29 October 2009

Daily Chat 29/10/09

Three people were killed as a result of the first trial for witchcraft in Paris in 1390.  Sir Walter Raleigh was beheaded for allegedly plotting against James I in 1618. Mozart's Don Giovanni had its debut in Prague in 1787. Tanganyika and Zanzibar united to form Tanzania in 1964.

Born today:  Niki de Saint Phalle (1930-2002), Bob Ross (1942-1995), Denny Laine (1944), Richard Dreyfuss (1947), Dan Castellaneta (1957), Rufus Sewell (1967) and Edwin van der Sar (1970).

It is Republic Day in Turkey.


  1. About yesterday's thread:

    My Country 'tis of Thee is the song that uses the tune of God Save the Queen. It's ghastly. This Land is Your Land would be fine by me.

    Interesting that the Duke should bring up Dos Passos. He came up in conversation just the other day and, out of curiosity today, I asked 4 teachers and our school librarian if they'd ever read him. Not one of them had ever even heard of him. Not even Manhattan Transfer. And these were Reading & English teachers -- not Math, Science or Phys Ed. I've not read the USA trilogy, myself (though I will soon...), but I do know that we read either short stories or excerpts from the trilogy in my Am Lit class in high school.

    We're a nation of morons. Illiterate (semi-literate, at best) morons.

  2. We're a nation of morons. Illiterate (semi-literate, at best) morons.

    Don't despair Montana, because the US is not so bad
    according to this list

  3. Nice one Sheff

    Now were did I put me reading glasses......I may be gone some little time.

    Good morning all - fab dawn here in Yorkshire. I am away to enjoy the day hope yours is good as mine will be.

  4. Before I go ( From today's Guard):

    "Earlier this month the Treasury slashed the Isle of Man's budget by £140m after it discovered a 400-year revenue sharing agreement was weighted sharply in the tax haven's favour. The cut was equivalent to a 24% budget reduction. The 80,000-strong island faces steep spending cuts and possible higher taxes."

    Bloody fast them Treasury boys...

  5. Deb Orr's taking on the Baby P case. In an interesting way - although it needs reading through a few times to get what she's saying, her 'conclusion', I think, being buried in the middle:
    "the lack of precision surrounding this woman's trial and conviction seems deliberately to deny the relevance of the poor choices she had made for herself and her family in engineering the situation which fostered this crime"
    However, I foresee a large number of comments from people who've only read the opening para:
    "It is a pity, really, that the mother of Baby Peter, Tracey Connelly, dropped the planned appeal against her indeterminate sentence, with a five-year tariff, for causing or allowing the death of a child."
    and go off on one.

  6. PS - who's the guy with the crazy hair and the creepy painting?

  7. PB - a google of Bob Ross brings up the the image

  8. Morning all. It is a gorgeous day in South Yorks today. Am laid in bed with the windows open looking out over the hills and the leaves are turning and the sky is blue-ish and the sun is out! Lovely.

    Sheff that is a comprehensive list there!

    Good article in the Society section yesterday on the new ESA - but it only got about eight comments - they keep hdiing them away. Wish the Guardian would do a leader on such things. But still at least they are writing about them. I am gonna try and do a link to it so patience all!


  9. Well that didn't work! I am going to keep practicing - not here don't worry. Will take thauma's instructions and get other half to read them and then show me.

    Got the in-laws coming today!

  10. Have just wagged my finger at Hattersley. Feel much better now.

  11. Can you go wag your finger (or a two-by-four) at Bagsos on the Orr thread? Because I don't think I'm going to manage to keep the swearing out of my next post...

    More fancy dress help needed - Hallowe'en party on Saturday, theme: Gods and Goddesses (or, to placate certain persons - "feel free to dress as the manifestation of the belief system with which you are the most comfortable").

    Have nice greek-goddess style dress but my sword got bent at the last party.

  12. I'll go and have a look!

    my sword got bent at the last party

    That's going to keep me giggling all afternoon!

    I always go to fancy dress parties as myself.

  13. Billy Bragg's on the radio - "Sexuality" - I'd forgotten how brilliant that song is!

  14. "We can be what we want to be"

    Bless 'im.

