Wednesday, 30 December 2009

Holding onto sanity

Writing essays, or attempting to, around the Christmas period is not fun in the slightest, however it needs to be done :(
Thankfully, as usual, some music is helping me stay relatively sane and focused. Currently listening to Late Night Tales a very nice collection of songs picked by Snow Patrol, check it out.

Anyways back to the books.

Wednesday, 23 December 2009

Dixons advertising fail

I have a feeling someone in the marketing department at Dixons should be looking for a new job...

Apparently its supposed to be "clever" in the same way as "its always in the last place you look", however to me, and I'm guessing most people that don't try to find philosophy within advertising slogans, it just reminds me of the poor service I've had from the Dixons/Currys/PC World collective

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Monday, 14 December 2009

The Alaska Mountain Wilderness Classic Adventure Race.... extreme!

I was having a quick look at hrxxl, a German lightweight hikers blog, and came across an interview with Andrew Shulkra a full time outdoor adventurer who since 2002 has trekked over 23,000 miles. Its an interesting article and well worth the read, discussing Andrews career so far, how he has achieved it and what the future holds for him. However, what really caught my attention was the video posted for the Alaska Mountain Wilderness Classic Adventure Race (below.)

The race must be one of only a few left that have next to no rules on the method of travel, organisers that openly admit no responsibility for you and a required kit list of only two items (a satellite phone and a inflatable raft) for a race that will last at least three days. Pretty crazy!

Its pretty incredible to see the type of rivers they their tiny used inflatable rafts for, it is truly a wild race. Andrew has written an article that can be read at, and it is definitely worth the read, if not for the lovely looking feet near the bottom of the page.

My feet have ended up in that state if not worse, and it is really pretty grim. I'm not surprised they didn't stop too often, as with feet like that getting going again is possibly the worst feeling ever.

Saturday, 12 December 2009

Ultralight, Ultracheap 4oz insulated "jacket"

Send that expensive down vest back to the shop, you can be warm on the hills for less than the cost of a pint (presuming you already have a wind shirt.)

Novel idea or what? It would be perfect for a mountain marathon, you could even scrap it after the night camp if you were super weight conscious. A great example of function over form.

Seen on OM. Courtesy of Chris Napton

Friday, 11 December 2009

Like A Smile On A Monday - Mixtape

In between cramming and making my eyes square I have been throwing a new mix-tape together and it is now ready for the world to critique, complete with covers. I am far happier with this concoction of music, which may in part be due to using different software to mix the tracks, but most probably has a lot to do with abandoning a distinct topic, which seriously hampered the cohesion of Deep clouds above.

Stepping in at just over 41 minutes the mix-tape is certainly worth a gander, hopefully you will enjoy it as much as I do!

P.S If you give it a listen, please drop us a comment, good or bad.

Wednesday, 9 December 2009

Chrimbo Presents..... The horror the horror

Finding it hard to find the perfect pressie? Don't sweat it!

If you're like me, Chrimbo shopping takes forever, however, at least now I can do it while staring at a screen and not having to interact with real people. I like to find something rather unique that most people won't have seen and is also pretty cool, well in my eyes anyways, while still being of some use. This can be very time consuming, but finding something perfect is a great feeling. Below are a couple of links to help you find some pretty cool stuff.

First up is Magma Books. Obviously they sell books, but I'm yet to buy one from them. The reason I list them is because of the cool range of design related products they carry, certainly some of the finest caps (below) prints and other genuinely novel creations.

Coolest headgear ever?

Second in the list is Folksy an online catalog of pretty cool handmade crafts. Its hard not to look through the pages and want to buy something. There are some great little items that seem quite competitively priced. You can also be happy in the knowledge that your money is supporting the artists, and going direct into their pockets (well except possibly the host site and paypal.) Also on the site is a section of instructions for anybody that would like to get creative.

I neeeed this in my life!

Urban Outfitters is a high street clothing store and I assume is quite well known for stocking rather quirky items, items which I for one always appreciate. The realisation of simple play on words is always quite amusing.

I had a 12 gauge (shot) forced on me

Lazy Oaf sell some pretty cool stuff.

Thats the black tie function sorted.

Last but not least is To dry for. They don't sell overly cool items, tea towels, however they certainly make them pleasing to the eye.

Unfortunately none of the above sites has bribed me for these links, however I am certainly open to such things.

Well hopefully no one I'm buying for reads this blog or they might be finding their presents on the above sites!

Happy shopping everyone!

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Tuesday, 8 December 2009

Red mornings and frosty nights

Being up from six and revising when its still dark doesn't usually have too many good things going for it. However, this morning while busy cramming for a test later in the day I was rewarded with a magnificent looking sky of glorious pinks, oranges and blues.

