Friday, July 22, 2011

Gravity Is A Wonderful Thing

Jeeze.These Images Are Blurry.They Look Like They Have Been Faxed From Outer Space.
The Photo Below Is Of Me & My Big Brother Ziggy.
This Week's Sepia Saturday  theme is in & around the subject of Space Travel.
I have no family photos of such things.West Yorkshire in the 1960's was a tad short of Rockets & such like (except in our heads!)But I remember following all those spacecrafts and stuff......it seemed to me, Russians;Dogs;Americans;Everybody was going up there.I pondered, maybe everyone was going there & pretty soon , I would be left alone here on Earth! Happily , they all seemed to return (in one fashion or another) Gravity Is Such  A Wonderful Thing!



Finally for today, Here are some book buying ideas for the Sepian in Your Life......................

Thursday, July 14, 2011

halt!

During the Black Hawk War, Abe Lincoln was leading 20 men through a field when he saw they’d need to pass through a narrow gate.


“I could not, for the life of me, remember the proper word of command for getting my company endwise, so that it could pass through the gate,” he later recalled.


“So, as we came near, I shouted, ‘Halt! this company is dismissed for two minutes, when it will fall in again on the other side of the gate.’”



Me,Phil The Ex-Fireman ,Bryn & Mick The Italian went into Halifax tonight for Drinks.here are some photos taken.

Hacked With Permission & Thanks From ou1
For North American Readers , Here Is Some Of The Backstory.

A Video Chris Made.Nothing To Do with Rupert Murdoch!

Tuesday, July 05, 2011

Ed Milliband ate my hamster

The Northern Echo
Here Is Rebekah Brooks announcing that the News of the World and the Sun were being integrated: last week.

 A first class article  from (of all places!) The Daily Telegraph this (Thursday) morning here.
One of the many thoughts raised was that the reason Cameroon refused to condem (sic) Rebekah Brooks was that she holds too many secrets about the workings of the government machine.Better she is inside the tent pissing out.............?
Can I be the first person to coin,use & copyright the term "Murdochgate"? The comments under the piece are even better (i must have too much time on my hands if I'm reading the Telegraph website !) For example................."The closed world of the Liberal elite now firmly in control of this country has more than a whiff of pre-revolution France about it. They bask in their largesse while we the people are expected to absorb even more pain and misery........."
Orff with their heads...........!but,while we gather our knitting, here is how to Contact advertisers to get them to pull ads from The News Of The World  this Sunday


Jeremy Hunt has just said he'll allow Murdoch to own all of BSkyB. We have just three days to flood the government's public consultation with requests to stop the deal.

We've done it before -- in the last consultation Hunt said our avalanche of 40,000 messages delayed the deal as his officials had to read each email carefully, fearing a legal challenge. But the government is pushing the deal through despite the hacking scandal of murdered Milly Dowler -- the latest grim episode that shows how Murdoch's media tramples standards and ignores ethics.

Murdoch already controls more of our media than is legal in many countries – and is notorious for using his power to skew our politics. The official consultation ends this Friday -- let's tell the government we don't want his media empire to control our largest commercial broadcaster. Send a message now -- using your own words to make it stand out -- calling on Jeremy Hunt and David Cameron to refuse Murdoch's BSkyB deal until there's a full Competition Commission review and a full public inquiry into phone hacking.
If you have a UK postal code, click this Link to an extremely easy way of sending a quick & effective message of protest to The Powers That Be.

Friday, July 01, 2011

beam me up in sepia


This is a Sepia Saturday post.
Only a quicky this week.We are off to Castleton for the weekend to celebrate Kathy & Steve's recent wedding.We Stay   in this posh hotel,The Norton Grange  ! Im looking forward to trying it's Spa.It has an "Ice Room"!While I'm gone ,please ponder (people don't "ponder" near enough these days)

Boy Texting in 1911 [via:]
“Man is the only animal that can remain on friendly terms with the victims he intends to eat until he eats them.” — Samuel Butler
“Man is the only animal that laughs and weeps, for he is the only animal that is struck with the difference between what things are and what they ought to be.” — William Hazlitt
“Homo sapiens is the species that invents symbols in which to invest passion and authority, then forgets that symbols are inventions.” — Joyce Carol Oates
Martin,I had a really vivid dream last night.I dream t you owned the (only) Bar in Pennadomo .Me, Haydn ;Phil The Ex-Fireman: et al had arrived in The Village & you had put on a grand spread to welcome us.[I forgot to ask if you served Lemon Tea.!]