  15. I've been to the Orr thread a couple of times under my nom-de CiF. Some spectacularly neanderthal missing of points going on... my other half was a sw for 25 years, and the issue is about services and the underclass not f'cking JCR gender spats. Let's blamestorm ! OOoh, so CATHARTIC ! Fools.

  16. PhilippaB
    Half English was even better !

  17. Bitterweed - I confess, I had to read the piece several times before getting what she was at, but I did it, carefully. Can't help feeling that I put in substantially more effort than some posters, although those bleating about the undereducated not getting it are probably just as annoying. I do think it's a good and thoughtful piece, but the style is at times difficult to deal with, and I don't think the smug calling the puzzled 'children' is particularly helping. Anyway.

    Somebody's using Bea Campbell as support for 'feminism blaming all teh menz' so I may have to step back from this one before descending to language...

    Although can now amuse self trying to spot who you are over there [chuckle]

  18. Philippa - bah, I reckon bagsos is a troll and not worth responding to.

    Good posts by spoonface and the one with nhs in username. And your good self, of course!

  19. This comment has been removed by the author.

  20. Hah ! Funily enough I got it all straight off. She's making a good point, and it could have done with being re-written but the remaining CiF sub editor seems to have been shot by AA Gill...

    Bea Campbell doesn't do feminism any favours. Lady "you're lucky to have me and my OBE" Bea and her tedious bullshit is CiF kommentary in its finest essence... utter shite !

  21. Bea Campbell is not a feminist. She's a Beacampbellist (OBE).

  22. My Country 'tis of Thee is the song that uses the tune of God Save the Queen.'

    Damn it to buggery that was me getting it wrong again - GBA is of course by Irving Berlin.

    Phillipa a friend of mine toured with (ie down the list) Billy Bragg in the 80s - said he was wonderful, a gent.

  23. Hey Sheff - fucking brill.

    Further to our brief chat/exchange on Sunday about Henry Moore and me dad!!......

    The Moore Foundation archive have replied to my email and sent me some 8 jpeg copies of photographs taken in the Wheldale (Castleford) pit circa 1942 - I pretty sure one of them is "the lost photo" of me dad and Moore is in the photo sketching him which I had quite forgotten till I was reminded by the picture they sent .

    They are going to send me a print to see if I can verify it for sure. Black and white photo's of a sweaty miner underground covered in coal dust might make 100% identification questionable in a court of law - but I'm quietly confident albeit that it's about 40 years since I last saw the picture.

    There's another of a bloke with a pit pony who looks very much like him (and is ringer for my youngest son) too.

    Oh happy day today. But also a tinge of sadness I had intended to try the archive after my last visit to Bretton Hall at which time my sister was still alive and she could have confirmed the accuracy of my memory and perhaps validated the 'pit pony/miner/moore' photo which I have no certain recollection of .

  24. Deano - that's fantastic. Keep me posted on how things develop - would love to see the pics at some point.

    Phillipa - what about one of the Greek muses, say Calliope - muse of poetry. or perhaps even Sappho - all you'd need is the greek frock and a wicked smile...(possibly a small stylus and wax tablet.)

  25. Oops, I've just gone off on one of the "sterilise them" contributors on the Orr thread. Don't expect it'll stay up long though.

  26. Deano - brilliant! Do post it when you get the print.

    Sheff - aye, that's what I'm thinking, having a couple of slinky grecian numbers in the wardrobe, and with the possibility that there's a laurel wreath available after the last party. May try making a harp out of cardboard. Good call.

    Edwin - good news re Mr Bragg. I always think that there are some 'celebs' where you just like their work, and some where you like their work and would happily share a pint with them. And I always thought Bragg would be in the second category.

  27. Thauma - nice one. I quite like children, and fortunately my mates who have the little blighters have all stayed reasonably normal, but I do wonder sometimes if part of a person's brain falls out in the delivery room. Apart from anything else, the use of the word 'kiddies' should definitely be a marker for serious perspective issues. "Sterilise them! Them! Not me, so proud of my football team I use my fecundity as my user name! Not me! Them!"

