Tuesday, 30 March 2010

Jay and Kay Save the World! (Part 3)

This is it, the final Caution Wet Paint comic! Not exactly the final CWP ever, but the last creative spurt for a while...

(Click to enlarge)


Can Jay and Kay save the world and themselves from the evil of Captain Goldtop? Will the milky remnants of Silvertop prove to be too much? Find out as we reveal the magic and laughter behind 'the paint'...

Jay and Kay Save the World! (Part 3)


El Director will still be blogging away on thing film and not-so-film related. You can follow him further by clicking here.

And Jay and Kay WILL return one day...

Sunday, 28 March 2010

Mi Gustas (13)

I like...Caution Wet Paint!

I have spent the best part of three years pursuing my film making down one path. The hope of making a feature length film called 'Caution Wet Paint'. On the way, I made a series of short films, prequels if you like, as a taster and as a way to try and break into the film making world with this fun filled comedy.

Alas, all good things however must come to an end. Caution Wet Paint has not achieved what I set out for it, and although it officially ends tomorrow, I hope to someday bring it back with a little sprinkling of fairy dust...

So until the next time, all I can say is...'I like you...OK!'

Saturday, 27 March 2010

The Internet Break...

Ah yes, those famed moments when I drop ou tof view for sometime. Well, I feel that I need such a break and so from Tuesday 30th March for a couple of weeks, I am taking a web break. Just business e-mails, but no news, views or any other bull that goes on in the world.

Why, well one of two things. Firstly, I am bringing CWP to an end, and so I no longer 'need' to be online as much. Although I have greatly reduced my online precence since Autumn last year, the official end of the Paint means that I will be more dedicated to the traditional streams of film makking.

Secondly, time. I plan to be very busy in the next couple of weeks and so I really want to cut back on web useage.

Thirdly, and most important, I need a break. Sometimes you get electronic overlaod, and I feel it. I want to take some time out away from the web.

Important e-mails will get through, as will the real world.

Oh, and I am up to something. That is the 'fourth' reason why for th next two weeks I will reduce my prescence. Call it a social experiment, but I am upto something 'funky'...

Friday, 26 March 2010

London Diary (22)

4am.

It was abnormal.

Getting up at this time was not right.

It went against every grain in his body.

Going to sleep at this time, that was different.

But getting up, no...

Sometimes her had no choice.

It was the path that money had laid out for him.

But of course, everyone had a choice.

He made the right choices?

Maybe...

But 4am - that was a not a good choice to make.

He rubbed his face and sipped the tea.

Looking outside, it was still dark.

Although dawn was just around the corner, it still felt...unreal.

4am!

Thursday, 25 March 2010

You got to love these pigs...

Dear Rt Hon MP for Pigs Trough,

I would like to arrange a meeting where I can give you a large wad of cash. In return I want you to arrange meetings for me with government and officials so I can make huge amounts of profits from shaping government policy.

Yours,

Charlie

---

Dear Charlie,

Show me the money!

Yours,

Rt Hon MP for Pigs Trough

---

The Dispatches TV Programme that shows the fuckers filling up their pockets!

Youtube clip showing the main highlights.

It is a shame that everyone is masturbating to Dancing with the Stars of whatever.

And look who knows who...

Wikipedia Entrance for the latest of the long line of scandals...

Wednesday, 24 March 2010

Crossings of the River Thames (28) - Tower Bridge



Okay, this is the big one. When I first started my journey all that time ago in West London, this bridge was the target. London's most famous icon, recognised throughout the world, and the last bridge on my travels through London, this is Tower Bridge!



Where do I begin. Well, a potted history is in order. Opened in 1894, this crossing represents a combination is ingenuity and brilliant engineering. Tower Bridge was built at the time when London itself was the busiest port in the world. And the Thames was one giant dockyard. London needed a bridge that would cater to the expanding populations of the East End but at the same time would not impede river traffic. The growth of the metropolis was astounding, but such is the draw of money. That legacy is still with us Londoners today, as we inhabit the EU's biggest city with the Thames flowing through it. The trade has shifted from the water towards the air and the virtual, but as a result of this historic capacity, Tower Bridge remains the most easterly place in London to walk over the river.

