Thursday, August 31, 2006
Yesterday Red went to Bristol Museum. It's a great place that contains all the classic items of an old style museum, ranging from a Gypsy Caravan to fossils, and from mummies to pottery but the most interesting set of exhibits is the range of stuffed animals. Strange to see in this day and age it still holds a fascination - but apart from the Wolverine of course the item of greatest interest is a Thylacine. Thylacines were a marsupial wolf that became extinct in 1936 - two years before becoming a protected species. Wrongly blamed for sheep stealing this carnivore had a bounty on its head and was wiped out. There are of course those that hold out hope that some may remain in the wilderness of Tasmania - or even mainland Australia - it would certainly be a brilliant find but perhaps the best hope is with Jurassic Park style cloning. Maybe these stuffed animals might be useful for their DNA - let's hope they stay on display. Site on the Thylacine - includes footage of the last captive Tazzy tiger - one of the saddest films you'll ever see. Read about the plight of the Tasmanian Devil.
Wednesday, August 30, 2006
Tuesday, August 29, 2006
According to the Wikipedia today is the day in 1756 that Frederick the Great started the Seven Years War by invading Saxony. I'm not sure about this actual date as being accurate but its a good enough excuse for me to entertain you with some photos from my Seven Years War days. The photo left is one of the events I organised at Bath, American museum and is mostly members of the 13th, 36th, and 42nd.
The one of me is when I portrayed an officer of the French colonial marines. The photos are from about 98-99.
The society I started in about 95 is still going - visit it here. They have a battle on the 16th-17th September at the Royal Gunpowder Mills Waltham Abbey, Essex
Monday, August 28, 2006
Sunday, August 27, 2006
Today is the anniversary of the Battle of Castlebar - the highpoint in the 1798 intervention by French forces in the rebellion of the United Irishmen.
So here's me in the uniform of the French forces of this era - I'm in the British one in the posting below. I really like the style of the French revolution though this impression of mine is not brilliant - I should have long hair and a moustache, but there you go. Sometimes we wore sabots or went barefoot in our desire to be authentic but this was pretty painful.
There was an excellent tv series 'The Year of the French' which was shown in the early days of Channel 4 - with music by the Chieftains ...it was a real treat.
Saturday, August 26, 2006
Friday, August 25, 2006
Anyone bored in Ohio this weekend should toddle on down to this ferret show to see and smell these adorable fellows in the flesh. We're (by we I mean Sue) is gradually perfecting the art of photographing these fast-moving animals. It helps having such a handsome ferret as a model. As you might have guessed I have really fallen for Napoleon in a big way - I would like to build him a castle in the garden with integral pipes for him to use - also soon I will be introducing him to my remote control tank. Trouble is he might then get spoilt and subesequently picked on by the other not so nice ferrets. Oh the worry.
Wednesday, August 23, 2006
Tuesday, August 22, 2006
Today is the anniversary of the landing at Killala in 1798 of a French expeditionary force under General Humbert to assist the revolt of the United Irishmen against the British Crown.
So that's another excuse for me to have a pic of me up - doing 1798 in 98 - I did quite a few things - presumably noone else wanted to - including a tv programme 'Ulster's '98'. We also 'occupied' Lisburne which was hairy - it was supposed to finish with the hanging of Henry Munro but a descendant objected and the whole thing was finished off with a sing-song.
Monday, August 21, 2006
Here's a treat - one of the true poets of the blues and harp virtuoso Sonny Boy. If you don't believe he was a real poet in the truest sense of the word check out the first few verses of the song on the clip
Please come home to your daddy, and explain yourself to me
Because I and you are man and wife, tryin' to start a family
I'm beggin' you baby, cut out that off the wall jive
If you can't treat me no better, it gotta be your funeral and my trial
When I and you first got together, 't was on one Friday night
We spent two lovely hours together, and the world it was allright
I'm just beggin' you baby, please cut out that off the wall jive
You know you gotta treat me better, if you don't it gotta be your funeral and my trial
More on the Wolf hybrid Wiki on Wolfdog
Sunday, August 20, 2006
We were talking, Red and I about the Ghost Whisperer and how it is based on a real person - Mary Ann Winkowski - and he said 'I bet she doesn't look like Jennifer Love Hewitt - I expect she's a munter' and I, for some reason said 'yes I expect she looks like a toad with a wig on'. Of course not knowing we wondered if we were right and dashed to the pc. Well judge for yourself - here's a link to her webpage - you decide.
Fort Recovery - built by Wayne
Legionville - dedicated to the forces led by Wayne
Official Battlefield site
Painting of the battle
Saturday, August 19, 2006
Friday, August 18, 2006
Thursday, August 17, 2006
Five injured in badger rampage
Badgers on the web
Tuesday, August 15, 2006
What was it that made Napoleon so fascinating to me I don't know - the humble origins, the intellect, the aggression, the opportunism, the fact that he shook the foundations of old Europe - his ego? Maybe Napoleon is the male role model par excellence.
