Posted in November 2013

The Biggest Bird in The World

When I was a child we went on a family holiday to a famous volcanic lake. I recall spending all afternoon walking round it, frustratingly slowly as my younger sister always complained of being tired, but as soon as we turned for home, she was suddenly full of energy. when I visited it as an … Continue reading


She Loikes Me

Following on from the previous post about cows and cowmen of a century ago, this account is not just a charming one about an old man who is clearly at ease with his animals and, though clearly poor and not well travelled, seems to be a genuinely contented man. But in his behaviour with the … Continue reading

The Silence of the Cows

After watching the wonderful film, ‘the Moo Man’ I have become interested in how cows behave, and how we interact with them. It is not enough to go along with John Berger in his ‘Looking at Animals’ which describes how we have lost touch with nature, and how animals used to be our intermediaries between … Continue reading

Weighing the Earth

There are some scientific propositions that at first seem to be utterly pointless, and trying to find the weight of the earth seems to be one of them. Until you realise that weight affects gravity, so is incredibly important in astronomy, which was an incredibly popular subject in the 18th century, as its role in … Continue reading

Lansdowne’s Letter

There are frequent calls in Britain to increase inclusion, to get rid of elitism, especially in the House of Lords, but the aristocracy have not been all bad. At the height of Margaret Thatcher’s slashing of the welfare state, it was often these elite gents who had the time to read proposals properly, and as … Continue reading

Welcoming Foreigners

Britain’s government is currently trying to think of ways to discourage migrants coming to these shores from Bulgaria and Romania when these countries are admitted to the European Union in a few months. ¬†Allegations are being made that this is making Britain seem to be the nasty country, unwelcome to foreigners, only adding to the … Continue reading

Bedminster Children

For most of Bristol’s history, the region south of St Mary Redcliffe was outside the city limits, but when The Floating Harbour was built in 1805-9 a large number of Irish navvies moved into the low lying area of what is now Bedminster. It seems many of them settled and were joined by the near … Continue reading

William Shatner’s Dingle Dangle

Cerys Matthews, singer and DJ often talks of her years in Nashville, where she was constantly horrified by the dangerous practice ¬†of deep frying a turkey over an open gas flame on the porch of a wooden shack with lots of kids and dogs running around. Here is William Shatner rapping about the dangers, so … Continue reading

Country Idylls in English Music

Last night’s broadcast of Stuart Maconie’s ‘The Peoples’ songs’ was not one of the best, as it was not very focused and I am starting to think the series is running out of ideas, though there were some good bits to it. It started out mentioning the 1970s when rock stars were buying huge lear … Continue reading

Science and Ignorance

I love TED talks, and don’t get time online to see enough of them. This is from Stuart Firestein, debunking what science is. He makes some astute points on what science is, and leads into the future of education. This is brilliant, but he is only telling one side – that of the study and … Continue reading