Monday, 30 March 2020

Maniacs With Pointy Sticks

Apologies for the brief absence but the "black dog"has been very much with me for the past few weeks and to be honest I couldn't be arsed posting. 

What do you mean you didn't notice my absence?!

Tch!

Also, if you are wondering where the last post about my rules "mashup" went, well I tried to delete the entire blog in one of my darker moments… and the last post was as far as I got! Typical. No bloody staying power. Half a job Broom they should call me. Lol.

To best illustrate my state of mind I include (for your delight and delectation) a photo of a box of loo roll, seen on a trip out to a nearby woollen mill of all places.

A box of loo roll, for those who've forgotten what one looks like. Hate to think how much that lot would be worth at the mo.

Anywhoo, with no further excuses to put things off, and little else to do during the lockdown, I finally set too with a brush and started work on my Viking force for Dux Bellorum. Painting for me is unfortunately something to be endured and highlights my overall lack of skill. I find that 15mm can be almost as unforgiving as 28mm when the objects are the subject of a photo!


Thank God the photo is my usual crap standard! Viking general plus companions on right flanked by a bunch of ordinary warriors on the left. Oh yes, there's some skirmishy archers in the background.
Noble warriors in super blurry crapovision

So, the units are built on a 1:10 ratio and are mostly Peter Pig 15's with a few Splintered light cast offs amongst them for variety. Units are based on a common 6cm frontage but with the warrior elements made up of 2 x 3cm bases so that I can distinguish them (with my ageing peepers) from their shield wall brethren. Companions and noble warriors have 8 figures per base plus a flag, ordinary warriors 10 figures per base, noble shield wall 10 figures per base and a flag while ordinary shield wall has 12 figures.

I've still got two more units of ordinary warriors, one lot of shield wall plus some skirmishers to do before I can get a game in - but at the rate I'm progressing that shouldn't be too long.

On a lighter note, and God knows you deserve one, you'll be pleased to know that TCMB and I will soon be joined in our new abode by...


Coco the wonder cat

Coco has confirmed she is looking forward to doing a bit of toy soldier mangling as soon as I turn my back for a minute. 

Finally, for the benefit of those estranged members of my family trawling this blog to find out what I'm up to, in January I secured a position at a nearby cheese factory, stuffing cheese strings into plastic bags one day a week for minimum wage.

Disappointingly I thought the woman in the job centre said it was a "G" string factory, rather than a "cheese string" factory, so I spent an entire week looking forward to working with exotic underwear - only to end up wrangling mozzarella.

And to think my father said I'd never amount to anything!

Yeah, the jokes on you Dad.

TTFN

24 comments:

  1. Cheeses? - ah - I thought you said you were working for Jesus.

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    1. Bonjour meister Foy, if Jesus pays more than £8.49 an hour I’m his man! By the way thanks for your recent pm’d kind words. They cheered me up a treat.

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  2. The Vikings are looking really good, excellent poses. Unlucky on the string factory mix-up, but you could always turn up to work in exotic underwear and use it as a sort of distraction when explaining wargaming to them :-)

    Like you, painting for me is a means to an end, but hopefully the rewards of the results as the armies grow will bring you some good cheer ...... as no doubt will Coco, as your comfy chair becomes her favourite napping place. Norm.

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    1. Hi Norm, the pictures don’t really do the figures justice but yeah Peter Pig always produce nicely sculpted figures in appealing poses. The armies are coming together quite quickly so hopefully I’ll be able to get them on the table shortly.

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  3. Good to see you back old fruit. If you haven’t got the dream job of working in ladies’ underwear at least you have a nice p...[no best not got there after my admonition by M.Foy] kitten to look forward to.

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    1. Hey nundanket,

      If you were admonished by Msr Foy it must have been for a good reason. Obviously honour demands that you now do the decent thing. There’s a revolver in the drawer. You know what to do with it.

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    2. First time I've laughed out loud in weeks!

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  4. Good to see you back! for me, painting is a relaxing endeavor. I don't know what I would do without something to paint. Oh, my wife, "Paint the bedroom!"

    Your mix up with "Cheese" vs 'G' is understandable. Were you offered a modeling job?

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    1. Hi Jonathan, you find painting relaxing because you are bloody good at it and the results are well worth the effort! They did offer me a modelling job but I turned it down. I’m not sure the world is ready for me in mozzarella hot pants just yet.

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  5. Hurrah! He Lives!...
    It’s good to see you back old chap...
    I have been reading through Dux Bellorum... so I look forward to seeing what you do and what you think...

    Cheese Strings... get all the samples you can... they are bound to be the next big panic buy...

    All the best. Aly

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    1. Hi Aly, I must have read those bloody rules 5000 times over the last two years - not to mention a glutter of ravens which was its precursor and which has been in my possession for around 10 years. They look great and I’m looking forward to having a bash with them.

      On the cheese front, if the virus lockdown lasts I hope to go into business as a sort of mozzarella spiv, stealing pocketfuls from my employer then selling it in back alleys for a handsome profit. Lol.

