london as it could be

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Robert William Thomson was born on July 16th 1822

The names of the great Scottish inventors roll easily off the tongue; John Logie Baird,Alexander Graham Bell, Charles Macintosh, and John Dunlop inventor of the pneumatic tyre, or should that read re-inventor of the pneumatic tyre?

Indeed it should read re-inventor; the pneumatic tyre was in fact patented by one of Scotland’s most prolific, but now largely forgotten, inventors, Robert William Thomson on 10 December 1845, some 43 years before John Dunlop’s re-invention. Thomson’s “Aerial Wheels” were subsequently demonstrated in Regents Park London in 1847 and proved to all present that they could both reduce noise and improve passenger comfort. 

Robert was born in Stonehaven, the was the son of a local woollen mill owner and was the eleventh of twelve children. Originally destined for the ministry, he apparently had great difficulty coming to terms with Latin,so refused his family’s wishes. 

Instead, at age 14, Thomson was shipped to an uncle in the United States, where he served an apprenticeship with a merchant. Upon his return to Scotland, Thomson immersed himself in science, learning all he could about chemistry, electricity and astronomy, and soon began improving the design of mechanical devices in the family’s household. After serving an engineering apprenticeship, Thomson found work as a civil engineer and soon after designed a method of detonating explosive charges via electricity, this saved thousands of lives in the coal mining industry alone.
On December 10, 1845, at the age of 23, Thomson was granted a British patent for the very first pneumatic tyre, a device he called the “Aerial Wheel.” Intended for use on carriages (because bicycles had not yet been popularized), the Aerial Wheel used a rubberized fabric tube filled with pressurized air and encased in a thick leather outer skin. This leather “tire” was bolted to the rim, and the tread section was then stitched to the tyre’s sidewalls. By period accounts, Aerial Wheels yielded a much improved ride compared to conventional solid wheels, and even proved durable enough to accumulate more than 1,200 miles before wearing out. The following year Thomson applied for and received a French patent for his pneumatic tyre, and in 1847 he was granted a U.S. patent for his design.

Though revolutionary, Thomson’s Aerial Wheels were never commercially successful. The cost of the rubber needed for construction of the wheel’s pneumatic bladder priced the product beyond the means of most, and the improvement in ride quality failed to justify the expense in the eyes of the public.
It wasn’t until 1888 that another Scottish inventor, veterinarian John Boyd Dunlop, improved on Thomson’s design to create a pneumatic tire for bicycles, as a means of preventing the headaches suffered by his son when riding his bicycle on bumpy roads. In 1888, Dunlop was given his own patent for the improved pneumatic tyre, but two years later, this was rescinded due to its conflict with Thomson’s Aerial Wheel. Undeterred, Dunlop continued his work on the pneumatic tyre, and by 1890 was mass-producing tyres for bicycles at a factory in Belfast.

A woman let her dog shit on the airport floor. So I shit on her plans.

While walking to my gate at LAX, I noticed a woman whose dog was in the middle of doing its business. The woman was loudly face-timing with her back to the dog, so I assumed she didn’t notice. That was likely the thought shared by the gentleman who tried to get her attention.

“Excuse me, miss?” he said, in a polite tone. The woman glared at him. “Your dog,” he sheepishly continued, pointing to the mid-poop pup.

The woman rolled her eyes and went back to face time as the man slinked away, seemingly embarrassed.

“Some people,” she bellowed to her face-time companion with no hint of irony, “are just so damned rude.”

When her dog finished, the woman started walking away, leaving everything right on the airport floor. Another woman tried to stop her.

“You’re not going to clean that up?” she asked, as shocked as the rest of us were.

“They have people for that,” the offender replied, disappearing into the crowd, as much as someone yelling into their phone can disappear into a crowd.

I stood near the pile and warned people to walk around it while someone else got a maintenance worker’s attention. No one said anything – we were so shocked that anyone could be that horrible.

When I got to my gate, the woman was there, too. Great – we were both going to Tokyo. When I travel abroad, I get embarrassed by other Americans doing things one hundred times less embarrassing than leaving animal feces on the floor of an airport. To make it worse, her dog was now barking at everyone who walked by.