So yes, this is London's only raising bascule bridge over the River Thames, a spectacular feat of engineering that still today can bring the city to a standstill. Yes, despite the reduction in river traffic, it opens a hundred times a year, with river traffic having priority over road traffic and has famously left some world leaders behind.

Tower Bridge is also the only crossing point to have a whole museum installed inside of it. Having visited it almost ten years ago, I think a revisit will be in order in the not-too-distant future of the absolutely fantastic Tower Bridge Exhibition. Pricey, yes, it is. Fantastic, absolutely! Informative, yes, and entertaining, very!



Tower Bridge is pretty, some say in a gaudy way, but screw them. I absolutely love the Victorian sense of kitsch in trying to match the nearby Tower of London. All that stone cladding is a fallacy however. None of it actually supports the bridge. For beneath the decoration, Tower Bridge is steel and concrete. It is the only way it could support itself and raise the roadways. However, never underestimate the prettiness of the structure.



Tower Bridge also marks one of the slowest ways to cross the Thames by car. A rigorous system of cameras means that 20mph is strictly enforced along with a 17ton weight limit. This actually makes it quite civilised for the thousands of tourists and pedestrians that use the bridge on foot. Tower Bridge also marks the eastern end of the Congestion Charge Zone (with Vauxhall marking the western boundary).



Tower Bridge also marks one very last boundary, the end of Central London. Yes, from Vauxhall Bridge right through, this tour of London's waterside has taken in the most famous landmarks of the city. Right through its great pulsating heart I have travelled, seeing the sights and sounds of this famed capital. But now my crossings will take in the suburbs of London again. However, from here I am venturing to a very different part of London, towards the east. THese suburbs are very different in tone from the greenery of the western half of the city. The East End was very much shaped by the river, the industry that wrought thorugh its heart and is today a vital part of London itself. This final phase of London's river crossings may not match the grandeur of West London. But it will take in a part of the city, rich in heritage. And it is a journey that is very much subterranean.

Tower Bridge is London's last bridge. That is it! Now we are in a world of tunnels and ferries. We are heading on a journey that will fascinate as well as titillate. And as a finale to this series of River Crossing along the Thames I cannot wait!

Getting there and away:

Tower Bridge is served by three separate stations. Tower Hill (District/Circle), Tower Gateway (DLR) and Fenchurch Street (Mainline Terminus) all on the northern side of the river. Also on this side of the Thames, bus routes 15, N15 and N550 serve the bridge. Bus routes 42, 78 and RV1 cross the bridge while 47, 343, 381, N47, N343 and N381 serve the southbank.

Tuesday, 23 March 2010

Huh?

It was nice and sunny this morning.

Now it is windy and cloudy.

Tonight there is going to be rain.

I want to cry!

Monday, 22 March 2010

Jay and Kay Save the World! (Part 2)

Last week, Jay and Kay were beamed away by a milk bottle that had previously milked a cereal bowl...

What has happened to our intrepid duo, where do they find themselves now?

(Click to enlarge)


Read on and find out more as Jay and Kay face up to the nefarious Captain Goldtop and the imbecilic Lieutenant Silvertop. These two wicked milk bottles want only one thing - the enslavement of humanity!

Jay and Kay Save the World! (Part 2)


What next will happen to Jay and Kay? Find out next week, for the very last Caution Wet Paint!

Sunday, 21 March 2010

Mi Gustas (12)

I like...strikes!



(Photo Source - Kaihsu Tai)

Yes, they are a pain in the arse, yes they do cause inconvenience and yes, the striking workforce almost never gets what it wants by going on strike. But the right to strike is a fundamental right.

Sadly, many people in the UK have bought the propaganda left, right and centre that strikes are an abomintion on society.

