The 007 attache/briefcase

I like to shop, which doesn’t necessarily include buying.  In fact, I usually don’t if we are sab-bond-briefcase-croptalking about places like Jermyn Street and Piccadilly. Although I have shopped and bought things there: It can get really expensive if you make a habit of buying in these shops.

Case in point (yes, bad pun intended)–I just learned that Swaine Adeney Brigg (SAB) made the iconic briefcase for James Bond in “From Russia With Love”.  I grew up with that in my mind.  I believe there was a kid’s toy version made of it.

It makes sense since SAB makes “bespoke luggage for Aston Martin owners – think Aston Martin and you cannot help but think James Bond. 007 is one of our customers too.”

Q issued 007 with a range of explosive spy gadgetry. One of Bond’s most memorable weapons was the black leather briefcase issued to him in “From Russia with Love”.

Swaine Adeney Brigg made this case. Within its distinctive red skiver lining, the case hid 20 rounds of ammunition and gold coins, plus the flat throwing knives used to dispatch villain Red Grant aboard the Orient Express. The case also usefully hid a 0.25 caliber AR7 folding rifle with infrared sight. (Used by Bond to shoot down the SPECTRE helicopter pilot who was dropping grenades on him at the end of the film.)

You don’t need to be Sean Connery to own 007’s attaché. We offer the Q-Branch briefcase as standard issue to all of our customers. It’s a must-have for collectors of James Bond memorabilia and 007 gadgets.

The case has no pockets in the lid, so is an open box inside. We will supply you with an exact replica of James Bond’s case that we made for the Bond movie; any modifications you choose to make are down to your own imagination.

Most of our customers ask for a pocket here, a strap there. But we can, of course, accommodate more unusual requests from agents in the field. Often, just a small twist on a classic design can turn your attaché case into a real talking point.

Given Bond was one for the good life, shopping at Jermyn Street, Picadilly, and Saville Row make sense.  Swaine Adeney Briggs is mentioned twice by Ian Fleming: first in From Russia With Love: “Q Branch had put together this smart-looking bag, ripping out the careful handiwork of Swaine and Adeney to pack fifty rounds of .25 ammunition, in two flat rows, between the leather and the lining of the spine.”They are also mentioned in You Only Live Twice, where Bond remarks: “I must get Swaine and Adeney to make me a two-yard-long walking stick.”

You can stop in at the store: 7, Piccadilly Arcade, Jermyn St, St. James’s, London. Failing the ability to make a personal visit, the case is available at: www.swaineadeneybrigg.com/store/swaine-adeney/attache-cases/sab-bond-35.

I will say that you should have a fair amount of loose change since this will set you back £1,995 for the basic case (options are extra).  Not to mention that SAB doesn’t mess with lesser craftsmen’s work: that should clue you in that you will be paying for nearly 300 years of English quality.

SAB is worth a visit if you are in the area (and look like you can afford to shop there…). You can read up about them online and in the book, In Good Hands: 250 Years of Craftsmanship at Swaine Adeney Brigg.

Oh, and if you do need a non-SB umbrella fixed in London, don’t bother with James Smith either.  Neither SAB or James Smith do repairs on umbrellas these days.

Bradshaws (and other guides)

The first thing I thought when seeing Great British Railway Journeys was “someone should publish copies of the guide he is using…”

Well, someone has been doing that since the first Bradshaw’s guide was rare (the only complete copy).  It seemed it would have made more sense to use the copy than walk around with a rare book, but that’s me.  Not to mention people at home wanted to follow along.

That is probably why my first post on the topic got so much attention: down to Michael giving the link to it!

Anyway, these guides are available in facsimile editions. Quite nice ones I have to say.  Part of me wants to do a tribute “with my Bradshaw’s guide” video.

Go for the “official guides” which look EXACTLY like the ones Michael uses since the reprint editions tend to be other versions (and not well defined as to WHICH version it is since there are lots of different versions of these guides).  Amazon carries them, which is good if you are in the States or otherwise outside the UK.  You might have to copy the title to your local Amazon site to find it, but they can be purchased for a reasonable price outside the UK.

NOTE: The guide used in the Great American Railway Journey’s is Appleton’s Railway Guide to the USA and Canada (link is to reprint edition: ISBN 978-1471159947).  Watch out for the other reprint editions since they are NOT the same.  Also, the quality of those isn’t that good.

