276In this blogposting…
*Things You Didn’t Know You Didn’t Know
*You Can’t Take It With You
*My Pear Tree Has Gone Bananas
Proceed with caution - but not too much caution…
THINGS YOU DIDN’T KNOW YOU DIDN’T KNOW
* Sales of knitting wool have gone up by 40% since the recession began
* Last year, a million people registered to become organ donors
* The number of children with access to the internet in their bedrooms has more than doubled in the last two years
* Elvis Presley earned £55m last year, despite still being dead (see below)
* Salmon have returned to the Seine
* There are only 33 native sperm donors in Canada
* You can now buy DIY DNA testing kits from the chemist
YOU CAN’T TAKE IT WITH YOU
According to Forbes Magazine, this is a list of the highest-earning dead celebrities:
1 - Yves Saint Laurent ($350m)
2 - Rodgers and Hammerstein ($235m)
3 - Michael Jackson ($90m)
4 - Elvis Presley (see above)
5 - J R R Tolkien ($50m)
6 - Charles Schulz (‘Peanuts’) ($35m)
7 - John Lennon ($15m)
7 - Dr Seuss ($15m)
9 - Albert Einstein ($10m)
10 - Michael Crichton ($9m)
MY PEAR TREE HAS GONE BANANAS
Some years ago, in the early days of the Blue Bus programme, a listener called Harriet French, from Tweedmouth, sent me an unforgettable little book called My Pear Tree Has Gone Bananas.
It consists entirely of the garbled sayings, mangled metaphors and punch-drunk proverbs which tripped and crashed out of the mouth of a man called Don Edwards. Don was an otherwise fairly unremarkable graphic designer - but his affectionate colleagues kept a record of his colourful use of language. In due course, it was published in aid of the Multiple Sclerosis Society.
Ever since Harriet was generous enough to send it to me at the BBC, it has remained by my bed - just in case I need something to laugh at before I put the light out.
Here are a few tasters...
* He’s as deaf as a dodo
* Putting the horse before the cart
* You’re chasing a dead horse!
* You can’t chase a dying cow
* I feel as stiff as a newt
* Let sleeping ducks lie
* I’m caught between the devil and the frying pan
* That’s money for old jam
* Speak of the wind and in it blows
* The world is your lobster
Thankyou, Harriet. Your book has come to my rescue many times. And yes, I did make a donation to the Multiple Sclerosis Society.
1,001 BUILDINGS TO SEE BEFORE YOU DIE
Time once again for the next ten ‘buildings you should see before you die’, as recommended in the lovely book I got for Christmas.
The buildings in the book are in chronological order. This list brings us up to 1265.
If you’ve seen any of them, or plan to, please get in touch. I’m honoured to say that, with numbers 66, 68 and 70, my tally has gone up to eight!
61 - Koutoubia Mosque, Marrakech, Morocco
62 - St George’s Church, Lalibela, Ethiopia
63 - Santiago de Compostela Cathedral, Spain
64 - Chartres Cathedral, France
65 - Castel del Monti, Bari, Italy
66 - Sainte-Chapelle, Paris, France (pictured here)
67 - Djenne Mosque, Timbuktu, Mali (pictured above)
68 - Salisbury Cathedral, England
69 - Cliff Palace, Colorado, USA
70 - Baptistery, Pisa, Italy
National totals so far are:
Italy 13, France 6, Egypt 5, China 4, Ireland 3, India 3, Syria 2, Croatia 2, Iraq 2, Spain 2, England 2 - then 1 each for Afghanistan, Armenia, Cambodia, Ethiopia, Germany, Greece, Guatemala, Indonesia, Iran, Isreal, Japan, Libya, Mali, Mexico, Morocco, Myanmar, Russia, Saudi Arabia, Scotland, South Korea, Tunisia, Turkey, Turkmenistan, USA, Uzbekistan and Vietnam.
Our next AGM will take place at 1100 on Sunday 12 June. If you have any nominations for a venue for this unusual, weekend AGM, please get in touch.
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