Tuesday, 29 January 2013

Mrs D Ponders Crime: Peter Leonard "Voices Of The Dead"

A fast-paced tale that to and fros between 1970s Detroit and 1940s Munich. Much murder and mayhem of the cold-blooded kind.

You can read a review over at Eurocrime....
along with loads of information for eurocrime addicts and lots of other crime fiction reviews....

Monday, 28 January 2013

The Old Man's Avatar Gets A Skin

Mrs D do give The New Old Man some skin-covering by using material from a pair of old nylon tights. How useful old tights be!

As is her habit... and as you can see..... Mrs D do like to add nipples.... and a navel.... courtesy of her basic embroidery skills.

And that be not all that she do add to The New Old Man.
That Mrs D....

Saturday, 26 January 2013

The Old Man's Avatar Gets A Head

Yes it's true.
Mrs D do fashion a basic head shape by fusing Polymorph plastic onto the wire neck. She do separate the strands of wire in order to give more purchase for the plastic.

The New Old Man do look suitably alarmed to view the world for the first time.

Thursday, 24 January 2013

Madam Deficit Observes Cornwall Council's Trust In Their Claimants

In case you have not heard... our wonderful Unitary Council (no  Local Councils in the Duchy of  Cornwall)... [Correction: No"District" Councils] .... has hired Capita to use Voice Risk Analysis (aka crazy "lie-detector" technology) for telephone interviews with claimants of single person discount on council tax. (25% off if you live alone.) The system apparently works on detecting stress in the voice... presumably as an indication of lying..... Oh if only we could use the same (doubtless faultless) technology on politicians... both national and local.

Anyway... it do cause the Conservative Leader of the Council to quit.[Correction: Leader of the Conservative Group on the Council.... My! But I do get sloppy in my annoyance.]

Wednesday, 23 January 2013

The Old Man's Avatar Gets Some Substance...

One day he may even get a head....

When Mrs D can work out precisely what is required of a head.

Tuesday, 22 January 2013

Building Up The Old Man's New "Avatar"

It goes slowly cos of other things getting in the way... but first the legs and arms and spine get connected. (In two strands 2mm aluminium twisted together.) Then some kind of hand arrangement which involves two strands 1mm aluminium twisted.

Then Mrs D do use Polymorph plastic to form "bones" that strengthen the wire and help make the "joints" crisper when they are bent. See he has Polymorph "palms" for his hands too.

Polymorph is a polyester plastic which is supplied as grains. These melt in water at 62C and can be moulded together and shaped. The result can also be remelted and remoulded....
and the plastic is listed as biodegradable.

Whatever.... The Old Man be looking forward to an "atavar" (sic) without a wonky hip.

.... As is Mrs D.

Monday, 21 January 2013

My Dears.... These Computers...

I'll give Windows Backup and its hours of gathering its petticoats together only to refuse to put it on the disk.... or to demand another disk cos it's taken against the one it happily spoke to last time.... or to demand a labelled disk.... or to refuse to format a new one.

Quelle horreur.... I do go on line and get another backup package...

So instead of giving you a jolly and informative blog post about what I do not know...
I be sat on top of me electric fire... freezing me fingers off attempting to back things up in as many ways as I can think of cos I'm that kind of girl...

Cold... innit.

Tuesday, 15 January 2013

A Very Old Man with Enormous Wings Trailer

Kneehigh & Little Angel Theatre Coming To Tremough Campus in March

Kneehigh Thetare are bringing their production "A Very Old Man With Enormous Wings" to the Performance Centre of UCF at Tremough Campus, Penryn March 5th-9th 2013.

A puppet based production inspired by a Gabriel Garcia Marquez story - I've found a trailer for you to watch. Me being a bit of a Kneehigh fan... not to mention a sucker for puppets and automata and animation and suchlike.... I have already booked for me and The Old Man.

What do you mean "naturally I would like puppets, wouldn't I" ?

Monday, 14 January 2013

The Old Man Goes Stir Crazy

Normally The Old Man lives to drive to a shop. It is not just the shopping that he do live for you understand. It be the driving also. But recently the car starts to make a strange sound.... And the garage says: "Bearings." The car must come in for repairs for a couple of days.

The calculations for catching a bus back from delivering the car by 8.30 a.m. are made and soon the deed is done. And  then....
The Old Man goes stir crazy.
He has no means to get anywhere except shank's pony (it be raining all the time) or.... The Bus.

