Now incorporating the Sudbury Hill Times

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

I raise a glass to Boris Johnson

When given a choice, always vote for the one who would not side with mass murder for any cause, that's what I say. Boris Johnson would be the first politician to be hanged by any tyrant - such as Livingstone, if he could - because Boris speaks as he finds and he stands up for the human, not for dogma. He does not finesse with questions of human rights with hanging mullahs and truck bombing fascists etc etc. Etc.

Ossian

Monday, April 28, 2008

Weather report



Garden lightvessel at 7:35 pm GMT, Willesden, north, thundery backing lilac, good.



Dodder, German Shepherd and Haverty, east-southeast, 8:18 pm, fair, later unfair.



Pleiades, Harlots, Magdalen, north-northwest, 8:48 pm, black, dismal to poor, rising.

Willesden Observatory/Wreuters

Sunday, April 27, 2008

Cafe session

There was a beautiful and brilliant session in the Budapest Cafe Bar today by Andrea Pope with keyboard accompanist and vocalist, Steve Cox. Over goulash etc, we were treated to wonderful Lloyd Webber, Sondheim and other show songs as well as such delights as Autumn Leaves with "French words" and "English words" ... "not a translation". I was particularly knocked out by Andrea Pope's exquisite rendition of "Or am I losing my mind", which showed her vocal range, very strong throughout from sultry low tones through winsome middle and into effortless, mellow highs.

Walking down the high road to Cafe Budapest we passed a large corner premises with a name indecipherable to anyone who cannot read the Cyrillic alphabet - so I don't know what it's called - with signs promising Bulgarian cuisine and booze. Further along, would you believe a Moldovan cafe, then the Budapest cafe. That's all in about three blocks. At the other end we have some Polish shops, in amongst the Thai and what not. It's a great road for guaging the kind of people arriving in London from the rest of the world.

On the subject of the changing High Road: The Spotted Dog has closed! This is unbelievable. It is said that more taxi drivers know where the Spotted Dog is than know where Willesden is. It's been there since the 19th century.

Bartell Darcy

Friday, April 25, 2008

Night vermin

Letters



They fly tip by night (Rowdon Avenue)



Somebody saved about ten pounds by dumping this rubbish in a residential street, creating a road safety and health hazard and cost to everybody else. They should be shot.

Branson Chiles, Brondesbury

<< Previous | Next >> (fly-tipping)

Monday, April 21, 2008

Gladstone Park, Sunday



To the memory of prisoners of war and victims of concentration camps 1914-1945*

"They are a five-chapter novel, each chapter describing a successive state of mind of internment: stupor after going into captivity; longing for freedom; fighting against gloom; hope lost; and hope again" Fritz Kormis. (More)

Ossian

* I'm sure the sculptor would have wanted to dedicate this also to imprisoned children, such as those unfortunates in the news this week.

Friday, April 18, 2008

Lewisham: confluence of the Quaggy and Ravensbourne

"The confluence has influenced human settlement and communications from at least the 6th century A.D. The village originally sprang up here..." (information plaque)



The Quaggy (right) joins the Ravensbourne (left, with a weir just out of view) before heading north to join the Thames at Deptford.



While I was standing there killing time on Thursday morning, waiting for a train, two colourful mallards fluttered down from overhead into the confluence, like emissaries from Eden.



A beautiful view down at the Quaggy from Station Road, with wood pigeon below, but spoiled by plastic bags in the trees. (Satellite view)

Harry Lemon (Foreign Correspondent)

Boris on Heathrow



"[Addition of a third runway would] entrench one of the most grievous planning errors of the 1950's and 1960's by expanding Heathrow, the only airport I'm aware of in any major democracy in which the planes are required to fly over the principal conurbation in order to land, something that most other countries ban now as being unsafe..." (Boris Johnson)

This is exactly what I think and feel about flights over cities. They should be banned, not increased. Let's kick out the lazy and dopey New Labour mayor and let him spend more time with his families.

BackBoris.com

Zoz

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Schoolboy corrects Nasa calculation

1 in 450 chance of asteroid impact (Science | guardian.co.uk)

"Both Nasa and Nico agreed that the asteroid would create a ball of iron and iridium 320 metres wide and weighing 200bn tonnes, which would crash into the Atlantic, if it collided with Earth. The impact would create huge tsunami waves, destroying coastlines and inland areas while creating a thick cloud of dust that would darken the skies indefinitely."

No more Willesden sunsets, then.

