Archive for the ‘politics’ Category

Swindon and Strood By-Election Scandal   Leave a comment

Emily Thornberry, MP, the Labour Party Shadow Attorney General was forced to resign the Front Benches today for tweeting this picture of a lorry stuck under a low bridge draped with St George flags and the caption, “Typical Swindon, eh?”

Swindon by-elections


DT #062, 3 Mar 2014 (La Vieille Ferme)   1 comment

La Vieille Ferme

Eighties artifacts.
Tidying turns up items
You forgot about.

Name: La Vieille Ferme
Type: red wine
Recipe: Leftover chicken, ground cumin, paprika, ground coriander seed, and a can of tomatoes heated through.  Add leftover rice (couldn’t find a can opener for the beans), some green/spring onions and chopped cilantro/coriander.  Warm some tortillas and add cheese then fill.  Feast.
Venue: house

Review/notes: A rather standard red for burrito night.  We’re still living in clutter but can see daylight.

I had buttons like this in the early 1980s, but this was one of Jackie’s (picked up in a shop in Athens, GA June 6, 2004 a few hours after we heard the obit on NPR).  I married well.

ronald reagan rots in hell close

[DT =Daily Tipple, explained in DT #000 here]

Monthly consolidations/compilations: January

Kensal Green Cemetery, London   4 comments

Oh. My. Dear. Lord.  What a great park!  And, so full of good architecture and points of historic reflection you feel it is a pity that it is so sacred a place…I get the same feeling in good churches, but I really love a decent cemetery and Kensal Green is one of the best I have ever seen, filled with more of the great and good than you could hope to find in a single visit. Here was our little tour from Thursday (the first here, but certainly not the last).

We entered and got a quick guide to some of the interesting sites, but it took a minute or two to orient ourselves; Jackie really wants to be dragged off to immortality in one of these horse hearses so I took a quick shot of it:

kensal green 02 hearse 2

Near our entrance we examined a few interesting decorations like the one for the “Special Lady” and another for the Queens Park Rangers fan (the blue and white is the jersey of the local football club).

kensal green 03 qpr shirt  kensal green 05 special lady

Also nearby, we found the Rattigan family plot under which, unmarked, you will find the ashes of Terence (I do love the boy’s plays).

kensal green 04 rattigan

I learned most from the pamphlet we bought from the Friends of the Kensal Green Cemetery the founder of which was an Honours Doctor of Arts (which I had to look up thinking he was a Dutch veterinarian or ‘hondarts’). He might well have designed the clever coat of arms, though.

kensal green 06 jws litten detail  kensal green 07 jws litten

The statuary is unusually intact in this garden and the first decapitated monument was for George Solon Ladd that, it turns out, was a pioneer of radio communications.

kensal green 08 george solon ladd radio man

The next one was an unusual little altar for Elisabetta Lamertini, the only Google search of which I could find was a woman working on a civil engineering PhD (which could be used to design a repair plan for her namesake’s monument).

kensal green 09 elisabetta lambertini

Before heading on to the great and good, here are some of the other cool monuments we found around the grounds. Elizabeth Prince had a nice azure glass and white marble plot, while Thea Altieri got a fantastic metal statue of the Spirit of Ecstasy. There was some nice glass on the Caxton stone, and several of the Caribbean spots were crowded with family artefacts.

Prince's blue and white

Prince’s blue and white

Spirit of Ecstacy

Spirit of Ecstasy



kensal green 51 busy grave

Close family

We headed toward the dissenter’s section (unlike Bunhill which is small and all for dissenters — but still marvelous and yet only mentioned obliquely in these pages — Kensal Green has a separate section for non C of E residents) and along the way spotted Jean Francois Blondin, a tight rope walker famous for crossing Niagra.

kensal green 13 jean francois blondin

There was also the great monument, left by the celebrity chef Alexis Soyer to his wife Emma with the inscription “To Her.” Awesome stuff. We found this while unsuccessfully searching for Wilkie Collins, a much less magnificent stone.

kensal green 17 to her

Another we found, on purpose, was Dr. James Miranda Barry. Hard to read, the stone marks one of the most singularly interesting characters of the 19th century…a doctor from modest means who was the first to perform a modern Caesarian section, served in every major military venue contemporary with their achievements, fought several duels over their carriage, became Inspector General of surgical hospitals, fought with Florence Nightingale, oh, right, AND was discovered to actually be a woman after his/her death.

kensal green 18 dr james (miranda) barry 2  kensal green 19 dr james (miranda) barry 1

