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Welcome to the world of the Vincent D'Onofrio obsessed - and a bit of real life thrown in.

Saturday, April 14, 2012

Purgatory - Day 6

Here it comes. Say "No" darling!

Friday, April 13, 2012

Flogged It!

Today was the day my neighbour/friend and I went to Flog It at the zoo.

Her husband took us there in his van, as the painting wouldn't fit in their car. On the way we passed this amazing building in Camden that I have never seen before, and had no idea what it was.

Obviously it's Art Deco, and the name Carreras was carved in the stone over the entrance. Apparently it was a cigarette factory! It's now known as Greater London House.

At the zoo we were in a rather nice suite above the restaurant. We were glad not to be queueing outside, as it was threatening to rain - and Janet had a fall last night, which left her with a very painful leg. Half the room was full of chairs, in the other half were the valuation tables and cameras.

Everyone was very friendly, and much chatting went on. It was a bit sad to see some of the stuff that people hoped might be of value, such as limited edition "collectors' dolls". They've seen porcelain dolls on other shows and think they must all be valuable, even though they are neither old nor rare, let alone quality!

For the first time ever, they asked audience members to write limericks. No one seemed to know why. Given that we had entered the zoo by Prince Albert Gate and were in the Prince Albert Suite, I based mine on the Stanley Holloway monologue, The Lion and Albert, in which the lion at Blackpool zoo eats a little boy:

I called my offering The Lion and Prince Albert:

At the zoo in the middle of London,
There are tigers and camels and lions.
Folks for Flog It did wait
At the Prince Albert Gate
And Paul Martin was fed to the lions.

When I went downstairs to the loo, I saw Paul Martin on his way out of the Gents, we smiled and said Hello, and I just dropped the comment that in my limerick he was eaten by a lion. Not sure they'd even told him about that part of the proceedings yet, so he might have thought I was mad! I was told later that he'd read it, though, and enjoyed it.

Everyone shuffled along a few seats at a time, until we were next in line for a valuation. During the last wait, Paul Martin came over and chatted, signing pictures of himself (no I didn't get one, but Janet did) and he noticed my bright orange trousers. He said he'd bought some just like them the other day, and yesterday was filming in them with blue trainers and top. He is a bit of a dandy:

This one's for you, Eliza:

I'd taken a few things along just to be able take part. I had no intention of selling anything. But it turned out that the chain (or Albert, as they are known) of my grandfather's watch wasn't a tarnished piece of tat - it's 9 carat rose gold and worth £300-400. The little fob at the end could be worth £100-150 more all by itself. I felt equivocal about selling, but in the end they chose not to take it. I might now sell it (but keep the watch) at a local auction room, knowing what it's worth. My rings were not very valuable, so I don't need to up the insurance.

My friend's painting, however, got a lot of attention. The off-camera valuer went off to do a bit of research on the back of my own findings, and came back with the information that the painter sells for anything betwen £400 and £4,000. He thought Janet's picture was probably worth £500-700. We were ushered to the far end of the room, behind the valuation tables, to wait with light refreshments for Janet's turn to be filmed.

She wanted me with her for moral support, as she is very nervous and shy. She hadn't even had her picture taken since her wedding 40 years ago! But the painting was so big, there wasn't room for me alongside her, with valuer Catherine Southon on the other side, so I joined the "crowd" behind her (the others were all officials and helpers for the show) and didn't get to use my radio microphone.

The big surprise was that Catherine valued the painting at £800-1200! Janet was stunned.

Can't wait to see what happens at the auction on May 8th (I won't be there, sadly) and I really hope the painting sells, and at the top end of the estimate. It's too big and heavy to take back home, and she doesn't even like it. She also has 16 very destructive grandchildren!

This is the kind of painting the artist Jacques Deperthes does (he was born in 1936 and is still active) but this is not Janet's picture:

We arrived at the zoo at 10.20am and didn't leave till gone 5pm, with no lunch and just a drop of tea or water. Now I'm busily devouring everything in sight before collapsing into my bed at the end of a great day.

Purgatory - Day 5

You're looking too happy, Bobby, it'll all end in tears.

Thursday, April 12, 2012

Going Flogging

Not S&M, fortunately (not a fan) but the making of a BBC programme called Flog It!

People take their unwanted treasures, where they are valued, and a few selected items taken away to auction.

I found out that they were going to be at London Zoo when a neighbour showed me a painting she wants to sell to raise money for her daughter's new flat. I looked up the artist and the programme venues for her.

Tomorrow we are going along, and I hope they will choose her picture, so that we don't have to lug it all the way home again!

I'm taking along a couple of rings and my grandfather's fob watch, but don't intend to sell them, even though the rings don't even fit my little finger these days. I would like to know how much one ring is worth, though, for insurance purposes, as the last time it was valued, 20-30 years ago, they valued it at £125.