  28. I will, I will keep you'se posted- the contrary old bastard would have been so delighted to have known that he finished up in an archive!!

    And me - oh what a yarn from the tramps bench I am beginning to weave. A tramp with a photo like that couldn't fail but pull from a Lutyens bench - watch this space.

    Hope my granddaughter doesn't get wind of this blog and reveal my true identity to all those clever young things at the Glasgow School of Art where she is studying. Nothing worse than having one's style cramped by a grandchild....

  29. Philippa

    so proud of my football team I use my fecundity as my user name!


    There's another one on there now, callig herself Madeley; an alert must have gone out on mumsnet or something.

  30. Evening all

    So much work to do. Gah. Hope you are all well. I will be dipping in and out this evening.

    Sheff - don't suppose that case with the cat was reported by any chance was it?

  31. BB - it was all over the gutter press. My understanding is what I posted on the asylum thread - gleaned internally as it were. I should think if you google cat/asylum/AIT something will come up.

  32. Oh yes, have spotted him.

    I thought a 'preciopus' was a small land-dwelling creature (herbivorous) from the early cretaceous period, so what that's got to do with anything, I don't know...

    smtx01 also appears to have been reading something else before posting.

  33. Cat? What? Googled as suggested and found this.


    fabourite part
    "even the name of the pet cat was blanked out in official court papers to protect its privacy."

  34. Philippa, you are comedy gold today.

    Found the same cat article as you did. Reading between the lines, it sounds as though the cat part has been overplayed and real reason is that the Bolivian had been in a stable, four-year relationship.

  35. O noes! A new MacShane! And, judging by the headline (foolish, I know, on Cif), I might even agree with it!

  36. thauma

    correct - the key was the right to family life, but not a good story for that
    element of the press.

    BB - think sithepi might be a presenting officer - in which case s/he will need to tread carefully.

  37. Hi everyone

    Delighted to hear the news about the photo. Hope you'll share it with us one day.

    I strongly supported the "causing or allowing the death of a child or vulnerable adult" offence, which is a section in the Domestic Violence Crime & Victims Act. Anyone over 16 living in the same household can be charged with is offence.

    It was necessary because parents/step-parents/family members were literally getting away with murder, by staying silent about the killing or by blaming the other party/each other. There were many cases of babies being killed and no-one being punished by law. And there was the Margaret Panting case in Sheffield, where an elderly lady suffered burns, bruises etc for weeks before her death. No-one was prosecuted.

    I assume that, since this is a fairly new law, it is being tested in the courts re: the distinction between 'causing' and 'allowing'. I'm not sure I see any difference: the outcome is stiil the death of someone who can't fend for themself.

    Guess I'd better take a look at the Orr thread. Then, when I've calmed down, I'll have a gander at the cat article!

  38. Sheff- yeah, (s)he is by the looks of it. I hadn't read all their comments, but now it is clear. Still, there are some good ones as well as some absolute bastards! :o)

  39. Thanks for the cat info, btw.

    *visions of asylum seekers raiding pet-shops*

  40. Chin - I will with the greatest of pleasure and pride share it with you all one day. Dad was no David but as a piece of family history it's fucking great and I get giddier by the minute.

    The story gets richer by the minute, since my posting, I've had another email from the Mooore Foundation - a parcel of the pictures is soon to be in the post - and my correspondent says that the archivist has said that my fathers name was written on the back of one of the photo's..

    I will of course be having copies of the picture taken and framed for my kids and grandkids. I am as they say 'round here fucking chuffed.

    Got me ticket for the Euro lottery - we could yet be filming Furnivall by the new year....

    Best W.

    Wheldale pit was for those of you who may not know was where Henry's father worked.

  41. I need to take a look at Deb Orr's thread too, now I have mostly finished all my work \o/

    Time for a beer also methinks.

    MsChin - "Causing or allowing" is perfect for precisely those sorts of cases. It will take a while for its precise application to be hammered out, but it is a relief that there is finally something there that can be used in those case. Like you said - people literally getting away with murder.

  42. thauma:

    'the cat part has been overplayed and real reason is that the Bolivian had been in a stable, four-year relationship.'

    Was the Bolivian really a horse then?

