SH61

The keen-eyed among you will have noticed I have a new header at the top of my website, the not-so-keen-eyed are checking it now. I always enjoy a little tweak and change every now and again when it comes to websites. I don’t often get the chance, but when I do, I like to really think about what the design means. In this case, it was a perfect opportunity to consider the purpose of this blog as well as my history of getting here.

Blogging, for me, was the natural progression from my earlier life where I kept journals. And, although this is a far more public forum to voice my thoughts – it is a poetic collection of the progressions and developments that make me who I am today. And when I thought back over the many years that I would write about my activities and adventures, one early memory still sits fondly at the the start of the story. Yes there were many stories prior, but this one was the start of my journey of becoming who I am today. That is the story of 61.

You’ll notice from both the title of this blog post, as well as the subtitle on the website, SH61 is a code marks my initials and favourite number. Favourite number because of the story of 61.

Many of my friends from my tweens will know the origin of 61, a short home-video I helped produce alongside a fantastic team of friends. The story of 61 revolved around secret agent named Back Jauer and followed the east same premise as the critically acclaimed FOX TV show 24. Sound effects and soundtracks were lifted from 24 to produce a not-too-shabby couple of movies that will live fondly in the memories of those involved. But 61 served an unexpected purpose for me beyond the immediate joy and entertainment that it provided to those who were lucky enough to see it. It helped me realise that when you really believe in something, and you rally a team around you who feel the same way – you can accomplish things that you previously wouldn’t have dreamed of. Was 61 perfect? No. Part of me would love to go back and re-act, re-film and re-edit them to bring them up to the high standard that is achievable with today’s home-video technology. But we didn’t have that back in the day. In fact, it was incredible we were able to achieve what we did. But all that aside, the end product was a success in our eyes. And it’s that success that has kept me believing, inspired me to keep on trying and to hope for things that I never thought were possible.

And the most exciting of those adventures, I believe, are still ahead.

Oh, and what of the feathers and the lion in the header?
They play their own parts in my story too. But those stories aren’t finished yet.

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When the stars align or Procrastination Constellation

It seems a little late to wish everyone Happy New Year, perhaps that’s because things are moving so fast. Not surprisingly, then, that we have nearly reached the end of the first week of 2017. Crazy.

It’s usually about this point that I give up on my New Years’ Resolutions. In fact – that’s the main reason that I gave up on them. To quote my instagram post from New Years’ Eve 2015:

“The only thing that will change for certain tonight is the date. Everything else remains as unchanged as you want it to. This year I’m making daily choices, not one-off resolutions”

And it’s true, resolutions can give the inaccurate illusion that by publishing dramatic lifestyle changes to social media – that you have actually achieved it. When, in actual fact, the resolution is probably a lot more involved than a quick decision on December 31st. And then, when most probably, it doesn’t happen – you end up feeling worse than when you first began.

But here’s the thing. There’s another side to it too. For me, at least, it’s so easy to not make any drastic decisions for the year ahead. But then forget to make the little ones daily too. And decisions and actions for change can be a really good thing. Even if they are uncomfortable at times.

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Order Overload

It’s been too long. And for those of you who know me, you’ll know why. Things have been crazy busy at sholdstock towers over the last few weeks as our LEGO Minifigure Caricature business received its biggest ever boom in the build-up to Christmas (pun intended!). We’re thrilled at the volume of orders and as much as I’d love to write more about it, time doesn’t permit on this occasion as the orders are literally waiting for me in my next browser tab…

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Spammalot

We live in a fantastic age. The age of smartphones, instant communication and virtual mailboxes. But with every development comes the annoyances. And with modern technology – it’s spam. The rise of the spammer has been a gradual dripping tap to everyone with access to communication. But here in 2016, it’s a bit less of a dripping tap and more of a torrential downpour of plain horse excrement. It is the juicy un-popped pimple on the face of modern technology. As an owner of quite a few web-based businesses and manager for many more, it’s something I have to deal with on a daily basis. Sometimes hourly. So my patience for spam is all but gone. As an 80’s sitcom once put it “I’ve got one nerve left, and they’re leaning on it..!”.

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Social Protocol for the Modern Man

I am a man. Something I quote to myself overtime I need to do something I don’t want to do. You know. Change a poopy nappy, walk the dog in the rain, socialise, get up in the morning. Live. You know the deal.

But in all honesty, I think there is a ridiculous stereotype that grinds my gears. And it’s the expectation that all men need to be ‘men’. You know what I mean. Men need to drink beer and burp. Men need to love football and hate crafts. Men need to drink Coke instead of Diet Coke. Men need to be the master power tools and be obsessed with sex. And heaven forbid that a man ever like pink as a colour…

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Revenge of the Staff (Supermarket Chronicles Revisited)

It’s been a while since I’ve written anything Supermarket related. It’s almost as if the Supermarket Chronicles served as a fun purpose at the time, but after leaving the Supermarket business there has been little in the way of stories to tell. UNTIL NOW… This is ‘Revenge of the Staff’ – a Supermarket Chronicles Revisited post.

Shocking as it may sound, I actually do some of our grocery shopping at a shop and not through the Internet. Yep, that’s right. I actually leave the house to purchase food on occasions. And perhaps, even more surprisingly, my supermarket of choice is Lidl! Perhaps the stereotypes here fit, but I’m not too worried about appearance here. The food tastes really good and is insanely cheap. It’s brilliant. But less that a week ago, I had the most fun I’d had in the supermarket as I’d had in a while. You see, I was able to witness a fantastic battle of will, fury and speed. The age-old battle of customer vs staff.

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