TIM’s Miniatures & Musings (No: 88)

Welcome to this weeks Miniatures & Musings!

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This weeks miniature is from Reaper and the female figure goes by the name of Almah, Merchant Princess.   A lady not to be messed with and for inclusion in Alex’s Fembruary Challenge.  I went for a simple paint job but am now regretting that I didn’t take the opportunity to see what freehand work I could have considered doing.  Always next time.

DSC_0842DSC_0844DSC_0846DSC_0843

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Well It Made Me Laugh

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The Wednesday Whinge

I hadn’t intended to start with the subject of Racism but then two things happened.  Firstly IRO did a podcast on the subject and then I had an issue with eBay.

I’d never thought of Racism in the hobby but I thought IRO was good to bring the subject up and it did get me thinking about it.  I’m not intending to get into a great debate on the subject but before I get onto my whinge a couple of observations.  Firstly, having attended numerous models shows up and down the country I have rarely, if ever, seen many ethnic minorities in attendance.  I might be wrong but culturally within my sphere it appears they have little or no interest in the hobby.  Then again they may all be at home painting away.  Secondly, the military subjects which dominate from what I see tend to be “white” conflicts.  Of course there are plenty of ethnic campaigns too but the point is do they sell?  I remember a manufacture telling me that for every cowboy figure he sells he can sell 30 or more WW2 figures.  The bottom line is it’s about the bottom line.  Now on to my whinge.

My whinge is in two parts.  The first is very simple.  Now maybe it’s just me, and it probably is but it strikes me it is impossible to have a grown up conversation about racism without someone immediately calling you a racist.  Even IRO felt awkward talking about the subject.  Why?  To my mind if you cannot openly talk about the subject then you are more likely to create new racists.  Yes, black lives matter but so does every life.  I could go on and on about the subject but quite frankly I can’t be asked to address the inevitable abuse.

Now to the second part of my whinge.  Remember this little chap that I posted a few weeks ago?

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Well I decided I would put the little chap up for sale on eBay where he sat for a few days and then I received a message from eBay of which this is an extract.

Quote:

We had to remove your listing because it didn’t follow our Offensive material policy. Listings that promote or glorify hatred, violence, or discrimination aren’t allowed.

What activity didn’t follow the policy

We removed your listing as it violates our Offensive Materials policy. eBay has made a decision to no longer permit Confederate flag listings and/or listings that feature the flag. We believe the image of the flag itself has become a contemporary symbol of divisiveness and racism. This is not a reflection or judgement on anyone selling the item and we respect that there are a wide variety of opinions on this issue. Please note that even if the language is part of the official name or trademark of the item, it is not permitted to be used in your listing title or description. We do not permit these items. Please do not relist these items again. Failure to comply will result in further restrictions and a possible suspension of your account.

Unquote

Now of course everyone is free to draw their own conclusions.  Personally I fall into the camp which says history is history and we should learn from it and not pretend it didn’t happen.  I’m also of the opinion that anyone who is offend by an inch high figure is a sad fuck and is simply indicative of a sad world where political correctness has gone mad.

As someone who worked for a vast global company for 32 years I have worked with people of all races and from all over the world.  Truth be told I have found people generally fall into three categories.  Those I like, those I don’t and those I have no opinion on at all.  Colour of skin is immaterial, if your nice your nice if you’re a shit you’re a shit.

Simples.

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Give Me Five

Before I get abused for being insensitive and racists I thought I should keep the ethnic theme running by this week listing my top five ethnic actors/actresses.  In no particular order:

  1. Sidney Poitier
  2. Morgan Freeman
  3. Denzel Washington
  4. Rami Malek
  5. Thandie Newton

This week TIM has been listening to …

“When Tomorrow Comes” by the Eurythmics.  I do think Annie Lennox is a great singer and together with Dave Stewart they made some excellent music.  Will doubtless line up some more of their tracks in the future but today decided to go with this one.

