Life

Putting the Potatoes In

I’ve had an allotment since November, but I came into possession of it just in time to wind up the year’s efforts and withdraw indoors. I spent some time before Christmas digging over a patch (what turned out to be a small patch in the grand scheme of things) before my next door neighbour turned up with a rotivator. I am lucky enough to have a friend in Julian Cottee (of OxGrow) who furnished me with six chitting potatoes in six exciting varieties: Edzell Blue, British Queen, Isle of Jura, Salad Blue, Maris Bard, and Arran Victory.

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Animals and Documents

A friend asked on Facebook why there were no documents penned by animals. He claimed that ‘not a single one was to my knowledge written by an animal other than a human’. I disagree. Here are some notable quotes I have collected on the subject. ‘A cat could no more write a thesis on the plight of man than a man could on the condition of being a cat’

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First Torchbox Cruise of the Season

My first cruise of the 2012, the first Torchbox cruise of 2012 and the first outing for the new decking. Also check out Louise’s flickr set.

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How to Make Boat Decking

How to make boat decking in 11 easy but detailed steps. 1 : Find a load of scrap timber. Put in on the roof and pace up and down a bit. It is crucial that you stay away from the edges whilst pacing if there is someone else on board. 2 : Remark upon the awkward disposition of the nails. It is important to spare a thought for the craftsman who came before you.

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Mucking about in the Umeå snow

When visiting Umefolk recently we came across a snow castle in the city centre. It would have been impossible not to have a go…

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The end of Umefolk 2012

Play the MP3 and imagine this. I recorded it walking through the musicians.

A weekend festival, with a 25 year heritage and massive following, is drawing to a close. Hundreds and hundreds of people must have passed through its doors. Headliners such as Garmana and Hoven Droven have drawn in crowds, impromptu sessions have brought out nyckelharpa players, and a large variety of players from all over north-east Europe have entertained and captivated. The event is winding up, and on the dance floor Anton and about 30 young people are playing for the final dance…

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Umea and Umefolk

I spent the last week at Umefolk, a folk music festival in Umeå in the north of Sweden. We met Anton Teljebäck, who runs the festival, at a small festival in the UK and he invited us. Umefolk is well established (the first was in 1986), and Anton was keen to spread the word further afield. We are no strangers to Scandanavian music in Oxford. There is a budding session which has found its feet in the last few months, run by Ed Pritchard, who plays a nyckelharpa amongst other things.

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Agency, empathy and the 0736 service to Manchester Piccadilly

I am sorry to announce that the 0736 service to Manchester Piccadilly is delayed by approximately 40 minutes due to engineering works. I am extremely sorry for the severe disruption to the service. Luckily I wasn’t trying to get to Manchester Piccadilly, but from the reaction on the platform someone was. This well-spoken automatic pre-recorded announcement was clear, and told us everything we immediately needed to know. It was spoken courteously in perfect Recieved Pronunciation.

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A snowy journey to work

I’m not normally given to taking photos of my commute, but in the case of the snow I made an exception.

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Old entries from simpler times: Busking

Whilst going over (and deleting) unwanted content on Facebook, I came across a few bits and pieces. I miss busking. Found this old post from 4th August 2007. Day five of ‘my’ Fringe, and the thought police are out in force. It feels like day two to me, but a lot has happened (including a technical rehearsal that finished at midnight, a street urchin and a stand-up routine about health and safety).

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