Archive for canon

Hornby King

Posted in canon, canon g10, copyright, foam, hornby, Humour, image, internet, media, model railroad, model railway, modelling, photography, trainspotting with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , on September 8, 2014 by norvenmunky

Hornby Today Hornby’s Press department released an image (see above) of the latest Hornby product to be announced. In an unusual step they are allowing anybody to reproduce the image, it being “royalty” free.

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Patience

Posted in canon, canon g10, Canon G12, Darwin Awards, disruption, entertainment, Humour, internet shopping, life, media, photography, travel, Uncategorized with tags , , , , on February 28, 2011 by norvenmunky

Well every now and then we all have to say ‘stop the world I want to get off’. Well the ‘Berg’ has decided to do just that. He’s taken a leaf from the book of life and headed out on his ‘road trip’. Nowadays its fashionable for yoof to have a ‘Gap’ year after leaving skool, when they run around in grey clothing to the sounds of popular beat combo’s. Berg being an experienced member of the school of life has departed these shores and like NM a good few years before, slung the backpack on, (a double berger then) to circumnavigate the world. Whether he takes the full NM life experience trip and returns with tales of derring do, being woken by cops with guns, smiling sweetly to avoid subsequent arrest, tearing up parking lots in Z28’s, winding up border guards, getting on local radio stations for having a ‘cute accent’, and laying out in the fields drinking beer and shouting ‘shooting star’ remains to be seen, but I hope he does, he deserves it. The good stuff that is, not the cops, guns, arrest, thing, though to be fair that has a certain ‘cred’ factor so long as you don’t tell the wife/kids. Before he left, he sampled the true delights of camera shop customer service, so he’d remember what he was missing.

Nuff said, over to the ”Berg” …

I have a copy of the G12. However therein lies the usual tale of gash service etc. You may recall a few years ago the lens purchasing saga. I knew the risk of engaging Bristol Cameras to supply the said device. Any way a week previously I had phoned and they said the camera would be there but the housing might be a day or two later. I went ahead with it.

Then last Wednesday, as per the verbal agreement, Berg shuffled into their city centre premises next door to the site of the previous debacle. Armed with a copy of the order number hastily scribed on a small piece of paper I quoted the digits to the staff: or at least I tried. I had entered a shop some ten feet square; not the largest retail space on the planet. Three staff members were distributed about the shop and not one acknowledged my existence for at least a minute. It eventually dawned on one of these creatures that the idiot stood there expectantly was that rarest of beasts; a fecking analogue customer!!
The code was quoted, not exactly Davinci, just a few integers and characters, the sort of things commonly found on digital devices. The expression became pained, and that was just the ‘assistant’.
“Oh! But we call or e-mail to say the stock is in.” The Berg doesn’t remember this and is sure he would not have graced their doorstep before checking had he known this was required. He remained calm; recalling the saga of the 50mm lens.
A scintilla of service crept into the proceedings.
“Let me check if we have any stock”. The staffer began his search at one end of a shelf affixed near the ceiling. Berg glanced up and spotted the distinctive group of Canon boxes at the opposite end of the shelf to the staffer’s search. The products were distressingly arranged by manufacturer; Canon, Sigma, Nikon etc. Now; call me a bluff old traditionalist, but if I had a ten foot square shop and I worked in it all the time and a customer walked in asking for a Canon camera I’m not too sure I would begin my search at the other end of the shelf. Indeed I’d like to think I would derive some professional satisfaction from knowing what the feck I was doing and having a reasonable grip on what was stored where. We are not talking about some Amazonian warehouse of football pitch dimensions.
“Let me just check again” this time he disappeared to the back room. Berg had already decided he was going to bin this pantomime but remained waiting patiently. The assistant returned and continued to fidget with his ear; a near constant companion of proceedings so far. No joy.
He then picked up the phone and displayed yet more incompetence as he checked the whereabouts of the accessory Berg had also ordered. Remember Berg was told it would be available maybe a day or so later.
“No; we won’t have that until mid March at the earliest”
As a result of residing at her majesty’s pleasure some years ago Berg has been left with, shall we say, an arcane skill set. He repressed all of them and departed the fix; leaving the staff with the ability to walk and talk; and their premises intact.
Time was of the essence so being in a city centre shopping area, Berg trudged off in search of other camera emporia. He found one and walked in. A brief recce revealed a copy of the desired model on the shelf. The tried and tested point and grunt mode of communication succeeded. Moments later he emerged onto the high street with a brand new G12, twenty beer tokens cheaper, so the resultant saving could be spent on beer, wimin and guns, (this is Bristol after all).

