Thursday, June 08, 2017

Dis or Dat Utopian

If I come across the word "dystopian" one more time I shall be left with no choice but to look it up and find out what it means.

Sunday, June 04, 2017


I have spent many a happy hour poring over maps and atlases of all descriptions and have always prided myself on having a reasonably precise idea of where places, rivers and countries lie in relation to one another.

Imagine my astonishment, therefore, to discover at this late stage, that Edinburgh is in fact situated on the south bank of the river Forth and not, as I had always supposed, on the north side; and that Istanbul stretches out to the north and not to the south of the Sea of Marmara.

Monday, May 08, 2017

Dateline London

Marville Road, SW6
I am struck once again by the opulence of the modern Dijon railway station, so much better in almost every way than the one I can remember from thirty years ago. The only thing missing is an escalator to lift the ageing population up to platform level. Since most of us now fall into that  category and since platform level is where we want to be, this is an important point on the debit side., but still... To continue for a moment in a carping vein, I think the Eurostar is about due for an upgrade. It's increasingly only fit for sardines.

Back on "home" territory once more, I cannot fail to be impressed by the sheer wealth of central London. Pedestrians are wearing the very latest in Italian fashion, and waiters, shopkeepers, etc. are genuinely pleased to see me as long as I'm buying something.

But enough of this flippery.The truth is I feel lost as never before. I am just too slow to keep up with the pace of modern life and conversation. Given a choice, for example, between the comfort of the modern railway station, automobile, hotel and so on  and the same thing of thirty years ago, I'm  sure that none of us of my age in the prosperous West  would hesitate for even a second. I can conceive of someone in his 'fifties, weighed down by the cares of life, looking forward to the limited horizons of old age, but I  would so much rather go back to a time when I was mentally more alert. It would be nice  to be nimbler too and there is no doubt that I  would feel  better in myself if I  were not so chronically stiff and deaf. I'm not complaining and I'm not whining; it happens to everyone. It's just that what I can only describe as old age has crept up on me  suddenly and caught me unawares.Just before I close this vexed question, and as a glimpse into the mind of the person writing this blog, I  have to report that I have forgotten my pin code TWICE in the course of two weeks. B. Capel-Dunn, 72 not out, retired hurt!

Friday, April 14, 2017

In The Duke Wore Jeans (England, 1958), John Wayne plays the part of an English noblemen anxious to wed his daughter to a Texas oilman (Tommy Steele). The film raises a number of interesting questions, some of which have not been satisfactorily answered to this very day. We know, for example, that the Duke wore jeans (wranglers) but that's about as far as it goes. Did he wear Jean's? Surely not as this would have been an extremely tight fit. Even supposing for a moment that he did in fact wear Jean's, then whose did Jean wear? Did she wear the Duke's? Again, this beggars belief. How could she possibly be expected to wear the Duke's jeans? It just doesn't add up.

But perhaps we are asking the wrong question.  If the question is "Whose jeans did Jean wear?" the whole thing is absurd, for reasons hinted at above. But if, on the other hand, the real question is "the Duke wore Jean's  what? it begins to make a curious sort of sense. The Duke was in fact wearing Jean's undergarments. And by the same token, Jean was, unbeknownst to him, wearing the Duke's underclothes.This explanation also holds up if you believe, as I do, that the true title of the film is "The Duke wore Gene's". Of course, now I understand! The Duke wore Gene Kelly's undergarments.

Monday, April 03, 2017

Looking for Trouble

Here I was, happy enough to make do with the same Blogger layout or "theme" I have used for years, when my good friend, fellow blogger and Beaumont survivor Jerry, asked if I could suggest any tweaks to the appearance of his blog. Mindful of the havoc I have wreaked (wrought?) in recent years when called in for "assistance" by innocent parties, I felt obliged to warn Jerry off, but, imbued as I am with the death wish, of course I could not resist "looking under the hood" myself, the results of which you now see before your startled eyes. 


First swallow sighted on March 30th.

When Tom Stoppard was asked what his play Rosencrantz and Guildenstern are Dead was about, he replied that it was about to make him a lot of money.

Saturday, April 01, 2017

Morse and Co.

I never realised what dangerous places Oxford and Cambridge were until I started binge-watching Endeavour, Lewis and Grantchester on Netflix. On the strength of my encounters so far, Oxford comes across as marginally more gruesome. You see, once a murder is committed you can be pretty sure that another is not far behind. As the old saying goes, it never rains but it pours. In the end, of course, Detective Inspector Lewis and Detective Sergeant Hathaway always get their man or, it pains me to write this, woman, but not before the cauldron of jealousy, hate and lust that is university life has been exposed to our horrified gaze. I think I would have turned down a place in college even if I had been accepted.

If you have ever wondered what happened in later life to those who avoided being murdered while up at Oxford or Cambridge, you will find the answer in the novels of Agatha Christie, the difference being that the task of tracking down the culprits now falls upon a private detective.

Tuesday, March 21, 2017

Breaking Vows

  • You won't believe what the Duchess of Windsor looks like now
  • The Brexit sign means happy motoring
  • Unemployment drops to lowest rate since 1575
  • Brexit won't mean shift in policy towards migrating birds, says Boris
  • Donald Trump shows off his new state-of-the-art telephone
  • Ireland angers voices over Brexit
  • Polish MEP skinned alive for suggesting that men are less intelligent than women
  • Bert Weedon calls for expulsion of Turkey from Eurovision Song Thrush Contest
  • Article 50 accidentally triggered. Man held
  • Tories face tax revolt from Welsh bards

Mont Blanc

Dis or Dat Utopian

If I come across the word "dystopian" one more time I shall be left with no choice but to look it up and find out what it means....