I have nothing against people flying with their dogs, I do it often. But it is a privilege I take seriously. My dog is well-trained and behaves better than most people. He certainly behaves better than that a**hole.

Speaking of a**holes, there is a pet relief area inside LAX, past security, just two gates away from where The Party Pooper let her dog go to town. It didn’t matter - she was the type of person to litter three feet from an empty garbage can.

While her dog barked at the world, the woman had moved from face-timing with no headphones to listening to music with no headphones. I don’t like to throw around the word “sociopath” but I don’t know how else I could explain just how selfish and terrible of a person she was. I’d bet her car was somewhere in long-term parking, parked across three spots with paint on the bumper from the child’s bike she hit without leaving a note.

Everyone else tried to ignore her, sitting as far away from her as they could. I am not everyone else.

I sat down right next to the horrible woman. “Are you going to London on business?” I said.

“I’m going to Tokyo,” she responded gruffly, annoyed that I interrupted her DJing.

“Oh, I said. Then you better hurry. That flight got moved to gate 53C. This is the flight to London.”

I figured I could give her a little moment of panic as payback for how terribly she was treating everyone. I didn’t predict what would happen next. She grabbed her bags and her dog in a huff, and stormed out of the gate without even checking. She was so self-involved, she didn’t notice that the monitor at our gate still said Tokyo and almost everyone at the gate was Japanese.

Based on her actions, she believed me that the flight had been moved, so she’s also an asshole for not thanking me. “Some people,” I thought as I watched her rush away from the gate without stopping her, “are just so damned rude.”

The flight to Tokyo was at gate 69A, so the 53 gates were on the other side of the next terminal. And I felt guilty knowing she probably berated some poor clerk who had to explain to her that there was no gate 53C.

I don’t know if she made it back to this flight before we took off or not, but I didn’t see her board and I don’t hear her dog. Her missing her flight was not my original intention, but it would be a fine punishment for her being so rude to everyone and making a low-paid stranger clean feces off the floor. What makes me wonder if I went too far is the knowledge that Delta only has one flight to Tokyo each day. Whoops.

Maybe she can re-book on another airline. I hear they have people for that.

anonymous asked:

would you ever draw camila? like with lil nina?

camila loves her happy lil girl more than anything

FBG advertising Fallen London: “Discover a dark and hilarious Gothic underworld where all your actions have consequences. And did we mention it’s free?” “Welcome, delicious friend.”

FBG advertising Sunless Sea: “Lose your mind. Eat your crew. Die.” “Experience cannibalism on the go”

If it continues to escalate, I can only imagine what it’ll be for Sunless Skies.

I know a lot of my followers are American and maybe don’t know what’s going on with Scotland/Brexit/independence referendums, and I’m really fucking mad about it, so I wanted to make this post.

Theresa May, the UK Prime Minister, has told us we aren’t allowed to have another Independence Referendum before 2019. Scotland’s first minister, Nicola Sturgeon, had been meeting with the PM to try and negotiate a suitable time for us to take another vote on Independence, and she (along with most Scots I would think, I know I am) is shocked that the PM has turned around and said no to a vote before 2019.

Why do Scotland want another Independence Referendum? We want one because Scotland voted to REMAIN in the EU. We don’t want to leave, and if we stay a part of the UK we will be forced to leave the EU. We don’t want this to happen, we’d rather be a part of the EU than be joined with England any longer. That’s the shortest way to say it, EU > UK.

Why 2019? Nicola Sturgeon and other members of the SNP (Scottish National Party, the party that holds the most chairs in Scotland) have been thinking about making autumn 2019 a good time to hold another referendum. This means, if we chose to leave the UK, Brexit wouldn’t be in full effect yet and we could happily stay in the EU. It’s also far enough away to give everyone a good amount of time to campaign, and think about how they want to vote.

Why has Theresa May said no to 2019? May has said no because she wants to give Scotland an ultimatum. Basically by saying no to 2019 she’s telling us, sure, you can have another vote after that time all you want, but you can’t have it before the whole UK is already out of Brexit. She’s done this because she thinks that us Scots should give Brexit a chance and see what it’s like before we go leaving the UK. It also means Scotland would have to go through the hassle of joining the EU again, and she thinks this will deter us from voting for Independence.

