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Mark Hooper has been shared in 179 public circles

You can see here the 50 latest shared circles.
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AuthorFollowersDateUsers in CircleCommentsReshares+1Links
Olga Kafka24,049Circle #shoesmonday #1 in gratitude for participation in them Shoes Monday~Many Thanks everyone!!!!!!2014-12-07 15:36:21497000
Colin Wilson10,036This circle contains people who are very active on Google+If you received a notification, please reshare to your circlesIf you’d like to be added to the next circle share: • +1 this circle • Share this circle to PUBLIC • Include me in your circles • Comment on this post#circle #Sharedcircles #circleshare #publiccircle #followme #public #sharedpubliccircles #circleoftheday #circleall #circlecircle #circleday2014-11-27 13:06:50466437
Olga Kafka23,632Circle #shoesmonday #1 in gratitude for participation in them Shoes Monday~Many Thanks everyone!!!!!!2014-11-09 16:18:52497104
Olga Kafka23,240 Circle #shoesmonday #1 in gratitude for participation in them Shoes Monday~Many Thanks everyone!2014-10-28 14:50:34496002
Olga Kafka22,937Circle #shoesmonday #1 in gratitude for participation in them Shoes Monday~Many Thanks everyone!2014-10-15 10:08:39495002
Olga Kafka22,931Circle #shoesmonday #1 in gratitude for participation in them Shoes Monday~Many Thanks everyone!2014-10-12 11:29:06495005
Olga Kafka22,946Circle #shoesmonday #1 in gratitude for participation in them Shoes Monday~Many Thanks everyone!2014-10-07 07:15:41496206
Olga Kafka22,889Circle #shoesmonday #1 in gratitude for participation in them Shoes Monday~Many Thanks everyone!2014-10-05 15:19:47496002
Gert Jan Hermus35,331You are in one of my circles of photographers, bloggers, circle sharers and engagers!Reshare this one for the best result ;-)#circle   #circleshare   #circlesharing   #circles   #circleoftheday   #fridaycircle   #reshare   #5blkr  2014-09-19 19:00:35455182131
Olga Kafka22,894Circle #shoesmonday #1 in gratitude for participation in them Shoes Monday~Many Thanks everyone!2014-09-19 17:08:224963211
Olga Kafka22,840Circle #shoesmonday #1 in gratitude for participation in them Shoes Monday~Many Thanks everyone!2014-09-03 06:36:42496218
Olga Kafka22,766 Circle #shoesmonday #1 in gratitude for participation in them Shoes Monday~Many Thanks everyone!2014-08-26 08:03:25495006
Olga Kafka22,787Circle #shoesmonday #1 in gratitude for participation in them Shoes Monday~Many Thanks everyone!2014-08-19 10:42:424960112
Olga Kafka22,774Circle #shoesmonday #1 in gratitude for participation in them Shoes Monday~Many Thanks everyone!2014-08-13 13:09:434962010
Olga Kafka22,802Circle #shoesmonday #1 in gratitude for participation in them Shoes Monday~Many Thanks everyone!2014-08-05 18:50:244961111
Olga Kafka22,808Circle #shoesmonday #1 in gratitude for participation in them Shoes Monday~Many Thanks everyone!2014-07-25 07:56:234962216
Doug Hyatt5,572THIS IS MEGA CIRCLE 12  #DOUGHYATTCIRCLESHARING I AM GETTING 1,000+ FOLLOWERS A WEEK FROM THIS!  1) ADD THE CIRCLE2) RESHARE THE CIRCLE AND BE SURE TO REMEMBER TO CHECK THE BOX WHICH INCLUDES YOURSELF.3)RESHARE TO PUBLIC EVERY DAY!BE SURE TO COPY THE HASHTAG LIST AND ADD IN YOUR COMMENTS LIKE I HAVE!  IT WILL GIVE YOU MAXIMUM RESULTS#doughyattcirclesharing#circles   #circlemania   #circletoday   #circleplus   #circleshare   #circlesharing   #CircleSharing   #sharecircle   #sharecirclethis   #worldsharecircle   #pleasecircleaddme   #circleoftheday   #newgenerationcircle  #monstercircle   #usacircle   #bestofthecircle   #shareofthecircle   #pleasecircle   #newbestcircl  add circle add circle * best share circle * share please pleaseplease add circle * best share circle * share please please#add #circle   #addcircle   #pleasecircle   #bestcircle   #mostcircle  #bestsharecircle   #newcircle   #top100circle   #best500circle   #top500circle   2014-07-19 21:28:014624210
Roman Kruglov19,073My #streetphotography  Circle #circleshare   #circlesharing   #street   #streettogs   #streetphotographer2014-07-18 02:58:03297524
Olga Kafka22,815Circle #shoesmonday #1 in gratitude for participation in them Shoes Monday~Many Thanks everyone!2014-07-08 07:35:514974115
Olga Kafka22,827Circle #shoesmonday #1 in gratitude for participation in them Shoes Monday~Many Thanks everyone!2014-07-01 06:09:424972012
James Wilson245Sharing Sunday. Hope everyone has a great week. Add, plus and share#Circle   #circleshare   #circlesharing   #circleoftheday   #shared   #sharedcircles   #sharedpubliccircles   #sharedcircleoftheday   #sharedpublicircles   #sharing   #sharingcircles 2014-06-29 14:58:28473424
Olga Kafka22,740Circle #shoesmonday #1 in gratitude for participation in them Shoes Monday~Many Thanks everyone!2014-06-22 21:35:574983014
John Wood8,050Follow this advice and grow your G+ community with people that share amazing content that will surprise you:Boost your visibility on Google+ - Share the circle!If you received the notice you are in this circle, then well done.If you would like to be included in the next Circle Share you only have to do these simple steps:1 - Include me in your circles (If you haven't already)2 - Share the circle (Publicly) - (cc) me ( ) in the comments on the share and I can add you to the next circle immediately.    _ Otherwise I may not notice your activity!_3 - Add +1 to the post.4 - Leave a comment if you like#circleshare #circlesharing #sharedcircles #sharingcircles #sharedpubliccircles #sharedcircleoftheday #circlesunday #share #shared #followers #addcircles #publicsharedcircles #share #addpeople #addcircle #addfriends #circle #socialmedia2014-06-20 10:26:17472211838
Olga Kafka22,635Circle #shoesmonday #1 in gratitude for participation in them Shoes Monday~Many Thanks everyone!2014-06-10 14:34:29499009
Olga Kafka22,608Circle #shoesmonday #1 in gratitude for participation in them Shoes Monday~Many merci everyone!2014-06-04 20:11:154991112
Marius Gheghici3,986Hi guys,This is an amazing circle with great Irish people. Please add them.+1 my post, comment. Then Share the circle with your connections and don't forget to include yourself in this shared circle!2014-05-28 12:30:58261224
Olga Kafka22,603Circle #shoesmonday #1 in gratitude for participation in them Shoes Monday~Many merci everyone!2014-05-27 21:07:094991210
Olga Kafka22,624Circle #shoesmonday #1 in gratitude for participation in them Shoes Monday~Many merci everyone!2014-05-23 19:27:23499209
Olga Kafka22,658Circle #shoesmonday #1 in gratitude for participation in them Shoes Monday~Many merci everyone!2014-05-15 06:08:515001113
Monochrome World8,935April 2014 ContributorsAmazing contributions in April. 2014. Thank you so much for taking the time to share your beautiful and inspiring work. You're deeply appreciated. Please keep tagging us with +Monochrome World and #monochromeworld  as It makes it easier to find your posts if you do so.You beat all contributors records this month! Amazing.Please be sure to add our page to your circles in our for us to add you to the Contributors Circle.  You're re-share is appreciated. +Circles Circles Circles  #circleshare   #sharingcircles  +Circle Mag +Shared Circles Magic G+ 2014-05-06 01:38:4141912062173
Olga Kafka22,567Circle #shoesmonday #1 in gratitude for participation in them Shoes Monday~Many merci everyone!2014-04-29 10:49:285002015
Shoes Monday3,169Thank you circle #shoesmonday   #1 2014-04-06 07:55:55484208
Olga Kafka22,293Circle #shoesmonday #1 in gratitude for participation in them Shoes Monday~Many merci everyone!2014-04-01 18:31:11486108
John Nuntiatio31,443#circles #sharedcircles #circlesharing #circle #circleoftheday #bestofcircles #bestcircleshare #share #tech #business #sport #health  2014-03-28 05:44:19478221431
Olga Kafka22,213Circle #shoesmonday #1 in gratitude for participation in them Shoes Monday~Many merci everyone!2014-03-25 17:58:334862012
Olga Kafka22,084 Circle #shoesmonday #1 in gratitude for participation in them Shoes Monday~Many merci everyone!2014-03-11 15:00:044864016
Olga Kafka21,887Circle #shoesmonday #1 in gratitude for participation in them Shoes Monday~Many merci everyone!2014-03-04 19:25:234812111
Roman Kruglov17,957My ever growing #streetphotographers  circle #circleshare   #circleoftheday  2014-02-27 16:47:312949412
Artist , photographer , amateur or professional2,174Circle photographer +Artist , photographer , amateur or professional by +jany viala   & +Krzysztof Felczak   you presentiment 892  photographer, two circle provenent +Artist , photographer , amateur or professional  very talented presentation of this circle * Artist Photographer Amateur or Professional *. * Artist *: we sum all. That is why I have included our painter friends. * Photographer *: we all have one thing in common, we like the photo. * Amateur *: we have the desire to learn. * Professional *: we are surrounded by great photographer. And I thank you for following us on this adventure. Thank you my friends.  +jany viala & +Krzysztof Felczak   sharing your artistic work in page #artistphotographeramateurorprofessional     +Artist , photographer , amateur or professional  by +jany viala    & +Krzysztof Felczak  make us a photo selection for +A.P.A.P.Grand talent   Do not forget Tag your photos #artistphotographeramateurorprofessional     +Artist , photographer , amateur or professional   by +jany viala   and +Krzysztof Felczak  For selection +A.P.A.P.Grand talent  Thank you Community 2014-02-25 09:35:0445624620
Olga Kafka21,779 Circle #shoesmonday #1 in gratitude for participation in them Shoes Monday~Many merci everyone!2014-02-25 09:29:394813114
Circle to Circle0Let's start the new week with an amazing circle of Engagers!!#sharedcircles   #sharedpubliccircles   #circleshare   #circlesharing   #awesomepeople   #followers   #people   #enthusiast   #share   #topengagers  2014-02-24 19:44:4045423833
Artist , photographer , amateur or professional2,143Circle photographer +Artist , photographer , amateur or professional   by +jany viala  & +Krzysztof Felczak  you presentiment 892  photographer, two circle provenent +Artist , photographer , amateur or professional  very talented presentation of this circle * Artist Photographer Amateur or Professional *. * Artist *: we sum all. That is why I have included our painter friends. * Photographer *: we all have one thing in common, we like the photo. * Amateur *: we have the desire to learn. * Professional *: we are surrounded by great photographer. And I thank you for following us on this adventure. Thank you my friends.  +jany viala  & +Krzysztof Felczak  sharing your artistic work in page #artistphotographeramateurorprofessional   +Artist , photographer , amateur or professional  by +jany viala  & +Krzysztof Felczak  make us a photo selection for +A.P.A.P.Grand talent  Do not forget Tag your photos #artistphotographeramateurorprofessional   +Artist , photographer , amateur or professional by +jany viala and +Krzysztof Felczak For selection +A.P.A.P.Grand talent  Thank you Community 2014-02-24 08:55:5445334418
Cristian Teodoridis2,869This is a great circle if you are interested in Street Photography. Enjoy! :)2014-02-19 14:13:00472003
Olga Kafka21,677Circle #shoesmonday #1 in gratitude for participation in them Shoes Monday~Many merci everyone!2014-02-18 08:28:334874217
Edith Kukla44,924CIRCLE SHARING TIME - HAPPY VALENTINELong time ago after my last circle sharing! Here is No. 2 of 4 photographer circles. All include a lot of the best photographers in G+. So I can say TOP CIRCLES!If you want a very interesting and beautiful stream, add it to your circles and help spread the beauty. If you want to be include in one of the 4 circles, please give a comment, a + 1 and share it. And please remember - sharing is caring :-)))  #mycircles   #circlesharing   #sharethelove  2014-02-14 10:31:4048913052139
Circle your Circle with Circles!!!!0Follow this advice and grow your G+ community with people that share amazing content that will surprise you:Boost your visibility on Google+ - Share the circle!To be added to the Circle you have to do these simple steps:1 - include me in your circles 2 - Click add people and create your circle3 - share the circle (include yourself) 4 - add +1 to the post More you share more you get!#circles   #circleshare   #circlesharing   #sharedcircles #sharingcircles   #sharedpubliccircles   #sharedcircleoftheday #circlesunday   #share   #shared   #followers   #addcircles #publicsharedcircles   #share   #addpeople   #addcircle #addfriends   #circle   #empireavenue   #socialmedia     #influencers   #influencer   #influence   #influencermarketing #sundaycircle   #circlesunday   #circlesundaycircle  2014-02-11 03:54:23451362346
Olga Kafka21,487Circle #shoesmonday #1 in gratitude for participation in them Shoes Monday~Many merci everyone!2014-02-05 10:34:3648811216
Olga Kafka21,404Circle #shoesmonday #1 in gratitude for participation in them Shoes Monday~Many merci everyone!2014-02-03 15:16:484886915
Gailen Mapes42,567Hand Picked Photographers Circles - Canon Camera G-K - 3 of 14Note: These circles are sorted by camera type and last name. They are split to not exceed 500 members.I am now sharing one circle per day, for the reason see:https://plus.google.com/u/0/103752943025677384806/posts/RrPNTzHhQuHAs before these circles are photographers that I admire. They also have "more photos, less spam." There have been many additions and a few drops (mostly for spam or inactivity).Be sure to get all 14 circles. Share! If you miss any of the circles they can be found at: +Gailen Mapes and scroll back to September 1st for the start of this set.  (Previous complete set was published starting August 15th.)  You can also use the #handpickedcircles hash tag.I am hard up against the 5000 limit. From here on, I am going to have to become rather more strict about the "spam rules." Essentially if I have to go back more than a screen on your profile before I hit original material, there is a good chance that I may drop you from the circles. Of course there will be mitigating factors...Because of the way that Google no longer presents every person who adds me to their circles to me it is quite possible that I have missed some pretty good photographers.  If I am following you, chances are that you are already in one of these circles or in my "check later" circle.  If you think you have been missed, tag a comment on one of these posts and I will check your profile out for inclusion.  Guidelines for inclusion can be found at:https://plus.google.com/u/0/103752943025677384806/about#circleshare #circlesharing #circleoftheday  #sharedcircles  #sharedcircle #sharedpubliccircles   #fullcircleshare #addmetoyourcircles #pixelworld   #pixelworldcircle #circleoftheday #bestsharedcircle  #thebestcirclesongoogle #thebestcircle  #handpickedcircles Note: the hash tag #handpickedcircles  should only be used to refer to these circles and other circles cre2013-09-03 17:01:222959410
Monochrome World3,450ONCE AGAIN... BEST EVERThank you to all August 2013 Contributors. We've seen some amazing work and lots of images with great power and imagination. You work and contributions are deeply appreciated. Sharing is CaringNow, if you would be so kind as to re-share this circle in your stream to let others know about this theme it would be awesome.  #circleshare   #circles  +Circles Circles Circles +CircleHub +Circle Master +Shared circles 2013-09-02 15:19:44282332540

