15 March 2010


Well, I think we all know what happened to Julius Caesar on this day back in 44 BC.  Apart from that, the most interesting (to me, anyway) things that have happened on this day were Columbus returning to Spain in 1493 after his first voyage and the first day of the first international test match in 1877, between England and Australia.  The only people born on this day that I've heard of are all Americans and I'm never too sure of whether anyone outside the US has heard of American slebs.  The ones I'm guessing many/most of you will be familiar with are; Mike Love of the Beach Boys (1941), Sly Stone (1944) and Ry Cooder (1947).  Terence Trent D'Arby was born in 1962.  Not sure how known he ever would have been outside the US, though.

I must say, I'm a bit disappointed to find that one of my two favourite days of the year has been such a boring one for most of the past 2054 years.


  1. From The Times Birthdays section:

    'Gavin Stamp, the architectural writer and historian, says the best thing about getting older is having a London Freedom Travel pass. “I use it the whole time, it is a joy,” he says. He is working on a book about lost Victorian Britain “and the wonderful buildings that have been destroyed”. He has little time for the “horrible celebrity cult and the fashion in modern architecture which have come together in the last couple of decades. I don’t think architects deserve knighthoods, let alone peerages”. He plans a quiet birthday “doing what I normally do, writing things and teaching”. RGT

    Birthdays today

    Lord Bernstein of Craigweil, chairman, Granada Group, 1979-96, 74; Isobel Buchanan, soprano, 56; Professor Sir James Dunbar-Nasmith, architect, 83; John Duttine, actor, 61; Sunetra Gupta, author, 45; Admiral Sir Raymond Lygo, aerospace, defence and industrial consultant, 86; Professor Joan Mitchell, economist, 90; Michael Moore, chairman, Which?, 1997-2008, and NSPCC, 1988-95, 74; Robert Nye, author and poet, 71; Ben Okri, novelist, 51; the Right Rev Michael Scott-Joynt, Bishop of Winchester, 67; David Wall, ballet master, English National Ballet, 64.'

    I remember Gavin Stamp coming to live in Glasgow and organising a meeting to protect what was left of Alexander 'Greek' Thompson's buildings. As he said. Thompson was one of the world's great architects, all his buildings are in Glasgow, yet successive councils cared not a toss.

    Happy Birthday Gavin - the Englishman who came to Glasgow and saved our heritage.

  2. Aggh I somehow put a p in his name! He is Thomson of course.

  3. Edwin,

    I remember Brian Sewell, the hilariously über-posh art critic, presenting a cracking little programme on "Greek" Thomson's St Vincent Street Free Church.

    I had no idea that it has the same UNESCO protected status as the Taj Mahal until the programme.

    Incidentally, you wouldn't happen to know who the poster is on CiF that takes the name of the main character of 'Ulysses' and the year the book is set? I have my suspicions.....

  4. Didn't Mr D'Arby make his name outside the US first? Mind you he then lost the plot rather,changed his name following a dream (!)to Sananda Francesco Maitreya and cut down on the shagabouttery for which he had a reputation. Not a bad voice, but as a talent not a patch on Sly Stone, who bettered Mr D'Arby not only musically but also in the debauchery and insanity stakes.Sly still pops up from time to time, promising new material and has done the (very) odd concert in the past decade, but last I heard had legal problems and was semi-reliant on welfare.
    For another great (er, not classing D'Arby as one but Stone is) who lost his way, look at Gil Scott-Heron, who this year reappeared from the wilderness of drugs and jail with a cracking album "I'm New Here", on which his voice oozes character and reflects his experiences.It's good, if a little short. Oh, and fact fans, Gil's dad played centre forward for both Celtic and then the much-missed Third Lanark (whose demise remains something of a scandal)

  5. Alisdair,

    Gil Heron, father of Gill Scott Heron was known as 'The black arrow' when he played for Celtic in the 1950's. As you correctly say, he then went on to Third Lanark, my Grandad's team, so he probably watched him.

    It would have been exceptionally unusual to see a Black player playing in the Scottish League in the 1950's.

  6. Aye,Duke. It kinda tickles me that you can draw a line or connection from Cathkin park straight to the Black Panthers

  7. Alisdair,

    I'd never thought about it like that! Mind you Third Lanark's full name- Third Lanark Rifle Volunteers brings to mind armed resistance.

