30 April 2010

"Something to make myself useful"

Now I know what the 'Cruelest Woman in Corfu' did before she turned Domestic Goddess.


Do you find this, too?

Posh party, le tout Corfou swanning, witty banter, beauteous women, knowledgeable sighs and gestures in re the 'economy' ... sage nods, furrowed brows.

Later in a discreet corner:

"While I've got you on your own, just refresh my memory, quick run-down ... where we're heading ... broad overview ... ball-park figure ... worst-case scenario ... I mean, what could actually happen ... do we wake up one morning and we're all ... "

  • Now you can keep drinking and escape those endless tutorials of Grik Ekonomie 101.
  • The Ec Ed of the Telegraph has come up with a beginners’ guide
  • Good cheat sheet: Acropolis Now Redux
  • Out with Greece! ~ 3 painful truths
  • 29 April 2010

    Gordon Gaffe

    I vote the new symbol for the Labour party - a Radio Mic

    That humble broadcasting aid will forever more be linked to Brown's mega bish and the rulebook rewritten to cover basic precautions for its use.

    Anyone in any further doubt over the power of our brave new online world need only call up a timeline of 'BigotGate' to observe an entire election campaign halted in its tracks.

    Mic off: What surprises me most is the sheer amateurism of not assigning a staff member to handle all media matters: ensuring GB has a working mic in order to be heard; making sure they retrieve it pronto once the job is done.

    Maybe I'm being thick, but who did the radio mic belong to? If it belonged to the radio station, how can they afford to let all their interviewees blithely drive away with them? Could get costly ... unless it's a good investment leaving the 'mark' to wander 'wired' in case they blab something even newsier-worthy.

    The breathy creak of northern bosoms

    27 April 2010



    My very good friend, the nonpareil Matt Norris has a guitar site that is a must-visit, so click yer schtick and do that thing you do (as those noble early Amazon leads would exhort in a Cubicle Before Time).

    Come to think of it, Matt has an even nonpareiler wife. Me too, I've never worked it out how guys like us manage to land such class act women.

    (There is a God, but for His sake keep it under yer poncho.)

    OMG - look at that PRS there ... I know Roy Kendall of the dynamite Blues Galaxy plays a Paul Reed Smith but I'm not sure if it's this one.

    Lemme shove a photo up and we can be sure.

    By the by, I'm told Blues G have a gig coming up soonish at Stavros Bar, Kondokali, Corfu.

    I have to add Greece because there's a New York version ~ it doesn't half make me sit up when Google Alert reports a drive-by shooting.

    Hollow laff

    Watch this space for BG dates.

    Let me also send Roy this link ~ he has a cavern of guitars but might still find something to drool over here.

    Cascade are also on facebook so ditto that thang, my guitarista buddies ...

    Check out Matt's Band


    For the technically challenged

    26 April 2010


    Great fun ~ and humiliating and ominous for the future.

    Lotus munching has not only destroyed the grey cells but the will to engage these tests mano a mano.

    22 April 2010


    Some unused ideas for the UK release of 'I Am Love'

    21 April 2010


    See that proud banner fluttering outside the fort and Bosketto Garden?

    You will be hearing much more about Mr Cohen so wise up while you have the time.

    Pencil in May 2010 for a few literary fireworks.

    Watch this space.

    18 April 2010

    Balanced Moviegoer

    Wow! Am I a renaissance flick fan or what?

    In one URL: Tilda Swanton in "I am Lurve", but slide on down, buddy, because below that is a trailer for something called 'The Expendables'.

    Check. Out. The Cast. Ohh man ...

    And will someone tell me what Ol' Man Stallone is doing looking like that? Check. Out. Those 12-packs.

    17 April 2010

    Can You disappear?

    I'm going to end up on the run like this.

    I just hope I can plan it so I give them the longest slip.

    Breakdown of contract

    In the Irish Times via alert Richard Pine of the Durrell School Corfu:

  • A breakdown of the contract between citizens and authority

  • LETTER FROM GREECE: The horrendous debt of every man, woman and child has brought hostility and resistance on to the streets

  • SAMUEL JOHNSON said of fear of death that it “concentrates the mind wonderfully”.

    So too does fear of bankruptcy.