    The horse and the pussy cat came to stay
    In a beautiful pea-green boat
    The Mail demanded 'Go away!'
    And the horse said 'Ill get me coat'.

  43. the horse he was an asylum seeker
    fleeing from grief and woe
    the UKBA said we're not your keeper
    so why don't you fuck off and go!

  44. hehehehehe - excellent you two.

    Pip - I see what you mean about how difficult that Deb Orr article is to understand. I don't know whether I can be arsed to read it more than twice, really.

    Too tired! Gah!

  45. Cheers BW - until now I had thought that the only demonstrable connection that I had to "Art" and Artist's was:

    (i) at the age of 14 I had lost me virginity to some pedophile 20 year old female art student from Leeds College of Art;

    (ii) at age 22 I had married a wonderful lass who had trained as a ballet dancer and who to this day walks differently from other girls;

    (iii) at age 42 I had become a grandfather to a wonderful granddaughter now starting her studies at the Rennie Mackintosh School of Art Glasgow;

    My what hidden depths my family have. Me dad a model for Henry Moore....

  46. Deano

    If your laptop still holds out with its blutack, you really need to write a book. Seriously. You have had an interesting life, and one that people would enjoy reading about.

  47. Deano - lovely story and we hope to hear more of it - and see the pics!

    Edwin, you are a very naughty boy.

    The horse and the pussy cat went to sea
    'Cos they wanted to Sea the Stars
    Pussy took some money, and plenty of honey,
    But horse said 'Not enough for me stud fee!'

  48. BB - You, and most of the people who post here, have had an interesting life too.

    The sadness is that future generations may find it just that little bit more difficult to have what was given to me (us) on a plate.

  49. I have to agree with everybody's comments about Deb Orr - having praised her last week I couldn't make sense of her today either.

    Either the sub, or her, or someone somewhere, was on a some kind sauce that was not HP - nor Sheffield Relish.

  50. I will never forget one of the cartoons from the miner's strike era, where a miner who was in the pub having just accepted his voluntary redundancy had his little lad pulling on his shirt and saying "Dad, how much did you sell my future for again?"

    Problem is, we are not the ones who have sold our kids' futures. They have been stolen - fucking smash and grab. End of. Sigh.

  51. Thauma - Talking about Nags at stud.

    I once had a conversation with an Irish tramp who told me the tale of the terrible misuse of stable girls in Eire.

    For once the story didn't involve a catholic priest.

    The story was that innocent young stable maids were used to help out when the stallion became blinded by his own must.

    I was`reliably informed that when the stallion at stud, mounted the mare but, could not through the urgency of his lust find the dear ladies orifice......the wench was required to take the stallions engorged member on her shoulder and guide him home..??

    True or False?

  52. deano, if you want a factual and also 'literary' account of a mare being covered, I can recommend Tom Wolfe's novel, 'A man in Full' (Chapter 12 - The Breeding Barn). It's very descriptive and pretty graphic. Have you read it, thauma?

    btw, it's also a great book.


  53. Have I never told you my most favourite post strike story in all the world - it involves the young green HR person interviewing the miners at the return to work meeting after the dispute of 84?

    When Hank argues for the contribution of trade unions to our progress I have to agree.

    I was an early (1947) beneficiary of the 1944 Education Act ( albeit an 11+ failure) and all that followed. But I had such wonderful second chance benefits later on my life. - You can safely assume I am pro trades unions and would rather be dead than a scab.

  54. deano, BB,

    have you ever read Seamus Milne's 'The enemy within' about the Miners strike?

    It would turn your hair grey reading about the sheer criminality of Thatcher's Govt in relation to the miners.

    It's essential if utterly nauseating reading.

  55. Scherfig - cheers Bro I've Amazoned a second-hand copy for about £2.42 - but then I was conned into a postage bill greater than the book price.......these things happen to innocents.............. and drunks.

    Regards Bro - much impressed with your last suggested bench.

  56. Your Grace


    No I haven't. I will have to get a copy of it.

  57. Deano's reference to the Education Act reminds me of the Charles Causley poem, which is, I am sure the most beautiful to mention the Act:

    A Ballad for Katharine of Aragon

    As I walked down by the river
    Down by the frozen fen
    I saw the grey cathedral
    With the eyes of a child of ten.

