My salad dressing days

Column in The Guardian continues to elude me…
May 26, 2005, 7:44 pm
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Am I going wrong somewhere?

Dear Mr Rusbridger

I wondered if you might consider carrying my blog as a weekly column in G2. I couldn’t help noticing that David Aaronovitch has recently given up his column, so I’m guessing you have an opening right now…

Blogs are very ‘now’ and Guardianistas being double-espresso-drinking, jazz-listening hipster types want to feel that they are where it is and all that.

I know you have a couple of folk who write soi-disant ‘blogs’ about their Guardian-sponsored travels around the world, but, come on, those aren’t REAL blogs, are they?

Anyway, a bit more about MY blog. A friend said to say that it is a ‘mishmash of humorous musings on the modern world’ (and certainly, my Dad says my posts often cause him to titter quietly of an afternoon stuck in a dreary office). Oh, and some people who I could not possibly know have posted comments on my blog. So it’s only a matter of time before Google Adserve really starts generating a serious income for me.

I’ve been ‘blogging’ since December last year: that’s six whole months! (Well, minus four months when I was visiting my Guru in India.) I hope that gives you a sense of my commitment and ability to deliver regular copy.

Well, I hope to hear from you soon. Will you be at Hay this year? Hope to see you there. (New-fangled blogger I may be, but I still dig all the old style literary stuff too. Does that sound to you like a potential USP?).

Love, UC

P.S. Can I call you Alan?


‘Tis our national duty
May 24, 2005, 8:02 pm
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House sales in England and Wales have fallen by over a third. Retail sales are down on this time last year. Economists are scratching their pointy chins and muttering the words ‘recession’ and ‘looming’. But what can we do? At times like these, a sense of powerlessness grips the nation. What difference can a person make?

Well, the answer is surely this: we must shop. Everyone should do their bit, however young, old, wealthy, impoverished. It could be something small, a gesture. Such as opting for a grande Americano when you might previously have ordered a tall. Or NOT resisting those sweets at the checkout when previously you might have bitten your bottom lip and dug your hands deeper into your jeans pocket.

Yes, we are only talking about a few pence, but heck, a few pennies soon make a pound and a pound…well, you get the picture.

Think of the Three Wise Men. I mean, how much are a few sticks of incense these days? 99p? And I am reminded, whilst we are on the subject of things biblical, of the hymn ‘In the bleak midwinter’ and the words ‘What can I give Him, poor as I am? If I were a shepherd, I would bring a lamb’.

Of course, if you are much more well-endowed in the smackeroonies department, think BIG: had you considered a new yacht, for instance? And word on the grapevine has it that Skegness is the new Southwold. Two up/two downs are selling for the price of a garage in Chelsea. Marvellous.

We CAN make a difference. So screw your consumer credit issues, go forth and shop. ‘Tis our national duty.

P.S. Clearly, I am of a different view. I believe you should buy your clothes in charity shops, only eat fruit that has fallen from the trees and chickens who have fallen down dead from exhaustion after having been given too much outside space to run around in. I will be staying home and finishing off my macrame pot holder, thank you very much.

May 24, 2005, 7:52 pm
Filed under: Uncategorized

Well, these are kitten heels. If we’re talking stilettos, this is about as high as I am prepared to go. Purchased from the appropriately named shop ‘Joy’ not so very far from where I live. Franco Banetti, I salute you!

What Katiedid
May 23, 2005, 2:20 pm
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They’re coming thick’n’fast now… And this one includes a header containing a snap of a pensive Bertrand Russell. Nice touch, Katiedid.

My namesake
May 23, 2005, 1:50 pm
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(in the bird kingdom, that is)

I tend to abbreviate my name to ‘Chick’ but the name on my birth certificate is in fact ‘Chickadee’ (well, OK, truth be known: was not available).

The kindly Paul family of Chickadee Lane (yes, really), Berks County, PA, have put together a wonderful site which they describe as ‘ the most complete source of information about Chickadees on the internet’. Wow.

On the site, Tom Brown Jr of ‘The Tracker’ talks of the chickadee’s ‘indomitable spirit’ and there is even advice on what to do if you find a baby bird. A public service website if ever I saw one.

Has your appetite been sufficiently whetted? I feel sure it has. All you have to do now is click…

Ode to a ringroad
May 23, 2005, 1:46 pm
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Some people dote
On places remote
Others delight
In taking a flight
To a faraway land
Such as Egypt, Japan

If left up to me
Where I’d like to be
Is snuggly inside
The M25

Some feel fulfilled
Ascending a hill
In countryside green
Outside Aberdeen
Others get kicks
Being eaten by ticks

But given the choice
Where I find my voice
Is someplace inside
The M25

Some travel miles
To climb over stiles
Others will wander
Hither and yonder
To catch a quick glimpse
Of bare-bottomed chimps

But if you ask me
Where I’d rather be
It’s tucked up inside
The M25

Oooh, I’ve come over all ‘Howard’s End’…
May 16, 2005, 9:28 pm
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Well, we needed a new picture, didn’t we? If only I could paste in Sam West (as Leonard Bast) pacing through the wood at dusk…or was it dawn??