Why is all of this a problem, and y u so mad about it Moody? Well, friends, lemme tell you a thing. First of all Theresa May is the leader of the Conservative Party, a party which out of 59 available House of Commons seats in Scotland, only hold 1. They hold 1 seat. And they’re dictating to us when we can and cannot hold a vote. Forget that she’s the PM for a second. Think about that. 1 out of 59 seats in Scotland, and she’s telling us how to run our country and thinks she understands what the Scottish people want? No.

Secondly, she’s made this decision before she even hears what the SNP have to say on the matter. The SNP are holding a meeting on Wednesday (from me posting this, next week) to talk about another referendum. May doesn’t even know what the SNP fully want to do yet because they haven’t had their meeting yet, and without hearing the SNPs general opinion post-meeting, she has said no. Jumping the gun a bit, huh?

Thirdly, it’s not up to her, it’s up to the Scottish people. I mean sure, she’s the PM, she’s said no to 2019, that was her decision. But what exactly is that achieving? Other than making it harder for Scotland to join back with the EU after we leave the UK. Nothing. She just doesn’t want to deal with Brexit and Scotland leaving the UK at the same time. Learn to multitask, PM, or hand your job over to someone who can.

Scotland want independence because we are sick and tired of having to follow everything England does. The entirety of Scotland voting one way could be overruled by the entirety of London. Just London, one city. We have less say than one English city. We’re sick of this bullshit. Did you know that England’s nuclear weapons program, Trident, is located in Scotland? That’s right, just in case someone decides to bomb us to get rid of our weapons, they put them in Scotland so they’d bomb us instead of England. Tough shit on you if we get our independence, looks like you’ll be having to deal with your own nuclear weapons from now on. Get that shit away from us.

I am angry because my country doesn’t have a say in its own future, I am angry because the English government that rules over us doesn’t give a crap about us, I am angry because we are treated as worthless ‘lesser Englishmen’, when our culture and people are entirely different to England’s. I am angry because I’m tired of the English government shitting all over my country. Fuck you, we want Independence, and delaying it won’t stop it from happening.

thesun.co.uk
One Direction may reunite to charity single for victims of London tower block
ONE Direction could have a mini-reunion after Simon Cowell asked all of the band to sing on his charity single for the Grenfell Tower disaster. Liam Payne and Louis Tomlinson were officially confir…

ONE Direction could have a mini-reunion after Simon Cowell asked all of the band to sing on his charity single for the Grenfell Tower disaster.

Liam Payne and Louis Tomlinson were officially confirmed to be recording lines for the celeb cover of Bridge Over Troubled Water.

Harry Styles and Niall Horan are trying to free up their schedules to take part.

The group have been on a break since early 2016, with all four members recently embarking on solo careers.

Yesterday, several music stars started the three-day recording of the record, with Paloma Faith, Craig David and James Blunt all spotted entering the West London recording studio.

More names pledged their support for the track overnight including Rita Ora, Robbie Williams, Leona Lewis and Gareth Malone.

Lily Allen, Skepta, Stormzy, James Arthur and others have already been confirmed.

A source said: “If all four [One Direction] came on board, it would be as solo acts as Liam has to record in the US.”

It comes after Paloma Faith blasted the Government for not doing enough to help victims.

The singer, who visited the devastating scene hours after the blaze took hold, said: “I don’t think £5million even touches the side.”

There’s a reason complete strangers keep mistaking Sherlock and John for a couple.

Sherlock, being Sherlock, always notices it when people are checking John out. He dislikes it. It makes him feel…panicked. However, John disapproves of him making rude deductions at unsuspecting strangers, so Sherlock has to find a subtler way to deal with such outrageous affronts.

Sherlock leans in close to talk to John, touches his arm to get his attention, smiles at him in a smitten way, steals food off his plate: all those behaviours he has observed in romantic couples. It is excellent; The dull cretins oogling his John invariably sighs in defeat (”Why are all the good ones taken and/or gay?”) and refrains from making any further moves. 