  8. Sign your name across my heart
    I want you to be my baby...

    TTDA for the win! Only hit I remember him having over here, though. Didn't he used to be a boxer before he was a singer, or am I confusing him with Seal?

    Anyhoo, morning all. Skiving off today as the SS are coming round this afternoon to see the foster-son. Third social worker in three months - he hadn't even seen the second one for more than five minutes. God knows what they are up to but "organised" doesn't seem to fit the bill, quite.

  9. @Edwin Moore

    I believe Gavin Stamp is also 'Piloti' who writes the architectural column in 'Private Eye'.

  10. Morning all. Regional election first round results in.

    Epic tactical fail by the left in Languedoc. Possible textbook example of how not to counter a maverick independent.

    Georges Freche, former mayor of MTP, kicked out of the Socialist Party for making a series of Prince-Phillip-esque 'sensitive' remarks about residents of an algerian or jewish persuasion, rumoured to be a bully, most recently declared cheerfully that 97% of the electorate are 'idiots', stands as an independent with his own team 'Divers Gauche'.

    Greens, Left Front (Communist Party) and the official Soialist Party candidates decide that they don't have to co-operate to take him on. They get 8.4%, 8.1%, and 7% respectively, and fail to progress to the next round.

    The UMP (Tory) gets 20%, the NF gets 13% - they do progress to the next round.

    There will however be a left presence in the second round. Freche's list, who got nearly 38%.

    My understanding of how the results translate into seats is a but limited, but I think that this means the regional parliament will be made up of Freche's mob, the UMP and the NF. The Socialist Party won't have representation (after being the majority party last time). Unless they agree to join with Freche - the Greens have said this is out of the question, the PS are havering around.

    Oh, and to make it even worse, the UMP leader, Couderc, is apparently a 'fellow traveller' of the NF.

    Well done, everybody. Bloody well done. Gah.

  11. Oh, and watched the first film in the Millennium Trilogy (poss called 'Men who hate women' in English, rather than 'Girl with the Dragon Tattoo), which should be on general release in Blighty soon. Worth seeing - obviously the dense plotting has been cut down a lot, and some relationships sidelined, which leads to a slightly more 'direct' treatment, but it's well done, and Salander kicks arse. Quite literally.

  12. The French drive me to distraction with the splintering of the Left, frankly. There is no reason at all why, without a bit of common sense and pride-swallowing, they couldn't have formed a decent coalition and seen Sarko off at the last general election. But no. They each dig their heels in, true People's Front of Judea stylee, and screw the whole thing up.


    What was the overall result for the PS, Philippa? I caught the end of a show before a film on TV5 (very funny film if you get a chance to see it called Vilaine) and they were projecting a slim majority for the PS at the time - UMP second, FN third *spit*

  13. Note to Leni and Monkeyfish:
    (and anyone else who might have this problem)

    If you are still experiencing problems with sometimes not being able to comment, could you please e-mail me and let me know what is happening and what browser you use?

    I use Chrome and I've never had a problem with comments while using Chrome. Occasionally, when I hit the "Post Comment" button, it will give me an error message saying something to the effect of, "Unable to process your request", but the comment is still there in the box. If I hit "Post Comment" again, it always posts on the 2nd attempt. You might want to give Chrome a try. I've been quite pleased with it, myself. Very streamlined & easy to use. I gave Opera a try for a few days, but went back to Chrome.

    @Alisdair: I hadn't known any of that about TTD. As far as I knew, he just faded into oblivion. Had a look at his website. He's very, erm, interesting these days.

    and Wybourne: that particular poster seems incredibly familiar to me, too.

  14. Hi your Grace I missed that programme - Sewell is fearfully bigoted in all sorts of ways but also wonderful in others (I mind him escorting Anthony Blunt out of his house after the latter's exposure and beating off the press singlehandedly).

    The St Vincent St church is one of the world's great buildings, up there with the Temple of Nike on the Parthenon. I went to a concert there just before Christmas for the Medical Foundation Against Torture, and one of the singers said 'Why have I never heard about this place? It's perfect!'

    Ah that Leopold1904 - he's only there to annoy the cifmeisters!

    Do you know the only Thirds fan I know is Jack Maclean. They were quite well supported on the south side but in Townhead it was all of course Bears and Tims and a few Jags oddballs like me.

    God luck with SS BB.