Quick, while stocks last!

UK Vixens take note!

I went to a big M&S store today, where a large selection of t-shirts, sleeveless, short-sleeved and long-sleeved, is on special offer at 2 for £10. As some are actually £9.50 each, that means you get the second for just 50p!

Stock up for summer and save!

Purgatory - Day 4

Slam me up against the wall any time, baby.

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Purgatory - Day 3

I bet I can introduce you to a bang that doesn't make you flinch...

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Bloody Spam

Thanks to those who pointed out the spam comments that had appeared in some of my posts. I've deleted them - and accidentally along the way one of Vikeau's, too, sorry!

What with the emails offering me increases in penis size, viagra, online casino games, local roofers (they always assume they are writing to men in the US!) I'm getting pretty sick of the lack of ways to deal with these cretins. As if any sane person would click on their attachments.

Purgatory - Day 2

You'd be better off with me that this weasel.

What time? Whose time?

During a film of one of his descents to the Titanic, which was shown on TV last night, he steered his submersible into the suite of the Strauses, where this clock remains on the mantlepiece.

Though the face was covered in crud (technical term) he thought he could detect that it had stopped at 2.20 - the time the ship sank. It did appear that the minute hand mind be poised at 20 past, but no hour was discernible.

Looking through various websites, opinion seems to favour the clock's having stopped at 2.04. Perhaps it has since been salbaged and the face cleaned.

But in the middle of the night, I started to wonder whose 2.04 that might be. The ship had 5 time zones to cross. Were clocks on board routinely altered to show the correct time for the zone it was in? How was this co-ordinated? There was no public address system. Did servants or cabin staff take care of it?

At whose 2.04 did the clock stop? At whose 2.20 did it sink? For that matter, at whose 11.45 did it hit the iceberg? When did we start changing to BST for the summer months?

Another matter sprang unbidden into my mind as I lay awake at 5.20 am British Standard Time/4.20 am Greenwich Mean Time, the time(s) at which the BBC World Service hands one of its wavelengths over to BBC Radio 4.

The captain of the Californian had his reputation destroyed by being accused of ignoring distress calls and signals from the stricken liner. But another programme said he was exonerated 20 years after his death, when the wreck was found some miles away from where its distress call said it was.

Well, if it was so far from where it was thought to be, how on earth did the Carpathia find the survivors in the lifeboats, and the wreckage and floating bodies close by, just four hours after the sinking, and apparently sailing straight there?

I'm not a conspiracy theory fan, but this suddenly struck me as odd.

Monday, April 09, 2012

What's In A "The"?

Why is it that in the US folks refer to a famous sunken ship as Titanic, but a well-known supersonic jet as The Concorde, whereas Brits talk about The Titanic and Concorde?

Just wondering...

"The most beuatiful woman in the world"

That's what this woman's husband has said in defence of his wife's assertion that women are jealous of her because she is "too beautiful". Her name is Samantna Brick.

Huh? Her bleached blond hair surrounds a face that is not just asymmetrical, it's just plain wonky, and I believe it's widely considered that symmetry is usually necessary to make people regard a face as attractive. Her teeth are not great either.

This is not just a bad picture, either - just google her and you'll find lots of photos that show that this one is pretty typical.

Is she delusional? Is her self-esteem so low that she has to pump herself up? Is it so high that she has no idea that she is not too beautiful, she is not so beautiful, she is not even quite beautiful? She simply isn't beautiful. She's not even particularly pretty.

I understand that her husband might find her beautiful, but I don't imagine many other people will. Am I mistaken?

And who is she? I don't have a clue. This madness is all I know about her. I have no interest in finding out any more.

Purgatory - Day 1

Drinking alone, sweetheart? Let me join you.

Sunday, April 08, 2012

Aggro To Come

Computer To Go.

I thought that the reason my video captures on my current computer were dark and dismal was because of a problem with PowerDVD. I've been brightening them up before posting them.

But since I got the Season 7 DVD set, another problem has reared its ugly head. The dvds have been slipping and sticking, getting out of synch, and generally behaving badly. I assumed it was the fact that they were Dutch (sorry Netherlands).

But to be sure, today I've capped an episode on my previous machine.

Well, everything is almost teminally slow. But the dvds played fine, and the captures are beautifully vivid. So I guess the problem is the dvd player on the newest computer. I have been wondering why it's sometimes seemed so noisy.

I'm pretty sure I bought an extended guarantee, so I shall have to take the plunge and take it back for a refit. After carefully saving everything to the plug-in spare drive, of course. Mustn't take any chances.

I may also have to recap a whole bunch of episodes and films to get them up to this standard:

When the time comes, I may have trouble accessing your blogs (currently I can't get on the Animal Rescue site, for example) but that won't happen for at least a few days yet.

Untethered - Day 22

Distraught Bobby can't find Donny. I'm here, honey!

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