Oh the belief that everyone is happily middle class. You pompous indebted fools. You are as far up s**t creek as the BA Workers

Saturday, 20 March 2010

Spring Haiku

Spring here nose itchy
Winter's gone weather switchy
Feelings now twitchy

Friday, 19 March 2010

London Diary (21)

Sushi!

Everything about it satisfied her.

First, the word itself, Sushi! It rolled off the tongue complete with satisfaction, along with what she consumed, the sushi itself. Like all the best dishes from around the world, its origins are probably hidden in the midst of the past, a situation of poverty and desperation, that rose through the ranks of society until today, thousands of people around the world pay extortionate amounts of cash in order to eat raw fish.

That is a good question, she thought to herself. How come something that is raw, costs so much. In fact, why is fish expensive, full stop? However, this puzzle only momentarily occupied her mind as she nibbled on a piece of Gari. Etiquette required her to eat the ginger between each dish in order to cleanse her palette or something like that.

But it was not just the food, it was the company that made Sushi so special. For you see, it is an event. You don't just grab Sushi, despite the democratisation of the glamorous lifestyle. You make time for Sushi. She made time for Sushi. And there was a reason why. A good reason? Well that depended on who's point of view you were looking at. For her it certainly was not a good reason, but that did not matter. It felt good, to be sitting in a restaurant, looking out as the city walked by. It may be spring, but the nights were still cold enough and long enough to make it feel more than pleasant when sitting inside with a special someone.

She took a look in his eyes. For the moment he was busy wolfing down the sushi. He was not worried about etiquette or the finer thoughts of sushi. It was a simple way to fill up for him.

There was something fulfilling about the whole evening. Ther company, the mist filled windows, the Sushi. Another night was passing her by, and she had to make a decision. But first, where was the soy sauce...

Wednesday, 17 March 2010

Lies, Damned Lies, and Statistics

The Good news is that unemployment has fallen.

The bad news is that employment has fallen.

Go figure...

You see, unemployment is counted by the number of people claiming benefits from the government, a stipend that week after week you collect. Termed 'Benefits' it is horrific if you are forced onto it and pisses off the rest of the tax paying population if you sponge the system.

But after six months, you are forced onto 'means tested' benefits which makes it a lot harder to claim this stipend if you have savings or have partner working. The whole system is just broken and makes no one happy.

The other stats are equally mind boggling.

8 million people (over 18-under 65) are 'economically inactive' - students, early retirement, given up looking for work.

This is really worrying. Over 6 million people, 10% of the UK is now employed by the state. 22 million is employed by the private sector. In other words, only 22 million people, just over a third of the population is generating any real economic benefit for the country (lawyers do not count towards economic benefit).

Let us see where it goes. Under two months until the election!

Tuesday, 16 March 2010

This is £20...



...at the moment twenty quid is just under four hour's pay at minimum wage. For that note, you can (approximately) buy two tickets to a suburban cinema, a modest Chinese takeaway for a family of four or around half a tank of petrol in a small car. In many parts of the world, £20 is not a bad weekly wage. In many countries I have travelled to, £20 is ample for a full day's living; that is accommodation, food, travel and 'fun'.

£20 is the second highest denomination issued by the Bank of England (after the £50 note) and like the £5 (fiver) and £10 (tenner) notes it has it's own nickname – a Score.

At the moment, you would think twice before breaking a twenty pound note, but usually, most shops will have change for it, if spending a reasonable amount over £1 (say, £1.34). By the time you spend £2, most punters will expect change for a £20.

But how much will it be worth in a year? Or two years? Our currency is depreciating fast, and what may seem a small fortune to a worker in McDonalds, is going to (probably) seem pretty worthless in the near future. Wages will rise and any savings (ha!) that people may have will be wiped out.

An election is happening soon. And instead of dealing with matters of import, such as the economy, our current government seems more interested in dogs. Great.

