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 The Tumbleweed Suite

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PostSubject: Re: The Tumbleweed Suite   Thu 19 Oct 2017, 15:59

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LadyinRetirement
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PostSubject: Re: The Tumbleweed Suite   Fri 20 Oct 2017, 11:21

A bit of satire, including political satire, can be healthy I think. I enjoyed "That Was the Week that Was" and "The Frost Report" way back when - before David Frost became all serious and cutting edge.* On the radio back in the 1980s I liked Radio 4's "Week Ending". "Splitting Image" was (to me at least) patchy; good in parts, so-so in others. (I may have been put off by the smug self-congratulatory way people connected with the show acted at award ceremonies; I tend to avoid TV shows of award ceremonies nowadays). Tracey Ullman is good at what she does but I guess her show is really more impression than cutting-edge satire. I must confess I haven't watched "The Thick of It" or "Veep" though I can remember Armando Iannuci from a radio programme in the '90s, "Today's The Day" which featured Steve Coogan as his Alan Partridge character which later became more well known. I had a quick look on Wikepedia and read that AI is working on a version of "David Copperfield" - I expect that will be a less potentially contentious project than anything concerned with Stalin (though do we need yet another adaptation of "David Copperfield" - unless it is a DC send-up; I am assuming IA is working on something to do with the Dickens (Dickens' ?) novel and not the magician - or the former co-star of Tracey Ullman on "Three of a Kind").

* Not saying that we don't need cutting-edge and serious sometimes. I think in the UK we could do with an anchorman (or anchorwoman) with the gravitas of the late Walter Cronkite. Jon Snow (as in Channel 4, not as in a popular fantasy show) is probably the nearest (in my opinion) that we have. Paxman it ain't and I don't think Andrew Marr quite fills the breach (though I warmed to him a little when I heard a story that when he was out and about somewhere, might have been the supermarket, and somebody said something like (paraphrasing because I'm going from memory) "Yer look like that bloke off the telly, yer poor b*gger". Of course that may turn out to be yet another urban legend.
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PostSubject: Re: The Tumbleweed Suite   Fri 20 Oct 2017, 19:21

What with all the political turmoil over the border in Catalunya I'm all alone this weekend. I did have two couples from Barcelona booked - but they've just cancelled. However it's nearly the end of the season anyway.

Actually it's probably just as well I've no one coming: I've been making jam all afternoon so there are pots cooling down all over the dining room, as well as a certain residual stickness everywhere: on the floor, on door handles, even on the dog. I also went looking for mushrooms this morning ...



... and so alongside 26 pots of quince jelly, 15 jars of apricot jam, and 10 pots of apple and rosehip jelly, there are now several racks of drying mushrooms too.

Yesterday, the third Thursday of October, was the traditional launch of the 'vins primeurs' - the first of the new season's wines (the local ones are always a few weeks earlier than the better known Beaujolais Nouveau ones). The local shops have all got them on display but I'm not a great fan of new wines .... however if you fancy a glass, help yourselves. The usual accompaniement to sampling the new wines is a castanyada - a chestnut roast - but after my success foraging in the woods this morning my supper's going to be a nice omelette aux ceps. And that's all for me.
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PostSubject: Re: The Tumbleweed Suite   Fri 20 Oct 2017, 20:31

Lady in retirement,

"Paxman it "

You were speaking on this "suite" about Paxman and I continuously was thinking about a link between him and Philippe Pétain on a French forum and they weren't that nice to him, especially among "Pétainists" (defenders of Pétain after Vichy France WWII). I did research on the subject in the heat of the debate about Pétain.
And I wanted to ask you about the link...
But searching in English about Paxman and Pétain I found nothing...of course I couldn't find anything while returning to my old French forum I found it was Paxton... Embarassed
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Robert_Paxton
"Paxton became the subject of intense vitriol from French historians and commentators. During a televised debate with Paxton in 1976, the Vichy naval leader Gabriel Auphan called him a liar."

