Archive for March, 2004

Spring arrives!

Spring arrives:Today I sighted the first female cyclist of the year. You always know spring is really here when they suddenly appear.

Game Studies

Game Studies: Once upon a time, “game studies” meant glowing oil-paintings depicting dead pheasants & hares. Now… stand by your beds, because a new Game Studies is on its way; academics write about computer games. Let’s hope it doesn’t make the same painful mistakes that media studies, film studies and critical theory did. It’s probably […]

Leaving London

Leaving London:A comment in the January 2004 New Homes Demand Index claims… “Large numbers of new homebuyers in London and the south-east continue to move to other regions, specifically the south-west and north.” I did my own ad hoc but in-depth survey of reports on price forecasts yesterday. The most informed studies looked at a […]

Dancing with Wolvo

Dancing with Wolvo:A humble Wolverhampton blogger has attracted strong interest from Hollywood and the producers of Notting Hill. (Times, free registration required). Blogs as the latest engines of cultural tourism; you couldn’t make it up. Let’s just hope the moghuls don’t set any resulting film in London.

Three crows, one hops it (new photo)

Three crows, one hops it: (large version, 70kb)

New photos in Gallery

Six new terraces:Six new terrace photos added to the Gallery today.

Knock on wood (new photo series)

Knock on wood:I’ve added a Gallery page, collecting the best of the series documenting the doors of Stoke’s terrace homes. The series is ongoing, so I’ll be adding more images over the next few weeks.

Mud house (‘clom’ house in Wales)

Mud house:A house made of mud. In wet Wales. Yes, it’s true; and with the help of several tons of Stoke-on-Trent clay, a traditional ‘clom’ house is being restored by Greg Stevenson. Some people are even building the first new clom houses in 150 years.

More doors (four more terrace door photos)

More doors:More examples of the English vernacular in terraced homes; these from north Burslem today. As you might have guessed, a selection of doors will be my next Gallery series. (large version, 100kb) (large version, 93kb) (large version, 78kb) (large version, 92kb)

Crosswords are prisons for poems

Popped, brain, four across:‘Crosswords are prisons for poems’. That line popped into my head as I was thinking of being on the train on Tuesday, going down to BIAD to pick up a pile of dissertations for marking. Two women behind me were doing a crossword.

Just wild (wild boar re-established)

Just wild:According to today’s Telegraph, it’s official. The wild boar is back in English woods, well established in the Midlands and their population is set to boom. We can thank the great storm of 1987, which set some breeding pairs free. They’re as big as a labrador dog, with five-inch tusks. So be careful when […]

Ace terraces (photos of the English vernacular)

Ace terraces: More examples of the English vernacular to be found in the frontage of terraced homes. All these were photographed today in & around Burslem, Stoke-on-Trent. (large version, 93kb) (large version, 103kb) (large version, 93kb) (large version, 98kb) (large version, 63kb) (large version, 90kb) (large version, 72kb) (large version, 100kb) (large version, 88kb) “When […]

Zembla (new literary mag)

Zembla:A new literary magazine, Zembla; Tilda Swinton graces the cover of the first issue, and inside is an article by Brian Eno. Sounds promising. Although they do have ugly bouncers on the door; no Flash & broadband, no entry.

Thatcher + net = Sunshine (new gen. of teens)

Thatcher + net = Sunshine: Viewpoint #14, the trend-spotting bible, devotes a whole issue to what it calls the ‘Sunshine Generation’. “Why the big fuss about the latest generation of teens? Because in many ways, they are completely different from all that went before. Sunshine teens are not at odds with the world.” The shift […]


Blossom:“One of the joys our technological civilisation has lost is the excitement with which seasonal flowers and fruits were welcomed; the first daffodil, strawberry or cherry are now things of the past, along with their precious moment of arrival.” – Derek Jarman.


Brumdon:An interesting quote from housing expert Anne Power; “this year (2004), Birmingham will be reached by train as quickly from central London as the outer Thames Gateway.” And even Stoke will be within the London commuter-belt by Spring 2005, at 83 minutes.

The Rise of the Creative Class – in paperback

Cheap ticket to Florida: The Rise of the Creative Class has just been published in paperback. Since it was published, some economists have started picking at some elements of Florida’s case; such as Joel Kotkin, Terry Nichols Clark and Steven Malanga. I see this as a good thing; because if Florida can successfully refute such […]

Mog-alog (catalogue for moggie adopters)

Mog-alogIt’s often the simplest ideas that are the best.

Right young things (young fogeyism)

Right young things:It’s a survey of slightly dubious methodology – but it seems that Young Fogey-ism has crossed over, from the high-brow fashionistas to the youth mainstream. It confirms the findings of several surveys – the 2002 Corporate Edge survey of 1000 young people’s attitude to Britishness, and the authorititive British Social Attitudes survey of […]

Bitpass Directory gets a makeover

A bit of a makeover:BitPass have given their Seller Directory a makeover.