Charlie Bradbury

Yesterday was almost a Charlie Bradbury entrance day. Except the entrance was not confined to an elevator, it was an almost a public Charlie Bradbury day. As I walked into work I was both in an excellent mood (not sure why) and the extra-shot coffee had kicked in (this may have been why). The Charlie Bradbury is one of my current three preferred methods of entering the office. I save these entrances for the days when I arrive a silly o’clock and there is nobody else around. Otherwise, once the the big and little hands strike normal o’clock, I will walk in like everyone else.

Here I will share with y’all the current three lizziemeates entrance styles. Honestly, they make arriving at work sooo much more interesting…and life should be more interesting. So I would recommend trying at least one of them or inventing your own and just ignore all the strange looks of others. 

The Wrestler a.k.a. Smackdown! 2: Know Your Role style. As I walk in and the lights automatically flicker on, I imagine an announcer:

On her way to her desk…blown all the way from Wellington, New Zealand…weighing…pounds*…the 9 1/2 Wonder of the World…Taz!

Then the mice and I-don’t-wanna-know-what-else-that-creeps-around-the-office-before-the-cockerel-sounds all go wild. Or scatter out of the way. Probably the latter, I actually haven’t yet seen any but I have heard rumours of the plethora of little office friends found in London so I assume that’s the case.

The Charlie Bradbury aka dancing while wired for sound style. Not necessarily boogying down to ‘Walking on Sunshine’ but you get the idea. Incidentally, I would not begrudge a Dean Winchester helping me to take down an evil Dick. Then again, I would not begrudge Dean Winchester many things. He is the 21st century version of Mr Darcy.

The Snake aka MGS Tactical Stealth Espionage style. This was suggested to me by my brother and it is brilliant in its simple ability to frustrate. The Snake is the challenge to enter the office without setting off the automatic lights. Sadly, I am yet to enter the office without triggering the first eco-light-saving-bugger and thus tripping the Alert! calling in reinforcements and causing the Soliton radar to go phut (or worse, causing Campbell to yell dramatically ‘Snaaaaaake!’ into your ear as you bit yet another bullet). The real frustration of this challenge is that one must then wait until either 1) the next day to attempt the challenge again or 2) wait until the automatic lights go off before attempting it again. The second option can prove a bit awkward once your co-workers start to arrive as yelling ‘Wait! Do not enter the office until the lights go off. I must complete the first level! Rex must be stopped! Liquid cannot win!’ would just be outright weird…

*Genuinely, I don’t know what I wight in pounds and ounces. More importantly, beyond mere curiosity, I don’t actually care what I weigh in pounds and ounces.

Marvelous Flying Machines

HurricaneOne important lesson that Sci-Fi has taught me (because there is more than one) is that out there (in the grand-multi-universe-sense of ‘out there’) are countless versions of me, who are like me but not exactly the same as me. For example, if I were a man and it were Star Trek OS then at least one of these alternates would be evil and have a goatee. On a more serious note, I like to think that this means that ‘out there’ is a version of Lizzie that has discovered and, more importantly, named a new dinosaur. There is also ‘out there’ a version of Lizzie who is a pilot. Not a Russell-Casse-in-Independence-Day kinda pilot (“Hell Boys, I’m back!”). No, this Lizzie is a pilot with the RAF and flies a Typhoon.* This thought brings me great comfort as 1) flying machines are awesome in a MacGyver-is-awesome kinda way and 2) I live out my preteen fantasies. As a 12 year old I was obsessed with the 1969 film the Battle of Britain. To the point where I made model aircraft and suspended them from my ceiling in dog-fighting scenarios (something my Mum just loved, pins in the ceiling). All I wanted to be was a pilot and fly a Hurricane.

As you can deduce, the Lizzie who writes this can fly neither Typhoon nor Hurricane and the closest I’ve gotten to formation anything were dance routines as a child. I have accepted that it is now too late to start my career as a RAF pilot. This realisation does not diminish my delight at watching pilots and their flying machines. If anything, it increases my pleasure of such activities. I live vicariously through them as a spectator.

Last Saturday I undertook my regular pilgrimage to the Waddington International Air Show. It was a gorgeous day, as anyone in the UK will attest: last weekend the weather was magnificent. As the British are particular about the weather (it is a national obsession), this called for as much skin to be exposed as possible by the British public. As a Kiwi who grew up just as the sun-smart campaign really kicked off in NZ (thanks to Mr Ozone Hole), I find this disturbing (sunburn isn’t pleasant, skin cancer is worse). I cannot stress the importance of sunblock and sun sense my friends. Judging from the large amount of pink skin I saw on the way back to the car that evening there would have been some sore punters the next day. However, the weather did make for fantastic flying machine conditions: sunshine, clear skies with just enough of a breeze to stop it from getting too overbearing.

The helicopters, planes and piloting were as wonderful as always. There are displays that one just does not tire of seeing, in particular the BBMF and Vulcan. The Red Arrows were as amazing as you would expect, while the Patrouille de France display with their tight (and I mean tight) formation flying was impressive. I particularly enjoyed their version of the Cupid Heart with three planes forming each side of the heart (as opposed to the Red Arrows’ one plane on each side).

However, being something of a sentimentalist (and being equally obsessed with the 1955 film The Dambusters as I was with the Battle of Britain) the definite highlight of the day was the flypast of the Lancaster with the Tornado from 617 Squadron in commemoration of the 70th anniversary of Operation Chastise. The sound of the jet with the four Merlins was just magic.

Once again, I took some photos with my trusty point-and-shoot camera. While not masterpieces of photography, I’ll share some of the better shots with y’all.

*In fact the career of said Lizzie (I’ve thought about this for a while) includes the highlights of piloting a Typhoon, Red Arrow and Hurricane from the BBMF. It is an illustrious career – I mean why dream anything but big?