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2009
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October 31st; Dinner party at Martin's. Intriguing mix of dinner guests for Martin's excellent cooking. This includes: a girl who works for a company affiliated to Desire{e}/Bill, the cross-dressing fugitive from the US Food & Drug Administration who makes porn films, but no longer runs a nightclub; an American fellow who warns us that the US government is breeding Dr-Moreau-type half-pig half-goose genetic monstrosities in a secret experimental station on Plum Island in order to create new strains of bird flu & pig flu - he is marketing a brand of beer made only from barley found inside crop circles; and a cheerful girl who insists on calling the FBI the FHB and talks across other people on random topics rather like a Soviet jamming transmitter. We eat a lovely appetiser, wonderful soup, a tasty meat course, and a divine, alcohol-drenched chocolate pudding. Projected on Martin's wall meanwhile, an old black-and-white secret-police instructional video from the 1960s explains how to bug dissidents, how to search apartments & people thoroughly, and how to confidentially pass messages to other agents.
October 30th; Drinks in a smoky bar with Mystery Friend 2 & Edith & Anonymous Slav, who says at one point, of the part of Switzerland she lives in, "I believe that my canton is the centre of all evil in Europe."

October 29th; Sunspot 1029, this year's biggest, looking fierce in this wonderful photograph taken by Pete Lawrence. These 2 photos are by Lecoq Etienne, showing the now larger sunspot, "about the size of Earth". A close-up from Gianluca Valentini, and a shot with Earth added for size comparison by Dave Gradwell, all via this site. Meanwhile: Think I'm in Love {though it makes me kind of nervous to say so}. Good use of Random Bloke in Background, unless he's some famous bluesman I'm supposed to recognise in my sleep.
October 28th; Serious day. Work & prepare for travel. Glue holds in position for half the bookshelves. Straighten edges of rust stripe on table top. Cut up photocopies into small rectangles that stick exactly on top of each of 18 business cards. The usual.

October 27th; Find some real rice paper, the kind you can eat. Then to an Internations event, where Nicolas the Life Coach, genial Rohit, smouldering Tunde, and many others, meet & drink. Soap Opera Story Planner introduces me to Zsu, an editor on the show. She demands a clear breakdown from me on the precise appeal of Hungarian girls to foreign men.
October 26th; Find rice paper that is really just decorative paper, not actually edible, though I nibble some outside the stationer's to be sure. Meet Magdolna for a rather good East-Mediterranean salad in a place with walls covered in Hebrew newspaper pages.

October 25th; Surprisingly eventful Sunday. Finish some editing for Zsofi at the Hungarian Quarterly. At the gym afterwards I'm surprised to see Fitness Mariann hunched in the reception area, glowering at the carpet, apparently being debriefed by her boyfriend/trainer after yesterday's event. The atmosphere is so grim & serious it's clear she didn't do well. I get on with my own session in the weights cellar. Some time later, I come upstairs for some bottled water. She's still wearing the eyelash centipedes, but now a tracksuit top partly unzipped. I notice a bit of ribbon poking out of the zip in the three Hungarian colours: red, white, green. Thinking she might have got somewhere in something after all, I ask encouragingly if she had some results yesterday? She sulkily mutters yes. I ask what? Still looking down and avoiding my eyes, she irritably admits she came top in the national event. She seems so angry I daren't press her for more details.
The clocks moved again today, the bastards.
Neighbour Katalin, after we met in the lift last week, pops round with some schnapps from her home, Kiskoros. She is a bubbly girl and seems remarkably cheerful & proud about coming from this undoubtably blameless small town near Kecskemet. We chat & have some more schnapps then some tea, then compare flats, since she lives right next door. She is very kind about my Hungarian, while affably correcting my mistakes, which is going to be useful practice if we can keep this up. As she leaves, It is later than I thought, I check my phone, and I find I left it switched off all day. I switch it on, and receive a variety of messages {including a completely missed lunch invitation from someone}. It's now clear that I'm exactly an hour late for dinner at Magdolna's. I rush over, and there meet Gabor, Peter, Heikki, Aline, and an agitated & long-suffering Magdolna who is really very reasonable about me being 80 minutes late for dinner.
After several days with no sunspots, a new system, 1029, has emerged just since Friday. A space weather website explains helpfully: "The sunspot's magnetic polarity identifies it as a member of new Solar Cycle 24. If its growth continues apace, sunspot 1029 could soon become the biggest sunspot of 2009. Readers with solar telescopes are encouraged to monitor developments." The insistent, even relentless or oppressive, sound of a Seamus Haji mix. Overpowered {Roisin Murphy} / Feel the Vibe {Axwell} / Freek U {Bon Garcon}.
October 24th; Saturday. Wake out of a vivid fantasy where I am asleep in my dream {what Jake was trying to get us to do in his dream-group masterclass years ago} and a girl is waking me up with a gentle kiss on the lips, some of her hair softly brushing against my cheek. So I wake up twice over, as it were. Perhaps Cake Fragrance Madness affects all who breathe air heavy with honeyed lemon. Another visit to Vodafone, so get closer to the end of the George Eliot book. An employee called Roland tells me he can help with their modem but "he does not help" with my 2 laptops not receiving internet. I should go to service centres for the computers. I point out that computer service centres say the real problem is the Vodafone modem, so he partly relents. Roland refuses to tackle the wireless connection dropping on my Apple, but helpfully gets the PC laptop & modem co-operating with each other again. I drop by the helpful Apple showroom to see about the other laptop, and the assistant there in English calls the Huawei modem device that Vodafone & T-Mobile both use "I am sorry to say like this but a piece of junk and the software in it another piece of junk". We smile & nod for a moment. Then he suggests Pannon might have a better modem, adding significantly that no customer ever brings him a Pannon modem saying it won't work with an Apple Mac.
Meanwhile, perhaps the most important news of 2009: Germany's High Court outlaws electronic voting.

