Sunday, March 25, 2007


I recently came across the phrase Steampunk online. Turns out its a recent style of re-imaging modern concepts, but setting them in the Steam age, around Jules Vernes time in the 1860's. As far as I can tell it seems to have started big when a Manga cartoon came out in Japan, charting the adventures of Steamboy, a boy who lived in 1860's London who is sent a mysterious steam producing orb from his uncle in America, to keep it from the evil O'Hara group.

Seems that modern artists and animators are applying this concept to pop culture with suprising effect. I heard one artist did a serious of drawings of the video game Thief in this style.

These drawing are an artists take on the Star Wars world, in the Steampunk style.

Pretty damn cool, really.

Saturday, March 24, 2007

Something reflective

I was sent this poem by email. As I can be a sentimental old git sometimes, I thought I would post it.

When an old man died in the geriatric ward of a small hospital near
Tampa, Florida, it was believed that he had nothing left of any value.
Later, when the nurses were going through his meager possessions, they
Found this poem. Its quality and content so impressed the staff that
Copies were made and distributed to every nurse in the hospital. One
Nurse took her copy to
Missouri . The old man's sole bequest to
Posterity has since appeared in the Christmas edition of the News
Magazine of the St. Louis Association for Mental Health. A slide
Presentation has also been made based on his simple, but eloquent, poem.

And this little old man, with nothing left to give to the world, is now
The author of this "anonymous" poem winging across the Internet.

Crabby Old Man

What do you see nurses? ......What do you see?
What are you thinking.... ..when you're looking at me?
A ! Crabby old man, ....not very wise,
Uncertain of habit .......with faraway eyes?

Who dribbles his food.......and makes no reply.
When you say in a loud voice....."I do wish you'd try!"
Who seems not to notice .....the things that you do.
And forever is losing ............. .. A sock or shoe?

Who, resisting or not......... ..lets you do as you will,
With bathing and feeding ....... The long day to fill?
Is that what you're thinking? Is that what you see?
Then open your eyes,' re not looking at me.
I'll tell you who I am ....... As I sit here so still,
As I do at your bidding, I eat at your will.
I'm a small child of Ten......with a father and mother,
Brothers and sisters .......who love one another

A young boy of Sixteen ...........with wings on his feet
Dreaming that soon now. ..........a lover he'll meet.
A groom soon at Twenty heart gives a leap.
Remembering, the vows.....! .... That I promised to keep.

At Twenty-Five, now ........... I have young of my own.
Who need me to guide ........ And a secure happy home.
A man of Thirty ........ My young now grown fast,
Bound to each other ......... With ties that should last.

At Forty, my young sons ........have grown and are gone,
But my woman's beside see I don't mourn.
At Fifty, once more, .......... Babies play 'round my knee,
Again, we know children ......... My loved one and me.

Dark days are upon me .......... My wife is now dead.
I look at the future ............ .I shudder with dread.
For my young are all rearing ........young of their own.
And I think of the years...... And the love that I've known.

I'm now an old man......... And nature is cruel.
Tis jest to make old age .......look like a fool.
The body, it crumbles.... ......grace and vigor, depart.
There is now a stone....... .where I once had a heart.

But inside this old carcass ...... A young guy still dwells,
And now and again battered heart swells.
I remember the joys........ ...... I remember the pain.
And I'm loving and living...... .... over again.

I think of the years ...all too few......gone too fast.
And accept the stark fact......... That nothing can last.
So open your eyes, people and see..
Not a crabby old man. Look closer....see. .......ME! !

Friday, March 16, 2007

I've decided to take early redundancy from work!

I cant believe it. After 14 years I have decided to take an early redundacy/severance package and leave my job for the Government in the Department for Work & Pensions.

Its been crap for a number of years. There is a total freeze and pay and progression after the Chancellor Gordon Brown announced as an election promise he would cut the number of civil servants there was. He pledged to reduce the DWP by 25% over 3 years. Hence the freeze in pay & progression. The killer was I had gone for promotion in a promotion board and passed it. I was even notified of my passing. Then the announcement. Because the board hadnt finished running they cancelled it! And now promotion chances not been for 3 years.

So they offered me £27000 to go and I have taken it. The only problem is I have no idea what I am going to do next. All I do know is I have a chance to try something new. So I am.

A couple of months bumming around should do it. I am a training officer/consultant by trade so I am going to try a bit of self employment doing that. But I also fancy doing a bit of extra work which I have done in the past. So try my luck and see if I can make ends meet doing something that I might enjoy. If it all fails I will wave the white flag and re-join the rat race again, but until then... who knows!

Wish me luck!

Thursday, March 08, 2007


You know I love moons. This is Neptunes moon Triton, as seen by Voyager 2.

Another cracked chunk of rock, but with ice volcanoes!