26 June 2010


Letter from the Front by Alexander Laktionov

History is a gallery of pictures in which there are few originals and many copies.
Alexis de Tocqueville


  1. Spike:

    From last night.

    I'm late for work. Yes I am having a rough time at the moment, yes, I was pissed last night, but that doesn't invalidate my argument as Montana states.

    I wasn't playing the 'class card' at all. The argument stinks.

  2. Heyhabib:

    Once heard, the 4 Last Songs are never forgotten, you will seek them in your dreams and then be transported to another plane when you catch them, quite by accident again when you're least expecting it.

    I'm glad you liked them. ;)

  3. Morning all!

    Loved this posted on the Rutherford thread
    "Science doesn't know everything!"
    "Well, science knows it doesn't know everything, otherwise it would stop."

  4. " George Bernard Shaw: It is impossible for an Englishman to open his mouth without making some other Englishman hate or despise him."

    Nice to be away from that...

    Lurking last night while doing some cooking for the week, hope the er debaters are feeling better this am !. Watched a great TV5 documentary on Mers el Kebir, which for those not aware was in 1940 when the brits sank some of the french fleet at anchor.

    Cool editorial on the football and germanophobia,and GGD et al on form on the Adrian Pabst thread.

    Lovely day, off to the market .


  5. Morning all

    Gorgeous day...off out with a few old mates from the class war of 84/85 to relive the battle of june 18th. Will get drunk, weep and laugh a lot.

    " George Bernard Shaw: It is impossible for an Englishman to open his mouth without making some other Englishman hate or despise him."

    Too true....

  6. Morning all.

    sheff - have a great day.

  7. frog2,

    Mer-el-Kebir. A classic example of realpolitik. Although the attack was justified in terms that it was vital that the French fleet did not fall into German hands post-fall, it was as much a message to the world (esp USA) that Britain was prepared to fight on.

    De Gaulle, aware the attack was going to happen absented himself from London, going to Glasgow to inspect the remnants of the French fleet that had gone over to the Free French on the Clyde.


    from last night, I just missed you. You were bang on about supporting England. Don't get me wrong, I hope you get gubbed but the teeth gnashing and self guilt displayed ATL and BTL on the Guardian football site is laughable.

    Who cares if people get the St Georges flag out, paint their faces and get behind the national team? You should see it here, everywhere and I mean everywhere is bright orange. And there's no navel gazing about identity and xenophobia etc etc. The Dutch are getting behind their team with no sneery remarks about chavs and underclass.

    The Graun attittude as ever perceives popular support for England the same way they were totally convinced the 'underclasses' were going to vote en masse for the BNP. And look what happened there.

    You'll be delighted to know the Dutch to a man are behind England. I'm 100% in the minority ;)

  8. Your Grace
    Who cares if people get the St Georges flag out, paint their faces and get behind the national team?

    The daft get ups are the thing I like best about it. And the collective happiness - short lived as it may prove to be. Its the only time people get to feel any solidarity with each other these days. Perhaps thats why the popular support is ridiculed - they're afraid people might get a taste for it and we can't have that can we - much too dangerous.

  9. Frog2

    "Lovely day, off to the market ."

    I hate you.


    One of the things I miss the most about living in France is shopping at the market.

    My favourite market (well, the favourite market that I know) is in Royan in the Charente Maritime. Beautiful kind of shell-shaped building with an absolutely stunning array of produce - open every day too.

    Pic here

    and here

  10. Sheff

    "Gorgeous day...off out with a few old mates from the class war of 84/85 to relive the battle of june 18th. Will get drunk, weep and laugh a lot."

    You could start up an Orgreave re-enactment society, like the old civil war re-enactments. Could be quite a tourist attraction too, and bring some money into the village.

    In fact, I started posting this almost in a jokey way, but the idea is germinating. A museum of the mines and the strike, a tourist attraction, re-enactments etc. OK, it might be seen as some as "disneyfying" a very serious period in our social history, but then why the hell not? If it will generate some jobs and money for the area? School parties could go on visits, and it could teach people of the younger generations about trades unionism....

    Another one of my lunatic brain-waves but who knows...

    Have a fab day, anyway. :o)

  11. I can't read any of the Guardian's World Cup coverage. It all seems to have a subtle undercurrent of disdain. That fucking Patrick Blower cartoon of tattooed neanderthals for example, or that pointless video the other day where they went out and asked a load of foreigners about what they thought of the squad, and then the English in general, almost as if they were inviting the bigots of other nations to confirm how ghastly and insular we all are.

    Please. Fuck. Off.

  12. @La Rit

    You wrote:

    You are imposing your nice middle/upper class judgements on female sex-workers

    and later talked about me "retiring" (your inverted commas) in Paris with a trust fund (WTF?).

    If you weren't attempting to play a class card, I'd really like to know what that was about.

    I have certain strong opinions on harm prevention/reduction in sex work. I now realise there's no point in attempting a reasoned discussion on this subject with you, Montana and Andysays, since in return, I've been accused of "soothing my conscience" (not sure why I'd need to, I've never used the professional services of a sex worker), been told to fuck off, been told I apparently use women "to wank into", and you personally equated my saying informed adults had the right to decide if they wanted to sell sex with condoning the sexual abuse of children.

    You were all very much playing the man, not the ball, so I see no reason to continue the argument. Let's drop it.

    However, you personally trying to label me as middle/upper class in such a disparaging way rankles, especially since it's bollocks. I'd like you to think about that. We've always got on pretty well in the past - indeed, we seem to be on the same side on many issues - and I think it'd be a pity to open hostilities now.

  13. BB:

    "In fact, I started posting this almost in a jokey way, but the idea is germinating. A museum of the mines and the strike, a tourist attraction, re-enactments etc. OK, it might be seen as some as "disneyfying" a very serious period in our social history, but then why the hell not? If it will generate some jobs and money for the area? School parties could go on visits, and it could teach people of the younger generations about trades unionism...."

    You could get a government grant perhaps...

  14. Wow you have one early night and miss all the fun. ;)

    Philippa that quote if from a great bit of stand up from Dara o Briain, get in the fucking sack.

    I haven't read any of the Guardians coverage of the World Cup or in any other paper really, I'm in it to watch the games not read some ponce agonise over their national identity.

    I am really excited for the match tomorrow (but then I am excited about Dr Who tonight so that probably doesn't mean much) I so hope it isn't a giant let down.

    Oh and if I ever do make it to a UT meet up remind me not to let Spike buy me a drink. ;)

  15. Sheff,

    enjoy your day and your memories of Orgreave.