Sunday, June 26, 2011

Dearest Not Fade Away

When I Was 9 my big brother Zyg bought me my first L.P. It was "Buddy Holly's Greatest Hits".This was the early 60's ,after Buddy died + just before The Beatles & puberty kicked in )
These days, Holly  reminds me of Short Trousers:Chilblains (whatever happened to them? when I Lived In A Cardboard Box In The Middle Of The Road, some nights,they were all I had to keep me warm......):Being in love with Anne Haw (what A name!)who sat in the desk in front of me at Saint Mary's Primary School (i had the "hots" for her in a very pre-puberty/Catholic way):Rugby League:National Health Service glasses (those wee ones like John Lennon wore): etc etc.
ah Nostalgia!
As I lost my religion, sat in Confession , I didn't hear Latin no more ,the voice from that old rugged cross  was   Buddy Holly & His Chirping Crickets !
Anyway, out at the end June is this album of Holly covers.Featuring Lou Reed;Nick Lowe;Paul McCartney:My Morning Jacket:The Black Keys (above);Pattie Smith;Fiona Apple ;Julia Casablanca: & many more.Here are Florence & The Machine singing "Not Fade Away".

My Best Wishes To The Teachers who are having the first of their one day strikes next Thursday I was an NUT rep in Bradford in the mid-1980s when that Evil old whore Maggie Thatcher   (spit)was La Maîtresse Principale. Ah Nostalgie!


hebweb hebden bridge

Saturday, June 25, 2011

Why did the Hebden Bridge chicken cross the road?

This Is A Sepia Saturday Post

Hey Folks! It's my Aunty Brenda again! [2nd right] .This photo she labeled "Weekend Camp".I'm guessing wildly but I think it's in Essex (where she was at college) Maybe late 20's \Early 30's? A time when England still had an Empire & people rehearsed by putting on uniforms & prepare for another invasion.
I am currently reading "The Resurrectionist" by James Bradley. Interesting reading.I quote this about when the Brits first arrived in Australia and how they appeared to The Locals....
"'They thought us spirits once' he says,not turning in his saddle 'they took the colour of our skin for the pallor of the dead and imagined us their ancestors,lost and wandering in the living world once more."
My mind turned to Iraq+Afganistan
And So It Goes........................
I have created a new blog this week.With Inevitable  originality , I am calling it HEBDEN BRIDGE. You are welcome to visit it.I don't know if anything will come of it.I would like,eventually ,it to be as good as Joanne Casey's I Have Seen The Whole Of The Internet .She searches the Internet for interesting,quirky,amusing items & reposts them in one nice place.I would wish to do the same albeit specific to my hometown.
I live in Hebden Bridge.But,despite mentioning Hebden hundreds of times this blog,it  doesn't seem  to have touched the local internet-radar.For example ,if you visit Chris Radcliffe's hebdenbridge.co.uk  local "Blogs & Columns" you wont find my blog.
As I move beyond Hebden Bridge (Im thinking of my semi-move to Italy) I would like my vanity & fascination with Hebden seen just a little bit more........
So the idea is to have a separate blog.One that Google will recognize.Showing the quirky side of a quite particular place.Ideally.Eventually.Hopefully .it would be nice if ,whenever someone includes  the term "Hebden Bridge" in their Google Search,one of my alternative Hebden Bridge stories will be in the top ten results. Maybe it will one day..although,in the great scheme of things W.T.F.!
Hebden Bridge was a dead on its feet Yorkshire mill town in the 1960's.Then the hippies moved in.The place is now the Islington of the North.We have a split community.We locals found ourselves  aboriginals .....our  culture dismissed by trendy articulate middle class Southerners.[ a.k.a Bourgeoisie]
If you think I'm exaggerating ,check out  the movie Shed Your Tears And Walk Away[2011] About a split community & how Hebden Bridge has one of the highest teenage suicide rates in Britain.
The local trendy Orange Book liberalz are so articulate that  their alien  culture just drowns out the indigenous  community.
And So It Goes...............
Ironically+ Hypocritically ! I was drinking posh coffee in Hebden this morning with Shelley (over from Ireland).
'Helping her & Mick Promote their business in Italy. Today,we set up new facebook & twitter pages.She told me that ,a week on Sunday, they are placing a 4 week national advert in The Observer .It all looks good & I am happy to help.Watch this space.

A poptastic music video shot in Hebden Bridge. in 1986 Interestingly enough,me&cath moved into Hebden from Halifax in April 1985.But (before you ask!)That aint me on the Space-Hopper!

Sunday, June 12, 2011

it only rained a little bit!

Yesterday was The Hebden Bridge Handmade Parade:2011.
here are my photos.



http://www.hebdenbridge.co.uk/blogosphere/index.html
HEBDEN BRIDGE WEB
Chris Ratcliffe,pennine pens
HEBWEB
Hebden Royd Town Council."Hebden Bridge".