October 23rd; Tank Friday. Back at the gym, Fitness Mariann simmers behind the counter, glaring steadily at an almost-full bottle of drinking water. The bad mood might partly come from having only drunk one glass of water all day. She cannot drink, she explains, because she is on a low-fluid regimen before tomorrow's weigh-in at some kind of national girl-fitness contest. She has also transformed herself from gloomy cute girl into slightly unnerving vamp. She does this with some bronze-coloured eyeshadow on the eyelids giving them a metallic appearance, two false upper lashes that bristle alarmingly like tropical centipedes, an all-over tan, and an all-black figure-hugging outfit. This has one of those very broad black belts that on a slim-enough girl accentuate the slenderness by sitting on the hipbones. Not what I'd have recommended, but all works quite well on her - she must be psyching herself into a state of competition anger. Either that or proving a point to someone. She seems incredulous that I went to find her potting studio last weekend. She blinks in disbelief as if suddenly confused as to whether I am pretending or.... Dear God, actually interested in her ceramics classes?
A song called 'Honey' by Tosca. Though the singer seems to say "I want my money" this might just be my jaundiced ear. Strangely appropriate soundtrack for sinking a candle-heated skewer through 20mm sandwiches of transparent plastic. Drinks with Mystery Friend 2, Exotic Girl, Tamas & Katalin. Once the first two have gone home, it's the small hours, and we remaining three are in a heroically dingy & smoky cellar bar {where I bump into Mary and briefly meet her girlfriends from Ireland}. This is when the two Hungarians get down to business and turn the conversation to a thorough discussion of lesbianism. Tamas disapproves of Sapphic sisterhood, seeing lesbians as women who no longer need us men, while Katalin - she finds it all ....fairly natural & unworrying. Probably the moment to revisit 'Then There's Her' by Swayzak.
October 22nd; Thursday. Go to meet Magdolna in the early evening, though she is stuck in a traffic jam so her son makes me some mint tea. We have little time to talk about her time with Heikki in Geneva before I go on to Mystery Friend 2 for dinner. Martin is there with a friend. Mystery Friend 2's startlingly pretty & quick-witted weekend guest Exotic Girl is something of a surprise. I briefly appal everyone by suggesting it is corrupt for net recipients of government spending to have the same vote as net taxpayers, but MF2 reminds us that "German women are essentially Nazis who feel they lack lebensraum, so want to associate themselves sexually with the victors of the last war." The conservative American satirist P.J. O'Rourke, he adds, was not upset about being derided as a Nazi because, in O'Rourke's words "No woman ever dreamt of being raped by a man dressed as a liberal."

October 21st; Wednesday. Catch train out to Vac, then a bus ride on from there to a village halfway to Miskolc. Stephen Z picks me up. We go back to his, meet his 2 cats, his horse, and his energetic & affectionate half-Puli dog. He cooks a lovely lunch with salad from the garden, then we look round his studio and his greenhouse before having a long chat in front of his wood stove. As we leave to catch my bus back to Vac, I forget to borrow one of his iron keys.
October 20th; Tuesday. Begin to accomplish things with the bookcase. Now I've smoothed down the sharp cut ends of the 10" steel rods with sandpaper, the whole thing is starting to take shape. At dinner, Mystery Friend 2 urges me again to read Peter Oborne's disturbing book on Britain's new class of professional politicians.

October 19th; Monday. Go into Vodafone with partial success. The novel Marion gave me is turning into my queuing-at-Vodafone reading. The last 200 pages have all been read while waiting for my number to come up on visits to Vodafone customer service. Back in my flat, I have used so many lemons bleaching parts of the tabletop, and furniture wax on top, I thought I might as well say to hell with it and rub in cinnamon & cloves as well. As a result, a thick, overpowering aroma of spiced honey & lemon now hits me each time I leave my bedroom. Entering the main room of my flat is now like climbing inside a giant cake.
October 18th; Sunday. Day off the internet after both laptops crashed at the same time yesterday. About three days ago, I realised that the large translucent plastic lid {3' x 18"} seemingly tightly sealing the topmost of three boxes of my clothes out on the balcony, had vanished some time in the previous few days. The boxes were a gift from Martin some months back. It must have been ripped off in a gust of wind, and whizzed down into the street at an angle like a huge oblong frisbee. I wonder if it hit anyone in the head? Gone now, squirreled away somewhere within minutes of landing. Koop's tune 'Relaxing at Club Fusion'.

