Wednesday, October 26, 2005

A Rare British Cad

This 'Vintage' car is actually Vintage 2005.
It has been in continuous production since the thirties (apart,perhaps,from World War 2), and had a waiting list of customers during the eighties of about five years.

It is a Morgan Plus 4.
The coachwork is hand-formed aluminium stretched over an Ash-wood frame.

The engine was for a long time a 3.5 litre aluminium V8 made by Rover, the Rover V8 in fact.
This was superceded by a Ford unit when the Rover engine finally ceased production.

The vehicle meets modern European safety requirements despite its appearance, and there is still reputed to be a substantial waiting period, although the younger management decided to up production and liquidate the list to pay for investment.

It would be a Gentleman's car, if it wasn't for the sporty image and the fact that Bristol is the gentleman's car.

Sunday, October 23, 2005

And Another Thank You.

My buddy is back from Turkey.
Bearing gifts, of course.
One imitation diamond-studded Rolex Oyster Perpetual, and:
a big bottle of Raki, also known as 'Lions Milk'.
The Raki is strong stuff, should keep me off the beer for a week and the watch has a real self-winding mechanism, date and day and seems to keep time.
All in all a most bodaceous day, dudes!

Saturday, October 22, 2005

Thank You Mister Gates.

I am an engineer.
I use programming languages, SDKs and packages.
I have spent nine years living in hope that I would work for an employer who would supply me with the right equipment, or training, or opportunities to expand.
This has not happened.
Every initiative has been my own, financially and morally.

It is a year since I stopped working as a commercial engineer.
I have made countless applications, and one thing has become clear.

Recruitment decisions are controlled in England by lazy, prejudiced people, who, embittered by their own efforts to acquire knowledge and skills, expect applicants to possess an identical skill set plus anything else they may consider desirable, such as a skill they have admired for no rational cause in others claiming admission to the various elites.

There are many complaints about Bill Gates and Microsoft, and many allegations.

Here are some facts.
Today, I bought a fully legal edition of Microsoft Visual Studio 97 for about £200.
I already have VC++6.0, so all I've taken from this Enterprise Edition(at least that works with 2000Pro)are VB5.0,VJ++,VFoxPro(compatible with SQL/Oracle),VSourceSafe and the massive MSDN library.
It may be old, but for £200 I can acquire the skills that keep me permanently in well-paid employment for as long as I want.
Two weeks ago an employer asked for SourceSafe.
I actually had SQL6.5 as well, but this won't work except with NT4.0, even though 2000Pro is NT-based.

The point is, the End User License Agreement doesn't ask much.
Three things.
1)Don't distribute copies(steal).
2)Don't decompile(steal ideas).
3) Take anything you like and use it, sell it on, but do something useful of your own with it.

So what is the problem?He won't let you take over?Boo-bloody-hoo!

Wednesday, October 19, 2005

Another Interesting German.

This car was something of a heresy when it first came out. Porsche had more or less stuck to the formula with the 911, since the first derivative of the Beetle, which was essentially little more to Volkswagen than Arbarth was to Fiat.
But this is the Porsche 928, and a nice example too.
Can't tell you the vintage since the plates are personalised, but I'd guess it is a late model.

When it first came out in the 70's it was hailed as revolutionary, shocking even, and shockingly expensive.
The engine was an all-alloy V8, which didn't employ cylinder liners(apparently).
The aerodynamics (a burgeoning popular talking point in 70's Europe),were alleged to be not all that good due to the classic grand-tourer rear end.

And it was a very, very expensive car for the day.

But among afficionados it established an early and enduring following as 'something special'.
It was phased out in the early 90s.

Tuesday, October 18, 2005

Are British Police Wonderful?

That South Leeds school I reported on has had another riot.
Most perplexing.
Everybody thought the Police had sorted the security situation out.
And the school is a veritable fortress:
Or not, as the case may be:
This GKN-Chep pallet has been used as a ladder to scale the school fence ever since the first brawl.
It has been left in open sight all that time, and nobody, not even the large groups of Policemen standing next to it, has done anything at all about it.

History?You Can't Tell Them About History!

The British Paranoid Government, ever mindful of the alleged opposition of the 'people' to 'asylumseekers', today announced that it had signed an agreement with Libya that anybody sent back would not be endangered or tortured.
They have 'received an undertaking' in other words.

They added that they hope to conclude similar agreements with many other countries.

So next time the swine that pass for the authorities in these countries just carry on torturing, maiming, brainwashing and killing their citizens, and are overjoyed when escapees are forcibly returned, those cunts in London can wave their pieces of paper about and tell the 'electorate' what a good job they are doing by keeping out these innocent victims.

But wearing the Cross of St.George is racist, except in Malta and Georgia.