    I joined the asylum march on Saturday at George Square - march estimate was 200, which means I know personally about 5% of those present - very low turnout alas. The people who have done most up there seem to be Church of Scotland and, odd though it may seem, the local police who work very hard in the area.

    I gather they don't see much of social services up there.

  15. BB - precis from the Graun here -
    PS 29.5%
    UMP 26.2%
    Greens 12.5%
    Fash 11.7%
    Commies 5.7%
    Turnout 46% - which is shockingly low.

    Nice pie chart and map here - Languedoc is the only mainland region to get its own colour (and 'MoDem' didn't even bother standing). Should be getting a fair bit of attention as the weird result...

    While there is a bit of 'People's Front of Judea' in the Left, they do have three rather reasonable blocs - PS, Front Gauche (Communists et al), and, arguably the Eco group. In most places 'Divers gauche' and 'extreme gauche' are the splitters, and they're tiny - the Languedoc result really was driven by personality politics. For example, their second lowest vote was 18% (in, I think, Alsace), everything else was over 25% (often, 35%) so the 7% result down here is a big f-ing kicking. Not that this is entirely their fault, if the voters are happy to go for a racist git who thinks theyre all idiots...

    Yes, the left would be stronger if the PS and PC joined up, but the PS is first anyway, and the PC is stronger and more cohesive than the 'far left' options in the UK, I think. They do have very different policy positions, it's not just 'my ball, my rules'...

  16. Gone very quiet round here.... Where is everyone?

  17. I was wondering that, jay...hope it wasn't my cackhanded attempt at french political analysis that has caused a whole-sale boycott...

  18. Jay,

    taking up on your point made about moderation on WADDYA. I hope this continues to run. The fact the discussion began at the weekend actually suits CiF as they can simply close the thread and move on to a new one on the Monday.

    Interesting that a lot of people I haven't seen complain about moderation before (SteveHill etc) have taken up the baton. I Hope it continues.

  19. Philippa,

    thanks for the rundown on the French election.

  20. Duke
    You,re right a lot of people are complaining about
    moderation on Cif.And a lot of people also want a certain ennobled gentleman to reconsider his decision to part company with Cif!!

  21. philippa

    The left seems divided against itself everywhere in Europe.

    Ides of March

    Whom could we most usefully assassinate? Would have to be someone with power who would not become political martyr and yet whose end would precipitate change.

  22. yr grace - ta, j'essai bien...stevehill does stand up and say 'oi' quite a bit, I've noticed, although usually on the thread in question. that kind of stand may not be very visible after the fact, for obvious reasons...

    annoyingly, after I asked for someone who knows more than me to look into the languedoc result, jess said that agnes poirier will be doing it. am bookmarking evidence of freche's past words in preparation...

    thing is, it's more complicated thann him just being a git
    1) headline: freche calls algerians 'subhuman'
    2) reaction: he's a racist!
    3) rationalisation (from freche's supporters): what he said was, algerians / french-algerians who supported france in the algerian war were sub-human - he's being all lefty and anti-imperialist, see?
    4) comeback: then he should have talked about conflicting loyalties - if your epithet of choice is 'sub-human', you are going to look like a racist - plus, he has form
    5) further rationalisation: he meant 'sub-human' as in 'lacking humanity / solidarity with fellow members of a group'
    6) further comeback: ha, right. check his record.

    I'd put money on the debate not getting past step 2, meself.

    A lot of local shops are carrying a book about him at the minute. can't remember the exact title, but it's basically "he's a son of a bitch, but he's our son of a bitch". Noticeabl it took the economic downturn for the PS to feel confident enough to kick him out as they thought his support would drop off - clearly they didn't guess that one right...

  23. Yeh thanks for the French election stuff Phillipa. 46% is pretty poor and we are getting that way in Scotland - the turnout for the Holyrood election was 51% of which the SNP got a majority of 1 over Labour, so the horsetraders keep it all running. The Scottish Tories have played the system neatly and as they crow regularly have managed to get the SNP to pass Tory pledges!

    Welcome to the democratic future.

    As for fracture on the left, well the asylum seeker demo I was on illustrated it well: there were tiny contingents from Solidarity and the SSP, but they all hate each other, there was a Militant seller (come through a time hole from the 70s), there were people from even smaller groups. I was never a CPGB man but at least they got the crowds out. As Galloway observed, the Glasgow North east election showed just how far the tide has gone out for the left.