Monday, April 14, 2008

Winter Solstice, Cardington Park

Overhead is opal turning sapphire, down to turquoise and then blue. The sun is cold upon the trees on the far side of the reservoir. A weeping willow, a reedy bank, a few leaves, downcast, waiting. And now three swans approach, looking for bread, expecting none. They glance, reflect and dazzle like tomblight on the darkest day.




Writing Home

Ossian

Saturday, April 12, 2008

The inimitable

Boris Johnson: My traffic wardens will save all

" 'I've lost count of the number of people who have told me they're staunch Labour supporters but they're backing me,' he says. ... He doesn't think his Eton background is a disadvantage. 'People in London don't give a monkey's where you're coming from. They want to know about your ideas.' " (Telegraph)

Plenty of laughs further down in that article. How could anybody think of voting for that monstrous bore Livingstone, when they could have Boris in charge? It would be like electing Robert Maxwell instead of ... er, Boris Johnson.

He is also looking closely at such things as why over 200 people in London Transport earn over £100,000 per year. He has some great policies, like an amnesty for illegal immigrants who have been here for years, and turning traffic wardens (actually now officially called "Civil Enforcement Officers") into helpers of the public and giving them awards of theatre tickets etc. (Nobody only Boris would have come up with that one.)

This is a creative city, not a warmongers fellow traveller/ bureaucrat's grubby and dowdy office. Boris consistently writes and speaks out from and for Humanity (something Livingstone knows zero about, being some sort of sun-hatched alien spawn) and against the Iraq war. So you know what you have to do.

Feargal Mooney (Gravitas)

Sacred River cover (2001)

 

This was a magazine project that I tried to initiate but it never happened. The brilliant picture (from Egypt) is by Anne Warwick © 2001.

Ossian

Different colour clouds

Friday, April 11, 2008

Seahorses return to Thames

National Geographic video: "April 10, 2008—Rare, short-snouted seahorses have been spotted in London's once-polluted River Thames, suggesting that efforts to clean up the river have paid off, conservationists said."

This is a beautiful video, though I don't think any Jacques Cousteau type went into the river to get that film of seahorses.

Stella Morris

Send in the bees

Tuesday, April 08, 2008

The unawarded trophy



Here transmugrified



Inscribed "The Willesden Short Story Prize 2008"



Charity auction?

Stories (at) willesdenherald . com

Poetry magazine, April 2008

Poetry in translation

Lots of enjoyable reading, as well as commentary by the translators.

Ossian

Sunday, April 06, 2008

Troublemakers carry torch through London

BBC NEWS | UK | Clashes mar Olympic torch relay

Concerned citizens tried to prevent a series of troublemakers from carrying the Beijing torch from Wembley to Stratford, but the troublemakers were guarded by a jogging phalanx of three layers of Chinese and British police, running the equivalent of the London marathon.

Zoz

Tuesday, April 01, 2008

Google to kill Blogger?

Blogger Buzz: Announcing Google Weblogs (beta): "Don’t limit yourself to “reverse chronological” publishing. Our advanced Google algorithms put your best content at the top of your blog. Even if your later work goes downhill your previous posts will still shine. ... No more template languages to mess with or sidebars to get right. Our advanced Google algorithms automatically populate your blog’s sidebar with the most relevant possible content." (Etc.)

Sounds like a complete load of tripe, ugly, exploitative, unwanted - whatever happened to "Do no evil?" The beauty of Blogger was the freedom from impositions, and the support for non-template layouts.

Zoz

Inland Revenue trials sleepworking

Letters

The Great I, Comptroller of Britain, have determined that My employees can do just as much useful work while asleep as they can while awake, and so from today they will be provided with pillows, duvets and reclining armchairs. This arrangement should enable My employees to have more quality time when they go home to their families. Additionally Derry Irvine Decorators (Liberia) Ltd. and Pincher Martin Furniture (Bahamas) Ltd. have been awarded contracts to renovate ten million houses belonging to My workers (or sleepers as they will henceforth be known). If you have any problems with this, please phone The Great Me on 01274 539628 and listen to jolly muzak, copyright © Exorbitant Tracks (Cayman Islands) Ltd., for a few hours*.

The Great I

* Long distance rates may apply. Seek permission of whoever pays the bill before phoning. Interest will be charged while you wait.

Guardian Online clippings

The simple "Clip This" link at the bottom of Guardian stories is probably the best little innovation online for a while. Here's the link to my recently started Guardian clippings.

Zoz