My blog archives 2 – Ninglun’s Specials

Just to remind you: “Ninglun” is a Mandarin version of “Neil”, adopted as a pseudonym in the early 2000s. The “Specials” began in 2008, originally as a space for more visual posts.

Closely watched trains 2

Posted on March 14, 2008 by Neil

Part of my childhood: bloody long coal train near Sutherland NSW.


Linked to source

But if you were lucky, hauled by one of these, or two — a D57. I hadn’t realised they date back to 1929!


Linked to source

“Owing to their weight and cylinder dimensions, they were strictly confined to working between Sydney and Thirroul, Junee and Wallerawang and were not permitted to run on any part of the Northern Line.”

It became for a while a photo blog mainly, until the blog in yesterday’s post took over.  There is also a lot of personal and family history in the Specials: “Around 300 posts and lots of pages — pages that are important to me and posts I hope you still enjoy.”

Comment threads on a number of posts are still quite active.

2008 was the peak year, with 32,047 views. The last two years have averaged 16-17 views a day. The most viewed posts and pages from 2007 until now have been:

  1. Home page / Archives 23,644 views
  2. Family stories 3 — About the Whitfields: from convict days 7,571
  3. 10. But is it art? Responses to the Bill Henson controversy of 2008 7,081
  4. Sequel: Art Monthly Australia July 2008 4,653
  5. 05 — Old Blog Entries: 99-04 3,502
  6. Top poems 2: John Donne (1572-1631): Satire III — “Of Religion” 3,263
  7. Family stories 1 — mother 3,259
  8. Family stories 4 — A Guringai Family Story — Warren Whitfield 3,151
  9. Surry Hills 2,573
  10. Gustave Dore’s “Ancient Mariner” illustrations 1,976
  11. Chinatown 13: Chinese Gardens Darling Harbour 8 1,791
  12. About 1,579
  13. More tales from my mother 4 — Dunolly NSW — and conclusions 1,330
  14. Sights of old Sydney 4: Cleveland House, Surry Hills 1,298
  15. Family stories 2 — About the Christisons 1,292
  16. DSL collection – Chinese Contemporary Art 1,268
  17. Top poems 5: Thomas Hardy (1840-1928) — “The Oxen” 1,261
  18. 07 — a controversy — For the record: the great SBHS race debate of 2002 1,255
  19. The Bard, a Rabbit, and Ninglun 1,047
  20. More tales from my mother 1 — Spencer, NSW 967

More nostalgia. In my boyish imagination…

Posted on April 20, 2008 by Neil

… I had a bit of a thing for men in tights, or shirtless, as indeed did many in the 1950s. Whether there was an extra significance in my case I leave entirely up to you. I have met some who never seem to have recovered…


Yes, The Phantom. That’s a whole blog on the subject.

And Robin of Batman and fame I truly identified with, so much so that I once convinced one little boy that I was Robin! I must have been about 10 at the time.

I don’t now what he and Batman are up to here; perhaps the source tells us. There are some very remarkable images there. 😉


Tarzan was big in Vermont Street Sutherland; a good excuse to strip off, make alarming noises, swing from trees, and engage in wrestling.


See more here.

Finally, of course, there was Superboy, an attractive fantasy figure for the somewhat nerdish. This comes from Silver Age Comics, a blog “Mostly Dedicated to Comics Published from 1955-1970″ — which means I must have been on the tail end of a Golden Age, though I didn’t know it at the time. My comic reading subsided from 1955 on, aside from religiously following some, including The Phantom, for a very long time. How long I refuse to say.


Nothing homoerotic about any of this, was there?