  24. Channel 4 Despatches, 8.00pm " The children of Gaza".

  25. Leni - splitting for 'people's front of judea' reasons pisses me off, andd that is a big problem - i think booting freche was wholly justified, and while the lack of cooperation against him was possibly a fail, I don't think the booting itself can be seen as part of that problem...

    anyway - it's complicated, which is why i'm not overly hopeful that agnes p will nail it. if she actually focusses on the languedoc, rather than the results in general...

  26. ooh, open thread up on age of criminal responsibility - this could turn nasty...

  27. Trends here in Wales suggest gains for the Tories here . People have either given up or are casting about for something different - very few seem clear about what it is they are looking for.

    The political vacuum is being filled with racism and scapegoating.

  28. Philippa,

    the legacy of the Algerian Civil War is still a running sore in French politics evidently.


    the question increasingly is what should we replace "Liberal Democracy" with?

    I use "Liberal Democracy" in the context of the Democracy that won the cold war. The "Liberal Democracy" that has concentrated both political and economic power into the hands of a small elite whilst promoting apathy through consumption. It would make a good article.


    thanks for that. I did say I'll start posting my rubbish again if they have a full and frank discussion about moderation.

  29. I cant say i have noticed modding being any worse lately, to be honest. I dont know why its back on the agenda for so many people. Have you lot found modding worse lately? Maybe its just me, i've become too anodyne in my old age to be worth modding...

  30. Phillipa,

    My heart snak when I saw that Agnes was going to write an article on French politics, I seem to remember her writing about the joys of foie de gras and how French women are thineer than British women despite stuffing their faces with butter? Hardly the best credentials for writing a political analysis? Could you not write an article yourself (I'm sure it would be better)


  31. Oops sorry about typos the edit function did not appear and it posted all by itself (well, perhaps it was my fault and I pressed submit but I thought edit came first??/)

  32. Jay I haven't noticed that modding is worse.

    A few WDYWTTA threads ago MonsieurLeJongleur threw out a challenge and wrote a short comment regarding cheese and then asked people to report abuse. His aim was to see whether the mods deleted anything, regardless of what it was, just because 'reported abuse' had been used.

    I did take up the challenge and reported abuse about the cheese comment (I cannot remember exactly which option I used) but I wrote a commentary as to why the comment should be moderated....and nothing happened!

    Except now the mods have me listed as a kooky catwoman type....someone to be ignored at all times! :0)

  33. You give them too much credit cordelia, they dont have the systems to check who is reporting abuse, you dont even have to be registered or logged in. For all they know, there really is some old catwoman that just sits there all day reporting abuse. They literally wouldnt even know.

    I really think you should have to be logged in to report abuse so that they can see who is abusing the abuse function, and then abuse those people by not letting them report abuse anymore. A nice circle of abuse ending in good debate.

  34. Montana

    I will remember Peter Graves in the original Mission Impossible - great series

  35. Maybe the Guardian have farmed the moderating
    function out to countries all over the world.
    Which may explain the inconsistancies bearing in mind language and cultural differences etc.
    Bring it back to Blighty that,s what i say:.)
    (probably wouldn,t make a jot of difference

  36. Cordelia - my knowledge of French politics is very limited, both in terms of background, structure, and the implication of current events. I can mouth off about particular specific issues but contextualising them (and being comprehensive) would be a nightmare. I'd look like a gimp - I'd be a gimp, in fact. Which is why I just witter on here (!). I might manage to be better than agnes, but that would be like saying I'm better at playing cricket than Snoopy. You actually wouldn't want either of us in the team...

  37. PhilippaB

    Apologies for 'butting in' but you could still
    write a subjective article based on your own
    insights,experiences,feed-back from other French
    people as well as specific details about the
    French political scene.

    In my experience so-called experts tend to lose
    the ordinary punter with too much technical
    jargon and too many intricate details.
    Obviously up to you though!

  38. Paul - perhaps! If I can work out what's going on a bit better, I could try doing something for UT2 - have french lesson with apolitical teacher (but she used to work with Freche) and conv.ex. with more political (although deeply disenchanted) friend later in the week, and the second round is Sunday. So I will see if I can organise my thoughts a bit better.

    One thing that's struck me is the plurality - after the Euros (coupla' PS, coupla' UMP, a green and a fash) and now (random left groupings, again with the fash) - is it good or bad that the NF is normalised? That kind of thing...

