Tag Archives: photo

Things 32: Busaba Toilets, Colour Test, Slow Motion Squirrel

I saw Mirrors last night. It started off as rubbish and ridiculous as it looked from the trailer, but then got a lot better, with a suitably ridiculous climax.

This week, Quantum of Solace, no more need be said.

Owing to extreme hecticness in the next few months, I have cancelled my Cineworld Unlimited card. The Films section may well disappear for a bit.

Puzzle Part 1
I ate at a Busaba Eathai last week. When I went to the toilets I was confronted with the two signs you see in the image below. I paused, then figured I had cracked the code. Where did I go? Make a guess now, then try part 2 at the end of this email.

A link
…which is also a puzzle. Test your ‘colour IQ’


A quote or anecdote
When paying for my ticket to see ‘Mirrors’, the guy at the till dropped a one pound coin into the vat of popcorn. Pretty soon three employees were scooping the popcorn around trying to find it while a manager was shouting ‘just complete the transaction!’ at them.

A video
Link courtesy of my mum – squirrel leaping in super slow mo from Autumn Watch:


Pictures of the sun taken using science:

Puzzle Part 2
Looking at the Signs for the Busaba toilets (above) I concluded that they represented the two modes of toileting: standing and sitting. I further inferred that this implied gender. I entered the door marked by the kinked line. It was a simple square wood-panelled room, and all I could see was urinals and sinks. Urinals were not sufficient for my needs at that time.

What would you do?

Things 29: Love Talk, Photogenic Theories, Top 10 Cats 2008

(Originally sent September 2008)

You may notice at this point that Things 30 will come out the day before I turn 30. Is this a coincidence? Or was the Things hiatus earlier this year actually very carefully planned?

Still rubbish. Still not time to see them either.

A video
Here is the teaser video for my 30th birthday event:

A link
What is love? An interesting way to answer this question would be to create a web page that anyone online can edit, where they can add their opinion. Unfortunately this is not how Wikipedia is supposed to be used. Fortunately, this is how the talk page on Love *is* used, and it’s well worth a browse.

A quote
I overhead this on the street the other day:

“Fffffffffit! Fuckin’ fit, man. They are the fittest in all of South East Asia.”

The implication being that this man has assessed the fitness of not only all groups in South East Asia, but also those in the North East, North West, and South West as well. Impressive!

Last week’s puzzle
On the topic of being photogenic, I received a few replies. Xuan suggested people look different in 2D and 3D. Sian suggested that it’s actually about being comfortable with cameras, and non-photogenic people freeze up around them. This is similar to theories I have read that our perception of people is surprisingly dependent on their movements, so when we see them static it is quite different. Suzanne took this theory further by suggesting that photogenic people might be those that don’t have particularly animated faces.

In this case Yahoo Answers is very little help – but the Wikipedia page, on the other hand, is quite good, and covers some of the above theories:

I would personally add that the focal length of most cameras is not the same as that of the human eye, which can cause some subtle effects. I also once heard a great quote from a professional photographer – he said that “Women with strong character come across better in a photo when they don’t smile.” I think this is true. But do note that I don’t believe this implies the converse, which would be that women that come across well when they smile don’t have strong character!

Finally, Suzanne points out that beauty is either in the eye of the beholder; skin deep; or comes from within.

This week’s puzzle
Puzzles have been a bit serious lately so it’s time for something silly.
What is the difference between a duck?

A picture
I’ve seen a lot of lolcats since I posted a top 10 at Christmas last year. Here’s my top 10 of the ones I have seen between then and now.

Things Special: 10 Pictures Lacking Context

I was browsing my collection of internet images and noticed an interesting sub-category: Pictures Lacking Context.

Photos that beg the question”What is going on here?”, and sometimes also “How did this image come about?”

In many cases I wilfully excluded the original source of the image from the filename when I saved it just to preserve the mystery, since I rather like them in their unexplained form.

1) Press Button To Operate Donkeys.
A very clear and straightforward sign. Wait, what?

2) Competitive Whaling?

3) Bridge Out Ahead. Use Alternative Routes.
Even if this may seem relatively straightforward, you still have to ask – where is the photo being taken from?

4) Hitler Photoshop
Clearly. But why bother? What does it meeeeeeeeeeeean?

5) Ritual Raccoon Throwing
The weirdest thing is everyone is acting as if this is expected behaviour. Even the raccoon.

6) Man Chases Ducks. Also, Walks On Water.
Look at this man. Now look at yourself. You are sitting at a computer. He is running on water after ducks. Consider everything else you could be doing instead of this.

7) Performance Mining
Not only can we mine an incredible hole in the middle of a lake, we also build roads all around it for no reason. Aliens viewing this must think we are trying to communicate something.

8) We Made This
Or stopped it? Or found it perhaps? They do seem somehow proud of themselves. This is the only clue.

9) The Law of Attraction
If you collect enough chairs in one space, more chairs will inevitably be drawn there. Right?

10) The Original
The image that defined the genre. Of course, it’s actually clear what has happened in this case.

Thing 19: The Beginning of Time, Cat game, Animal Friendship

(Originally sent June 2008)

This week’s film – one line review
Wanted was an extraordinary hotch-potch of the ridiculous and the sublime, and I highly recommend it to anyone that liked the look of the trailers. Incidentally, it now has 71% on rotten tomatoes, and I can’t help noticing that WALL-E is on 98%, but we have to wait another 3 weeks for that.

My review of Wanted:


Next Week’s film


A comedy about what it would be like if someone with Superman-like powers was a degenerate reprobate played by Will Smith, which actually looks as if it could be a highly original kind of superhero story.

IMDb rating: 6.8/10
Rotten Tomatoes rating33%

A Puzzle
This week: philosophy.

One of the weirdest things about the universe is that it exists at all. Without even bringing God into it, either there was nothing and then suddenly it began, or something has been around (one way or another) forever, and neither of these two concepts seems plausible to our intuition. But in fact these are not the only two options. Can you think of any others?

A Quote
James Richardson: “The Man who sticks to his plan will become what he used to want to be.”

A Link
A game involving cats:


A video
A wild crow with “no known history of humanitarian benevolence” adopts a kitten:


A picture
Continuing the theme of cross-species friendship, an infra-red triggered camera set up to try to capture a picture of Bigfoot ended up capturing something even more bizarre – a raccoon riding on a wild hog:

All part, incidentally, of an ingenious marketing strategy by the makers of the camera: