Monthly Archives: February 2012

Upcoming Shrove

Dear FaceOmeter Friends and Fans,

As some of you will know, every year on Shrove we make a little video celebrating pancakes, friends, and fellowship. Last year, it was a dramatic time travel blockbuster. The two years before that were gameshows – parodies of Countdown and Ready, Steady, Cook – and the year before that was my incisive guide to the definitive batter.

This year, we have big plans for Shrove and we need your help!

We’re making a silent movie, because the success of The Artist has taught us what’s popular, and we are nothing if not commerical leeches. Like all good silent spy thrillers, our film will close with a heart-racing dance number on the eurostar concourse of King’s Cross St. Pancras. What we need is a flashmob of people who are willing to turn up, learn a very basic dance, and perform a couple of takes of it on camera.

You don’t need to be good at dancing, and we anticipate needing less than half an hour of your time. In exchange you get the warm feeling of being in one of our stupid films, which will probably be watched well over 100 times*!

If you would like to be involved, please meet us on the Eurostar concourse of St. Pancras station at 10:30pm this Tuesday evening (21st). Dress is optional, but putting on 1930s silent movie gear never hurt anybody. This will be stupid and fun, like all our endeavours, and we hope you can be a part of it. Basically, the video will be a perfect fusion of these two images:

Look forward to seeing you!


FaceOmeter, The Dapper Swindler, Triple Rosie, and the rest of Team FaceOmeter

PS. Bring a small frying pan if you have one!

*this is not a guarantee

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A Car, Remembered

Apologies to FaceOmeter fans for leaving this blog un-updated for so long – I’ve been preoccupied with other aspects of my life such as the Chronological Discworld Project, the day job, and (you’ll be pleased to hear) devising some new FaceOmeter material and having a splendid time with the likes of Taplin and Jones!

I’ll tell you about all that in an upcoming post, but today’s entry is stimulated by darker stuff – the demise of the Peug. Long-term followers and friends will know that to Max and I, the Peug was more than just a car – more, even, than the freedom to get to all the adventures we’ve had over recent years, most of which would have been impossible without it. The Peug was also a loyal companion, bastion of both practicality and sentiment. It taught me to live in the present, and was a constant reminder of what’s important in life. It was also the manifest power to help out my friends sometimes; and it was my last relic of my grandfather, who gave it to me a few years before his death. It developed fatal engine trouble over the last month or so, and we retired it last monday after just under eighteen years of service, six of them with me.

As you might imagine, I’m going to write a little more about the Peug in other formats over the coming months. There will certainly be a song, there is already a poem (no, you can’t see it yet), and I have another plan coming up for next month, for which stay tuned. All I’m going to do with this blog post is mention the day I actually took it to be scrapped.

It was about two minutes before my last drive in the Peug, which was to be the short hop from my house here in Greenwich to a nearby garage who had agreed to deal with the scrapping for me. I’d just finished removing all the camping equipment, tools and accessories from the car, which stood empty for the first time in years as a result. I even emptied the glove box, and took out my grandmother’s travel sweets tin, which hadn’t left the car since 2006 and which has provided many a friend, old and new, with a sugar boost. Max had come over to pay his respects, and had just departed. There seemed nothing else to do.

At this exact moment, a red balloon, of the sort released into the air at kids’ parties, floated down from the sky. It had been up long enough to lose quite a bit of helium, and had evidently slowly returned to the earth. It bounced off the road, brushed lightly against the Peug’s bonnet, strafed the pavement on the other side, and then rose back up over the top of my house and was lost to sight.

It would be entirely reasonable for you not to believe me, so I photographed it.

Nothing is nicer than a healing coincidence. Leaving the Peug was extremely difficult – but here, as in every other detail of its long life, there is a story. I find that extremely comforting.

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