The Bus.
We do look at the time table again.
...(Where I do find that the Bus Company have already removed the "reinstated" through-bus to Truro for instance... and have replaced it with the old system of changing buses. The journey will take one and a half hours each way. Admittedly this be an improvement on the two hour changing-bus journey it used to be... nevertheless... I am not so sure about plans to meet up with a friend for lunch. Three hours travelling for lunch? Well at least I do not have a medical appointment at the Hospital. Been there... done that... not fun. And I could read a book.... perhaps finish it whilst about it. And I do be a privileged money-wasting pensioner what do get a bus pass, hence the journey do not cost me the £7 or £8 or so that it probably be by now.)

One day into his driving "cold-turkey" experience, The Old Man breaks..... consults the bus timetable and sets off into the damp gloom for his two hour round journey to pick up the newspaper from the shop four miles down the road. Me? I's just relieved that he do leave the house after all that pacing around....and wondering when the garage will ring.... And I do find that it be true that The Old Man is also addicted to newspapers.

After another twenty-four hours of agony The Old Man sprints out of the door when the call from the repairs shop comes.... to collect his beloved vehicle of independence. He leaves his lunch on the worktop. The front door crashes shut. He do work out he can just catch the Next Bus.....

Friday, 11 January 2013

The Old Man's New "Atavar" (sic) Takes Shape

Still much wrestlin' goin' on with wires and stuff.

The Old Man do want Mrs D to measure him for accuracy. She do say there is a limit....

...And the word be AVATAR not ATAVAR.

Monday, 7 January 2013

Mrs D Struggles With Her Wires

Mrs D do exclaim that she shall...
"Start the New Year as she means to go on..." which means mending The Old Man and getting on with the animating thing. In fact this means that she do spend a lot of time shouting and weeping that she... "Can't do this!!" whilst she wrestles with tiny (4mm) grub screws and allen keys ... and would-be "legs" drop off their brass "pelvises" at the rate of nineteen to the dozen.

Grub screw (Wikipedia)
Allen key (Wikipedia)

Mrs D do fortify herself with leftover Christmas port whilst real-life Old Man tries to calm her hysterical outbursts (for she be also her mother's daughter) and explains strategies for dealing with lively little grub screws like putting them into place in the joints first, whether she needs them or not.

Common sense and intuition from Mrs D's creative brain eventually wins out and she realises that the mock-up won't work until she uses the proper gauge of twisted wire... which she finds after rummaging around in her workroom....

Now she has succeeded in producing the rather eery spectacle of a disembodied spine and set of wire legs standing in their steel and brass "shoes" on the dining table.

None of us know how we feel about that.

Friday, 4 January 2013

Sticks And Stones And Wires And Bones

Mrs D's "Armature Kit" order do arrive yesterday. Very toot sweet.

This is a basic kit. Proper ones come with all sorts of rotating ball joints so that elbows and arms and knees can move in the right way. This one will depend on bendy wires (twisted aluminium). Which is why The Old Man's leg do drop off at Christmas when the wire do give up the ghost and break. (Protest at being bent about all the time.) But this kit comes with brass thingummys to screw wires into at hips and shoulders which should mean that you can fit a new arm or leg if something breaks. Mind you... means you have to be able to get at the joint under the body form and covering.

Steel feet plates you can screw the leg wires into... that are pre-drilled for bolt and wing-nut tie-downs or can be used with a magnet to hold in place onto the set floor.... Ha! "Set Floor".... who are we kidding....

So anyway we's all ready for the remodelling of The Old Man. Who do look nervous at the prospect.

Wednesday, 2 January 2013

January 2nd And I do Say....

.....Hello my dears and here we do go again.

Putting the rubbish out this mornin' (Old Year), I do spy a primrose (New Year)... although it do try to hide its head under its leaves.... after the stuff what do go on in 2012 what do you expect? The rain, the floods and all sorts of dreadful stuff. Yes I do include the ill-thought-out, knee-jerk-rubbish Mr Smoothy-Face Cammo and his governing cohorts do come out with an' all.

Oh Fine, you do say. January the Second and already she be going on about stuff. Bang. Bang.

Anyway... have observed Mrs D getting her pantaloons in a twist considering the remake of The Old Man and attempting to purchase a basic kit for keeping his legs and arms on. The Old Men (both "avatar" and "analogue" be apprehensive.)