Kind regards, Paul.
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PostSubject: Re: The Tumbleweed Suite   Fri 20 Oct 2017, 22:12

Lady in retirement,

about Operation Torch and Vichy naval leader Gabriel Auphan I recall a vitriolic debate between "us" and some Pétainists about a secret telegram sent by Gabriel Auphan from Pétain to Darlan contradicting his official instructions to Darlan.
Its very "specific" history and perhaps interesting for VF, Vizzer, Meles meles..."

But for you it is perhaps interesting that grown up people nearly 70 years after the war could have such "vitriolic" exchanges Wink ...
For the interested ones:
the book from Aron page 400
https://archive.org/stream/in.ernet.dli.2015.59325/2015.59325.The-Vichy-Regime1940-44_djvu.txt

And perhaps from a "Pétainiste"
http://realite-histoire.over-blog.com/article-petain-faisait-il-double-jeu-a-vichy-2-37749432.html


Kind regards from Paul.
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PostSubject: Re: The Tumbleweed Suite   Sat 21 Oct 2017, 23:12

BTW ladies and gentlemen I know that Temperance said she went on holidays, and nordmann said something about a visit to the British Isles, but I don't see Ferval for some time.
FERVAL, WHERE ARE YOU?

Regards from Paul.
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PostSubject: Re: The Tumbleweed Suite   Sun 22 Oct 2017, 10:55

Fear not, Paul, I'm back. How nice to be missed. I have been up a mountain in Axarquia with very dodgy internet connections and a 10 year old who, having broken her own computer, commandeered everyone else's tech when the signal was working or we were anywhere that had decent wifi.
MM, your post above resonates: the Catalan referendum and wild mushrooms have figured prominently over my last week or so. We were in Malaga on the Day of Spanish Heritage, Columbus Day, a public holiday, when the city was crammed but, ironically, the museums I wanted to visit were closed. The restaurants were open though, although queues were vast, and the mushrooms were superb.

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PostSubject: Re: The Tumbleweed Suite   Sun 22 Oct 2017, 12:11

I see we have another member Hatsheput. Welcome, do come and have a drink.
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PostSubject: Re: The Tumbleweed Suite   Sun 22 Oct 2017, 12:48

I think, Ferval, that Hatshepsut is a reincarnation of Binky (that's right isn't it Binks?) ... but a Dr.Who-like regeneration is still a welcome excuse for having a drink.

On a purely personal note the name, Binky, always triggered an odd memory. During the war my mother had several boyfriends before she met my dad, and living near an airbase they were all RAF chaps. One, Binky, from a few photos I found when clearing out mum's affairs after her death, was everso good-looking (a pilot, tall, blond, flashing smile etc.) ... everything my dad (ground crew, short, dark, a Geordie ..) wasn't. Yet as fate turned out Binky served in North Africa while my Dad ended up in France, Belgium and Germany, and as my Dad once said, the Forces' postal service was always better from Europe than from Africa, and so he won the prize! But I do wonder how things would have been if Binky had married my mum and been my "dad".
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PostSubject: Re: The Tumbleweed Suite   Sun 22 Oct 2017, 14:10

Talking of holidays, it is always polite when travelling abroad to make some effort to speak the language, but language and phrase books can be a dodgy introduction to a foreign country. The reader of Teach Yourself Catalan for instance can only wonder in what dire circumstances - even given the present turmoil - a tourist will require the use of the rather mystifying phrase "I am prepared to raffle the goat." I am not making this up, although there is some dispute about one of the verbs in this sentence. Does "estic disposat a sortejar la cabra" actually mean "I am inclined to raffle the goat"  or, as quoted, "I am prepared to raffle the goat"?

The difference could be crucial.

Does anyone know?
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PostSubject: Re: The Tumbleweed Suite   Sun 22 Oct 2017, 14:37

Welcome Hatsheptsut, that's a fine name you have; though when it comes to historical Hatshepsut I probably know more about historical novel Hatshepsut than real Hatshepsut and historical novels do have to be taken with a liberal grain of salt.

