Wednesday, 16 December 2009

On Caviar & Comics

Tonight was my work Christmas do. And it was quite a do. Having had a couple of days off, I went to the office, glanced briefly at an inbox full of troublesome e-mails and then headed off to the Covent Garden Hotel for lunch.

We were told to dress up (unusual for an office full of Converses, jeans and hoodies) and I'm glad I did - the hotel is beautiful. We were shown to a private room in which I was not the only one impressed by the cloth wallpaper...or wallcloth perhaps. I'm sorry, I don't know the correct term. The food was fantastic. I had caviar for the first time - not much I hasten to add - a small helping on top of the rémoularde which accompanied my starter of smoked salmon. Fear not - I'm not going to run through the menu, but for a born and bred Essex boy I feel caviar in a swanky hotel is something of a milestone :) In all honesty, there wasn't even enough of it to really taste it - what I did manage to separate from the rest of my meal felt a bit like I was eating tiny bubbles. You can take the boy out of Essex...

Then went on to the pub - so please excuse any glaring spelling errors, 'tis not my fault but the fault of the good brewers at Becks Vier.

When I left this morning, sliding along the pavement like Bambi on the ice due to some new shoes I bought with my birthday funds, it was so cold my fingers nearly fell off and each breath hung in the air. I'm not moaning though - I love winter. It is my season of choice, and not only because it houses the joyous anniversary of my birth. I think everything looks better in winter. Lights shine brighter, homes look more inviting and there is a lot to be said for knitwear and winter jackets. I think winter suits London, and after some drinks in the pub, I took some time out from my desperate laps around Covent Garden Market in search of a public WC (I'm sure somebody's tampered with the signs, I was on a wild goose chase for a good 20minutes) to take some extremely festive photos on my new phone!

Yes, new phone. I am now a card carrying member of the I-Squad and have to admit that I love it. I don't know how I functioned with a phone minus all the clever little applications you can download - although I am trying to stay aware of the fact that they are money-making machines, Apple is terribly efficient in offering you applications that do exactly what you need, exactly when you need them. I MUST BE CAREFUL.

Saying that, I downloaded a clever little app that lets you download comic books which I'm really impressed with. I'm not a massive comic buff, but it's quite interesting how the designers have made use of this new platform when laying pages out - pressing next doesn't necessarily take you to the next page, but zooms in a different part of the current spread, or zooms out to show more, so that you bounce from speech bubble to speech bubble like you're watching a tennis match. Very clever...

The particular comic that impressed me was called 'The Stuff of Legend' by Mike Raicht and Brian Smith, illustrated by Charles Paul Wilson III and published by Th3rd World Studios. The artwork is breathtaking - all in sepia tones which is in keeping, I suppose, with it's WW2 setting. But while WW2 rages in the background and is rarely commented on directly, a battle on a smaller scale forms the main storyline - that of a group of toys, come to life in The Dark (a world inside their owner's cupboard, full of abandoned toys) on a quest to rescue the boy who owns them from the Boogie Man. It may sound odd, but give it a go - I do recommend it.

Anyway, I'd best be off - have to get in early tomorrow to actually deal with the e-mails I 'filed' this morning!

Festive wishes,


PS What a rant - Christmas - caviar - 'why I like winter' - new phone - comics - sorry, will try to be more structured :)

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