Weeknotes #26: exhibitions and ABBA

Week commencing Monday, 17 July 2023

A sign depicting a lot for sale in the fictitious Asteroid City. Taken at the exhibition of props from the Wes Anderson film.
Asteroid City exhibition

Quantified Self

  • This week: Stand 5/7; Exercise 6/7 and Move 5/7. (81%, better). Morning walks: 0/4 (days in the office don’t count). Office days 1/5. Total steps: 58,028


  • Related to last week’s comments about the sand trucks, on Monday morning’s walk we encountered a different tractor doing something else to the sand. Jobs you never knew existed.
  • “Johnson was not undemocratically or otherwise improperly ‘forced out’ of Parliament” is a really interesting article in Public Law For Everyone about a very false narrative being peddled.
  • Speaking of de Pfeffel, there are moves in the UK to compel providers of secure messaging services (WhatsApp, FaceTime etc.) to create backdoors for the security services. Nobody, except politicians, believes it’s possible to have a ‘good guys’ back door that can’t be exploited by the ‘bad guy’. Daring Fireball had a good piece on this which ended with the line, “The legislators themselves surely all depend upon [WhatsApp]” and I simply can’t stop laughing given our former Prime Minister’s stance on his own WhatsApp messages.
  • Saturday morning, to the wonderful exhibition of original sets, props, costumes and artwork from Wes Anderson’s Asteroid City. Wholly recommended. I am not sure which was my favourite but I do like the vending machines, the miniature train and the alien.
  • Leaving The Strand, walking through London, we discovered an outdoor exhibition of around 70 super-sized Morph sculptures. It got me asking if Plasticine man, Morph, made it to other countries where viewers may not have seen Take Hart or Hartbeat?
  • And then to The Tower of London. The whole place is fascinating and is a bit TARDIS-like: bigger on the inside that it seems form the outside. The White Tower, which gives the place its name, was built by William the Conqueror. Seeing Traitor’s Gate from the other side was a bit underwhelming.
  • Related, reportedly some of the last people to be imprisoned in the Tower were the Kray twins. It was not for their gangster behaviour in the 50s and 60s though; something to do with not showing up for their National service.
  • Almost 14 months on from seeing the ABBAtars at Abba Voyage, I was back with a different group of friends, to dance to Summer Night City, Gimme! Gimme! Gimme! (A Man After Midnight), Voulez-Vous and Dancing Queen. Last time I thought the ABBAtars were remarkably convincing to the human eye and, from the standing (dancing) area, nothing’s changed: in fact they may be even more realistic. The ABBA arena is holding up well one year later. The Visitors, remains one of my favourite songs.
  • I know it’s work but this is really good. Agile or agility? What’s important, then, is agility, not Agile™ via Dave Briggs


  • Does your employer have holiday homes for you to use? A lovely interview about treating your staff well and reaping the rewards (and then giving them the rewards): Gap Finders – Richer Sounds founder Julian Richer
  • I am determined not to drag out watching Bosch: Season 3 quite as long as I did the second season. Watched a couple of episodes on the train home on Monday evening and then throughout the week. Not quite finished.
  • I did not get into Schitt’s Creek when it started back in 2015. So we’re at Season 1 now. Thanks to Dave. And all because Eugene Levy and Catherine O’Hara star.
  • After extolling the virtues of Asteroid City, we watched another Wes Anderson film: The French Dispatch (of the Liberty, Kansas Evening Sun). Layered, beautifully shot and, perhaps, a wonderful tribute to a type of literary journalism that doesn’t seem to exist (although staff of The New Yorker may disagree).


To save the links getting lost in the future I checked the Internet Archive to see what they had saved for the posts linked here. If the original source above no longer works, these should.