October 17th; Saturday. One tram stop from the Medical 'University', I find what I'm sure is the "grey door" Mariann 2 said led to the cellar workshop for her potting classes, right next to the old building painted a green cake-icing colour. I'd have called the grey door a corrugated metal door, and it's locked today, but I'm pretty sure this is the right place.
Last night I read the short book Martin kindly lent me, called 'Letter to a Christian Nation' by Sam Harris. A bit disappointing, as I should probably have guessed from the effusive introduction by Richard Dawkins. Harris, in short clear sentences, addresses the Biblical literalists that intelligent Americans are understandably so embarrassed to share their nationality with, and tells them why they are wrong. Harris does not quite say, as Dawkins does elsewhere, that other more moderate Christians are evasive & dishonest because you are either literal-minded or you have no mind, but it is hard not to feel that both men are only really comfortable tackling people who completely lack subtlety. Telling creationists what they believe is false should be about as close to shooting fish in a barrel as you can get, but Harris makes quite a meal of it. The argument is twofold: the Bible is an immoral book that contains lots of nasty ethical demands {enslave people, stone them to death, and so on}, and the Bible is a factually untrue book. Therefore it is downright scary for the rest of us that millions of Americans seem genuinely convinced that the world is only 6,000 years old or whatever, and that these same Americans feel uniquely empowered and morally righteous, on the basis of not having read very much of the Good Book, and having understood even less of it. So far so good. Just this afternoon, I pass a poster on the platform of some metro station advertising these people, whoever they are. They cheekily give themselves a URL that means 'Research Centre', and slogans reading 'Farewell to Darwin', and 'People, we are not animals!'. Clearly, there is a problem then. However, I see no evidence that Harris {or Dawkins ....perhaps Hitchens will surprise me} have any understanding of what that problem is. To start with, Harris seems to genuinely believe that organised religions are at the basis of many wars {rather than, as they might be, tribal markers which could, and would, be substituted for by other group identities}. Another possibility that seems not to occur to him is that literal belief in your own traditional religious dogma might be a good indicator of the same kind of stupidity and lack of knowledge of other cultures that causes wars, and hence not a cause of war, but an effect in common with war of something deeper. Rather he seems to share with Dean Swift the view that groups of people who fight to the death centuries after the murder of Ali {Sunni versus Shia} or the break with Rome {Catholic versus Protestant}, etc really are engaged in absurd wars purely motivated by details of doctrine. For religious dogma to be the real driver, a satirical metaphor like Swift's crass Big-Enders-versus-Little-Enders dispute in Gulliver {a war over which end of the boiled egg to crack open} would be spot on. This is a bizarre belief. It actually qualifies as a more primitive analysis than the Marxist view that all religious disputes are really economic disputes in disguise, and that's primitive. Clearly some combatants see it that way, just as some are acting out the Marxist cartoon of human history, and still others are following some other very basic script. But to actually believe that a world without religious dogma is (1) achievable, and (2) would have less war in it than now, might well be a more dangerous delusion than any of America's redneck evangelical delusions, and that's saying something. Even if it only equals the dangerousness of Biblical literalists' belief in a rapture into heaven or a second coming of whichever Messiah, it's almost as naive. Harris has a couple of things in common with Swift. Both men are quite clever, but not very clever, and are prone to judge other people, as is the university habit, on their remarks & beliefs rather than on what they do. Therefore, someone who glances at their newspaper horoscope each morning, with its silly implausible platitudes about being careful with money, meeting interesting strangers, or finding an opportunity at work, must be mad or retarded, and we should be alarmed if this person is going to perform a medical operation on us or prepare our tax accounts. The fact that many very skilled surgeons and accountants do have odd habits like reading their horoscopes, or attending a church service, or filling in a lottery coupon with a superstitious system of their own devising they secretly know cannot possibly make sense, seems a tough one for people like Harris to grasp. His real target, the fundamentalists, are - it seems to me - people who have embraced the literal-mindedness & materialism of his outlook and that of the 18th century in general, and applied it maniacally to their own incoherent hopes & emotions about the sacred & mystical. Sociologists who study terrorists have noted that religious fundamentalism is a surprisingly modern, post-18th-century phenomenon, and that many religious fundamentalists are "intelligent, educated" people. What they mean by that phrase is people with medical degrees, chemistry degrees, engineering degrees, which largely means people who have memorised a lot of stuff, and have been drilled in a very restricted set of ways to think about that stuff. I've met a good number of people with university qualifications who've never had an original thought in their lives, and who specifically got those qualifications by uncritically doing what they were told to do throughout their most formative years. A small number of graduates are bright and can think outside their box, but if you are surprised that the average university graduate in a science subject makes a good suicide bomber, your eyes have not been very open. Harris's own philosophy degree seems to have left him believing something not far off vulgar logical positivism: page 64, 65 "It is time we acknowledged a basic feature of human discourse: when considering the truth of a proposition, one is either engaged in an honest appraisal of the evidence and the logical arguments, or one isn't." Sounding a bit like Strawson at his most smug, Harris breezily rules out doubt, vagueness, the murky merging of evidence with the theories that frame and select it. No wonder he is so secure arguing with creationists. They are opponents who have embraced the flatminded materialism of the Vienna Circle, and have chosen to think just like him, only the other way round. Of course, someone who dogmatically asserts what we're almost certain is true looks less daft than someone who dogmatically asserts what we're almost certain is false, but they're both passengers in any real intellectual venture. So here we are, almost a hundred years after Russell's attacks on religion, and his demands that people be intellectually consistent. Some people who find their religious badge comforting & familiar have risen to the challenge. They've become intellectually consistent - by framing their religious views literally, and adjusting everything else in their worldview to fit, all the way to looking quite barmy. Anything rather than be inconsistent, right?
The idea that the shrillness and manic self-certitude of American hick Christianity is in large part based on a defiant reversal of their sense of social inferiority and on the insistence by others that they are deluded seems to have also never crossed Harris's mind. Instead he sees himself as part of the cure, telling creationists that their holy book has no up-to-date mathematics in it, as if that's going to persuade anyone. Of course, crime, war, sex drive & religious passion all increase measurably with distance from the poles, but he hasn't noticed this either. Presumably he thinks that if the ranting proles of Alabama could be cured of their religious obsessions they would start to behave just like Swedes or Canadians?
Of course, adopting his values for a moment {"either something is true or it isn't"}, the sentence at the top of page 65 {"either one is engaged in an honest appraisal of the evidence and the logical arguments, or one isn't."} is also just false. A brief review of human activities from judging a painting or piece of music or a woman's looks {evidence?}, interpreting a legal rule in a tricky case {if that discussion is comprised of only evidence and logic, why are there always disagreements, and why can we often not conclusively show which views are wrong and which are right?}, a woman deciding if she is really in love or just fond of someone {logical arguments?}, deciding if a joke is funny, the list goes on... will show anyone this who thinks for a minute. Even Austin & Wittgenstein both managed to get this far past the threadbare proposition model of human discourse some years before 1950. Then on page 43 we have: "I know of no society in human history that ever suffered because its people became too desirous of evidence in support of their core beliefs." Aside from the lovely pre-war phrase "too desirous of evidence" which strengthens my hunches about exactly who was on his reading list at Stanford, this bland profession of ignorance needs a little translating. If we just substitute a term like "crisis of confidence" or "excessive caution", the examples literally tumble into view. Very arguably, Britain is a society now suffering because it is too desirous of evidence in support of its core beliefs. Given Harris's touching affection for the Jainists & their manful commitment to non-harming, {such as taking trouble not to inhale insects by wearing a mouth veil - he wisely doesn't explain how their very consistent beliefs are so demanding that much of Jainist practice is delegated to monks, at one extreme the naked "sky-clad" monks, who must live only by begging, and can only own a wooden bowl for food, but no clothing} they too are a rather obvious example. They are an austere and interesting sect driven into near insignificance in their native India - possibly because they just aren't assertive enough about their beliefs. Likewise Buddhism, much admired in the West and the Far East, but almost vanished in India, its country of origin. In fact every culture that has ever gone into decline has as part of that decline started to doubt its own core beliefs, some of which were irrational and evidence-free all along, but only noticed as such once the culture is already fading and on the way out. As for individuals, any lover or military commander knows well that in some cases no decision is actually worse than a bad decision, and that many vital decisions must be taken without any evidence at all, for or against. This is because many of the challenges of life take place in real time without rehearsal and with no chance of a rerun. All this science-centric, emotion-free appraising of evidence with reasoned argument, as a philosophy of life is just ridiculous. Most ordinary people undamaged by extended rote-education can see this at once. This book confirms my slowly growing perception of the United States as profoundly provincial. Encouraged by its own confidence, this is a country which has amassed huge wealth & knowledge through the dogged energy and honest thrift of provincial Britons and Germanic Continentals, thrillingly set free from all depth and nuance.
October 16th; Friday. Lunch with Martin at a stall deep in the maze of alleys that is the Chinese market. Turns out we pick a surprisingly good stall - and Martin knows what to ask for. I take him round the big Chinese supermarket over the road, and he recognises all sorts of Chinese & Japanese food that are just strange, meaningless wrappers and jars to me. Back at his place we have a coffee and an intriguing soft white sweetmeat from Japan made from pounded rice dough that we found at the supermarket. At the gym later on, I ask Fitness Mariann at the counter how her new course {the 3rd course now} is coming on. She shows me 2 photos on her mobile phone of a large clay dish perhaps for fruit, before and after she cut a very precise grille of pierced curved holes in the sides of the soft clay. It's a very accomplished piece of careful work, and this is after six pottery classes. Perhaps she's found the right course at last. But she shows me these pictures with a strange kind of sullen defiance. What have I done wrong? Offering to help her with her homework during the two weeks she was on a finance course? Asking her out a couple of times? Odd. Maybe just tired - I ask about paying to use the kiln, and she gives me directions to the cellar studio with a grey door, saying she's sure outsiders can pay for use of the kiln, but she's not sure if the potter's wheel can also be hired outside lesson times.

