people seem to have been locked up for complaining. Scroll down page.
Wednesday. The sexual-molestation
claims against Woody Allen - a balanced overview which rewards careful reading.
Tuesday. Wake to one of those snowfalls which pile up on parked
cars but melt on the road. Nicely-researched piece on Voltaire's still-controversial
play about Mohammad.
Monday. Rising in the middle of the night, carefully carrying my headcold to the
bathroom like a bowl of hot soup, I suddenly notice how many tiny lights are on
when all the proper lights are off. The little Hello-I'm-still-here signals from
all my electronic servants. An orange lamp set into the extension socket board, a
tiny green dot as my electric shaver recharges, winking green & orange lights on the old
laptop, a pulsing white lamp on the newer laptop, another green dot from the jack into it,
a steady blue lamp in the old laptop's transformer, a winking blue light in the new
laptop's dongle, some orange numerals glowing quite stridently from the water heater.
I wonder if these silent throbbing electric fields creep into our dreams somehow?
Interesting article about domestic
servants in fact, fiction, and among writers by an Irish writer living in Sri Lanka.
Sunday. Review of a book by Morrissey the Moping Mancunian.
Saturday. Slight corrective to the widespread
Friday. British bank stops people withdrawing their own money.
Thursday. I get yet more jigsaw ideas while teaching Psychology Eszter. Not this, but it looks fun too.
Wednesday. For once, a worthwhile article. New physics theory of why there's life.
Tuesday. Suspected US airport thieves arrested after 30 years. Known Belgian freeloader killed after 100 meals.
Monday. Akos tells me about his new job. Apparently Facebook is like a disease.
Sunday. The BBC finally notices the sunspot shortage that The Register was talking about in the summer of 2011, so two and a half years ago.
Saturday. Weekend of toil on various arcane projects.
Friday. Haircut with Istvan in the early evening. Vinyl records back again, again?
Thursday. During lesson with Psychology Eszter at the three-legged coffee bar, I invent a new kind of jigsaw puzzle on a paper napkin while explaining to her that she needs to find her schtick to avoid becoming a commodity in her profession. Later on meet Mr Saracco, his visiting friend Daniel, along with Jim at the Goethe Institut cafe venue. We hear more about one of Mr Saracco's buildings that exploded on Monday morning.
Wednesday. Sleep from 8am to 5pm after working all last night on a deadline. Dynamic times, citizens.
A short list-style review of ten sci-fi books about hive minds - for Our Name is Legion.
Tuesday. They're painting and decorating the old communist-era cars at the arcade in strange ways now. It is only four now. Was it ever six? A new machine offers to make people healthy organic burgers without the involvement of any scruffy humans.
Monday. Slightly naughty monologue by Romania.
Sunday. A small enclosure appears in the mall. It contains four small old communist-era cars, two Trabants and two Wartburgs (or was it 6 that first day, 3 and 3?) I think. Two are a tired white colour, two that weary pale-grey oatmeal/putty colour so many of them were painted. The mall obviously still trying to stage interesting events. Have forgotten which day it was, but for just one day in the run up to Christmas there were two curious stands up near my end of the plaza. A lad of around 25 dressed as a wizard presiding over a table of four classic match puzzles, laid out to be solved with giant mock matches the size of large pencils, and on a floor area next to him about 10' x 10' red-painted wooden strip surrounds a bed of hay and carpentry shavings. In this there were two young deer, one with antlers. 5 or 6 awe-struck toddlers waited in thrilled silence for permission to stroke the deer.
Saturday. Very enjoyable curry with Zoe & Mark. We speak of cabbages and kings, and many other things. In one anecdote, Zoe relates how she asked her father - during a time when she was sharing his train into London three times a week - why he never spoke to the other men on the same platform and train every day. From a great height he replies sternly, using her nickname, "Thin end of the wedge, Bear."
Meanwhile, a man with a thrusting powerful accent tells us that mobile phones really do cause health problems. I've long kept them at arm's length, hee hee!
Friday. Harsh but fair. Why everyone wants "to be a writer". At some point this week, I think Wednesday, Christmas trees were removed from the shopping centre. They were still there on Tuesday morning. In the evening, a lovely dinner at Terri's.
Thursday. Feminist discovers the fashion industry wasn't men defining women after all, but women entrepreneurs responding to their female customers. This seems to come as quite a surprise. Notice the moment when the excited author tells us that Elizabeth Arden, Helena Rubinstein, and Estee Lauder were the names of real people! Not to be Europeanist about this, a British woman sues her own lawyers for not explaining that getting divorced would entail her no longer being married.
Wednesday. Valley Boy discovers Ortega. 1929?? Whoah, historic. Meanwhile, in other developments, some American's ex-wife "pulls out" a gun - of course during a quarrel about aliens.
Tuesday. Out to Buda hills to teach Zizi, and am urged to stay for fireside drinks with an interesting schoolfriend of Mr B.
Monday. Supposedly, this diagram shows the most controversial topics on Wikipedia. I like the way "homeopathy" and "jesus" jostle for position at the very centre.
Sunday. Amusing article from a philosopher who is (we can sympathise) fairly unconvinced that the cosmos is actually made of mathematics.
Saturday. Train back to Budapest. I find that the wall socket at one end of each "Intercity" coach works. Perhaps it's sad this comes from arrogant young bankers at Goldman Sachs, but a lot of this hard-edged advice about life (whether it's genuinely from them or not) is really quite sound.
Friday. Late-night chats with Robin & Constantine. Another view of current
Ukrainian street protests.
How Britain in the 1940s tackled Zionist & Irish terrorism in alliance: article has interesting detail. And an American woman makes heartfelt plea in classified ad for man she met two nights ago to get back in touch, even though he urinated on her.
"You peed on me but it's OK!" Sweet.
Thursday. Balla & his sweet 8-year-old daughter Maja come to Robin's for lunch along with his designer friend Renata. Robin and children organise with the help of Constantine, just down from Budapest this morning, a most impressive lunch of mutton with wine & all sorts of Christmassy fare.
Wednesday. Robin, Bela Grant, and I welcome in the new year with a midnight snack of fried egg, gherkin, bread & butter, plus spiced sausage. Wake this morning feeling empowered & clearheaded. One of Robin's five surviving ewes gives birth to twin lambs, perhaps a good omen for 2014.
Before Christmas passes, here's an interesting historical episode: a skilful army of Native Americans and escaped Negro slaves defending Florida from the USA on Christmas Day, 1837.
Mark Griffith, site administrator /
markgriffith at yahoo.com