    O the railway arch is smoky
    As the Flying Scot goes by
    And but for the Education Act
    Go Jumper Cross and I.

    But war is a bitter bugle
    That all must learn to blow
    And it didn't take long to stop the song
    In the dirty Italian snow.

    O war is a casual mistress
    And the world is her double bed
    She has a few charms in her mechanised arms
    But you wake up and find yourself dead.

    The olive tree in winter
    Casts her banner down
    And the priest in white and scarlet
    Comes up from the muddy town.

    O never more will Jumper
    Watch the Flying Scot go by
    His funeral knell was a six-inch shell
    Singing across the sky.

    The Queen of Castile has a daughter
    Who won't come home again
    She lies in the grey cathedral
    under the arms of Spain.

    O the Queen of Castile has a daughter
    Torn out by the roots.
    Her lovely breast in a stone cold chest
    Under the farmers' boots.

    Now I like a Spanish party
    And many O many the day
    I have watched them swim as the night came dim
    On Algeciras Bay.

    O the high sierra was thunder
    And the seven-branched river of Spain
    Came down to the sea to plunder
    The heart of the sailor again.

    O shall I leap in the river
    And knock upon paradise door
    For a gunner of twenty-seven and a half
    And a queen of twenty-four?

    From the almond-tree by the river
    I watch the sky with a groan
    For Jumper and Kate are always out late
    And I lie here alone.

  58. deano, I hope it'll be worth the money. Apart from horses having sex you'll learn a bit about American prisons, Stoic philosophy (Epictetes) and real estate development. And have a laugh, too.

  59. Duke - no I ain't read it my friend.

    The angst and the hurt and the clouding of my eye and the premature greying of my hair at the utter destruction and wasteland in my homeland created by Twatcher meant that I have been slow to move on.

    Do not be mistaken - I never claimed to be a miner - merely the son, grandson and nephew and cousin of one of the lads.

    "Time passes...." as I think Dylan Thomas put it in under milk wood. So I will put your suggested book on my Xmas list - my new friend.


  60. Excellent stuff, Edwin. Thx for that.

  61. Oh I did so like that Edwin - thank you.

    Flying Scotsman built at Doncaster - a long spit and two quick wanks from where I now am.

    Warm Regards.

  62. TECHNICAL ENQUIRY -If you get a "netbook" machine can you the connect it /them to a bigger screen??

    Me eye is starting to run the pixies altogether.

  63. Blair's bid for the EU Presidency is all but over, the Graun reports, as Merkel and Sarkozy fail to back him. His only significant supporter is Berlusconi.

    Says it all.

    And just to add to the chorus, very fine poem, Edwin. It's wistful elegiac mood reminded me of Brooke's

    "Stands the Church clock at ten to three
    And is there honey still for tea?"

  64. Poem was of a 'flying scot' - no mention on closer inspection of ......man.

    Night all.

    Thanks again Edwin - a delight.

  65. Cheers Hank - just the news I needed to round out a great day.

    "...still for tea" - Shropshire - War Poets??

  66. Deano - re netbooks

    Sadly not. But you get used to it really quickly.

    I have an Eee ("I'll 'ave an E please Bob") and the sharpness of the screen makes up for the fact that it is no bigger than a gnat's bollock.

    As I say - takes a bit of getting used to, but get used you will. I guarantee.

    Hank - excellent news about fuck-face - I mean Mr Blair.. oops. I will have to tell my hubby. He will be ecstatic! He has been mithering about it for weeks now.

  67. Rupert Brooke, deano. "The Old Vicarage, Grantchester", written in 1912 but always reminds me of that innocence lost in a foreign field.

    The Old Vicarage, where he grew up, is now of course inhabited by another literary titan, Lord Archer of Pentonville.


  68. "As I say - takes a bit of getting used to, but get used you will. I guarantee.

    Babe - I don't quite have to, I'm a tramp with a Barclaycard, but I love you anyway.

    Double cheers Scorpio

    Night all ( and every single one of you)...

