' projected onto
Martin's wall set to various unlikely bits of music.
Rumours grow of unrest in Russia.
Haunting Air tune set by
someone to an
piece of film taken in San Francisco traffic around 1905.
Though the film is clearly running slowly, can it be slower than 3/4 real time?
See how everything moves at around walking speed, and pedestrians can
calmly pause in the centre of the road to greet each other.
message for us all.
Chris from college gives me some helpful advice about printers. He is now working in
pre-print. He kindly
says this weblog partly inspired
him to start his
own blog. A 'journeyman' is a craft rank in printing. Haven't heard
served as a
of the chapel. Over to Regina's office to talk about the book layout.
Editing, and worrying a bit.
Marc-Henry texts me to say Cristina has had the baby. More
After dark, join Mystery Friend 2 for a quiet drink in the local bondage cellar. Amos,
the owner, and his giant mastiff dog Fidel, take us upstairs to the office so
Mystery Friend can book a spiritual retreat in the Negev Desert.
Printer, printer, out to
who is the fairest of the bunch?
More screenplay, fidgety editing, waiting for
in Britain to give me quotes.
If you're curious what it feels like to be a plate of sushi, it feels
Tuesday. Of all people, George Monbiot breaks years of silence by Britain's press
with demurrage. Late better than never. Meanwhile, rumours of
inside euroland. Both stories via the
of course. Publication thing continues.
Monday. Look for
In case you wondered, this is how to say
Sarkozy in French Sign Language.
Sunday. Slightly worrying
video of shiny women with headlamp eyes, the Sonitus remix giving the sound
more edge and shape at the top & bottom.
Saturday. More work on book publication, and on screenplay with Marc-Henry. A few
days ago I found, in low-resolution .jpg form, some of Giotto's murals from
Assisi of the life of Francis.
one, are particularly lovely.
Friday. I look for new printers. The
team still cannot manage to send me a quote.
Thursday. Last night's chat at Magdolna's was fun. We looked at a book of Tartar
recipes and I urged her to consider
Today, my IP
lady surprises me with a naughty bill.
Some extreme horn playing on
old record. A less musically showy,
More work on screenplay. Talk to
printer, based appropriately enough in Nottingham.
Wake out of very vivid dream about underwater
trams. Am on tram by day, and we know
it will descend over the shoreline into blue ocean, the tracks continuing across the
seabed of a huge bay, dark blue water pressing in on the airtight windows. We emerge
unharmed, the tracks slowly rising out of the water up another coast about 15 minutes
later. 3 or 4 nights in a row now my mother has taken a major role in the dream,
irritatingly sure of herself - from some point in her healthy late 60s, early 70s.
Meet Mystery Friend 2 in the evening.
Online, I encounter a maker of films about peace who has decided to call himself,
yes, Velcrow Ripper.
But I couldn't possibly make fun of a candle in the darkness. That would be horrid.
Sometimes try on rollerblades, and though awkwardly, am slowly progressing towards
wheeliness. I glide around my flat like a drinks trolley on a cross-channel ferry.
Last night got an atmospheric phone text from
describing how he, his children, and one of his
dogs were skating on a nearby lake after dark, doubtless all
chilled by mysterious mist drifting in from the Eurasian steppes. Perhaps I too
shall someday skate.
Small hours start off with some vigorous soul, the
first with quite a neat conceit
to the lyrics, the second
lots of energy & discipline.
After handsome doses of zinc and fish oil, the annoying cold cuts on my fingertips
are starting to heal at last. They were open for over a week: strange. Crisp, chilly weather
continues. Another chat on Skype with Marc-Henry, working on a romantic-comedy screenplay
together. Carry on poking around YouTube.
One group of musicians, so funky they couldn't make up their mind what to
call themselves, in just a few years move from this sweet Northern Soul
to this slightly rowdier
dance track. Then,
2 years later, to this
shambling party sound
[notice the oddly Tyrolean singers in the
centre of the set, doing a kind of square dance in waistcoats & hats with ribbons].
Transition into the 70s complete, they get tighter, snider, and
twangier as they transcend
Carefully catalogued by
Three old party numbers from Betty Davis:
A quiet day in until lesson with Akos, followed by tea & chicken delicacy with Magdolna,
one-time landlady of Heikki. She introduces me to her two cats, Rozi & Mistake,
and her children. We chat about Moscow, dreadful English cuisine, Hungarian girls,
and typography. She has kept the copy of Smeijers'
I lent Heikki safe and sound.
Sheila. Online, Wanda warns me that perhaps only every tenth American
book last year.
Your two videos for today. Black soul & commitment from Ike & Tina in a
splendidly energetic stage
show. Though Ike, glowering in the shadows, seems almost sinister,
I'm not sure we ever heard such sweetness from Ms Turner again once she was rid of
him. Then some white chill & detachment from
accompanied by a back-to-basics non-moving picture.