Thursday, June 09, 2011

raining on our parade?

Here is a still from a 1924 black&white silent movie of The Hebden Bridge Carnival.Click Here to Watch It.
Over the past 4 years it has morphed into The Hebden Bridge  Handmade Parade.
The weather forecast for this year's parade on Saturday isn't that clever. 11 15 degrees & rain!Keep your fingers crossed that it ain't so!

2009

I will add my photos from this year's Parade here over the weekend.In the meantime here are My photos from 2010 & 2009
This Is A Sepia Saturday Post.
I heard from Leanne (left) this week.We worked together a few moons ago in Halifax.She now lives +works in the Deep South.
She & other   good people from Barnsley Social Services are taking part in
The Barnsley Kilimanjaro Charity Trek 2011 helping to raise money for a local Hospice.Good Luck To All Concerned.
For my music this week I was going sneak in Dylan singing  about being
"I’m ready to go anywhere, I’m ready for to fade
Into my own parade, cast your dancing spell my way
I promise to go under it....................."
Until I Saw This Rather Groovy Parody...........

2010

Finally,Some Sepia Poetry..............
 In the drinking-well
(Which the plumber built her)
Aunt Eliza fell–
We must buy a filter.
***
Little Willie, in the best of sashes,
Fell in the fire and was burned to ashes.
By and by the room grew chilly,
But no one liked to poke up Willie.
***
“There’s been an accident,” they said,
“Your servant’s cut in half; he’s dead!”
“Indeed!” said Mr. Jones, “and please
Send me the half that’s got my keys.”
***
Father heard his children scream
So he threw them in the stream
Saying, as he drowned the third,
"Children should be seen, not heard!"
update

Friday, June 03, 2011

the laughing victorians

[Don,I got an email this afternoon telling me PJ Harvey plays The ManchesterAcademy2 in September.we are thinking of going.You&Margaret interested/available? I will email details in due course.]

Do you fancy doing a little Market Research for me? This website appeared on the web about 24 hours ago.It's more-or-less finished, but it needs a bit of tweaking in terms of colour/font/layout etc.I would appreciate anyone taking a look & giving some critical feedback.(truly) how do you think it looks?Dont Worry! I didn't do it so you wont hurt my feelings! 
You might know I bought a small/cheap place in Italy.Well Mick & Shelley (see website) are starting a business there in the splendid Abruzzo Region..Painting:Photography:Creative Writing Residential Workshops.(They already have a Painter from Hebden Bridge on board to deliver some Courses).I said I will help a little .Both with the courses themselves (I will be paid a salary for this) Also, out of the kindness of my Heart, I am organizing advertising;promotion & suchlike.It's kinda nice because it ties in with my Abruzzo Caper and I am not investing/risking any of my own monies in the venture.Let Me Know Your Thoughts.
This Week's suggested theme at Sepia Saturday is 'Trains' but I don't really have any old photos with them featured.The nearest is this one of my son Chris in The Dominican Republic when he was wee.

Instead.Consider this............ 
When Joseph-Nicephore Niepce took the first photograph in 1828, his photographic plate required an exposure of eight hours. That exposure time was drastically reduced across the course of the nineteenth century, so that by the 1890s the Collodion process had cut exposure times to two or three seconds.
Nevertheless, a three second exposure meant that subjects had to stand very still to avoid being blurred, and holding a smile for that period was tricky. As a result, we have a tendency to see our Victorian ancestors as even more formal and stern than they might have been.Retronaut
see more photos here & here
LA VITA-HOLIDAY WORKSHOP EXPERIENCES

*** **
On the other hand............ This is clever — in 1974 Cecil Slemp invented shoes with reversed soles, to leave footprints that point in the opposite direction.
So now your bloody tracks will lead to the murder scene.Of course,one year later, Bob Dylan released the album!
*** **





"

"Train" is mentioned (somewhere!) in the  lyrics of the video below.
"If the clouds don’t drop and the train don’t stop........."Bob Dylan:Basement Tapes

POSTSCRIPT in this old post I tell you how I am related to George Stevenson the very famous Victorian railway geezer! They even have a statue of him outside Euston Station in London.Although,as I recall, he's not even smiling ......



Saturday, May 21, 2011

KAZ



[above:outside a junk shop in Lanciano]
Can I point you in the direction of the Koast to Koast Kaz Fund.It's a sponsorship journey through Northern England in memory of Kaz. who died in March.Money raised  by blog following fan Rodger will go to the Ovarian Cancer Charity.Please give here if you can.
Kaz was a Lovely Liverpool Lass  (+ Everton supporter) who lived in Manchester & was a daily commentator here.,back in the day.Sail On Beautiful Lady.
I am now back in Hebden Bridge..I flew back into Leeds Bradford Airport at 3pm on Thursday.By 8pm Me & Cathy were sat in Bury Met watching The Fairports [[my photos:] A jet-setting Rock N Roll lifestyle non? Thanks To Don & Margaret.
I'm very tired.Apologies to Ex-Cappo Martin & those at the hammam.I was due to go to Tony Ts Birthday meal late last night..but far too knackered.
Work progresses on my place in Abruzzo
.But so much still to do.I seemed overwhelming at times . View Some Of My Photos Thunder in the Mountains over last weekend  forced me to stay inside and work.I stayed 4 nights  in the house .I want to get to a stage where it is fit for friends (eg Phil The Ex-Fireman) to be able to come over and help......but until the basics are in place I wouldn't want them to have to stay in a total tip.It's nearly ready to invite them over.Me & several people should be going over next month.
The village is very quiet.I found it quite spooky staying on my own there.I was alone for 90% of the time.Although can I thank Sora for feeding me one day (the best Dutch Risotto I have ever tasted!:).Sora is staying 3 weeks at Iona's house in the village.
I also met up with Mick Goggins& his his new squeeze Shelley.
I spent the best part of Wednesday in Lanciano sorting out paperwork .A special thanks to Massimo at the Bank for ,with great patience,walking me through the dark art of Italian Internet Banking.Also to Piero who explained & sorted  my Water,Electric & Council paperwork.Both are good teachers!
here are a few photos I took this time in Italy.

It's Bob Dylan's 70th Birthday next week.Out of respect for His Bobness, here is a video I took in Hebden Bridge at the recent anti-royalist street party.A band (i know not who) sing the opening riffs of 'All Along The Watchtower.''












P.S. Don.I bought a copy today of "Grateful Dead:Broadcasting Live" DVD if you don't have, I will runoff copies.We watched it tonight (2 discs) Rather suburb! A stunning "Knocking On Heaven's Door".
Finally.I just found this video on Youtube. It was posted 3 days ago. I minute of ".....the only known (existing) professionally filmed Sandy Denny footage with Fairport Convention...."Enjoy & Weep.
Finally............I found this rather strange carnival video from the village in which my house is ! Check the video here
It's an Isolated mountain region.Cut-off historically from the rest of Italy.Frankly, it shows that here...........!
Shot  in March this year.............looks like some outakes from  The Wickerman
P.S. watch the News over the next couple of weeks.Italy is about to come the next Southern European country to go belly-up financially. Remember.You heard it first here!
Shelley-Anne Crawford.Sora van Brummelen
Piero Nasuti

Friday, April 15, 2011

"MARJORYS BIRTHDAY PARTY AT BIRCHLEA 1932 LEVEN"

This is a Sepia Saturday post.
I've mentioned My Mum often enough here ( e.g.)
  Here is a photo I found (while clearing out the attic this week) of her Birthday Party ..
My Mum always spoke of her childhood as a lonely desert of a place,.My grandmother had died in childbirth.My grandad (pictured here, top/middle) was a sailor ,away from home & who had little to do with my Mum.She spent her childhood in the care of aunties in Fife & Edinburgh.She thought it a lonely existence I think.
All the more strange, then, to see this photo.It must have been her 6th birthday .Here she is , right in the middle with cake+doll.All those people around her!Even her dad!Although, I dont recognize anybody else in it.Maybe a school affair?Was "Birchlea" a school? I just dont know........... 
Maybe this is the opposite of  last week's post ?Just another way of "covering things up"? The camera never lies? Maybe this was just staged - managed? A cunning ploy to convince her she wasn't  really alone?Am I being cynical? I'm sure ,objectively , it was more complicated than that..................
One thing for sure........most of the photos I have of her childhood , she appears clutching a doll of some kind.





photos in  Halifax tonight . Tracy's Leaving Do . A Special Thanks to Nick & Dave for arranging the evening for us all+ making it all possible......

Friday, December 31, 2010

who am I when there is a sea?

A raindrop,dripping from a cloud,
Was ashamed when it saw the sea.
'Who am I when there is a sea?' it said.
When it saw itself with the eye of humility,
A shell nurtured it in its embrace.
They say that toddlers often enjoy playing more with the box the Christmas present came in rather than the present itself! Not so Me. Before Christmas , I bought myself the present of a negative scanner from the new Aldi's thats just opened next door to The Rochdale Hammam.I was royally pissed -off when I opened the box on Christmas Day to find it empty.
Yesterday I returned to complain.I now have the contents!
The first old negative ( 4x4 inches)I scanned was the above.It gave me quite a jolt.I think it was taken in Perth,Scotland.Late 1880's/early 1890's? I have never seen a photo before of my Great-Grandmother, but it must be her, she looks so much like My Mum  that its a bit disturbing.given the stern look on her face.
This is a Sepia Saturday Post.



My Thanks to Labour Councillor Bob Piper for these nice words.
+I Want To Send Some New Year Love To The Beautiful KAZ.
In Manchester.

Saturday, December 11, 2010

A heart needs a home

Theme Thursday test

The Unthanks perform Robert Wyatt's 'Dondestan' (with clogs dance).
London, Union Chapel - December 8th, 2010

Palestine's a country / or at least used to be.
Palestine's a country / or at least used to be.
Felahin, refugee (Kurdistan similarly)
need something to build on / rather like the rest of us.
Palestine's a country / or at least used to be.
Palestine's a country / or at least used to be.
Felahin, refugee (deportees similarly)
need something to build on / rather like the rest of us got

Its just a year ago that we saw The Unthanks at the  Hebden Bridge Trades Club [ my photos].. This week I booked my tickets to see them play Manchester Cathedral on 30th April.
Becky Unthanks (2nd clog dancer from the right) although born in  Northumberland , now lives less than a mile from my house in Hebden Bridge.I see her shopping in the CO-Op & suchlike........
Halifax born Dominic Rivon threw out a challenge this week on his blog Choose one question from All Soul's College exam paper & write a blog post on it.
I have picked..................... Is exile always a misfortune ?

"Exile" might usually be seen as a geographical idea. To live apart.It's also tied in with a feeling of banishment . The majority have exile trust upon them. Those who choose exile do so out of circumstance.
I guess my Dad's life could have been described as one of "Exile".Living in Britain because he couldn't return return to his home in Poland.I am sure he saw this as his total misfortune.
[Incidentally , I am looking forword to seeing the new Peter Weir film The Way Back based around the life of
Sławomir Rawicz
born in Eastern Poland near my dad & like him, conscripted into the invading Soviet army, in 1939 from which both deserted and fled through the World to escape.]
The problem with this geographical exile is that truth & fact can become hidden\lost & incomprehensive in the exile's new home. It difficult to pass the legacy on..........I , for example, still don't fully understand how my Dad got from "A" to "B".I know he escaped Poland. I know he traveled via South Africa.I know he ended up in Scotland to join the Free Polish Airforce. But I don't know how this was done. I guess I never will...............
My dad hated his exile. Maybe if you chose it yourself it is different.? The World is full of happy expectant migrants Sailing to "New Worlds".in the hope of a better life.I,m sure it's not always a misfortune. The misfortune is not having a choose in one's life.................
How odd , at this point I was going to quote something Bryce Taylor said to me once.
" To Have True Freedom You Must Always Have 3 Alternative Options In Any Decision ". You Are Not Free If You Have No Alternative.........
I studied under Bryce when doing a 2 year Transpersonal Diploma with Oasis Human Relations. He had a very powerful influence on me.I lost touch after I left in 1996.It's a measure of my exile from him that I only tonight learned just now of his death in March via the Oasis
facebook page.
How strange ,reading his obituary  in The Yorkshire Post I found out things I never knew about him.He was born in Rochdale and he was a "keen photographer, gardener and Bob Dylan aficionado."
He was full of Power............To Say I liked the man would be wrong.But I respected his power & insight. He Saw me better than I saw myself (which was a worry !) bryce was one of the most influential people in my life.It is strange now to know of my exile from him.............He changed my life is ways I still have to discover.

His position was ,maybe, that We are all in exile.but we have the fortune to find our way home.
The facebook site carries photos of tree planting ceremonies to him on October 20th in Boston Spa,Yorkshire & Boston Massachusetts ( GRLI GA).Below a photo of Bryce (holding a carpet someone thought looked like a tree stump) & me.on the grass, in exile............
Another final point.You might find yourself in Exile and never need to move an inch! You stay still & the World changes around you.The current political & economic climate a case in point.Maybe it's not a geographical thing at all......................

Saturday, November 20, 2010

A Polaroid Photo taken (By My Mum?By My Dad?) on the morning of 6th July 1977.It's in the Garden of my parents house in Halifax.
It must have been early morning.My Dad later would drive me & my Mum to The University of Lancaster to a degree awards.I was to recieve my Bachelor of Education Gong..
I had been out drinking & smoking the previous night & was a little hungover.The photo almost seems to mirror my inner-state.Digs those trippy flowers!
I remember being very proud of myself. The Duchess of Kent did the awarding.The first & only member of The Royal Family I have met,shaken hands with & spoken too.She died 13 months later from a brain tumour.She seemed very nice
A month after this photo was taken I moved to live in The East End of London to begin my teaching.
This is a Sepia Saturday post.

Friday, July 16, 2010

pretending to board a ship

This is a Sepia Saturday post.
A photo of Me.Taken by My Mum?Leith Docks.Early 1960s.
I've always had trouble with  naff jackets! No taste at all! This one must have been during my "Biggles Phase"?

Saturday, April 03, 2010

how I lost my innocence & virginity on the roof of St.Paul's Cathedral Choirboys School.....

This is an Easter Tale of sorts.I moved  for a year to London on April 1st 1971
Today I've been looking at and uploading some of my  dusty personal photos  to a  the facebook site called  YHA Carter Lane. It's  very small (23 members)but an  active site.My mind has been jogged!
[by the way,the Japanese Lady in this tale is on the left, in green,.in this first snapshot.I had been sleeping-in late on my rooftop room.They dragged me out of bed for this photo! I still look half asleep!]
Carter Lane Youth Hostel is in The City Of London ."The City" is an island within the rest of London.It has it's own Police Force.It's where the Law Courts & The Fleet Street Press were housed.At weekends it closed down.My local pub was where Dickins did a spot of scribbling.....[think The Vatican inside of  Rome]. All Pre-Wapping.:Pre-Thatcher.
Carter Lane is  just opposite St Paul's Cathedral .The Building was St Paul's Choir School ( former pupils include  Jimmy Edwards,& Walter de la Mare)
 In  May 1967.The Old School closed and...........
".Gone forever was the famous "crocodile" of boys crossing from Carter Lane to the cathedral at service time with the head chorister holding up the traffic."................  
It reopened soon afterwards as a Youth Hostel
It took me months to get used to The Cathedral bells ringing every 15 minutes [even throughout the night!].when I  first worked there as a 19 year old in 1971.I was an Assistant Warden.
It was the first time I had lived away from home.I cant remember the reason, but i seemed to have 2 rooms to sleep in.[One  led onto the building's roof.].
It was an important time in my life. I lost my virginity & had an intense & longish  relationship with a Japanese Lady who was 4 years older than me (it was the time that John & Yoko were hitting the headlines~.all very Cool+Hip  for me ).
It was also in Carter Lane that I started smoking Dope for the first time.I was introduced to Neil Young & spent many a hot summer's night dreaming  on the roof, listening to his music.
So happy memories.Also I grew up some.The Japanese Lady became pregnant by me.She wanted an abortion.I didnt.She won.We (as they say) split. The dream turned sour but, from this distance of time, the good memories far out way the bad.Ah! Nostalgia isn't what it used to be.........Finally.You will notice that I do not mention The Japanese Lady's name here.That's not me being diplomatic (after all this time,what would that matter?) The reason is I cannot remember it!
I do remember that her friend (the Japanese Lady on the right of the first snapshot) was called Yoko! Say's It All I Guess!



After this I returned to Yorkshire.I went back down to London's East End 8 years later as a Teacher.That is another story for another time.Although, I do talk already about it slightly  here.It's quite a different, harsher, experience.

Saturday, March 27, 2010

Mum & Dad.

It's a paradox.I,ve been posting quite a bit recently.I was going to visit & comment  on your blogs......(I have a backlog).Do you find that visiting & commenting takes up more time than actually creating your own posts?Anyway, I had set aside this Saturday morning to do this l.However, a charming roofer from Bradford came this morning  at 9am.......to check a leak.He was straight out of Last Of The Summer Wine!Soooo.....he was chatting for 3 hours & the morning has gone!
Me & Cathy are off to Manchester this afternoon & staying-over until Sunday ( It's Don & Margarets Silver Wedding gig).I will try & catch up on my return.
Next week I visit Bob in Bacup to help him set up his own blogspot.Also on Wednesday I stop over at Steve's in Shaw......a pissup in Royton!
See other Sepia Saturday posts here

This is a captured still from an 8mm film.It was taken in Poland in 1965.
My Dad had been away from his home village since WW2 ,25 years previously.
My Grandma was dying.He had come home to see her for the last time.
In this photo he is pointing out to my Mum a stream he used to play in as a child.

Friday, February 19, 2010

you keep me hanging on the telephone...........