We found an interesting rock over John Hobhouse who was Lord Byron’s friend and Best Man and who travelled with him. Hobhouse later founded the Royal Geographic Society.

kensal green 20 john cam hobhouse

The Egyptian mausoleum of Andrew Ducrow was a puzzlement. Turns out he was an acrobatic equestrian that presented plays entirely on horseback (hence the hat and gloves at the base).

kensal green 22 andrew ducrow  kensal green 23 andrew ducrow detail  kensal green 24 andrew ducrow 3  kensal green 25 andrew ducrow hat gloves

The metal cross nearby is still a question mark for us:

kensal green 26 metal cross near andrew ducrow

Edmund Molyneux was a nice find as we have spent many happy times in Savannah, Georgia where he was British Consul from 1831 until the middle of the Civil War.

Molyneux, our Savannah connection

Molyneux, our Savannah connection

The four angels atop the temple to Mary Gibson deserve a better story; Mary died of kidney disease at 18.

Mary Eleanor Gibson

Mary Eleanor Gibson

William Mulready has a spectacular monument with incredible detail in his death sculpture and nice little incised bits of his artwork (he was a book illustrator and painter).

kensal green 33 william mulready 3

kensal green 32 william mulready 2

kensal green 31 william mulready 1

William Casement’s little temple is supported by the bodies of those he ruled in life as the Governor-General of India. He is actually buried in Calcutta, so this is an especially arrogant installation.

kensal green 36 william casement

The Brunel Family plot was anticipated to be ostentatious, massive, and perhaps gaudy as they had been responsible for so many massive and important engineering projects–many still in use today. Their simple stone was like an after dinner mint cleansing the funereal palate.

kensal green 38 brunel

Nearby, though, Commander Ricketts ornately detailed box is fairly eye-catching. Rickets went to sea as a boy and served under Nelson and later married into money and became High Sheriff of Buckinghamshire.

kensal green 37 charles spnecer ricketts

We knew Thackery was nearby but the stones were too weathered on top to make out the names or dates. On the end of this one, though, we saw the distinctive monogram of William Makepeace Thackery still intact.

William Makepeace Thackery's rock

William Makepeace Thackery’s rock

kensal green 39 william makepeace thackery detail

The name Percy Smythe rang a bell (but not George Augustus Frederick Percy Sydney Smythe, nor did 7th Viscount Strangford). Looking him up later we found him to be a novelist and friend of Disraeli. He was also a mouthy git which led him to fight many duels, including the last one in England.

Viscount Strangford

Viscount Strangford

Feargus O’Connor has an interesting hexagonal spire for his headstone. He was a social reformer and muckraker who drew 50,000 to his funeral.

kensal green 43 feargus o'connor

It is probably best to end this little trip with something simple but quite moving in its own way. Boots Davidson was credited as the guy that brought steel drum music to England and taught music and founded important bands in the genre for decades thereafter. Here are his markers…simple, austere, and they actually stand out in stark contrast the thousands of tons of marble nearby.

kensal green 44 boots davidson cross

Philmore “Boots” Davidson, cross

kensal green 45 boots davidson marker

and marker

New GOP Slogan?   Leave a comment

Been away so long I hardly know the place…looking through a news consolidation site I spotted an article teaser that made me wonder if the Republicans are just trying to appeal to their base:

gop slogan


(I added the bit about the roots. Sorry for any confusion.)

Posted 2013/06/04 by Drunken Bunny in commentary, politics, USA

Tagged with , ,

Hashlam in Society by Slowsama-bin-Riden   31 comments


The treatise before you seeks to introduce the uninformed world to Hashlam, the faith of Hashers worldwide, and to dispel the myths and innuendo that have developed due to prejudices brought on, too often, from the practice of its rites in view of the general public, insh’Gispert (G-willing).  The religious aspects are regularly covered on individual hashing sites and on Wikipedia; this entry will try to deal with some of the societal implications.

Most of the misinformation comes from the ambiguity and subtlety between the various forms of practice of Hashlam. Many of you will have heard of the two major sects, the Shites and the Sotties, with the Shites adherents of the PreLay (paths to the True Trail that exist before the journey is taken) while the Sotties believe in Live trails (often a misnomer) that must be discerned from freshly given divine clues.  Subtleties in belief and practice all too often result in G-Had as in the one called by a hasher known as Ibn-Love FatWa of the fundamentalist Sottie group known as the Arizona Larrikins (aka, Mr Happy’s) against a less well established Sottie sect known as Bike Hashlam (whose cultish offshoot, the Cycletologists, boasts many celebrity members) culminating in the flour fueled carpet bombing of the Bike Hash’s first Red Dress Run (this rite is described on most Hashing websites and will not be explored here).

