Two pictures of discipline: Heads up, shoulders back, chests out, tongues in (that last order refers to the second picture).
On the right – RUC District Inspector Michael Murphy, escorting Princess Elizabeth in Belfast 1949.
(The story of Uncle Mike and the future Queen is here.)
And here’s another picture of discipline. Training will out.
Cat courage? Or dog self-discipline?
These Continue reading
Amy Winehouse – She’s saying: “Oh no, I couldn’t eat another thing. Well… Maybe one more chocolate eclair. Just to be polite.
Ever walked down the street and felt that you were being watched?
I’m not talking about that time you forgot your trousers or had your skirt tucked into your knickers. You were being watched that time. Gawped at in fact.
But I’m talking about something more surreptitious.
Something you sense but can’t quite be sure of.
As if people aren’t moving turning their heads – just twitching their eyes. Like a ghostly portrait in haunted mansion.
So back to the street and the feeling of being watched.
Do you try to carry on as if you hadn’t noticed. Whistling maybe. Swaying in an attempt to look casual. Fighting the urge to speed up.
Samuel Beckett: “You looking at me? Huh! Beware or I’ll zap you with my laser eyes.”
Whilst beneath cloth your buttocks are clenched. Your back is straighter. Your own eyes are swivelling while you force yourself not to look back over your shoulder.
Then imagine that the eyes following you are not just anybody’s eyes. That round each corner a new famous face confronts you.
Do you feel intimidated? Scrutinised? Weighed and measured?
Or Continue reading
She’s just realised she should have married Arthur instead of Philip.
The Diamond Jubilee could have been so different, if only HM Queen Elizabeth II had married miners’ leader Arthur Scargill instead of Philip.
That’s the view from Daley Bread – scene of my unfortunate mistake and then my embarrassing retraction. I’ve since realised it’s a fount of wisdom about the world.
And the view from behind the sandwich counter is this:
The Queen should have married Arthur Scargill. Then we’d have someone to fight for and someone to fight for us.
The working class have been squeezed out of the picture. It could have been so different.
Or would it have been? Arthur Scargill and Prince Philip are not as different as you might think.
- They’re both known for cutting themselves on their sharp tongues. Philip: To then dictator of Paraguay, General Stroessner: “It’s a pleasure to be in a country that isn’t ruled by its people.”Arthur: “Only a fool wants a confrontation and only a fool wants a strike.”
Prince Philip with coal smeared over his face to conceal his true identity.
They’ve both shovelled coal. Arthur down Woolley Colliery. Philip in the boiler room of the RMS Empress of Russia.
- Philip was mentioned in despatches for his role in the Battle of Cape Matapan. Arthur was renowned for his defiance at the Battles of Satley Gate and Orgreave.
- Arthur was branded “the enemy within”. Philip’s relations and sisters were barred from his wedding because of their German connections.
- Both have been smeared in connection with the British secret services – Continue reading
They just couldn’t wait.
They couldn’t wait to cut the heads of carefully crafted snowmen. What could be so urgent to necessitate the introduction of saw to sculpted neck?
Saving the grass apparently – according to Hounslow Council.
Even as war, hunger and pestilence roam the world, somehow a decapitated snowman deserves his place on the front page. And in some parts of London like Chiswick, there’s been a wholesale decaptitatory crackdown.
Even my Fosters-drinking mate at the railway station has disappeared – and he was fine this morning. Gone without trace.
And for what? It’s snowing again.
Sure, it may be laudable to clear pavements to save people from slips and broken hips. But who begrudges a snowman?
As we’re having to wait for the sun anyway, why not have the cheery companionship of a snowy sentinel to share the icy times while they last.
We’ll be wading through mud, slush and rain soon enough.
According to the Daily Telegraph, even the Queen has been drawn into the row Continue reading
"I just can't bear to look at that man."
The bar is hereby set to a new high for the The Day I Met… Competition. We’re talking mightily prestigious here. Almost John Peel level. Someone who has two birthdays each year. Holiday homes across the globe. Likes the gee-gees. She even knew Princess Diana. Yes… it’s the Queen. Queen Elizabeth II (or I if you’re Scottish). As monarchs go, she makes up in dignity what she lacks in liveliness.
This startling tale comes from Rudy Noriega of the Gullible’s Travels blog.
Regardless of your politics (and you know how I compromised mine here and here), Queen Elizabeth is the sort of person for whom you’d want to scrub up well before meeting. You’d want to make a fairly good impression, wouldn’t you? Not encounter with your flies down or spinach between your teeth. You certainly wouldn’t want to encounter her when you were… say…. oh I don’t know… PISSED! (That means drunk, by the way, not angry, for any Americans reading this.)
Oh Rudy, Rudy, Rudy… Continue reading
Is this the best job in the world?
No – I’m not talking about looking after that island off the Queensland coast. According to the bloke who won the competition to do it, it wasn’t as much fun as he’d expected. It tired him out. Too much blogging too.
And it’s not this massage man either. As he says himself, he doesn’t even get to belong to a trade union and he has to work all hours. (Question: Should I have embedded the video in this post? Or is it too saucy? Or just funny? Let me know. Really. I have to keep tabs on my Charlotte Rampling rating.)
He longs for his own little desk. And no wonder. He must have heard of this person. The person I met last week. The person who really does have the best job in the world.
He – or she – works in a British government department of diminishing importance with nobody you’ve ever heard of in charge. Best not say exactly which one. It’s somewhere round Continue reading
Gallant Sir Walter - famous for doing things he didn't - like laying his cloak over a puddle in front of Queen Elizabeth (and infamous for doing things he did - the odd forgotten massacre in Ireland - but that's off the subject).
Forget Walter Raleigh.
Forget that pathetic bit at the end of Four Weddings and a Funeral – “Is it raining? I hadn’t noticed.” Pass the sickbag, quick.
This is what I call romantic.
True, it could have gone terribly wrong Continue reading