Archive for the ‘Thought’ Category


I stayed here for a few nights back in the 1990s when the sign looked like this:

Some year later I joined a good humoured online piss-take about the place and its specially featured COLOR TV. Someone thought they might even have phones too! I think I can see Bobba Fet coming down through the trees on the left; someone else could see it too.

Today I reminisced and had another look at motels in Asheville. Note the original COLOR TV sign has been retained. But of course. Such magnificent artifacts can be overshadowed in size and glare but never surpassed in the annals of good taste:

Looks like a set for a remake of The Postman Always Rings Twice, though you couldn’t beat Bob Rafelson’s 1981  version  with Jessica Lange and Jack Nicholson.

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on January 17, 2013 in Diary, Did, Thought No Comments »

Too tired tonight to say much but after nearly eight months of no posts here at all it struck me as time to at least get back to some free writing that isn’t just short comments on FB or such. Tired, as after an energetic floor mopping front door through to back I decided to try to fix the cooker so that it didn’t slide forward off its plinth when we pulled too strongly on the oven door, thus threatening to precipitate anything on the hob all over us – hasn’t happened yet, by sheer good luck. After much raunging about (yes it is a word, I just wrote it) the oven now seems safe.

My literature group this ‘term’ is called “A Half Century Remembered: 1900 to 1950”. Our wonderful tutor Morag Jones asked us to vote for one of three works from each of the five decades, which was a very interesting exercise for the eighteen or so members present at the last class of the previous ‘course’. The chosen works constitute quite a strange mixture of subjects, styles and authors (all male, I see, sorry Virginia Woolf and E M Delafield). Here’s the list – The Secret Agent – Conrad, for 1900-1910; Greenmantle – Buchan, for 1910-1920; The Waste Land – Eliot, for 1920-1930; Love on the Dole – Greenwood, for 1930-1940 and The Pied Piper – Shute, for 1940-1950. Incidentally, the group that voted had twice as many women as men in it. I’ll try to post some notes here about our consideration of these works, as the weeks go by. [We’ve “done” Conrad but I’m leaving that for when I’m not so tired. Supper and bed calls].

Apart from my virtually total recall of every scene and piece of dialogue from the whole of The Outlaw Josey Wales, there are many other short movie scenes that are easily recalled at random moments or when prompted into the mind’s eye by some other image or sound or remark. Two of them for me involve Robert Redford, the first is when he has just told Paul Newman, aka Butch Cassidy, that he can’t swim so he’s not going to jump into a river at the bottom of a gorge to escape from the rapidly approaching posse (“Who are those guys?” It’s all coming back). It’s just the look on his face and the seriously embarrassed, reluctant nod, in the instant before Butch bursts out laughing. Brilliant and one that just comes randomly from time to time.

The other one is going to come and go regularly if the current hot weather carries on. We’ve put up our “summer” curtains in the back room and they sometimes blow gently in and out the french doors. Every time I see that, there’s Redford again, aka Jay Gatsby, on a hot afternoon, floating on his airbed in his pool, turning at some sound to look back through the gently moving curtains hoping desperately that it’s Daisy come to him, having left Tom Buchanan for good. Of course, his tension is not ours, as we have seen Scott Wilson, great piece of acting, aka George Wilson, approaching, taking a revolver out of a crumpled brown paper bag, sweating, shaking, reeling from seeing his own image in Gatsby’s mirror while the curtains continue to blow gently in and out around the revolver blasts and Gatsby dies.  Here’s a few shots of our little curtains, images dwarfed by those in the film but enough to take me back through that whole wonderfully constructed scene.

         Screenplay F F Coppola. Why am I not surprised.

Great film, great book.

This I believe. The squares marked A and B are the same shade of grey.

Thanks to: http://butisit.deviantart.com/#/d4cs46b

No I don’t. Yes I do. No I don’t. Yes I do. Anyway, Beth having written this: I love talking to my Dad about anarcho-syndicalism, socialism, communism, capitalism, feminism, religion, anarchy, protest, work, profit, everything. He knows so much, explains how the world works so clearly, and usually has an answer/explanation for everything… on Twitter has prompted someone to guess (in a kindly way, I’m sure) that I might be a Deconstructionist and helpfully to provide a link to an article purporting to explain what that means together with a ‘critique’ of some other approaches to sociology, philosophy and politics that he labels as leftist. It is indeed an interesting article but I ain’t one of them – deconstructionist, that is. Can’t think what kind of an -ist I am really. There’s probably an -ist label for that disability though!

The twitter-guesser then moved on to wonder if I was actually a social constructionist then? after Beth ventured to suggest that Marxist, i.e. materialist would do for the moment. Turns out the guesser ( who seems determined (desperate?) to attach -ists here and there ) is a Christian Socialist and practising Catholic and the article writer, Robert Locke, admired by the twitter-guesser, has also suggested that if all Palestinians were forcibly “removed” from all of Israel, that would help to solve the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.  After the initial discomfort of wondering what I was being described as and not liking Locke’s style too much, I can feel a sense of comfort returning.

England are playing cricket against the West Indies and are described as being in a strong position on the first day because their opponents have scored 243 runs while losing 9 batsmen. England have yet to bat and so languish at 0 for 0. How can that be a strong position yet? If you are reading this and don’t understand cricket, forget it, it’s not a matter of life or death, it’s much more important than that, as Bill Shankly once described soccer.

Bill Shankly. http://www.lfchistory.net/Articles/Article/2410

If you don’t know what soccer is, never mind.

Feeling a bit stir crazy yesterday so went off to Hem Heath Woods, part of the Staffordshire Wildlife Trust’s complement of reserves.

Leaving behind the infernal race of modern life in the car park on Trentham Road, between a railway track and an electricity sub-station, I took the leaf-covered path, all orange, brown, yellow and black. To the left, or East, is an industrial estate, just discernible through the undergrowth, but audible with hums and rattles from time to time but soon left behind.

Two discreet information boards helped to nurture the growing sense of history such, sometimes ancient, places evoke after a few minutes walking. For example Wedgwoods and all their doings are involved, as the Reserve is leased from the Wedgwood “estate”.  I wish that I could have not noticed the rogue apostrophe or ‘Crewe Comma’ on one board though, where whose had become who’s.  Too much proofreading over the years for that to slip through, unfortunately.

Anyway, the path between the trees suddenly reached a beautiful place aptly called The Glade, just occupying its time there, getting on with being naturally attractive to any human eye that cared to visit.  So far the only others enjoying the woods had been a couple ‘walking’ a very energetic, bouncy and obviously happy dog. Then further on into deeper darker parts was a woman on her own apart from her small dog. She had walked these woods for 45 years but had come in from the southern end and had never been up as far as where I explained my car was, all of half a mile or so. We parted after a short chat, as it was getting late into the afternoon and we both needed to find our ways out in the twilight.

Such an experience of peace clears the mind and spirit. That’s what it felt like.

[photos from the website]

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