Thursday, 23 September 2010

Random Thursday

Posted by Tania Kindersley.

Thoughts are blowing in and out of my head like autumn leaves. Here are some of them.

1. Why I love the blogosphere.

I'm always banging on about this, but that is because the bloggers and readers of blogs insist on going on being delightful. Yesterday, I suffered mild angst after putting up a post about going out to lunch. I thought afterwards that it risked looking a bit swanky: look at me with my lah-di-dah pheasant and my bouquets of flowers. I think there is a fine line between sharing the joy and doing the existential equivalent of jazz hands. I need not have worried. You heavenly readers left kind and reassuring comments. At the same time, you were making thoughtful and interesting remarks on my slightly left field legalise drugs post. I like very much that sweet peas and drug policy can co-exist in one unlikely space.


2. One of my prejudices confirmed.

I don't know if this is quite a prejudice, but I have always been slightly cross about the tottering about in vertiginous heels thing. I say this with some demur, since I know some of you adore your shoes. I wear flats or kitten heels, because anything over two inches makes my feet hurt, and I cannot be interesting if I am in pain. I like to be able to discuss geo-politics and make jokes when I am out, rather than obsess about my agonising arches. I suspect that some women simply have a higher pain threshold than I, but my feminist side still worries about women torturing their feet in the name of fashion or sexiness or whatever else it might be. A new study shows that men do not notice. I think this reflects very well on the fellows, who clearly have more important things on their collective mind than Jimmy Choos. It also means that I can go on slobbing about in my Converse All Stars with impunity. I am slightly uncertain where it leaves the trannies and the lesbians, but I hope someone is studying that too.

3.  In which I have an unlikely new heroine.

I have never had any interest in Lady Gaga. Sarah once made me watch one of her videos, which appeared to be one long product placement. I felt very old and uncomprehending. But lately she has come storming out in support of the benighted gays in the American military, whom the Senate is bent on tormenting. She says that the great American value of equality under the law must apply to all Americans. I wonder how the great defenders of the Constitution square that circle in their own minds.

(My mother will be going: 'Lady Who?' and wondering if she has a nice Georgian house in Oxfordshire.)

See some of the Gaga goodness here.

Also, my enduring love for Rachel Maddow grows deeper with each passing day. If you have half an hour I recommend going to her website and watching all the reports she has done this week, since she is on an absolute tear just now. But if you only have time for one, this is the best.


4. Thing that made me laugh the most today.


This, from the always lovely India Knight's Posterous page:

Lord Pembroke's Letter

It came via Letters of Note.


5. Thing I have been meaning to tell you.

The swallows finally left for Africa. Their departure was late this year. About ten days ago, they did one final majestic muster over my chimney pots, and then they were gone. It is of course the official declaration of autumn, but although it is rather dank today, and the odd leaf is turning, the hips are growing hippish, I do not yet quite feel it. There is a slight sense of limbo as we wait for the real thing.

Here is what it is looking like, just now:

Rather muddy and dreich:


Yet enlivened by rose hips:


And the slightly sinister honeysuckle hips:


And the suddenly colourful blueberry leaves:


Yet the hydrangea is, amazingly, still flowering:


As are the small shrub roses:


Much of the lavender is sad as hell, dreaming gloomily of the Mediterranean, which is of course where it should be living, but some of it has come back for one last hurrah:


One, in an extraordinary display of hope over experience, is even putting out new buds:



6. Thing I was not going to do today.

Put up any pictures of the dogs. There has been far too much of that malarkey lately. But then I took these, so the rational voice of restraint in my head lost:



7. Question of the day.

Does anyone know if it is too late to put in some sage plants? My old ones had to be dug up as they were ancient and had gone all to wood. I have sad gaps I would like to fill, but am afraid of the coming weather. It can easily go down to minus ten here in October, but we have not yet had a proper frost. I know that sage is tough once established, but can't remember how brave the new plants are.

8. Unexpected joy of the week.

In Our Time is BACK. I wandered about this morning listening to Melvyn Bragg discussing things I could not understand one side of, hazy with delight. That's my licence fee in action.

9. That's quite enough of all that. Have a lovely day, wherever you are.


  1. Oh Dear Tania

    How lovely to find your sane, sage and sanguine voice across the ether.

    Sometimes life disappoints - far too many of the few news, politics, food and opinions/debate sites I have frequented seem to be suffering from a lack of all of the above attributes. I am saddened.

    But then there you are nudging my conciousness in the right direction; stimulating, thought provoking, witty, challenging, encouraging......

    Long may you reign and this sanctuary flourish.

    Bless you.

  2. There was a beat - and then I snorted. And laughed a lot. That is wonderful and the perfect example of why we should never stop putting words on paper.

    I'm afraid I know nothing about sage except I love the taste of it in melted butter.

  3. I loved the ramble! but I do wish you would post the pictures as well. Its not that I am lazy but its so nice to read and then look at the picture at the same time and visualize the lavender and the dogs. Its not the same going to the picture and then coming back!!! Am I complaining too much?
    PS Dont know anything about sage at all.
    PPS - its raining cats and dogs here and its most welcome though everything is bedraggled.

  4. Oops, just looked at my post and worry that the opening may sound like an admonition. Far from it. It was a heavenly sigh - the closest one can get to an online hug.

    I am once again encouraged to 'ramble' having been distracted by life and other's agenda's since your wonderful July Workshop.

    Here on the south side of the Cairn O' Mount the day has dawned dry and bright, washing can billow on the line, windows can be safely opened and heating (oh yes - returned from the steaming south and succumbed!) can be kicked into touch again for a few hours.

    Wishing everyone a wonderful day and a shrinking, controllable 'to do' List.

  5. Reading this today has brightened my morning and given me back some of my love of the on-line world (which I was at risk of losing after an unfortunate series of events)

    I find your blog tends to reaffirm my belief that the world is a good place really, and the people are, on the whole, kind.

  6. BrightYangThing - incredibly kind thing to say; thank you.

    Em - I know; you do need a beat. Quite agree about words on paper.

    Mystica - most worried that I should do anything to inconvenience you, but am slightly puzzled. I did post the pictures. Do they not come up on your screen? Is there some terrible Blogger glitch? Can you bear to come back and explain? So sorry to be so thick.

    BYT - not at all. Took it as it was meant. Lovely to hear of life the other side of the Cairn o'Mount.

    Siobhan - you could not have said a more charming, encouraging and generous thing. It shall keep a smile on my face all day long.

  7. I'm commenting again! the pictures have come back (not just numbers like before). It may have been as you say a temporary glitch on my computer.


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