Have you heard of The Samaritans?
Founded in 1953 in The East End Of London.
All major towns & cities in the U.K. have branches.Open for email;visits & telephone calls 24 hours a day 7 days a week.
I was a volunteer in Halifax for 7 years.I also helped regionally & nationally with Training.
Here is a little history behind the organization.
Non - Religious , yet initially founded by a vicar Chad Varah who was moved by the suicide of a 13 year old local girl.She had started
menstruating and, thinking she had a terminal disease ,(with nobody to talk too), she killed herself.
I met Chad a couple of times in his later years.(photo above).His simple idea of befriending filled a lonely gap in British Life.
It's not counseling.You don't talk anybody out of 'topping themself' .You just stand alongside them and (to use that awful American expression ) "Feel Their Pain" with them. Never a Judge. Never a Jury.
Because it is a non-religious outfit.And because it is totally inclusive (after some hard-nosed training *blushes*) , you get a really nice mix of volunteers to work with.
Usually , volunteers will work in pairs.Very easily you might find ,say, a 19 year old big ugly Chav  with tattoos & sweaty armpits sharing a shift with a 70 year old Hyacinth Bucket look alike in twin-set and pearls! Despair comes in all shapes and sizes and so do the friends who witness this despair.
Being a Samaritan is one of the Proudest things I have ever done.
This photo was taken in the late 1970's. A Float in the Halifax Charity Gala.  
I would love to tell you that I,m the 3rd person in the tub,under the bubbles.But,That, would be a lie...........
This is a Sepia Saturday post.

Only while writing this post, I found Here  the  contact details of The Sams in The U.S.A.
[forgive the dreadful pun in the title of this post.Forgive ,also, My posting of Debbie Harry on my (much neglected) Music Blog.]  !
Click here for a cartoon called "Watch out! Stephen Fry has joined the Samaritans!"
+Did you know that Phil Selway ,the drummer with Radiohead, is\was (?) A Samaritan?I also learned via this link that Phil Selway went to the same Teacher Training College  (C.F.Mott,Liverpool) as me!As did Julian Cope.

*Monday update: This terrible story.Politics at it's worse.The Micky Mouse Telephone helpline called "The National Bullying Helpline".Is causing a minor storm here in pre-election Britain.They claim that government staff rang their helpline claiming our Prime Minister bullies them.........which may be true\it may not.However,they broke all the rules of caller-confidentiality.As always with Politics.Dont ask "WHY" ask "WHY NOW"*

Thursday, January 14, 2010

after the goldrush............................


More uploads from my family's history here.............more info shortly.........Yesterday,.I met My Brother Zyg with Cathy & my Sister-in-Law Jean at The Bear in Todmorden.We had Lunch &; he gave me several Newspaper cuttings relating to Our Family's presence in North America. (not read them yet!) +137 more photos to share including the one above..........It's kind of tricky sharing & scanning these photos as they are both small & stuck in a photo album.I dont want to damage anything so i will take my time to copy them safely........
Here are the first batch I've uploaded.Something I never knew, My Aunty Brenda was born in Canada. My Grandfather moved there in the early 1900's "looking for gold" :"goldpanning" Whatever........I will give you more detail when i understand it more myself.
I have a postcard from Canada.Later my Grandfather must have moved South, hence these photo from Saranac Lake in upstate New York. .
I have been sharing these photos on facebook with Historic Saranac Lake
Turns Out It's Not Connected with Robert Louis Stevenson.But Interesting,None The Less (just mere coincidence a Family member returned?)......
.Sorry I have been AWOL from blogging .will visit you soon!Check Out Alan's Sepia Saturday for other romps !

Friday, January 08, 2010

Lang may yir lum reek wi ither fowk's coal

click image below for biggary & detail
frús'trey-ting-lee.........if enlarged ,you can see the faint inprint of a previous letter written over the top of this Xmas card.............................

"lang may yir lum reek "or 'long may your chimney smoke'.............a shortened version of “Lang may yir lum reek wi ither fowk's coal.” ( “Long may your chimney smoke with other people's coal.” )
This is my contribution to Alan's Sepia Saturday .As i told Alan the other week in Union Cross pub in Halifax I have a big box full of old (mainly sepia) photographs I need to scan/preserve.This is one i pulled out at random.The problem with many of these photos is ,although they are connected to my family, I really do not know the detail behind them.My Mum's side of the family came from Fife & Edinburgh. One of the few things I know about what is a very complicated family tree is that I am related to Robert Louis Stevenson .
The reason it is complicated & why big chunks are unknown to me is that my maternal grandfather was married 3 times .His first 2 wives (including my grandmother) died in childbirth.He had 3 children.One to each wife.My Mum had a half-brother & a half-sister.each of who had different mothers!


Although all the 3 were reasonably close they ended up living throughout the UK.One in the Home Counties of England.One in Edinburgh & my Mum in Yorkshire..My childhood was an endless series of trips to distant half -Aunts and quarter -cousins!


Genealogy has always been an ology-too-far for me .It's just too damn complicated!My maternal grandfather died (in Malta.he was a sailor) in 1951.He kind of abandoned my Mum when she was wee.So she was never very forthcoming on him & his relationships and the finer points of family history.Added to which my Dad's Polish family was even more complicated & distant to me .Astrology has always seemed a better bet!