John never notices. After all, Sherlock acts like this all the time, and John is remarkably unobservant.

Then Sherlock and John actually get together, and Sherlock comes to the pleasant realisation that it is no longer necessary for him to be subtle. So the next time a young barista twirls her hair and draws an anatomically-incorrect heart on John’s coffee cup, Sherlock wraps a possessive arm around John, presses a kiss to his hair, and glares at the offending barista over John’s head. 

John turned around, smiling.

“What was that for?”

“You’re very attractive,” Sherlock said primly, all innocence.

John chuckled and slipped his hand into Sherlock’s, and they walked out of the cafe sipping their drinks.

“You know,” sip, “you react to competition like a twelve year old girl.”

Sherlock’s coffee burnt his tongue. He spit it out, spluttering. 

“What are you talking about?”

“I mean this,” John demonstrated by stroking a hand down Sherlock’s arm exaggeratedly, “and this,” he leans up to breathe heavily into Sherlock’s ear.

“I thought you didn’t notice.”

“Yeah, not at first. But then that time at the Dancing Dragon you stole all the broccoli off my plate while glaring aggressively at the woman at the counter. And you don’t even like broccoli.”

Sherlock frowned heavily, reading to commence the world’s greatest sulk. But John was still talking.

“That’s when I realised,” John stopped and turned to face Sherlock fully, “that you wouldn’t really mind if I just-” 

John put his free hand on Sherlock’s shoulder and snogged him full on the mouth, right there on the busy pavement. Morning commuters swerved to avoid the two of them, stoically ignoring them in that fine London tradition. He could hold up the traffic for once, Sherlock thought dizzily. Mycroft did it all the time.

“Anyway,” said John, clearing his throat and rolling back on his heels. “Just wanted you to know. Don’t get your knickers in a twist. You don’t have any competition. But if you still feel like snogging me in odd places, that’s fine with me.”

“At crime scenes?”

“Not at crime scenes.”

“But you just said-”

“Got to draw the line somewhere, Sherlock.”

~end~


If you fancy you could check out my blog or my AO3. Ta.

@love-in-mind-palace @addignisherlock @johnlock-empire @simpleanddestructivechemistry @consultingeastwind @inneisme