Quiet day catching up on correspondence. From
this song to
Ms Murphy continues to exploit the take-me-I'm-yours niche. Can it be
coincidence that her best songs are also the ones where someone's at least
tried to rein in her appalling dress sense?
Up late. A mix of thin snow and frost outside. I go out and note that Lupus, the
white shaggy komondor dog, has icicles all over his fur. He bounces around cheerfully,
seemingly untroubled by this. Perhaps being strong, brave, and stupid is not such a
short straw to draw after all. Every branch and twig is picked out with a fur of tiny
white crystals, like the negative of a print. Georgina drives the two girls, Robin & me
to Kecskemet. As we drive down the dusk country road towards the town of Kecskemet, Georgina at
the steering wheel mentions a vision of angels she had a couple of nights ago. She was
unable to sleep because of anxiety, and a group of fiery orange angels hovered around
her soothing her worried forehead with tiny cool hands.
After dark, Robin & I take an overheated train into Budapest,
stomachs rumbling because MAV
decides again not to bother giving the train a restaurant car.
Around lunchtime, I wake up in the library, get up, go next door, and find I have
been inadvertantly locked into the darkened sitting room, with cushions blocking
the barred windows and lit only by a string of white fairy lights framing the door. I
knock but no-one can hear me. Since I very much want to urinate, I think over what
my options are, and send a phone text to both Robin & Zsuzsa explaining my situation.
After a few minutes Georgina unlocks the door, neither of my messages having reached
anyone. She explains that she locked me into the sitting room because she needed to
go out to get some honey.
Over lunch, as we gaze at the tablemats in
kitchen depicting Victorian engravings
of places round the world, he suggests we organise a holiday to visit his tablemats.
A couple are parts of China and India with memorable rock formations towering over
bays. He points out that those bits of terrain probably still look like that,
and the challenge would be to find and stand in the position of the person who did the
original drawing. I mention to Robin, that when I was keen to piss and locked into his
sitting room, I considered urinating into the fireplace. He remarks this would have
been a perfectly reasonable move, and it strikes me that since I have bought a couple
of Robin's works, this would have reversed the famous fireplace piss that established
Jackson Pollock as a daring enfant terrible of post-war art. Instead of, as in Pollock's
case, a drunken artist urinating [to their delight] in the fireplace of a couple of
pious art collectors, it would have been a sober art collector urinating in the fireplace
of an artist. Spend afternoon and evening working with Robin on a logo for a cricket team
he plays for. Towards midnight a strange chilly mist drops down around the house. I go
out to look at it, and it just hangs there in the air, silent, like a curtain.
Wake up in Robin's library to bright, chilly sun. Get to the end of
Rosicrucian Enlightenment' by Frances Yates. Her thesis is as
bold as it is carefully argued. 1) The Rosicrucian manifestos of the early 17th century
were calls for a fusion of ecumenical Christianity with systematic study of nature,
not literal descriptions of a secret society. 2) The Rosicrucian furore these pamphlets
caused had a specific political edge, namely to arouse support for a Protestant
alliance centred on the Bohemian court of England's Princess Elizabeth and Frederick,
The Elector Palatine, rapidly crushed and driven underground in Europe
after defeat by Catholic Habsburg troops at the Battle of White Mountain
in 1620. 3) The careful manoeuvring that led to the 'Invisible College' of England's
1640s, and then the Royal Society in the 1660s, the world's first association for
rigorous, scientific study of nature, cannot be fully understood without following
the esoteric currents around men like Francis Bacon, Rene Descartes, Isaac Newton.
4) After studying
the German Rosicrucians and alchemists linked to the short-lived Palatine court,
Yates gives John Dee, Philip Sidney, Giordano Bruno central roles in Continental
hermetic, and hence scientific and religious, thought, influencing developments
even up to a century after the end of Elizabethan England. Interesting and persuasive
side suggestions emerge. Perhaps Freemasonry was an attempt to rise to the challenge
of the Rosicrucian pamphlets. Perhaps cordial relations kept up between the widowed Princess
Elizabeth, James I's daughter, in Holland during the 1640s and 50s, with both Royalist
and Parliamentarian sides in England's Civil War, help to explain the mystery of how smoothly
and easily James I's grandson Charles II was able to return to
England's throne after the interregnum. Perhaps
the antiquarian Elias Ashmole was a more typical founding Royal Society member than historians
have hitherto thought. Perhaps the strongly materialistic character of 17th & 18th
century science was a deliberate attempt to hide politically dangerous occultist
sympathies among the early natural philosophers. Perhaps, as early pro-Rosicrucian
authors warned it might, this materialist slant caused long-term harm.
With the supportive online presence of the Nigel of Darkness, I set up his
Delphi-built back-end uploader for Robin's
new website, sort out
some small glitches, and show him how to upload new images.
Mark Griffith, site administrator /
markgriffith at yahoo.com
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