Blogs

the digital economy (notes)

Setting the scene move fast and break things enriches the already wealthy. The Schumpeterian idea is our future for better or worse. Children born now will be the most tracked in history. In some novels only the wealthy can eradicate their digital footprint. Paradoxically, not to be known, is to be somebody. The security risk of tracking devices in our home was touched on here. It's not just phones, but our fridges, washing machines, kettles,...

So Long Marianne

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cZI6EdnvH-8 This song takes me back to 1973... a village called Oberjoch (over the hill) in the Bavarian Alps in December. Six feet of snow! I was learning to ski with 49 Field Regiment, Her Majesty's Royal Artillery. Just six of us squaddies plus instructor. We went to a local gasthaus one night and bumped into some young ladies from a German finishing school. They were strictly supervised by a formidable matron...

Carl MacDougall (2006) Scots the Language of the People.

This anthology of Scottish writers, illustrated by their poetry or prose, was a TV series. I’d quite like to have seen it. I’m not sure how it would have worked, off the page, but no matter. The piece that stuck a real chord with me, was from someone I’d never heard of James Kennedy ‘The Highland Crofter’ (below). It was a lament for the Highland Clearances. Kennedy, a blacksmith and evicted crofter left Loch Tay and settled in Doune, Canada...

Leggings – the Morning Blast of Reality Radio.

Leggings – the Morning Blast of Reality Radio. Thought you'd like to know that old greedy Mabel and her family have never given up! They have incredible stamina. They've been here keeping me awake for most of the week, getting intense by last night. They achieved their aim until about 3.15 today, when I stopped trying to sleep and got up for breakfast. It wasn't far off the magic hour of 4.00 when Grandfather and I would have started our day...

Leggings - a trip to a market town.

from my facebook of yesterday, call it frustration... " Rosalind Lee 12 hrs · Went off to Dereham today and saw Grand-daughter and her parents... while shopping in QD I saw out of the corner of my eye. A woman, dressed poorly in plain colors lingering over the main aisle... it was if she thought I couldn't see her yet I did. She looked almost fairy-like, grey, haggard skin, as tired as an old sin. As soon as she noticed that I could see her she...

Castle Pillock: No Place Like Home

Over Christmas, the Scion casually announced that he and Girlfriend had been talking babies. I thought I coped rather well. He and I were in the kitchen at the time, making cups of tea for the assembled masses, and I didn’t drop the kettle and scream, ‘ You can barely feed and clothe yourself, let alone a poor defenceless child! ’. Instead I kept the boiling water within the parameters of the pot and said mildly, ‘Do you think that’s a good idea...

The Colours They Are Fine by Alan Spence 1977

When I read Alans' sequenced tales from boyhood up to leaving Glasgow for London and returning for Hogmanay .a line from the opening'Tinsel' hit hard. Wee Aleck is reading his Wonders Book of the World and 'nothing in the book was like anything he had seen'. I was 19 then and from Wembley Park. Ok no-one in my family was called Janet or John and I had a lot of aunts mostly living abroad who were all called Eva or Trude but the houses, the...

Castle Pillock: 'Hard Sun' on the telly

Hard Sun, Dir. Brian Kirk, BBC One, Saturdays 9:35pm BECAUSE IT’S A REVIEW, THERE’S LIKELY TO BE SPOILERS IF YOU HAVEN’T WATCHED ALL THE EPISODES SO FAR. IS THAT CLEAR? I’m all for giving things a proper go. If there are six episodes to something, I’ll give it to at least the third before deciding life’s too short. However, there are times when I find it hard to stick to this philosophy. On paper, Hard Sun is right up my street. It’s a bit...

A light has gone out over the Mississippi.

I was shocked and saddened to receive the news of the passing of my friend, author and designer, Shannon Ware. It came through in the same manner as we met - on Facebook. One of her close friends and fellow writers contacted me to tell me Shannon had passed suddenly; some complications from the flu. She was 54. I once asked her for her address, to send a thank you for all the work she’d done, but Simi would only tell me that she lived near the...

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