Needle Vs Gun

Contains graphic details – don’t read on if you’re squeamish.

My right ear has all been pierced using a needle, 1.6mm to be precise. I’ve now got three holes in it (the third one was done a few days ago).

My left ear has two holes pierced in the 1990’s, and one pierced about three months ago. All three were done with the gun.

So what’s the difference, I hear you say?

Well the gun is a bit of a brute force method of piercing your ear. The piercing of choice is limited to ones that fit inside the gun. The gun forces the stud through the ear pushing aside flesh. The hole is left tighter, and although better for thin jewellery, it’s not as good for body piercing pieces or tunnels.

The needle, on the other hand, is a hollow needle which is pushed through a little slower whilst the skin is held in place with forceps. It’s a more accurately positioned hole, and because it’s a hollow object it removes a tube of your skin and other tissues as it goes through. In my case all three are 1.2mm holes, the lower of which I’ve now stretched to 1.6mm to take a small tunnel piece. The hole in it allows light to shine through, although the angle has to be fairly accurate to actually see.

Which do I prefer?

Well the needle pierced ones have given me the least trouble. They took a little longer to heal, and the top one bled quite profusely when first pierced. They’re easier to get my jewellery into, but I’ve lost small studs (on a couple of occasions pulled through the holes).

The gun pierced ones are much tighter at gripping the jewellery, but I can’t get certain things through the holes as easily without risking injury.

Were I to start again from scratch, I’d definitely opt for needles all the way.

As an aside, when I was about 20 I had the helix pierced with the gun. I’ve since found out that this was totally wrong and cartilage should only be pierced using a needle as the gun risks cracking it. This is what happened to me and I had to remove the piercing permanently.

Final piercing done.

I’m now up at three in each ear, and I also got a small flesh tunnel in my right ear. Just a 1.6mm one. I don’t know if I’ll go much bigger as I hate the look of them once they get too big.

The tunnel was surprisingly easy to put in, I did it with very little palaver and just a little stretching with a 2mm stretching cone. The new piercing on the top did bleed a lot when it was first done. I’ve got blood all over my hoodie!

Another epic ride, and yet it doesn’t feel so.

All the way from my home to Meadowhall whilst towing the Burley Travoy trailer.

22.5km almost – E-Bike set to medium assist for the full journey (I seldom use full assist as I find it a bit too much). About 70% of the battery power used.

Gotta say Meadowhall do a great job for cyclists with the provided racks. The end ones even have sockets for topping up your E-Bike!

Also, it’s amazing how people give you a wider berth when the Travoy is thrown into the argument. They don’t close pass you in cars as much, and they don’t barge past you in the shops either.

Project Camper – Part 1

I’ve been planning to make a cycle camper for a few months now, and having considered many options I’ve decided to go with the fairly popular Coraplas tube version (there’s a few versions of this on YouTube).

It’s a fairly simple design, although I’ve decided to beef up the chassis a little using aluminium and the plastic triple-wall sheeting from a conservatory roof (I know a supplier of such materials) as I’m rather larger than the guy in the photo above.

It started life as a kid’s trailer, stripped down to remove the sides and fitted with an aluminium section A frame to support the structure.

The Coraplas triplewall sheeting is now cut to shape, but that’s as far as I’ve got for now.

The next step is to encapsulate the edges and then create the upper structure using 4mm Coraplas held together with tie wraps, but that’s for another day.

And the critics come forth…

Or at least just the one… “Why didn’t you wear the leather shirt and tie too?”

Sorry chap, but it’s taken me all this time to summon up courage to wear a three piece suit in the presence of friends and now you’re criticising me for not enough leather?

Support might be a better idea eh?

A birthday!

It’s at this time in your life when all your friends suddenly start turning 50. I’ve got a few of these over the next five or so years (including my own!).

This particular one was at a bar in Sheffield. Myself and Mrs Loony, dressed up for a somewhat goth event, and thus, I give you the first time I’ve ever worn my full three piece leather suit, in public, to a party.

Yes I know I’ve worn it for photos before, but this is the first time I’ve ever worn all three pieces together for more than a few minutes in the company of others, and indeed, on public transport.