    Don't stand in a group outside in the sun enjoying your drink though. You'll get clobbered by the bussed in Met and the CCTV images will be subsequently manipulated to make it look as if you and your friends kicked off first.


    that Patrick Blower cartoon was jaw dropping. It had Islington contempt all over it.

  16. @BB

    The solidarity for the Miner's Strike from other countries would make interesting material for an article or two.

    At one time during the strike, I was at the Fête de l'Humanité, the great annual French Communist Pary jamboree (perhaps more about it later - it's huge fun and very interesting, and everyone should visit it at least once in their lives)...
    Anyway, I was there with a mate and we had a beer at a stand of one of the British communist parties. When we realised they'd just been sitting there, we took their strike collection tins and moved out into the crowds heading back and forth in the entrance to the Cité Internationale. There, we started shaking the tins and yelling, "Support the British Miners on strike against Thatcher!"
    We raised 700 pounds in an hour. The CP guys were gobsmacked. We wrote down the best slogans for them to shout and left them to carry on. They couldn't believe the level of awareness of the strike and how much support there was for the British miners in France.

    You might call it the last of the great proletarian causes célèbres in Western Europe and it inspired a lot of people.

  17. Christ, has anyone else come across 27b/6?
    It is real world (ish) comedic genius.
    This handling of a 'client' had me roaring, while his dealings with a distressed cat-lover is good too...the creator is a satirist (or more strictly speaking has become one),but his exchanges are for real: one that he had with the Australian police got him into hot water.
    Going to be occupied the rest of today:it's plate day here at Newcastle, so I'm going to imperil my bank balance, as is my wont on a Saturday,backing three from the card: Jonny Mudball in the 2.30 (Seb Sanders in fine form) and Camerooney in the 3.40 (on something of a streak at the mo) and in the plate itself, another Seb ride, which performed well in the Chester Cup,Mamlook (3.05). At least two of those to place for a profit,but I'm hopeful. Wish me luck (or not).

  18. In fact, that's an idea. Why not all meet up at the Fête de l'Humanité in September? It's always the second weekend in September - this year the 10, 11, 12. You can camp there and I can put some people up if they don't mind the sofa and floor.

    There's food from all over France and the world, lots of live music (I'll let you know the programme when I have it - Manu Chao was the star act the other year), debates, fairground rides, stands selling books, clothing, merchandising for your favourite left-wing organisations and charities, and lots and lots of bars.

    Over half a million people visit over the weekend. It's in Le Bourget, just outside Paris. Anyone interested?

    And Jenn, I'll let all you women buy me the drinks so you don't feel coerced. :-)

  19. Likin BB's Living Museum idea. How about calling a section, 'a taste of things to come' we could have footage of the poll tax riots on a projected loop, mounds of rubbish piled in the streets, (although it would be mounds of recycling today) soup kitchens on the streets and paupers graves. (Several people were burried at the councils expense here last year)

    Other rides or attractions?

  20. BB

    There is no Orgreave battle site, it was levelled years ago & is being redeveloped as an advanced manufacturing site. The whole landscape has been changed. Orgreave isn't so much a village as a whole area.

    As to renactment *shudders*. Local people here took part in the confrontation, I don't think they'll necessarily want to re-live it.

  21. Re: yesterday’s thread –

    Sex workers: –

    I think in the main and throughout history prostitution has been exploitative.
    I suspect that for the vast majority it still is.

    However I am prepared to accept that whereas most women would find the work difficult possibly emotionally damaging (I certainly would), just as I accept that there are women who do not have a very strong maternal instinct, I also accept that some women may well find it is a lucrative career.. We are all individuals.

    I do not consider such women sluts any more than I consider a doctor who chooses to only take private patients is a slut.

    I would question the values of both though.

    In the end our relationships (all of them, sexual, social, professional) should be based on something other than economic considerations. But currently that’s not the real world is it?

    One day perhaps…

    @Hank excellent post at 02:11 this morning- couldn’t have put it better myself. :-)

    Back to finishing last nights (this morning's?) thread now.

    Then off flat hunting.

    See you all later!

  22. Spike - nice idea! and I'm going to add that to my (limited) reading list, after signally failing to find anything interesting about Paris Match (DB says Marianne is good - do you know it?). Will certainly think about that (don't camp though - bagsy sofa?)

    saw in their history section that they were set up by 'Jaures' - presume same bloke behind Place Jean Jaures in MTP (there's a lycee as well) - statue and everything.

  23. @Checkov. Your name is green cos it's a link you have visited. To do a link. Start with the you tube page you want to link to. Copy the url from the nav bar. Go to any Cif page. Write what you want to be the link text in the comments box, highlight this text, click the link button and paste th elink in, hit OK. do NOT hit Post Comment! Type the rest of your post, you can also use the italic and bold formatting keys. Ctrl-A to select the whole post, and Ctrl-X to cut it. Come here and Ctrl-V the lot in the blogger comment box.

    I'll be expecting some choice choons this eve! : )

  24. MsChin

    As I said, to begin with it was a tongue-in-cheek comment, but as I thought about it, it suddenly occurred to me that, without it being a "theme park"-type thingy, it could certainly become a living museum of miners' lives and socialist struggle. There is a whole generation now - my son's age - who will regard it in the same way some people regard the Troubles through what they learnt in their GCSE. It has to be more than that; the political landscape has changed so much in a generation, but the foundations on which trades unionism were built are still there.

    Of course local people are probably not going to want to be involved in re-enactments because it is likely to be far too painful for them. But their children might, and it might bring much-needed money to the region.

    But above all I am a great believer in bringing about change through education and cultural exchange. And it is a terrible thing to admit to, but there is a cultural difference between the M25 belt (or Maggie Thatcher's Berlin Wall as I think Billy Bragg called it, although it might have been someone else) and the South Yorkshire mining towns.

    Like I said, probably a Saturday morning lunatic brain-wave that amounts to not very much. Or maybe a way of rekindling the real meaning of trades union solidarity alive in the minds of young people.

    Easy for a suthener like me to say, of course. And I know diddly squat about it in real terms.

    Spike - I never did make it to La Fete de l'Humanite in the 80s and 90s when I was there. Sounds like a good idea for a weekend away, work permitting.

  25. Looking at the 27b/6 site and it is hilarious.

    I love this one...

  26. @ BB.
    My (new) favourite is this one. Essential reading for those uncomfortable with religion getting jemmied into schools.

  27. That site is genius Alisdair, I had seen the permission slip one before but didn't realise that he has done so many others, it is on my favourite list now, thanks.