The Flat
  • Sirius bought it in 7th year.
  • He was walking down a street in muggle London, smoking a cigarette, not really paying attention to where he was going or why. 
  • Then he saw it.
  • And he had to have it.
  • It was small, dusty, old and needed some work done, but damn did Sirius love that flat.
  • I had four bedrooms, a kitchen and dining room area with a living space coming off the end and two and half small bathrooms (when I say half, one was just a toilet and a sink).
  • It had these huge windows along just one wall. They were so big you could stand on the window sill at the bottom and just press your whole body against the glass, staring down onto the street below.
  • The house had a bright red door with small flecks of paint coming off it. 
  • The flat itself was on the second floor of the building, but even from the ground, staring at those huge windows and the For Sale sign, Sirius knew he wanted it bad. 
  • So he bought it two weeks later.
  • He didn’t tell anyone about it at first, he wanted it to be a surprise for when they left school.
  • But Sirius Black is terrible at keeping secrets, especially from his best friends and especially when he was excited.
  • So, one rainy weekend he took them all down to muggle London for a special trip.
  • ‘Sirius what is this all about. it’s cold.’ ‘Be quiet Wormy I need to show you something.’
  • ‘Sirius we have been walking for hours, please, my feet are tired.’ ‘James shut the hell up, we got off the bus thirty seconds ago.’
  • They rounded the corner, walked a few meters until Sirius was standing in front of the house, his arms spread wide and a huge grin on his face, like he was a small child showing his mother his latest drawing.
  • ‘Well, what do you think?’
  • ‘I think it’s raining and you have stopped in the middle of the street for no reason.’
  • ‘Fuck off Moony, I mean the house.’
  • ‘What? This house?’
  • ‘Yes this house you wanker, it’s mine.’
  • Peter, James and Remus all just stare.
  • ‘You bought a house…’
    Sirius dropped his arms.
  •  ‘Well no.. I bought a flat, second floor. I thought we could all live here. When we leave school…Together.’
  • Silence.James, never one for silences, or being able to handle the look of fear and apprehension on Sirius’ face, breaks into a smile.
  • ‘For real Pads?’
  • ‘Yeah.. for real..’
  • James clapped Peter on the back, still grinning. Peter smiles too. Then James runs up and hugs Sirius, very briefly and before the poor boy can respond, James has broken away and is running up to the red door, unlocking and sprinting inside, bounding up the stairs. A few seconds later he is seen in one of the enormous windows, still grinning as he jumps about motioning for the others to join him.
  • Peter laughs before running in after James. Remus remains standing and staring.
  • ‘You want me to move in with you?’
  • Sirius blushes.
  • ‘Probably should have made asking you more romantic Moony.. but I figured having us all here would be cute as well. But yeah, I want you to move in with me. And James. And Peter. I basically want you to move into Gryffindor Dormitory 2.0, only this time we get to share a bed.’
  • Remus is silent.
  • Sirius is worried.
  • ‘You don’t have to Rem. Maybe this is too fast. You can say no…’
  • ‘I love you, Sirius’
  • ‘I love you too, Moony.’
  • ‘But I get the left side of the bed.’
  • Sirius lets out a bark like laugh.
  • ‘Fine, but I’m choosing the sheets, your taste sucks ass.’
  • Moving into the London flat was all they could talk about for the next few months.
  • Sirius had never asked them to pay any rent, he had more than enough money after his Uncle had passed away and figured it was the least he could do.
  • But James had downright refused to let his friend pay for him, insisting he would split the rent 50/50 every month, no matter what protests Sirius put up.
  • Remus wanted to pay too, but Sirius didn’t even bother listening to that. Remus didn’t have the money to do it, not that Sirius cared, and he would always say, ‘Remus, we are going to be sharing a bed, theirs not really anything for you to pay for. Plus, you can get me a really cool birthday present to make up for it.’ Remus got him a motorbike that year.
  • A few weeks before the end of school, just when the boys had finished there exams, and reality had started to sink in, Sirius heard that Marlene’s parents hadn’t taken the whole ‘her dating Dorcas’ thing so well, and were no longer speaking to her. So the next day he went up to her, pulled her aside and told her that there was a bedroom waiting in a small flat in London that he was sure her and Dorcas would enjoy.
  • He’d never seen Marlene cry before that day.
  • A week later James walked into the dormitory, sweaty and gross from Quidditch practice, panting as he explained that he was in love with Lily Evans.
  • ‘Yeah no shit Potter, I heard you two last night.’
  • Sirius got a pillow thrown at his head. 
  • Then James explained that he was going to ask Lily to move in with him after they left school. That he wanted her in his life and in the flat. If Sirius was okay with that.
  • Sirius started laughing. James was confused.
  • ‘Prongs, you are the most oblivious boy I have ever met. Lily and I have been waiting for you to ask her to move in for the past two months.’
  • Sirius got another pillow thrown at his head. Then James ran off to go find Lily.
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Been working on this for a while ever since I made friends with phandom peeps who weren’t from London.  When we met up I took them on “Dan and Phil tour” of London as we were shopping in the area and I knew the areas pretty well. They really enjoyed it so I decided to sit down and properly map out some routes for both of the London DITL’s so that other people in the phandom could enjoy it. I included all of the stops in the videos bar ones near their flat (obviously). 

Tour number 1 is from the first London DITL video

It’s taken me AGES to put this one together so please don’t steal the images (happy for people to reblog of course), and I am now working on the Festive DITL route which will probably take a week or two.

If you do go on it, please let me know if you enjoyed it and if the route is easy to follow (and remember to take lots of photos at each stop). 