Alluding to Temperance's post above, one of the ladies at the U3A Spanish class I go to also attends a Catalan class (mind you they are teaching themselves, not like with the Spanish class with a teacher). IF (and it's a big if) I remember I will ask that lady if she can cast any light on what "estic...cabra" means.

Paxman and Paxton are indeed similar names, PR, but it was Mr Paxman to whom I was referring. He is sometimes referred (not to his face) as Paxo - Paxo being a brand name for stuffing (as in an accompaniment for meat dishes) https://www.britishcornershop.co.uk/paxo-sage-and-onion-stuffing . The Paxo (brand name) website is down so I had to link to another site showing a box of Paxo. That has rather veered away from the topic of Petain.
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PostSubject: Re: The Tumbleweed Suite   Sun 22 Oct 2017, 15:53

@Temperance wrote:
.... The reader of Teach Yourself Catalan for instance can only wonder in what dire circumstances - even given the present turmoil - a tourist will require the use of the rather mystifying phrase "I am prepared to raffle the goat." I am not making this up...

.... and I'm not making this up either but I did once, in the village fete's loto (raffle), win a goat ... or at least half a goat. Presumably it was already dead and cut up into suitable joints. I never actually found out because the practice here is to combine the big prizes together to make 'el gordo' the grand prize. I'd contributed a voucher for 'a weekend break chez moi', and had said that if I personally won it obviously they should put it back into the prize pool. Unfortunately my donated 'bonne de séjour' was included in the top prize, ... and so when I won 'el gordo', they cancelled my entire prize: the goat and my voucher, plus a ham, a whole cheese, a case of wine, a meal at a local restaurant, a cake, a service for the car, and several jars of honey, ... and duly put the whole lot back into the raffle, with me getting nothing at all. I had to both button my lip and bite my tongue when the 'winner' duly turned up some months later for her free weekend-for-two, and told me all about the other great things she'd 'won'.
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PostSubject: Re: The Tumbleweed Suite   Sun 22 Oct 2017, 17:25

Meles - I bet you missed the jars of honey most of all.
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PostSubject: Re: The Tumbleweed Suite   Sun 22 Oct 2017, 18:56

In my alternative personage as a badger you might well be right ... although in fact given the option, badgers generally go for protein rather than simple sweet/sugar/carbohydrates. When badgers raid bee hives, after initially gorging on the immediately available honey (simplement pour la gout) they then tend to concentrate on eating the meaty larvae, rather than the sugary stores.

But the real me .... well, not having a sweet tooth in my entire body, I certainly regretted missing out on the goat-meat most of all. Goat-meat  - and here that almost invariably means the tender young kid - would have been a most delectable delicacy, and otherwise unobtainable unless one has the money. But hey ho, and all that.
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PostSubject: Re: The Tumbleweed Suite   Sun 22 Oct 2017, 19:33

Yes - it was a play on 'meles meles'. I can't say I know anything about honey badgers or even know what the difference is between a honey badger or any other kind of badger (if any). I would guess, however, that the Pyrenees and Catalonia would eminently seem to be the sort of places in the world where honey badgers might be found. Does anyone know what the Catalan word is for a badger?
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PostSubject: Re: The Tumbleweed Suite   Sun 22 Oct 2017, 20:03

In Catalan a badger is un teixo ...  I don't speak Catalan but that's from numerous discussions with guests about all the holes in the lawn - the same sort of discussions that have informed me that the Catalan for a wild boar/pig is a porc-senglar.

Honey-badgers are not true badgers ... they are a related, though separate, genus, that is restricted to sub-Saharan Africa. They do however share the typical 'blairid' (is that a word?), roughty-toughty attitude to everything they encounter, whether that's wild bees, cobras, buffalo or lions. I like honey badgers almost as much as I like European badgers.

Honey badgers are clever too.

"After his severe mauling by the lions, Brian knew he had to get his badger under control ...."

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PostSubject: Re: The Tumbleweed Suite   Wed 25 Oct 2017, 09:58

Welcome to our newest member, ComicMonster.

