My day was spent recovering from a busy yesterday, trying not to get too hot in all the hotness, and then when I should have been saying profound things here I was watching the first Men’s Hundred Game, which was every bit as entertaining as yesterday’s game, again because it was a good game, and was again won by the Oval Invincibles, this time the men’s version.
So, a photo from the I Just Like It collection, photoed way back in 2007:
He’s photoing Big Ben, with the friend in the horizontally striped stockings in front of it, which means he has to be phptoing from pavement level.
I love the contortions we photoers get ourselves into to get the exact photo we want. It’s as if the process, being so easy, has to become complicated, or else where’s the creativity?
Landscape painters never used to behave like this. They just parked their easels in a comfortable spot for painting, and started painting.
Maybe it’s just that we photoers do this kind of thing because we can!
Haven’t been feeling my best today. So a photo from the I Just Like It File:
On the left is the photo I Just Like, photoed in June 2014, by the River, way out east, beyond the Barrier, near a sewage works. And on the right, for anyone who cares, enough context to give a decent clue about how this strange photo came about.
I actually think this photo looks better in the smaller version, because all the shadowy stuff is a bit out of focus.
Swans being so very elegant, I am only one of many who likes to photo them, and there’s nothing special about my swan photos, unless the swans are the wrong colour, that being a posting here that keeps on being visited from time to time. But these knitted swans are definitely swans with a difference.
I don’t know about you, but I thought England did quite well last night. They matched a superb Italian side for two hours and more, only losing very narrowly on penalties. It was as close as these things can be. Had Italy won 6-0, that would have been very bad, but that didn’t happen. As it was England were the better team in the first half, and when Italy came back at them so strongly after half time they could have disintegrated, but didn’t. Nor did England get knocked out earlier in the tournament. I know lots of people say that in sport, winning is everything, but it’s clearly not so. A good losing effort counts for a lot. Winning is better, I know that, but losing well is not nothing.
So, I for one have no problem contemplating where it all happened, again:
Those photos were photoed at irregular intervals, and from various spots since the new Wembley got finished. Photo 1, as I recall: Hampstead. Photos 2 and 3: Up River, towards Putney. 4: From the Top of Tate Modern. 5: From the top of the Air Forces Memorial just above Runnymede, a walk away from where I grew up. 6: After I’d actually been at a match at the olace. 7: Somewhere south, but not sure exactly where (The archives weren’t always as well organised as they later got to be. 8 and 9: From the top of the tower of Westminster Cathedral. Some of these views are very distant, but it’s there in every one I promise you.
And it continues being one of my favourite London Big Things.
All eyes are on Wembley just now. I am even now watching The Final, England being one up after half an hour, having been one up after two minutes of course. Italy are getting back into it though, and as if to prove the beginning of this sentence spot on, just when I typed in the previous comma but one, they nearly managed an equaliser. The England goalie was well beaten. But now England have just missed a goal, so as of now I have no idea how it will end.
Having nothing useful to contribute in the way of football analysis, I went looking for Wembley photos in the archives, and encountered this trove of photos, all named and numbered and resized and ready to go but which have yet to be displayed here, of what I still think of as the “new” Wembley, when they were busy constructing it, way back in 2005:
September 20th 2005 to be exact, again with the Canon S1 IS, which was as I’ve said earlier in the week, very hit or miss. But quite a hit that day, I think. I have seen a game inside this new stadium and it is a stadium much like any other. But that arch was a stroke of genius. If we still want to think about football in a few days time, I may gather together some more of my Wembley photos, this time of how it looks in the bigger London picture.
It’s now half time, and the BBC commetators are all explaining why England are winning. But Mancini will have plenty to say to his team, and Italy will surely be better than they were at the start of this.
E-scooters can go at 60mph, but these ones are fixed so they can only do 15mph. You can ride them on the road but not on the pavement. This way, the e-scooting community will be in danger themselves, but will subject pedestrians to fewer dangers. All will depend on how this is policed.
My current personal opinion is that making e-scooters work will require a major upheaval of the transport system, and this will not happen in a city like London any time very soon. Much more likely is that some place, somewhere on earth, where the masses really want e-scooters and are very willing to take the risks of driving them at a worthwhile speed, will subject itself to this upheaval, and may even make it work semi-safely. At which point, the rest of the world will look, and copy, maybe. But, I think all of that is quite a way off. For now, they’ll only be toys for boy racers. During Lockdown, the roads were rather empty and they worked well and were winked at the by law, even though supposedly illegal. I suspect that will all end now.
