Once Works Well was pure technology. Now it seeks merely to divert.
Pansy subjects - Verse! Opera! Domestic trivia! - are now commonplace.
The 300-word limit for posts is retained. The ego is enlarged

Monday, 22 June 2009

Instead of a postcard

Our holiday at the St Jean de la Blaquière villa (36 km west of Montpellier) was fraught with techno:
A PEN? Normally I cobble together poetry on the computer, something real poets disapprove of. Lacking electronics at SJDLB I resorted to pen and paper which means I have a complete record of a fortnight’s second thoughts. I now intend to live to 152, sell my MSs to a Texan university and live off the proceeds.
IT’S NOT ROCKET SCIENCE. OH YES, IT IS. The villa lav had one of those double-button flushers, one for short-term and one for… er, longer visits. Except the cistern valve wouldn’t close and the previous occupants (a rather destructive group of bikers) had turned off the water supply. Simple, I thought, as I lifted the cistern lid. To reveal a sprung cable, a two-stage cam, lots of concentric tubes and an inter-relationship I wot not of. A prayer to the Oc god, Technos, was answered positively.
NEVER TOO YOUNG. BB: “I’m just going out to check the car’s oil.” BB fille cadette: “That doesn’t interest me but there is someone who would be interested.” And so three-year-old Zach watched silently, eyes wide, as the dipstick was extracted, wiped, re-dipped and examined. Believe me, he’s way beyond fluffy toys.

LA VIE EN ROSE Huge quantities of rosé were drunk, mainly from wine boxes – Hey! We were quaffing not tasting and spitting. The economics of a 10-litre (vs. our normal 5-litre) box appeared tempting until younger daughter pointed out a significant disadvantage: it wouldn’t fit into the fridge. She’s her father’s child.


The Crow said...

Welcome home, BB and family. From your post, it sounds as if you had an interesting time.

Looking forward to reading your poetry from your sojourn.


Plutarch said...

"A double button flusher" demands to be incorporated into a tongue- twister if it has not already found its place in a sonnet.

marja-leena said...

Yes, great to see you back! Lots of material for future posts hinted at here. Any chance of photos and posts about that charming part of France you stayed at, or is that not techno enough for your blog?

Sir Hugh said...

I have friends who have a double flusher. both the buttons are exactly the same with no indication of which is for long or short: it seems the objective has been defeated. What often puzzles me about such things is how can highly paid, double degree design engineers miss such basic points of design?

Julia said...

So glad to see you back!! Looking forward to hearing more.

Relucent Reader said...

Welcome back, missed your poetry and prose.
The 2 buttons would supply endless (until the water runs out) entertainment for Young Master and Miss on our summer vacation. Brave soul you are to gaze into the entrails of the system.
Nice to hear Zach is taking an interest in mechanical things, even in their quiescent state. Remind him when he gets older, motor off to check oil. Please see my reply to your comment on my last post for a take on summer drinks.

Barrett Bonden said...

Despite SJDLB's seductive charms I feel as if I'm back in front of an open fire, cracking nuts and listening to "Family Favourites".

The Crow: Transferring the two poems I struggled with (one still lacking a last line) from my French exercise book to the hard disc revealed hidden defects. A mind fuzzed up with excessive rosé. See you after de-tox.

Plutarch: Yes, it has that ring. I should have photographed the mechanism - a real brain twister.

M-L: I'm basically a wordsman and in our cosy little fireside circle (see above) I'm outgunned by the real lenspersons. I do have one or two pix; I'll see if I dare.

Sir Hugh: The mechanism reminded me of that aphorism about German car designers: if there's a choice between something simple and something complicated... well, I'm sure you can fill in the rest.

Julia: Nice to be back. While we were sweltering my wife and daughter were discussing their next Christmas market visit. It looks like it will be Prague this year. My only contribution is to book the restaurant for them. What's the most sooper-dooper, the most eye-wateringly expensive place with the bestest wine list?

RR: Saw yours, now see mine.