There’s something symbolic and, indeed, deeply personal about the image illustrating this week’s Weekly Wrap, my five-year old photograph titled To boldly go….
A small boat heads out into the fog of San Francisco Bay on 10 December 2010. Even though it’s probably just crossing the bay to Marin County, or stopping near Alcatraz Island for a spot of fishing, it looks like there’s a vast and dangerous journey ahead.
It continues to be one of my personal favourites.
I’ve used this photo before, to illustrate Weekly Wrap 267: Chaos, then embracing the change, on 19 July 2015.
But I also used it four years earlier, on 24 January 2011, to illustrate Accommodation: into the unknown. I’d had to leave Enmore with no clear plan. I was worried. The image reflected my mood.
Less than a fortnight after that post, three strong men and a truck took away all my household possessions and office furniture, and put it into storage.
I took just two suitcases of clothing and my most important tools and documents, and headed to the Blue Mountains to stay at Bunjaree Cottages for “a few weeks”. I had a month of work-related travel coming up, I said, and I’d sort out my accommodation when I got back.
Five years later, I’m still at Bunjaree Cottages.
And it’s still temporary.
Continue reading ““To boldly go…” and the Cycle of Time”
While the superpowers were busy spending billions on a Space Race that would ultimately lead to a series of blurry television pictures, there was another, far more real, Space Age unfolding. In my head.
As B Smith said, in the 1960s there were snap-together rockets in Kellogg’s breakfast cereal boxes, including reasonably detailed models of the actual Apollo spacecraft, some of the more speculative NASA designs — even, as this close-up photo shows, vehicles from Thunderbirds and Captain Scarlet and the Mysterons.
The real imagined future of US and Soviet space exploration blurred with the imaginary imagined future of Gerry Anderson to create, in my mind at least, a gloriously unfolding set of possibilities.
My favourite breakfast cereal toy of all was the Kellogg’s Molab, pictured above — although I’m pretty sure mine was blue. Apparently it’s loosely based on NASA concepts for a manned MObile LABoratory for cruising the Lunar surface, much like this book cover illustration. General Motors even built a mock-up. However once the Moon Landings had happened, the follow-up programmes to Apollo were killed off.
I kept losing my Molab’s wheels. Probably because I didn’t glue in the axle pins. But that didn’t matter. I re-imagined it as a spacecraft. The wheel mounts became fold-down exit ramps for rapid troop deployment.
But my favourite space-related TV series from that era was Fireball XL5. May I recommend the opening and closing titles? Or perhaps this version by Bob Downe.
[Photo: Kellogg’s Molab cereal packet premium image thanks to Wotan of the Moonbase Central blog. If you grew up during the Space Age, you’ll lose yourself there for hours.]
I’ve avoided saying this, because there was enough to cope with last month and I was indulging in wishful thinking. But the time has come to say it. Apollo has disappeared. I don’t think he’ll be seen again. Good luck, my feline friend.
When I bumped out of the Enmore house and just before I left for a trip to the US, I took Apollo to stay with Googler Anthony Baxter. Alas, on his first night there, Apollo found a way to escape — no doubt spooked by the strange environment including three other cats. He hasn’t been seen since. The Baxter residence was far enough from the Enmore house to be well outside his territory, so I don’t think he’ll have found his way to familiar ground. If he had done, we’d have heard by now.
Given that Artemis’ life ended only a month beforehand, I was suppressing the emotions of this second loss. No longer. It seems appropriate to be writing this at Tea Tree Cottage while a night-time thunderstorm rages outside, the rain sweeping through the scrub.
[Photo: Apollo, photographed on 16 November 2008.]
My accommodation for the next couple of weeks at least is sorted. Finally. The Blue Mountains then San Francisco. However a temporary home for Apollo (pictured) has yet to be finalised.
The plan I outlined a week ago seems to be coming together even better than expected.
I bump out of the house in Enmore, Sydney, on Thursday 3 February 2011. I’ll then spend a couple of days in a hotel so I can tidy up loose ends in Sydney before spending a week at Wentworth Falls in the Blue Mountains — because it turns out that an industry colleague and his wife bought the Bunjaree Cottages there and need someone to do a spot of caretaking and webby work.
And after that I’m off to San Francisco for the RSA Conference.
I don’t know exactly what I’m doing after that, but at least I’ll have time to think about it.
Apollo, meanwhile, needs to be stashed somewhere. I’ve got a couple of local options already, but if you feel the urge to have an attention-demanding cat for a few weeks do let me know.
[Photo: Apollo, photographed in 2004.]
Here are the web links I’ve found for 10 August 2009 and some days beforehand, posted automatically, kinda.
- Teens Don’t Tweet… Or Do They? | apophenia: Mashable reported some new statistics on Twitter usage with the headline “Teens Don’t Tweet”;. This article debunks that idiocy.
- Why I believe in the link economy | MediaFile: Chris Ahearn, who’s President, Media at Thomson Reuters, provides an interesting counterpoint to Associated Press’ aggressive anti-linking views.
- What’s a Big City Without a Newspaper? | NYTimes.com: This feature starts off with a long nostalgic waffle about newspapers, but towards the end it has some excellent points about how journalism may adapt to the new world.
- Hunter S Thompson Motivational Posters | Sloshspot Blog: Yes, the world needs Hunter S Thompson motivational posters. It truly does.
- The Communications Market 2009 (August) | Ofcom: The UK communications regulatory authority’s latest industry statistics.
- TVS – Television Sydney: Community TV station TVS has a website — which is nothing new, except that I just discovered that their program are streamed live as well as being broadcast on UHF analog.
- eCrime Symposium panel discussion | Risky Business: One of the panel discussions from last week’s eCrime Symposium in Sydney, featuring: Rachel Dixon, who’s a technology executive for online media group Viocorp, as well as being the deputy chair of consumer group CHOICE; Phil Argy, head of the Technology Dispute Centre, and Sean Richmond from Sophos. The panel was hosted by Nigel Phair, and there’s a question from me.
- Mission control | SomaFM: Apollo mission radio feeds from NASA mixed with ambient electronica. Suitably excellent listening.
- Rupert and the death of hubris – Alan Kohler | Business Spectator: A solid analysis of Rupert Murdoch’s announcement that News Corporation will pull its content behind paywalls.
- Watch the Ebb and Flow of Melbourne Trains | FlowingData: From Australian data visualisation team Flink Labs, a fascinating overview of Melbourne’s railway network in action.
- Internet Filter Plan From Stephen Conroy Won’t Work: DPP | theage.com.au: Earlier this week, the NSW Director of Public Prosecutions, Nicholas Cowdery QC, was rather sceptical of the Rudd government’s plans to “filter” the Internet.
- Canberra Players League’s All Star Game 2009 | Dnosauria: Not bookmarked because I’m interested in basketball, but because Dean trialled using Livestream.com to put the video online. Live. Seems it’s a batter choice than Ustream, which is what I’d been using until now. I may check it out.
As mentioned in my previous post, I’m having a slow day thanks to the side effects of yesterday’s batch of vaccinations. Nevertheless, here’s a video, recorded around 7.15am.
A video with Gnaomi and a cat? What a bonus!