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Seal of the President of the United States   Leave a comment

“Then you ask why I don’t live here

Honey, how come you have to ask me that?”

quoth the Bobhead, an actual Nobel Prize winner

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Posted June 22, 2018 by Drunken Bunny in Made Me Laugh

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Mabel’s Tavern, King’s Cross, London   Leave a comment

 

Pub #2136:

After a plate of hors d’oeuves at the lunch break of the mini-conference at the Crick Institute, the need to rinse the pasty nibbles from between one’s teeth was irresistible and a pub was sought out.  On the trip to the Rocket — the most obvious choice — Mabel’s appeared one street out-of-the-way and looked a bit quieter.  It was.  Mind, it was full of suits but my collared shirt served as enough camouflage to blend in.

It is relatively small and dark and, dare I say, classy and the lunch crowd all seemed there for lunch.  Perhaps as recently as a year ago the lunch crowd would ingest mostly fluids but the world has gone mad; so much so that Kim Jong-Un commented on it to Donald Trump earlier in the day (and, I hope this, on its own merit, never ceases to sound insane, either).

 

Posted June 13, 2018 by Drunken Bunny in Pubs

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Deuce Bag IPA   Leave a comment

Looks like the summer drinks are here, this one for the DeuceBag in everyone’s life:

Posted June 6, 2018 by Drunken Bunny in Beer, Made Me Laugh

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Hillingdon or Hilling-Doom?   Leave a comment

 

Walking to the bus from the Co-Op with some still warm bread, I found myself before the Centre of Hope (which, after all the head injuries I have had in nearly 6 decades, is hardly surprising).

The overarching Hope would be to be told to turn right as you exit, for that way lies someone in Glamorise that might do something with your post-brain-surgery mop of hair.  To be sent left (your right, as you face the shops), is to be directed to Adell’s Chemist/Clinic next door or, worse, what lies two doors down.

We’re all eventually going two doors to the left, but I think we’d all prefer to look pretty for a while longer.

 

Posted June 6, 2018 by Drunken Bunny in Made Me Laugh, Obits

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Loco’s, Brunel University Student Union, Uxbridge, Middlesex and the Visa Debacle of 1st June 2018   Leave a comment

 

Pub #2135:

Glossing over my reasons for being on campus, the mere fact that Brunel University HAS a campus (even an extremely small and modern one) made me long for something besides Oxford or Cambridge.  It lives up to the “Plate Glass University” category but that plate glass looks out on green neighbourhoods surrounding it.  It got its start as a Technical College and eventually got a Royal Charter as a University in 1966 (so, I’m about the same age as the Brunel College of Advanced Technology that preceded this version).  Finished with my visit, I decided to walk home and sought out pre-stroll fortification in the Student Union.

The bar there is called Loco’s and they were packed with right-around-19-to-21-year-olds, enjoying Friday evening with £1.50 pints.  It is a bit loud and very young, but the cricket was on a projector screen and some Ought-ies music videos playing on the tele: stuff their parents listened to while conceiving these engineers (and whatever else is taught here).  The bar food looks like what you might imagine: tempting with the cheap beer, but not to make a meal out of.

Cool, I guess.  Nerd University cool, not party school cool but I’ve got degrees from both types.  While in school, it seemed like any bar would do and it was only years later I even began to notice how they reflect a targeted demographic within their host institutions.  Guess I’m just slow.

Added Saturday morning regarding the Visa payments crash: So, I got to the bar and was told the transaction had to be “cash only.”  Fine, I had two rounds in coins at £1.50 a pop and really only planned to stay for one.  I asked if the interwebs were down but the bargirl said it was just the card reader.  I didn’t think about it again and headed home after my short stay in the nursery.

On the way, I stopped at Waitrose in Ruislip and got some fixings for a fish pie and picked up a nice bottle of wine and, as they were on sale, a bottle each of bourbon and better-quality-than-normal gin.  Everything rang up at about 50 quid and I put in my card to pay only for it to be rejected.  “Is that Visa?” asked the cashier.  I said yes and a floor walker appeared and took me, the unpaid receipt, and my packed shopping to the front desk where the chaos I now noticed at the tills was distilled into a concentrated form.