  39. Bah. Poirier's piece just looks like the news item from earlier made a bit more 'commenty'. Ah well...

  40. No it wasn't your cackhandedness at all, Philippa, I had to disappear to do the washing and talk to the SS - new woman seems great and we get on well, so hopefully that will be a way forward. Most of the problems with foster-boy stem from his unwillingness to go to school except when he feels like it, so we have a bit of an uphill struggle with that, really.

    Glad to see the PS have got a first round majority.

  41. Local elections have little impact. Valley here (former mining) , 6 villages with about 6.5 thousand people. Devasted by mine closures. Many on benefit. Lousy public transport. EU grants 'reviving' area thru Tourism ! Mountain bike trails on Forestry land - Forestry branch of Assembly. 6o,ooo visitors pa - almost no impact on local economy/ Minimum wage jobs - catering etc. Some grant funding support.

    Over 100 wind turbines across valley top in pipeline - new planning guide lines forbid any enquiry. 'Community benefit' to be apportioned via third sector guidelines. Formerly British Steel big supporters of CAB etc - this money gone.
    Services diminishing. Local hospital - PFI.

    You all know the story.
    No longer any central intellectual/political gathering places for discussion. Unions long gone. traditional left split between Nulab, Plaid and apathy. It is about economic models which exclude people - they don't understand them .

    Some people still fighting 'class war' without understanding new rules of engagement. Some become easy targets for BNP or similar. Gives focus for confusion and anger. Under which banner can the left unite?

  42. "Under which banner can the left unite?"

    Good question. I wish I had an answer.

    I have just posted on Seumas's BA thread that the Labour party died on 19th May 1994, and why should he be surprised at this bunch of neo-con cheerleaders supporting their filthy rich backers?

    Same old same old. Thatcher-lite.




    (again, sorry)

  45. Yes. Have been greatly enjoying a debate about debunking gender / orientation stereotypes on Waddya. It was a very good debate. This has now stopped. This is just something of a disappointment. Am going to open a bottle of something and read about violence.

  46. OK, everyone gerrof here, and start listening to Amartya Sen's Demos lecture on power and capability, being streamed live on CiF!

    (To declare an interest, he was Master of my old college, and I sat next to him at a dinner once)

  47. http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/interactive/2010/mar/15/amartya-sen-demos-lecture-power-capability

    he's just stopped talking, it's now a discussion with Shirley Williams inter alia.

  48. Cheers, Lavartis.

    And hello everyone!

  49. Bugger. Was having a rant about Oradour and have missed that, Lavartis. Is it available as a podcast?

  50. Ides of March

    Whom could we most usefully assassinate? Would have to be someone with power who would not become political martyr and yet whose end would precipitate change.


  51. Has anyone else read the sickening piece in the Observer about Blair's religious campaign in the US and Canada? How long before he moves to Georgia?

  52. No idea, BB. Try Demos's own website.

    I went to Oradour once when I was about 13 or 14. Not an experience easily forgotten. Almost complete silence, and painted on a wall - SOUVIENS-TOI.

  53. Just followed you there, thauma. Nauseating. But the US is the big market for this kind of crap, unfortunately.

    Still listening to Sen et al.

  54. "Ides of March

    Whom could we most usefully assassinate? Would have to be someone with power who would not become political martyr and yet whose end would precipitate change.


    Ed Balls.

    (Unless i was imagining it, there was a serious suggestion in todays Graun that Miliband and Balls would be competing for the labour leadership. Ed Balls. Is there a single voter in the country who would vote for Ed Balls to run the country? He's a uniquely unpleasant, disturbing little man. Even if it was a toss up between him and Hazel Blears it would be a close call.)

  55. Jay, I couldn't vote for any of them.

    The apathy Philippa's describing in France will likely be mirrored here.

    I will vote. I'm not sure for whom yet. I was going to go Lib Dem, but Clegg disgusted me the other day by praising Thatcher, so it might have to be Green.

  56. Ha! Adam Smith just got a mention!

    Fascinating debate...

    I've always kind of wanted to adopt Amartya Sen. He just looks like brilliant Grandpa material.

  57. thauma - the poirier thread has got little or no traffic (understandable, as it's basically the news item from earlier, with 'i think' added once or twice) - but she had survey figures that 30% of people abstaining said that this would be as a protest, rather than pure apathy. But I understand also from a friend that they do not count spoiled ballots (votes blanches) here - so if you bother to cast a vote for none of the above, it isn't actually counted. If they had to read those out, like in the UK, we might have a better idea of whether this is one or t'other.