Top posts in the last 50 posts

Most comments: 30

posted image

2014-02-02 14:05:45 (30 comments, 2 reshares, 53 +1s)Open 

Super Bowl Sunday

I'm one of those people. I'm a non-American who loves American Football. And today is the big day of the year for us fans of the sport closest to chess in padded armour there is (excluding actual chess in padded armour (which isn't half as exciting as it sounds)): it's Super Bowl Sunday!

I took the time to introduce my wife to the sport when we first started dating and I'm pleased to say that she's a massive fan of the game now too. Subsequently, we've entered into a little tradition in our home where the pair of us book the Monday following the game off and spend the entire day subjecting our bodies to the best and worst that America can offer from the food and drink aisles of the local supermarket. Note: there are some non-American drinks in there too; we're not completely crazy.

As for tonight's game, after some... more »

Most reshares: 8

posted image

2013-05-25 18:11:50 (6 comments, 8 reshares, 65 +1s)Open 

The Cone Of Shame

"I feel like an idiot."

"You're fine."

"I look stupid."

"You look fine. Trust me."

"No. I really look stupid. Everyone will stare at me."

"Nobody will pay you any attention. They've seen it all before. Hell, they've seen far worse."

"You're just saying that. I look stupid."

"You don't look stupid. Please, can we just go out?"

"I don't know if I can cope with people staring at me all the time."

"They won't notice you. I promise."

"You're just saying that."

"Look, I'll stick a transparent cone around my neck and nobody will even see your shoes."

"You'd do that for me?"
... more »

Most plusones: 79

posted image

2013-06-22 09:11:22 (6 comments, 3 reshares, 79 +1s)Open 

Public Displays Of Affection

It's interesting to see the different ways in which people show affection or react to public displays of affection while on the street.

Here we have a couple who are madly in lust with one another and who couldn't care less who sees them. And why should they? Good for them!

And there to the right is James who feels a little differently about things. James looks absolutely mortified. But then, James is being followed closely by a small, black, wheeled robot proclaiming its love for James in a shrill, electronic voice. James has probably been tinkering with the robot's emotion circuits and is now paying the price. Oh James, you silly person!

#StreetPhotography   +StreetPhotography curated by +Maria Roco  and +Tatiana Parmeeva 

Latest 50 posts

posted image

2014-11-16 19:21:41 (2 comments, 0 reshares, 26 +1s)Open 

Lyme Regis

Lyme Regis is a small, coastal town in Dorset, England. The town's name literally means "misspelt, small, green, citrus fruit named Regis" and it won it in a game of poker with twinned Yorkshire village Lemmin Geoff.

Lyme Regis is part of the south of England's famous Jurassic Coast, an area that stretches from Exmouth to Swanage most notable for existing simultaneously in our time period and a pleasant Thursday in the early spring of 153 million years ago. Lyme Regis is popular with tourists wishing to kill dinosaurs in Earth's distant past, skin them, eat them, then sell their cleaned skeletons in the town's many fossil shops.

#dorset #thecobb #sooc #justkiddingaboutitbeingsooc  

Lyme Regis

Lyme Regis is a small, coastal town in Dorset, England. The town's name literally means "misspelt, small, green, citrus fruit named Regis" and it won it in a game of poker with twinned Yorkshire village Lemmin Geoff.

Lyme Regis is part of the south of England's famous Jurassic Coast, an area that stretches from Exmouth to Swanage most notable for existing simultaneously in our time period and a pleasant Thursday in the early spring of 153 million years ago. Lyme Regis is popular with tourists wishing to kill dinosaurs in Earth's distant past, skin them, eat them, then sell their cleaned skeletons in the town's many fossil shops.

#dorset #thecobb #sooc #justkiddingaboutitbeingsooc  ___

posted image

2014-10-18 15:04:03 (2 comments, 0 reshares, 19 +1s)Open 

Pete Bennett

Pete won Big Brother in the UK in 2006 since when he's written books, performed as a solo artist and with bands, got married, is getting divorced, and generally done all the other sorts of things that celebrities do.

In addition to all that he campaigns for Greenpeace and it's in this capacity that my colleague and I spotted him in Chichester this week. I snapped a photo at distance which was spotted and this led to the amiable chap popping over to have a chat. Following some general chit-chat Pete then proceeded to tell me in fairly graphic detail how orangutans were sometimes shaved and prostituted out to perverts. I know how to bring out the odd in people. Very disturbing, and I suggested that he not lead with that story when approaching the old dears in the street to see if they wanted to sign up with the environmental organisation. I'm pretty sure... more »

Pete Bennett

Pete won Big Brother in the UK in 2006 since when he's written books, performed as a solo artist and with bands, got married, is getting divorced, and generally done all the other sorts of things that celebrities do.

In addition to all that he campaigns for Greenpeace and it's in this capacity that my colleague and I spotted him in Chichester this week. I snapped a photo at distance which was spotted and this led to the amiable chap popping over to have a chat. Following some general chit-chat Pete then proceeded to tell me in fairly graphic detail how orangutans were sometimes shaved and prostituted out to perverts. I know how to bring out the odd in people. Very disturbing, and I suggested that he not lead with that story when approaching the old dears in the street to see if they wanted to sign up with the environmental organisation. I'm pretty sure he was going to, though.

Breaking the habit of a lifetime (I'm very backward at coming forwards) I then asked if I could take a picture and he happily agreed. In hindsight perhaps waiting until after he'd finished his carrot might have made for a better street portrait shot.

#StreetPhotography #StreetPortrait #StreetPortraiture #BigBrother #Celebrity  ___

posted image

2014-08-25 19:24:50 (3 comments, 0 reshares, 15 +1s)Open 

Notting Hill Carnival

It was just a coincidence that we were up in London and in need of something to do for a few hours that we discovered the Notting Hill Carnival was actually taking place, and so we ventured across to experience the event for the first time.

My wife... did not like it. That's an understatement. She didn't like the noise, the heaving crowds, the apparent lack of fun many of the people seemed to be having, and the filth everywhere. Needless to say but these were all the things I absolutely loved about it. Beautifully-decorated floats and glamorous people dancing in flamboyant costumes can feature in other people's photos of carnivals but for me it was all about the attendees and their impact on the spectacle.

My only regret (other than possibly not ramping up the ISO a bit earlier to get some faster shots) is that I didn't know about... more »

Notting Hill Carnival

It was just a coincidence that we were up in London and in need of something to do for a few hours that we discovered the Notting Hill Carnival was actually taking place, and so we ventured across to experience the event for the first time.

My wife... did not like it. That's an understatement. She didn't like the noise, the heaving crowds, the apparent lack of fun many of the people seemed to be having, and the filth everywhere. Needless to say but these were all the things I absolutely loved about it. Beautifully-decorated floats and glamorous people dancing in flamboyant costumes can feature in other people's photos of carnivals but for me it was all about the attendees and their impact on the spectacle.

My only regret (other than possibly not ramping up the ISO a bit earlier to get some faster shots) is that I didn't know about the carnival earlier and didn't know anyone else going who'd share my love of the grit and grime so I could stay longer. Maybe next year, if I remember.

This is just a small selection of the photos I took. The full set is on my Flickr stream here: https://www.flickr.com/photos/neonbubble/sets/72157646841754622

[-]___

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2014-08-16 09:30:44 (15 comments, 0 reshares, 37 +1s)Open 

Socks And Sandals

Please be aware that legislation that comes into force today - the 16th of August, 2014 - now makes the wearing of socks with sandals a capital offence in this zone (Habitat Zone F).

The Public Foot Attire Beautification Act (2014) outlines the minimum punishment for any single infringement to be disembowelment, beheading, then belegging. Belegging is defined within the Act as "the removal of the limbs below the waist using a sharpened spatula and/or emery board."

Lesser offences within the Act include the wearing of socks pulled up greater than an inch above the shoe height. Punishment for this particular crime are discretionary depending on the level of public horror but can include up to 25 years of hard labour in Blackpool (Punishment Zone B).

Please be further aware that legislation due to soon come into force in this zone... more »

Socks And Sandals

Please be aware that legislation that comes into force today - the 16th of August, 2014 - now makes the wearing of socks with sandals a capital offence in this zone (Habitat Zone F).

The Public Foot Attire Beautification Act (2014) outlines the minimum punishment for any single infringement to be disembowelment, beheading, then belegging. Belegging is defined within the Act as "the removal of the limbs below the waist using a sharpened spatula and/or emery board."

