Sunday, 12 July 2009

Wearing My Geek Hat

I love eBay. I scored something that I think is awesomely cool but most everyone else thinks I'm a geek. Bothered much? See:

Yes folks, that is an original British Rail coat. I'm guessing it was for platform staff, but I know nothing about it other than it appears to have never been worn. If anyone can tell me the era or which department it was issued to, I would be delighted.
Look at the buttons! Squee!

I was looking around the house today, and I realised I have some pretty oddly varied stuff, and I thought I'd ramble a bit about them, because I have no exciting knitting to show you. I have these:

which are brass plates off electric motors, manufactured by long-defunct companies. I just love them. Nowadays there would be a plastic printed label, or laser-etched or something equally dull. These are (I guess) cast, in brass, then have the relevant data stamped into them, probably by hand. I seem to have a thing for industrial heritage, particularly the little details. I have no desire for a Deltic cab in the garden, but a big electrical insulator? Would love one. I get all excited about things like those plates, old adverts (I have a great one from the CEGB in the 1960's) or anything with gauges on it. Maybe it was growing up in an industrial town (Stoke-on-Trent) that did it, with it's distinctive skyline of bottle kilns and pitheads, or maybe being the daughter of an engineer has had an effect. Don't get me wrong, I'm a country girl, but the sight of a piece of really fine Victorian engineering can turn me into a gibbering, squeeing mass. Don't get me started on the Forth Rail Bridge. I adore that thing.

I also seem to have a thing for old gardening books. I just can't resist when I see them in charity shops. I blame my Mum, who gave me some of my Granny's old books. I really can't explain this one, except they're often charming, with illustrations rather than lots of photos, and often written in a highly entertaining, rather dictatorial style. And of course, a lot of the information is still valid, though you do have to watch the taxonomy as that does change.

Of course, they also look nice on a shelf :-)

That's all for now, it's been a very quiet weekend other than some plumbing issues (I spent half of Saturday either on the floor or up a ladder, balancing a torch for the plumber so he could see what he was doing...) and watching the German Grand Prix, which I was pleased to see Mark Webber win. He seems a nice chap (though I wish he'd shut up about the cricket!) and also wins major cuteness points :-)

Oh and Granny has managed to land herself a hospital stay, after getting up early in the morning, when she's under strict instructions to stay in bed until my Uncle is up to help her, and falling over in the bedroom. Apparently no harm done, just some bumps and bruises and damaged pride. She is 94 so she really should know better, but you try telling her :-)


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