    They get two bites at the cherry, remember - although that can screw you (viz the Chirac / Le Pen presidential run-off a coupla' years back). If all the left vote transfers to Freche, he could end up with 60% of the vote down here...

    Also, someone on the poirier thread was saying there's been nothing on the news about the elections. So clearly I imagined last night when live coverage was on the equivalent of BBC 1, BBC2 and ITV, and seeing Aubrey v Durand, and Le Pen (v himself), earlier in the week - I think it was a series, each party got on. The coverage has been pretty good, think i...

  58. Gaza programme on channel 4 now, will no doubt cause some constructive and polite debate tomorrow.

  59. @JayReilly It's making me cry. I have been on Lebanon thread which is ridiculous. I didn't say much as others have said it and there are the usual Israeli govt workers on there. I did suggest moving Israel to California. It would be useful.

  60. He's a sweetie, Philippa. He was universally admired at college. Great sense of humour, too.

    His rather strange voice is the result of a virulent mouth cancer as a teenager; oncological surgery in East Bengal in the '50's was not particularly advanced.

  61. "It's making me cry."

    I was just about to say, its pretty tough viewing.

  62. Ah, Lavartis - actually that reassures me, I was worried that it could be that he was getting ill.

  63. Didn't know that about the spoiled ballots in
    France, Philippa ... interesting.

  64. @JayReilly I can't believe how articulate the kids are. Gaza is a prison, a total prison. Tomorrow CIF will feature some Israeli apologist saying they made it all up.
    Gotta go and cry

  65. thaume - that was in the french part of the conv.ex. so i may not have got it exactly right, but she was miming too...

  66. Who is "offski"?

    Some very amusing posts on waddya, almost *too* amusing, like i should recognise him/her by another name...

    Anyone guesses?

  67. Can't bear to look at the Gaza programme tonight. Totally selfish I know, but I'm in 'on leave from work' mode and will have to defer watching it until later in the week.

  68. Jay

    Spotted offski as a contender the other day - I'm not naming names though.

  69. @Ms Chin: I have struggled.I can't do it. It is utterly obscene.

  70. Ian Duncan Smith on Analysis appears to be arguing for ... not sure, some kind of Huxleyesque maternal engineering to improve children's lives.

    TVU player has kicked back in - Gaza programme just started (for me)

  71. " Tomorrow CIF will feature some Israeli apologist saying they made it all up."

    Yep, hordes of them.

  72. Woah. Ten minutes nearly did me in, and I'm just watching on f-ing TV. Living it must be heartbreaking.

  73. Have just had a peek at Waddya. Intriguing post by NapoleonKaramatzov @1.28.

    I'm also suspicious of a directly elected upper house in case our political system turns into the farce that is the American one (not that it's far off today).

    Bishops out - yes. Political appointees are obviously a serious problem (see Ides of March). Inherited privilege goes against the grain.

  74. Philippa (or, indeed, anyone): forgive my ignorance, but what is a 'conv.ex.'?

  75. There is something about Ed Balls that is disturbing and disturbed - something very grubby

  76. sorry, am a bit 'all over' at the mo - 'conversation exchanges' are all the rage for the poverty-stricken - half the session is the french person patiently correcting the anglo's awful french, half is the english person stammering a lot when asked in-depth questions about english grammar by their french counterpart who was clearly fibbing when they said "ah, je parle qu'un petit peu, c'est mauvais..."

    so 'conv.ex.'. i do like my wordplay (quiproquo)

  77. yes - Ed Balls does always look like he's sweating uncomfortably. I mean, he should be, but still...

  78. MsR, Jay & Philippa

    If it is such heartbreaking viewing, then I can't watch it alone. It requires friends with shoulders to cry on, cushions to sob into, and stiff brandies all round to soften the edges of the reality.

  79. fuck me, i think gollum's just turned up on waddya.

    any of the local LOTR-ers want to 'fess up?

  80. any of the local LOTR-ers want to 'fess up?

    'Tweren't us, no indeed, preciousss. We hasnt got that far into the thread yet, no we hasnt.

    And now we is off to bed, to dream of the Precious and strangling little hobbity throats.

    Sleep tight.

  81. that's actually really creepy...

    heh heh

    night night

  82. No, Philippa, that's thauma at her best!

    Night to thauma & the hound, who will hunt down the nasty little hobbitses for her ..