  28. afternoon all

    thanks alisdair I've been pissing myself with those...excellent.......

  29. "Purportedly Magic Jew" lol

  30. Hank

    I misread your post last night.Have re-read it and it makes sense.Apologies for snapping.

  31. @Phil

    Yes, l'Huma was founded by Jean Jaurès.

    Jean Léon Jaurès (full name Auguste Marie Joseph Jean Léon Jaurès; 3 September 1859 – 31 July 1914) was a French Socialist leader. Initially an Opportunist Republican, he evolved into one of the first social democrats, becoming the leader, in 1902, of the French Socialist Party, which opposed Jules Guesde's revolutionary Socialist Party of France. Both parties merged in 1905 in the French Section of the Workers' International (SFIO). An antimilitarist, Jaurès was assassinated at the outbreak of World War I, and remains one of the main historical figures of the French Left.

    Jaurès founded L'Humanité newspaper in 1904.

    L'Humanité ("Humanity"), formerly the daily newspaper linked to the French Communist Party (PCF), was founded in 1904 by Jean Jaurès, a leader of the French Section of the Workers' International (SFIO). The paper is now independent, although it maintains broad links with the PCF. It is the last French national daily newspaper of the left, Libération now being of a centrist social-liberal view.

    So if you're left-wing, it's a good choice, and it's actually IMO a good newspaper. It taught me a lot of my French in the old days. I used to particularly enjoy wrestling with the short opinion pieces entitled "Mais..." by André Wurmser, which were written in the most beautiful, but extraordinarily challenging French.

    @bb and phil

    OK, let's see if we can arrange a group visit. Here's the French Wiki presentation of the Fête.

    And here's the programme of concerts. I fancy seeing The Prodigy and Madness, myself.

    The ticket for the whole weekend is €21. Kids under 15 get in free.

    Oh, and this year, it's the Fête's 80th anniversary.

  32. The Prodg!! I'm up for it, then.

    Hmmm... given that we are no longer constrained to school terms, maybe we could take our summer holiday later this year and stop off on the way back. Sounds brilliant! I will have to check the the other half and the teenager and see what they think.

  33. Poutine!

    Jacques Dutronc le Dimanche!

    "...et moi, et moi, et moi!"


    I was watching a documentary about him, I think it might have been on FR5, while I was over at the beginning of June. He is doing alright for an old geezer, all things considered.

  34. I understand the need for conformity. Without a concise set of rules to follow we would probably all have to resort to common sense. Discipline is the key to conformity and it is important that we learn not to question authority at an early age.

    Rules instead of common sense very prevalent indeed, all around, but how to get back ? Many of those at the top most places got there being rule-followers...like in the fuzz speedkermit ?

    Turminderxuss lentil curry and chapatis is next month ( practicing for the Age of Transformation) , thinking of you .

    Will try instructions on linkies but summat up with my ActiveX

  35. Hmm, this Dhal is delicious...

  36. (That was a quote first para.)

    BB je suis désolated that you hate me, it was love at first write when we met on the Damian Green MP scenes.

    Worked in the shade this morning but later will be riding a mower in full sun...

  37. @bb

    Should that be "Putain!"?

    Poutine's the French spelling of the Russian PM and I don't think he's performing at the Fête. :-)

    I see the Simple Minds are on. I didn't realise they were still going.

  38. Hi TX ! In shade for an hour more at least, coffee perking and a roll-up of Golden Virginia . Bliss.

  39. Spike/BB

    When i first saw 'Poutine'i wondered whether it was a variation of the spelling of a certain Irish alcoholic beverage.

  40. Down Philippa's way it would of course be


  41. I'm at wk till 5pm. Then have to cycle 12miles home. Hope it don't rain... Still I just got tea and free scone... Swings & roundabouts...

  42. Yes, he is OK, Dutronc. Been married to singer Françoise Hardy for 30 years and he still smokes his huge cigars.
    One of my favourites of his is Paris s'éveille.

  43. @Paul

    Ah, poteen. I try and avoid that kind of stuff these days. :-(


    How about you? Do you fancy the Fête de l'Huma in September?

  44. To think, saturday was still a half-day for many of us when I started.
    I'm starting gardening part-time again next month after lotsa convalescences, what are you doing , if not indiscreet?

    My quote was from 'Too Cool for School' at Dukes site.

  45. Spike
    Never been, but I rather doubt if fit enough this year. Stroke-recovery can take years, IS taking now 15 months and not finished, well will never get back to what I was ! But very happy, grateful an all that.
    'Working' is me deciding what to do when, not regular employment for a Boss.

    Anyway I'm not much of a 'crowd person' ...tho my part-time partner does drag me along to things...

  46. @frog2

    Ah well. Some other time, then.

  47. I'm Front of House Supervisor, at a visitors centre in the Scottish Borders, Harestanes. Which means I run the gift shop... P/T temp til end of Oct. But not a bad place to work...

  48. I was actually being polite!

    In the Vendee, people say it instead of saying "putain" so as not to offend! :o)

    Poutine is also a thick gravy that you don't find much in France these days, but you get it with your chips in Montreal. (Although poutine might be the name of the whole dish, including the cheese bits.)


    Putaing, cong! :o)

  49. Right

    I have done bugger all so far today, so I really need to get my arse into gear.

    Back later, guys and gals. x

  50. @bb

    The one you hear a lot (from people politer than me) is Punaise! (bug).

  51. And some haute bourgeoises say "mince" instead of "merde".
    Or at least what I made of it .

  52. I'm going to imperil my bank balance, as is my wont on a Saturday,backing three from the card: Jonny Mudball in the 2.30 (Seb Sanders in fine form) and Camerooney in the 3.40 (on something of a streak at the mo) and in the plate itself, another Seb ride, which performed well in the Chester Cup,Mamlook (3.05).
    Nowt in the Plate, but Jonny Mudball and Camerooney both won. :)

  53. Spike
    "The one you hear a lot (from people politer than me) is Punaise! (bug)"

    Ah, I was wondering what that meant...

    €21 for three days sounds do-able. but - simple minds? heavens...

  54. I'm really on form today. Started the washing machine, then realised the ball with the detergent in was still sitting on top. It being an electronic appliance, I now have to wait for the cycle to finish before starting it all over again. Doh!

  55. @Phil

    You're not forced to watch anything! It's a big festival.

  56. Check your washing Spike, a top tip is that 1 in 10 washes can go without detergent as there is sufficient residue in the machine...

  57. well done alisdair!  have just put the £2 left in my bet365 account on england to win tomorrow.  might as well milk the tension for all it's worth...

