Tuesday, October 31, 2006

Happy Halloween (new hair)

Massive cat.

Glen has a massive cat.

I'd heard him tell of the collossus that is Cassius but had never actually met the beast. I was afraid that I might appear rude if I sat in his apartment with my jaw on the floor exclaiming "Jesus! It's huge!"

But he is a really, really big cat.

Look at the pictures and judge for yourself. I must assure you that no perspective has been altered, these images really do portray actual size.

Cassius happily cooperated with all these pictures.

We tried using cellphones to give a sense of the massive scale.

I should also add that Cassius is one big lump of love, a very friendly and affectionate animal, even if he is the size of a small horse.

And it is done.

After a week of working up to it, a false start and lots of inner conversations, I finally got shaved. Thanks to Glen for doing the deed and Jane for the pictures.

Me before, all fluffy and suddenly falling in,love with my gorgeous, luxuriant hair.

Glen, the master barber. I was a bit disconcerted by the way he kept refering to himself as 'Sweeney Todd'.

Given the opportunity who wouldnt try a few styles?

There was beer, quite a bit of beer.

Ta da!

So remember kids, this is all for Joe and his 'shave your head campaign. You can still donate. check out the link on getwellsoonjoe.

Thursday, October 26, 2006


I will be shaving/having my head shaved on Monday.
There's still plenty of time to donate (check links on previous post)
I'm hoping that the world's greatest bald guy/all round nice bloke Glen will do the deed. I've promised him beer.

Wednesday, October 25, 2006

It's all gotta go!

The picture shows some of my hair. Dirty blonde, thick and strong. And soon to be shaved from my head. Completely, to the bone. Gone.


Because lil Joe has got leukemia and it's the right thing to do.
If you want to donate* (and this is not a pitch, just if you feel like donating)to his parent's chosen charity click upon this link.

For a more indepth look at Joe's progress you can check his blog. Get Well Soon Joe at the bottom of the links.

I'm guessing I'll visit the Park Slope Barbershop within the week. Just waiting for the nod from across the pond.

If you do wish to donate , under no circumstances give any money to me. I won't accept it, it'll just end up down the pub.

Tuesday, October 24, 2006

Book Learning #26

Letters to a young politician by Alistair MacAlpine.

I had wanted something that would have illuminated the shadowy world of the Tory MP, I ended up with a flighty, sub Wodehouse ramble through drunkeness and intruige. It was fair enough but it just reminded me why we should never trust our elected officals and why Tories are almost always complete wankers.

Friday, October 20, 2006

Currently obsessed with...

Jenny Lewis and the Watson twins.
(Thanks Listmaker)


Thursday, October 19, 2006

A poem.

Say not the Struggle Naught availeth

SAY not the struggle naught availeth,
The labour and the wounds are vain,
The enemy faints not, nor faileth,
And as things have been they remain.

If hopes were dupes, fears may be liars;
It may be, in yon smoke conceal'd,
Your comrades chase e'en now the fliers,
And, but for you, possess the field.

For while the tired waves, vainly breaking,
Seem here no painful inch to gain,
Far back, through creeks and inlets making,
Comes silent, flooding in, the main.

And not by eastern windows only,
When daylight comes, comes in the light;
In front the sun climbs slow, how slowly!
But westward, look, the land is bright!

Arthur Hugh Clough


Tuesday, October 17, 2006


I had absolutely no idea who Lanoe Hawker was untill about 5 minutes ago.

Now I have a vague sense of a member of the lost generation resurfacing as a psuedonym for my mildly famous older brother.

That's right, My brother has started a blog.

Tis a fledgling thing but as we have long held true in the 'mondale' clan "from tiny acorns do mighty oaks grow".
That's like a family motto.
So is "lark, see the mighty oaks of yore as they stride the land from Hapton to Portishead".
Another is "Never Relax!!"
And of course, the Delphic response to any question "timing".

Anyway, enjoy the blog, watch it grow.

Saturday, October 14, 2006

Book Learning #25

Don’t get too comfortable by David Rakoff.

I saw him as a guest on The Daily Show last week.
He was talking about the log cabin Republicans and was rather amusing.

I thought that this would be a hilarious read.

Ridiculously, in between books hilarious.

It wasn’t.

It was well written and amusing. Perhaps more interesting than amusing. In fact, for the most part it held my attention and inspired thought. This was no rollicking Sedaris style yarn telling, This was funny in parts but more often educational in others, lots others.

The bit about Log Cabin Republicans was funny and pathetically, horribly sad.