    You ok?

  83. well, that confused me - crud on screen - tok a while to realise that didn't say 'goat'.

    what's wrong with goats?

    wiv der ickle hooves...

  84. Missed the Gaza prog as foster-son's mum came over for a chat. Sounds like it is something I might not be up to watching at the moment. Can't bear kids suffering. :(

  85. This comment has been removed by the author.

  86. Blood pressure, Philippa, blood pressure.

    i subscribe to the view that we exist in different universes which somehow interlock - communication between them frequently happens.

  87. Big breath, Philippa, then an armagnac. That'll do the trick :o)

  88. This comment has been removed by the author.

  89. Philippa

    As for fashion sense, if I went shopping with one or two of my gay friends, I'd end up down Soho trying things on in those weird fetish shops that they're into ..

  90. if I went with mine, i'd look like pippi sodding longstocking.

    and they'd be in tweed. that'd learn 'em...

  91. Where's Hank btw? Hope you're practising your dance steps for the Sheffield bash, Mr Scorpio, I need a soul partner to counter those metalheads.

    Ah well, time for bed.

    I'm internet-free for a couple of days (unless I find half an hour going spare in the morning) so see y'all later.

  92. Bit off current topic but 'fetish' reminded me - I know a guy who makes a living building coffee tables which convert to a form of rack - for those without enough space for a dungeon. He does rather well out of it.

    Idea for a social enterprise perhaps.

  93. Philippa

    Tweed? A vision of loveliness, no doubt, but hardly fits the gay stereotype.

    *ducks, runs across room & heads for stairs*

  94. Blimey, Leni - the conversation has taken a turn away from the mammary-obsessed 'debate' from the male UTers of late.

  95. MsChin - you're thinking of this in a worryingly gendered fashion... I did mention Radcliffe Hall, remember!

    Leni - the enterprise opportunities catering for the non-vanilla are indeed significant. that film about boots is a prime example. will suggest that to carpenter mate, she's getting bored just making regular furniture...

    (you'd have to be very careful with the sanding though. splinters. eep)

  96. 'Idea for a social enterprise perhaps'.

    Mmm, marketing potential to anti-bankers revolutionaries too, so definitely social enterprise.

  97. Philippa

    Splinters should be optional - some may prefer them to a smooth, sanded finish.

  98. Wasn't it in Wales that the rozzers busted that dungeon brothel the other day? I seem to recall reading about that.

  99. I was wrong - it was Devon. http://www.thisisplymouth.co.uk/news/Police-raid-suspected-brothel-South-Hams/article-1873114-detail/article.html

  100. BB - heard that on the Now Show - the 'dungeon' was on the first floor, in the smallest bedroom.

    that's not really how I'd interpret 'dungeon'.

    I mean, not meaning to be overly traditionalist, or discriminate against rooms on floors other than a basement level...

    that's just how I see it. dungeon? downstairs. if a dungeon wants to be upstairs, y'know, it's going to have to expect to be looked at funny.

  101. mschin - very good, I was missing the much needed S&M angle.

    and good point - where are all the boys?

    in bed thinking of tits, i presume


  102. Or having nightmares about Anne Widdy suffocating them, Philippa.

    And I must go to bed - things to do in the morn.

  103. "if a dungeon wants to be upstairs, y'know, it's going to have to expect to be looked at funny."

    Made me LOL :o)

  104. If the google ads on CiF are specific to areas or posts, what about the job ads?

    Why do I keep getting the job ad for operatives at MI6? Are they trying to tell me I'm in the wrong job?:p

  105. BB - heh heh, sorry, was reading Natasha's column on trans issues earlier, must have been channelling more than one of the usual suspects...

    MI6? I'm still getting Forex trading and the Expat Savings Guide... peh. will just have to straight to the site, then [winks]

  106. OK me darlings. Kisses to you all. Time for bed for me xx

  107. 'Night all. May not be around too much this week.There's a little equine action that appears to be about to begin in Gloucestershire that might have prior calls upon my attention...

  108. BB Maybe they've found a traitor in their ranks and they want you to prosecute him?

    /I'll get me tin-foil hat and coat.

  109. What's happened to Andrew Brown - no posts since the infamous RC abuse one

  110. Leni - he's no doubt sitting at home wondering how he can top it. Watch this space, kids. Get ready to hide under the table...