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Showing posts from December, 2020

Suzuki Jimny 2007 Mk3 1.3-litre Petrol JLX 4X4

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It is said that the cars we drive say a lot about us. I own a 14 year old Suzuki Jimny. Make of that what you will. The year 2020 saw the Suzuki Jimny celebrating its 50th anniversary. The third-generation model, of which mine is an example, was launched in 1998. That design remained fundamentally unchanged until 2018. You may be unimpressed and think it a box on wheels, but I believe its chunkiness adds to its quirky charm. Well, many modern cars do look identical, don't they? I recall that as a boy and probably up to the late 1970s I could identify just about any model on the road. Is it because in those days designs were more distinctive and style was not necessarily constrained by price? Returning to the Jimny. It isn’t economical and the road handling is dismal, in fact bordering on life-threatening if you don't learn to accept and deal with its idiosyncrasies. Drivers must be wary of poor grip and a disturbing body roll on bends. The ladder frame chassis and th

HMS Hermes, Horse's Necks and a Jolly to Gibraltar

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In the mid-1960s I was aboard HMS Hermes sailing to Gibraltar. Photographs taken at that time appear elsewhere in my blog. As for my being on that ship, it was because I was employed by the Ministry of Defence as an armament supply officer and the authorities in their wisdom elected to send me on a jolly to Gibraltar. Apart from getting under everyone's feet taking snaps I was introduced as a guest of the Royal Navy to the favourite wardroom cocktail. The Horse's Neck. The cocktail originated in America towards the end of the 19th century. As consumed by officers of the Royal Navy it consists of a mix of brandy and ginger ale over ice. Ideally a long strip of lemon peel should protrude from the glass. That gives the drink its name. Angostura bitters are optional. The Royal Navy has long entertained wardroom guests with this drink. As evidence of its historical popularity, reference is often made to a scene in the film Yangtse Incident in which an officer is seen to orde

The Getty Museum Quarantine Challenge

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The Paul Getty Museum in Los Angeles was forced to close in 2020 as coronavirus spread throughout America. They found a way to sustain the public's interest in art during the pandemic by issuing the "Getty Museum Challenge." Followers on social media were invited to recreate works of art within their home. I looked around my house to see what objects I could use to replicate famous paintings. These are my efforts. I suppose that the best that can be said is that at least I tried! If you are uncertain, the original painting precedes my creation in each pair of images. It's time to slip into pretentious arty bollocks mode. Rembrandt , Portrait of a Man. The composition is such that this dramatic and handsome figure is not frozen but rather potentially dynamic, whilst the hyper-realistic detail is the mark of genius... and Rembrandt did OK as well. Kadinsky , Squares with Concentric Circles. These shapes and colours are said to trigger a deep internal resonance and