There was one time on the tube in London- the underground- and there was a girl sitting opposite me and I could tell if I stare- if I looked at her, she was gonna know who I was.. so I just kinda.. I stayed.. I kept my head down like that and then I was getting off.. thank God I was getting off coz my anxiety levels were just about to go through the roof as I was sitting there.. yeah I was on my own.. yeah and I was on the edge of the seat and I was just getting out the door just here and kinda got up and swung my body around the pole like that to get out the door and all I heard was OH MY GOD NIALL and just as I was getting off, I was like WHOA-OH GOD and then I get out, the doors closed really quick before she could get off..

Tunnel Warfare 

Under enemy lines.

Since ancient times, armies have used mining and tunneling as a way of besieging their enemies. In classical antiquity, armies dug tunnels under enemy walls, and then set fire to timber in the tunnel, causing the shaft to collapse and with it enemy wall. Armies came up with increasingly ingenious ways to use tunnels, or to fight back against them. In 285, Sassanid Persians used poison gas to kill Roman engineers tunneling under their walls. In medieval times, gunpowder became the weapon of choice to place under enemy lines, blowing them sky-high.

The Western Front of World War I was essentially a medieval siege battle on a massive scale, and thus tunnel warfare surfaced again in history. Digging was a way of getting around the strategic impasse of trench-fighting. From the very beginning, the armies employed former miners in crude operations, digging under enemy lines, placing TNT in the mine-shafts, and then blowing up enemy trenches from below. Or tunnels could dig secret entrances into No-Man’s Land or enemy trenches, allowing soldiers to cross into enemy territory safely.

How it worked.

By 1917 tunnel warfare had become a complex and sophisticated operation. Britain recruited professional coal miners from Wales and Australia, as well as the “clay kickers” who had designed the London underground. Germany and France employed miners of their own, each side mining under enemy lines, or searching and destroying the underground tunnels of their enemies.

French sappers listen for vibrations that would detect enemy German diggers.

The most effective case ever was on June 7, 1917, when the British began the Battle of Messines by detonating 19 mines, with over 1 million tons of explosives, under German lines. The noise could be heard in London, 140 miles away. It was the loudest noise produced by humans in history up to that point, and the deadliest non-nuclear explosion of all time.

One of 19 mines goes up at Messines, June 7 1917.

Tunnel warfare was a deadly business. It came, first of all, with all the natural risks of mining. Shafts could collapse suddenly, burying sappers alive. In the clay soil of Belgium, where the water table was very high, mines flooded almost instantly, and soldiers spent laborious hours pumping out water. Complicated breathing apparatuses might be necessary for when oxygen ran out. Furthermore, sappers worked underground with massive quantities of dynamite. An accidental spark here or there and thousands of tons of TNT could blow up.

A sawn-off Lee Enfield rifle for underground fighting.

Even more risks came from the enemy. When one side mined, the other side dug counter-mines. Sappers listened for vibrations from underground, and if they heard the enemy digging, they could rig another tunnel to blow in the enemy excavation. Or, like the ancient Persians, they could find the enemy sap and siphon in gas. And sometimes the methods of war underground were truly medieval. Sometimes enemy sappers ran into each other underground, suddenly bursting through an underground wall. In these cases, nightmarish subterranean conflicts took place in the pitch dark, as man killed each other with knuckle-dusters, knives, and sawn-off bolt-action rifles.

A crater formed by one mine at Messines Ridge.

When Styles returned to L.A., an idea landed. The idea was: Get out of Dodge. Styles called his manager, Jeffrey Azoff, and explained he wanted to finish the album outside London or L.A., a place where the band could focus and coalesce. Four days after returning from the movie, they were on their way to Port Antonio on Jamaica’s remote north coast. At Geejam, Styles and his entire band were able to live together, turning the studio compound into something like a Caribbean version of Big Pink. They occupied a two-story villa filled with instruments, hung out at the tree-house-like Bush Bar, and had access to the gorgeous studio on-site. Many mornings began with a swim in the deserted cove just down the hill. Life in Jamaica was 10 percent beach party and 90 percent musical expedition. It was the perfect rite of passage for a musician looking to explode the past and launch a future. The anxiety of what’s next slipped away. Layers of feeling emerged that had never made it past One Direction’s group songwriting sessions, often with pop craftsmen who polished the songs after Styles had left.