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clownfish

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Ocellaris Clownfish or False Percula Clownfish (Amphiprion ocellaris)

Using system water and live rock from the local aquatic shop (that’s Heritage Aquatics in Wallington, Surrey in case you’re looking for a professional, reliable and friendly service) meant that we were able to start adding some critters and a couple of clowns to the tank sooner than if we’d had to go through a normal cycle of the aquarium.

Whilst we’ve seen evidence of a rogue crab (a small black arm with a little pincer on waved at us on Friday evening), things look pretty good so far. A couple of peppermint shrimps (Lysmata wurdemanni) have already had a go at a couple of the aiptasia anemones (which is good, because they’re a pest) and the turbo snails (Turbo fluctuosa) and emerald crab (Mithraculus sculptus) are busy with the algae that’s grown over the past few days.

And… to round it off, we picked up two Ocellaris Clownfish (Amphiprion ocellaris). An hour spent deciphering the Maxspect LED timer instructions (I’ll post up something on that subject later on), two carefully placed crab traps and all seems well in the tank so far.

adidas IRAK Rmx EQT Sport Runner

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adidas IRAK Rmx EQT/Equipment Sport Runner

Another top-shelf shoe and one of the best collaborative editions of all-time, in my opinion.

When IRAK teamed up with adidas at the end of 2007, people weren’t ready. Unusual colours, amazing material choices and some in your FACE typography scared most people off. There was little hype surrounding them too: you could quite easily pick these up months after they dropped at Alife’s Rivington Club store in Manhattan. You never really see people use things like black 3M paneling or fluorescent plastic, so these still look amazing three years on. I reviewed them briefly on Trashfilter years ago (maybe one of the first posts I ever did, thinking about it) and I still rate them just as highly now.

I’ve met and worked with the guys at Alife a couple of times on various adidas projects and they always kill it with their concoctions. Look at their back catalogue of product collaborations: it’s flawless.

Hats off to Earsnot, ARC and the IRAK crew. RIP Sace.

adidas IRAK Rmx EQT/Equipment Sport Runner

Marine nano tank

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DD Nano 24g marine tank
My tank with the stock tube lighting

A third aquarium was inevitable: we’ve got the tropical area covered with our Malawi set-up, the coldwater section sorted with the little mountain minnows… and now I’ve got the marine and reef category ticked off.

I’ve wanted to try keeping marine fish for years, but never thought that I’d be able to do it. Water chemistry is a whole new ball game when you start trying to keep things that normally live in the oceans: salinity, temperature, calcium, magnesium, phosphate… the list of parameters you need to monitor is pretty endless. Get one thing slightly wrong and you risk losing livestock that may have cost you hundreds of pounds. Scary stuff.

But the industry has advanced enough and knowledge has been shared which means that it’s a lot easier to try your hand at keeping Nemo and his mates. I picked up a nano tank – the popular DD 24g – the other week from Will and the guys at the excellent Heritage Aquatics in Wallington, Surrey and it’s been sitting in the flat quietly cycling so that I can eventually stick some corals and fish in there. I’m going for a skimmerless live rock system with regular 15% water changes to keep things as natural and simple as possible. I’ve already found about 10 Aiptasia anemones (not good: they’re a pest and hard to eradicate), a pink/white snail (good: will eat some of the algae that’s been growing) and a baby blue starfish (great!).

Our clown fish and shrimps are due to arrive in the next week if the water is reaching the grade.

Maxspect G2 160w LED
Maxspect G2 160w LED unit, pre-installation

The stock lights with the DD 24g are good, but as I want to invest in growing some brightly coloured corals (some Acanthastrea specimens and the standard Ricordea and Duncanopsammia fellas), I’m upgrading the lighting to a Maxspect G2 160w unit from the guys at Fish Street in Hong Kong. The pictures above do the LED bulbs NO justice at all: it’s like actually having the sun in your lounge. I’ve got to add, the Fish Street team are 100% efficient and professional: I ordered the lights on Saturday evening and they arrived by UPS to my house in the UK on Thursday. Only got hit with a £14 customs charge too: considering they cost nearly £400, I was bracing myself for a lot more.

I’ve also bought acrylic sheets, clear polypropylene mesh and a band saw: one custom lid coming up.

More progress reports later (probably after the hospital visit, once I’ve sawn my fingers off).

Sneaker Freaker

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Chris Aylen for Sneaker Freaker

Wow. I wasn’t expecting that to go online so quickly after the shoot with Errol.

Woody and the guys at Sneaker Freaker have just published a ‘catch up’ feature on my big (ie. silly) collection of trainers/sneakers after their interview with me for the Vintage feature they did a couple of years back. The models I chose to feature this time around were a little different to the ones I picked last time, so there’s not too much repetition. And I couldn’t be arsed to put them back in the attic either, so they’re now clustered around the flat instead.

Nice to be featured on there again: thanks Errol, Woody, Mafia and the crew.

Chris Aylen for Sneaker Freaker

Autumn

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Autumn

There’s nothing like a walk in the park on a cold and crunchy afternoon.

Nike Huarache Burst AD21

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Nike Huarache Burst AD21

One of the brightest colourways in my collection, the AD21 Bursts are in my top 5 Nikes of all-time. Released exclusively for the Japanese market vai the AD21 store back in 2004, these were pretty difficult to get. My days of doubling-up on shoes are over, but I’ve kept a spare pair of these on ice because… well… you just don’t ever see them for sale.

Great for dull winter days.

Nike Huarache Burst AD21

adidas Crooked Tongues ZX 9000

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adidas Crooked Tongues ZX 9000

The Crooked Tongues piece in the adidas aZX puzzle, Charlie and Gary did a cracking job with the colours and material specification on these ZX 9000s. They’re packed with loads of great details: carbon fibre heel strike, charcoal 3M panels and other cool elements. I’m not sure these got the attention they deserved when they dropped back in 2008.

adidas Crooked Tongues ZX 9000