I did wear a coat over for the journey, not to hide the suit but because it was flipping cold out!

I’ve got to say I love it with the purple iridescent shirt (and for those of you who know me well, you’ll know that this particular shirt is about 25 years old!).

Sadly the only photo I got of the full outfit is a bit blurry, but here you go!

My last seasonal trip to Alton Towers

Winter is incoming and November usually marks my final trip to Alton Towers. I generally like to go the very last Tuesday as the park is often very quiet and quite delightful to be in. Queues never get longer than 20 minutes, the kids are back in school, and the autumn colours light up the park.

Yesterday was no exception. After a few days of what can only be described as truly horrible weather, it finally brightened up and on a day of beautiful brittle sunlight I agreed to meet Prakash there.

The day started with coffee. It’s important to start a day right. The ducks weren’t really bothering us at this point but we sat on the wall in the early November sun and enjoyed a Costa.

With the day started correctly we then headed down to X-Sector and caught a ride on Oblivion. There’s no Smiler at the moment because it’s been offline for a few weeks due to a technical issue, but Oblivion was a walk on, and it was also Prakash’s first ever ride on the coaster even though he’d been and seen it as a kid.

A gentle walk over to the dark forest netted us Rita and Th13teen breaking his virginity on those two coasters too. Last time he’d been the area was probably Ug Land and contained the Corkscrew.

Now the skyride was closed all day, probably being decommissioned for the winter, so instead of the usual ride across the valley to Forbidden Valley we decided to walk to Wicker Man. A 30 minute queue on the sign board turned out to be more like 15 but on the way across we caught this beauty of a photo.

Finally we headed down the gloomy woods path to Forbidden and wrapped up the big six (not 7 as Smiler was closed, and that’s not counting the family coasters) with rides on the classic Nemesis and my least favourite coaster Galactica. You’ll be pleased to know that Nemesis Ladder and Nemesis Bulb are both still there.

After completing the big rides, dinner called – hotdogs – and unfortunately the hotdog stall in Forbidden Valley was closed so we had to walk back up to Wicker Man for those. I don’t mind Alton Towers hotdogs, but ffs, would it kill them to do onions?

Afterwards I took Prakash and showed him the gardens. We got some great photo opportunities!

Of confusing gigs and floods

Yesterday was gig day. I shared a post originally stating that I was playing at North Ormesby Institute.

Well as it happens that was not quite right. As it turned out we were actually booked to play North Ormesby WMC, a very different club two miles down the road.

We only found this out then we arrived at the first club, only to find that a band were already unloading their gear. Checking our contracts ours definitely said the institute, and theirs did too. Our first double booking ever?

Well a quick call to the agent made us aware that they’d accidentally put the wrong club on our booking form and indeed we were at the club two miles away. Problem solved then, and in a way that was acceptable to all concerned!

Ten minutes later we were at the correct club and started loading in. A nice flat load and very easy to get the van nearby. We loaded in satisfactorily and set up our gear in a nice room. Soundcheck was fairly effortless and we were ready to go in plenty of time.

The stage looked good, the gig ran well, very few mistakes or errors, and apart from a slight hiccup with the lighting during the interval where two of the lights decided to randomly turn green it was a great night.

The chips, on the other hand from the kebab shop next door; well the less said about them the better. They would probably have tasted OK if they’d finished cooking them and the fact that I had time to walk almost a mile (to a shop, to buy Strepsils) in the time between ordering and getting them was a joke – seriously – it took them almost 20 minutes to serve us with two portions of badly cooked chips.

We really appreciate the good feedback we got from the club, and as a result we got a rebook for next year. All good then!

On the way home I kept looking out for aurora, but sadly didn’t see any; and we finally got home just after 2, although it was 1 due to the clocks going back.

Today is Hallowe’en, and since it’s my day off I tend to take a lazy one, however today I had a cycle up to Mum’s on the Fiido. It was a decent ride, although sadly most of the route there is on roads which aren’t good just because too many drivers basically are arseholes with cyclists.