Monday, August 14, 2006
Sunday, August 13, 2006
The coat I'm wearing has an interesting background - it was made in '89 by Simon Frame for the tercentenary of Killikrankie but since then was used in practically every possible way - the Monmouth Rebellion on both sides, the Boyne in Ireland, an American Indian trade coat, a Governor at the Salem Witch trials, an Irish officer in the War of Spanish Succession - even travelling to Estonia to take part in the relief of Narva. Simon got the coat back a year or two ago and since then the coat has been enjoying a happy retirement, a little damaged from its travails.
Narva is on this weekend so let's hope it goes as well as previous years - article here
Saturday, August 12, 2006
wiki on military history of Argentina
BBC article on the forgotten invasion of Argentina
Friday, August 11, 2006
Thursday, August 10, 2006
My son was looking up stuff on the Ekorus - a giant prehistoric mustelid - and it looked a bit like a Wolverine in the picture. The ekorus used to bring down horses and had leopard-like legs so I don't think it is that much like a Wolverine but the Wolverine is an amazing creature. A relative of the weasel that can kill something as large as a moose. Distribution: Canada, Estonia, Finland, Mongolia, Norway, Russia, Sweden, USA Read more here
Wiki on the Wolverine
The Wolverine Foundation site - well worth visiting if you care enough about one the planet's most fascinating creatures.
More stuff on polecats here including some photos and the fact that Polecats kill by 'pithing' or biting through the brain stem which leaves the prey alive but immobile - I heard once of someone who found a stash of frogs in a wall - all alive but paralysed.
Polecat survey showing distribution map
Wiki on European polecats
Of course there was an 80s rockabilly band called the Polecats who featured Boz Boorer who is best known for his work with Morrissey. Watch their ultra-catchy orginal Make A Circuit With Me video here
Phew! Ferrets to Morrissey in one posting.
Wednesday, August 09, 2006
Inspired by the French chateaux he'd seen in the Hundred Years War John de la Mare started Nunney castle near Frome in the 1370s. Never a serious military fortress being overlooked by rolling hills it was no doubt an impressive enough status symbol for the time. It passed into the Prater family in the 1560s. The castle was besieged in 1645 when the New Model Army's siege train was despatched from the main force to finish this outpost of Royalist resistance. It fell without much effort, this was not a building made to resist artillery. The garrison was tiny and it is said that they made pigs scream to make it seem they had plenty of pork to slaughter. It's said that it fell to Cromwell or Fairfax but this segment from Anglia Rediviva shows that only a small detachment was needed to reduce it.
The General resting all the next day a t Sherborne, to settle the business of the county. And on Monday (after Sir Lewis Dives and the prisoners , together with the club-leaders before mentioned, who were had in hold, were sent away with a guard to London) the army marched to Castle-Carew (save that Colonel Rainsborough with his own and Colonel Hammond’s regiments, and two pieces of ordnance, was sent to Nunney-castle, for the reducing thereof), th e rest of the army marched that night to Castle-Carew: the next day the General himself went to view Nunney castle, and found it to be a very strong piece. The next day the army marched to Chue, nine miles, and ill way;
Thursday 21st, in the morning, to encourage us in our engagements, we received intelligence of the surrender of Nunney-castle to Colonel Rainsborough, upon condition to have liberty to go to their own houses.
My favourite feelgood goosefraba song, and universally popular family-wise is Sugartown by Nancy Sinatra. Watch the lovely cheesey video here. How could you get road rage with that on the stereo?
Tuesday, August 08, 2006
Green dreams are mainstream but noone told the hippies
If I wasn't so well brought up I'd go along purely to defecate in one of the hot tubs.
Monday, August 07, 2006
Wiki on Mel Gibson
Sunday, August 06, 2006
Saturday, August 05, 2006
One Mile to Bushy Run Station print More Bushy Run reenactment photos
Clerks 2 It Kicks Ass!
Clerks 2 - A sequel worth waiting 12 years for
Clerks 2 - a perfect sequel
Friday, August 04, 2006
Thursday, August 03, 2006
Activities surrounding this event include: the Trek from Fort Shirley to Kittanning, the "William Thompson: The Forgotten Patriot" exhibit, an art exhibit, an original play, "The Battle of Kittanning," a Native American village, a military encampment, a remembrance service at Blanket Hill, a march through Kittanning, two reenactments of the Battle of Kittanning, and Antiquing Along the Allegheny.
The Trek will leave Fort Shirley in Huntingdon County on Aug. 28, 2006, and will follow Col.l Armstrong's route to Kittanning, traveling through Huntingdon, Blair, Cambria, Indiana, and Armstrong counties. Those participating in the Trek will be wearing authentic clothing, and will be setting up camp each night along the way. For more information about the Trek, or for more information on participating in some, or all of the Trek, visit www.reenacting.net/kittanning2006.
Official site and guidelines
Artwork from Larry Smail
Tuesday, August 01, 2006
Seems to me quite shocking - but I suppose it doesn't take into account quality of life for example, or the effect on mental health, just deaths.