Half a croissant, on a plate, with a sign in front of it saying '50c'
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Inflatable Cobbles

For the Hovis look (not the Bovis look)
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I visualise inflatable rubber ‘cobble-street-sheets’, much like extended and sculpted grey li-lo’s (inflatable mattresses) in cross-section; fitted snugly, pavement to pavement in streets in typical olde-English towns. These could be inflated on sundays and bank holidays to give the relaxing and romantic look of lazier days gone by.

Dvoøák’s Ninth Symphony could also be piped into the street from speakers hidden in dry-stone walls or old Morris vans.

Once the surface area has been pre-cleared of cobble-piercing debris by a council street-sweeper, the same (but obviously filtered) air sucked in by the sweeper machine could be re-directed into the cobble sheet, thus inflating it easily and efficiently.

During the working week, these could be de-flated completely flat; to allow modern transportation methods to function as usual.

Streets containing tramways are best kept out of this scheme – an unavoidable irony.

riknite, Sep 10 2009

as linked coincidentally on twitter http://news.bbc.co....mericas/8249614.stm
[po, Sep 11 2009]

Street sweeper crests http://www.no-pest.com/PortManOWar1.jpg
[normzone, Sep 11 2009]

Portugese Man o' War http://en.wikipedia...n_shot_by_Velde.jpg
[riknite, Sep 11 2009]

Butcher's van http://www.harperde...mages/dads-army.jpg
Adapted to run on coal gas by the addition of a balloon on the roof ... [8th of 7, Sep 12 2009]

Foyle's driver ... http://img.dailymai...eDM1004_468x538.jpg
Honeysuckle Weeks [8th of 7, Sep 12 2009]

[link]






       Yes, always sand. And gives me another idea: "Austin Maxi-esque sticky melting plastic seat-covers".
riknite, Sep 10 2009
  

       you try walking on them in stilettos! +1
po, Sep 11 2009
  

       //in typical northern-English towns ... Dvorak’s Ninth Symphony// - you mean typical south-western English towns - that Hovis advertisment was filmed on Gold Hill in Shaftsbury. On the other hand, you redeemed youself by referring to metal tram lines in a road as an unavoidable irony.
hippo, Sep 11 2009
  

       Can we drive our steam road-roller over it ? [+]
8th of 7, Sep 11 2009
  

       //Can we drive our steam-roller over it ?//[+]
FlyingToaster, Sep 11 2009
  

       Yay, gonflable!
skinflaps, Sep 11 2009
  

       I love this. The streets of Nantucket are cobble. I'm also hungry, and cherry cobbler is one of my favorites. And now I'm going to make some. Thanks for the idea. It's finally chilly enough here to turn on the oven again.
blissmiss, Sep 11 2009
  

       [po] - I was thinking kind of half-inflated so stilettos etc could still hit 'solid ground'? Easier to walk (and of course ride bicycles) on - hopefully the material would be sturdy enough to withstand the spike. A bit like trying to pop a half-inflated balloon with your finger.   

       Apologies [hippo] indeed, this had somehow always played in my head in a northern "Ee-when-Ah-worra-lad" accent a la Brian Glover. Funny what the memory does; mine anyway. Anyway, done homework, am wrong on this point, have edited to 'olde-English' as a gesture of goodwill?   

       [UB] boom boom tish!! I actually suspect that many an old cobbler will be spinning in his grave at this concept.   

       [8th] I've been looking for methods of rapid air expulsion, so you're hired. Could you be available around the hour of midnight every Sunday... and, um, country-wide?   

       Thanks to all anyway- first-idea-nerves dismissed - feeling warm and wanted. Aw, you guys...
riknite, Sep 11 2009
  

       " the same (but obviously filtered) air sucked in by the sweeper machine could be re-directed into the cobble sheet, thus inflating it easily and efficiently. "   

       Wow. I'm picturing this street sweeper with this BIG inflatable crest on top, like one of those man-of-war thingies.
normzone, Sep 11 2009
  

       Spiffing idea [NZ] if you mean the jellyfish. Ah, you do. Also the crest could be used for bread adverts (know any bakers?) or hobnails or coal tar soap or just coal or something.   

       But not like a ship's sail, of course. That just wouldn't hold water.
riknite, Sep 11 2009
  

       // like one of those man-of-war thingies //   

       Make it look like Corporal Jones' gas-powered butchers van from Dad's Army .....
8th of 7, Sep 12 2009
  

       "You dirty old man .... "   

       <link>
8th of 7, Sep 12 2009
  

       // A bit like trying to pop a half-inflated balloon //   

       So not like popping bubble wrap then.
tatterdemalion, Sep 12 2009
  

       // So not like popping bubble wrap then. //   

       Not quite the original idea, but this has occurred to me. A lot. And with no small amount of glee.   

       How to inflate each individual cell, let alone get the stuff manufactured in the first place, has me somewhat flumoxed. But if there's a way - hell yeah, bring on the steamroller.   

       I suspect this might make it a one-time deal. But at least it would go with a bang, not a whimper.
riknite, Sep 12 2009
  

       Also bring on [po]'s shoes. Stillettos for everyone yeay!
riknite, Sep 12 2009
  

       I can see hobnail boots creating a bit of a problem! +
xenzag, Sep 13 2009
  

       Hobnail boots could be part of the problem or part of the cure, depending on whether we go for the bubble-wrap popping or not.   

       And yes, Foyle's driver will be requested to pop in to the scene frequently for gratuitous appearances. Excellent.
riknite, Sep 15 2009
  

       <Two Ronnies> "Ah always said 'twere bloody long way to go for a loaf o' bread"</TR>
egbert, Sep 15 2009
  

       nice ++
xandram, Sep 15 2009
  
      
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