  58. Alasdair

    Mine's a vodka, lime and soda, ta!

  59. @Turm

    Cheers. Perhaps in winter... but there are some sweaty sports shirts in there! I don't want to become a pariah. :-)

  60. Turm Thanks for the instructions on links
    Mower on trailer --awaaay.

  61. philippa

    Don,t want to labor the point but i think your £2 will be better spent on betting how many players will still be on the pitch at full-time in the Argentina v Mexico match.

  62. @Paul

    Yep. Ref's going to need an outsize red card to mark all the names on the back.

  63. paul - i know, but how low do you go with that? best for a spreadbet, that, would have thought.

    with a bonus payback if they actually end up playing five-a-side...

  64. @ Philippa, over 6 cards is just under evens with Bet365. 9/4 for a red card to be shown in 90 minutes, which is what I'd go for: the spreads are unappealingly high at 64-68 (10 pts for a yellow,25 for a red).

  65. Afternoon all.

    I know next to nothing about betting and whatnot, but I'm a bit gutted, because as it stands, all of my predictions about the WC have happened/panned out.

    Would that have been good for one of those accumulator whatsits, and would I have won anything substantial?

  66. philippa et al

    The other shock of the day is that Uruguay are still at full strengh-although i may have spoken too soon!

  67. paul - reckon they're keeping their powder dry to kneecap the USA in the quarters...

  68. I have certain strong opinions on harm prevention/reduction in sex work. I now realise there's no point in attempting a reasoned discussion on this subject with you, Montana and Andysays, since in return, I've been accused of "soothing my conscience" (not sure why I'd need to, I've never used the professional services of a sex worker), been told to fuck off, been told I apparently use women "to wank into", and you personally equated my saying informed adults had the right to decide if they wanted to sell sex with condoning the sexual abuse of children.

    I really have no desire to re-open the whole debate -- but the fact that you see things this way is so utterly patronising as to defy belief. You accused Leni, LaRit and I (and, by implication, any other woman who would agree with us) of having "religious" (unhealthy) attitudes towards sex -- no less and ad hominem than anything any of us said to you.

    The ideas that you tossed out yesterday about harm reduction are largely impracticable and would do fuck all to make things better for prostitutes. As long as demand for prostitutes outstrips the supply of women who do it as a wholly free choice, there will be women who are forced into prostitution against their will.

    Since there precious few men who are willing and can afford to pay anything like £200 for a fuck and there are exactly zero women who are going to be willing to do it for the paltry sums that most men think they should have to pay, there will always be more demand for prostitutes than there is a supply of women willing to do it. Therefore, there will always be women forced into it and exploited by others. The only way to protect women is to reduce demand for prostitutes to pretty much nil. Good luck with that.

    I stand by what I said to you last night -- if you've lied to women to get a fuck out of them, you were treating them as nothing more than an object to wank into. If that notion bothers you, the problem is you -- not what I've said to you.

  69. @Montana

    if you've lied to women to get a fuck out of them

    Fuck knows how you managed to conclude that one, Montana. Anyway, the answer's no, I never have.

    I'm sorry if men have proved a disappointment to you, but stop taking it out on me.

    Anyone who cares can look back over last night's whole thread and draw their own conclusions. So let's just drop it.

  70. Having looked through yesterdays thread i want to clarify something i said in what was a badly worded post on my part.

    I made a comment about in-bred aristos and in-bred chavs not only having a lot in common but also having attitudes which were holding this country back.

    My reference to chavs was not the sort of snipe that certain middle-class types make about all working class people.It was a reference to a certain type of working class person who has made good,turned their backs on their working class roots and embraced laissez-faire right wing attitudes.It was also not a snipe against all working class people who want to better themselves or who have bettered themselves.

    The sort of chav or aspiring chav i was referring is a certain type of nouveau riche or BCBG as the French would say.The type of former working class person who still believes Thatcher was good for this country.

    Anyway i hope that clarifies what i was trying to say.

  71. Big Brother is pretty riveting this year.

  72. Stoaty!

    Long time no see.

    What have you been up to?

  73. Stoatily No Big Bro 4 me. Good to see you Col! Biked back, 52 mins personal best. Cpl in the Plough 4 me. Catch u all after Dr Who, if it goes up on the iPlayer, and if the world cup and Season Finale don't crash the interwebz ;)

  74. Paul I think you're looking for something other than BCBG . That's your classic and elegant look -- " Bon chic bon genre" -- imagine a very cool and collected debutante in everyday twinset and pearls, who may also fuck like a rattlesnake of course ...

    Neologisms which have surprised me after 33years' away are partner, gob-smacked and chav. I don't know yet what a chav IS !

  75. frog2

    I thought BCBG was the term given for the 'all fur coat and no knickers' attitude/look/lifestyle.I thought the Bon Chance Bon Genre was delivered ironically.

    Got that wrong then!

    My definition of a true chav is someone who may wear designer labels and be wealthy and successful but has absolutely no style,intellect,social conscience ect.

    Victoria Beckham is probably an example of my definition of a female chav.

    Someone like Kelvin MacKenzie is probably a good example of a male chav

    Many people however use the generic term chav to basically describe a working class person who is not wealthy ,lacking in intellect and has an 'attitude'

  76. @Paul: I don't know where you come from but on Tyneside the term is "charver" and they are definately not wealthy "nouveau riche" types.
    Besides I thought the term for "new money" was "par-venu".
    Anyway "charvers" wear fake Burberry and huge circular earings (the females that is).
    Think, Vicky Pollard with a geordie accent!

  77. Fuck knows how you managed to conclude that one, Montana. Anyway, the answer's no, I never have.

    Well, let's see:

    Like almost all men, I've invited women I've been attracted to out to dinner and/or bought them drinks. Also taken them to the cinema or to a concert.

    You all know perfectly well that was what I meant. Or do you all have lots of friends who say, "I'll shag you if you pay for the pizza"?


    But if you want confirmation, it's not what I said, but I can now tell you that I've bought a woman a drink in my time simply because I've wanted to have sex with her. That's fairly universal, isn't it?

    indicate to me that you think it's fairly normal to be somewhat duplicitous in order to get laid. Or did you say to those women, "If I buy you a drink, will you fuck me?" Certainly nothing that you said yesterday indicated that you are always open about wanting nothing but sex from a particular woman. Saying so now is really not going to change that impression.

    I'm sorry if men have proved a disappointment to you, but stop taking it out on me.

