Monthly Archives: June 2006

My Wikipedia Contrail

Ach! A meme! Run for yor lives! Following the lead of such luminaries as Mr Webb and Mr Coates, here is what appears when I type into my browser (at work, it will be different at home). They’ve called it their ‘contrail‘ and so shall I. All links to descriptions of ‘Methods of Torture’ and ‘Races in the Star Wars Universe’ have been removed, in case they skew the results.

  • 1-K_pot – cryogenics device to bring things down to 1 Kelvin. I was researching adiabatic cooling, and came across this.
  • Adiabatic_process – Cooling method using fine water mist, something I’m involved with on the Tube at the moment.
  • Admiral_Ackbar – “It’s a trap!”
  • Air_(band) – I needed a link for this post.
  • Amdram – I added this entry to point to Community Theatre. It is my hobby, after all.
  • Asterix – I was curious about different foreign spellings of the character names, and couldn’t remember the names of the writers.
  • Churros – These were on sale at the Cuban festival on the South Bank a couple of weeks ago.
  • Bad_Taste – Can’t remember why I was looking at this.
  • Bernard_Gui – While playing Arturo Ui recently, I kept being reminded of the line, “The devil I renounce is you, Bernardo Gui!” from The Name Of The Rose.
  • Ecumenopolis – Some trail about future cities led me to this.
  • Boris_Karloff – Watched Ed Wood the other day, and wanted to read more about Lugosi’s rival.
  • Evaporative_cooling – Work related reasearch for the Tube again.
  • Exploding_sheep – Not entirely sure what led me to read about this meme, but it seems to crop up again and again.
  • Goth – Just to refresh my knowledge, really.
  • HA!_HA!_guy – I wanted to find the poster generator for this, and I succeeded.
  • James_Horner – It’s surprising what he’s done actually. I love the soundtrack to Battle Beyond The Stars.
  • Jeff_Minter – It’s surprising what he’s done as well. My favourite was Metagalactic Llamas Battle at the Edge of Time for the VIC20.
  • Kardashev_scale – Ah yes, more futurology research. This is what happens when you read books by Charles Stross.
  • Marburg_(virus) – “Lovely stuff!”
  • Polo_(mint) – I was hungry.
  • Paradigm_shift – Again with the future stuff. I was trying to find ways to explain The Singularity to Mairi.
  • Seed_AI – See above.
  • Technological_singularity – See above.

And that’s yer lot. This contrail was built up over the course of the last 4 months, in early 2006. Anyone else?

Just A Couple More Boxes In The Car

Went up to Bedford at the weekend, to visit my brother, and go through the final piles of boxes from my Dad’s house. It was mostly a case of throwing stuff out, but I did come away with the following…

  • a bag of Hornby train carriages and track (to be donated to the Robin Deacon Fund for Performance Art)
  • a box of choir scores, mainly from the late 1940’s and early 1950’s, which will be given to My Beloved Director, who is a professional singer and music teacher. Failing that, the bookshop at Merton Abbey Mills may be interested.
  • several photos of me at various stages of early life – you can see the change from blonde blue-eyed cherub to – well there’s no change really. I may post some up here.
  • a couple of Parkwood Middle School yearbook-type-things. These aren’t yearbooks in the American sense, full of photos of pupils, and “Person most likely to be playing a Brechtian Hitler-analogue in 25 years time” written under one of them. No, these are collections of short stories and poems, written and illustrated by the pupils. There may be some early Petty gems, as if there was ever such a thing.
  • some coffee cups and saucers, because my kitchen cupboard isn’t quite full yet.

My sister was there too, with my niece, who is suddenly wearing black nail varnish and eyeliner. Yikes. I’ll lend her my collection of Sisters of Mercy records, and that NIN remix ep. And some Rammstein. That’ll show her.

Test Of AutoBlock Plugin

This is a test of the autoblock blosxom plugin. It automatically puts HTML block tags around paragraphs. So this paragraph is made into a P. It currently only works for P, BLOCKQUOTE and PRE.

