Sunday, 29 April 2012

Hard place to port . . .

. . . and a rock with teeth to starboard.

Sunday, 22 April 2012

The Right to Know

This recording by John Dog is from a couple of years back, before the revelations which led to the Leveson Inquiry. The illustrations come from two Ladybird books, The Story of Newspapers and The Story of Printing, numbers 14 and 15 in the Ladybird ‘Achievements’ Series 601.

Here’s a YouTube playlist for John Dog

The Right to Know, written and arranged by Raymond Butler and performed by John Dog. © All rights reserved.
The Story of Newspapers copyright © Wills & Hepworth Ltd. 1969.
The Story of Printing copyright © Ladybird Books Ltd. 1970.

Friday, 20 April 2012

Trees in the Topkapı Palace

Enda and Per are just back from Istanbul, where they saw these lovely trees, flatter than the ones they found in New York. (And flatter, of course, is hipper.)

Wednesday, 18 April 2012

Moonlight Swim

Finland in ’59, and Tuula Siponius sings Kuutamouintia. The Elvis version in Blue Hawaii (1961) is not as good; it doesn’t have a duck and is filmed in sunlight. Below, more music from the long dark Finnish winter of 1959.

Seija Karpiomaa, Vanha Mustalainen, (The Old Gypsy).

Anna-Liisa Pyykkö & Ingmar Englund, Kaikki alkoi sinun kanssasi, (It all started with you).

Vieno Kekkonen, Tuliharja, (Brush Fire).

Tuesday, 17 April 2012


A small photograph, two inches wide, found between pages 258 and 259 of The Poetical and Prose Works of Oliver Goldsmith. With Life. Gall & Inglis, Edinburgh and London, no date given. I think the book belonged to my mother, or to my grandmother, but that’s not her in the picture.

A little bit from the Life:
Oliver received his first lessons from Mrs Dolap, who often afterwards, and with almost her last breath in 1787, when about ninety years of age, boasted that she had been the first to put a book into Oliver Goldsmith’s hands.

Sunday, 15 April 2012

A camel came to Italy

From a wall in Venice, snapped by Bo.

Tuesday, 3 April 2012

Ferdinand Magellan auf seinem Schiff

I will be travelling for the next few days, conducting researches in an ancient port of a foreign land. I apologise in advance for any delay in responding to messages.

The above engraving, Ferdinand Magellan on his ship, is to be found in the Virtuelles Kupferstichkabinett, a rich resource I came across via Aeron Alfrey’s Monster Brains blog.