Wednesday, 5 September 2018
Thursday, 8 March 2018
On this day (international Women’s Day), it’s important to remember what makes men and women different.
Men think the quicker a haircut, the better experience it is.
Women think the longer a haircut, the better experience it is.
e.g.: ask both sexes* during a haircut would they like a coffee and the responses will sharply define the sex of the respondents.
Most women: “oooh, yes please.”
Most men: (checks time) “no thanks.” (thinks “yuck, hair in me mug? No ta).
I rest my case.
Above: an early gender-bender gives away his chromosomes by declining a cuppa, despite the hairnet & other ladylike attire.
*other made-up “genders” aren’t included as they aren’t real.
Friday, 20 October 2017
The Oct 2nd edition of the bbc history mag podcast is very interesting. The (atheist) historian David Starkey is interviewed on the Reformation.
He says its iconoclasm was the Isis of its day and left England a land of ruins - and that it was hugely unpopular in England. It meant art especially was stopped dead for 2-300 years. He references Eamon Duffy’s excellent work studying the Reformation’s effects, but not Cobbett’s seminal work, The History of the Protestant Reformation in England & Ireland, which is a shame as the latter centres on the social impact, i.e. that the poor, infirm & elderly who had been helped and supported by the monasteries, were left with no support structure - a cataclysmic event for the lower working classes.
The podcast was put out ahead of a new bbc2 programme by Starkey on the Reformation. It sounds fascinating.
Wednesday, 11 October 2017
Sunday, 24 September 2017
You've all heard of Cornman right? He was the pint-sized superhero who used corn-on-the-cob handles/skewers like throwing stars, to fight evil n stuff.
Above: cornman's weapon of choice.
His jokes could be a bit... corny. And he could get a bit moody when he 'got a cob on.'
But criminals and evil-doers feared his homespun brand of justice.
So today I can only apologise because after I parked the car I saw this directly behind one of my tyres.
Yes it seem Cornman is no more. He's moved onto that great BBQ in the sky.
And the streets feel a little less safe...
Saturday, 23 September 2017
There was a Daily Mail (quelle surprise!) story 'tother day about a bloke upset that his online ordered slippers has swastikas in the grip pattern on the sole.
Above: Sam Purdie with the Nazi slippers. "They ain't purdy."
Well imagine my shock when for my recent birthday (I'm 28) Mrs H asked what I wanted. After my usual litany of wine gums, beers n whiskey, I said I might need new slippers. 'Cos I like gardening I said "what about some pansy ones?" (I move with the times, see).
I think I may have to return these though:
Not only did she get it wrong, but they clash with my T34 loafers (if you don't know, ask your dad).
Mind you, I have taken to singing "snooze-time, snooze-time uber alles" of an evening.
Plus I can't wear them whilst shaking my fist at the News at Ten. I don't want people to think I'm a sauerkraut.
And to close here's a sign Mrs H and I stumbled across in Marlborough, in case the above has driven you to alcohol. Amen.
Friday, 11 August 2017
Like an ancient oak whither a regent hid, amidst the foliage, escaping the accursed roundheads of Cromwell, my mug can be aged by counting its rings.
Yes I need to take it home. To misquote another regent, 'a clean mug, a clean mug, my kingdom for a clean mug.'
Sunday, 4 June 2017
Britain beat the Nazis in WW2. Not by hashtags, not by tying teddies to lampposts, nor by asking Germans here if they'd be offended if we said hurtful things (or indeed sang Germaphobic songs, about Hitler's testicular deficiency).
The difference is we declared war, interned Germans, imprisoned PoWs and hung traitors. We're doing none of that. We just talk about inclusion & communities...
So when politicians talk about the "Blitz spirit" or how we are stronger together, point out these differences.
The Blitz-spirit got the benighted victims of carpet bombing through a long dark night, but it didn't happen in a vacuum.
In 1940 Nazi sympathisers were interned, British forces fought in France, Norway, volunteers were called on to fight in Finland, Britain invaded the Faroes & Iceland, Churchill promised blood, toil, tears & sweat, we engage the Italian navy, the Home Guard was established, civilians were evacuated from Gibraltar, the Italians were fought in British Somlialand, the RAF fought bitter battles with the Luftwaffe in the skies over Britain, Churchill ordered the bombing of Berlin, British forces fought Italy in Libya & Egypt, the BBC set up anti-Nazi French & Dutch-language Radio Belgique, convoys were started to Malta, Britain defeated Vichy France in The Gabon... and tens of thousands of troops were evacuated from Dunkirk.
So the idea that the Blitz occurred in a vacuum is absurd. We waged war.
There comes a time when a nation has to stand up to an evil ideology that worships destruction and murder.
Isn't that time now?
Wherever & whenever jihadis raise a flag we should work with forces ranged against them, via aid, supplies or involvement depending on the situation. Fighting Isis (and not the Syrians fighting them!) might be one example...
But the idea that we are fighting jihadis like we fought the Nazis is a joke. And the analogy is a good one. Not all Germans were Nazis, but all Nazis were German* -- not all Muslims are jihadi terrorists, but all jihadi terrorists are Muslims.