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This week TIM has been watching …

“Bulletproof” a TV series set in London.  This one passed me by but I have managed to watch the first series and thoroughly enjoyed it.  The good news is there is a second series of six parts, just like the first, and a third comprising of three episodes.  Now looking forward to watching those too.  Oh, and the two black actors, Ashley Walters and Noel Clarke, are very cool and no I’m not just saying that.

Bulletproof (TV Series 2018– ) - IMDb

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Remember …

Don’t assume it is your people skills which are the problem, it is more likely to be your tolerance of idiots which needs working on.

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TIM

43 thoughts on “TIM’s Miniatures & Musings (No: 88)

  1. Great work on the model TIM, has a very Arabian feel with the colour choices you’ve used.
    You make a very valid point about history, whether it be right or wrong, learn from the mistakes, but unfortunately history seems to repeat itself, and we see the same happen again and again.
    As for Ebay, most online companies have this blanket approach, towards any material that could be considered racist, or nudity, as for the model in question, I would consider it a historical representation of a time in history.
    five actors Morgan Freeman, Danny Glover, Idris Elba, Danai Gurira, and Zoe Saldana.
    Always liked the Eurythmics and also liked Annie’s solo album as well.
    Couldn’t get on with Bullet Proof and stopped watching after 3 episodes

    Liked by 3 people

    1. When I think back to my childhood days there is no doubt somethings have come along way. We are still along way short of where, in an ideal world, many of us would like to be and we can only keep working at it. My real gripe is that if we can’t have grown up conversations about such things then how can we expect to make further progress? As for Ebay, as with most corporates their policies are a one size fits all. Understandable but often flawed when you get into specific details I tend to find. Still, it’s what it is and no matter how much such things ike this do my head in we are where we are. Nice list and good to learn you approve of the Eurythmics even if Bullet Proof was not to your liking. 🙂

      Liked by 4 people

  2. Lovely figure, beautifully painted too, it has a great “Sinbad” vibe. Really like this one.

    Was intrigued by your Ebay experience so have just nipped over to Ebay to check something, and yes you can apparently still sell “The General Lee” from The Dukes of Hazard, with guess what emblazoned across the roof? Seems their “filter” needs adjusting somewhat.

    Personally I think it’s ridiculous to ban that figure because it’s holding an historically accurate flag, but I guess we can thank Mr Trump and his friends for that!

    Top five ethnic actors…. I going to be showing my age again now but….

    Mr T
    Roger E Mosely ((TC from Magnum PI)
    Anthony Mackie (Falcon in the Avengers)
    Morgan Freeman (God in just about everything!)
    Halle Berry (Obviously!)

    Cheers Roger.

    Liked by 5 people

    1. Glad you like the figure Roger. I think one of the problems for me, apart from the consistency issue which you have highlighted, is that Ebay is a global corporate. Whilst the confederate flag might still throw up hatred issues in the southern states of the US for me in the UK it’s only significance is a military one and the fact that the Union forces won the day to abolish slavery was a good thing. But hey ho it’s the world we now live in. Nice list and I might refine mine to add Halle Berry. 🙂

      Liked by 2 people

  3. !00% agree with you on racism and the buckets folks fall into. As to the rebel flag, I feel the same was about Nazi symbols on my WWII German planes, it’s history, learn from it and don’t repeat it’s mistakes. Now, if you gloried the rebel (aka LOSER) flag running rampant throughout the US capital, we might have a difference of option about good taste.

    Liked by 3 people

  4. I like the Arabian-inspired mini and paint scheme. I keep telling myself I’m going to paint something of that kind in the future and one day I will get to it. You did a great job with this one as always and I like the bright colors you chose.

