Tag Archives: book
I have long thought of producing an ebook, thinking that it must be a relatively easy thing to do and I’m sure that it is. Certainly it would be to my grandchildren but I’m afraid an innate failing of mine being a short term attention span, which now coupled with practically zero short term memory for things that I rapidly lose interest in, is making it a difficult task. Do read with a very large element of acceptance of my ignorance on going digital Read more of this post
Sunday on Facebook: It is over two years since I wrote a piece to coincide with Banned Books Week in the USA. Rather than focus on books that are banned — particularly in the USA and the UK — I decided on two examples of books modified to satisfy a modern readership and one book as an allegory for internet censorship, which may pose an even greater threat to personal freedom. Finally making reference to how state censorship grows in proportion to the public’s access to information, the post itself being an indication of why internet freedom to publish material is so important.
Francis never tired of walking Offa’s Dyke, especially the climb to Dinas Brân where the surrounding views always rewarded his effort to get there and never failed to reinforce the emotional bond he held for the place. The views were spectacular with Moel Morfydd, Moel y Gamelin and Pen-y-Garth standing on the far ridge like sentinels guarding Dyffryn Dyfrdwy. He used the Welsh names for the distant hilltops, the Dee Valley and even castle Dinas Brân, pronouncing them in the lilting Welsh of the Marches that Hywel had taught him many years ago. His Welsh had become so good that he was taken for Welshman when he spoke it. Read more of this post
Thomas Gresham had served three Tudor monarchs as their Royal Merchant¹ in Antwerp and had grown rich acting on their behalf. However, his success in arranging England’s financial transactions with bankers and money lenders was not always favourably received. It had also made him enemies in both financial and political circles. Some believed that he would often quite deliberately manipulate the money markets — cleverly duping them in his games of thimblerig² — disadvantaging them financially and often politically. Knowing that his activities in Antwerp and elsewhere had made him these enemies, Gresham had an awareness of danger when confronted by it. This was obviously no chance encounter with a stranger who called himself Frances Walsingham. Not only had he identified Gresham in the crowded Antwerp bourse, he had addressed him by name and acknowledged by name his two factors Clough and Spritwell. The significance of this was not lost on Gresham nor was Walsingham’s demeanour, which was that of a dangerous man who it would be unwise to cross. Hoping that his alarm was not apparent, Gresham enquired if he could be of any assistance. Speaking in a low voice, almost a whisper, Walsingham told Gresham that he was under instructions to deliver a message to him only and that they should find somewhere quiet where they be could be certain of privacy. Read more of this post
Some three years ago I wrote the post Machismo and the modern man, this was a commentary on the emasculation of the modern male and a masculine response. There was a strong connection with Australia (Oz), particularly the influence of Germaine Greer. Ms Greer is a chicken come home to roost so to speak, possibly the repatriated progeny born of colonists transported for their disruption to the harmonious order of society. Yet it’s to the men of Oz that we should express our gratitude. They have responded to this ’emasculation’ by creating a shed culture for the alpha male. Read more of this post
When I first began blogging on My Telegraph there seemed to be a continual cry of, OH NO! Not another blog on blogging! My search for a ‘decent’ site had led me there and having lurked off stage – so to speak – I decided to blog there, beginning with non-controversial blogs. I thought the site often treated newcomers in a very unfriendly manner, certainly not in any way that could be termed ‘an honest critique’ of their blog content or its presentation.
Some five or more years later, the world has moved on. Amateur bloggers like myself who now know how the professional media have commandeered the internet – if they’re wise – have given up any delusions of grandeur that they may have held, or are captives of that media. Still, blogging does give voice to the ‘common man’ (I’m sure you ladies know my intent) and both the professional media and amateur bloggers are learning to use ‘blogs’ effectively. So! Cue Aaron Copland and Fanfare for the Common Man (article). Read more of this post
The Boxing Day Hunt – Perfect Entertainment after Christmas Bingeing looked to be an interesting post on a one time favourite rural pastime. Written in 2012, it opening with:
One of the tedious things about being poor is that one can’t indulge in pastimes like hunting. But one can turn up, as a supporter, and soak up the atmosphere (and maybe a bit of the Port). It really is enormous fun. If you haven’t done it, why not try it this year, on Boxing Day? Read more of this post
Feigned deafness is the theme of ‘The Christmas Present’ by Richmal Crompton, a story that I came across in The Best Short Stories Of 1922. I doubt very much if even my children, and certainly not my grandchildren, could comprehend a society in which women could be so subservient to men that they found it convenient to feign deafness. Then a story from nearly one hundred years ago is from a time unknown to them and seen as having little relevance to their own lives. For me, it’s from an age known to my parents and reflects attitudes that I am familiar with in my own lifetime. Read more of this post
The genre used by C. S. Lewis in The Chronicles of Narnia, and his friend J. R. R. Tolkien in The Lord Of The Rings is now used to popularize the concept of some supernatural force, contrary to that intended by Lewis and Tolkien who both attributed supernatural forces to the divine.
The short story ‘La Main d’écorchée‘ (The Flayed Hand) by Guy de Maupassant was initially published by L’Almanach lorrain de Pont-à-Mousson in 1875, under the pseudonym of Joseph Prunier. Some eight years later Maupassant reworked ‘La Main d’écorchée’ and published it simply as ‘La Main’ or ‘The Hand’. Maupassant claimed that in his teens he was shown a mummified hand by the poet Algernon Swinburne, this incident being interpreted as the inspiration for his earlier short story ‘La Main Ecorchée’. Read more of this post