Ravings From The Bog

Good Weekend

ef75-300_is_usmI have had a pretty good weekend. I treated myself to this little beauty on the way home from work on Friday. The weather being what it is at the moment, I haven’t had the chance to use it at all, but I’m hoping to get some practice shots tomorrow as I am off work. It’s a Canon 75-300mm IS USM lens. I have a Canon 350D DSLR that I haven’t been using much lately as I’ve been bored with the 18-55mm standard lens that comes with the body and I’ve been using the Fuji Finepix A5800 much more (see the Flickr link to the left of this post). I’ve always thought that Jessops were pretty expensive but having priced this lens in various photography mags and on Amazon, I got it cheaper at Jessops.

What else happened over the weekend? On Saturday, apart from the usual workday, three things.

I got a telephone call from a friend telling me she’s expecting a baby next March. I am delighted for her and really pleased that she took the time to let me know.

I also ran into my aunt and uncle in work and I haven’t seen them in a few years. It’s mainly weddings and funerals in my family but I’m always delighted to see family I haven’t seen in some time. My uncle has been made redundant after thirty years with Easons – I didn’t know this when I started talking to them – which is really sad. It would appear that Easons made some unfortunate investment decisions and as a result have moved from a very strong position in the Irish and Northern Irish markets to being perilously close to the abyss. They saw my picture in a mail-shot brochure advertising the recent changes in my store and decided to try it as a result. They’re in a strong position so there are no worries from that angle but I can imagine how I’d feel in a similar situation.

A few hours later, I’m heading towards the staff restaurant and I recognise a face I haven’t seen in at least twenty five years. He recognised me too – we both had a “double take”. He is the older brother of a girlfriend I “courted” from 1981-1983. We spent twenty minutes talking about old times and catching up on family news. His GRANDCHILDREN were running about while we were talking. Last time I saw him he was twenty two! He introduced me to his wife and I gave him my mob number. Really nice to see him!

Today, the news is good also…

My daughter’s boyfriend has returned home to Sussex after two weeks staying in our house. I finally get my house back.

I made a decision today to sell my Land Rover. More to follow on that one.

I went to see Inglourious Basterds – lots of hype about this movie, most of it true. Enjoyable, but as I’m not really into fantasy cinema, I cannot enthuse about it too much. As I described it on Twitter earlier this evening, it’s like a story from Commandos magazine that’s been written by someone on crack!

Lastly, my friend @Braziel re-blogged on his tumblr page this evening a post by Merlin Mann. It inspired me to get the laptop out and write something, anything, as I’ve been neglecting this blog for some time. The link is at the bottom of this post. It’s worth a read. I love Mann’s directness and the passion in his writing. I’d love to write something with such emotion some day, but for the moment, you’ll just have to put up with this!

Braziel\’s Tumblr


When Transformers Attack!

Transformer!I was driving through the centre of Belfast yesterday after a great Flickr Meetup walk along the Lagan as far as Stranmillis, when I came round the corner from Victoria Street and drove straight into a Hollywood film set – Transformers! Or so I thought… It took me over ten minutes to find somewhere to park the car (legally). Thankfully, the “transformer” hadn’t stomped off in the direction of Cave Hill. Only one or two other people I’ve shown the photograph to actually “get it”. Am I watching too many movies?

New Star Trek Movie Looks Great
February 4, 2009, 10:19 pm
Filed under: Cinema, Culture, Entertainment, Movies, Thoughts | Tags: , , , , ,

New Star Trek MovieOther than watching the original series from the 1960s, I’ve never had much interest in Star Trek. I know there are many Trekkie types out there, but it has never appealed to me that much. That’s why I am surprised that I’m really looking forward to the release of the new prequel coming this year. One of the great features of my iMac is the automatic downloading of film trailers up to 18 months ahead of their showing in the UK and the Star Trek trailer really looks good. One for my list!

Sherrybaby – Another Great Gyllenhaal Movie!
December 30, 2008, 12:17 am
Filed under: Art, Cinema, Entertainment, Movies, Thoughts | Tags: , , , , ,

Maggie Does It Again!Just finished watching Maggie Gyllenhaal in Sherrybaby – everything a good independent film should be, and more! Best film I’ve seen in 2008 by far. Recommended!

Marilyn Monroe – Google & Life Magazine
November 20, 2008, 10:03 pm
Filed under: Art, Cinema, Culture, Entertainment, Life, Movies, Nostalgia, Thoughts | Tags: , , , , , ,

Marilyn Monroe - YUMMY!Google are hosting LIFE magazine’s photographic archive on their servers. Among many other great photographs are 200 of Marilyn Monroe at various stages of her career. If I’m honest, I could look at her photos all day long. Not sure exactly what it is, but her mysterious allure is incredible – gorgeous!

Link: Google’s archive of images

Kristin Scott Thomas – Isn’t She Gorgeous?
November 3, 2008, 8:48 pm
Filed under: Cinema, Entertainment, I Want One!, Life, Movies, Thoughts | Tags: , , , ,

Isn’t she just stunning? I could spend a long time gazing into her lovely eyes. I just thought I’d share this picture I found recently!

Denzel Washington Strikes Again – RECOMMENDED!
October 21, 2008, 10:53 pm
Filed under: Cinema, Entertainment, Movies, Thoughts | Tags: , ,

I’ve just finished watching Deja Vu with Denzel Washington in a much slicker, enjoyable movie than I expected it to be. Very clever CGI, dialogue and pace all wrapped up in tight direction from Tony Scott. Recommended by yours truly for a good night in with pizza and a few beers!