    That is a shame about eBay removing your listing. Banning the sale of Confederate flags (as in actual flags) makes sense to me and I understand why they’ve adopted that policy. The issue is of course, subjective and I understand why some people wouldn’t like that policy but I feel that the symbolism of the flag does more harm than good. However, I think a flag on a miniature should absolutely be allowed and eBay should figure out a way to distinguish the two. After all, if that miniature did not have a flag, you would have been fine. Ultimately, eBay is hurting themselves and leaving money on the table and I don’t think anyone would be offended by a miniature like the one you painted. Its a shame you ran into that and it certainly would be annoying and upsetting to me if I were in a similar position.

    Liked by 5 people

    1. Glad you like the mini. Agree with you completely on the flag. In the US the association of it runs much deeper and I get the sensitivity but if you go to far, from a historical point of view, I think you start alienating people who would otherwise be on your side. I support Ebays principle but not their blanket approach. As with a lot of things this is the world we now live in.

      Liked by 3 people

  5. Another nice Reaper mini! Didn’t know Ebay was banning Confederate flags. Not totally sure how I feel that. I guess it’s a pretty sensitive time over here, and some utter nut jobs are screwing things up. Glad they didn’t pick Star Wars symbols as their logos, else we wouldn’t be getting anymore shows or figures!

    Liked by 5 people

    1. If the world carries on the way it’s going Star Wars will be next! You breath these days without up setting someone. I do agree it is a sensitive issue but all to often the approach taken ends upsetting another group of people who were previously fine. As I say, we live in a world where you cannot win.

      Liked by 3 people

      1. At least we can mostly talk about it. There are countries where they just execute you for speaking your mind. And probably worse once they develop mind-reading tech. Now I’m really heading into SciFi land.

        Liked by 4 people

      2. So, I did have a think about this during a walk. I think most of us would agree that there are some things that are just wrong, genocide, slavery, those flip-top bottles of Citadel paint… Over here in the states, we’ve had to put up with (well, depending on whose side you are on) 4 years of wrongness. People being deprived, mistreated, labelled, killed, etc. Then the icing was the storming of our Capitol. The people involved are mostly using the Confederate flag as their symbol. That symbol now has the stigma of hatred and prejudice. So promoting that, also purportedly promotes the same.

        But I think you also have to look at the context, which big businesses like Ebay aren’t going to bother with. If someone broke out a mini with a Confederate flag, or I saw one selling online, I don’t think I would really care. If our neighbors put up a Confederate flag on the other hand, and displayed racist tendencies, yea, I wouldn’t be happy about that at all. So, I think in some cases it makes sense, but unfortunately it’s like Kindergarten, where all the kids get theirs toys taken away because of a few bad actors.

        Liked by 5 people

      3. It’s a thought provoking subject for sure and the last 4 years has been a tough time in the US from what little I understand. The big thing for me is we should be able to discuss such subjects as grown ups but all to often you open your mouth and the next thing you know you are being branded a racist. All in all I totally agree with what you have had to say.

        Liked by 4 people

  6. Those who ignore the lessons of history are doomed to repeat it. It’s the problem with the way some people at the moment are looking desperately to take offense at absolutely anything – it just drives a wedge through society and splinters and factionalises us even more. I’m sure there’s plenty of topics that you and I would disagree on (in fact I’d guarantee it – I’m a very disagreeable person, sometimes I argue with myself just to pass the time) but I like to think that as adults we’d just sit down and have a sensible conversation about it, perhaps over a beer or two, and realise that there’s plenty more that unites us than that divides us. What troubles me is that there seems to be a narrative running through society at the moment that says that’s not ok, that if you don’t wholeheartly agree with someone on absolutely everything then you must revile them. One of my best and oldest mates (actually the guy who got me into painting miniatures) has very different political views to me, but we agree on most other things and have the same taste in music, films and books. We’ve learned to just use each other as a sounding board, to get the other’s take on current issues and there’s been plenty of times when each of us has successful made our case and even changed the other’s mind. Seems a much healthier way to interact than just screaming “Nazi!” at each other on twitter but then what do I know?