But, those are only my guesses. We shall see.
My photos don’t show the details of what was on those cards legibly. Sorry about that. In can tell you that the middle card of the three in the last photo was “Rules of the Road”, but the rules were unreadable. The bloke in my photo presumably did better in that regard. Maybe I should have used my mobile.
Even then, with my antiquated Canon S1 IS, I was already photoing goodish photos, or at any rate photos I thought were goodish (and still do). It was just that the success rate then was a bit lower, and the light had to be perfect. That day, it was.
I reckon about a third of those views would look exactly the same now. However, anything with a camera or a map in it is now history. Cameras and maps are now the same things, apart from that tube map on those pants. Mobile phones can’t yet double up as underwear.
Plus, the City of London Big Thing cluster is now … a cluster, rather than just isolated oddities. Who knew then how quickly the Gherkin would be smothered by other Bigger Things? Well, probably a lot of people knew, but I was not one of them.
I have a particular soft spot for photo 6, the one with what looks to me like a thing made of cocktail sticks. It looks to me like a thing made with cocktail stick because I used to make things like that with cocktail sticks. Although, that one in the above photo is extremely primitive compared to some of the things I made, shapes I have never seen since. Memo to self: I must dig out the photos of those, such as the photos were. My stick objects, sadly, predated digital photography.
Yes, around five years ago, or so, I had a phase of photoing vans, white vans in particular. I seem to recall some Labour woman politician having a go at them, and I think that pissed me off and I had in mind to stick up lots of white van photos to glorify them and to unglorify her.
That lot is just the photos I photoed in the one month of July 2016. Which means there are a great many more such in the archives of around that time.
But then, I kind of lost interest in these things. Somewhere in my somewhere-on-that-spectrum mind of mine is the notion that these collections only work if the basic shape of the things in question is the same every time, with only the decor being different. That is certainly the rule I follow with taxis. Taxis come in several different shapes, but I only photo one shape. The others don’t appeal.
One of the above white vans (photo 20) isn’t even white. I include this van because I like it, what with it being parked under one of the stands at the Oval, and it’s nearly white. I recently heard Surrey cricket commentator Mark Church describe this colour as “duck egg blue”. He was talking about the Surrey shirts for T20 games, but they looked like they were the exact same colour.
I’ve already featured a photo of No. 1 Croydon here. And here is another photo here of a small poster featuring this favourite-building-of-mine, which shows that I am not the only one with a special place in my heart for this building.
But neither photo was photoed during a deliberate expedition to Croydon. The first was photoed only when I was doing a change at a Croydon Station, on my way back home from Epsom Race Course. And the second, of a little poster, is not anywhere near Croydon. I spotted it in the company of Michael Jennings, a walk away from where he lives, out east.
Follow the first link above to see the way that No.1 Croydon is usually photoed, in splendid isolation. What I did was photo it in context, in the spirit of the second of these two photos, the one by Michael Jennings of that Gehry Museum in Bilbao.
Photo 6 is like my earlier photo, just not as flattering. And photo 7 may be a reflection (photo 8 is definitely a reflection) of No.1 Croydon, in some windows. Not sure, but I think it is. I only really included those two to make up the numbers. Seven photos would have to be in a line. Nine photos make a nice square, which I prefer.
Photo 5 includes lots of wires in the foreground, another favourite phenomenon of mine. These are wires for Croydon’s trams, as you can just about make out.
While I’m on the subject of postings past, here is one from the old blog from exactly five years ago, featuring a crane cluster photo, which I have also just transferred to here. Brexit was then being hailed by its enemies as the latest bringer of economic doom. So, I asked, would Brexit mean the departure of all the cranes from the London skyline?
Hasn’t happened so far. I’m not getting out nearly as much these days as I’d like. But, here is a photo that a friend recently photoed in Stratford, with all its Olympic stuff, of the present state of the Olympic village:
It’s been a while since I’ve even set eyes on all the cranes in the Battersea/Vauxhall area, but they can’t all have disappeared by now, even if their number may now be starting to diminish.
And if the story I linked to recently about how there are 587 new towers in the pipeline is anything to go by, the cranes will be around for quite a while.
2008 and all that didn’t stop the march of the cranes, and Brexit hasn’t either. People all over my bit of the internet are celebrating that Brexit, economically, seems to be working out okay, five years after the vote. This has been my celebration.