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PostSubject: Re: The Tumbleweed Suite   Wed 25 Oct 2017, 19:52

Evening folks. Yes, Hatshepsut is the new name - the more regal and elegant name - for that of Binky.

Binky Huckaback was a character in an old radio series in Britain in the 1960s, Round The Horne. Binky was an ageing juvenile and I felt the name appropriate on other boards, but not here. 

Everyone here seems extremely well read, erudite, polite, professionally engaged, alert to news of an historic nature....in short, mature and far from juvenile. So Binky has to get the push, as it were. I am happy to be called Hattie by my friends....


On the subject of foreign languages, I am terribly rusty with my schoolgirl French, and so have joined a local U3A group for conversation. We all take a turn speaking about our activities the previous week. I want to say something about the actor who played Dracula (I went to see a play with my husband) and the only verb I can think of for play is 'jouer' but that is to play a game I think? What is the correct term for playing a role as an actor please?
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PostSubject: Re: The Tumbleweed Suite   Wed 25 Oct 2017, 20:21

@Hatshepsut wrote:
On the subject of foreign languages, I am terribly rusty with my schoolgirl French, and so have joined a local U3A group for conversation. We all take a turn speaking about our activities the previous week. I want to say something about the actor who played Dracula (I went to see a play with my husband) and the only verb I can think of for play is 'jouer' but that is to play a game I think? What is the correct term for playing a role as an actor please?

The verb is the same, jouer, as in, je joue le rôle de Dracula, or in, nous avons joué à Brighton la semaine dernière, or, il va jouer Benvolio en Romeo et Juliette, etc. You could also use interpréter, but as in English that's a little bit different. A play though, as a noun, is une pièce.


Last edited by Meles meles on Wed 25 Oct 2017, 21:09; edited 3 times in total
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PostSubject: Re: The Tumbleweed Suite   Wed 25 Oct 2017, 20:24

Thank you. My own private tutor! I won't tell the others.

Hattie xx
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PostSubject: Re: The Tumbleweed Suite   Wed 25 Oct 2017, 20:31

I just hope I'm right Wink ... I'm not actually French, I just live and work in France.
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PostSubject: Re: The Tumbleweed Suite   Wed 25 Oct 2017, 20:56

@Hatshepsut wrote:

Binky Huckaback was a character in an old radio series in Britain in the 1960s, Round The Horne. Binky was an ageing juvenile and I felt the name appropriate on other boards, but not here. 

I remember Round the Horne, I was quite young but as a family we listened to it at lunchtime on Sunday (I think) ... and I remember Binkie Huckaback too. He (you'd changed sex there too) played against Dame Celia Molestrangler in the Fiona and Charles, 'Brief Encounter' type parodies:

Charles:"Oh Fiona."
Fiona: "Oh Charles."
Charles: "Fiona ... you do know, don't you?"
Fiona: "I know."
Charles: "I know you know."
Fiona: "I know you know I know."
Charles: "Yes, I know."


@Hatshepsut wrote:
Everyone here seems extremely well read, erudite, polite, professionally engaged, alert to news of an historic nature....in short, mature and far from juvenile.

We're not all erudite ... although Normann definitely is ...some of us are just bluffing our way here. And we do sometimes have our really silly juvenile moments.


Last edited by Meles meles on Wed 25 Oct 2017, 21:00; edited 1 time in total
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PostSubject: Re: The Tumbleweed Suite   Wed 25 Oct 2017, 20:59

Hattie,

"I want to say something about the actor who played Dracula (I went to see a play with my husband) and the only verb I can think of for play is 'jouer' but that is to play a game I think? What is the correct term for playing a role as an actor please?"


In my opinion it is "un acteur joue! un rôle dans une pièce de théâtre"

But I am a Neerlandophone (a Dutch speaking one), although I have now some 10-11 years practice in writing French, many times better than the French, while even educated people I have seen, write an infinitif instead of a participe passé...jouer instead of joué (e)... et ça m'énerve (and that enervates me) (and I have for my English-French or vice versa a dictionary from Garnier Fréres Paris from 1929)

Perhaps the English speaking Meles meles living in the South of France can correct me...or speak they overthere Catalan in his neck of the Woods (learned from educated contributors to this board), so near to the Spanish border (and Spanish border Wink is to point to the politics...language (although Catalan near to the Spanish) is something but international borders are another thing)

And thanks for your explanation concerning Hatshepsut.