Only those close to me knows who I am going to vote for, but here is a hint. I want the guys who are going to increase interest rates to get into power. Yes, I know the Bank of England is independent, but I wonder how much of the current policy is politically influenced? After all, no one wants repossessions thise close to an election (or ever) but the fact of the matter is that we a country that is living beyond its means. If we cannot pay off our debts, than we have to claim bankruptcy and let someone new take-over the running of the mess.

So yeah, how much will that £20 be worth in a year's time?

Monday, 15 March 2010

Jay and Kay Save the World! (Part 1)

All that Jay wants is a peaceful breakfast in suburbia. That illusion of tranquility is shattered by Kay's obnoxious dancing, and a whole lot more...



The final adventure from 'Caution Wet Paint' starts here! With dancing, aliens and so much more, take a look at Jay and Kay's grand adventure to the edge of reality - and beyond!

(Click to enlarge)
Jay and Kay Save the World! (Part 1)


This is it - 'Caution Wet Paint' is coming to an end! Enjoy the final adventure, share the laughs and beware of the milk...

Sunday, 14 March 2010

Mi Gustas (11)

I like...maps!




Destination, the Middle East? Not quite, but there is a plan in my mind. And there is nothing better than getting a map to plan that journey out. I plan to cover some 8,000 miles in a month or so, overland, through to the heart of Asia. So is this my next big plan after the Crossings of the Thames? TBC...

Saturday, 13 March 2010

Crossings of the River Thames - an update!


(A piece of Rennie's London Bridge, in the pavement outside the Royal Exchange)

I started this journey across London a very long time ago. In a different era, in a different time, all the way in West London through to the centre of this fair city.

I started this series of crossings for many reasons. Primarily it was to get me away from the world of film making and other hum drum activities. Once a month I would have to leave my little world and open my eyes to see what else was out there.

This series has provided a certain stability to my oh-so-chaotic life and in an almost autistic manner, I have catalogued every crossing point across the Thames, every month that I have been in London. It has allowed me to explore the city I call home and to discover some quite surprising aspects of this fair town. Not only have I seen some fantastic parts of London, I have managed to uncover for myself and the readers of this blog, a different side to a place that on the surface seems all too familiar.

And so here is the full list of crossings, over, under or through the Thames that I have visited. Just a reminder of the 'rules'. Each crossing must be readily accessible to the public on foot. They also must be in Greater London for some or all of their length.



In other words, there can be no restrictions on access, or limitations to pedestrians. So the Blackwall Tunnel is not included as it is a vehicle only tunnel. Likewise, all the tunnels under the Thames on the Tube network are not included because of the trains that will kill you every few minutes. It also must be open to the public on a regular basis. It can be seasonal or even closed at night, but one-offs (such as the reopened Thames Tunnel) are off the list.

So, from west to east are the crossings so far visited:

Hampton Ferry (Plus a How to get there bit)
Hampton Court Bridge
Kingston Bridge
Teddington Lock
Ham Ferry
Richmond Bridge
Twickenham Bridge (Two Posts)
Richmond Lock
Kew Bridge
Chiswick Bridge
Barnes Railway Bridge
Hammersmith Bridge
Putney Bridge
Fulham Railway Bridge
Wandsworth Bridge
Battersea Bridge
Albert Bridge
Chelsea Bridge
Vauxhall Bridge
Lambeth Bridge
Westminster Bridge
Hungerford Bridge (Two Posts)
Waterloo Bridge
Blackfriars Bridge
Millennium Bridge
Southwark Bridge
London Bridge (Two Posts)

Take a read. Spelling mistakes and everything else, enjoy what I have seen and chronicled of this great city!

And still to come:

Tower Bridge
Rotherhithe Tunnel
Canary Wharf-Rotherhithe Ferry
Greenwich Foot Tunnel
Woolwich Ferry
Woolwich Foot Tunnel

That means, this journey could well come to an end by this year. Along the way, I have (of course) distracted myself from this herculean task, so it is no garuntee, but 2010 could see the sunset on my little wander trough London. And then what?

Ah, that could be revealed tomorrow...

