Posts filed under “Me, myself, and I” (page 2)

Fuji X100: reloaded

I now have a Fuji X100. Early Christmas present to myself!

I actually had a Fuji X100 many years ago, I loved it, and I wrote about it in some length. I ragequit it a few months later when it repeatedly misfocused while photographing the winners of an event at a tiny track in the middle of nowhere because I can be a little capricious. I sold it to a guy I met on a train for about £250, taking about a £100 hit for what I paid for it, because I wanted it gone as fast as possible and did I mention I can be a little capricious.

I always semi-regretted selling that camera. It was somewhat old then (and is now a decade old!), but it almost always got awesome photos under any kind of nasty and/or dim artificial light, if the subject did not move too fast. And, other than Fuji's later cameras that took the X100 design and added more letters to the end, there is still nothing quite like it. (Unless you count Leica's digital offerings and...well, they're quite the thing, but I'm not paying that kind of money.)

Well, let me backtrack there. The combination of being small, being of little weight, having a fixed fast lens of "perfect normal" focal length, and looking superb under artificial light...rather describes today's flagship camera phones.

Which I have no interest in! Because I don't want to buy into either Google's obsessive tracking and the Android vendors' unwillingness to provide timely security updates, nor into Apple's lack of a fucking headphone jack (nope, I'll still never regard this as normal, and you won't talk me out of it). I've dealt with the phone manufacturers being fucking awful by compartmentalising, and having multiple phones for different purposes. Including one just as a camera! My long term plan is to switch to the pure-Linux PinePhone when the software matures, but that's not now. And the camera on the PinePhone is not all that good and seems like it will always be (which is to take nothing away from the people who are working hard on the software end of this).

I have my Nikon SLR gear of course, all of which is old and tired and malfunctioning and in a couple of cases falling apart, due to years of abuse and being used in the very dusty Norfolk Arena. I always hated lugging that stuff around. It's nice to once again have a camera I don't mind carrying!

Oh, and merry Christmas to all of you, and all of your people. :)

In lieu of being productive

My brother Alex came over in his E30 to make my driveway look much cooler. 80s car friends, yay! 💕 We've been meaning to get a photo of them together, when they are both working, so we did!

Actually, the goal today was not to add even more obnoxiously loud colours to my driveway, but to get Alex's clutch working on his 1963 Land Rover, not pictured (yet). That did not work, because of a lack of parts. We thought the clutch slave cylinder was dead, because Alex had installed it upside down (which means bleeding it will not work as as it should). With the slave cylinder installed the right way up and with the system bled appropriately, the clutch still didn't work, which means the master cylinder is probably dead in some way. We didn't have a master cylinder, so that should have been the end of the day.

Except...once you start, you're sort of committed to doing something that day, so we decided to save it by getting stuff done in lieu of getting anything done that we actually wanted to, like cleaning up the chassis & an outrigger in preparation for a second fuel tank to be fitted.

HEALTH AND SAFETY VIOLATION! Always wear a mask while spraying. You do not want to inhale paint. If you sniff paint fumes too much you'll end up like me or Alex.

By which I mean Alex cleaned up the chassis & an outrigger in preparation for a second fuel tank to be fitted. I mostly sat around making stupid jokes and offering encouragement and giving the occasional good idea. The work itself didn't require a second person.

Me, being a not very useful second person, today

But, I did get to hang out with my brother at a sensible distance, we had a day of fun and of getting things done that we didn't intend to do and of decades-old in-jokes, we consumed food, and Alex departed with a wicked rolling burnout down my street to round it off.

Sometimes, an unproductive day can be a good day. ❤️

Photo credit for the last and second-to-last photo: my brother's 11-year-old kid Rowan. Thanks kid!

Towards something that almost looks like a blog

I withdrew from social media at the start of that whole global pandemic thing. Initially it was to bring my anxiety under control, and turned out to be the best possible thing I could have done for my well-being.

On the other hand, I came to miss having a place to dump things that may or may not be of value to someone somewhere. That's what this is!

I also wanted a little place that was mine -- hosted on servers I pay for, with software I control. The current wave of deplatforming should terrify anyone that has content hosted by someone else. I like cars, cats, and writing Python code. It's unlikely I'll ever become a target for any of that, but that's probably what all those people thought who were posting nudity on that site that was 95% nudity, and we all know how that one worked out.

I have a site. Actually I have another site as well. Those sites do what they do, and one of them gets non-trivial amounts of traffic doing what it does. I did not want to repurpose those. They might get updated with the things they should be updated with, but sometimes a thing should be allowed to be the thing that it is.

So here it is, something resembling a blog. I'll be migrating a bunch of stuff from my Markdown diary files. I have a lot of these, which I gathered in the hope of getting them into a static site generator some day. They didn't end up going into a static site generator, because I was overthinking the solution (and I'll probably post about that soon).

I picked the name "Exhaust" because this is a bit of a vent. Not "vent" in the sense that makes so much discourse ugly, but a place to dump the occasional thought, a thing that has happened to me, a picture, maybe the occasional story and anything else that crosses my mind. And I can do that without caring how many likes or shares it gets! As Todd Snider put it,

I might share some of my opinions with you over the course of the evening. I'm not gonna share them with you 'cause I think they're smart, or 'cause I think you need to know 'em; I'm gonna share 'em with you because they rhyme.