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

Thursday, 25 November 2010

A cold-weather pot-pourri

PROFESSIONALISM Members of Mrs BB’s painting group are concerned about her eye op. One is visiting us this morning “elevenish” and as I left to pick up the paper Mrs BB had started making little cakes. Such casualness

CLICHÉ STUFF The forecasts were gloomy last night: hard frost. It was mild and sunny when I set off for the paper, cold and windy when I returned. The walk lasts six minutes.

BABBLE Deafness. The problem is distinguishing what people are saying against a noisy background. The supermarket check-out for instance.

VALUE Currently the best quality bargains in French wine (ie, in the £8 - £12 bracket) are Coteaux du Languedoc AC. Of those look for villages with their own AC, especially Montpeyroux. Also Faugères and Picpoul de Pinet.

HORRIBLE The first motorbike I owned was a 125 cc BSA Bantam (see pic). Wretched. Note lack of rear suspension and pillion seat - but then it further lacked the power to tote two people.

DQ I’m 48 pages from finishing the 760-page Don Quixote. Would I recommend it? Yes, and for the same reasons I would recommend that every male youth in the UK does military National Service. Now I’ve done mine.

BROS K Plutarch suggested I read The Brothers Karamazov so I’ve bought a second-hand copy via ABE Books. It’s 985 pages. In the past I’ve made three attempts, the most recent failing at page 150.

LONG WAIT I am replacing my car with another of the same make and model. The waiting list was initially three months. Now it’s twenty-two weeks. Various reasons for the delay are offered: rarity of DSG automatic gearboxes and (the much more likely) rarity of RHD.


Hattie said...

I think you have to be young to read the Brothers K, because it asks you to believe so many things that life experience tells you aren't true.

Barrett Bonden said...

Hattie: When I was young I was far more cynical than I am now. In fact a thick core of cynicism, plus an unfailing and impolite form of curiosity were the only qualifications I brought to a working life in journalism. Now I'm an aged fuddy-duddy, ripe for any of Fyodor's extreme suggestions. But it's the length rather than the contents that may discourage me.

Avus said...

I agree. I am not deaf, it's just all the "surround sound" that makes focussing hard. However, I guess a lifetime's motorcycling has not helped the hearing (wind noise). Especially as ear plugs did not become de rigeur until the late '70's. Which brings me neatly to:
My first bike was a BSA Bantam, too. I guess that many of us started our riding on them in the '50s. However, mine was the "swish" 150 model with rear springing and a dual seat. It was no better or worse than the other offerings at the time. The cynical, self-satisfied British motorcycle industry deservedly disintegrated when the meticulous Japanese machines began to be imported - serve them right, too.
I never managed to finish Don Quixote, but did finish my 3 years in the army (twice the pay of a National Service 2 year enlistment). I agree with your recommendation, but why for the same reason as reading DQ?

Barrett Bonden said...

Avus: Re. "Horrible" judgement. This involves two viewpoints: horrible in retrospect, thereby driving out any tendency towards nostalgia, and inferior to most of the contemporary Villiers-engine bikes such as Francis-Barnett and James.

DQ and Nat Serv recommendation. Let me put it another way: in both cases I suffered, as a result I'm recommending that other people should suffer with me.