Richard gets “speculative”.
Now, there’s a lot of bad shit written about the Taleban. There’s the whole treatment of women issue, ethnic massacres and persecution — and, yes, they were a bit too pally with Osama bin Laden for most people’s taste. But having today read the article quoted below, I’m beginning to wonder if, perhaps, they don’t actually have, you know, a good side.
Looks like someone in Afghanistan’s been watching Ant and Dec’s Saturday Night Takeaway, methinks! (Actually, now that I think about it, maybe it wasn’t the Taleban at all! Our troops are indeed a brave bunch, but everyone has their limit… right?)
(Yeah, okay, I admit it — I’m quite fond of Ant and Dec, too, and wouldn’t really want anything bad to happen to them… honest ;) )
It has taken a whole year – but London mayor Boris Johnson has finally got his own back on Arnold Schwarzenegger.
As he was waiting to address last year’s Tory conference via video link, the California Governor seemed highly amused by Mr Johnson’s speaking style.
In a a clip which became a hit on YouTube, he can be heard whispering to aides about Mr Johnson “fumbling”.
But now the London mayor has had the last the laugh, describing “Arnie” as a “monosyllabic Austrian cyborg”.
The perfect way to start a Monday morning. I do, however, think it’s a little early to claim that Boris has had the last laugh. There’s no telling what the monosyllabic Austrian cyborg might do next.
Not to worry, though, I’m sure Boris will be more than a match… as long as it doesn’t get physical…
Death comes to us all. There’s a cheery thought for a Sunday afternoon. The Grim Reaper gives a swing of his sythe and before we know it, that’s that. It’s little use bemoaning or denying the fact, one day — hopefully far into the future — we are all destined to cop it.
So what can we do in the meantime but laugh at the possibility? After all, if you don’t laugh at the ridiculousness of it all, what else is there to do but hope for an afterlife? (And you all know my views on that!)
With this in mind — and in an attempt to lift your spirits after such a depressing opening — I thought I’d share some of my favourite famous last words with you. I’m not sure just how genuine they are and, frankly, I can’t be arsed verifying them (it’s not like they’re going to sue me, now, is it?) So take them with a pinch of salt and bear in mind that I’m sharing them because I believe that if they aren’t true, they bloody well should be!
- “I’ve never felt better.” — Douglas Fairbanks Sr.
- “I’ve had eighteen straight whiskies, I think that’s the record…” — Dylan Thomas.
- “Woe is me. Methinks I’m turning into a god.” — Vespasian, Roman Emperor. (I always find such ambition impressive!)
- “I’d hate to die twice. It’s so boring.” — Richard Feynman. (I couldn’t leave Richard out now, could I?)
- “Damn it . . . Don’t you dare ask God to help me.” — Joan Crawford. (Once a bitch, always a bitch — good luck, God!)
- “I do not have to forgive my enemies. I have had them all shot.” — Ramon Narvaez, 18th-century Spanish politician and general.
- “Tomorrow, I shall no longer be here.” — Nostradamus. (Now why couldn’t he be as clear and concise with the rest of his sodding prophesies!)
- “Do you know where I can get any shit?” — Lenny Bruce.
Today, in spite of it being a Saturday, I seem to have got rather a lot done on the outline for The Dummy — and it would seem (shock, horror) that I’m writing… are you ready for this?… sure?… absolutely positive?…
… it would seem I’m writing a family saga! Stylistically, it has the feel of a 19th-century novel (or the outline at least suggests that), but with a surreal, 21st-century magical realism twist. It’s going to be a pretty big book, I think, but what the hell.
And that’s all I’m telling you for now… really ;)
Elvis Presley once had a hairdresser called Sal Orifice!
Can you imagine going through school with a name like that? I bet that was a (w)hole lot of fun!
(Sorry, that’s the best I can do on a Friday!)
This morning I’ve mainly been working on outlines for The Dummy and researching Whooping Cough. I’m looking for early 20th Century “remedies” for the condition, and I’m not having a great deal of luck.
This is pretty much all I’ve been able to find so far. Anyone have any ideas they might like to share? I’m specifically looking for traditional and folk treatments from around 1915 or before, preferably ones that would have been used in the north-east of England.
In other news, The Realm of the Hungry Ghosts has now been sent off.
“Republican and Democratic parties have reached an agreement on “the fundamentals” of a deal to bailout Wall Street, according to Christopher Dodd, head of the Senate Banking Committee.
Mr Dodds emerged from a meeting with leading American lawmakers to announce that he thought Congress could act within the “next few days” to pass a bill which would allow the Treasury to buy up to $700 billion of troubled assets in a bid to restore financial stability.”
I just love the bit about restoring financial stability. This may prevent a US economic depression, but a considerable recession is still well and truly on the cards. Financial stability is still a long way off, in my humble opinion…
“And that’s why books are never going to die. It’s impossible. It’s the only time we really go into the mind of a stranger, and we find our common humanity doing this. So the book doesn’t only belong to the writer, it belongs to the reader as well, and then together you make it what it is.”
The perfect expression of my own thoughts and feelings regarding the acts of writing and reading. This is one of the many reasons why books are so important to me.
One of the things that I’ve always found to be something of a letdown with WordPress is the way in which it manages visitor comments. I’ve yearned for the kind of threading option used by lesser blog hosts — a system that allows you to reply more clearly to certain individuals with less likelihood of misunderstanding. And, finally, it seems we are going to get it… and a whole lot more.
Automattic, the folk behind WordPress, has now acquired Intense Debate — a comment system that “enhances and encourages discussion on your blog or website”.
This place just keeps getting better and better! Great work, guys!