The left over cash he’d waste.

Another 20 tons of rubber dog shit leaves Nam,
One day Berg, all this will be yours, with your luck that is ...

Paradise City

Posted in canon, canon g10, entertainment, environment, exhibition, Humour, internet shopping, life, London, london underground, media, model railroad, model railway, modelling, photography, rail, travel, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , on January 2, 2011 by norvenmunky

Albert Square 2010

Albert Square

We’ve all got our idea of a Paradise City, places we’ve been, lived, worked, read about, well this is mine, unashamedly, London. Where it all started was Lambeff, Albert Square to be precise, not that crappy beeb London one, but the real, sahf of the riva, see above. I never really thought about why I felt such an affinity with the Kings Cross area when I worked there, but re-visiting pictures it seems that the similar architecture of Georgian three storey architecture with basements and Portland stone probably made an impact on the two year old NM prior to heading out of town, a relief then to realise it wasn’t just the drink, prostitutes and drugs that captivated me on my return. Sometimes I wasted my money on toy trains.

MRM Kings Cross London

That led me to working at the Model Railway Manufacturing Co. Ltd. of York Way. The building has survived the recent development of the area and is now a restaurant. That will be somewhat ironic for the previous staff members who worked there, in that you can now order food to be eaten in the building, rather than using our shop intercom from three buildings away. That could be used, (allegedly), to order food in a cafe, Renzo’s, (three doors away), much to the dissapointment of the proprietor whom on opening an unsummoned dumb waiter, was to see ‘Dooamaneg’ glaring balefully at him on a grease laden sloppy plate…

The friendships built up there still last to this day, some of the antics still bring a wry smile to the face. As youngsters into ‘London’ it was important to find out the area, so we had a street map on the wall, theoretically, for customers who pre googlespace/mytube/facetwatter, wanted to know how to get from place to place. Well there was only one way to find out. Research.

St Pauls

There wasn’t a reseach budget as such, just an unerring faith in our ability to leave the shop at 13:01pm (without a map), ‘RLF’ for twenty to twenty five minutes, and then deliberately find a different route back to be through the door at 13:59pm. The result then being plotted on the map using the shop as the centre and a radius/range being drawn in with a compass. Therefore if a customer asked how long it took to walk to X, you could theoretically give an answer …

Thames from the 'right' side of the river ...

Now, Nm’s regular readers will already be seeing ‘potential’ for interesting and frank, free flowing discussion with ‘management’ on return to the shop, and to be fair there were a few occasisions when such discussion took place. I can recall one particular return trip that went ‘a bit wrong’. We’d headed south to Holborn, via Bloomsbury on a beautiful spring day, but had headed back to route up Grays Inn road. We’d been a bit too long and it wasn’t the first time we’d been bollocked for being late, so the pressure was on. The lack of map bit us here and we were actually lost but continued ducking and diving up side streets to head north. We came across a small playing field and thought we could see a way out at the far end, so we were ‘safe’ and stated to walk. At the end of the field we came to a brick wall, literally, about 8ft high, too high to see over. Doing the old schoolboy run at it and jump, scrabble up and sit on the top worked. The only problem there was, was a concrete yard the other side but with a bigger drop, and expensive cars, probably a law firms parking area. A shout and we simultaneously took our chance and dropped into the yard, splitting in opposite directions, just like the filums. We exited through two different gates running, followed by shouts of very rude words, from an old boy presumably in charge of ‘security’ having served on the Russian Convoys, and used to chasing cabin boys all over the decks. We got back to the shop in time for a summary bollocking, and every siren that sounded that afternoon had us on tenterhooks.

What it did do was to provide a better than ‘the knowledge’ knowledge of the part of North London around the Kings Cross area, including all the street life that entailed.

Trafalgar Square

Street life occaisionally came into the shop, where it was the job of whoever wasn’t ‘busy’ to remove them. Nm had a absolute pearler of a case where he very quickly learnt one of lifes lessons, this was re-inforced by ones colleagues ‘QFO’ing as soon as they realised the Quatermass pit sized whole Nm had dug himself. A lady came into the shop, looking a little distressed, but nothing un-usual to raise alarm bells. (Even at that time Nm was pretty streetwise, being able to identify a pimp/pro/ned/alchy/smackhead at twenty paces). It was a lunchtime, ‘may I use your toilet she asked?’, seemed reasonable, didn’t smell odd, she looked alright, ‘clean’, if you know what I mean, if you don’t … Well, yep Nm says and showed her the way (to the bog).