    And, once again -- I don't agree with you so I must be emotionally damaged. How utterly charming of you. You were screaming for an apology from LaRit yesterday for "playing the class card" with you. I've asked this before, but please explain to me how it is any less ad hominem for you to impugn the mental health of LaRit, Leni, me or, by implication, anyone else who disagrees with you about this? If LaRit owes you an apology for calling you "middle class", then surely we deserve an apology from you for saying that we're irrational and emotionally damaged.

    So let's just drop it.

    I'll be happy to in just a moment. I do have one more thing I'd like to say, but it's going to have to be put in a separate comment box.

  78. The whole chav thing pisses me right off (mainly because a lot of people might consider me one ;) ).

    The papers, and some people in real life no doubt, seem to use it as shorthand for sub-human.

  79. Alright, this is the last I’m going to say on this subject. I hope that this analogy is simple enough for anyone out there who may fail to see the difference between a woman fucking a man she barely knows simply because she wants a shag and a prostitute, however highly paid, and a john:

    I used to help out a woman I know from time to time -- she was undergoing treatment for breast cancer in a city that’s more than 100 miles away. I would drive her to her treatments and occasionally I would help her around her house. At first, I was doing this as one friend to another, but after the first few times, she started insisting on giving me money. I tried to decline, mostly because I could see what was going to happen. As long as I was doing this as one friend helping another, I was always free to decline if I had other plans and I was free to decide what tasks I was and wasn’t willing to do for her.

    As soon as she began to give me money, even though that money was ostensibly just her way of thanking me for my help, the dynamics of the situation changed. If she called wanting me to do something for her and I told her that I couldn’t, you could hear the irritation in her voice. When I took her to her treatments, I no longer drove her to the hospital and back, I was expected to drive her around the city afterwards to various places. Now, the money that she gave me was in no way adequate compensation for my time and effort (frequently lugging heavy bags of books to and from her appointments because she would work on a book she was writing while she was receiving her treatment) as a job, but because she was giving me money, she very definitely came to feel that I was beholden to her for the “extra income” she was providing little single mum me.

    That same shift in dynamics occurs when a woman takes money for sexual favours. If a woman goes home with or takes home from a bar a man she barely knows and sleeps with him simply because she wants a shag, she is exercising free agency. She owes him nothing and is fully free to do whatever she does or does not want. The moment she accepts payment for sexual favours, the dynamic shifts -- no matter how much she may tell herself and others differently. This is true whether the payment is £20 or £200. The more highly-paid prostitute may tell herself that she is in complete control, but she’s lying to herself. Even if only on a subconscious level, she is aware that she depends on that income.

    That subconscious pressure may actually be higher for the highly paid call-girl than it is for the street-walker. She knows that there is a fairly small pool of men willing to pay that much money for sex. She knows that the men who do pay that much want young, pretty women and that, as her looks fade, her client base will shrink until one day, no one wants to pay her that much. If she’s going to hold on to her nice flat and put away enough to maintain the luxurious lifestyle once the johns have gone, she needs to make as much as she can while she’s young and pretty. That pressure is going to cause her to agree to things she probably wouldn’t otherwise, regardless of whether she admits it to herself or anyone else. That, my friends, is hardly acting from free agency and therein is the lie of the happy hooker.

  80. @chekhov

    I,m in danger of tying meself up in knots on this one.Making a dogs breakfast of trying to explain meself.

    Will gracefully retire with me tail between me legs,continue watching what i hope will be a Ghana victory over the USA and try and work out in me head what the fucck i,m trying to say.

    And if anyone should be interested i,ll try and explain meself later.However hopefully most people have got a life and by the end of the match would have forgotten all about it-even if they were ever that interested in the first place which i suspect they weren,t.:-)

    Hope all,s good in geordieland!

  81. Jen

    You,re no chav by any definition :-)

  82. @jennifera30: maybe it's just a regional thing but the "charvers" in the North East are generally regarded with some affection rather than contempt.
    Not least because they usually display a sense of humour and a self deprecating awareness about the absurdity of the way they have been classified.
    That's my take on it anyway.
    If you want something more substantive, that Laurie bloke who presents "Thinking Allowed" on Radio 4 is your man to ask.

  83. I am in the North East Chekhov, Middlesbrough to be precise, I've never heard charver but I know there is a massive difference in slang from Tyneside to Teesside.

    Chav is a pretty new thing around here and I can't actually remember what people used the call the people they now call chavs.

  84. Thanks Paul. ;)

  85. Paul

    Diane Abbott interview - bit about W Indian mums starts at 1.52

    Wriggle -wiggle - roll eyes.


  86. Paul That was my take, will shortly be corrected if wrong . Wiki says

    Chav-- is said to be an aggressive teenager,sometimes unemployed or of white working class background, but not limited to only this,[2] who repeatedly engages in anti-social behaviour,[2] such as street drinking, drug abuse and rowdiness, or other forms of juvenile delinquency.

    So your first category are more 'nouveau riche' perhaps. Call them rich chavs , because they have potsa money but that is the only thing that separates them from yobs.

    On 'inbred aristos' and 'inbred chavs' having a lot in common, you have a point. I will re-phrase that -- " People who stay locked-in to a negative early cultural conditioning and never evolve are often very limited ."

    Luckily there are many in the middle who do learn and evolve.

    PS Knots are made for un
    tying too ! Hope it's a good match.

  87. Chav - said to be anglo-romani.

    Chav = child, Chavo = boy. Chavi = girl

    used to have very elderly relative from Aspatria who called me chavi .

  88. I think possibly the definition of what I think of when I hear chav is Jade Goodies mother, I saw her interviewed once and she even called her daughter my chavvie (although that might be local slang).

  89. Well there you go Leni it is obviously some kind of pet name for children.

  90. My dogs hav often been called Raq - Romani for beloved dog. I have had Red Raq. Black Raq and several spotty Raqs as well as a bridle one. Family tradition.

    Dogges have also been of various colour - current Dogge - full name Horrible Dogge. The horrible honours a little autistic boy I loved lots who used 'horrible' to mean wonderful or I like it. Miloo was Iranian and his first word was 'orribool'

  91. I found the match on my computer ! Looks pretty even the teams; neutral pro commenting on Fr2, i thought there was a foul by them before the last Ghana corner.

  92. This comment has been removed by the author.

  93. Spike & PhilippaB

    "The one you hear a lot (from people politer than me) is Punaise! (bug)"

    Ah, I was wondering what that meant...

    In Dutch that means push-pin as in those used for sticking papers onto a soft notice board. There may be a similar meaning in French.

