Posted in Curiosities at 12:00 pm on 12 November 2013
On Saturday (9/11/13) I was once again at an antiques fair at the Royal Highland Centre, Ingliston, Edinburgh.
One of the items for sale was this impressive object:-
A life size model of American Civil War Confederate General Stonewall Jackson. Yours for £600!
Also for sale was this extremely ancient piece of technology:-
What? Computers are antiques now?
Also some Soviet iconography:-
Two models of the USSR memorial to space exploration, a huge badge in the shape of a Soviet tank plus a tower of some sort.
Posted in Curiosities at 12:00 pm on 9 October 2013
I just remembered today that I hadn’t posted this photo of a weird looking art gallery in the shape of a ship, with statue of a dolphin outside, that I took in Kelso during the summer.
Posted in Curiosities, Linguistic Annoyances at 12:00 pm on 22 August 2013
I was in St Andrews last week and spotted this notice in a cafe’s window.
Sit in coffee?
I’d rather not.
Posted in Curiosities at 12:00 pm on 6 August 2013
English is an idiosyncratic language, especially when written down. Think, for instance, of the different ways the letter combination “ough” can be pronounced (eg in cough, enough, through, thorough, bough and brought.)
It is apparently, however, only the 33rd weirdest language in the world, though.
The weirdest, Chalcatongo Mixtec, is spoken by about 6,000 people in Oaxaca, Mexico, but strangely (you might naively think) German, Dutch, Norwegian, Spanish and Mandarin are pretty weird.
One of the weirdnesses of Chalcatongo Mixtec is that it doesn’t do anything at all to signal a question; no inversion of word order, no change in inflection, no pre/suffixing.
The least weird language is Hindi, but surprisingly both Hungarian and Basque, which are generally considered to bear little relation to other languages, are in the bottom ten for weirdness, as is Cantonese.
See the link above for the top and bottom tens and the arguments for the ratings.
Posted in Architecture, Curiosities, Trips at 5:26 pm on 18 July 2013
I noticed in the Lake District – Grasmere and Ambleside in particular – on our trip down there in April that not just boundary walls between fields are built with the dry stone method, the houses are too.
The photo shows a few such houses in Ambleside.
Posted in Curiosities, Kirkcaldy at 8:24 pm on 3 July 2013
This appeared in Kirkcaldy’s Beveridge Park a year or so ago.
It is a fairly secluded space deep in the Park, well away from the pond and the playing fields.
The symbols and wording on the sign – which is some way away from the seating area and obelisk – relate to different religions.
An inscription appears on all four sides of the obelisk. I assume the meaning is the same in the four different languages.
Posted in Curiosities, Kirkcaldy at 12:00 pm on 26 June 2013
Last week in the Beveridge Park, Kirkcaldy, I noticed this growth on one of the trees. It’s huge.
From the other side of the tree you can see there are two growths.
This is a close up of the first fungus from underneath.
Posted in Curiosities, Modern Life Is Rubbish at 5:53 pm on 7 June 2013
You may have noticed a lack of postings here recently.
The blog has been playing silly beggars again; something to do with hosting. There are plans afoot to move it to another host.
Posted in Curiosities, Kirkcaldy at 8:00 pm on 19 May 2013
It’s not just Irish and US shelves at my local supermarket. Thay have only added to what has for a while been the obligatory Polish aisle, part of which is shown below, with a close up.
Posted in Curiosities, Kirkcaldy, Modern Life Is Rubbish at 12:00 pm on 6 May 2013
Beside the Irish shelves in my local supermarket there are no less than two others of produce surely intended to be sold in the US.
A few of these things I’ve read about, Hershey bars (chocolate,) Jello (jelly.* – At £1.50 a packet no less. One of the packets was chocolate flavoured; how do you get chocolate flavoured jelly? The picture on the packet showed the stuff was opaque. Weird.) Lifesavers(??) Hominy grits. The rest is more or less a mystery apart from what were obviously cereals.
I suppose this has turned up here because the supermarket concerned has just abandoned its attempts to make inroads into the US market.
Here are two close-ups. Click either side to enlarge.
What on Earth is this stuff?
(*What Usians call jelly we call jam, I think. See my post on Jelly Jungle.)