So let's declare war on jihad & the hateful Wahabi and similar strains of extreme Islam behind it. If we don't fight it - by all means necessary - we'll never defeat this cult of murder and destruction.
*outside of Germany few fellow-travellers were out and out Nazis, just as outside of Islam few fellow travellers are out and out jihadis.
Saturday, 13 May 2017
Friday, 14 April 2017
If you get a chance read this poem on Good Friday. It reminds us of who Christ was and what He did. Fere means 'companion' from old Saxon.
Ballad of the Goodly Fere
By Ezra Pound
Simon Zelotes speaketh it somewhile after the Crucifixion.
HA’ we lost the goodliest fere o’ all
For the priests and the gallows tree?
Aye lover he was of brawny men,
O’ ships and the open sea.
When they came wi’ a host to take Our Man
His smile was good to see,
“First let these go!” quo’ our Goodly Fere,
“Or I’ll see ye damned,” says he.
Aye he sent us out through the crossed high spears
And the scorn of his laugh rang free,
“Why took ye not me when I walked about
Alone in the town?” says he.
Oh we drank his “Hale” in the good red wine
When we last made company.
No capon priest was the Goodly Fere,
But a man o’ men was he.
I ha’ seen him drive a hundred men
Wi’ a bundle o’ cords swung free,
That they took the high and holy house
For their pawn and treasury.
They’ll no’ get him a’ in a book, I think,
Though they write it cunningly;
No mouse of the scrolls was the Goodly Fere
But aye loved the open sea.
If they think they ha’ snared our Goodly Fere
They are fools to the last degree.
“I’ll go to the feast,” quo’ our Goodly Fere,
“Though I go to the gallows tree.”
“Ye ha’ seen me heal the lame and blind,
And wake the dead,” says he.
“Ye shall see one thing to master all:
’Tis how a brave man dies on the tree.”
A son of God was the Goodly Fere
That bade us his brothers be.
I ha’ seen him cow a thousand men. 35
I have seen him upon the tree.
He cried no cry when they drave the nails
And the blood gushed hot and free.
The hounds of the crimson sky gave tongue,
But never a cry cried he.
I ha’ seen him cow a thousand men
On the hills o’ Galilee.
They whined as he walked out calm between,
Wi’ his eyes like the gray o’ the sea.
Like the sea that brooks no voyaging,
With the winds unleashed and free,
Like the sea that he cowed at Genseret
Wi’ twey words spoke suddently.
A master of men was the Goodly Fere,
A mate of the wind and sea.
If they think they ha’ slain our Goodly Fere
They are fools eternally.
I ha’ seen him eat o’ the honey-comb
Sin’ they nailed him to the tree.
Wednesday, 5 April 2017
Today somone crossed my palm with silver... actually Gypsy Rose Lee it was a £1 coin. But lo. It was a Manx one. And after October 2017 it will REMAIN legal tender!
So it's going in my Arkwright's money-belt for after the revolution/armageddon/Welsh independence/Boris's benevolent dictatorship.
Yes. When the proverbial hits the fan and the Isle of Man is the only functioning society I'll be sitting pretty with my old school £1 coin. Who needs gold bullion?
Sunday, 1 January 2017
By 10.30 we were told it was a stroke and it was serious. We jumped in the car and headed for Cardiff. It was only what I can describe as weird seeing mum. She looked a lot better than I thought she would, she was conversing with ease. We talked about family history, the relatives in America, the news (the honours list etc.), and various other matters. She was joking too. Every now and then she'd say something a bit silly, but I assumed it was the drugs that were being pumped into her. Having said all that, the paralysis down her left hand side was almost total and obvious to see.
The hospital staff said the course she was on could disperse the clot that had caused her stroke, but we wouldn't know for 24 hours. There was also a danger the thinning of the blood could cause complications. Other relatives came and went throughout the day, before we arrived and after we left too.
We left feeling positive. Mum's response to questions on how she felt was "tickedyboo" and given her lucidity I certainly hoped for the best.
I phoned the hospital this morning at 10.30 - 24 hours after the first course of drugs were given - to be told there was no visible deterioration, which was good news as far as it went. We'd know more later in the day when a CT scan was given and they could let next of kin visitors to the ward know more as the results came back.
Then this afternoon I got a call off Jayne to say her boy Ross had been in to see his nan. The staff told him that the first course of drugs hadn't worked and that the next few days were crucial to see if mum pulls through or has some sort of relapse or follow-up seizure.
I started by saying the last few days had been chaotic. In fact it's only been two days. But with the emotions, the downs, ups and downs again, the to-ing and fro-ing, it's seemed like much longer.
Now we're waiting and praying for good news.
Monday, 26 December 2016
And so on St Stephen's Day, aka Boxing Day, aka the second day of Christmas may I wish you and yours a Merry Christmas.
And like Tintin, let's all remember the "reason for the season" and honour the Holy Family.
Nadolig Llawen! Merry Christmas!
Sunday, 16 October 2016
|Owain Glyndwr: an English Soldier|