    (sorry gremlins have invaded my keyboard)

  94. Yep, a "punaise" is a drawing pin in French as well.

    I love Dogge, Leni.

    When my lad was two, for some reason he thought that "doggy" was an adjective meaning that something was unpleasant or bad. I have no idea why. It was very funny at the time. "No, not eating that. It's a doggy sandwich" etc.

    He is a mild Aspie, though, so who knows...

  95. @jennifera30: I'm not from the north east but I have lived in Newcastle upon Tyne for nearly fifteen years, so my observations are bit skewed since I come from Sheffield.
    Anyway, interesting stuff about "chavs". I'm thinking I might check out the "Thinking Allowed" website and ask Laurie if he'd like to investigate further.
    Also might be a good idea for a thread on Cif but someone else would have to suggest it since I have vowed never to comment over there ever again until I'm taken off "pre-mod".(months now)
    I won't bore you all by elabotrating about that but for anyone who is interested, Atomboy has it all recorded on "Cif Moderation Watch"

  96. Leni

    Chav - said to be anglo-romani.

    Chav = child, Chavo = boy. Chavi = girl

    In Hungarian slang -- said to come from one of the four Roma langauages:

    csávó (pronounced chavo) = guy
    csaj (pronounced chai) = girl

  97. BB

    Thanks for reminding me about drawing pin (had clean slipped my mind). This is how UT can help one keep one's English up. A push pin has a protuberance on it.

  98. @Leni: thanks for the link to "New Grub Street"
    Not come across that before.

  99. @Turminder: thanks for the advice about how do links. I've got a bottle of "shampoo" on ice ready for when I've deciphered it and accomplished my mission!
    BTW: I passed my "ECDL" exam yesterday.
    I've no idea what level of competence my qualification bestows me with but it was worth doing and I learn't a lot of stuff I didn't know before.

  100. medve

    It's amazing how quickly vocabulary can disappear into the filing cabinet at the back of your brain if you don't use it frequently. Soon comes back though!

  101. Damn: should "learn't" have an apostrophe or is it "learnt"?
    I'm a bit pedantic about grammar and spelling and syntax and all that jazz.
    Not other people's but my own.
    When all the nuance and body language is of no use to us when we are "blogging" I think clarity should take precedence when posting on sites such as this one.
    I'm not suggesting I achieve my own ideal all the time but it's a "benchmark" at least!

  102. Go on Ghana, that was a beauty. :)

  103. @BB:I think the acronym "ECDL" stands for "European Computer Driving Licence"
    I had to log on to "central.thirdforce."
    Not sure what that is all about tbh but it was run by Newcastle College which has a unit on the campus of Northumbria University in Sandyford.
    It also happens to be next to the Lipman Building where I studied drama and creative writing.
    If you want to have a go at un-packing that lot, feel free!

  104. ckhov

    don't want to go back to last nights thread but George Gissing (author NGS) was interesting guy. Came from not too well off Manchester family - won exhibition to Oxford. Always on the outside there. Married a prostitute - to 'save' her - ended in misery.

    Gissing explored this in one of his novels - main character did same and the had to contend with her gin habit.
    NGS is about prostitution of talent - Edwin ('hero') wants to be great writer, refuses to compronmise despite offers to wrie for newspaper. Family teeters on edge of poverty - about his battle with himself. Also interesting critique of Vctorian newspapers.

    Gissing is well worth a read. All his stuff avaiable on line. Lot about early socialism, early feminism as well as Oxford movement and clerical hypocrisy.

  105. Chekhov

    Sorry - keyboard seems to have fallen out with part of alphabet.

  106. Go Checkov! I always think of you as the trusty helmsman of the Enterprise, although I know your homage is directed elsewhere. Top Tip, learn keyboard short cuts, they are often listed in the drop-down menus. CTRL: s,z,x,c,v,b,u,i etc.

    My adjusted cycle time is 1.22, no personal best, I just failed basic arithmetic!

  107. medve

    Thanks for that - Romani borrowings - both ways - are interesting.

    A much maligned and persecuted people.

  108. Chavs, Chavies, Charvers, Chevrons. Can be scary bastards. £2000 of designer gear draped on human pit bull? Not my idea of Vicky Pollard...

  109. @Turminder: yeah I learned a lot about the "shortcuts"; very useful and a lot about "computer housekeeping" which helps my "steam driven" computer up to speed!
    I'm a bit worried about the built in obsolencence of the kit I'm using!

  110. well that's sorted.....well done ghana!

  111. Shirt-tugger no7 Ghanaian should have had a red card.?
    Bloody good game ; The yanquis seemed to me to be working harder , more aggressive in the right way .
    As that other Duke said -- " a close-run thing !

  112. Woohoo! Well done, Ghana. Now I can enjoy the rest of the WC without the jingoist horseshit.

  113. @leni: interesting stuff about George Gissing.
    Will check it out later.
    I'll just throw another name into the mix;
    Have you read "Kiddars Luck" by Jack Common?
    A brilliant journalist from the North East who chronicled his experience of growing up within spitting distance of where I'm typing these words and in a good "Orwellian" style prose.

  114. Somebody is a Bad American !

  115. chekhov

    Have heard of 'Kiddar's Luck' but not read it . Will look for it. I know very little about NE England - apart from obvious stuff that everyone knows.

  116. Montana

    suggestion is it possible to have a page for book recommendations? or would it be too much hassel?
    I take mental note then forget the book and forget where and who's mentioned it....I'd be willing to update it.... :)

  117. Somebody is a Bad American !

    I know. It's a wonder they don't kick me out.


    No problem at all. I'll get it set up in just a few minutes.

  118. @chekhov

    Jack Common was a friend of Orwell's; George was a fan of his essays. I remember reading lots of correspondence between the two in Orwell's collected journalism and letters.

  119. Montana

    great you star! Next week when I have some time I'll look back and do some listing..

  120. Montana

    Careful now. Black helicopters will be flying over your house in no time if you keep posting un-American stuff like that! :o)

  121. gandolfo being 63 and for various reasons a bit of a book-collector,maybe the book recommendations should have a lot of sub-threads, because I for one have many hundreds of all descriptions ?

    For example Literature could have a subsection of historical novels . A far better way of learning history than the classroom, and so on .

  122. BB I had exactly the same thought of black helis.

  123. frog2 hi

    yep sub-sections/threads was what I was thinking....but how to organise it simply...?!?

  124. @PeterJ:yes I recall Jack Common corresponding with George Orwell....must look that up again.
    I have a couple of Orwell's essays saved in as word in "my documents". If any one is interested I'll try and work out how to post them on here,

  125. Gndolfo + Frog + Montana

    Yes to the booklist. Frog's enthusiam suggests we might need the Dewey decimal to orgainise it.