PS: and Hattie, from experiences it is better to speak (especially speak as one has not time to correct)  and write what you think is right, and if you make a mistake you will never forget the right word anymore...so I learned fluently German...and some reasonable? Wink  French and English...

Kind regards, Paul.
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PostSubject: Re: The Tumbleweed Suite   Wed 25 Oct 2017, 21:03

Sorry Meles meles, crossed posts...

And I need always a lot of time to "compose" my messages... Wink

Kind regards from your friend from Belgium, Paul.
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PostSubject: Re: The Tumbleweed Suite   Wed 25 Oct 2017, 21:14

Moi aussi mon ami ... When writing French I always have to carefully check all the accents! But at least with a French azerty keyboard it's simple enough to type them.
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PostSubject: Re: The Tumbleweed Suite   Wed 25 Oct 2017, 21:28

@Meles meles wrote:
Moi aussi mon ami ... When writing French I always have to carefully check all the accents! But at least with a French azerty keyboard it's simple enough to type them.

Yes also accents, Meles meles, they let go, although the bosses are a bit strict on the French language, but even one of the bosses from Italian origin and living in the Alsacian speaking Alsace region, makes also that infintif/participe passé fault that I mentioned...
http://passion-histoire.net/

BTW I have such a cheap Compaq keyboard and it can it all...changing from azerty to querty with a simple tap...and with all the accents even the ~, but nevertheless I can't write all the signs in Spanish...

Kind regards from Paul.
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PostSubject: Re: The Tumbleweed Suite   Wed 25 Oct 2017, 21:59

Oh. French in the (almost) south of France. Could not understand a word. 

We were in the underground cave (gouffre de padirac?? The one with the underground river and boatmen). Anyway, got aboard and could not understand one word the accent/dialect. 

Thankfully we didn't capsize otherwise Hattie here would have been a goner.
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PostSubject: Re: The Tumbleweed Suite   Thu 26 Oct 2017, 03:11

I can't remember the exact name of the place Hatshepsut, ('twas back in 1999) but it was within travelling distance of Lourdes.  I did some voluntary work there as I say before the Millenium (though I had been there in 1997 too) but I remember going a boat in a cave though I can't remember if it was an underground river or an underground lake.

I go to a U3A French conversation group too (on ice this week because most of my fellow chatters are on grandparent duty with the kiddiwinks being on half-term - not this old trout because I don't have any kids and therefore no grandkids).  We usually print off an article of our own choice in French.  I took something in about the female pirate Jeanne de Clisson last time but we didn't get round to the article I had printed off because other folks' offerings from the internet were quite lengthy.

Could you use the verb "interpreter" (I haven't checked if it has any accents)?  Though I see Meles Meles has already addressed that.  I should learn the Unicode shortcuts for the various vowels with accents really but I haven't got round to it but doing Insert > Symbol and choosing the appropriate symbol in Microsoft Word is a bit of a faff and a flatulence.  I have a U3A Spanish class late tomorrow morning and I haven't done my Spanish homework yet [and had some typing (work not Spanish) that needed to be back tomorrow morning (well it is tomorrow morning now) hence I am still up though I am going to bed pronto.  When I got off the coach (which I had taken from Victoria coach station in London) in Bayonne to get the train to Lourdes I had a bit of time to wait before the train came so had a stroll round the town and I noticed that the names of the rivers (the Nive and the Ardour) were also given in Basque (though after 18 years I can't remember the names in Basque and even if I could I have no knowledge of the Basque language).