    It sounds like in this case you’ve fallen foul of the one-size-fits-all outlook of these big tech companies. My partner works as an illustrator and about a year ago she tried to post an advert through facepuke. The advert got rejected because it showed a female figure displaying too much nudity. The advice she was given was that this would be because the image triggered an automatic algorithm and that if she resubmitted it with a query the image would be directed to a human member of staff who would see that this was laughable and allow the advert to be used. Instead the member of facepuke’s technical staff who looked at it upheld the decision made by the algorithm, the image contained too much female nudity and was pornographic and could not therefore be used. What part of the young lady in the picture was naked I hear you ask? Why it was her arms! She was wearing a sleeveless top, and in the Victorian world of Silicon Valley where women should be nether seen nor heard this is the height of degeneracy!

    Anyway, as you can see I enjoy a good rant myself! Fantastic work on Almah by the way – the choice of colours is particularly nice.

    Liked by 5 people

    1. I think we are cut from the same cloth mate albeit yours is tartan. Agree with all you have said, in fact I wish I could have written it myself! The reality is I am opinionated and not one for sitting on the fence, I nearly always have to take sides. That said I don’t bare a grudge or sulk if someone doesn’t agree with me, truth is I simply enjoy the debate. I’m open minded and will change position if a decent counter argument or facts are put before me. Unfortunately not everyone sees things that way which I think is a shame but I guess each to their own. I think you are right in that with all the will in the world we are unlikely to agree on everything but I reckon we could get very, very pissed discussing stuff and then having another crack at it when we have sobered up! 😉

      Liked by 4 people

  7. Racism is horrible, and should be called out as such. So is Marxism, which has been responsible for millions of deaths in the 20th Century alone. Unfortunately too many are using the cry of racism to shut down speech they disagree with. I fully and completely decry the words spoken by both the Klan or Nazis and their ilk as well as BLM (a truly Marxist organization). I also fully and unabashedly support both of their free speech rights to express their loathsome views. No one has the “right” not to be offended. And enough from me on that, the figure is lovely.

    Liked by 4 people

      1. Yup, took me a coffee or two to get going. I would say is that my understanding is that ‘Black Lives Matter’ is a very reductionist statement that is short for ‘Hey you fucks, remember that black lives matter just as much as white lives, because there is s lot of evidence that some people do not believe it!’…
        Difficult to fit all that on a t-shirt, but that is the sentiment behind it, so to respond with ‘all lives matter’ is rather missing the point.

        The fact that the movement exists at all is a shameful reflection of the systemic racism in the US, and (thankfully to a less lethal extent) ‘the West’ in general. Racist individuals are vile, but their opinions are individually inconsequential (1st amendment rights and all that). Trouble is that racist individuals can become teachers, recruiters, police officers, politicians, generals, and (worst of all) parents, and so it spreads… That is why BLM exists – to remind people that this shit is not ok & call it out.

        I would love it if someone other than this group of white, straight (?) males would respond to your post, but as you pointed out, this hobby doesn’t attract a very diverse crowd…

        Liked by 7 people

      2. I categorically 100% disagree with you Mark, and I’m not ok with agreeing to disagree on this. Feel free to unfollow or whatever & have a good life.

        Like

      3. Hi Alex, I’ll not interfere between you and Mark but I would like to apologise to you both. The subject of racism is an emotive one with strong opinions held by many, myself include. With hindsight it is a subject I should have stayed away from on my blog. It certainly wasn’t my intention to upset my blogger buddies. Lesson learnt, I wont be raising the subject again. Take care mate and rest assured I will always welcome your opinion (and Mark’s) no matter what the subject.

        Liked by 1 person

      4. I’m not upset at all mate, folks can say almost anything that they want to say, and folks can choose to whether they want to listen or not. I find such views abhorrent, so no ill will or hard feelings, I just choose not to listen to or engage with such views, (the same applies to anyone else reading this btw – if you fancy telling me that racism is made up then feel free to jog on & have a nice life, I won’t take offence).