    In fact, it takes a complete financial collapse such as the current Greek crisis to bring home to ordinary folks the destitution of their society.



    I trust you all spotted my deliberate mistake in the Comments - omitting the 's' on 'Islands'.

    I can't be bothered to go back in and correct it, which would involve deleting the original and reposting with that one correction.

    On the other hand, I can't bear the thought of misleading all those relieved types out there, throwing up their hands in delight and sending Porto the moggie flying as they exclaim:

    "About time, too!

    Hear that, darling? Some publisher's finally had the sense to commission a decent history of Cerigo.

    Bravo Signal Books of Oxford, what?"

    16 April 2010


    Long-awaited much hyped Kitty Kelley biog of cuddly Mizz Oprah is out.

    Despite Opie's pressure on the top chat shows to cold-shoulder La Kelley, the very fact of its ostracization has ensured it mega publicity.

    Possibly more than if Oprah had left it all alone in the first place.

    Luscious literate 'HitGurl' Hadley Freeman lifting the Grauniad's 'Lost In Showbiz' page out of its usual doldrums by using Kelley's informed razor job to put its own badass boot in.

    Only that crisp English major style could whup our weighty freighty Winfrey every which way and - er - loose.

    Watch La Plumpa go rump rampant.

    Literary shuckin' and jivin' at its best, our fave darkie diva down on the mat 'n' writhin'.

    Vet is Pa: Oh and look who they dredged up to pose as pater. Surely they can do better than that?

    Token Tory rosette-toting joker

    Amusing piece by Camilla Long on the trail of a right twonker, 'token rosette-toting joker, Jacob Rees-Mogg, the Tory parliamentary candidate for Somerset North East and David Cameron’s worst nightmare.

    Educated at Eton and Oxford, the cane-stroking hedge fund manager is an immaculately besuited Lurch lookalike who has always refused to tone down his act, or as he puts it, “drop my aitches.”'

    Very witty bit of writing, in fact, and I hope he got his elusive leg thoroughly pulled wherever he dared pop up.

    "The place is quiet and manicured and the gates are open when we arrive so I gingerly walk up the drive and ring the doorbell.

    The door is answered by a housekeeper who tells me she doesn’t know where he is and or when he’ll be back. Obviously, she’s been speaking to Margaret, a suspicion that is confirmed when, barely reaching the bottom of the drive, my mobile phone rings.

    It’s the editor’s office: they have had a complaint that I’ve been 'trespassing on Jacob Rees-Mogg’s land, causing a disturbance and making a general nuisance of myself', which is probably the most elaborate description of knocking on doors that I’ve ever encountered.

    How does Jacob do it himself? Stand at gates and throw leaflets?

    I decide to go back to Keynsham and confront Margaret."

    Lovely turns of phrase, has that Ms Long:

  • Nailing Rees-Mogg’s campaign manager Margaret as 'a flinty rural matron masterminding — well, what? Nothing, apparently.'

  • "We call Margaret a few times, but she’s still masterminding her pen-top."

    Masterminding her pen-top! Saayy good ~ I must remember that for my next speech about the local Greek bureaucracy.

  • 15 April 2010


    A trailer


    Yo! There are no UN-sexy photos of the fitissima Zuzana Rozsivalova, so you will just have to believe me that I hemi-demi-semi quaveringly enjoy torturing myself on my anti-flab régime by watching ZR put herself through her routines.

    Nasty job, I agree, but Life's not a doddle either.

  • Her full body boot camp exhausts me just to watch.

  • The URL calls this a sexy workout

  • You ask me, they're all purty sexeh.

    On the other hand, you never heard me say that that because - cough - we're all here for the press-ups, innit?

    Keep that leg straight in the back row - yes, you with the "I'm a Hoover Harridan" T-shirt

    Imagine Zusana is some coarse bull-necked drill sergeant. Yeh, right.

  • Abs Assassin, she calls this ~ wonderful name.

  • I posted somewhere my grave suspicion that 60% of her viewers (at a very conservative guess) log on with no intention of joining her in even a shallow knee bend.
  • 14 April 2010

    Heart of Australia

    My lovely and talented friend Louise du Toit sends me this message.