Lesser offences within the Act include the wearing of socks pulled up greater than an inch above the shoe height. Punishment for this particular crime are discretionary depending on the level of public horror but can include up to 25 years of hard labour in Blackpool (Punishment Zone B).

Please be further aware that legislation due to soon come into force in this zone (Habitat Zone F) will also prohibit men from wearing shorts that do not reach the knee and will carry a mandatory punishment of emasculation.

Thank you for your attention. Your fellow citizens appreciate your adherence to the Act.___

posted image

2014-08-10 12:34:51 (3 comments, 1 reshares, 31 +1s)Open 

Surveillance

The van had been parked out there for days, made to look as if the owner or owners were elsewhere but we noticed tiny movements. We recorded them using an HD camera and passed them through a custom piece of software that recreated a simulation of the van's interior based on them. Two people, it reckoned, seated, occasionally turning in their swivel chairs, sometimes eating a little, sometimes drinking a little, sometimes performing that action that usually follows eating and drinking into a bag of some description. The atmospheric breakdown did not make for nice reading. Sleep, it seemed, was dissuaded using pills. One of the two people was claustrophobic but fighting through his fear because he needed the money the job was paying. The second person was depressed because nobody had remembered his birthday. It was a pretty detailed simulation.

We didn't know... more »

Surveillance

The van had been parked out there for days, made to look as if the owner or owners were elsewhere but we noticed tiny movements. We recorded them using an HD camera and passed them through a custom piece of software that recreated a simulation of the van's interior based on them. Two people, it reckoned, seated, occasionally turning in their swivel chairs, sometimes eating a little, sometimes drinking a little, sometimes performing that action that usually follows eating and drinking into a bag of some description. The atmospheric breakdown did not make for nice reading. Sleep, it seemed, was dissuaded using pills. One of the two people was claustrophobic but fighting through his fear because he needed the money the job was paying. The second person was depressed because nobody had remembered his birthday. It was a pretty detailed simulation.

We didn't know what they were after, why they had targeted us. We only knew that we didn't like being the subjects of surveillance and that inside that van it was... unpleasant. And so we decided to address both issues.

Overnight we baked a special cake and had it delivered to the van. The icing read "Sorry I forgot your birthday Tony." The courier knocked on the rear of the van several times before the doors were opened enough to accept the gift. We started up the HD recording again as the courier left, clutching his hand to his nose. We stopped recording when we heard a dull thump and saw the vehicle's panel closest to us buckle outwards slightly.

The simulation confirmed what we already knew: Tony was overjoyed that Graham had arranged for the cake although he admonished his junior partner for potentially ruining the surveillance. Graham hoped that Tony would favour him in any future promotion talks and so took the credit for the iced sponge. As Tony made the first slice, however, he exposed the cake's innards to the chemistry in the van's air. The reaction was intense as the cake expanded to over a thousand times its original size in the span of seconds. Every hole, every gap, every tiny crevice became clogged with cake.

Tony and Graham suffered just as much as the van but they did eventually eat their way clear. Graham's claustrophobia was cured but neither man would return to the world of surveillance again.___

posted image

2014-05-27 22:27:47 (1 comments, 0 reshares, 33 +1s)Open 

Eastney Beam Engine House

An ever-so-slightly processed (subtle, but if you look closely you can possibly tell) shot of the Eastney Beam Engine House in Portsmouth.

Described on the museum's own website - http://www.portsmouthmuseums.co.uk/museum-service/Eastney-Beam-Engine-House - as "an impressive Victorian building containing a pair of classic Boulton Watt beam engines and pumps restored to their original 1887 condition." They're not wrong about the impressive part. Or the engines part. I'll have to take their word regarding the original 1887 condition part because my time machine's in the shop getting fixed.

If you're in the area on the last weekend in the month and you like machinery made of brass and dials with needles turn you on and girders and walkways send a ripple of excitement up your spine then it's definitely worth a... more »

Eastney Beam Engine House

An ever-so-slightly processed (subtle, but if you look closely you can possibly tell) shot of the Eastney Beam Engine House in Portsmouth.

Described on the museum's own website - http://www.portsmouthmuseums.co.uk/museum-service/Eastney-Beam-Engine-House - as "an impressive Victorian building containing a pair of classic Boulton Watt beam engines and pumps restored to their original 1887 condition." They're not wrong about the impressive part. Or the engines part. I'll have to take their word regarding the original 1887 condition part because my time machine's in the shop getting fixed.

If you're in the area on the last weekend in the month and you like machinery made of brass and dials with needles turn you on and girders and walkways send a ripple of excitement up your spine then it's definitely worth a visit.___

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2014-05-24 20:08:15 (2 comments, 0 reshares, 46 +1s)Open 

This Year's Street Fashion

"And welcome back to This Year's Street Fashion coming live from the streets of Chichester. I'm joined as always by Ferdinand Dubonnet. Ferdinand, what are you looking forward to seeing today?"

"Thanks Mark. I think the buzz on the street..."

"Very good."

"Thanks. Yes, the buzz on the street is that Leonardo Martini is the hot designer to look out for. Expect an animal prints and aluminium foil fusion that blends future history with present pastness in a pastiche of metaphyscial Indo-European-African-Amer..."

"I'm going to have to interrupt you there Ferdinand because the show's already started and first on the bill is the Winter 2014 range from old stalwart of street fashion Carla Advocaat. And here comes the first model. What do you make of this then... more »

This Year's Street Fashion

"And welcome back to This Year's Street Fashion coming live from the streets of Chichester. I'm joined as always by Ferdinand Dubonnet. Ferdinand, what are you looking forward to seeing today?"

"Thanks Mark. I think the buzz on the street..."

"Very good."

"Thanks. Yes, the buzz on the street is that Leonardo Martini is the hot designer to look out for. Expect an animal prints and aluminium foil fusion that blends future history with present pastness in a pastiche of metaphyscial Indo-European-African-Amer..."

"I'm going to have to interrupt you there Ferdinand because the show's already started and first on the bill is the Winter 2014 range from old stalwart of street fashion Carla Advocaat. And here comes the first model. What do you make of this then Ferdinand?"

"This is clever. I like this. Carla's never been one to shy away from pushing boundaries so the strong emphasis on the flasher mac is unsurprising but pleasant. What's under the coat? That's what you're thinking and your eyes are drawn to the split up the backside to look for the forbidden fruit."

"I really hope there's no fruit up there."

"Indeed. Everything here shouts 'secrecy' which is very important in today's world. The coat hides, the hat hides, the cord earpiece and the phone scream 'I'm communicating, but don't listen to me.' Again, it's a very clever combination and exactly what we'd expect from Carla."

"And what do you make of the shoes?"

"Not the strongest element in this ensemble. I'd have liked to see long, black socks with this piece but I understand the omission."

"You do?"

"Absolutely. It exposes the calves to the world, harking back to sacrifices. This is saying 'take my legs but leave me my privacy.'"

"Thank you Ferdinand. Without your fashion insights this show would be me laughing hysterically into a tumbler of whiskey. We'll be right back after this break."

#StreetPhotography #StreetPics #Street  ___

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2014-05-10 11:40:53 (3 comments, 0 reshares, 49 +1s)Open 

Boycotting Tesco

The rain was falling lightly but persistently and the musician in the next alcove over from me was playing to an audience more concerned about hurrying along to the next store or wherever they'd left their cars than considering fishing about in pockets for loose change.

And then, walking his bike laden down with bags that looked like they contained all his possessions in the world, up strode an old man; lank hair framing a stubbled, weathered face under a pair of large sunglasses and hat festooned with badges, many of them birds. He stared at the musician for a while, bobbed his head in time with the tune, then pulled out a harmonica from his pocket. It looked like we were in for an impromptu jam.

But it seemed that the musician liked to play alone. In the space of seconds he'd stopped, packed up, and wandered off with a wry smile. Some people... more »

Boycotting Tesco

The rain was falling lightly but persistently and the musician in the next alcove over from me was playing to an audience more concerned about hurrying along to the next store or wherever they'd left their cars than considering fishing about in pockets for loose change.

And then, walking his bike laden down with bags that looked like they contained all his possessions in the world, up strode an old man; lank hair framing a stubbled, weathered face under a pair of large sunglasses and hat festooned with badges, many of them birds. He stared at the musician for a while, bobbed his head in time with the tune, then pulled out a harmonica from his pocket. It looked like we were in for an impromptu jam.

But it seemed that the musician liked to play alone. In the space of seconds he'd stopped, packed up, and wandered off with a wry smile. Some people just don't like to be seen associating with the seemingly homeless. It's a sad but understandable trait.

And this left the old man and me.

"I need to get some groceries," he said a little louder than was necessary. Heads of passersby turned, brows furrowed, lips pursed. I smiled and pointed behind me.

"Down there on the right," I said. "There's a small Tesco store."

"Oh no!" he shouted. "I'm never going in Tesco. Do you want to know why?" I nodded. "I got thrown out of a Tesco store by two great big guys," he continued. "Do you know? Two big guys. Security. Really big. One each side of me."

"How come?" I asked, intrigued. This sort of thing had never happened to me and the only security people I'd ever seen in supermarkets were, well, decidedly less than intimidating.

"I'd been drinking the night before, with mates, you see, and I'd gone in to get some food. This was years ago. And then I dropped some beer and they threw me out so I'm never going back there. You wouldn't would you? If they threw you out then you wouldn't would you?"

I made that face that can be interpreted any way you like. "Well," I said, pointing down East Street. "There's a Nisa shop down the end."

"Oh, Nisa," he said, scratching his chin. "Yes. That's good. Yeah, I need some groceries."

A few seconds passed in silence while he looked in the direction of the acceptable store. Suddenly, he snapped his head back in my direction looking at the camera hanging around my neck.

"What are you taking photos of?"

"Anything and everything, whatever takes my interest," I replied, giving my stock answer for whenever I'm asked this question.

"Do you want to take a picture of me?"

He didn't need to ask twice. I raised the camera and fired off a shot before he could change his mind. "Lovely," I said. "Thank you."

The rain started to fall a little heavier and I stepped further back under shelter. The old man sighed and walked his overloaded bike off in the direction of the Nisa store.

#StreetPhotography #StreetPics #Monochrome #Portrait #StreetPortrait #BlackAndWhite #BlackAndWhitePhotography  ___

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2014-05-05 17:30:51 (0 comments, 0 reshares, 45 +1s)Open 

The Big Bang

For the briefest moment of time everything that ever would be was contained within a space seemingly far too small for the mass that would emerge. A great history stretched ahead of it; a time when it would explode outwards, blossoming with life and colour and joy. There was a death on the horizon too, a time of withering and crumbling and fading into nothingness, but right now so far away as to be meaningless. This was its moment. This was its birth. This was its big bang. Oh, there was also sex with a bee to look forward to as well. That was going to be freaking awesome.

The Big Bang

For the briefest moment of time everything that ever would be was contained within a space seemingly far too small for the mass that would emerge. A great history stretched ahead of it; a time when it would explode outwards, blossoming with life and colour and joy. There was a death on the horizon too, a time of withering and crumbling and fading into nothingness, but right now so far away as to be meaningless. This was its moment. This was its birth. This was its big bang. Oh, there was also sex with a bee to look forward to as well. That was going to be freaking awesome.___

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2014-05-02 09:59:12 (11 comments, 3 reshares, 56 +1s)Open 

Jazz Busker

I could tell you about all the dreadful buskers that Chichester has to offer - I could talk at length about the bum notes from trumpeters as well as the key changes and pitches from various singers that were rejected by the original songs' composers on the grounds of violating the Geneva Convention against cruel and unusual punishment - but I'd like instead to talk about a very good one.