October 15th; Thursday. Stylish trailer for Modesty Blaise.
October 14th; Learn more about how Twitter works.

October 13th; Infuriating non-stop rain of yesterday replaced by dry, chilly, cleansing wind. Cross Danube, find Alvi's office in Buda, give back OSX 10.5 disc, buy a drill, look in antique shops for an iron key. At corner of Margit korut and Bem Jozsef street powerful mood suddenly hits me. There is late afternoon to my left, tinges of acid yellow sunset in the sky above the buildings, and early evening to my right, that end of the sky a dark plasticine grey that makes the rooftops luminous in contrast. A gust of cold wind slams into me, trying to rip my coat off. The poignancy of autumn and bittersweet passing time washes over me - a strange, almost refreshing emotion. A kind of puzzled ecstasy tugs at my heart for a solid ten minutes. Adding the two sides of the river together, I walk past at least eight opticians over the next half hour. Now what's that all about? as they say in London. Talking of London, Little_Lawyer alerts me to Charon QC, and his coverage of yet another step down for Britain's House of Commons as a place that matters. It seems a UK newspaper has been gagged by a court injunction from reporting on a Parliamentary question, who asked it, of which minister, on which topic, or why. At least we can see MPs & what ties they're wearing on the television screen though. Which is what really matters, isn't it?
The Facebook group for my book publishing imprint is starting to pick up numbers. Becoming urgent to reach the people who still read.
October 12th; Tea x2 with Franc. Tim, a lucky type, notices an article by a psychologist about learning to become lucky. Partly about learning to look around and notice things, the research says.

