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past and present


What’s of deep interest to us as writers is not necessarily what the reader wants to be reading.  Such is the case of the strange story of Dorothy Kilgallen.

Who, you might ask?

The interest in her story hovers around the anomalies, the different accounts of the same incidents, the strange failings and weird arrangements made by the authorities.

On the surface, she was just another panel show member, respected for her ability to ferret, cajole, find out and what she wrote was usually accepted as fact, but she wasn’t a person one warmed to, though some pretended to.

In this clip – she’s the one on the left – watch the panel moderator near the end when she protests:

A film out of the past

Annex - Greer, Jane (Out of the Past)_02

Don’t know which was better- the film or Roger Ebert at his best.

A review needs have generous dollops of plot but also needs to touch on all the nuances and how well they work but with a deft touch.  The reviewer’s own quirk – noticing all the smoking and speaking with Mitchum about it – those things lift the review as well.

How the two males viewed it as one theme but the woman would see it differently.…

Molly Meldrum and others

The Prince of Wales has seen fit to rocket Molly Meldrum to world attention with a re-run of a Molly interview.

Meldrum was active during the times I was in Australia and frankly, he was a trainwreck. The interview with the Prince was fairly typical for Ian Meldrum though – in fact, much of what he did went pear-shaped.

In Australia, that was endearing but to an international audience, a bit excruciating.…

Vale Len Terry


Len Terry who has died is one of the last of those designers who it could be said laid the foundations for Britain’s continued success in world motor racing, it was in the fifties and sixties the British equivalent of “the great leap forward” as lightweight aerodynamic designs took over from static front engined designs of the major factories.…

The objectification of Her Royal Hotness

There was just the slightest of references at the Wail and that’s enough pretext for this blog:




pippa middletond



Yes, agreed. I for one refuse to objectify her. Let’s look at her book instead, coming up to Hallowe’en: ‘We feasted on creepy edible morsels, Hallowe’en-themed chocolates and spookily named concoctions, which often looked better than they tasted.’

pippa's book

Pippa, Pippa, light of my life, fire of my loins ……

The adventures of Edward Gough Whitlam

There’s a line in this song which sums up Australians: ‘From the land that thinks the whole world’s out to get them.’ LOL.

He died today, the briefly seen colossus who bestrode Australia – beauty, bonza cobber – and those were the days I was down there, in the middle of it. Politically exciting if you were a young chap with a Labour inclination, which I was at the time.

If you want the actual bio, The Age will do for starters. The lengthier version, for students of political history and the history of nations, is in the five vids below – worth a look. I’ll summarize below that:

These were heady times – we went to all the demonstrations in Melbourne, including the restaurant Kerr attended by the Yarra River. The whole nation was up in arms and the mood was ugly. I think the reason I was pushed towards Labour was having had socialist teachers – how on earth do those people get their sincecures?…

Christopher Wren

Still on the sailing theme:

rnc greenwich


which translates from Latin as:[12]

Here in its foundations lies the architect of this church and city, Christopher Wren, who lived beyond ninety years, not for his own profit but for the public good. Reader, if you seek his monument – look around you. Died 25 Feb. 1723, age 91.

His obituary was published in the Post Boy No. 5244 London 2 March 1723:[13]

Sir Christopher Wren who died on Monday last in the 91st year of his age, was the only son of
Dr. Chr. Wren, Dean of Windsor & Wolverhampton, Registar of the Garter, younger brother of Dr. Mathew(sic)
Wren Ld Bp of Ely, a branch of the ancient family of Wrens of Binchester in the Bishoprick [sic] of Durham

Legitimate businessmen, part four


Mummy, Daddy, what does money laundering mean?

Well darling, it can mean many things but the idea is to make money without anyone knowing you have.

But that could mean anything.

Yes darling, the most elaborates schemes have been devised.  Trouble is, what smells of laundering might not actually be laundering, if the government of the land says it’s not.

Oh like those American banks which were bankrupt but the regulator said they weren’t and billions of people’s money was given to them as a present?

Not unlike that. Solvent is a word which means whatever those in charge want it to mean. Like insider trading, market manipulation and market rigging.

Well, can you give an example?

Hmmm.  Well, there is a very nice man called Jesse and he runs a financial website and this is what he recently wrote:

Despite sincere efforts by some, the regulators have managed their public awareness responsibilities somewhat awkwardly to say the least.

Stirling Moss 85 today


I was reminded today of the birthday, his 85th, of Stirling Moss, I was fortunate being of a certain age enough to see Stirling in action whilst still young what I saw left a memory of the greatest driver this country has produced.

If you are someone who wants multiple world championships to back up a claim like that, then I can’t oblige, I make that statement on what I saw what he could do with a car that was so much better than his contemporaries.

No one can claim that XY or Z is the best of all time in any sport as there are to many variables to consider, but I never saw the equal of Moss, he is the only driver I have ever seen who could take yards out of a rival actually going round a corner, not into it, not on exit but sheer cornering speed in often inferior machinery I have never seen anyone capable of that on that scale.…

Is this Cliff Richard?

I don’t believe a word of this scurrilous set of allegations, with no documentation offered as proof beyond quick, blurred, far-off shots, below and a naff musical track blasting over it:

No, this is the Cliff we all know, remember and love:

Let’s remember Jimmy and Cliff for all the good they did – after all, the Young Ones would have been nothing without Cliff.…