I don't know her name and she seems very shy so I won't dare to intrude and ask. She is, however, an absolutely fantastic jazz guitarist, often playing along to a backing track from something by Ellington or Coltrane or some other proponent of the art with whom I'm less familiar. Unlike other musicians who sometimes haunt the precinct in the city she loses herself in the music, barely even noticing or acknowledging the passersby or those few who grace her guitar... more »

Jazz Busker

I could tell you about all the dreadful buskers that Chichester has to offer - I could talk at length about the bum notes from trumpeters as well as the key changes and pitches from various singers that were rejected by the original songs' composers on the grounds of violating the Geneva Convention against cruel and unusual punishment - but I'd like instead to talk about a very good one.

I don't know her name and she seems very shy so I won't dare to intrude and ask. She is, however, an absolutely fantastic jazz guitarist, often playing along to a backing track from something by Ellington or Coltrane or some other proponent of the art with whom I'm less familiar. Unlike other musicians who sometimes haunt the precinct in the city she loses herself in the music, barely even noticing or acknowledging the passersby or those few who grace her guitar case with some change. So very jazz.

#StreetPhotography #Music #Jazz #StreetPics  ___

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2014-04-05 14:03:12 (1 comments, 2 reshares, 48 +1s)Open 

Deal Pier

On a recent trip to Kent we spent a couple of hours in Deal as we knew it had a castle there and we do like a good castle.

But we also like piers and we saw that Deal had one of those too. This necessitated a walk down it and led my wife to remark that Deal Pier was "without a doubt the ugliest pier I've ever seen."

Well, ugliness is in the eye of the beholder and it just so happens I didn't share my wife's opinion. Deal Pier is a wonderful example of a simple, brutalist structure; raw concrete and rusting iron creating great lines and shapes everywhere you look. What sort of beast couldn't possibly like that?

Please don't tell my wife I just called her a beast.

#brutalism #brutalist #blackandwhitephotography #monochromeworld #pier #Kent #clouds #architecture #sea #shadow  

Deal Pier

On a recent trip to Kent we spent a couple of hours in Deal as we knew it had a castle there and we do like a good castle.

But we also like piers and we saw that Deal had one of those too. This necessitated a walk down it and led my wife to remark that Deal Pier was "without a doubt the ugliest pier I've ever seen."

Well, ugliness is in the eye of the beholder and it just so happens I didn't share my wife's opinion. Deal Pier is a wonderful example of a simple, brutalist structure; raw concrete and rusting iron creating great lines and shapes everywhere you look. What sort of beast couldn't possibly like that?

Please don't tell my wife I just called her a beast.

#brutalism #brutalist #blackandwhitephotography #monochromeworld #pier #Kent #clouds #architecture #sea #shadow  ___

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2014-04-04 10:56:25 (1 comments, 1 reshares, 31 +1s)Open 

On The White Cliffs Of Dover

We took a short break recently, spending a few days exploring the county of Kent which describes itself as "the garden of England." I don't know that I'd describe it that way myself but I suppose my first choice description of "far better than Norfolk" - whilst wholly accurate - might be a tad contentious.

We explored castles, we visited stately homes, we wandered down piers (and up them too as failure to do so leads to death from exposure or seagull abduction), and a good time was had.

We also decided to take a walk along part of the famous white cliffs of Dover (spoiler: no bluebirds were spotted) in order to reach the South Foreland Lighthouse. This, incidentally, is something you too should do should you ever find yourself in the area; there's a rather lovely teahouse there but the personal tour of the... more »

On The White Cliffs Of Dover

We took a short break recently, spending a few days exploring the county of Kent which describes itself as "the garden of England." I don't know that I'd describe it that way myself but I suppose my first choice description of "far better than Norfolk" - whilst wholly accurate - might be a tad contentious.

We explored castles, we visited stately homes, we wandered down piers (and up them too as failure to do so leads to death from exposure or seagull abduction), and a good time was had.

We also decided to take a walk along part of the famous white cliffs of Dover (spoiler: no bluebirds were spotted) in order to reach the South Foreland Lighthouse. This, incidentally, is something you too should do should you ever find yourself in the area; there's a rather lovely teahouse there but the personal tour of the lighthouse itself which (pun alert) illuminates the history of the world's first electric-powered building of this type is the (further pun alert) highlight of the visit. I think I'm out of lighthouse-related puns now.

The clifftop walk was wonderful, if a little tiring. The windy conditions made the excursion especially exhilirating. Fellow walkers could be seen standing horrifically close to the edge. Sheer faces of chalk stood out marvellously against the blue sky and brownish water. France could be seen on the horizon. France was so close, in fact, that our phones switched to a French network. Many curse words were uttered as we turned off data roaming to avoid excessive charges even though we were on home soil. All-in-all, fun.

This photo is from the walk along the white cliffs. Mark, I said to myself. Mark, what composition says iconic White Cliffs of Dover image to you? The answer, of course, was Dame Vera Lynn leading lemmings over the edge to land on and repel Norman invaders because that's how my brain works. So here's a spiky, bushy tree-type thing and some grass.___

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2014-03-05 10:02:11 (6 comments, 3 reshares, 68 +1s)Open 

Siderodromophobia

I used to have a not-quite-phobia, not-quite-fear of trains. Let's call it an apprehension of them.

I could watch them on television - not that I ever would; they're trains, not entertainment - and I could travel on them with no real problem other than the standard sort that accompanies any form of rail travel in this country (South West Trains, I'm looking at you). But my general unease would manifest itself if I happened to walk near a track or cross a pedestrian bridge over tracks while a train was approaching.

There's this noise, you see. It's metallic and quite high-pitched, and it builds. It's the vibration of the metal rails and the air being pushed ahead of the approaching train. It's something eerie and threatening and, being industrial, it's unnatural which makes it worse. It doesn't help that I'm... more »

Siderodromophobia

I used to have a not-quite-phobia, not-quite-fear of trains. Let's call it an apprehension of them.

I could watch them on television - not that I ever would; they're trains, not entertainment - and I could travel on them with no real problem other than the standard sort that accompanies any form of rail travel in this country (South West Trains, I'm looking at you). But my general unease would manifest itself if I happened to walk near a track or cross a pedestrian bridge over tracks while a train was approaching.

There's this noise, you see. It's metallic and quite high-pitched, and it builds. It's the vibration of the metal rails and the air being pushed ahead of the approaching train. It's something eerie and threatening and, being industrial, it's unnatural which makes it worse. It doesn't help that I'm plagued with an active imagination (I'm picturing you completely naked right now) and half-thoughts of a derailed locomotive lurching and leaping from the rails and directly at me were commonplace.

I don't know when this apprehension faded exactly. At some point the rational part of my brain took control, gave me a mental slap across the chops, and told me to pull myself together. It's nice to not feel that mild terror when near trains now. The accompanying trauma of travel (South West Trains again) and other imaginative processes in my cranium (has anyone told you you look good naked?) remain in place.

#monochrome #blackandwhitephotography #blackandwhite #travel #train #railway  ___

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2014-02-12 10:17:31 (4 comments, 0 reshares, 42 +1s)Open 

Against The Wall

You had one job to do. You had one little job to do. And you failed. Worse than that, you failed on purpose. Your comrades bravely suffered the abhorrence of the enemy as it crawled past them, but not you. You abandoned your posts in a time of great conflict. You allowed... Ugh! I can barely bring myself to say it! You allowed cars to drive freely. You failed to maintain the contraflow. You have been found guilty of desertion by a court of your peers.

Firing squad, take aim.

Against The Wall

You had one job to do. You had one little job to do. And you failed. Worse than that, you failed on purpose. Your comrades bravely suffered the abhorrence of the enemy as it crawled past them, but not you. You abandoned your posts in a time of great conflict. You allowed... Ugh! I can barely bring myself to say it! You allowed cars to drive freely. You failed to maintain the contraflow. You have been found guilty of desertion by a court of your peers.

Firing squad, take aim.___

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2014-02-02 14:05:45 (30 comments, 2 reshares, 53 +1s)Open 

Super Bowl Sunday

I'm one of those people. I'm a non-American who loves American Football. And today is the big day of the year for us fans of the sport closest to chess in padded armour there is (excluding actual chess in padded armour (which isn't half as exciting as it sounds)): it's Super Bowl Sunday!

I took the time to introduce my wife to the sport when we first started dating and I'm pleased to say that she's a massive fan of the game now too. Subsequently, we've entered into a little tradition in our home where the pair of us book the Monday following the game off and spend the entire day subjecting our bodies to the best and worst that America can offer from the food and drink aisles of the local supermarket. Note: there are some non-American drinks in there too; we're not completely crazy.

As for tonight's game, after some... more »

Super Bowl Sunday

I'm one of those people. I'm a non-American who loves American Football. And today is the big day of the year for us fans of the sport closest to chess in padded armour there is (excluding actual chess in padded armour (which isn't half as exciting as it sounds)): it's Super Bowl Sunday!

I took the time to introduce my wife to the sport when we first started dating and I'm pleased to say that she's a massive fan of the game now too. Subsequently, we've entered into a little tradition in our home where the pair of us book the Monday following the game off and spend the entire day subjecting our bodies to the best and worst that America can offer from the food and drink aisles of the local supermarket. Note: there are some non-American drinks in there too; we're not completely crazy.

As for tonight's game, after some careful thought we have decided we dislike both teams and really don't mind who loses. But if we were pressed to support a team we might ever-so-slightly lean in the direction of Denver. As a Patriots fan I have no love for Peyton Manning but I do respect him and regard him as the greatest quarterback in the NFL. My wife is a Minnesota Vikings fan and so would quite like Seattle not to win so that they both remain in that select crowd of franchises who've never picked up the greatest prize in the sport. But so long as it's a good game we don't really mind who is ultimately victorious.

#NFL #superbowl2014 #Nokia #nokialumia #lumia1020 #fhotoroom___

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2014-02-01 19:29:09 (8 comments, 2 reshares, 61 +1s)Open 

The Bear Tree

Bears grow well in temperate climates but it's when you get greater than average rainfall - such as that currently otherwise blighting the south of England - that the crops really thrive. Over the past few months one of the largest sectors for employment growth has been for bear pickers as it's vitally important to make sure every last one is plucked from the bear tree branches at just the right time; the only drawback to bumper bear growths is that those that ripen and fall to the ground naturally often go on to terrorise neighbourhoods, savage locals, and - worst of all - steal pic-a-nic baskets.

The Bear Tree

Bears grow well in temperate climates but it's when you get greater than average rainfall - such as that currently otherwise blighting the south of England - that the crops really thrive. Over the past few months one of the largest sectors for employment growth has been for bear pickers as it's vitally important to make sure every last one is plucked from the bear tree branches at just the right time; the only drawback to bumper bear growths is that those that ripen and fall to the ground naturally often go on to terrorise neighbourhoods, savage locals, and - worst of all - steal pic-a-nic baskets.___

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2014-01-23 23:55:27 (4 comments, 0 reshares, 44 +1s)Open 

The Mirror

A mirror can add a lot to a photograph. It can add depth or light or the presence of something you wouldn't normally be able to see. It can double the appearance of something key to the composition. It can change the angle of some object. It can flip part of the image and force you to look at it in a different way. For me, though, probably the best thing a mirror brings to a photograph is evidence that you're not a few feet from a vampire. This guy in this photo: he's not a vampire. Good work mirror.

The Mirror

A mirror can add a lot to a photograph. It can add depth or light or the presence of something you wouldn't normally be able to see. It can double the appearance of something key to the composition. It can change the angle of some object. It can flip part of the image and force you to look at it in a different way. For me, though, probably the best thing a mirror brings to a photograph is evidence that you're not a few feet from a vampire. This guy in this photo: he's not a vampire. Good work mirror.___

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2013-12-21 12:57:29 (2 comments, 1 reshares, 58 +1s)Open 

Smiles

Miles and miles of smiles, all thanks to the Coca-Cola truck paying a visit to Chichester yesterday (http://www.flickr.com/photos/neonbubble/sets/72157638878750734/) to spread joy in the form of tiny cans of coke, photos in front of the aforementioned truck, and Christmas songs from a group of enthusiastic singers.

