Friday, December 31, 2010

Restless Times in Sheffield...

Anyone in Sheffield with half an hour to spend could do worse than call in at the millennium gallery and see the Restless Times exhibition. It documents British art between the wars.

It’s worth calling just to see this Percy Wyndham Lewis gem and read about why modernist and first war western front veteran Percy didn’t paint society type Edith Sitwell’s hands in his portrait of her. Ten feet away you can compare and contrast this modernist style with Roger Fry's more romantic portrait of the same woman.

And the buffer girls painting that normally sits in the Graves is there too. 

Turns out the girl on the right was called Maggie Herrick. I always think she looks as hard as nails and definitely someone you wouldn’t have wanted to have to cross.

Anyway the girls got five bob apiece for the half day sitting which was a weeks work to them in 1919.

There's lots of interesting stuff in the exhibition and the museum people have nice facebook page that tells you more. Best thing is that it's all for free.

A seasonal bargain so go snap it up!..

Thursday, December 30, 2010

Nick Clegg

Lovely youtube clip here.

As long as our students are as perceptive and thought out as this young lady is, the future of the country is in good hands. Obvious clear grasp of all the issues, arriving at an insightful and thought through conclusion after taking into account all the factors at play - and all delivered with admirable brevity; Nick Clegg is in fact a liar and a twat...

It’s not just that all those who voted Liberal now find themselves to have voted Tory. It’s not just that he will be party to sacking hundreds of thousands of public servants after  first slashing their compensation and redundancy terms. 

What pushes the twat-o-meter to new levels is the quality of the barefaced and shameless reneging on promises to students after blatantly courting their vote with pledges to reduce and then abolish tuition fees .

It’s not even sleazy.

Our student is absolutely bang on - and it's a good point well made.

Nick Clegg is, quite simply, a lying twat...

Monday, December 27, 2010

I like this bit of graffiti...

It’s near the Hunter’s Bar roundabout in Sheffield where the river Porter enters a culvert and goes subterranean to finish its journey to the town centre.

It’s quite poetic.

But what I really like is the half decent use of the semi colon – not something you normally expect to see in your average wall daub...

Monday, November 8, 2010

Oh get lost!

The current mania people have for using the word 'get' when ordering anything from ice cream to a Mars bar is a bad habit. 

It’s getting to be an epidemic where I live. If it's not down your way now then you had best get ready because it soon will be.

I'm nobody’s idea of a grammar snob by any stretch, but this latest Americanism drives me up the wall.

Free beer for the next bar person who when asked, 'Can I get a pint of beer and a bag of crisps please?'  And responds; 'No, that’s ok, I'll get it for you -it's my job...'

Whither Wetherspoons (no such thing as a quick half)

Why is the service at Wetherspoons so crap?
Anyone have a theory? Is it company policy or something?

I mean the company put so much into delivering a bewildering range of quality wine, beer, cider and coffee at an affordable price. They spend endless amounts refurbishing and rescuing old buildings of architectural merit that really does do us all a service.

They go to the trouble of getting in a wide variety of hot and cold food to sell you at value for money prices-I know it's not gourmet but it fills the hole. They go jukebox free to encourage conversation and to allow you to think and to stop people inflicting their personal musical prejudices on everyone else.
It's almost an everything to everyone business model and it's really hard to beat. In fact there’s a serious prima facie argument in a lot of people's book for leaving home and moving in.
But why do they insist on making so hard for people to give them money? Why does such a clearly a thought out business fail at the final hurdle?

At that point that is the culmination of all the planning, all the training and all the logistics that must be involved in a national listed company delivering a genius business model and multitude of quality products to the masses.....the very point  at which the customer is separated from their hard earned.

The new Wetherspoons on the Ecclesall road in Sunny Downtown Sheffield  is a case in point. All light and air and carpets and comfort. Great wine both red and white, 1.78 for a pint of decent ale, 2.18 for award winning beer that's 3 quid up the road on what is the swankiest street in the city.

But have a go at getting your hands on the goods and you are going to be serially disappointed.

The bog standard  arrangement is for you to stand at a 60 foot bar with 15 others watching two/three bar staff manning the pumps and collecting the food orders. It won't take you too long to clock on to the fact that you are looking in the face of the thick end of a ten minute wait.

While you look around musing whether it’s worth hanging on or going up the road instead, you spectate various parts of the pub. And you’ll see staff wandering around, oblivious the fact that customers have their tongues hanging out in what would be on your average sized bar a three deep queue, finding anything to do but collect cash from the customer.

You'll spot supervisors endorsing the situation by similarly roaming about, earnestly seeking an empty pot to collect or a menu to straighten and not seeing the slightest sign of a problem. Chuck in the legendary and uncanny ability of Wetherspoons staff to serve people out of order (is there anything that pisses drinkers off more?) and the whole thing becomes an  exercise in guts and determination instead of a leisure  experience.

In the end it's not even bad business; it's just brainless.

So say tata to the swift half in ‘Spoons and go elsewhere ; it'll take yer longer to buy than to supp ....

Greggs reveal British public like bacon sandwiches shock horror...

Recent financial results from high street baker and sandwich maker Greggs sensationally reveal that their experimental new line- the bacon sandwich -has been a runaway success. (And I kid thee not here).

Chief executive Ken McMeikan proudly announced that they have sold seven million of the said item since they cautiously introduced this revolutionary new product into selected stores to test the waters last February.

Such has been the success that the company has announced they plan to extend the new line to more of their outlets. I'll add at this point that Greggs is a Newcastle based company, not normally an area of the UK renowned for celebrating its lentil salads.

So well done to Greggs.
You have to wonder once the adventurous roll out of the bacon sarnie is complete, what further revelationary culinary delights the Greggs board will uncover.

Bags of Chips?
Meat pies?

Mr McMeikan is currently paid around £500,000 a year for his services....

Sheffield station

A classic

Some time back there was discussion on the merits of electrifying  the Sheffield to London line and how it would shave 20 minutes off the journey time.

Something we all thought at the the time could be more simply achieved by opening another couple of ticket windows....