    If Montana keeps up the un American stuff she may soon be able to claim asylum here.

  126. Until my last computer was struck by lightning my list of Favourites was a yard long . Slightly more organised now.

    As usual the detail needs work.

  127. @chekhov

    Ah! As so often the Internet has been there before us. Orwell's complete works (apart from the letters) are online here...

  128. frog

    '...struck by lightning' - figure of speech or --?

  129. but the yanks have easy ..extradition ..

  130. I'm very literal -- donner und blitzen !

  131. leni

    who's the dewey decimal??

    is there anything we can do to help you get chucked out??!!

    I have time to sort things but maybe need direction as my sense of organised has gone to pot since living in Italy ;)

  132. This comment has been removed by the author.

  133. Leni -- that was no enthusiasm, just the usual thinking two steps ahead, or were you taking the Mick?

  134. Leni

    "If Montana keeps up the un American stuff she may soon be able to claim asylum here. "

    Hah! Good thinking, Leni. If neo-nazi numpties can try and claim asylum in the States, I see no reason why a socialist can't try and claim asylum here! :o)

  135. @Turminder: "I know your homage is directed elswhere."
    I don't mind a dig or stroke of irony if I understand it but I don't get your point.
    Anyway thanks for the computer advice...most useful.

  136. gandolfo

    System which organises books i library. Once - for my sins - I was ordered onto Children's librarian course. Dewey is simple but not too good for young kids. I devised colour coded system which worked well.


    Glad you weren't attached at the time. x

  137. Frog

    No mick taking - just admiring you foreward planning.

  138. @chekhov

    Turminder was referring to your nickname, which he takes to be a reference to Anton Pavlovich rather than the helmsman of the USS Enterprise.

  139. @Turminder - sorry to speak for you there, wasn't sure when you'd be back...

  140. Turminder

    Keep meaning to ask - in whch Banks novel do you feature ?

  141. Leni -- i seem to have a totally undeserved charmed life . Maybe there is a God who looks after the drunk and mad and unconventional and original and Outsiderish etc after all...

    well I can't guarantee all of that for me, but some ...for sure ... drunk, sometimes !

  142. All.

    Apols for my descent into griping pissed shite last night - am rummaging around in a very miserable basket at the moment. Angry, unsettled, lashing out and having to deal with an arsehole neighbour trying to get us evicted.

    Just come in from watching the Ghana/USA game and am much cheered up, been rooting for Ghana all along and Brixton is an explosion of happiness - holding up the traffic, horns beeping, people making their cars 'dance'(?) HipLife on the stereos, holding up the buses, getting on the buses waving Ghanaian flags at the drivers! Some folk are going to have some sore heads tomorrow.

    Spike/Montana - if you're around tomorrow, I'll post some considered thoughts tomorrow eve.

    TTFN Campers....

  143. leni

    blimey that sounds ambitious!!! I thought off the top of me 'ead:
    Literature: Classic
    Politics: Contemporary


  144. LaRit

    Hope you get yourself sorted, hon. xx

  145. @PeterJ: I know I'm a bit of a pedantic twat and I'm usually dispossed to people who speak up on by behalf but I need an explanation of what "If your homage is directed elsewhere" means.
    To whom am I paying homage?

  146. chekhov

    I think he meant that he assumed you had picked your screen name in homage to Chekov the writer but it always made him think of the bloke from Star Trek, I don't think it was meant to be an insult in any way.

  147. Props LRit. Warp 9 please Lt. Checkov. I have the com thanx PeterJ ; ) Matter my dear Leni, where my true form is revealed! NN all.

    My dad walked two lengths of his hospital ward, so he seems to be on the mend. : D

  148. Classes
    1.1 000 – Computer science, information & general works
    1.2 100 – Philosophy and psychology
    1.3 200 – Religion
    1.4 300 – Social sciences
    1.5 400 – Language
    1.6 500 – Science
    1.7 600 – Technology
    1.8 700 – Arts and recreation
    1.9 800 – Literature
    1.10 900 – History, geography, and biography
    Gandolfo - Dewey system. Each subdivided into 10 the each subdivision also by tens ->

    There is a childrens system too.

    You're right - we need simple divisions for directing people and easy update - like adding next one onto end of list. Depends upon how erudite we are and how broad our reading.

    you've missed out Alchemy and general mysticism - all popular on UT I think.

  149. oops, sorry that last comment was a reply to Turminder.
    Apologies PeterJ

  150. Ah you are back Turm, explain yourself right now. ;)

  151. LaRit

    sorry to hear of your problems - will mail you
    love x

  152. jenni

    You sound like my rather frightening mother - I never could explain, not in terms she understood at least.

  153. @ jennifera30: I didn't take it as an insult. I just didn't understand the comment.

  154. Montana: thanks :)

    Leni the page is up!!

  155. Montana
    For example one of my favourite historical novelists is the american Kenneth Roberts.

    Being a pragmatical type I read for what I can learn to help me lead my life, and that one is full of wisdom.

    His writing ( pre-1940 ) is full of the ever-repeated stupidity and corruption of those in 'government' contrasted with the common sense and basic honesty ( in all senses of the word )of normal people.

    Very applicable today.

  156. LaRit

    must be difficult..+ve vibes coming your way!!

  157. Checkov told us it's the playwright he's named for, Jen got the nail on the head! Bon soir, mes amis.. x

  158. gandolfo

    i have looked - I/m impressed with Montana - I await your whizzkiddery with categories, lists and reshuffling.

  159. turminderxuss

    Cross fingers too.

  160. leni

    blimey.......you could be waiting a while!!!! ;) seriously I'll look at the possiblities.....

  161. @frog

    Just looked up Kenneth Roberts, as I hadn't heard of him - and then dredged up a vague memory of Northwest Passage on the TV when I was very young indeed. Looks worth investigating.

    Would be good if we had somewhere to put recommendations like that. :-)

  162. @LaRit

    Don't worry about us. Take care.

  163. As Gandolof has already noticed -- the new page is up. I'm going to go back and do a bit of tweaking. I think I might be able to do the sub-sections thing. Discovered "pages" that I never knew existed.

  164. Turminder

    Good news about your dad - I wish him well.

  165. Turminder:

    Get yer Da' a large glass of the strong stuff and give him a big hug!


    Big hugs xxx

  166. ok I think I understand now and I am a big fan of Chekhov which is why I chose his name as my alias.
    Not sure what to add really other than read some Chekhov ....not just the plays... his short stories are sublime.