#StreetPics #StreetPhotography +StreetPics +StreetPhotography 

Smiles

Miles and miles of smiles, all thanks to the Coca-Cola truck paying a visit to Chichester yesterday (http://www.flickr.com/photos/neonbubble/sets/72157638878750734/) to spread joy in the form of tiny cans of coke, photos in front of the aforementioned truck, and Christmas songs from a group of enthusiastic singers.

#StreetPics #StreetPhotography +StreetPics +StreetPhotography ___

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2013-11-24 11:47:16 (4 comments, 0 reshares, 38 +1s)Open 

The Terror

They are terrifying things. Powerful things with arms that swing and, yes, destroy if you should venture too close. And the noise, the noise; dull, incessant, so frightening. We are wary of them. We try to keep them at a distance. Perhaps if we gather together for safety, perhaps if we amass out at sea then it will go away.

Yes! Yes! It runs! Look how it heads back to its parents!

We are safe. For now, we are safe. But we must be ever vigilant.

The Terror

They are terrifying things. Powerful things with arms that swing and, yes, destroy if you should venture too close. And the noise, the noise; dull, incessant, so frightening. We are wary of them. We try to keep them at a distance. Perhaps if we gather together for safety, perhaps if we amass out at sea then it will go away.

Yes! Yes! It runs! Look how it heads back to its parents!

We are safe. For now, we are safe. But we must be ever vigilant.___

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2013-11-22 12:17:15 (0 comments, 0 reshares, 4 +1s)Open 

50 Doctor Who facts for Doctor Who's fiftieth anniversary.

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Don't mind me; just testing to see whether things are more discoverable if they're linked on G+.

50 Doctor Who facts for Doctor Who's fiftieth anniversary.

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Don't mind me; just testing to see whether things are more discoverable if they're linked on G+.___

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2013-11-17 11:49:28 (2 comments, 1 reshares, 42 +1s)Open 

Rabbit Suit

"Why are you wearing a rabbit suit?"

"Why are you wearing a little human suit?"

"After what you call centuries of experimentation it has been determined that this form best fits our purpose of pre-invasion intelligence gathering on 'M' class - that's M for Meat, by the way, and nothing to do with your entertaining distraction media called Star Trek - worlds. Close proximity to a large cross section of the dominant species is necessary to take imprints of the thought processes that pulse through the brain analogue in use and thus present the most efficacious strategy for enslavement and consumption. You may rest assured, planetary representative in a rabbit suit, that when the end comes it will be swift and relatively painless thanks to the work of operatives such as myself currently deep undercover across the surface of... more »

Rabbit Suit

"Why are you wearing a rabbit suit?"

"Why are you wearing a little human suit?"

"After what you call centuries of experimentation it has been determined that this form best fits our purpose of pre-invasion intelligence gathering on 'M' class - that's M for Meat, by the way, and nothing to do with your entertaining distraction media called Star Trek - worlds. Close proximity to a large cross section of the dominant species is necessary to take imprints of the thought processes that pulse through the brain analogue in use and thus present the most efficacious strategy for enslavement and consumption. You may rest assured, planetary representative in a rabbit suit, that when the end comes it will be swift and relatively painless thanks to the work of operatives such as myself currently deep undercover across the surface of this oblate spheroid. We're also in cats."

"I think I'm going to give you this lolly from my basket and back away slowly from you and your... mum?"

"Type 19 Model 3 Protector Unit. Heat ray, shielded against EMPs, and waterproofed to ten atmospheres."

"Here you go then little chap."___

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2013-11-17 11:32:46 (0 comments, 0 reshares, 1 +1s)Open 

Jim Al-Khalili - Paradoxes

Been a little bit busy recently helping to organise a talk from theoretical physicist, TV personality, and friend to the stars Jim Al-Khalili in a nearby pub marquee as part of our local Skeptics in the Pub (I'm one of the co-organisers of the Portsmouth branch).

Jim was really friendly, the talk was aimed at just the right level, and the evening was a huge success (although some people complained it was cold but, hey, it's November, it's a marquee, and it was either this or reduce the number of people who could see him by over a half).

These photos taken by one of my fellow organisers, Paul, who sat near the front. I sat at the rear of the venue helping to keep an eye on troublemakers looking to pick an argument over the Copenhagen interpretation or something. I'm pleased to say the night went smoothly.

Jim's got a book out... more »

Described by Time Out magazine as "the hipper Brian Cox", Jim Al-Khalili, OBE, is Professor of Theoretical Physics at the University of Surrey, but is probably best known to the general public for his television documentaries such as The Secret Life of Chaos, Shock and Awe — the Story of Electricity, and Order and Disorder, as well as his regular BBC Radio 4 show The Life Scientific, where he interviews famous living scientists about their scientific lives.

Professor Al-Khalili has written several science books aimed at the general reader, the latest being Paradox, published by Bantam Press.

In 2013 he became President of the British Humanist Association, but most important for us he is the Honorary President of Portsmouth Skeptics in the Pub, and we were delighted to welcome him back for the second time.___Jim Al-Khalili - Paradoxes

Been a little bit busy recently helping to organise a talk from theoretical physicist, TV personality, and friend to the stars Jim Al-Khalili in a nearby pub marquee as part of our local Skeptics in the Pub (I'm one of the co-organisers of the Portsmouth branch).

Jim was really friendly, the talk was aimed at just the right level, and the evening was a huge success (although some people complained it was cold but, hey, it's November, it's a marquee, and it was either this or reduce the number of people who could see him by over a half).

These photos taken by one of my fellow organisers, Paul, who sat near the front. I sat at the rear of the venue helping to keep an eye on troublemakers looking to pick an argument over the Copenhagen interpretation or something. I'm pleased to say the night went smoothly.

Jim's got a book out called Paradox: The Nine Greatest Enigmas in Science and will very shortly appear in a two-episode series on BBC Four called Light and Dark so catch it if you can.

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2013-10-29 22:51:03 (6 comments, 1 reshares, 31 +1s)Open 

Norway Cruise - Crown Princess

I've finally finished going through the photos I took on our cruise through the Norwegian fjords on board the Crown Princess. Nothing too arty, nothing heavily processed, just a little bit of cleaning up, and a very, very small selection of the pictures taken. You don't want to see them all; trust me.

Pictures in this album are in no particular order and feature various fjords, Geiranger, Olden, Stavanger, Bergen, and Flåm. The cruise itself was great (second time for us with +Princess Cruises) and Norway's got some stunning scenery.

And all this means I might soon return to taking pictures and posting regularly again! Oh happy day!

Norway Cruise - Crown Princess

I've finally finished going through the photos I took on our cruise through the Norwegian fjords on board the Crown Princess. Nothing too arty, nothing heavily processed, just a little bit of cleaning up, and a very, very small selection of the pictures taken. You don't want to see them all; trust me.

Pictures in this album are in no particular order and feature various fjords, Geiranger, Olden, Stavanger, Bergen, and Flåm. The cruise itself was great (second time for us with +Princess Cruises) and Norway's got some stunning scenery.

And all this means I might soon return to taking pictures and posting regularly again! Oh happy day!___

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2013-09-22 10:46:59 (3 comments, 1 reshares, 42 +1s)Open 

Filtered Fjord

I know, I know... I haven't posted anything in ages.

I have an excuse. I took just under one billion photos on my recent Norwegian cruise and you know how it is when you have just under one billion photos to look through and say to yourself: "That's okay... exposure tweak... that's okay... sharpen that a smidge... that's not that great but I'll keep it... that's a variation on the previous three shots but I don't want to delete it... that's okay... that's bloody awful... that's okay..."

Yeah, so it's all taking a while.

Anyway, this morning I've been going through the last of my shots around the Geirangerfjorden and it was on this part of the trip that I started playing around with a set of filters that I'd bought especially. As someone who typically shoots street-style the need to... more »

Filtered Fjord

I know, I know... I haven't posted anything in ages.

I have an excuse. I took just under one billion photos on my recent Norwegian cruise and you know how it is when you have just under one billion photos to look through and say to yourself: "That's okay... exposure tweak... that's okay... sharpen that a smidge... that's not that great but I'll keep it... that's a variation on the previous three shots but I don't want to delete it... that's okay... that's bloody awful... that's okay..."

Yeah, so it's all taking a while.

Anyway, this morning I've been going through the last of my shots around the Geirangerfjorden and it was on this part of the trip that I started playing around with a set of filters that I'd bought especially. As someone who typically shoots street-style the need to work with graduated ND and coloured filters is pretty rare (and in my case completely new) so there were quite a few "oh dear, that's just horrendous" moments. Still, there were some that I thought worked pretty funkily and here's one from late evening leaving Geiranger, shot from our cabin balcony on board the Crown Princess.___

2013-09-10 09:48:23 (0 comments, 0 reshares, 2 +1s)Open 

A very quick thank you for the many, many birthday wishes and mentions that took place last week and which I'm just seeing now as I've been away on a cruise around the Norwegian fjords on the Crown Princess; internet usage was quite limited on my data plan in Norway and completely impractical while at sea. And then yesterday was spent tackling the mountain of washing and crying inwardly at the prospect of returning to work.

As you can probably imagine one or two photos were taken and may start to trickle in over the next few days, weeks, months, or years.

[-]

A very quick thank you for the many, many birthday wishes and mentions that took place last week and which I'm just seeing now as I've been away on a cruise around the Norwegian fjords on the Crown Princess; internet usage was quite limited on my data plan in Norway and completely impractical while at sea. And then yesterday was spent tackling the mountain of washing and crying inwardly at the prospect of returning to work.

As you can probably imagine one or two photos were taken and may start to trickle in over the next few days, weeks, months, or years.

[-]___

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2013-08-18 13:50:23 (3 comments, 1 reshares, 7 +1s)Open 

Plug

Not a photograph and probably not of interest to anyone who isn't British and who didn't grow up watching television in the 1970s and early 1980s, but having discovered this little gem of a YouTube channel this morning by accident and having laughed my head off (not literally) at loads of the videos I felt compelled to share especially since it doesn't seem to have got much love. If spoof episodes of 1970s/1980s British shows are your thing then this channel is well worth a subscribe/look.

I've linked to my site where I've picked out just four of the videos but the YouTube channel itself is http://www.youtube.com/user/victorialucas38

[-]

Plug

Not a photograph and probably not of interest to anyone who isn't British and who didn't grow up watching television in the 1970s and early 1980s, but having discovered this little gem of a YouTube channel this morning by accident and having laughed my head off (not literally) at loads of the videos I felt compelled to share especially since it doesn't seem to have got much love. If spoof episodes of 1970s/1980s British shows are your thing then this channel is well worth a subscribe/look.

I've linked to my site where I've picked out just four of the videos but the YouTube channel itself is http://www.youtube.com/user/victorialucas38

[-]___

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2013-08-17 08:51:33 (9 comments, 1 reshares, 60 +1s)Open 

A Gathering

They gathered en masse under the awning of the stall, grabbing a little shelter from the light but persistent drizzle. Even from a distance it was clear that they were crowding the proprietor of the street business; it looked... odd.

"Do you have any large bags?" asked the woman at the front, her eyes scanning the stall but not glancing at its owner.

"I've got some small paper bags," she answered with a smile. "They should be big enough for anything you buy here."

"We're after large bags," came the reply after a moment's pause. "The more impractical for wandering around the streets with, the better."

I watched the lady who ran the stall look around uncomfortably. She did her best to smile again and pointed at the signs that decorated her mobile place of business.... more »

A Gathering

They gathered en masse under the awning of the stall, grabbing a little shelter from the light but persistent drizzle. Even from a distance it was clear that they were crowding the proprietor of the street business; it looked... odd.

"Do you have any large bags?" asked the woman at the front, her eyes scanning the stall but not glancing at its owner.

"I've got some small paper bags," she answered with a smile. "They should be big enough for anything you buy here."

"We're after large bags," came the reply after a moment's pause. "The more impractical for wandering around the streets with, the better."

I watched the lady who ran the stall look around uncomfortably. She did her best to smile again and pointed at the signs that decorated her mobile place of business. "Handmade bracelets and anklets. Silver jewellery. That's all I sell here."