Friday, 12 March 2010

London Diary (20)

He looked up at the night sky, shivering with cold, adrenaline or was it fear? It was easy to disguise one for te other on the streets of this city. Cynical, looking somewhere else to spit out his emotions and his inner phlegm, there was nothing he wanted more that to feel flesh. In any shape or form. He wanted to pound it, hurt someone, physically, with brutality. There was nothing more in him that he wished to do, the capacity for violence was exponential inside of him.

He breathed in, deeply at first before his breaths returned to normal. The feeling of cold had passed, but there was more inside of him. Pain, anger, hurt. Revenge. That was always powerful. It felt good, to inflict pain onto someone else, but he had to be careful. Always someone else was watching, which was why he liked the nights. Silent. Empty, no one around to spy, squeal or stop him.

He shivered again as a gust of wind blew through the buildings. The mini concrete blocks that created a tunnel for the weather to shunt through. Useless he thought, his achievements so far In life, in love, in wealth, in whatever measurements the world cared to use. He did not even feel a grandness in what he was going to do tonight. Just another step on the road to hell he thought, but nonetheless he was committed...

Thursday, 11 March 2010

Reserve Battery...

My laptop says 6%.

That leaves only a few minutes to come up with a brilliant blog post.

It could be funny, whimsical or more sombre.

I could take a look at my past, mull over my present or despair at my future.

But I must hurry as my battery is now down to 5%.

Maybe if I shut off the other browser (what, you work off only one web browser - please, not IE)

Or if I put down my contrast and darken my screen, that should save some battery power.

4%.

You see, I am off to bed soon. Just arrived from work (check the publish time for this post - ridiculous) and so I really do not want to plug in the laptop and leave it on all morning.

3%.

So where was I? Oh yes, I munched on a packet of funny shaped crisps. My stomach is now somersaulting with acid. Nice. Oh, and I am still cold from the wind off the cycle. Spring my ass...

So as I think of what tags to now put into the 'tag box', I guess all I can say is...

2%.

Damn, must go. Toodles!

Tuesday, 9 March 2010

To Infinity and Beyond!

Infinity + 1 = Infinity
Infinity - 1 = Infinity
Infinity x Infinity = Infinity
Infinity / Infinity = Infinity (or 1)

By those calculations 'Infinity' could well be '1'.

Confused?

Look at this

Or maybe you can buy it.

Infinity has a better name than a Graham.

Does infinity really matter?

Are there infinite possibilities to this finite life?

If so, did I make the right choice...

Monday, 8 March 2010

The End is Coming!

It has been a great ride in CWP land, but all things must come to an end. So to announce it in style is the very last adventure with Jay and Kay, for now...

(Click to Enlarge)


Starting from next week we will see Jay and Kay in their final and greatest adventure, as they try to save humanity and themselves! It has been a great adventure but my film making life is taking me down a new path...

CWP Ends!

Sunday, 7 March 2010

Mi Gustas (10)

I like...Discussion!

We humans like to talk. Hell, this blog is one long soliloquy, everyday, me discussing life, the universe and everything else. But that is wht makes us as people, as individuals so interesting. The ability to think, process and communicate ideas on a variety of topics from Overland Driving to Free Will. But no matter what we say, talk is cheap. It is actions that define us not words. Still, it is good to even discuss that particular truism...

Saturday, 6 March 2010

A Hung Parliament?

We do not do coalitions in the UK. Normally our governments win huge outright majorities. In effect, we elect a dictator for five years to rule us like hogs for (well, at the most) five years.

So far, opinion polls for election 2010 show the possibility of a Hung Parliament. Now, that is unlikely. The UK has only had one Hung Parliament since WWII (if you don't include the brief rebellion under Major). The Conservatives are very likely to win an outright majority and so we are likely to have a 'strong' new PM.

Now, our economy is screwed, and for someone in my position (some savings, no debt, no family dependent on the state like children and a job) the best thing for me to see is interest rate rises and a deficit drop so that the pound can recover and I can get richer. Of course, this would annihilate the rest of the population of the UK whom are saddled with debt, have no savings, probably depends on the state for a lot of services and have a precarious job. For someone like me, a strong government (from any side) hellbent on creating mass financial destruction would be a good thing.