Binky Huckerback - that takes me back.  Binky Huckerback and Dame Celia Molestrangler; I never realised at the time that they were sending up Noel Coward.  I liked Beyond our Ken but I never really cottoned on to Round the Horne its successor in the same way.  I loathed the Julian and Sandy characters.  Well I'd better stop now because I am waffling rather.
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PostSubject: Re: The Tumbleweed Suite   Thu 26 Oct 2017, 05:08

@LadyinRetirement wrote:
I can't remember the exact name of the place Hatshepsut, ('twas back in 1999) but it was within travelling distance of Lourdes.  I did some voluntary work there as I say before the Millenium (though I had been there in 1997 too) but I remember going a boat in a cave though I can't remember if it was an underground river or an underground lake.

I go to a U3A French conversation group too (on ice this week because most of my fellow chatters are on grandparent duty with the kiddiwinks being on half-term - not this old trout because I don't have any kids and therefore no grandkids).  ...

Hattie,
I didn't know either the radio connection of Binky nor the classic behind Hattie - but then I wasn't and am not living in an English speaking country.

and LiR,
Re grandchildren, neither do this old bat have any, but I cheat somewhat here as my two - somewhat more - elder brothers each had three sons, who now jointly have 12 kids between the ages of 19 and 3, so I have and do enjoy grandparenting - especially with the more erudite ones as am no longer able to play the more boisterous games.


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PostSubject: Re: The Tumbleweed Suite   Thu 26 Oct 2017, 09:47

@Hatshepsut wrote:
Evening folks. Yes, Hatshepsut is the new name - the more regal and elegant name - for that of Binky.

Binky Huckaback was a character in an old radio series in Britain in the 1960s, Round The Horne. Binky was an ageing juvenile and I felt the name appropriate on other boards, but not here. 

I see. Somehow I'd got it into my head that "Binky" came from the Discworld books.

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PostSubject: Re: The Tumbleweed Suite   Thu 26 Oct 2017, 09:56

Especially with the original black cat atavar.

"CATS ... CATS ARE NICE".

Wink
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PostSubject: Re: The Tumbleweed Suite   Thu 26 Oct 2017, 10:19

It's been so long since I read some of these books it would be almost like reading them afresh.
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PostSubject: Re: The Tumbleweed Suite   Thu 26 Oct 2017, 10:47

Terry Pratchett was a writer that I never got along with. I am an avid reader, and tried one of his books once. It didn't grab me at all and I don't remember finishing it.

It seemed (hmm, how to put this politely?)....well, it seemed the type of shallow, cod sci-fi/fantasy rubbish written for teenage boys. 

I suppose he's one of those authors that you have to have a taste for, otherwise it doesn't work.


Hattie
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PostSubject: Re: The Tumbleweed Suite   Thu 26 Oct 2017, 10:48

I still occasionally search out old Round the Horne episodes on Radio 4 extra, they're still funny.

It's one of my (many) regrets that I didn't keep up with French; I was fortunate to have been taught very well and I came close to being able to think in it. Some years ago, however, I did have a sort of refresher course when I went with a friend on a tour of southern Morocco and discovered we were the only English speakers in the party. The guide conducted the tour in French with a very brief résumé in English. We soon realised that we were missing all the best bits, risque jokes in particular, so it was amazing how quickly we managed to tune back in.
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PostSubject: Re: The Tumbleweed Suite   Thu 26 Oct 2017, 11:07

The old proverb about 'use it or lose it' comes to mind.

My French is atrocious. It's almost embarrassing to think that I spent 7 years at school, with three lessons a week. I suppose it's pretty much the same for everyone.  Life takes over, the lessons fade from the mind - pushed out by the new knowledge required for one's career - and you wake up thirty years later to find that you have hardly any memory of even the most basic verb conjugations. Never mind, I'm doing my best now to repair the damage!

Hattie
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PostSubject: Re: The Tumbleweed Suite   Thu 26 Oct 2017, 11:22

Has anyone ever tried this ?:

Rosettastone

Re Dracula, Radio 4 has a broadcast this Saturday of a radio adaptation of an unmade Hammer film:

Unquenchable Thirst of Dracula
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PostSubject: Re: The Tumbleweed Suite   Thu 26 Oct 2017, 11:55

I've not tried it Trike but it is certainly true some of the best language learning methods rely on almost never using one's own native language. The Berlitz method for example, which is used by many big international companies and even EU institutions etc, makes a point of never, or almost never, teaching using ones own language ... hence the new language is not so much learnt as assimilated, just like a child acquires their mother tongue.

