Tag Archives: race

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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Filed under D - Loose Bloggers Consortium

Feeling redundant? Be thankful you’re not an Irish racehorse.

Shergar - One titan of the turf to escape the knacker's yard. (Or did he become the world's most expensive hamburgers? The mystery continues...)

I could have called this – They shoot horses, don’t they? But with friends going through or facing redundancy – or like myself having been made (voluntarily) redundant – I’ve gone a different direction.

I’ve been told I have a tendency – a talent or a failing – to see positive aspects to seemingly dire scenarios. Perhaps this is an example. So without wishing to minimise the pain of redundancy, it’s better than a quick trip to the donkey butcher.

Or perhaps this would work better as a metaphor for Ireland’s current economic ills. In fact, skip the metaphor, it’s a direct result of it.

If you’re an animal lover, look away now. (Though there are a couple of very cute horsies at the bottom.) Continue reading

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How to come back from being burned at the stake

This isn’t about the furious row, nor the racism (real or imagined) that preceded it, nor the burning at the stake that followed it. It’s about the unexpected good thing that happened next. Continue reading

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Filed under language, politics

13 gifts from Basel to the world

  1. Barca or Basel?

    Basel or Barca?

    BARCA. FC Barcelona comes from Basel. Barca was co-founded by a Swiss guy, Johann (who became Joan) Gamper who was allegedly inspired by FC Basel. Both teams play in red and blue. Both are FCB. Both have the same football.

  2. BABIES. All babies come from Basel. You just need to look at all the storks pootling around the fields.
  3. LSD. LSD comes from Basel. It was made by local chemist Albert Hoffman in 1938, though he didn’t realise until 1943 when he accidentally absorbed some through his fingertips. He described the sensation:  “I sank into a not unpleasant intoxicated-like condition, characterized by an extremely stimulated imagination. In a dreamlike state, with eyes closed (I found the daylight to be unpleasantly glaring), I perceived an uninterrupted stream of fantastic pictures, extraordinary shapes with intense, kaleidoscopic play of colors. After some two hours this condition faded away.”
  4. ISRAEL. Israel comes from Basel. Continue reading

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Filed under life