Anyway this is a series of photos I had passed onto me when my half-Aunt Brenda died in Edinburgh 1985.This was a Christmas Card sent from Saranac Lake in upstate New York.


My guess is it was posted around the late-1800's or very early 1900's.Another guess it was sent to a member of my extended family.Maybe the sender too was a relative? I have several other photos from North America around the same period.I have about twelve from the series.Lots of Snow!It's really frustrating because one is of The Family Dog (with HIS name written on the back).I know the name of their bloody hound but not theirs!
Finally.For This Week.Here is another photo I dug out today.Again I know little.I seem to remember my Mum saying they were Family.and the house is in The Americas.Another mystery............but please look here.You could write a whole historical tv mini-series on the basis of this one photo alone!


Sometimes Life is like getting a 1000 piece jigsaw for Christmas.Then,come January you find out that 743 bits are missing................................

POSTCRIPT: [click ]
Coincidence...............after writing the above I went to Wiki and read up on the life of Robert Louis Stevenson.Turns out he wintered in Saranac in 1887! Of Course my post is probably 99% totally unconnected with this fact..but it does make you think.................

at last, a Protest Song about Afganistan..............


"..............Drawn from Martin Carthy's extensive repertoire, the song is a Napoleonic anti-war ballad about crippled cannon-fodder, brought bang up to date to reflect the toll paid by amputee veterans of Blair's wars..............." INDEPENDENT:

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Ralph Winston Fox.


“He is ignored by the Dictionary of National Biography and Encyclopaedia Britannica. There is no portrait of him in the National Portrait Gallery. He is a man largely without honour in his native town and despite obituary notices in most of the major newspapers, and a memorial service attended by 1,500 people.............."............the only memorial to Fox which exists in Halifax is a small plaque on a bench at Bull Green – on which the date of his death is incorrectly recorded...............[from:]
n.b. The ßench is outside what used to be the main Gents Public Toilet in the town !One the other hand, the Spanish recently put up a monument to him in the town of Lopera where he was killed.Sort of proves J.C.'s point that "a prophet has no honor in his own country". ?



The Great Halifax Marxist Writer&Fighter Ralph Winston Fox. I also have a copy (somewhere!)of an unpublished dissertation I helped research 15 years ago on his Life & an out-of-print copy of one of his novels ,if you wish to borrow?
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ralph_Winston_Fox
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/International_Brigades








Friday, September 05, 2008

She Flew..........................

Tie two birds together.
They will not be able to fly,even though they now have four wings
[HAKIM SANAI]



My Mum Died At 7 pm Last Night.
This Is A Photo Of Her Taken By The Halifax Evening Courier in 1983.
I was quite embarrassed & puzzled about it at the time.
She had left the Budgie's cage open &;the living room window open.It had flown away......................!I really do not know what she was thinking of? She lived very near the Newspaper Building.Perhaps she hoped the bird had flown in and perched on the Editor's desk?
Anyway.She was appealing to the readers to report any sightings.
More innocent times.These day the local paper is full of Murders &;; Drugs Raids......................
6 months after this photo was taken My Dad died suddenly.............................
I have prettier photos&;stories&memories of This Beautuiful Woman...........but this story seems so poignant to me today.



Neil Young "ßirds":Performance from ßridge School ßenefit 1991.

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Champion Jack Dupree


image:from


Click here to read more about The Champion.


I got a great Email yesterday From Champion Jack Duprees grandson.Just a few corrections regarding my post on October 17th 2006
Jack didnt live in Ovenden,Halifax until his death.He & his wife moved to Hanover.Divorced &
He therefore died in Germany (not Halifax as I had said).
The KKK burned alive both Jack,s parents.
The Childrens Home Jack was brought up in wasnt run by Louis Armstrong (as i said!).Rather, Louis was himself an orphan at the same place (only at a later date)
Also, The Anniversary of Jack's death is on the 21st of this month.
William Thomas Dupree was, in my 'Umble Opinion, one of the finest Bluesmen ever recorded.It is also a matter of great Pride to me that he lived part of his great life in my hometown of Halifax.
Here is The Illustrated Champion Jack Dupree Discography .
Here is Champion in His Pomp.









Regards To Cazza for the Information.




{PS the Cute Little Girl in The Photo is Georgiana.}


CHAMPION JACK DUPREE MUSIC MP3 DOWNLOADS: =http://www.mp3.com/artist/champion-jack-dupree/summary/

Manchester : 1st December

R.I.P, CHRISTINE McVIE you know i saw her live once, in 1970 fronting Chicken Shack at Halifax Rugby League's ground! ßénchplayer · N...