The bit about citizenship and identity in the post 9/11 world was funny and fascinating and scary and wierd.

The bit about everybody in the world being equal to a piece of literature , some of us The Guttenburg Bible, some of us those little pink notes that say ‘while you were out’. That was funny.

But I wanted hilarious.

Friday, October 13, 2006

Get well soon Joe!

Joe is my brother's nephew.

Sounds a bit tenuous but it's not. We all larked about with Joe's parents before they became parent's etc and long ago formed some type of East Anglian mafia (albeit a sometimes diasphorous one)

Joe's five and has got some nasty stuff going on. I'm going to be keeping up with his progress (and that of his exhausted parents and lil brother and as yet to be born sibling) Youi can check out this fledgling blog at the rather obvious sounding link below.

Good Luck!

Friday the Thirteenth.

And we are having a mirror delivered!!!!!

Since Frau random Doubt mentioned 'the mirror man' I have not been able to get the Human league's "Mirror Man" out of my head. If you're not familiar with this pop classic from the 80s just ask me and I'll sing a few bars.


Thursday, October 12, 2006

Go. Go now.

Football news.
England's new manager Steve Mclaren is shit.
He should resign now.

This blog is formally committed to his dismissal/resignation.
A string of bloody awful results against third rate opponents.
Not acceptable.

England fans will recal the nightmare that was Mr Taylor's reign in the early 90's.
We cannot allow a repeat of those years. Christ, Nigel Worthington would do a better job.

Tuesday, October 10, 2006

Book Learning #24

Finding George Orwell in Burma by Emma Larkin.

This is one for the Orwellistas out there.

I say that because Ms Larkin litters quite a few indiscreet spoilers in this rather engaging book. If you are planning on reading any of Orwell's books in the near future and you don't wish to know the endings/broad themes of such works as Animal Farm, 1984, Burmese Days, Keep the Aspidistra flying, The Clergyman's daughter then come back to this book when you are done with the originals. Of course, If you have no intention of working through Orwell's books then you can read this without a hitch, that's what the spoilers are for.

Having said all of that this is an enjoyable accompaniment to the library of any Orwell fan. Larkin uses a trilogy of books by Orwell as a backdrop to recent Burmese history. Burmese Days, Animal Farm and 1984. The first represents the British colonial times, the second the establishment of socialism in Burma after WW2 and the third the totalitarian 'thought state' that exists today.

By a series of discreet encounters with Burmese dissidents and thinkers she traces Burmese history along with Orwell's experiences as a British policeman in the 1920s.
She attempts to find some of the locations that Orwell would have known and some of the settings for the novel Burmese days. She also picks away at modern Burma, both as a political entity and a tourist destination.

All the time she is attempting to evade the long arm of the Military who run Burma. They seem to be everywhere, suspicious of all foreigners as well as almost all Burmese. She also aims to find references to Orwell's Burmese experiences in his other books. I'm not so sure she succeeds with the last point but she does achieve a fine read and a glimpse into one of the world's darkest corners.

A recent article on Burma's current political shennanigans

Sunday, October 08, 2006


For a moment I wasn't sure which I enjoyed more; watching the Mets win or watching the Yankees lose.
I guess that moment has passed.

Friday, October 06, 2006


So I lost the conker fight.

My Boss had a much bigger conker, it was a year old.
He'd told me where to find conkers in Prospect Park. When I found the tree last Saturday it was littered with very small conkers.

I smelled a conspiracy but kept quiet, not wanting to upset anything before the big bout.

I would never wish to smear an opponent, I just wonder how the hell he sleeps at night?

Truth be told it was a very close fight, No stampsies, lots of clean hits on both sides. The music teacher did a great job with the organ music. Towards the end both conkers developed large splits, it was simply a case of who connected next.

He did.

Still, I like to think that I have become the 'People's champion' or even better, the 'Children's champion' because children are better than grown up people because they are the future. I lost to 'The Man', I was their underdog. I have had a bunch of kids commiserate with me as I pass through the hallways. Perhaps I shall become their 'Queen of Hearts'.

One Hell of a field trip

I love Ellis Island. The ferry ride, the views.
Yesterday was one of the best field trips ever. Perfect weather, The kids rocked, great times.
Just look at one of the best locations for yard/recess in North America.
(They also learned some stuff but hey, check out the views!)

Wednesday, October 04, 2006

By the time I post this...

...his replacement may well have been hired.

Ah, Nigel. We had the best of times and some of the worst.