelander. It was absolutely mohusive and reminded me of The Simpsons episode Screaming Yellow Honkers where Homer buys a Canyonero F series. I … Click to read more

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Bag lady

20101016 Handbag 300x225 Bag ladyI looked at my friend’s handbag in the pub the other and noticed it staring back at me. Its lips look wrinkled, rather like an elderly lady. Bag + Lady = Bag Lady. What else can I say?… Click to read more

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Another dimension

20101014 Oce Scanner Console 300x225 Another dimensionForget looking at things from different angles (A Different Perspective and Part 2), the new perspective is 3D, apparently. This seems to be all the rage at the cinema these days. The only film I have seen in 3D so far is Clash of the Titans. I can’t remember the story. I have an appalling memory for films and film “stars” and have been told by someone I know that I am the least star-struck person they have ever met. I always proudly tell everyone I didn’t recognise Tom Cruise in Lions for Lambs. This cheeky … Click to read more

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A Different Perspective Part 2

20101013 Fridge Door Handle 300x225 A Different Perspective Part 2In my previous post, A Different Perspective, I talked about tilting my head to reveal an image of a face where otherwise the image didn’t exist. Well, I spent the next two days walking around with a tilted head. Nah, that’s a lie. I wish I had, though. Imagine the looks you’d get from people and then having to explain that you’ve been “seeing things” and you’re “looking for faces”. Hmmm… yes… This whole thing reminded me of a conversation I once had with my brother (I think). It went along the lines of: if you’re lying down on … Click to read more

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A Different Perspective

20101010 Front Door Lock 2 300x225 A Different PerspectiveHaving blogged about the front door lock in Born to be grumpy I noticed the other half of the lock on the door jamb. Well, it’s a just a bit of metal with a “sticky-out” bit and a couple of holes – so what? Then I rotated my head (or rather, mentally rotated the image) by 90 degrees and found what appeared to be a builder wearing a hard hat. It’s funny how your perception of things can be very different from one moment to the next. It kind of reminds me of the Young Girl/Old Woman optical illusion: … Click to read more

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