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  6. I'm another 'painting is a chore' person, but somehow what I does has improved gradually over the past 40 years.

    Glad to see you back; I missed you even if no-one else did.

    I don't have Dux Bellorum, but I do have Glutter of Ravens, so I'd love to see a comparison sometimes. I may have to find my copy of Glutter, once I venture into our lodger's part of the house again in a couple of weeks (all my gaming stuff is stored there, but I only go and raid it every couple of weeks so we minimise close encounters).

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    1. Hi KK, from memory DB has a series of minor tweaks over Glutter of Ravens that actually improves on the original, not just alters it for the sake of it. Like you my copy of Glutter is not readily accessible so I'll have to dig it out when I get mo.

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  7. Good to Sea you back, those black dogs are bloody annoying, it's taken me many years to train it.

    Peter pig figures I feel have a charm about them, sculpted to ease painting and always look good en masse.
    I too still have Glutter of Ravens and I think my copy is very old!!! Looking forward to your dabble in Dux

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    1. Hey Graham, another one with a copy of Glutter of Ravens eh?! And there's me thinking years ago that I was so niche. Lol. The other thing about PP I find is that despite their great quality the miniatures are actually a reasonable price as well.

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  8. JBM, I had been wondering how you are and how you were coping with things in these extraordinary times back in Blighty. Normal life seems like, well, a lifetime ago but I think we made it back just in the nick of time?

    That same black dog has paid a visit to me too recently, coming home was not supposed to be like this was it? My salvation has been painting model soldiers and I'm bashing them out so fast I'm worried about running out, although Old John is preparing another box of shiny metal to keep me going.

    You mentioned that you almost deleted your entire blog, well I fully understand and empathise with you there as I have done it myself a couple of times in the past when at a very low point and everything you do seems worthless. But as the mist slowly cleared I restored it and am glad I did, so please keep going because you certainly brighten my mornings, I mean, where else can I read a post about cheese strings and G strings :)

    Anxiety and depression is a basta*d at the best of times, let alone times like this, but I very much look forward to you getting some soldiers on the table again to entertain us with your wonderfully humorous narrative.

    Oh, and Coco is a little stunner and is absolutely going to brighten your lives whilst at the same time destroying your furniture and mangling your soldiers.

    Take good care my friend.

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    1. Hi Lee, I knew you'd understand. It's a bloody corrosive and self indulgent mind set that for me at least seems difficult to shake. In the short term I might have found an answer however by volunteering to help at the Cardigan food bank. There's a load of people there who really have good cause to feel down. Makes me feel ashamed.

      I think you are right about getting back to Britain just in time, though as a very nice chap with a french moniker observed in a recent email - it's most likely that people only succumb and relapse when an extended period of pressure is lifted. The last six months have been extraordinarily intense (for both of us) and now… well the only pressure I face is getting 2kg of mozzarella in a bag! Lol.

      Thanks for your comments about Coco, she's a Siamese cross and very cute. We should be getting her next week and if she's anything like Lola, she'll prove extremely therapeutic. Hopefully the furniture and soldiers will only get a mild mangling!

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  9. Well I have certainly missed you blog posts. At times I have laughed out loud over your tales of an Englishman Abroad which has garnered me some odd looks when in the office reading your blog. I'm in splendid self isolation although I'm not sure if that is from medical advice or because no-one in the family wants to talk to me! Mrs E and I have realised that we are actually very comfortable staying in doors although the dogs are getting more than a little grumpy. I spotted George doing PE over a vaulting horse yesterday but couldn't work out where Barney was for the life of me. He appeared later with dirty paws I may need to start doing roll calls.

    Oh and as a painting obsessive may I say that your skill with a paint brush is not to be belittled. I have seen far worse and very few better. They are intended to be played with so the task is to get them table ready ASAP. Not everyone wants to (or in my case is capable of) winning Golden Dragons or whatever the painting awards are called.

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    1. Hey Elenderil, thanks for dropping by. I hope you are managing to get out enough to exercise the hounds? My son's retriever needs loads of exercise and is loving the fact that everyone is constantly available to take him out. On the painting front I do tend to be fairly critical of my capabilities, not helped by the fact that wargaming periodicals tend to feature work by a number of very gifted individuals like Lee!

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  10. Well, I'm glad you're not dead! Good to see you back, better that it's Dux Bellorum! Nothing wrong with your troops, they're fine, I've been painting Dux Bellorum too,of course not for 2 armies but three and not completing them either, hey ho,looking forward to more insights from the people's republic once your allowed out again!
    Best Iain

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    1. Hey there Iain, three armies is more than I could contemplate at the moment especially in the scale you are using! Oh man...all that painting! With that said I do get the odd twinge of large scale jealousy when I look at the superb work you’ve done on your DB chaps. Lovely stuff mate.

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    2. Three armies is just hubris and bad planning on my part! Six starter armies, oh I can do that and on it goes,I'm sure yours will be much more sensible!
      Best Iain

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  11. The troops look perfectly fine, and I am glad you are feeling at least a modicum better!

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