Hattie and Ferval ... if it's any encouragement, I never had an aptitude for languages at school. I started simple French at about 9 years old but still only just managed to pass O level. Which I largely forgot, until, rather unexpectedly, my company merged with a French firm, head office moved from New York to Paris, and I suddenly had to deal with my counterpart in France (and her English was almost as bad as my French). Even so it was only when I moved here to southern France, following redundancy, that I was really immersed for the first time in the language. And one's language ability really does improve very rapidly when one's immersed. I'm certainly not fluent but I can survive, and apparently I've even picked up a bit of a local southern French accent, which is probably no bad thing: at least I don't speak "com bowcoop dez anglayz eessie"!

However I could do with learning some basic Catalan and/or Spanish.
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PostSubject: Re: The Tumbleweed Suite   Thu 26 Oct 2017, 13:31

I got 10 out of 13 correct;

The Red Lying
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PostSubject: Re: The Tumbleweed Suite   Thu 26 Oct 2017, 17:02

I got 12 out of 13. Should I be ashamed of my knowledge of pubs and their names?
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PostSubject: Re: The Tumbleweed Suite   Thu 26 Oct 2017, 20:49

Sorry folks, I haven't been posting in the last few hours on any topic. 

My husband has had a motor car accident with a lorry, not his fault, but he has been shaken and needs support. We have been on the phone to the insurers, contaced the dealership for an estimate as to repairs cost, and taken charge of a courtesy car.
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PostSubject: Re: The Tumbleweed Suite   Thu 26 Oct 2017, 21:38

Hattie, and I think that I paraphrase here the other contributors too,

we feel with you and especially with your husband. I had two times in my life a car accident, one with a total loss and I know how it feels.

Kind regards to you and your husband from Paul.
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PostSubject: Re: The Tumbleweed Suite   Thu 26 Oct 2017, 22:20

Hatsheptsut, so sorry to hear of your husband's experience. I was knocked down a couple or three years ago crossing the entry road to a factory further up the road - I thought the car driver had waved me to cross and he thought I was standing back for him. Luckily he was only going at 5 mph so I got away with bruises but it did shake me up. I hope your husband will be back to normal soon.
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PostSubject: Re: The Tumbleweed Suite   Fri 27 Oct 2017, 09:33

@Hatshepsut wrote:
Sorry folks, I haven't been posting in the last few hours on any topic. 

My husband has had a motor car accident with a lorry, not his fault, but he has been shaken and needs support. We have been on the phone to the insurers, contaced the dealership for an estimate as to repairs cost, and taken charge of a courtesy car.


Sorry to hear that, Hattie. As long as everything is OK.
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PostSubject: Re: The Tumbleweed Suite   Fri 27 Oct 2017, 10:10

The accident was caught on our dashcam (in case any overseas readers are unfamiliar with this, it's a windscreen-mounted small camera), and so it has been fairly straightforward to report it to the insurance company.

My husband was stationary in his car, in a line of traffic, when a lorry began manoeuvring. The back end of the lorry swung out and tore through our car's front wing, both RH side doors, the rear wing and pulled the fuel cap off. Husband was shocked and shaky but otherwise OK. 

He's had a long sleep-in this morning, which is highly unusual for him as he swims every morning and is at the pool for 6.30am. Anyway, I think a good long rest will be beneficial.
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PostSubject: Re: The Tumbleweed Suite   Fri 27 Oct 2017, 13:53

I think I would have been shocked and shaken after that, Hatshepsut. I used to be a legal secretary and while I was mainly concerned with conveyancing, wills and probate, I recall that people who had had accidents did sometimes feel fatigued. Anyway, all the best to you and your husband.

While I think of it, I'm not sure if I welcomed CookieMonster to the site, so belated welcome CookieMonster.