        Having a hobby in common does not necessarily make someone a person that I want to associate with, and toy soldiers do not override my personal value system.

        Liked by 2 people

  8. Well I’m glad it’s a reductionist statement because I wouldn’t fancy freehand painting that T-Shirt! Seriously though I get your (or should that be their?) point and the the fact that the movement exists is as you say is shameful. Equally the need to stamp this stuff out in the impressionable young through education and history is extremely important. That said, as important as black lives matter I think the issue is far wider but but I guess one step at a time. My bigger beef at the moment though is not being able to discuss the matter as sensible adults which is a trend I have seen and one I do not like. As in all walks of life, our hobby included, I would like to see greater balance whether it be ethnic or sexual orientation. At my own club we exclude no one but it’s still all white and male but you can’t make people interested only encourage. Maybe we need an ethnic equivalent to Fembruary?

    Liked by 4 people

  9. Awesome mini mate. I love the contrast in colours. Works really well. In my personal opinion all lives matter of course but I think this too… If I’ve got a little fire burning that’s threatening my shed but the neighbours whole house is on fire I’m gonna go help him first. Deep huh? Haha. That’s pretty shitty about the eBay thing man. Seems to me the world is only getting more crazy in a lot of ways but also better in a lot of ways too. Stay positive.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I reckon it depends how close the shed is to the house. If ignoring the fire by the shed ends up engulfing my house before the other house fire has been extinguished then we have two houses burnt down and I can see no sense in that. At least if one house is standing both families have somewhere to shelter. How the fuck did we get onto sheds? 🤣🤣 As for Ebay it’s no biggy in the scheme of things but it does highlight for me how fucked up the world is at times. As for being positive the wife and I are due to get our vaccine on Saturday! Yipee ki aye!

      Liked by 1 person

  10. Well, that was certainly a read – both the post and the comments as well.
    Great figure, and some really strong colours on her! I look forward to the next ones with your trademark freehanding on them.
    As for the confederate standard bearer, it’s not just that it’s a historical figure to you or I, it’s the fact that there are a lot of chucklefucks out there that would display that figure in the “wrong” way, if you know what I mean.
    Kind of a tangent, but I used to collect 1:6 figures by various manufacturers – modern, WW2, the odd ancient, movie figures, etc. I’ve still got them – just ran out of room to keep buying them (and they got silly-expensive!)
    Anyway, a company called DiD (Dragon in Dream) released figures of Hitler, Goebbels, Himmler, Heydrich, Goering… even though they’re all still historical figures, at some point you have to wonder how would you actually display those if there wasn’t something otherwise odd about your beliefs? For a normie (especially in the US) who sees your standard bearer, that’s what they see – especially after the last 4 years in the US.
    I’m not into cancel culture at all, but unfortunately the context of things changes, and that includes our hobby – especially when taken out of it’s context of a tabletop or collection of painted military figures. On that basis it does change what can be sold, and where.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. One way or another some subjects open up an emotive can of worms and I understand that, even more so in those who consider themselves to have been victims. I also accept that there should be some censorship. It would be wrong to actively promote terrorism or racial hatred for example but it must remain possible for such subjects to be discussed in an adult way. Remove that level of freedom of speech and the next thing you know we have another dictatorship. My beef is not with people who put forward their views, or whether or not they agree with me, it’s being shut down from being able to express my own opinion. In the UK now it increasingly appears to me that if you start to offer an opinion on the subject of raciism you seem to be branded a racist before you even begin!

      As for the modelling angle I get the point you are making. I guess for me it all comes down to taste and context. A model depicting the holocaust at a German model show might be considered highly inappropriate but as a display piece at Auschwitz it might be considered relevant. I guess it rather depends on the message being conveyed. All of that said it is probably best to err on the safe side and leave the subject(s) alone.

      Like

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