  167. LaRit:

    Hope things settle down for you soon. I'm afraid, in the rush to get the reading blog set up, I only just saw your post above.

  168. Oooooooohhhhh books!!!


  169. Jmes

    Please note - all suggestions for reading list must be for all things thuggish and thick - we want none of your sensitive intellectual types here.

  170. Can I ask for a section in the book bit that deals with fun, trivial or even (god forbid) genre stuff, there is only so much intellectual stuff I can try, and fail, to read. ;)

  171. I will repeat this announcement at the top of tomorrow's thread, but:

    The Untrusted reads is now set up. As I was doing the initial set-up, I discovered that you can have up to 10 pages on a blog. (If I'd known that ages ago, the UT2 would've just been a page on here... oh well.) I have set up 7 pages so far, in the following categories:


    We can have 3 more categories, but I thought I'd start with these. If we find that we need to tweak later, I'm sure we can sort something out.

    Within each page, I think it might make the most sense to do perhaps a weekly or monthly list of recommendations? We can't do a page-within-a-page to do sub-genres, so the division is probably going to be time-based in some way.

    I believe that I've e-mailed author invitations to everyone for whom I have e-mail addresses. If you didn't get one, either I don't have an e-mail address for you, the one I have is old/unused, or I accidentally left you out. If that's the case, please e-mail me at:

    thewildhack AT gmail DOT com

    and I'll send you one.

    You only need to be added as an author if you want the ability to start new threads. Anyone who can comment here should be able to comment there with no problems.

    Hope you enjoy it -- please e-mail me or comment on the Home page over there with any suggestions you might have for changes.

  172. This comment has been removed by the author.

  173. @ PeterJ 00.01h

    Just found that 1939 edition of 'Rabble in Arms' about the American Revolution, normally my dad wrote his name and the date in the flyleaf, because he read a lot in the early 1940's in some cruiser or battleship, but not this one.

    My favourite is " Lydia Bailey " -- long out of print, but worth finding second-hand, like mine was in Paris c 1990 .

    Happy hunting. Worth it .

  174. Oh, Jen, bless your heart! I nearly added a "Humour" page, but thought maybe that would be too low-brow for everyone else. I'll go do it now.

  175. Some history required please.

    speaking to old guy taoday who said sasparilla was good for aches and pains. i know the smilax root was used in the making of root beer - said to have medicinal qualities. At one time it was believed to cure syphilis.

    Now this old gent told me back in the fifties he worked in Yorks mine - said they had Sas shops where people - mainly men - gathered to drink Sas.

    Anyone know more about this ? Is root beer the same as small beer ?

  176. Leni

    You calling me a nancy boy??



    Thanks this is wicked!!

    But...(*looking sheepish....)

    I think I might have messed it up already.

    I got a bit excited, and gone done a few recommendations in a couple of the subsections by clicking on 'post a comment'.

    Is that wrong??

    Do I have to go home now??

  177. Jenni

    Humour is a good idea - we're going to need it.

  178. Leni,

    I don't know. I'll google it in a sec for you though.

    But, root beer and saspirilla both have that TCP/antisepticish taste (I love Root Beer) so it would make sense if they were 'medicinal'!!

  179. @Leni

    There used to be temperance bars all over the north; something to do with the Methodist tradition. There was one next door to Mr Spears, the barber my dad took me to when I was little, and we used to go in there for a sarsparilla, dandelion and burdock, or draught Vimto.

    At the time, a soft-drink truck from William Deacon and Sons came round to the house once a week with stone jars of dandelion and burdock and small glass carboys of lemon barley water or cherryade. You brought the empties out when you saw the truck, and swapped them for full ones.

    Root beer, I dunno. I'd never heard of it until I went to visit my grandad in California and started watching US TV.

  180. I just found this Leni.

    Not sure how reliable it is though!?

  181. Searching around, it looks like sarsparilla uses smilax and root beer uses sassafras. Now to find out what those are.

  182. James

    oogle -google - nancy boy.

    I was looking for erudition here. But thanks - i'll lie back in comfort while you do the googly thing.

  183. Ahhh, right.

    You wanted to know whether the sas shop thing was true, not the medicinal thing.

    Ignore that last post then.

  184. Leni

    Gawd blimey yer click yer fingers and yer got 'em googling like crazy.

    What,s it like to have such power?:-)

  185. LaRit

    Have just seen your earlier post.Hope everything sorts itself out for you.Take care.

  186. James

    had a look - looks potentially problematic. It seems that sasparilla is no longer made. I've never tried root beer. My mum had a go at making ginger beer but it blew up one night terrifying the whole family and the dog.


    The temperance thing seems very likely, an alternative to the demon drink. There was similar very strong temperance movement here in S Wales. A blacksmith from W Wales had a vision - walked across the south procliming his message. He was accompanied by a family known as the Taibach wailers. Some congenital disorder gave them odd gait and voices. Very much valued at funerals apparently.

    social movements are quite fascinating. Need to find a good general book on it.

  187. The saintly blacksmith was circa 1910 - how strong was the temperance movement in the 50s?

  188. Leni

    I bought some when I was back in the UK at Christmas.

    It could have been that either it was some black market shit, or it wasn't proper saspirilla (it was cordial..) but I got it from a 'Lewis and Coopers' type shop somewhere I think.

  189. Maybe I should have checked the sell-by-date though, because I just saw this:

    "(In the UK, Fitzpatrick's, the last temperance bar, stopped selling its sarsaparilla cordial in 2003)".

    If that's true, I was drinking seven year old sarsaparilla!!


  190. leni 01./06
    Humour is a good idea - we're going to need it.

    And there we all have a choice .

    EITHER humour as making the 'best' of a disastrous situation , and in fact pretending it ain't so bad after all

    OR as a weapon to fight back with .

    We need both, certainly not just the first one .

    XX !

  191. Jmes

    Well - you suvived it - do you now have a strange gait and high pitched voice ?

    Perhaps sas is like whiskey - the longer it stands the better.

  192. @Leni

    It was beginning to dwindle round our way by the late 50s. My mother's family were Christadelphians (the provisional wing of the Methodists) and my dad's were nominally Methodists but drunks almost to a man and woman. The temperance bars and hotels had all closed by the end of the 60s; I think my local one near the barber's lasted a shorter time than that.

  193. Leni

    You may find this interesting.

    Nettle Beer is supposed to have properties that are good for alleviating rheumatic pain,gout and asthma.Apparently it,s popular up north and easy to make yourself.