Go ask Alice!

18 Nov

Few things musical exemplify more perfectly the acid-drenched clarion call to sixties hedonism than the west coast sounds of Grateful Dead, Jefferson Airplane and Quicksilver Messenger Service. It’s a truth universally acknowledged that the greatest of these was Dead but … Read More »

Mangled thinking, Mr Behr

17 Nov

Dreadful article by Rafael Behr in the Grauniad today. You get the gist from its headline: Jihadism a symptom of western policy? That’s mangled history. In a piece whose thrust is to rubbish Jeremy Corbyn – in this instance for … Read More »

Do geese see god?

9 Nov

do nine men interpret – nine men I nod.  Thanks to Pete for this gem: a song by Weird Al Yankovic that’s not only a classy parody of Dylan (Subterranean Homesick Blues and From a Buick 6 spring to mind) … Read More »

Buddha in the machine revisited

8 Nov

I’ve never doubted it’s possible to speak of personal things in an impersonal way, though I’m equally sure there are those who can’t tell the difference. Four years ago a cancer scare coincided with looming redundancy at Sheffield Hallam Uni. … Read More »

Amsterdam at close of 2014

7 Nov

The Jordan: 17th century and formed by the western edge of a hemisphere of concentric canals: Herengracht, Keisersgracht, Prinsengracht. Its houses, their foundations reclaimed by the finest Dutch engineers – world masters at cheating the seas and taming the polder … Read More »

Costa Brava in February

6 Nov

My super-smart former colleague and pal Mick and the lovely Mags –  they spend their days wandering Britain’s waterways on a narrow boat, Rose of Arden – took three months out on the Costa Brava. I joined them for a … Read More »