Well the shepherds definitely got it right today, it was a rotten afternoon.

In other news, next time there's a frost out have a look at the roof of your car and check out the amazing icicle formations. Kewl!


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Tuesday, 1 December 2009

Watch and be inspired

Wow the post count for November is terrible, two, surely I wasn't that busy?

Anyways the next month is gonna get pretty hectic with exams, coursework and then this Christmas lark. However, no matter what I want to get up the Mournes to get a winter camp hopefully with some snow on the hills, and maybe even a BBQ if the rucksack will allow it.

A couple of vids for y'all to feast your eyes on. First up is a short film/montage of footage of an "illegal" cycle tour of Tibet. Some beautiful shots and also a rather interesting cultural aspect to it that many of these shorts don't delve into, well thats enough of my dribble.....

Journey as Destination - HD from Dave A on Vimeo.

Next up are a couple of trailers for upcoming films. Both touch on environmentalism and conservation to certain degrees, which I'm sure will be of interest to most people that stop by here. I won't be surprised if the only way to see these films in the near future will be by downloading them via torrents.

180° SOUTH from Mark Kalch on Vimeo.

P.S I should really give credit to Kevin Shannon of because its there for my stumbling onto the above vids.

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Friday, 13 November 2009

G4 Titanium Powerbook Repair / Respray

Throwing everything into a shoebox was slightly shortsighted.

Anybody that had been reading advntrgeez, before it died and I started here, may have known that I had decided to take apart and re-spray my Apple Titanium G4 Powerbook. Its a pretty random/geeky thing to do, but to replace the hinges (which were broken) the entire case needed to be dismantled, seals carefully broken and then reglued and reassembled. I thought I might aswell give it a new lick of a paint while I was at it as I wouldn't be able to dismantle it again after the glue set. Colorware paints laptops professionally, and I used their visualisation tool to decide on the colour scheme.

Colours decided it was time to source some literature and then acquire some paints etc. As you might expect theres plenty on the web about this sort of thing (I wouldn't have bothered trying to repair it if there wasn't) however regards paints its mostly brands availible in USA or at extortionate prices here in the U.K. In the end I used car paint from Halfords, thinking that if its good enough for a car it'll do a laptop!

The online guides leave very little out and give an easy to follow step by step procedure. However, I left out pretty much all the sanding, as after doing one surface I realised it would take me forever to sand them all, and also I didn't feel confident in not destroying any progress made by sanding heavily later in the project.

Starting point, looking pretty rough around the edges!

Case painting isn't overly difficult, but plenty of patience is required; half an hour between coats, weeks between primer and paint and the same again before clear can be applied. These time delays weren't really thought through by myself, and its another reason why sanding was avoided as it would have added another couple weeks onto the project.

looking back I can't believe it has taken me so long to complete it, at least 6 months after starting; it could have been completed within a month or so if I'd not been so pusillanimous about it all. However its nice to be now typing from my custom orangoutang powerbook!

A couple coats of brilliant orange.

2 coats of clear.

Decapitated but all the inards are still working (running the left screen), thankfully nothing had fried in the the 6 month interim.

And yes the screen is still working, time to break out the glue and finish reassembling once and for all!

The finished article, not too shabby, well except for a couple small areas due to user incompetence ;)

Links for painting/moddding cases.

Linear Case mods

Spooky's paint guide

Lappy paint overhaul

Red pepper Paintjob


Low Tech Paint Job

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Monday, 2 November 2009

Music to stay sane to....

A couple of pieces of music that have been keeping me sane while doing work for Uni.

As first impressions go, this video makes a pretty good one! I love the way it has been shot in a pub, with the band performing in possibly the smallest room ever, Lisa not getting the tambourine beating on time at the start, the kids that appear out of no where, its just got a great feel to it. After seeing it on Alan's blog I downloaded her album, Sea Sew, which is definitely worth a look. Might have to pick up a ticket or two for her gig in Belfast.

Man Like I by Natty has been out for about year, its another great album and has a real nice summer, good feel factor to it. Something which is quite nice to put on when the weather is starting to drop a bit. You can pick up a 3 track live e.p. from here for free.

The three e.p.s is another album that has been getting played out by myself. Like many others I came across the Beta Band purely by chance while watching High Fidelity (which by the way is a great film, and has an excellent soundtrack) and I'm quite glad I did, they are pretty awesome. The Three E.P.'s will not disappoint. Sadly they broke up in 2004, and this performance was to be there last. It's still pretty great, as is the "dry the rain" performance.

And an oldie but a goody. Dire Straits brothers in arms live, from the Brothers In Arms album. Old gold, nothing more to say!

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