Tag Archives: culture

Culture

The Loose Bloggers Consortium said: Write about culture. The Fountains Abbey pub opposite St Mary’s Hospital immediately came to mind. A plaque on the wall claims that the bacterium that led to Alexander Fleming’s discovery of penicillin could have wafted out the pub window along with beer fumes, across the road and into the window of his office – leading to the contamination of the culture in his petri dish. The rest is medical history. (And good news for some of my World War Two relatives.)

But I saw a different memorial more recently. While I was joining the great and arty to commemorate Ted Hughes the other day, a stone in memory of people who served in Malaya caught my eye.

The inscription read:

To commemorate the work of all those men and women of the British race who served Malaya 1786-1968

They shall come from the east and from the west and shall sit down in the kingdom of God

The pic I took was too rubbish to show you. There are better ones here, along with one of the Queen Mother unveiling it.

But the inscription raised questions for me. The British race? What is it? Continue reading

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Is God still an Englishman?

Chris Bryen & Phil Kane of Wolf's Head

Ye Gods! Who or what are they? They dress only in black. (Johnny Cash afficionados?) They have black faces. (But they’re nothing like the Black & White Minstrels.) They scurry around whacking people with clubs… I’ve given it away now, haven’t I?

You’re still wondering what these gothic and possibly pagan performers have to do with God being an Englishman. Fair enough. Let’s get the Men (and Women) In Black out of the way first.

Danny Graham & Emilia Graham - Wolf's Head & Vixen

Continue reading

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H-blocks in Edinburgh

I was doing some work in Edinburgh, at the Festival, and had the good fortune to see Martin Lynch’s play The Chronicles Of Long Kesh. Great production. I’d recommend it. The performance got a great reception, but even so, the cast surprised me by making it out and down before the audience, so as to be able to thank each person individually for coming to see their show. Bit overwhelming. And lovely too.

After which I checked out the play Go To Gaza And Drink The Sea. Some haunting music woven through it. Rather unremittingly sad. And odd to see someone I actually know being played as a character on the stage.

On a lighter note – Rhod Gilbert and the cat which looked like Nicholas Lyndhurst is the stand-up show for anyone who battles with technology and is suspicious of toasters, washing machines, vacuum cleaners and other humans in general. Very clever and very funny.

Here he is mithering on about something else in Australia.

And coincidentally it Australians who were singing news bulletins in the Dean Gallery. Their song about Jose Ramos Horta rejecting human rights criticisms in East Timor stuck in my mind.  Endearing.

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