It seems that the original guide was one of Amazon UK’s top sellers!  So, it WAS a good idea to reprint it in facsimile!

I should also give a plug to Robert Humm & Co, which is the specialist book store that sold Michael the original Bradshaw’s used in the series.  They are an independent bookseller specialising in railways, other transport and industrial history.  They bill themselves as “Britain’s largest railway bookshop”.

Don’t like Muslims?

هذا النص ليس له غرض سوى بث الرعب في قلوب أولئك الذين يخافون من اللغة العربيةpledge

“We are a republic, not a democracy”

caricature-anglaise-de-la-revolution-francaise-50fc7cec

“We are a republic, not a democracy” was the slogan of France during the Terror.

For those not in the know, the Terror was the time when the national razor (aka, the widow or the guillotine) was used in a promiscuous manner.

It also showed up the founders’ love of republics as places where there was an enlightened harmony and stability.

The US is in a serious constitutional crisis and has been for some time.  No, Trump’s election is not the start of this, but a symptom of the decay.

The concept of the electoral college is indeed to thwart the popular vote, a concept in opposition to true democracy.  We can get into it preventing those who shouldn’t have the office. But that isn’t as germane as the concept that it also was supposed to keep a state, or groups of states from controlling the process since swing states control the process as much as a state with a large population.  The bottom line is that a few states control to the detriment of the nation just as much with the Electoral College as without.

Getting rid of the electoral college is a start to much needed election reform in the US.

After all, the US has been going to war to ensure democracy around the world–shouldn’t it practise what it preaches at home?

 

“Betsy Riot”

I thought I would check the definition of Betsy given at the Betsy Riot site with amusing results.  It seemed fun to share it.  Part of me wants to open comments on this post for a grin.

I won’t get any viewers since I will leave off the tags which usually serve as gunloon attractors.

betsy
The tourists call the place “Betsy Coed”, but it is pronounced more like “Bettis E Coid”. The locals will know what you mean if you say “Betsy Coed”.
 
I could try to find a clip of Michael Portillo saying it, but this is as close as I could come to finding someone say the place name:
howjsay.com/pronunciation-of-betws-y-coed.
 
Anyway, not sure how this came out as a result, but it was good for a laugh.

President Trump?

I guess it shouldn’t come as a surprise that I am not a fan of Hillary Clinton.  My reaction to hearing she would be the Democratic choice back in 2015 was “what the fuck are the democrats thinking?”  I went for Bernie and made the Demexit a little after the AP called the primary for Clinton.

That said, this pretty much sums up what I feel about the US election

https://www.facebook.com/plugins/video.php?href=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.facebook.com%2FJonathanPieReporter%2Fvideos%2F1044777035645189%2F&show_text=0&width=560

Posted 11/11/2016 by lacithedog in Uncategorized, US Election, US Elections

Arguebot!

It is well known that this blog doesn’t take comments for a lot of reasons, but it seems there is a tool for dealing with Twitter trolls.

The bot is programmed to respond to all the main phenotypes of angry, unfulfilled internet bro, including alt-righters, Gamergaters, MRAs, Anonymous, Julian Assange fanboys, and the ever-present Infowars conspiracy theory crowd.

It posts endless provocations of the sort that invariably attract a creeping cloud of Twitter harassment, and it often names names.

I have to admit it would be fun to have an automated service bait people to a post and then let rip on them.

It seems that some of these trolls can’t figure out they are dealing with a bot and can spend hours arguing with it!

seriously, the bot is just like honey for internet jerks they spend hours and hours yelling at it

(although I did have a fun conversation with the early Eliza AI programme which I am sorry never was saved, but that is another story that would preclude me from ever serving in US public office.  Just in case having multiple nationalities also wouldn’t stop me.)

As the post said, you have to wonder about people who would spend 10 hours arguing with someone on the internet.

As the article pointed out people should stop seeking out and arguing with strangers on the internet if they don’t want to make fools of themselves. A bot can’t make you look foolish; you can only do that to yourself by taking the bait.

While I don’t really like pointless argument–it’s nice there is an obliging bot out there to keep people who do amused.

Posted 11/10/2016 by lacithedog in Facebook, Social Media, Troll, Uncategorized