Now on the way up to Mum’s I pass under a railway bridge. It often floods under there, and with all the heavy rain last night and this morning it was indeed flooded. I know it well and I knew that I could stick to the footpath which is about 8″ higher than the rest of the road and easily make it through – however as I was just starting through a Renault came from behind me on the road and ploughed through the flood at speed, sending a huge tide of water all over me and soaking my jeans, although I did have a raincoat on so my top half stayed dry.

The Renault moron received his karma though, as about half way through he hydro locked his engine. Solid. Dead. A 2019 registration car, killed by a fool. That will now require a full engine rebuild at a cost of over £4000, and it will probably never be quite the same unless a new engine is fitted.

I would like to say I didn’t gloat, but I did shout to the driver (after the “you f**king c*t” when he soaked me) that I would be reporting him for soaking me, you see, in the UK it is an offence to deliberately wet a pedestrian or cyclist and I have heard that it can be dealt with as a form of assault. I got up to Mum’s and sat in front of her fire to dry off. I’ve also reported the driver. Yeah Karma is a bitch and has already dished out her punishment, but I was fucking drenched. Honestly. I got home and all my clothes went straight in the washer because they smelt like a dirty pond, also, I know my Fiido has an IP rating for water ingress, but what if he’d damaged my bike electronics?

On my way back I went a slightly different route, and was confronted by this.

I poked it with a stick an assessed it to be about 6″ deep, so I went for it. I’ve certainly tested the little Fiido today with the water.

I went through it slowly and steadily, and the little beastie took it in it’s stride.

Tonight is Hallowe’en night, and I’ve already carved a pumpkin. It’s got two sides. One for the kiddies…

…and one for the adults…

And if you don’t know what The Game is, then here you go…

There are three rules to The Game.

1. You ARE always playing The Game because you are aware of it.

2. If you think about The Game, you have lost it and you must tell someone “I have lost The Game” and you are out until the next day.

3. If someone asks about The Game, you must tell them about The Game, and then inform them that they are now also playing The Game.

Oh, and, I made you lose The Game. You can say thanks later.

North Ormesby tonight

After a change in the billed event (which was originally the evil load of Cargo Fleet club) we’ve now been moved to North Ormesby. A much nicer load in and pretty much flat if I remember right, plus there’s food across the road so I can have a pizza if I want.

Being back out gigging feels good but I’m still very hesitant about the COVID pandemic but I also understand the government’s “not locking down” policy as it was seriously damaging the economy.

Strap yourself in… This is amusing!

So yesterday I suited up to take some outdoor pics of me in my full leather suit. I’ve become somewhat of a recluse just lately, especially since getting my own decent sized unit which I can store and wear all my gear in.

Now the problem is that one of the woodlands I used to use years ago has now become inaccessible by car – so I packed up all my gear into a bag, loaded it onto the Burley, and cycled the few miles up there.

Once there I found a secluded bit of shrubbery and changed into my full leather. With the weather being pretty atrocious I knew nobody would be around. This particular place is dead most of the time – and I was pretty confident that would be the case yesterday, after all it was windy as hell!

So I’m in full leather, with my phone on the holder on the bike, taking selfies. It’s not too obvious what I’m doing. At this particular moment I’m sat on a tree stump taking some, after doing a few standing shots.

I’m in the middle of doing quite a few photos (a shoot like this usually takes around 100-200 shots to look good)…

When I heard an “excuse me” from behind…

It turns out two guys had been walking down the path behind me and had noticed my bike. They started asking questions about it, and then one of them drummed up the courage to say “nice outfit, is it all leather”?

Sheepishly I said “yes”

He said “I like it, I’d wear that!”. I scanned it for sarcasm. The comment was clean. We then chatted for a couple of minutes, the questions really were serious and very much of the line that I think the guy would wear it. I don’t think they were a couple, just friends, but you never know.

It was refreshing to not get a sarcastic comment about being a gimp, or similar.

(to be fair, he would have probably looked a damn sight hotter than me in it!).

Now speaking of hot, it was 16°C yesterday when I was taking these pictures. I was hotter than Satan’s armpits and I had to change back, but I did manage a short ride in it all. I will say it’s not easy riding in this much leather!

I’ve now ordered a couple of extra bits as I’ve realised that holding my Galaxy Fold 3 steady really isn’t easy with the phone holders I have. I need to think more tablet!