After about five mins she hadn’t re-appeared. Helpfull comments and queries such as ‘is she still in there?’ from my colleagues rapidly followed, countered with ‘Yeh, she’s probably reading a paper or summat’ from an increasingly intrigued worried Nm. Well a good half an hour passed, questioned through the door, ‘are you alright luv?’ from Nm, his colleagues helpfully asking ‘how are you going to get her out then?’ When on Top Gear one of the guys gets left by the others whilst taking the piss as they leave is just so true, it’s almost a right of passage, and when it happens to you with the right bunch of mates it almost makes it alright. Now the crapper was on the stairs and Nm had to hovver near it to appear like he was just going for one whenever the bosses appreared, to prevent them asking any awkward questions, like ‘WTF is the smackhead doing in the crapper?’

After a good hour or so Nm was thinking I’m going to
a/ have to go in, but the door is locked from the inside …
b/ tell the boss the smell isn’t in fact one of Bri’s unholy ones
c/ just run away

There was a dreadful groaning from the crapper, which was peculiar for Nm. It at least meant that the tart wasn’t dead, but filled him with the dread of getting the aforementioned ‘trollied’ bint out of the shop, negotiating her past a counter full of customers, ‘interested’ colleagues and a security camera attached to a CCTV. The thought of dragging or firemans lifting an unconscious bird through the shop and being caught on camera (again) just filled him with ‘bowell water’ making fear. It is at these times that you realise why adrenaline is brown and leads to real moments of fear inspired brilliance. There were two front doors to the shop, No14 and No12, No12 rarely used. If the bint could be steered through the rear stock room, past the phone and map to No12, there was a real chance she could be released into the wild relatively discretely. So Nm managed to lift the latch of the door at No12, easing it shut so the boss couldn’t see it was open, and as soon as the bint opened the door to the karzi, at about the hour + fifteen mark, he very quickly shoved, escorted her to the other door where on leaving she belched a projectile stream of the foulest smelling puke Nm’s ever had the displeasure to encounter. Well you’ve read the blog, you can easily imagine…
Nm slammed the door behind her and turned to see the boss who had come down the other stairs looking at him very oddly. ‘Whats up’ he said?, ‘Oh just some drunken tart who’s puked in 12’s doorway’ Nm straightface replied. Seemed to work. There were a few comments re the whiff from No14’s crapper though, it stank as though someone had emptied the entire waste contents of Smithfield, Covent Garden and Billingsgate and a bit of soggy cardboard into the smallest room. Nm gave it a quick clean, and declared it clear of sharps and fit for use, (the tart that is, not the bog).

In true team spirit the smell was blamed on Bri.
It’s what mates are for.

Millenium Bridge

Albert Sq piccies from http://www.flickr.com/photos/sczscz/

Shot Down in Flames

Posted in canon, Darwin Awards, Humour, insurance, life, photography, Uncategorized, Zoo with tags , , , , , on September 6, 2010 by norvenmunky

'Management' UK PLc

Today NM has been ‘painting da house’ in a literal sense. Those of you who’ve been here know the top of ‘da house’ is a long way up. To get to the top of the house one needs ladders (plural), or one fecking huge one. NM chose the latter which was delivered today by a cheery bastard, whom as he unloaded them said ‘It’s a nice day for it’, clearly not having a scooby as to what ‘it’ was for NM for the remainder of the day. NM just looked at him with his best ‘sandwich filler’ killer look as he then asked what job NM was going to do with them. NM nodded backwards to the house, and wrote that he understood that:

A/ NM should carry the ladders so the ends were ‘high enough to clear other peoples heads’.
B/ When carrying it NM should remember the ‘overhang’ in front and behind him.
C/ The temptation to look down should be resisted.
D/ NM shouldn’t erect it in a high wind.
E/ NM was not to forget the basic rule, ‘One man, One ladder’.
Nm was now unsure as to whether he was signed up as an extra for a Laurel and Hardy movie or Mad Max Beyond the Thunderdome,

‘Two Ladders Enter, One Ladder leaves’ …

Seeing the paint tub, the gable end and the ladder (or film contract I’d just signed), his cogs engaged. ‘Kinell, rather you than me’ was the wisdom he imparted as he QFO’ed, en route to deliver a cement mixer to someone whom would be wondering if they thought he was going to be making ‘Italian diving boots’, as he signed the consent form. Ta, ta a lot.