"We would like to buy some oversized bags," one of the children intoned.

The market stall proprietor looked uneasy and turned to address the first person who had spoken to her. "No, I only sell bracelets, anklets, and bits of silver jewellery. Things like that. Rings. You know?"

"You do not have large bags that look ridiculously out of place here." It came across more like a statement than a question. I could feel the silence that followed swell suffocatingly.

Abruptly, the group turned and slowly wandered off as one without a word, accompanied by the rough, rolling sound of their bags' plastic wheels clattering on the flagstones. Almost all of the group, anyway.

The one remaining member stared into the eyes of the stallholder, holding that piercing look for an unsettlingly long period of time before she spoke. "Do you have any stupidly large footballs?"

With a furtive glance left and right the stall's owner ducked down and reached under the main tray of wares. "A fiver each or two for eight quid," she half-whispered.___

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2013-08-03 16:55:51 (7 comments, 2 reshares, 62 +1s)Open 

Chichester Tramp

What majesty there is in being a tramp!

Fresh air every day. Watch the seasons change moment by moment! Well, every moment not filled with hunting through bins for discarded food and the butts of cigarettes. See strangers grow up, form relationships, and steadfastly refuse to make eye contact with you!

To live a life free from deadlines and the worries of paying bills: is it any wonder that the position of tramp holds so much respect amongst the non-tramp populace?

Look! Look at the space the tramp is given! It's not the smell (it's not just the smell, anyway) and it's not because of the random talking or wheezy shouting at passersby (although that probably helps a bit); that's the space that comes from pure, unadulterated respect! Maybe even reverence!

Okay, probably not reverence.

Could you see... more »

Chichester Tramp

What majesty there is in being a tramp!

Fresh air every day. Watch the seasons change moment by moment! Well, every moment not filled with hunting through bins for discarded food and the butts of cigarettes. See strangers grow up, form relationships, and steadfastly refuse to make eye contact with you!

To live a life free from deadlines and the worries of paying bills: is it any wonder that the position of tramp holds so much respect amongst the non-tramp populace?

Look! Look at the space the tramp is given! It's not the smell (it's not just the smell, anyway) and it's not because of the random talking or wheezy shouting at passersby (although that probably helps a bit); that's the space that comes from pure, unadulterated respect! Maybe even reverence!

Okay, probably not reverence.

Could you see yourself living this life?

If so then Chichester District Council want to hear from you. A surplus in EU funding has led to the permanent creation of a new role of Fourth Tramp (pay grade Z9) with the intention being to fill this position before the start of the next school term. Applicants must have their own halitosis but all other skills can be learnt on the job and no previous experience is necessary. Chichester District Council is an equal opportunities employer.

-

For #StreetPics   / +StreetPics curated by +Tatiana Parmeeva and +Maria Roco 
#StreetPhotography #MonochromeWorld +Monochrome World ___

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2013-07-27 18:48:18 (5 comments, 0 reshares, 55 +1s)Open 

Portsmouth City Museum

Took a wander down to the museum today as there was something advertised as "a Saxon Invasion" taking place. It turns out that the reason that England isn't named after the Saxon people is that their invasions - a marquee and a smaller tent showcasing food, jewellery, and weapons - were often on the wrong end of a sturdy defence of kicking the crap out of the Saxons and telling them to get back to Saxonland (I'm not convinced that's where they came from to be honest).

Still, there was a Sir Arthur Conan Doyle exhibition which was interesting (author of Sherlock Holmes as you know, a bit of a spiritualist nutball as you may know, played in goal in Portsmouth as everyone around these parts knows) and I even discovered that there's a garden area in the museum, that you can go into it, and that the view of the museum from there is... more »

Portsmouth City Museum

Took a wander down to the museum today as there was something advertised as "a Saxon Invasion" taking place. It turns out that the reason that England isn't named after the Saxon people is that their invasions - a marquee and a smaller tent showcasing food, jewellery, and weapons - were often on the wrong end of a sturdy defence of kicking the crap out of the Saxons and telling them to get back to Saxonland (I'm not convinced that's where they came from to be honest).

Still, there was a Sir Arthur Conan Doyle exhibition which was interesting (author of Sherlock Holmes as you know, a bit of a spiritualist nutball as you may know, played in goal in Portsmouth as everyone around these parts knows) and I even discovered that there's a garden area in the museum, that you can go into it, and that the view of the museum from there is actually rather splendid (as photographed). Very pleasant how you can live in a city all your life, visit a place numerous times, and still be surprised.___

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2013-07-25 21:25:55 (8 comments, 1 reshares, 54 +1s)Open 

Buskers

Chichester is a reasonably affluent place and it attracts a lot of tourists on account of its... okay, I'm not entirely sure why it attracts a lot of tourists although it certainly does for some reason. Anyway, where there are tourists and locals with money there will be buskers, and in all the many lunchtimes I've spent observing and photographing people I've come to recognise a lot of these buskers.

There's Guy Who Plays The Blues who's very good and doesn't really seem to make as much money as he deserves. Great voice, great skill on the guitar.

There's Girl Who Plays Jazz and, again, she's very talented. Although miserable as sin. Maybe it's her jazz personality shining through.

There's also White Guy Who Plays Reggae and he's an oddity; he's not bad, not great, but he just seems wrong somehow.... more »

Buskers

Chichester is a reasonably affluent place and it attracts a lot of tourists on account of its... okay, I'm not entirely sure why it attracts a lot of tourists although it certainly does for some reason. Anyway, where there are tourists and locals with money there will be buskers, and in all the many lunchtimes I've spent observing and photographing people I've come to recognise a lot of these buskers.

There's Guy Who Plays The Blues who's very good and doesn't really seem to make as much money as he deserves. Great voice, great skill on the guitar.

There's Girl Who Plays Jazz and, again, she's very talented. Although miserable as sin. Maybe it's her jazz personality shining through.

There's also White Guy Who Plays Reggae and he's an oddity; he's not bad, not great, but he just seems wrong somehow.

The most successful of all the buskers is Guy Who Cannot Hold A Note To Save His Life which does make you wonder just what it is that drives so many people to throw money his way. They might be donations towards singing lessons, I suppose.

And there are many more.

Today we were pleased to experience a new busker to the scene and, after careful consideration, I've nicknamed him Guy Who Forgot His Accordion for now.___

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2013-07-21 12:32:03 (3 comments, 0 reshares, 46 +1s)Open 

Innocent

You'd never suspect it was him just from looking. You'd probably not even believe it could be him if someone simply told you. But it is him.

He's not the innocent old man you think he is. He's got that appearance of frailty that comes upon everyone in their later years but there's strength just beneath the surface too. He quite likely is someone's grandad but he's not just anyone's grandad.

He moves among the crowds leaving a ripple of chaos wherever he treads and you see the perplexed looks on the faces of those he passes. No, they think, it can't be... Can it?

It is.

It's the Phantom Hat Gluer.

Innocent

You'd never suspect it was him just from looking. You'd probably not even believe it could be him if someone simply told you. But it is him.

He's not the innocent old man you think he is. He's got that appearance of frailty that comes upon everyone in their later years but there's strength just beneath the surface too. He quite likely is someone's grandad but he's not just anyone's grandad.

He moves among the crowds leaving a ripple of chaos wherever he treads and you see the perplexed looks on the faces of those he passes. No, they think, it can't be... Can it?

It is.

It's the Phantom Hat Gluer.___

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2013-07-14 14:19:44 (1 comments, 0 reshares, 56 +1s)Open 

Farlington Marshes - Handheld HDR

I don't normally shoot HDR (although I do often create pseudo-HDR from a single exposure for monochrome work) but the urge to try it washed over me on a walk around Farlington Marshes yesterday evening as the sun was sliding down the western sky and the gentle off-shore breeze was doing its darnedest to blow away as much of the oppressive heat of the day as it could.

Handheld, three exposures, Photomatix Pro, and only five minutes of standing around under the gaze of an ever-more-bored wife while I hunted through the menu options on the camera, turning dials and pressing buttons, trying to remember how to actually put the thing into HDR mode.

Farlington Marshes - Handheld HDR

I don't normally shoot HDR (although I do often create pseudo-HDR from a single exposure for monochrome work) but the urge to try it washed over me on a walk around Farlington Marshes yesterday evening as the sun was sliding down the western sky and the gentle off-shore breeze was doing its darnedest to blow away as much of the oppressive heat of the day as it could.

Handheld, three exposures, Photomatix Pro, and only five minutes of standing around under the gaze of an ever-more-bored wife while I hunted through the menu options on the camera, turning dials and pressing buttons, trying to remember how to actually put the thing into HDR mode.___

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2013-07-13 11:03:23 (6 comments, 0 reshares, 46 +1s)Open 

Chichester Canal

I loathe this weather. I'm not a hot weather person. I'm really, really looking forward to my trip to Norway in six weeks' time. It can't be this hot in Norway in September. It had better not be.

It's not good weather for street photography when it's like this. The light is very bright and the shadows are very dark and metering on the camera is an ever-changing, bloody nightmare. But worse than that is the skimpy clothing people wear (and I can't blame them, of course, because it's hot as I might have mentioned). It's bad enough in less sweltering times swinging your camera someone's way and risking that glance or stare with that withering look of revulsion behind the eyes (if only everyone could understand it's art (ish; your opinion may differ), not perversion - the lament of the street photographer) but when... more »

Chichester Canal

I loathe this weather. I'm not a hot weather person. I'm really, really looking forward to my trip to Norway in six weeks' time. It can't be this hot in Norway in September. It had better not be.

It's not good weather for street photography when it's like this. The light is very bright and the shadows are very dark and metering on the camera is an ever-changing, bloody nightmare. But worse than that is the skimpy clothing people wear (and I can't blame them, of course, because it's hot as I might have mentioned). It's bad enough in less sweltering times swinging your camera someone's way and risking that glance or stare with that withering look of revulsion behind the eyes (if only everyone could understand it's art (ish; your opinion may differ), not perversion - the lament of the street photographer) but when you've got to fight the voice in your head that keeps saying "that's a fairly good shot with a decent story behind it... but that skirt is very short and tempers are even shorter and someone will probably punch you if you take it" then it's a thousand times worse.

So castles and other buildings and canals and beaches and events with plenty of shade and playing with the new EF 24-105L IS USM lens are the order of the day for the moment.

Stupid weather.___

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2013-07-07 13:13:27 (1 comments, 0 reshares, 32 +1s)Open 

The Force

You know it was a good beer festival when you look back at some of the photos taken and realise most people - yourself included, at the time - were far more interested in drinking delicious ales and ciders, chatting with friends, and getting burnt to a crisp under a relentless sun rather than pay attention to the local Jedi group who had turned up just to demonstrate through hovering sticks how the power of battle stations was insignificant next to the power of the Force.

The Force

You know it was a good beer festival when you look back at some of the photos taken and realise most people - yourself included, at the time - were far more interested in drinking delicious ales and ciders, chatting with friends, and getting burnt to a crisp under a relentless sun rather than pay attention to the local Jedi group who had turned up just to demonstrate through hovering sticks how the power of battle stations was insignificant next to the power of the Force.___

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2013-06-22 09:11:22 (6 comments, 3 reshares, 79 +1s)Open 

Public Displays Of Affection

It's interesting to see the different ways in which people show affection or react to public displays of affection while on the street.

Here we have a couple who are madly in lust with one another and who couldn't care less who sees them. And why should they? Good for them!

And there to the right is James who feels a little differently about things. James looks absolutely mortified. But then, James is being followed closely by a small, black, wheeled robot proclaiming its love for James in a shrill, electronic voice. James has probably been tinkering with the robot's emotion circuits and is now paying the price. Oh James, you silly person!

#StreetPhotography   +StreetPhotography curated by +Maria Roco  and +Tatiana Parmeeva 

Public Displays Of Affection

It's interesting to see the different ways in which people show affection or react to public displays of affection while on the street.