On the other hand, a hung parliament would be fantastic for the rest of the UK. More fiddling while Rome burns and more schemes to delay the inevitable debt repayment of the country while the politicians try to claw onto power. Of course, I would also love to see how a Hung Parliament works, if only to tell my kids (if I can afford them) what it was like. You see, a Hung Parliament is a bit like a Blue Moon, a rare event in nature and so while it would probably not be good for the UK as a whole, it would abe a fascinating spectacle.

But the all important question is this Will my vote actually matter? If so, will I take my first ever vote in a General Election this year?

Friday, 5 March 2010

London Diary (19)

Despite the warmth emanating from each other's bodies, there was very little else between the two lovers. The heat kept them comfortable in the cold of the night. The window was open as they lay on the bed, together, but silent. Neither one wanting to say anything. They had their reasons for lying next to each other. Firstly, there was pleasure. Despite everything else, the sheer physical pleasure was enough to keep the two of them side by side, although they both felt little beyond immediate gratification.

There was also a sense of companionship. Cynical as both of them were, London is a lonely city and for them, for each other, that brief moment together was a moment that they did not have to face alone. A moment of togetherness, a moment in which they could feel something a little bit more than sheer emptiness.

And maybe there was something deeper between the two of them. That went beyond the physical. That went beyond the fear. But it would take more than just lying together in silence and warmth to unearth that. And it was something that neither was prepared to find out.

Thursday, 4 March 2010

Sleep?

Again, I have been burning the candle at both ends and tonight/this morning it has finally caught up with me. Will snooze for a bit methinks...

Wednesday, 3 March 2010

Brazil at the Emirates!

We in London are blessed wth a lot of (beautiful) nationalities. That means, whenever there is an international game to be played, odds on there are supporters of that country in this fair city of ours. Until there is a Sri Lanka vs Seychelles game (where my loyalties will be tied), I usually support the country with the best looking women. So last night when Brazil were playing Ireland at the (stunning) home of Arsenal F.C, I was a Brazilian fan. And so would you, my dear reader...

I love going to the Emirates, it is a beautiful stadium and the company is always fun. So too was the match. Although Brazil were sheer class, credit is due to Ireland who took the game to Brazil and did not aim to sit in defence. It was a good show by both teams and the crowd was friendly throughout. But the star was Rubinho, brilliant in every way and entertaining the crowd with his lighting quick feet, he sealed the win for Brazil, deservedly so. Commiserations Ireland, but you can hold your heads up high, you gave it a go, and you provided us with some thrills and spills for the evening.

So here's to South Africa 2010!

Tuesday, 2 March 2010

Nicknames

Nicknames. Funny little things. Sometimes they are terms of affection, sometimes they are terms of derision, but love them or loathe them, they stick.

Nicknames can be based on many thins. Appearance (not usually complimentary), smells, behavior or just a simple basis on your own name.

'Caramel'.

That's the latest moniker attributed to me by my work colleagues (in public). Of course, I probably have far less desirable names behind my back, but at the moment, the name, 'Caramel' is what I have been anointed with.

There is a thought process behind the name. It is a tortuous one but bear with me. I always tell my colleagues to 'take it easy' just before departing the building. We sometimes have to 'deal' with the Great British Public. So we need to keep our tempers from straying. Just like the advert for the chocolate bar, I tell everyone to 'take it easy', and so the baptism of a new nickname.

But what is far more interesting to find out is what they call me behind my back ;)

Monday, 1 March 2010

The Caution Wet Paint Guide to...

...the 2000 Anti-Terror Act!

(Click to Enlarge)


Uncle Tony was such a great PM. Yes. He made Britain great. Yes. He also made Britain safe. Yes he did. Oh, Tony you are fine, you're so fine you blow my mind, hey Tony!

The CWP Guide to the 2000 Anti-Terror Act