It got NM thinking about a few things though, recently, NM having an interest in photography came across an interweb thread about the latest Canon upgrade to the 400mm F2.8. If you don’t know what they are, they are the big grey dustbin sized lens’ that you often see sports snappers use. There were a number of posts along the liners of ‘ooh its expensive’ (£11k GBP), ‘Thats crazy money. Surely they will drop sharpley in a few months when they stop being “new”. Still, that puts the 400mm 2.8 at £1500 more then the 800mm 5.6’ and, ‘They’ve reduced its weight by 1.5kg ‘What’s 1.5kgs less when you’re still humping 3.8 kgs around’. You do have to wonder which solar sytem they inhabit if you understand what the lens is about and the pro end of the markets technical requirements.

'Window lickers' Move on, nothing to see here ...

Posts like those make me think of monkeys at the zoo. It’s like offering the monkeys Tesco ‘Value’ peanuts, or KP’s finest and asking for an informed opinion on their respective merits. We all know they’d make cock all difference to the monkeys as they’d still be sticking them up their @rses not appreciating that ‘KP is committed to selling only the best quality products, this is why we are the UK’s favourite nut brand’. It’s a bit like watching foamers debate which is best, Ferrari or Porsche, and you just know the closest they’ve ever got to one is licking the windows at HR Owens and watching endless repeats of Top Gear on ‘Dave’ …

The other day at Asda, NM and the till assistant were left almost speechless at the Asda management ability to over engineer the simplest of processes for security purposes, and render it utterly worthless as part of the same process. If there were ‘Darwin Awards’ for management policies this would likely be a strong contender. Feel free to send your Darwin Management Awards in, there’s no prizes, least of all for the mangers concerned …

Our Asda has a pay to park, ( no issue with that), take the parking ticket refund stub in and get a refund after spending ‘X’, beer tokens. ( we’re probably all on the same page at this point). Pay at till for goods.
Asda bloke at till says: ‘Would you like parking taken off bill or cash refund?’
NM ‘Cash please’
Asda bloke ‘Ahh you need to go to customer services, they do the cash, I can’t give you the cash, I’m not allowed to open the till if you’re paying by card for security reasons’
NM (seeing huge queue of ‘Neds’ waiting to buy fags), ‘Fair enuff, take it off the bill please’
Asda bloke ‘OK sorry about that etc’ takes stub, swipes it, completes card transaction, and, as if by magic, the till opens to allow him to place the stubb in the till …
NM ‘So you can’t open the till to give me the pound refund due to security, but the till has to open to allow you to put the refund stub in?
Asda bloke ‘Yup’, looks at me with a twinkle in his eye and says ‘Minds greater than our’s sir, minds greater than ours’…

There’s almost certainly some utter, utter, buffoon out there, who thinks that his Asda ‘colleagues’ are significantly more ‘secure’ all thanks to his efforts …

Todays score: Darwin 1 Management 0

Quadropedia

Posted in canon g10, environment, farming, food, Humour, life, organic, pets, photography, sheep, Uncategorized with tags , , , , on July 25, 2010 by norvenmunky

This week, norvenmunky has been tasked to ‘help’, as the neighbour has gone away on hols.

Most times it’s please feed the cat, the goldfish, walk the dog, you know the form. Last time it seemed an odd instruction at the time to feed the cat the goldfish, and on their return during the subsequent acrimonious debrief, I felt it wasn’t my fault the comma was missing in the original instructions. All I did was follow them.
However, this past week I have mostly been left in charge of eighteen sheep, and an orchard.

The orchard is pretty easy to look after, so far there’s no recorded instances as far as I’m aware of an orchard escaping, and it’s probably relatively easy to locate 4 acres of fruit trees if they escaped.

An Orchard, yesterday.