Now I want to try and pick peoples' brains. Earlier this year I read a historical novel. Now, I don't know how historically accurate it was, but it mentions a play by Thomas Southerne entitled "Oroonoko". Sorry to display my ignorance but I had to check on the internet to see if there was in fact such a play and indeed there was, based on a story by Aphra Behn (who I had not heard of). I had intended to catch a one-woman play at the local theatre about Mrs Behn, who seems to have been an interesting personality and as well as being a writer to have been a spy. Unfortunately the jadedness that I've been prone to since I have had coeliac disease got the better of me and I just didn't feel like going. I regret it now as the play was only on for one night. I have heard it alleged that Kit Marlowe was a spy though I don't know the truth of it. Does anyone who has perhaps studied English Literature more deeply than myself know if any writers/playwrights have also been spies?
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PostSubject: Re: The Tumbleweed Suite   Fri 27 Oct 2017, 14:39

Ian Fleming was in Naval Intelligence during WW2. Perhaps not a spy as such, but he would have contact with those who were, as well as a few hard cases(SOE etc)
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PostSubject: Re: The Tumbleweed Suite   Fri 27 Oct 2017, 14:55

John le Carré (David John Moore Cornwell) was in both MI5 and MI6. He had to write under a pseudonym as intelligence officers were forbidden to write under their real name. He started writing when he was in MI5 but I believe he became a full time writer when his MI6 career came to an end as a result of Kim Philby's betrayal of British agents to the KGB in the 1960s.
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PostSubject: Re: The Tumbleweed Suite   Fri 27 Oct 2017, 15:18

Marlowe was reputedly a spy - infiltrating seditious Catholic organisations in Britain and abroad. If he was then he was a particularly complicated one (or very unsuccessful) as rumours about his treachery abounded amongst his peers on both sides of the religious divide with each claiming he really worked for the other - it depends on whose letters of the day you want to read.

Daniel Defoe also had a brief period as a spy - in his case slipping around Scotland, often using various disguises and false identities, while reporting back to Hartley, the Chancellor of the Exchequer, regarding how likely the locals would be to opt for the proposed Union (and how much each bribe should be to get the desired result in the Scottish parliament). Like Marlowe, his "spying" may not have been very clever or successful - a popular ballad in Scotland while he was there sang about "the Foe in our midst" (Defoe's actual surname, so quite a witty ditty).
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PostSubject: Re: The Tumbleweed Suite   Fri 27 Oct 2017, 15:27

Pierre Boulle in WW2 was an Free French agent working under the name Peter Rule assisting the resistance movements in Burma and French Indochina. He was captured by Vichy French and subjected two year's forced labour until the war's end, his experiences forming the basis of Le Pont de la rivière Kwaï (Bridge over the River Kwai). He's also the author of La planète des singes, originally translated in 1964 as Monkey Planet, and only later re-issued under the title Planet of the Apes.
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PostSubject: Re: The Tumbleweed Suite   Sat 28 Oct 2017, 02:05

You could probably make a case for most journalists being spies of some sort.

But I was coming here for more trivial comment.  I have learnt many things here, but mostly forgotten them fairly immediately.  But the two things I have retained (probably because they are frequently mentioned) are trebuchets and Edward Thomas.  Today one of the quiz questions in the NZ Listener was What would you do with a trebuchet? (a) Pick locks (b) Mend socks (c) Fling rocks (d) Wind clocks.  

My little grandson just turned 7, knew that from about the age of 4, but I didn't know it till our bar conversations on the BBC board, when I was about 54.  

I read something about Edward Thomas again the other day but will save that for the thread dedicated to him.  (If I can find it again.)
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PostSubject: Re: The Tumbleweed Suite   Sat 28 Oct 2017, 09:28

One thing I learned fairly recently, that because of the conversations here has become usefully committed to memory, is that in French a trébuchet is also a swing-balance (for weighing things), and that trébucher (pronounced the same) means to trip or stumble. And now the etymology for the medieval rock-thrower becomes clear, n'est-ce pas?
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