October 11th; Tim drops by, kindly bringing some boltcutters, a whizzy industrial saw, and the cheerful little tot, his youngest. While Florence admires my green fluffy crocodile and four-foot-long blow-up aeroplane, Tim out on the balcony quickly saws the 5mm-thick rod down to roughly 10-inch lengths, donning my tacky mirrored sunglasses for eye protection. We repair to the Turkish restaurant to celebrate.
October 10th; Rise late. Grey rainy skies. After dark, to Birthday Party 2, another event hosted by Nicolas The Life Coach to continue the merriment. There I meet an Englishman who is one of the five story planners who drive the plot forward for Hungary's most successful soap opera. Intriguing to hear that this work is all done in English under an Australian editor, and five story planners each design a day a week with two other editors, which then gets turned into Hungarian script. It's all about the emotion, he explains.

October 9th; Complicated & successful day. Ends by meeting Inese & Tiina for dinner at the Slovak restaurant, with the idea that we will go from there to join Nicolas The Life Coach for his birthday party in a nearby club. However, we get reports that a crowd of football supporters has packed out the club, and slowly Inese, Tiina, their colleague Bella & I are joined by other people. We phone & text Nicolas every hour or so, making our group a kind of Rosencrantz & Guildernstern parallel party that somehow has to stay separate from the main grouping in case we explode on contact. We go to several night clubs, growing in size but never quite coming across Nicolas & the main set of revellers. I recall years ago once saying to Timon, Cressida's brother, that Cambridge gave you the haunting feeling that the most fabulous party ever was happening just a couple of streets away if only you knew which direction to walk. I can still see Timon smiling oddly for a second and then saying "Ah yes... the 1960s were rather like that."
October 8th; Repulsive dreams, but superb day. Back when hepcats were hepcats, the Graham Bond Organisation from the superbly named 'Gonks Go Beat'. Judging from these clips, a film so wonderfully strange we should all see it immediately.

October 7th; Troubled dreams, but awake refreshed.
October 6th; Dark & polished: 'Drink to Get Drunk'.

October 5th; Put colours in website. Needs work.
October 4th; Short day today since last night stayed up reading a novel manuscript by a friend. Might have 1 or 2 quibbles, but it must be compelling to keep me reading to the last page at 6am. Some rather bleached-out concert film from an open-air event, yes, forty years ago, 1969. During a brief bit of optimism and drive before they ran out of chords, Grand Funk Railroad getting it just right with 'Are You Ready?'. Footage of the audience now much more interesting than the performers on stage: check the Jackie Kennedy lookalike at 1:37. Three decades later, and the mood had wearied somewhat. Portishead deliver on their promise for once with an effectively eerie 1997 video for All Mine. But when you're so mannered you put fake Italian subtitles in the middle to make your retro film more intriguingly weird, it's safe to say the innocence is lost. The little girl mouthing the lyrics, Michelle Montgomery, gets credited at the end with orchestra & others.

October 3rd; Franc pops over for tea & cakes, and admires my table-top & the steel rod destined for the bookcase-to-be.
October 2nd; American singer tries to say something interesting without compromising his inarticulacy: often a touching sight. Citizen Cope and 'Fame' - given a slideshow that also strains to speak. Look out for man in shorts in kitchen with glass of wine.

October 1st; Bring table-top in off balcony, scrape, wash & wax it. Clean balcony. Make order in my room {as, long ago, Dorisz used to say in her wonderfully formal English}. Cut the odd half-inch ends of steel rod down so as to have ten pieces all the same length, about 149 centimetres each. The kind man at the warehouse yesterday used a boltcutter to snip each of the five 3-metre lengths in half {though not too exactly} so enabling me to carry the rod on public transport without looking like a situationist. However, cutting through ten 5mm steel rods with a 15-shilling saw is rather slow work, citizens. In my defence, took the rod to a hardware shop, showed it to a dolt in overalls, and he presented me with this blade, assuring me it would be just the job. Just can't get the staff any more.

Mark Griffith, site administrator / markgriffith at yahoo.com

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