Sheep however, despite being stereotyped as ‘thick as shite’ are a different matter. Apart from wandering round eating grass they do appear to have a fairly well organised escape comittee. No doubt the wandering round is a ruse , to lull one into a false sense of security as they discretely drop tunnel earth, (thats not an NM euphamism), from their trouser legs about the orchard. What you’ll have is eighteen sheep, with seventeen of them ostensibly ‘thick as two short planks’, and one criminal mastermind. The master crim however has an apprentice whom is always carefully hidden amongst the flock. Thus when the master criminal escapes, or goes ‘missing’ in a Waitrose moment, ‘Yes sonny you were talking to it yesterday in a field’ … there is always the apprentice to instantly take over the reins. His primary duty is to find the way out through the clucking hedge that you had previously thought would keep North Koreans at bay.

The object of the week was to count said sheep daily, check them over, fortunately not in glove puppet style, feed them, and ensure that the orchard was ‘secure’. Now you’d think counting eighteen sheep would be relatively easy, in a sort of one to eighteen, and then stop sort of way. Over four acres of orchard where there are assorted hiding places, and tunnels (allegedly), it’s not quite so easy. And they all look the same, ‘ish’.

17 Sheep, see what I mean about counting?

The fastest way to count sheep is to get them in one area and try to stop them moving around too much, this was done by throwing feed into a trough, and then standing back from the ensuing chaos. The older sheep very soon got wise to this and as soon as you appeared at the gate, they were there in full chav mugging mode. This made it a bit challenging to get through the gate without being trampled, and without losing any. It’s fine being Brian Hanrahan on HMS Herpes and saying “I counted them all out and I counted them all back in,” but even pilots are easier to control than a herd of unruly sheep. Trust me, I know …

Look Luv, I'm a Herbivore.
If you don't mind, I'll get w#####ed on 'windfall' later in the season, ta.

Wot we dun to keep the sheep indoors, was to buy electric fencing and to cordon off two acres. This was a quick and easy fix using a car battery with a solar panel recharger.

Click Click, Click Click ...

You can tell it’s working, as it makes a ‘click click’ noise. Checking it felt like being an extra in ‘The Longest Day’ dropped at St Mere Eglise, and waiting for a corresponding ‘click click’ in return. Meanwhile fervently hoping it wasn’t a sausage muncher on the other side of the hedge …

Left Switzerland, Right Germany ...


The fence proved remarkably effective in keeping the eighteen, seventeen, sheep in check. You can see above how good it was, we made sure that no motorbikes were left anywhere near the sheep for fear of them having a Steve Mcqueen moment, as the week’s gone on they were certainly getting bolder. I was half expecting one of them to start dressing in womens clothes and feigning mental health issues to try and get the red cross to spring her. And here’s a picture of ‘Miss October’ specially for ‘the welshman’ just in case he’s feeling homesick.

No.69.
'Miss October'

Theres also been a good bit of wildlife to see whilst seeing to the sheep so to speak. There’s a large hare, which I’ve tried to get a snap of unsucessfully so far. I keep waiting by the entrance to the field with the camera, hoping to capture one of the oldest cinematic jokes going.

There is already some windfall in the orchard, and there looks to be a huge crop of fruit this year of apples, pears and plums. The idea is an organic process, the orchard grass is kept ‘managed’ by the sheep, at least on their side of the fence it is, the electrifying message having appeared to have made its mark. At the end of the summer we will pick the fruit and the sheep will be sent away to return with little chefs hats on the end of their rib cage. Some of the fruit will be stored for normal use, and some may be used to make a batch of Organic cider to see if the process and quantities are viable for a micro brewery. The fruit trees are polonised by a herd of bees, these are kept in three hives at the farthest end of the orchard, so in the spring and through the summer the place is a hive of activity. One or two of the sheep with a bit of ‘character’, (n.b. see your local paper Q.V. ‘local character’), have already started munching on the windfall apples that aren’t even fermenting yet. I’m really looking forward to seeing what happens when they all start wandering round with huge quantities of ‘Arkansas Black’ inside them …

Fruit stuff ...

So its the end of the week and NM has given the keys to the orchard back, and seventeen sheep. There is another orchard (pears), a field or so away from where NM’s sheep week has taken place. Its unused and may be available for rent, NM’s wondering what Perry tastes like.

No.

The drink.

White Christmas

Posted in canon, canon g10, life, macro, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , on December 25, 2009 by norvenmunky

Happy Christmas

Snow Bird

Posted in birds, canon, canon g10, life, photography with tags , , , , , , , , on December 8, 2009 by norvenmunky

With the snow falling on the blog, thought I’d give this a try …