Monthly Archives: October 2017

October 2017 Round-up

Right, that’s October out of the way, leaving just two months to go this year. But let’s not get too far ahead of ourselves. Before the year disappears, we have to have this thing:


It’s been another month of ups and downs, though less dramatic than last month

October 1: 231.4 pounds (16 stone 7.4 pounds, 105 kg)
October 31: 231.2 pounds (16 stone 7.2 pounds, 104.9 kg)

That’s an insignificant downward twitch of 0.2 pounds (


Yeah, still doing that.


One major photowalk at the start of the month, but not much after that.


A positively chatty 44 posts, the most since early last year.


Still no stuff to speak of…

Weight and Stuff Report – 30 October 2017

Weight: 230.9 pounds (16 stone 6.9 pounds, 104.7 kg)
Steps: 2,130

Down again today…

Here’s a large bit of artwork which is a wee bit hard to get to these days because of a load of annoying fences, which seem to relate to some redevelopment which is taking a long time to develop:



Camera: X-T2
Aperture: ƒ/11
Shutter speed: 1/280s
Focal length: 22mm
ISO: 200
Taken: 21 October, 2017
Location: 54° 34.8067′ 0″ N 1° 13.3375′ 0″ W



Shameless self-promotion time

A couple of weeks ago, I mentioned that I’d shifted my photography site to a new home, and that it was ready for your viewing pleasure.

Well, over the last few days, I’ve added a few new albums to it, so if you haven’t had a look lately, now would be as good a time as any. On the homepage, you’ll see a random selection of some of my favourites, and the Galleries drop-down menu will lead you to more: it’s got London, Edinburgh, air shows and Tigger, with more to come. Here’s that link again:

Les Bessant Photography

The Last Days of Jack Sparks – Jason Arnopp

Ths popped up as a recommendation on Amazon recently. As it sounded intriguing, and was 99p, I thought I’d give it a try. And ooooooh, good move.

Jack Sparks is, or was, a notoriously controversial journalist. Having moved on from music reviews, he’s written a serious successful series including one about his journey through Britain on a pogo stick, and most recently Jack Sparks on Drugs, a title which works in both the ways you might guess.

But it seems something happened to Jack while working on his next book, Jack Sparks on the Supernatural. And we gradually learn what. Presented as the unfinished manuscript of Jack’s new book, with an introduction and occasional comments from his brother, together with emails, text messages and interviews, this book takes the reader into the depths of Jack’s world.

It’s almost immediately apparent that Jack is, if not an unreliable narrator, then a self-deceiving egotistical, selfish git. The action starts with an exorcism in Italy, where Jack behaves very badly, and it’s downhill all the way from there. Disturbed by a strange video uploaded to his YouTube channel, Jack joins a bunch of paranormal investigators in California, whose experiment gets out of hand with lethal consequences.

And then things start to get really strange. Given Jack’s approximate relationship with the truth, we can’t be sure of anything he tells us, even after he’s had an apparent change of heart.

And can we trust the framing story written by Jack’s brother?

There’s a lot of ooooh, nasty moments and lots of laughs – Jack’s a funny writer. A very unpleasant, devious and manipulative bastard, but funny. And at the end, there’s some delicious ambiguity over what did (or didn’t) happen.

Well worth a read, and I’ll be reading more of Jason’s work. Apparently this book is being developed for a movie, which might be interesting.

Weight and Stuff Report – 28 October 2017

Weight: 232 pounds (16 stone 8 pounds, 105.2 kg)
Steps: 8,547

No change again…

I went to Amble today. I’ve passed through it a few times on the bus going to Alnwick and Warkworth, and thought it might be good for a look around, and so it was. It was a wee bit windy, but at least it was dry and not at all cold.

I had a walk through the harbour village where there are lots of little shops selling ice cream, jewellery, food, and many other things, then along the pier, which leads around to the far side of a small beach, which is a bit different. I had a look at the lifeboat[1], and stopped for a superb sausage sarnie from the Geordie Banger Company, who make their own sausages and sell them at markets and other places in the area. For £3 you get two big, just-fried sausages in a bun. Very good sausages, nicely cooked.

I had a wander through the streets, and then got a bus back to Newcastle.

I’m going to try including a map of my walk here:

And here’s a photo from the walk, some tasteful beach huts:

Beach Huts

Beach Huts

Camera: X-T2
Aperture: ƒ/9
Shutter speed: 1/180s
Focal length: 18.2mm
ISO: 200
Taken: 28 October, 2017
Location: 55° 20.2084′ 0″ N 1° 34.5621′ 0″ W

More photos to follow…


[1] Hi Geoff  :wave:

Weight and Stuff Report – 27 October 2017

Weight: 232 pounds (16 stone 8 pounds, 105.2 kg)
Steps: 2,130

No change today..

If you’re reading this on Facebook, make sure to click through, or you might miss a photo.

You might recall me mentioning the Vampire Bunny before – he’s an intriguing figure perched over the rear entrance of Cathedral Buildings. Here he is:

Vampire Bunny

Vampire Bunny

Camera: Canon EOS 5D Mark II
Aperture: ƒ/8
Shutter speed: 1/400s
Focal length: 200mm
ISO: 200
Taken: 31 May, 2011
Location: 54° 58.2282′ 0″ N 1° 36.5943′ 0″ W

Well, there’s been some work going on in the property – the front entrance on Dean Street was closed off for a while, but now it’s reopened, and there’s a really cool new entrance mat, which features the Bunny:

Welcome mat

Welcome mat

Camera: iPhone 6s
Aperture: ƒ/2.2
Shutter speed: 1/35s
Focal length: 4.15mm
ISO: 80
Taken: 27 October, 2017
Location: 54° 58.2282′ 0″ N 1° 36.5943′ 0″ W

I like that.