Here we have a couple who are madly in lust with one another and who couldn't care less who sees them. And why should they? Good for them!

And there to the right is James who feels a little differently about things. James looks absolutely mortified. But then, James is being followed closely by a small, black, wheeled robot proclaiming its love for James in a shrill, electronic voice. James has probably been tinkering with the robot's emotion circuits and is now paying the price. Oh James, you silly person!

#StreetPhotography   +StreetPhotography curated by +Maria Roco  and +Tatiana Parmeeva ___

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2013-06-15 09:50:12 (4 comments, 1 reshares, 45 +1s)Open 

Embrace

This happens a lot. This happens more times than you might imagine.

"Excuse me, miss?" is how it starts. Or mister, sometimes. But not this time.

"Yes?" She's hooked. There's something about him that she finds intoxicating. I don't know if it's his eyes. They all have these intense eyes. Or it might be his lips. I've seen people stare at them before. I've even heard it might just be some sort of pheromone. I don't know about that. All I do know is that I'm immune to it which is why I'm here. And I know she's a goner.

"Can you form a teapot?"

How many times have I heard this now? I've lost count. It just sounds so innocent. Of course she can form a teapot. Everyone can form a teapot. We're all taught it at school but have you ever thought why? Who even uses a... more »

Embrace

This happens a lot. This happens more times than you might imagine.

"Excuse me, miss?" is how it starts. Or mister, sometimes. But not this time.

"Yes?" She's hooked. There's something about him that she finds intoxicating. I don't know if it's his eyes. They all have these intense eyes. Or it might be his lips. I've seen people stare at them before. I've even heard it might just be some sort of pheromone. I don't know about that. All I do know is that I'm immune to it which is why I'm here. And I know she's a goner.

"Can you form a teapot?"

How many times have I heard this now? I've lost count. It just sounds so innocent. Of course she can form a teapot. Everyone can form a teapot. We're all taught it at school but have you ever thought why? Who even uses a teapot any longer? And this knowledge, this pointless knowledge will be the death of her.

"Sure," she says, hesitantly, and then with more conviction, "here's the handle." She places her hand on her hip. The two of them are close now and it's difficult to tell who's moved towards whom. "And here's the spout."

She's lost to the world now. As she's admiring the crook in her arm and her twisted hand he's leant in, dislocated his jaw, extended his teeth, and clasped her to him. Frozen shock, stifled pain, a shudder, a stiffening, and then it's all over.

So much horror. There's a taste of hot metal on your tongue. You never get used to the tangibility of the blood in the air.

I really don't know why I agreed to spend a year documenting Chichester's street vampires.___

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2013-06-07 20:45:18 (8 comments, 0 reshares, 61 +1s)Open 

A Filthy Habit

If I had my way it would be banned entirely. Sure, you can't do it in public buildings or workplaces now but that just sends them outside, and outside is the nice place. Why are we letting those people befoul the nice place? Ban it outright is what I say.

And yet it's often photogenic too. It can make the difference between an okay shot and a slightly-better-than-okay shot. It adds interest; the revolting is often the most interesting after all.

So I watched him, one of them, one of those people, and I waited. He looked guilty as he reached into his pocket and took out a packet. He unwrapped it and discarded the clear polythene into his bag; he'd dispose of it properly later. Shielding it all with his hands - shielding it from the wind or from the gaze of onlookers who might not approve? Who can say? - he took in a mouthful and some painful... more »

A Filthy Habit

If I had my way it would be banned entirely. Sure, you can't do it in public buildings or workplaces now but that just sends them outside, and outside is the nice place. Why are we letting those people befoul the nice place? Ban it outright is what I say.

And yet it's often photogenic too. It can make the difference between an okay shot and a slightly-better-than-okay shot. It adds interest; the revolting is often the most interesting after all.

So I watched him, one of them, one of those people, and I waited. He looked guilty as he reached into his pocket and took out a packet. He unwrapped it and discarded the clear polythene into his bag; he'd dispose of it properly later. Shielding it all with his hands - shielding it from the wind or from the gaze of onlookers who might not approve? Who can say? - he took in a mouthful and some painful pleasure flashed all too briefly across his face.

I grimaced but snapped a shot anyway. Vile, vile, vile. I just don't see the attraction in it. Sucking the brains from fieldmice through a straw is such a filthy, filthy habit.___

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2013-05-25 18:11:50 (6 comments, 8 reshares, 65 +1s)Open 

The Cone Of Shame

"I feel like an idiot."

"You're fine."

"I look stupid."

"You look fine. Trust me."

"No. I really look stupid. Everyone will stare at me."

"Nobody will pay you any attention. They've seen it all before. Hell, they've seen far worse."

"You're just saying that. I look stupid."

"You don't look stupid. Please, can we just go out?"

"I don't know if I can cope with people staring at me all the time."

"They won't notice you. I promise."

"You're just saying that."

"Look, I'll stick a transparent cone around my neck and nobody will even see your shoes."

"You'd do that for me?"
... more »

The Cone Of Shame

"I feel like an idiot."

"You're fine."

"I look stupid."

"You look fine. Trust me."

"No. I really look stupid. Everyone will stare at me."

"Nobody will pay you any attention. They've seen it all before. Hell, they've seen far worse."

"You're just saying that. I look stupid."

"You don't look stupid. Please, can we just go out?"

"I don't know if I can cope with people staring at me all the time."

"They won't notice you. I promise."

"You're just saying that."

"Look, I'll stick a transparent cone around my neck and nobody will even see your shoes."

"You'd do that for me?"

"Let's go."___

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2013-05-15 20:33:26 (4 comments, 1 reshares, 45 +1s)Open 

Boating For Landlubbers

I felt my stream needed some colour.

That's not a reference to anything urological in case you're wondering.

This was taken in Abingdon-on-Thames (as it's now known) on Monday. Earlier this year the area was very flooded (that'll be that Thames I'll warrant) and if I had to guess I'd say that this particular boat didn't quite make it back to the river when the waters subsided.

[-]

And there's a #NauticalWednesday theme so I'll tag that.

Boating For Landlubbers

I felt my stream needed some colour.

That's not a reference to anything urological in case you're wondering.

This was taken in Abingdon-on-Thames (as it's now known) on Monday. Earlier this year the area was very flooded (that'll be that Thames I'll warrant) and if I had to guess I'd say that this particular boat didn't quite make it back to the river when the waters subsided.

[-]

And there's a #NauticalWednesday theme so I'll tag that.___

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2013-05-15 17:52:58 (5 comments, 1 reshares, 47 +1s)Open 

Starbucks Coffee

Times are hard if you're a large chain of coffee shops still facing a bit of public backlash over tax avoidance. Do you just wait it all out, relying on the media to find something new to get their teeth into and the laziness and short memory of the average consumer? Or do you try something to entice the customers back from Costa? Do you, perhaps, provide free front row seats to the latest sport sweeping the nation: Giant Street Skittles? Do you hope that the lure of big names from boules crossing over into the high stakes street sport world will bring in the coffee-lovers in sufficient numbers to offset compensating families for the inevitable skittles-related fatalities?

No, you wait it out, of course.

For #WindowWednesday curated by +Cheryl Cooper +Jason Kowing +J.J. Bentley +Jules Falk Hunter 

Starbucks Coffee

Times are hard if you're a large chain of coffee shops still facing a bit of public backlash over tax avoidance. Do you just wait it all out, relying on the media to find something new to get their teeth into and the laziness and short memory of the average consumer? Or do you try something to entice the customers back from Costa? Do you, perhaps, provide free front row seats to the latest sport sweeping the nation: Giant Street Skittles? Do you hope that the lure of big names from boules crossing over into the high stakes street sport world will bring in the coffee-lovers in sufficient numbers to offset compensating families for the inevitable skittles-related fatalities?

No, you wait it out, of course.

For #WindowWednesday curated by +Cheryl Cooper +Jason Kowing +J.J. Bentley +Jules Falk Hunter ___

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2013-05-12 09:52:10 (7 comments, 1 reshares, 54 +1s)Open 

A Better World Is Possible

I'm always looking for ways to improve the world - sure, not everyone approves of my eugenics experiments and the way I recently tampered with the planet's grasses in an attempt to bioengineer flame-resistant cattle (I still firmly believe that ordering steak "well done" is one of the leading causes of unrest on Earth) - so I was immensely pleased to stumble upon a demonstration taking place in Manchester last weekend where it seemed they shared my ambitions.

I tried to determine just how it was that they were planning to improve things but couldn't spot a mad-scientist-looking individual amongst the throng. Eventually, though, I did see a gentleman holding up what appeared to be step one in the group's masterplan. I stopped him.

"Throw the tories out?" I asked him. "Interesting. Interesting. And then... more »

A Better World Is Possible

I'm always looking for ways to improve the world - sure, not everyone approves of my eugenics experiments and the way I recently tampered with the planet's grasses in an attempt to bioengineer flame-resistant cattle (I still firmly believe that ordering steak "well done" is one of the leading causes of unrest on Earth) - so I was immensely pleased to stumble upon a demonstration taking place in Manchester last weekend where it seemed they shared my ambitions.

I tried to determine just how it was that they were planning to improve things but couldn't spot a mad-scientist-looking individual amongst the throng. Eventually, though, I did see a gentleman holding up what appeared to be step one in the group's masterplan. I stopped him.

"Throw the tories out?" I asked him. "Interesting. Interesting. And then what? Robotic dictatorship? Benevolent... or otherwise?"

"Huh?"

I pointed at the paper he was holding. "Throw the tories out," I said, reading it out loud for him but adding a definite article as I felt it was missing one. "No population pacification through cloud-seeding flights? No regional competitions to win liberty points? Womb-based citizen training?"

"Yeah, throw the tories out," he agreed with a puzzled look.

"Is that it?" I asked.

"It's a start," he replied, flashing me a nasty smile.

I pondered his response for a second. "But then they'll be unemployed," I said. "That hardly seems like a better world at all. Who will fill the important niche role of a self-serving group of the barely tolerable heaping misery on the masses with scant regard for anyone else?"

"That's where the trade unions come in," he said.

I let him carry on with his march then and shook my head sadly. Their plan needed a new banner; one that read A World Very Much Like This One Is Likely might do the job. And lasers. A really good plan needs lasers.___

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2013-05-01 21:55:34 (7 comments, 0 reshares, 77 +1s)Open 

Queue

"Is this the queue for Iron Man 3?"

"I... Sorry? What?"

"Iron Man 3. Robert Downey Jr reprising his role as Tony Stark in a mechanical suit. Sequel to Iron Man and its follow-up, Iron Man 2. Iron Man 3."

"You're joking, right?"

"About what?"

"About this being the queue for Iron Man 3."

"No. Why?"

"A queue by the side of the road?"

"Yes."

"A couple of benches and us lot sitting here in the sun?"

"It's not that unusual."

"I think you'll find it is."

"I was only asking."

"What's going on George?"

"This lady here wanted to know if this was the queue for Iron Man 3."... more »

Queue

"Is this the queue for Iron Man 3?"

"I... Sorry? What?"

"Iron Man 3. Robert Downey Jr reprising his role as Tony Stark in a mechanical suit. Sequel to Iron Man and its follow-up, Iron Man 2. Iron Man 3."

"You're joking, right?"

"About what?"

"About this being the queue for Iron Man 3."

"No. Why?"

"A queue by the side of the road?"

"Yes."

"A couple of benches and us lot sitting here in the sun?"

"It's not that unusual."

"I think you'll find it is."

"I was only asking."

"What's going on George?"

"This lady here wanted to know if this was the queue for Iron Man 3."

"For what?"

"Iron Man 3. With Roger..."

"Robert!"

"...Robert, yes, Robert Downey Jr."

"Never heard of it."

"Apparently it's a sequel."

"Ooh! Did you tell her no?"

"Yes, Edna, I did tell her no. I told you no, didn't I?"

"Yes you did. Well, thank you for your time anyway."

"That's okay. Iron Man 3. How odd."

"Is she leaving?"

"Yes Edna."

