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World Affairs

Keeping a perspective

As most Rusters will be only too well aware, we oldies often have to make difficult decisions in order to negotiate a careful balancing act between – on the one hand – expressing our bewilderment that the young seem to delight in disregarding or overturning all we know and can teach them about [...]

November 27, 2020 // 0 Comments

The Crown/Netflix

Largely out of curiosity I watched the first two episodes of The Crown.   I was particularly curious to see whether my recollection of events tallied with those of the series. In one event, the murder of Prince Louis Mountbatten (played by Charles Dance), they did not. I recall feeling a deep [...]

November 17, 2020 // 0 Comments

What’s in a name?

It’s my practice as a working housewife to do my ironing at midday whilst listening to the Radio 3 programme hosted by Donald Macleod on lives of great composers. This week he features the American jazz pianist James Johnson, chiefly known for writing the Charleston. I was intrigued to learn he [...]

November 10, 2020 // 0 Comments

Book review (a curate’s egg)

I bought Robert Colls’ new book This Sporting Life: Sport & Liberty in England, 1760-1960 about three months ago after both reading a review of it in one of the Sunday newspapers and having it recommended to me by a pal because of my general interest in boxing and its forebear – [...]

October 21, 2020 // 0 Comments

Facing the facts

It fascinates me how the human race always presumes in the present that life as it is will never change and yet simultaneously also manages to embrace the new – technology, fashion, media obsessions, medical breakthroughs et al. – as it comes along with varying degrees of enthusiasm ranging [...]

October 12, 2020 // 0 Comments

World War One/PBS

There is a tendency in covering World War One to which I plead guilty of limiting our interest to the loss of young life in the trench warfare. This excellent series gave a much broader canvas and I was particularly interested in 1916-18. With war bogged down in the trenches of northern France and [...]

October 6, 2020 // 0 Comments

Farewell to one of the best

When it comes to having had personal acquaintance with the world’s Great and Good my historical record is relatively modest. Those that judge these things may hold that there are several degrees of qualifying ‘acquaintance’ but today I am concentrating upon just two – on the one hand, those [...]

September 25, 2020 // 0 Comments

Supper and entertainment

Yesterday for my sins I went for an early evening meal in the suburbs with a couple I have known for nearly five decades – and, as we remarked during our meal, that fact alone drives home both just how old we are and how fast time flies. (Only people above a certain age can say that). It was an [...]

September 13, 2020 // 0 Comments

The Truth about Franco/PBS

This PBS documentary on General Franco was thorough enough but you could see it was not made by Ken Burns as it was not nearly as even-handed as his work. The two experts most used were Franco’s biographer Paul Preston, who is resolutely anti-Franco, and the distinguished writer historian Anthony [...]

September 6, 2020 // 0 Comments

The day I finally got “The Boss”

This is another in my occasional series of musical items I have either discovered or returned to in the period since the Covid-19 pandemic began its tiresome journey around the world. Bruce Springsteen needs no introduction – he’s one of the USA’s all-time biggest musical icons and I’m not [...]

August 31, 2020 // 0 Comments

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