Monday, October 17, 2005

From The Sublime to The Ridiculous

This is not a Reliant Robin, the famous three-wheeled car.
This is a Reliant Kitten.
The Kitten was a four wheeled version of the Robin. The Robin always had the distinct advantage that ' motor-tricycles' were taxed for the road the same as motorcycles, ie a 90% tax reduction every year.
And there would be many years.
The Reliant cars were glass-fibre bodied, so they didn't rust. Like the clean example in the photo. Taken today, in 2005, the 'S' registration plate indicates the car was built in 1978.
Still clean.
Of course, the 'Kitten' is rare because it lacked the hard-headed economic benefit of getting a real car for the tax-rate of a motorcycle, so fewer were built.

For many years the Reliant company was also the target of envy for mainstream car drivers, since it also built the Reliant Scimitar, a full-fat sports hatchback with a Ford 3-Litre V-6.

We'll all have to live in hope that I get a shot of one of those. They were really nice!

Saturday, October 15, 2005

Here At Last.....

This is the car I compared with the Fiat X-19, albeit a late, convertible model.
It is the Triumph TR7, as produced by what was once the Standard-Triumph motor company.
Triumph always had a reputation for producing wonderful sports cars,(TR2,TR3,TR4,TR5,TR6,Spitfire,GT6) and the sporting saloons(Triumph Dolomite,Triumph 2000, Triumph 2500).
For a long time the Triumph company built its reputation on dadvanced straight sixes, the 'PI' designation referring to early (automotive)fuel injection from Lucas(now TRW).
The Bosch injection was based on German wartime experience, and was already working properly when Triumph and Lucas were playing catch-up,which was a problem.
Then came the disastrously underdeveloped V8 for the Stag model; a beautiful car, nevertheless destroyed by the merger with BMC and US regulations due to the 'oil crisis'.

The TR7 was the great white hope, the last gasp; failure meant political end for Triumph.
And fail it did.
The car in the picture shows how it was always meant to be, a convertible.
Just before launch, feared American regs meant a change to a solid roof, which critics didn't like.
The engine was a clever and advanced answer to the fuel crisis, a 2-litre four which may have been a multi-valve(the Dolomite Sprint saloon used an 1850, 3-valve per cylinder design, again ten years ahead of the competition).
But the critics whined about the loss of the six-cylinder engine.
Judge for yourself.
Obviously, build-quality issues were all to do with the overall crappy business of which Triumph was now a much-milked part.
Not technically.
What a bunch of losers eh?

Wednesday, October 12, 2005

No Prizes For Knowing This One

Nice example of a Beetle.
Designed by Ferdinand Porsche in the thirties for the Nazi Party, and put into limited production as the 'volkswagen' or 'peoples car'.
Production was restarted under British Army management in the forties. The swastika was dropped from the VW symbol.
Production ended in Brazil in the 90s, but the car lives on.
Not the new 'Beetle'( a reskinned Golf), but in the Porsche 911, which retains the original design layout to this day.

Monday, October 10, 2005

Masonry? It's Only Bricks And Mortar.

Like original communism, the velvet slurry causing the malaise which threatens to destroy civilisation, is a product of Western 'intellectuals', beavering feverishly away in their openly hidden lairs, using mind-tricks to tell us they can 'move along'.

To what am I referring?
The picture is of a pub near Leeds Market, called the 'Mason's Arms'; it is now a tattoo parlour, hasn't been a pub in years.
Free Masons are in decline. They were anti-communist. They were forced into the shadows, and so became a 'secret society'.
Thence to being a 'menace' was a short step. Their very reticence was their downfall.

So. Secret society eh? Stamped on. No more threat. Communism, eh? That all packed in. Just a ghost.
But the people who threatened to make communism real are still there. They haven't gone away. They were buttoned up by the tantrum society threw in the 80s, but they are just biding their time.
They still hold most of the cards.
What passes for a secret society these days?
No signals. Possibly a little recognition, like a dog smelling something. But even then no overt welcome. Just the quiet snicker of brotherhood, not a feeling of companionship as such, more a faint acknowledgement, an alliance in search of an enemy.

The enemy isn't all that hard to find. Once the brotherhood has honed its instincts in University, it learns to recognise the 'un-ness' of genuine ability.
The genuine ability that creates the things that these second raters spend years learning.
But who can be bothered with that, eh?
Such a drag.
So stop them inventing.
Stop them working.
Stop them...... living.

I am the enemy.

Sunday, October 09, 2005

Where? Tadcaster!

This is the oldest brewery in Yorkshire.
It was built in 1758 and is currently owned by John Smith Breweries.
It was originally the site of brother Sam Smith's brewery, and still makes Sam Smith's Old Brewery Bitter and John Smith's 'Magnet', a fine beer.

The town of Tadcaster, sadly, no longer has a railway. But there is a good bus service on the 'Coastliner' which runs from Leeds to all points up to the coastal resorts of Filey, Bridlington and Whitby. The buses are comfortable, fast and cheap.
Scarborough still has the train, but if you wanted to go to both, you could get to Tadcaster on the bus, continue up to Malton and catch the train there.

