Daily archives: December 6, 2006

I'm your stalker too

I'm your stalker 2

Okay, I didn’t make the text that much bigger in this one, but the derangedness is more obvious and it’s laid out differently. Which design appeals more?

I may yet change my mind again. The problem is that I’ve got far too many fonts and too many ways to distort and modify them.

Update You can buy “I’m Your Stalker” T-shirts at my shop on Cafe Press.

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Department of Free Ideas: Net energy producing social housing

The Department of Free Ideas is something I’ve rolled out a couple of times at Spinneyhead. It’s basically irregular posts where I outline ideas I’ve had that I just don’t have the time, money or expertise to follow up. They’re just ideas, not costed and often without links to supporting material, but I believe they merit further investigation, which is why I want to set them free. If anyone likes them and can act upon them, then they’re more than welcome to. Credit or royalties would be cool, if you’re inclined.

We don’t have enough houses in Britain. Particularly, we don’t have enough affordable houses and council house building has ground to a halt. On top of that, we really should be doing more to cut energy consumption. So why don’t we solve these problems by building council houses that are so efficient that with the addition of micro-generation they produce more electricity than they consume?

These houses couldn’t be individual show pieces dropped amongst ordinary box homes, for the scheme to work properly whole streets or closes would have to be built. Economies of scale menat that technology that would be exorbitant on a single house could be incorporated relatively cheaply. Heat pumps could warm whole closes and the buildings could be arranged to catch and convert the most sunlight.

Tenants would have to sign up to certain community responsibilities, the sort of “socialist” idea that drives some reactionaries mad, but in return they’d get to live comfortably without worrying about ever rising energy costs.

Poorer families can’t afford energy saving devices, partly because they’re struggling with the cost of the energy they’re wasting through older equipment and poorly insulated houses. Even if no council will take up the challenge of building such green homes for them they should at least be subsidised to make the savings themselves.

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So Much To Answer For- Part 23

Rachel parked nose on to the curb, just for silliness. The Smart was shorter than the next car along was wide, so it wasn’t a problem.

“We should probably get some food.” Joe pointed in the direction of the shops. Rachel did a skip and shuffle move so she was on his left. He’d noticed she liked walking on this side of him, but hadn’t figured out why.

Ahead of them someone jogged across the road. Joe only registered it as movement until they reached the pavement. The figure was wearing the scally uniform- baggy track suit bottoms and hoodie, both black with embroidered swoosh, trainers and baseball cap- but somehow didn’t look pale and unhealthy enough.

The faux scally stared at Joe, took a few steps and, mere feet away, drew a gun.
Joe froze. The gun swung up and levelled, pointing at his face. The scally’s finger was on the trigger, squeezing it.

Rachel didn’t freeze. Acting on an instinct she never could explain, she had moved away from and slightly ahead of Joe when she had seen the scally’s expression. Now she leapt. She caught the gunman’s wrist and pushed it aside just before he pulled the trigger.

One shot from this small revolver was so much louder than the whole fusillade from the Kalashnikovs. Joe was certain he felt the bullet pass his ear.

The scally’s upper body twisted. His knees began to bend as he moved to correct his balance. Rachel kicked the side of his knee, hard enough to feel something give. He began to collapse, a scream marking his fall.

Joe finally reacted. He moved away from the pinned gun hand and helped Rachel hold down the scally, now bawling non-stop. “Let go of the gun.” The scally stopped screaming and gave him a defiant look. “Let go of the gun or she’ll break your fingers one by one until you do.” Rachel gave him a look that said ‘I will?’.

There was a clatter as the gun hit the pavement. Rachel carefully pushed it out of reach.

“You saved my life.”

“Yeah, well, I owed you. We’re going to have to talk to the Police again aren’t we?”

“Yeah.” Joe got his phone out and started dialling.

“Damn. All this adrenaline is making me horny.”

“Police please. And an ambulance, I guess. Self defence classes?”

“I keep starting to learn martial arts and never finishing. Judo, Tae Kwon Do, Karate……”

“Yes. Someone just shot at me. No, no, I’m fine. We disarmed him and we’re holding him now. Yes, you probably should…..”

Part 24
Part 22
Part 1

Other fiction- check out Heavensent, the propeller-punk sci-fi war novel I recently wrapped up, or download Another Education/Ruby Red or Ten Years Asleep.

Donate Now I’ve started writing again I’m unlikely to stop, but it would be nice if I could eat during my breaks. So please feel free to donate some money to my starving author fund by clicking on the PayPal button below.

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SUV sales fall

The message may be getting through. Sales of larger 4x4s dropped 5.5% in the first 10 months of this year, and by 15.2% in November. The Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders says this is because of the phasing out of two popular models and sales will pick up again, but I have more faith in people’s common sense.

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