    I am very happy to comply. Do listen to the song - she writes beautifully.

    And do what you can to spread the message, drive it home.

    "My dear friend, take a minute of your time and travel with me to the world of the wild horses...watching this video will support them in their plight for survival!

    Please forward it to your circle of caring friends, so that the message about their salvation can be spread out around the globe.

    Love, peace and happiness

    Louise du Toit"

    This is a song which I wrote for the Wild Horses of Australia, the Brumbies.

    It was initiated by my friend, Vahana Hilke Eitner, and based on an original poem by Laura Kett.

    Music, arrangement, performance and recording by Louise du Toit in Greece, 2010.

    Lyrics by Laura Kett, adapted by Louise du Toit - 26 March 2010.

    Digital mastering at Studio Natural Sound in Athens.

    Video created and produced by Louise du Toit

    Copyrights to the song are reserved by Louise du Toit.

  • How you can help: International Fund for Horses
  • Tuesday's Horse


    The must-watch movie of the season

    What people have said:

  • The always-shrewd Derek Malcolm (who I'm delighted to see is still around)
  • The kind of write-up I like to read: thorough, literate. Never heard of this Music etc etc mag but doesnt mean it can't hack it.
  • Excellent Q&A
  • Blithering Idiot: Tilda Swinton does NOT 'find herself in a torrid love affair with her husband's business partner.'

    Bufone. It's her son's.


  • 13 April 2010

    Greece: charity case

    Scroll down until you hit the Greece story

    "One wag has set up a page on the JustGiving website: not to raise money for charity, but to “save Greece”.

    Jim Croft's plea for cash — which is perhaps a little unkind to our Hellenic friends — reads:

    “Greece is in deep financial crisis. Donating here will go a long way to helping these poor people who have lived beyond their means for the last 10 years and are now struggling to pay their bills. Please think of them as they avoid their taxes and then blame evil speculators rather than facing up to the fact that lying about their national statistics was probably more of a factor.”

    He goes on: “Please donate in pounds as all Euro payments will soon be subject to a 50% haircut.”

    The actual charity that is getting the money is Oxfam — perhaps suggesting that Greece will soon need the global poverty charity's help. There's a long way to go though: Croft has raised just under £500 at the moment, against a target of £100 million. One person, who has donated a tenner, says: “With friends like you, who needs the IMF?”

    Anyone feeling generous, should go to http://www.justgiving.com/save Greece

    [Which link does not work but you could try the cached version].

    12 April 2010


    This hour's the very crisis of your fate;
    Your good or ill; your infamy or fame,
    And all the colour of your life depends
    On this important now.

    ~ Dryden's Spanish Friar


    The diminutive lady is not singing. It sure ain't over. Typical.

    I bet PC Pong is gloating.

    Stark and unambiguous: The BS bully's shame 'n' guilt won't lie down. Do you hear the tumbrils rumble?

    Riot Cop Cleared

    Police's public order tactics "inadequate."

    Acquittal an assault on justice ~ Of course it is, darling, but don't you realise the galvanising effect this fucked justice will have on Pongo's foes and grudgers?

    This is when knives come out and stool-pigeons find they can fly.

    Nary a worry, sweetheart. It's only just begun.

    West Ham wonkers: Do read the comments from this bunch, too funny. You couldn't invent more typical brutish troglodyte reactions than wot the WH grunts dish up here.

    Gawping in disbelief ~ The always level-headed George Monbiot spot on in his noting that "the ridiculous acquittal of a Met sergeant for striking a protester armed with a drink carton proves how important it is to try police officers by jury ... I don't think I'm the only one gawping in disbelief at yesterday's acquittal of Delroy Smellie."

    Not just gawping: spitting gagging vomiting up shreds of belief in common sense.

    You only have to look at what actually went on to lament the plummet in our safety from the uniformed thugs walking our streets.

    Risk adversity. How very appropriate and coincidental that my other blog-bear is baby basher Venal Balls about whom 'Sir' David Latham has just pronounced in terms more suitable for PC Pong.

    Oy, Sir Dave ~ all very well talking about Darth and Dora Public being "risk-averse over parole." How's about those of us who feel distinctly risk-averse about uncontrolled Smell-Dels lashing out willy-nilly with 'extendable metal weapons known as an asp'.