Results of the Bike Hash G-Had

Results of the Bike Hash G-Had

It may come as a surprise to many of you that Hashlam has its antecedents in the other two great Western religions, ie, Brewdaism and Trackstianity (which itself developed from the Brewdaic tradition via a more fundamentalist form of the Beer Run). In fact, the path to Hashlam, known as the True Trail, very often involves dabbling in one or both of the older faiths with even observant members of Orthodox Brewdaism taking up running and very sober members of Trackstian sects finding solace in a Brewish Temple.

It is written and widely believed that, having taken up the Way of the True Trail, it is impossible for one to leave. Liberal adherents believe the prescribed death of an ex-Hasher is meant to be figurative, but support groups such as Apostacy Alcoholics, or AA, have taken on many a wayward Hasher and are considered heretical organisations even by the most broad-minded believers. There may even be time to explore the Seven-ish Pillars of Hashlam, most famous of which being the Interhaaj in which every hasher of nearly the financial means is expected to go make an ass of himself in a foreign land.

In future postings, we hope to shed light on how Hashlam has integrated with Eastern religions such as the Budhists (of both the Budweiser and Budvar varieties) and the exotic Tindu pantheon of tinned (and bottled!) beverages.


The Centre for Hashlamic Studies was founded in 2013 by Slowsama-bin-Riden with the mission to examine and explain Hashlam’s place in out increasingly interdependent world. Slowsama can be contacted by the faithful via Hashspace and by the rest of you infidel dogs at .

Gispert aleichem…aleichem,on-on.

Thatcher Obituary (“Oh, Bitch…You’re Airy)   Leave a comment

File photo of British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher pointing skyward as she receives standing ovation at Conservative Party Conference

I was having lunch when the first Thatcher joke hit my Twitter account and I thought I might do an obit detailing some weird Thatcher-related, fetishistic fantasy from my youth but I just couldn’t work up any enthusiasm for it (at least not the kind of enthusiasm the Brits, pro and con, seem capable of in their widely varied tributes).  I already did Betty this honour, anyway.

After all, I lived through Reagan and have listened for years to nonsense about him ending the Cold War, making America great again, saving capitalism, etc, etc.  Yet even though I have less direct experience than the locals do, my feelings for the Blue Lady are similarly visceral to those I have for Ronnie.  Lord Byron, felt much the same about Castlereagh…so, I might do no better than to paraphrase the one’s tribute to the other, here:

‘The end result we finally see
Of Mammon over me and you.
Here sits the urn of Mrs. T:
Squat, brothers, and poo.’




Okay, for you Philistines out there who keep asking…Byron penned this out of his great respect for the late Castlereagh and all he did for the Irish:

‘Posterity will ne’er survey,
A nobler grave than this:
Here lie the bones of Castlereagh:
Stop, traveller, and piss.’ — Lord Byron

The News of the Week Ending 10 March 2013   Leave a comment

There was little exercise and fuck-all going out for anything aside from bare necessities this week as fever, aches, and blinding congestive pressure took hold.  To have something new for the blog this week, I did what I always do when ill…I scanned the news.  Here are some highlights from the week.

Dogs And Owners Gather For 2013 Crufts Dog Show

The Crufts Dog Show started this week and will continue for much of the next 8 months.  I used to think that the BBC should dedicate a channel exclusively to darts, snooker, and Crufts but a friend pointed out that they already have one called BBC 2.  It is interesting to see the odd breeds that have developed over the years, though.

Venezuela Election

Rest in peace, brother Chavez.

Once, me and Hugo were out drinking and, boy, could he put it away!  I overdid it and puked all over myself, covering my shirt in filth.  “What am I going to tell Jackie?  She hates when I embarrass myself in front of heads-of-state.”

Thinking quickly, Hugo stuffed a 20 peso note in my shirt pocket: “tell her a guy at the bar did this and gave you the note to pay for the cleaning.”

I got back to the hacienda and she hit the roof and I told her Hugo’s story at which point she calmed right down–Hugo was a genius of crisis control.

Then, Jackie said, “hey, Bun…why are there TWO twenties in your shirt?”

“Oh, that other one is from the guy that shit in my pants.”

NK boy band

North Korea severed musical relations with Seoul during the week.  Here we see evidence of Pyongyang’s development of prohibited Boy Band Technology.  Worrying though this may be, few experts believe that this is Da Bomb.

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