In this blogposting…
* Ambiguity and Idiosyncrasy
* Snowflakes
* Le blog à Pépère
If you have tears to shed….


We haven’t seen Vivienne for a while so it was good to get an email from her the other day.  It included a list of some English language ‘ambiguities and idiosyncrasies’, of which these are a few…

* Atheism is a non-prophet organisation..
* If man evolved from monkeys and apes, why do we still have monkeys and apes?
* I went to a bookshop and asked a salesperson where the ‘self-help’ section was.  He said it would defeat the purpose if he told me…
* What if there were no hypothetical questions?
* Is there another word for 'synonym'?
* Would a fly with no wings be called a ‘walk’?
* How do they get wild animals to cross motorways only at places where they put those signs up?
* What was the best thing before sliced bread?
* How is it possible to have a ‘civil war’?
* If you try to fail and succeed, have you failed or succeeded?
* Does an atheist need insurance against acts of God?

Thanks Vivienne!  Hope we see you soon…

Speaking of which….


Our next AGM will take place at 1100 on Thursday 28 February at (or near) Grey’s Monument in Newcastle - more specifically, at the coffee tables outside Thornton’s at the top of Grainger Street.

If it doesn’t ‘turn out nice again’, we’ll withdraw inside Grainger Market.

The ‘default’ day for AGMs seems to have become Thursday, as if that’s what nature intended.  I’m aware, though, that many people have the great misfortune to have to work for a living and that Thursdays middays are not the most thoughtfully convenient timings for them to get to an AGM.

There’s no reason at all, though, why they shouldn’t take place at weekends or in the early evening - as some of them have, in the past.

If this is an issue for you, please get in touch.

And don’t hesitate to contact me or Hildie if you have any suggestions for interesting new venues.  Dave has already suggested one in Westerhope - and I expect we’ll soon be mustered at Birkheads Nursery again soon, as we are every Spring.

In the meantime - see you at 1100 on the last day of February…


Hildie and I met up with Dave Shannon the other day and, while we chatted, Hildie pointed out to us that we are all almost exactly the same age - to within just a few days.  Weird or what!

And, as Dave pointed out, this means that we have a lot of radio and record memories in common.  With the help of Dave’s prodigious memory, which is much more efficient than mine, we were able to recall…

Stan Freberg.  Do you remember The Yellow Rose of Texas?  Or how about Little Blue Riding Hood?

Alan Sherman.  ‘Hello muddah, hello fadduh - here I am in - Camp Grenada…’

Bob Newhart.  Who could ever forget the letter Sir Walter Raleigh wrote to the Queen about his discovery of tobacco?  ‘They roll it into a tube!  They set fire to it!  And then - they put it in their mouths!!!!’

To me, these were radio voices, scattered across Two-Way Family Favourites at Sunday lunchtimes.  But we remembered the awesome tv presence of Victor Borge, too - specially his masterpiece:  Phonetic Punctuation.  If you don’t know what I’m talking about, you haven’t lived!

On my way home, grainy black-and-white images came flooding back from my past - from my Nana’s sepia-screened Alba, sitting proudly in the alcove of her colliery house in Blackhall, or our Ekco at home in Peterlee, which had a ‘close-down dot’ that never seemed to disappear.

And I was watching Tony Hancock, Tommy Cooper, Stanley Baxter....


Dave’s memory really is a lot better than mine.  He can remember me reading a poem called Snowflakes during a Nightshift programme; he says his heart skipped a beat when he heard it.

And earlier today, I got this email from him.


Whenever a snowflake leaves the sky,
It turns and turns to say Good-bye!
Good-bye dear clouds, so cool, and gray!
Then lightly travels on its way.

And when a snowflake finds a tree,
Good Day! it says, Good Day to thee!
Thou art so bare and lonely, dear,
I'll rest and call my comrades here.

But when a snowflake, brave and meek,
Lights on a rosy maiden’s cheek
It starts - How warm and soft the day!
T’is Summer! - and it melts away.

Isn’t that just lovely?

It was written by Mary Mapes Dodge (1831-1905), whose portrait adorns this blogposting.  Here are a couple of other charming quotes, firstly about April…

Now the noisy winds are still;
April's coming up the hill!
All the spring is in her train,
Led by shining ranks of rain;
Pit, pat, patter, clatter,
Sudden sun and clatter patter! . . . .
All things ready with a will, 

April's coming up the hill!

I love that ‘shining ranks of rain’.

And here’s something Mary wrote about the way rain must ‘think’…

She waits for me, my lady Earth,
Smiles and waits and sighs;
I'll say her nay, and hide away,
Then take her by surprise!

Thanks for the memories, reminders and thoughts, Dave.


Serge’s blogposting 181 contains some splendid quotes about Love.  For those whose French is as ropey as mine, they roughly translate as…

Love someone who loves you and not just one that attracts you.

Love is not just two people gazing at each other; it is also two people looking in the same direction.

Love is easy; the hardest part is to be loved by the one you love.


Post comments on this blog or email me:  truckshunters@googlemail.com


Mietek Padowicz said...

See you all at the AGM.

Vivienne said...

Oh dear, I'm working next Thursday, so I'm sorry I can't attend the next AGM. I'm back working at Cherryburn again. It was my first day back today for the new season. So sorry to be missing you all.

Many thanks Hildie for your lovely card.It will be a strange day tomorrow as it's my aunt's funeral. She would have been 89yrs tomorrow.

Hope to catch up with you all soon.

Lots of love,
Vivienne xxx