These facts are important, as there are a lot of pubs in Tadcaster.
You see, on the other side of town is a Coors-owned brewery.

Thursday, October 06, 2005


Just had a day off.
Just been to a place called Milton Keynes.
In the 40s the socialists decreed that 'New Towns' would be built; the 'slum' dwelling populations of the real cities would be 'decanted'(yes,decanted!) ie ethnically cleansed, into these new barracks.

The jewel in the crown would be the entirely non-organic New City of Milton Keynes.
Not to be confused with John Maynard Keynes (except in spirit), the new city would be a paeon to the 'science' of planning, with residential and 'industry' areas kept separate, and a grid syste copied from Amerika.

If I tell you that the local newspaper is still called 'Citizen' in 2005, you'll get the picture.

All the main roads on the grid are four-lane highways, with speed limits of 70mph, so pulling out in front of the Politbureau's convoy is not advisable.
They have wonderful names such as H8 and V4, so navigation is easy.

Trouble is, there's nowhere to go.

The alleged centre of the city has acres of car parking intersperced with glass lozenges that sit in so much space they practically moo. There is a 'shopping centre' lozenge, a 'railway station' lozenge( an enormous block with two platforms underneath), and various other city-type buildings.
By the time they built the arena, lozenges were out of fashion, so it is some sort of curved thing.

However, they apparently built lots of cycle-paths. Which is nice.

Anyway, I took my camera.

Having found nothing to photograph, I obtained this stock picture of the things that really put Milton Keynes into popular lore.

These cows sit by a road and are made of concrete.
I understand that they were painted later.

Wednesday, October 05, 2005

Over The Hills And Far Away.

What on Earth?
It's a late model Corvette convertible, with genuine US plates and it's in Yorkshire.
Probably belongs to one of the Menwith Hill Mob; they would be the only people with the financial muscle or motive to import one of these from the US.
Nice alloys.
Discs all round, but they look small and they are undrilled single rotor.
Apparently Carter-era Corvettes could only do 75mph flat out.
The car that looked fast standing still probably was...........standing still.

But I hear that this version can make a fair lick; if only they could cope with British roads.

Tuesday, October 04, 2005

I Just Knew It!

"We'll hang out the washing on the Siegfried Line, if the Siegfried Line's still there!"

I've always suspected it, but now I have the proof: this country is being hung out to dry!

Monday, October 03, 2005

From Major To Minor

This is a Morris Minor.
The Minor was in continuous production from 1947 until 1973.
It was designed by Alec Issigonis, who produced the original Mini in 1959.
Said the owner of this example, Geoffrey S. Smith of Wakefield:"I worked for a Morris garage for many years.This is a 1959 model, the best car Morris ever produced, although I prefer my four-door due to the stainless-steel door-frames. The first models had high revving engines as the gearing was all wrong, and they only lasted about 20,000 miles;the pistons were low quality in those days. This one has done about 173,000 miles...."
He talked for quite a while and was happy to be mentioned along with his proudly preserved Minor.
A real classic.
Anyone wanting advice should google the Morris Minor Owners Club.

Sunday, October 02, 2005

Just Shameless

Ooops. Never realised that this is what Perky really looks like.
You see, it has come to the attention of the management that Perky is advertising herself as a 'spiritual healer'.
I suppose that would be the flip side of sticking the boot in then, eh?

Shameless Promotion

Hold it...hold it.. yeah, beautiful baby....just hold that pose...yeah, real tiger...just one more...and I'm done.

Quite cold today. Winter approaching. The pub wasn't open when I got there, but I was #2 in the queue, so I started talking to #1.
He was an ex-Redcap(Royal Military Police), 9 year veteran, Egypt, Cyprus, and before he volunteered for that little lot he used to be in the Guards.
Anyway, his mate came along, the pub opened up(because we were there), and I went into the snug and took a few photos of my beer(to remember it by).
Thing is, as you can tell from the pumps, this is a Samuel Smith pub, in Yorkshire, and the beer comes from Oak barrels, and doesn't get re-circulated. So, it's a fresh, malty 4% bitter.
The best part is, a whole pint costs £1.36 ($2.10,$2.95CN), so I didn't even need to break a note for my session.
Cheers everybody. Hope the photos don't make you too thirsty.

Saturday, October 01, 2005

Distinguished Building-Yorkshire Evening Post

This is a photo of the Hotel Metropole in Leeds, around the corner fro the railway station, taken this afternoon.
The hotel was the subject of a fascinating Yorkshire Evening Post cover article.

Apparently in April 1961 a Russian defector was debriefed in Room 31 of the hotel.

He described the exact means by which the Soviet State could be paralysed for 90 days by a couple of high-explosive bombs placed in spitoons close to the Russian War Ministry.

He told his story to the CIA and MI6, in that room.

In 1980, my friends and I would round off an evening by drinking in the Piano Lounge of the Hotel Metropole.

Oddly enough, the pianist often played 'As Time Goes By'. Do you think he knew something?