I… I have no words.

Thanks to the work of the Ramsey Bay Over Saturation Society and their insistence on pumping up the Lightroom sliders to unbelievable levels, we’re now all painfully aware of the #RBOSS phenomenon.

Using software to make shots look better than they actually were is fine. Of course it is. It’s when you go WAAAYYY over the top that it gets silly and ugly and then when you have the audacity to suggest on social media that “it came out of the camera like that”, well, then we’re really heading way down the road of RBOSS wankerdom.
It’s just deceitful karma-harvesting and it pisses me (and a lot of other people) off.
Quite reasonably.

I’m talking about stuff like this, this and this. It even spread to Bergen, which really doesn’t need assistance in looking good in photos.

But all of that (literally) pales into insignificance with what I saw on a Sheffield Facebook group this morning. Because… I mean… even when a sunset is spectacular, you can’t claim that it looked… that it looked… like this:

What in the ever living fishcake has happened here?

This isn’t “Tonight’s sunset over the village” as the protagonist claims. This (I think) used to be Aston on the border of Sheffield. But this isn’t a sunset. This is the actual star crashing into our planet. This is thermonuclear detonation. Billions of megatons of raw explosive power blasting out streams of plasmatic energy across the rolling hills of South Yorkshire. Every atom right across the Western sky exploding in perfect synchronicity, creating an ultra-electromagnetic shockwave that instantly kills everything in its path.

And it’s not helped by comments such as “Absolutely gorgeous!!! [several heart emojis]” or “breathtaking!”. The only breath that’s being taken here is your final one as the blast of hyper-energy – having melted your eyeballs in a nanosecond – sucks the very last molecules of oxygen from your lungs, leaving merely a smouldering pile of desiccated remnants where you once stood.

What makes it impossibly worse is that this guy sells images from his drone. It’s his business. He wants you to pay for this kind of thing. Money. Real money.

To be honest, this is beyond RBOSS. No-one could have known that the technology to over-saturate to these sort of levels even existed. We simply didn’t think it would ever be possible, but this guy has unashamedly gone multi-Sharples.

End times are upon us.

Day 561 – Around the world

Geoguessr (see 6000 miles… passim) have updated their UI and their overall offering, including new games, new challenges and more points for doing well.

It’s easier to use, more fun to play, and I’ve become readdicted.

This week, I have mostly been trying my hand at maps of Sheffield and Cape Town.

I should have a decent knowledge of them both, but actually I’ve only managed full marks a couple of times and I really need to improve my speed.

Practice, as they say, makes perfect. So I’m back to it right now.

Sheffield boy

This worked well.

Yep. That’s me.

This was an interactive quiz on the New York Times website, of all places. It asked me a few questions about what words I used for various things when I was a kid: infants, bread rolls, being grumpy and certain items of furniture, and then worked out where I was most likely to have grown up, given the dialect that I used.

Apart from being extremely accurate, it brought back some great memories. Playing Tiggy-Off-Ground in the school playground (that’s On-On to my kids now), for example. It was our standard go-to game before school started in the mornings (but only because you weren’t allowed in the back playground before school and you weren’t allowed to play football in the front playground, obviously).

And then there was that “being grumpy” question. To be fair, they could have pinpointed me with just that one answer. I really don’t think there’s anywhere outside Sheffield where “mardy” is a thing.

Made internationally famous by these guys, of course:

As the test was unfolding, I was wondering if I could fool it into thinking I was from Newcastle, and yes I surely could have done, but that was hardly the point.

If you’re reading this in the UK (and you’re from the UK), give it a go and let me know how you get on.

The elephants… are inconsolable

Sad Death of an Elephant Trainer in Sheffield

It happens. Elephant trainers are every bit as mortal as the next guy, and when the Grim Reaper comes calling, even their big, thick-skinned, flappy-eared grey friends can’t do anything about it.

See here:

And I quote:

SAD DEATH OF AN ELEPHANT TRAINER IN SHEFFIELD

In the early hours of this morning the accident to Fred Hartley, who was in the employ of Messrs. Sanger as elephant trainer, terminated fatally. Such a sad ending to what was considered only a slight mishap was not expected until within the last day or two. It appears that during an afternoon performance on the 19th inst. the deceased, who was a promising young fellow of 26, and a great favourite with the visitors at Messrs. Sangers’ establishment in Pinstone street, handed to one of the elephants a horse-pistal [sic] for use in a trick. The weapon went off suddenly, and the wadding lodged in the palm of Hartley’s hand. The wound though painful was not regarded as serious, and the injured man was medically attended at his home for a few days. On Sunday, however, alarming symptoms began to manifest themselves and his removal the the hospital was advised, where after lingering in dreadful agony, he died as stated. Lockjaw is returned as the cause of death. The deceased has been in the service of Messrs. Sanger ever since he was a child and his loss to them is felt very keenly. The elephants, with whom he could do anything, are inconsolable, and it will be a matter of no little difficulty to fill his place in their affections. The funeral will take place at the General Cemetery on Sunday.

Lockjaw – or tetanus – is caused by Clostridium tetani. A simple vaccination or dose of metronidazole would have saved this “promising young fellow”. But this snippet from the Sheffield Telegraph (and shamelessly borrowed off Facebook) is likely from the 1870s, and they hadn’t quite got their heads around the microbiology of it all back then. Still, it’s a good reminder of where we’re headed with increasing antibiotic resistance and anti-vaxx idiots.

Because yes, even a mild injury to your hand, caused by an elephant shooting you with a horse-pistal [sic] could be fatal again soon.

It’s something we all need to be cautious of.

A Sheffield classic remastered

Sheffield has a rich musical history… actually before I start – if you’re one of those readers who closes the page at the first mention of music, can I just say that this video has been sent to me by several people – including two who freely admit that they are readers who close the page at the first mention of music.

So this might be a bit different.

Sheffield has a rich musical history, including the like of Def Leppard, ABC, Arctic Monkeys, Little Man Tate, The Longpigs, Bring Me The Horizon, Pulp, Heaven 17 and The Human League. So it’s unsurprising that when looking for a Christmas single, local boys The Everly Pregnant Brothers (you may remember them from My Chip Pan’s On Fire) chose to cover a local song in a local style.

Dunt Tha Want Mi? is what the 1981 Christmas number 1 from The Human League should have been called. Local dialect, in’t it?

Add a bit of Jingle Bells and there’s a surefire South Yorkshire classic, done right.

Truth be told, I felt that this might be a bit niche for all but the most Sheffield of my readers, but apparently it’s storming up the online streaming charts nationwide in Blighty, so they must be doing something right.

Thoughts welcome.