    Montana - please to enquire young miss - you got a coy KV's "a man without a country"

    ..mines going begging.

  69. Hi deano - yes, every netbook lets you plug in a bigger screen, plus keyboard and mouse if you like through USB. Any VGA screen you already have will do, up to whatever it can cope with. If it works with a PC or notebook, it will work with a netbook.

    My little Asus EEE 701 is hooked up to a 17in flatscreen and full keyboard when I use it at home.

    Great news on your dad's picture, too. I wish I had something like that for my immediate docker and bus-driver ancestors...

  70. Aha. My bad, Peter.

    I am to technology what Prescott is to ice dance, though...

  71. Thank you 4 that Peter J Jackson. Hope you enjoy UT as much as the rest of us who pose here do.


  72. BB - sweetchild you ain't that bad. No way.

  73. That's OK, BB - it's kind of been my living, although I'd much rather have been an academic historical researcher. That's what you get for choosing the science stream at 13 in an attempt to avoid intensive religious education.


  74. Thanks deano. I hope to post a bit more in future (and have invested in a 12-year-old Glenlivet to assist).

    Any technology questions answered, come one come all...

  75. ...(and have invested in a 12-year-old Glenlivet to assist)...

    Word to the wise, Peter. Don't mention that on Cif. You'll have the "sex-trafficker" lobby and the paediatrician-lynchers sending you abusive posts in BLOCK CAPS.

  76. Hehehehehe. Hank, your incore... incorgi...incourage... you're a right bugger!

    If it's scotch we're talking about, I love the Macallan, personally. Love the smoky-peatiness of it.

  77. Fine Soldier - I venture that you will enjoy:

    'invested in a 12-year-old Glenlivet to assist).

    albeit that fun here on an discordant evening, your bottle will be gone by seven. That said methinks you will have enjoyed it.

    You will, if perchance you still have a connection between your dick/toe/ear have fun here.

    I do hope so and that I have not sold you short.

    deano - open regards

  78. Hank; Glen says hi...


  79. Not sure "bugger" is the mot juste, BB!

  80. BB et al - fuck that for a game of soldiers I love 'em all.

    If it came from some peaty or heathery place and it was mixed with water - I was up for it...

  81. Tru dat, Hank. Ooops.

    Deano... nothing like a glass of the amber stuff with the smell of a peat fire in your nostrils.

    Anyhoo, this weird little bloke called Zebedee is telling me it's time for bed.

    Night night all xx

  82. "Glen says hi" - nice one, Peter!

    Anyway, quickly changing the subject, it's always good to see Cif giving a platform to vulnerable and neglected minorities like PNAC.

    Seriously, what purpose is served by inviting Robert fuckin Kagan to slag off Obama's foreign policy and stoke up paranoia about those damned Russkies and the mad Iranian ragheads?

    Kagan and his ilk are the shadowy powers behind a million deaths in Iraq, countless millions of deaths elsewhere in Washington's zone of influence since the Monroe Doctrine. They write Glenn Beck's scripts and dictate the op-ed policy of Murdoch's global press empire.

    Why does Cif give him, John Bolton and others like them the oxygen of publicity?

    It really does represent the lunatic aspect of liberal even-handedness.

  83. "The Old Vicarage, where he grew up, is now of course inhabited by another literary titan, Lord Archer of Pentonville.The Old Vicarage, where he grew up, is now of course inhabited by another literary titan, Lord Archer of Pentonville.

    What a hurt Hank. I would always have been chuffed to be hung for bribing a fellow prisoner to bugger or blade Geoffrey.

    Mary though - I would have innocently rubbed myself across her thighs and given her a chance to explain before...............I....

  84. Ah the fragrant Mary, deano. Never quite understood how he got sent down for perjury and she didn't.

    Anyway, I'll leave you to your reveries. Glad to hear your good news and catch up with you soon no doubt.

  85. Oh Mary my love as I slip slide around with ...you...as J B Priestly mighty just have...

    ....gosh there is the day after tomorrow to think about that....

    Annetan42 why are you ignoring my love??

  86. This comment has been removed by the author.

  87. This comment has been removed by the author.

  88. This comment has been removed by the author.