    There's less than meets the eye here and I wonder if the truth will come out.

    The District Judge with the job of ensuring odour-free justice is Daphne Wickham whose reputation for a straight gavel precedes her.

    Let's see how she handles the spotlight on this one.

    Notes for Editors: Daphne Wickham was called to the Bar in 1967. Her first senior appointment was in September 2003 as a Metropolitan Stipendiary Magistrate, later promoted to Deputy Senior District Judge (Magistrates' Courts).

    Miss Wickham replaced Mr Timothy Workman who had been appointed Senior District Judge (Chief Magistrate) the previous March.

    Learning his fate - And how very sensible of the papers to take from my own headline in re the 'fate' word.

    When you blog it right, there ain't no way the mainstreamers can word it better.

    Taste of Lies to Come - Smellie's weak defence comes down to 'self defence', despite all the photos and videos that give the lie.

    But I have learned one thing: the rod with which he beat La Fisher is called an 'asp'. Nay, an 'extendable metal weapon, known as an asp', to be precise.

    Very cleopatran.

    "Nicholas Paul, of the Crown Prosecution Service, said he was justified when he shouted at her, pushed her back and struck her with the back of his hand.

    But he said the officer went too far when he struck Ms Fisher across the thigh with the extendable metal weapon, known as an asp."

    'Aspers' is so clearly one of those who should never be allowed near a uniform.

    It will be educational to follow the continuing stench of this case, and what fun to be able to roll out old postings and juxtapose them with the squirming and worming lies PC Smellie will be coming up with.

    What's needed here is reminders of how Delroy behaved at the time.

  • I've already suggested that looped film of Smellie's assault on Nicola Fisher should be running day and night in all police training centres and public waiting rooms.

  • His mealy-mouthed defence whinings should be printed large and posted up next to actual photographs:

    • Acted "in self-defence because he felt threatened by her and feared for his and his colleagues' safety."

    • Initially hit Nicola Fisher with a "clearance strike" by hand.

      • "Clearance strike", eh? That's one to add to my Dictionnaire d'Ordure Policière

    • Fisher was holding a large carton of orange juice in one hand and a camera in the other.

    • [Smellie] struck her ... when she surged towards him again, fearing the objects in her hands could be used as weapons against him.

      • I can see how a 12-gauge Brownie 127 could be used to take out a paficist gnome like Aspers - but a grande carton of OJ?

        • "I know what you're thinking.

          Did she take six sips or only five?

          Well, to tell you the truth, in all this excitement I kind of lost track myself. But being as this is a whole liter of Sunkist, the juiciest OJ in the world, and would quench your head clean off, you've got to ask yourself one question: Do I feel thirsty?

          Well, do ya, punk?"

    • Video evidence showed he struck the baton against her thigh twice in a matter of seconds.
    • "I had stepped back to give the crowd space and to reassess and scan for other dangers but the crowd, including Ms Fisher, still ended up closing me down ... I was not aware of any colleagues who were facing the crowd in Threadneedle Street. I thought from the moment I turned that I was by myself with a large threat in front of me."
    • [Smellie] said that, after striking her:
      "I hoped that she would either fall to the ground, drop the weapons or go away and get back, either one of those things she had been asked to do on many occasions.

      "But certainly to ensure that she was not able to use those weapons or that the weapons were not able to be used."

    • Asked how hard he hit Fisher, Smellie replied he was aware that she was "significantly smaller". He added:
      "However it had to be enough to achieve the objective of negating the threat."
      • Got to love those euphemisms ~ 'negating the threat'

  • OJ versus broken arm
  • Dosh for cosh but testimony kyboshed
  • Hilarious bleat: A 'Michael' moans about Borromeo's 'poor research' ... yak yak emotive, prejudiced and legally flawed ...piece of
    "agenda-driven diatribe that will feed on the antagonistic tendencies of her followers and grate on the police ... [here it comes] "I would recommend that she reads my book if she’s alarmed that ‘the doors are open for further police violence’ and certainly before she embarrasses herself with another unenlightened article on a subject she clearly knows nothing about.

    The Guardian should be ashamed of itself for allowing such hysterical nonsense into print."