This will be a BLOCKQUOTE (because of the space at the beginning)

This is PRE code, because of the two colons at the start (removed by the plugin)

I will still need to put links in manually, but it’s nice anyway.

I’ve edited the code so that it ignores the meta-creation_date tag at the top, but I can’t figure out how to do the same for the tags bit below. The plugin is written in Perl, and there’s a line of code that dictates which lines to ignore, which is basically any line which starts with an HTML tag. That way, existing tags don’t get overwritten. It is done using a regular expression, with the HTML tags included in an OR list of things to ignore. I added ‘meta’ with no trouble, but when I added ‘[tags:’ it didn’t like it – probably because of the square bracket. Some further learning is required.

Perl Regular Expressions!

[tags: plugin blosxom]

Arturo Pluggy

Katy, who played someone who got killed 4 times a night, whilst with child, for the masses of Merton, saw this in her work bathroom. Ring any bells?
When inanimate objects look like cast members

When inanimate objects look like cast members.

Electric Haywain

From the archives, here’s another book with the wrong style of cover.


The Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test by Tom Wolfe, alternative cover

A Dream Of Making An Album

…just not in the way you think. I had a really vivid dream the other night, and when I woke up it was still so clear in my head that I scribbled down the gist of it before I forgot. This post is the result of those notes.

As the story starts, I was working on the Record Section at Woolworths, where I worked on and off while at school and college. We had some banners up to advertise a competition where the winner would have the chance to record an album in a top studio with some top engineers. Somehow, I won.

The engineers arrived, with some recording gear. They gave me a microphone, and I proceeded to make a series of strange and silly noises into it, because I realised I can’t sing or do anything musical. I felt embarassed, but the engineers seemed happy, and just took the recordings away.

I forgot all about it until the following week, when suddenly, the Record section at Woolworths is selling this album with my face on it. It had a really cheesy cover, along the lines of, “Matthew Petty sings the Greats”. I immediately grabbed a shrink-wrapped copy off the stands and played it on the shop’s knackered player. To my astonishment, the engineers had transformed my gurgles, yips and bleats into surprisingly cool ambient lounge music, reminiscent of Air, or the mellower end of Meat Beat Manifesto.

I woke from the dream before I knew whether it was a success or not.


Mr Homer’s Odyssey

Finally got round to doing another of these – books with the wrong style of cover.


The Odyssey by Homer, alternative cover

Alternative Bookcovers

I’m all confused about where these have been posted, so here they all are from Flickr.

What happens when a book cover design doesn’t match the style of the contents? This does.

Mein Girly Kampf Mein Kampf in Chicklit style
The Very Hungry Caterpillar Thriller Kids book in Thriller style
Mixed-up bookcovers Necronomicon in Dictionary style
Mixed-up bookcovers American Psycho in Teen Romance Style

UPDATE: Boing Boing posted this link to a gallery of alternative book covers.

UPDATE 2: February 2009 – There are several galleries of films and videogames, designed as if they were books in a cool retro style.

Shuggie in Action

Just to show you what he can be like, here are some pics of Shug in better health.

Shuggie in Action

Shuggie wondering where the duck went

Shuggie in Action

Shuggie relaxing

Shuggie in Action

Shuggie & Mairi

Shuggie in Action

Shuggie asleep on my bed

1970s Family Slides Part I

Amongst all my Dads stuff were many many slides, dating back to the 1960s. We picked out a select 100, and Robin is in the process of scanning them for me. Here’s what we have so far…

Old slides scanned

Me playing with my sister Jacquie

Old slides scanned

My sister Jacquie with me, and Simon in front.

Old slides scanned

My Mum leaning on the Wolsey, holding my Dad’s ice cream while Jacquie, me and Simon eat ours.


My Dad


Grandad Petty, Grandad Lloyd, Simon, Jacquie, Nana Lloyd and my Mum at the top.