“Do you have another card type?” one of the beleaguered staff asked while waving a card reader at me. I told them “no” and asked if the cash machine was affected.
“It works, but this has been going on all afternoon and it is out of cash.” She then looked at the packed bag, me, the receipt, and me again then whispered, “oh, just go with your groceries.”
“Are you sure?”
“Just be quiet about it,” and she handed me the receipt. I wish I had bought more stuff, now.

 

 

Posted June 1, 2018 by Drunken Bunny in Pubs

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The Mudlark, Borough, London   Leave a comment

 

Pub #2134:

The tide rolled in and the Thames Foreshore sank.  I left my mudlarking idyll for the Jubilee Line at London Bridge and was almost there when a pub called The Mudlark emerged.  Acknowledging serendipity, I stopped for a birthday beer — okay, I already had that at the Market Porter before the mudlarking, but this is “one to grow on.”  And, the beer has a bunny on a Space Hopper on the label … signs and symbolism are everywhere, today.

I was finished by 15 minutes past noon, and left as the first table of tourists showed up.  Lovely.

 

 

Posted May 30, 2018 by Drunken Bunny in Pubs

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Birthday Mudlarking   1 comment

 

I spent my tenth birthday (the tenth, that is, since moving to the UK), slogging back-and-forth through the silt and grime of the Thames Foreshore from London Bridge upstream to just past the London Eye, risking Weil’s Disease to search for largely worthless artifacts.  I have a Standard Thames Foreshore Permit that’s good for another year-and-a-half and quite underused in the last year-and-a-half.  Standard allows access and scraping to about 3 inches deep — essentially, beach-combing on one of the filthier urban waterways available and this seemed like a fine way to start another (yet another) year.

 

 

After a quick sustenance stop at the Market Porter, I headed down the stairs in front of the Globe Theatre about an hour ahead of the low tide.  I picked up some old, handmade nails; clay pipe remnants; shards of China and other crockery; and, a weirdly shaped bottle.  I left most of the bulky crap like bricks, but may read up on them a bit before a follow-up visit.  This one, from Cliff & Sons, Wortley, Leeds is probably late 19th century:

 

 

And, this one is from the Farnley Iron Works, also in Leeds, from the mid-19th century:

 

 

I’m sure someone out there can put a date on LBC bricks like this one but the company still produces so I’ll say sometime in the last 150 years:

 

 

A wheel theme emerged:

 

 

These appear to be mooring spots:

 

 

And, this one a mourning spot:

 

 

And, they led me to the London Eye.  No collecting can be done in this immediate area (nor, indeed, within 30 meters of a bridge), but it was fun to walk under it.  The tide and the past 2 days’ rainfall obliterated the non-wading portion of the Foreshore just beyond this and I returned the way I came, going past my stairs as far as the Golden Hinde before finally escaping the encroaching waters.

 

 

The rain sewers, probably carrying the Weil’s Disease encrusted rat feces:

 

 

Always a good sign to see one’s spirit animal:

 

 

These phone app bikes are always just left in the middle of the pavement.  At least this user was creative with it.

 

 

Stopped to take some graffiti photos and only then noticed the spectacular cap to the bridge abutment:

 

 

So, no treasure or real antiquities this go around but the South bank is known to be more sparsely decorated.  Nonetheless, there are some pretty things to put in the plant boxes this summer.

 

 

The bottle is my main mystery of the collection, though.  You might be able to see the rectangular (not cylindrical) throat at the broken neck.  It is labeled “GS Sheffield Hertford” which likely has something to do with G. S. Sheffield who was Master of Hertford Lodge #403 (Freemasons) in 1929.  I’ll update this if anything turns up.

 

 

I’ll call this one a mild success.  Past birthdays in this series of blog posts:

Looking for Cock (2009)
The London Underround (2010)
A Race before Hashing (2011)
Maastricht and Pinkpop (2012)
A Long Run West of Trowbridge (2013)
Westbury to Warminster Run (2014)
Running Sick and on Chemo (2015)
London Outer Orbital Path Finale (2017)

Somehow, it seems, I managed to do nothing notable for the 2016 birthday (drink and drugs may have been involved).

 

 

Posted May 30, 2018 by Drunken Bunny in Tourism

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