"Didn't she want to see Star Trek Into Darkness then?"

"I forgot to ask."___

posted image

2013-04-25 21:21:34 (4 comments, 0 reshares, 73 +1s)Open 

The Barber Shop Window

"And what can I do for you today, sir?"

"Just a little off the back and sides, and thin it out a bit, please."

"Certainly."

snip... snip...

"Lovely weather we're having."

"Mmmm, yes."

snip... snip...

"Going on holiday this year?"

"No, probably not."

"Understandable. The economy's still in a bit of a mess, isn't it?"

"You said it."

snip... snip...

"Okay then, that looks about right to me... any gel or wax on it?"

"Er, yes. Gel please."

"Gel it is."

"Ooh! That's cold!"

"Well, the testicles are very sensitive, sir."

"You're... more »

The Barber Shop Window

"And what can I do for you today, sir?"

"Just a little off the back and sides, and thin it out a bit, please."

"Certainly."

snip... snip...

"Lovely weather we're having."

"Mmmm, yes."

snip... snip...

"Going on holiday this year?"

"No, probably not."

"Understandable. The economy's still in a bit of a mess, isn't it?"

"You said it."

snip... snip...

"Okay then, that looks about right to me... any gel or wax on it?"

"Er, yes. Gel please."

"Gel it is."

"Ooh! That's cold!"

"Well, the testicles are very sensitive, sir."

"You're telling me. Well, thank you anyway. Lovely view out of this window."

"Many people say so. Would you mind giving me a hand up from the floor? I'm not as young as I used to be."___

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2013-04-16 19:09:09 (12 comments, 1 reshares, 62 +1s)Open 

Ask Me A Question

As the sign says: ask me a question.

I might even answer.

And the answer might contain some elements of truth.

But I wouldn't necessarily count on it.

Ask Me A Question

As the sign says: ask me a question.

I might even answer.

And the answer might contain some elements of truth.

But I wouldn't necessarily count on it.___

posted image

2013-04-13 12:39:19 (11 comments, 3 reshares, 64 +1s)Open 

Free House

Free house? Tom stopped dead in his tracks. It was an enticing offer. Obviously, he already had a house - the one he shared with Linda, his wife of forty years - but who couldn't use a second one? Maybe he could get around to getting one of those mistresses he'd read about and setting her up in it. Or, naturally, he could always sell the building and use the proceeds on a sports car; that was something he didn't already have.

No, no, he thought to himself. I've come out for some stationery and that's all I'm going back with. And Tom resumed his slow shuffle towards the bus stop to wait for the number 84.

Behind the windows of the building two figures glanced at one another with looks of mild frustration on their faces. The taller of the two ran his fingers through the ice cubes floating on the surface of the water in the bathtub; his... more »

Free House

Free house? Tom stopped dead in his tracks. It was an enticing offer. Obviously, he already had a house - the one he shared with Linda, his wife of forty years - but who couldn't use a second one? Maybe he could get around to getting one of those mistresses he'd read about and setting her up in it. Or, naturally, he could always sell the building and use the proceeds on a sports car; that was something he didn't already have.

No, no, he thought to himself. I've come out for some stationery and that's all I'm going back with. And Tom resumed his slow shuffle towards the bus stop to wait for the number 84.

Behind the windows of the building two figures glanced at one another with looks of mild frustration on their faces. The taller of the two ran his fingers through the ice cubes floating on the surface of the water in the bathtub; his partner placed the surgical blade he'd been holding in anticipation back onto the tablecloth by his side. "That's four now," he said forcefully.

"Patience, Charles," the tall man replied quietly, shaking the cold water from this fingertips. "Someone will come in. Someone always comes in."___

posted image

2013-04-06 10:10:59 (3 comments, 3 reshares, 64 +1s)Open 

A Warning From History

You've probably never heard of the Great Cutlery War if you're not an actual piece of cutlery, and even if you were a piece of cutlery with a Google+ account you may still never have heard of it as it was a dark period in the items' history; many knives and forks will still not mention this bloody period to their little teaspoons and sporks to this day.

You can imagine, therefore, that it took a great many meetings with lots of unsettling negotiating to finally get permission and funding for a memorial to this awful event and I was pleased to be there at the unveiling yesterday. The choice of sculpture - a reconstruction of the execution of paper cup traitors who sided with the plastic cutlery against the silverware in the Battle of Chichester Train Station - did not meet with everyone's approval, being seen as grisly by some or simply... more »

A Warning From History

You've probably never heard of the Great Cutlery War if you're not an actual piece of cutlery, and even if you were a piece of cutlery with a Google+ account you may still never have heard of it as it was a dark period in the items' history; many knives and forks will still not mention this bloody period to their little teaspoons and sporks to this day.

You can imagine, therefore, that it took a great many meetings with lots of unsettling negotiating to finally get permission and funding for a memorial to this awful event and I was pleased to be there at the unveiling yesterday. The choice of sculpture - a reconstruction of the execution of paper cup traitors who sided with the plastic cutlery against the silverware in the Battle of Chichester Train Station - did not meet with everyone's approval, being seen as grisly by some or simply inappropriate by others. However,  I commend the artist for not producing something that celebrates war and, instead, shows what terrible things people - or cutlery in this instance - can do, no matter which side of the conflict they're fighting on. Traitors or heroes? Victors or barbarians? I think the ambiguity and thoughts that it provokes make it a fitting tribute and a powerful warning to future would-be-warmongers.___

posted image

2013-03-27 20:22:38 (9 comments, 1 reshares, 69 +1s)Open 

Questions

"Hi, do you have a minute to answer a few questions?"

"That depends; are they about hats?"

"Hats? Oh, ha ha! No, no, nothing like that."

"Well that's good. I don't really know much about hats."

"No, these are questions about..."

"My wife, on the other hand, is quite knowledgeable where it comes to headwear. It's quite odd, really. I'm not sure why she knows the things she knows."

"Hmmm, that is odd, but, anyway, these questions aren't about hats at all."

"Then again, she has an irrational hatred of Peruvians - she considers them a deceptive bunch and it ires her immensely - and your hat looks like it's from that region."

"I see."

"She'd probably get quite... more »

Questions

"Hi, do you have a minute to answer a few questions?"

"That depends; are they about hats?"

"Hats? Oh, ha ha! No, no, nothing like that."

"Well that's good. I don't really know much about hats."

"No, these are questions about..."

"My wife, on the other hand, is quite knowledgeable where it comes to headwear. It's quite odd, really. I'm not sure why she knows the things she knows."

"Hmmm, that is odd, but, anyway, these questions aren't about hats at all."

"Then again, she has an irrational hatred of Peruvians - she considers them a deceptive bunch and it ires her immensely - and your hat looks like it's from that region."

"I see."

"She'd probably get quite agitated if she saw your hat, thinking you were a Peruvian. You're not a Peruvian are you?"

"I'm not a Peruvian, no."

"Mind, you'd probably deny it if you were on account of your deceptive nature."

"I... don't really know what to say to that."

"Never mind. I've got nothing against Peruvians anyway, so you can ask me anything."

"Excellent, I'll..."

"Just nothing about hats."

"It won't be about hats, I promise."

"Then fire away!"

"Great! Which would you prefer to wear: a trilby or a sombrero?"

"You said you wouldn't..."

"Por la gloria del Perú!"___

posted image

2013-03-11 20:06:56 (3 comments, 0 reshares, 78 +1s)Open 

Love Me?

"Will you still love me when I'm bald?"

"Of course. I don't love you for your hair."

"And will you still love me when I put on weight?"

"Even more than now as there will be more of you!"

"And will you still love me when I'm a giant slug who walks around in a t-shirt and no trousers in a blizzard?"

"Absolutely!"

And she did.

Love Me?

"Will you still love me when I'm bald?"

"Of course. I don't love you for your hair."

"And will you still love me when I put on weight?"

"Even more than now as there will be more of you!"

"And will you still love me when I'm a giant slug who walks around in a t-shirt and no trousers in a blizzard?"

"Absolutely!"

And she did.___

posted image

2013-03-02 08:55:29 (14 comments, 1 reshares, 68 +1s)Open 

Market Stall

"I see you're interested in my pickled onions."

"I wasn't even looking at them! How dare you! Anyway, what do you expect when you're sitting like that? Oh! You mean the ones in the jar? Oh! Ha ha! You cheeky monkey!"

"Not quite, but... we've got some eggs left and we're down to the last few jars of lemon curd and preserves. Anything take your fancy? Other than my pickled onions, of course."

"Hee hee! You are a one! No, no, what I'm really looking for is fresh cantaloupe."

"Melons?"

"They're tucked beneath my jacket where you can't see them! See! Two can play at that game! But yes, cantaloupe melons. I'm making a cake for my niece and she does love cantaloupe melons on top."

"That's... quite bizarre. No,... more »

Market Stall

"I see you're interested in my pickled onions."

"I wasn't even looking at them! How dare you! Anyway, what do you expect when you're sitting like that? Oh! You mean the ones in the jar? Oh! Ha ha! You cheeky monkey!"

"Not quite, but... we've got some eggs left and we're down to the last few jars of lemon curd and preserves. Anything take your fancy? Other than my pickled onions, of course."

"Hee hee! You are a one! No, no, what I'm really looking for is fresh cantaloupe."

"Melons?"

"They're tucked beneath my jacket where you can't see them! See! Two can play at that game! But yes, cantaloupe melons. I'm making a cake for my niece and she does love cantaloupe melons on top."

"That's... quite bizarre. No, sorry, no melons, cantaloupe or otherwise. Very difficult to get hold of cantaloupe melons when you're a dog."

"On account of the U.N. embargo? Is that still going?"

"Afraid so. One little bloody melon uprising against humans and nobody seems able to forget."

"But you've got lemon curd."

"Well, I've got some friends who are cats. I shouldn't really have it out on the stall - no, not that you saucy minx! - but I haven't been bothered yet."

"Oh, that's a shame. Oh well, best be off."

"Okay, have a good day."

"I will. You too."

"I haven't always been a dog, you know."

"What's that?"

"I said: I haven't always been a dog."

"Really?"

"Really. I used to be a puppy!"

"Oh! You!"

"That's a dog market stallholder joke! You take that with you for free, okay. Good luck with your melons."

"Thank you! And I hope someone deserving gets their hands on your pickled onions too."

#StreetPhotography #StreetPics #MonochromeWorld  ___

posted image

2013-02-27 21:01:18 (6 comments, 2 reshares, 68 +1s)Open 

Balancing Act

There comes a point in every bicyclist's life when he, she, or it discovers the singular joy that is keeping the bike as still as possible, standing on the pedals, and trying to keep balanced whilst wind, the dizzying force of the Earth's rotation, or butterflies alighting on shoulders do their utmost to assist gravity in sending the vehicle's owner crashing to the ground.

That point in life is usually around the age of seven or eight and it forms part of that area of growing up that involves trying to beat friends and impress people of the opposite or same or no sex.

Occasionally, though - just occasionally - this joy of balancing comes late in life to a cyclist. But just because it happens at an older age those desires to outdo friends or colleagues or show off aren't necessarily suppressed by wisdom. It happened today to this man and... more »

Balancing Act

There comes a point in every bicyclist's life when he, she, or it discovers the singular joy that is keeping the bike as still as possible, standing on the pedals, and trying to keep balanced whilst wind, the dizzying force of the Earth's rotation, or butterflies alighting on shoulders do their utmost to assist gravity in sending the vehicle's owner crashing to the ground.

That point in life is usually around the age of seven or eight and it forms part of that area of growing up that involves trying to beat friends and impress people of the opposite or same or no sex.

Occasionally, though - just occasionally - this joy of balancing comes late in life to a cyclist. But just because it happens at an older age those desires to outdo friends or colleagues or show off aren't necessarily suppressed by wisdom. It happened today to this man and tomorrow it might happen to you.

The women were not impressed.

The bus driver that swerved to avoid him was also not impressed.

A butterfly alighted on his shoulder and sent him sprawling.___

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