Blog Archives

21st October 2005: Contains obscenities (Emily Dickinson guy)

I was in Argo yesterday evening, a little independent new bookshop on St Catherine West, near the second-hand bookshops Westcott, Vortex and Astro. I went in to see if they could order Noel Streatfeild’s reprinted 1930s adult novel Saplings for

Posted in Books, Human culture, Life as it blossoms out in a jar or a face

1st August 2005: What I did on my summer holiday

There’s a megalithic burial chamber at Pentre Ifan in the Mynydd Presceli that has a seventeen ton bluestone balanced on top of three pointed stones, and it’s been balanced there like that for the last five thousand years. As with

Posted in Human culture, Life as it blossoms out in a jar or a face

17th March 2005: Liberty (I’m for it)

Liberty is one of those things like happiness which comes along as a side-effect rather than as a goal. Liberty is a side-effect of people having lots of choices. You can see this in US history when there was a

Posted in Human culture, Life as it blossoms out in a jar or a face

3rd September 2003: Gravy Bath Coriolanus

Theatre is something it’s only possible to have in civilization. There are barbarian poems and stories and carvings and paintings, but only in settled communities have people come together to co-operate in this strangest of arts. There is a script,

Posted in Human culture, Theatre

25th April 2003: Time and history and how things fit together

I was once helping out on a dig in Greece. We’d start work early in the morning, knock off for the hot part of the day, then start up again when it got cooler. In the hot part, we’d generally

Posted in Human culture, Life as it blossoms out in a jar or a face

6th January 2003: Time and the bell have buried the day

You can define a culture by cultural referents the members of the culture have in common. Quick, if someone mentions Cordelia’s attitude towards death, are they talking about Shakespeare, Bujold, or Buffy? History is so vast, so multi-layered, so complex.

Posted in Human culture

17th December 2002: Human Civilization

There’s an exhibition in the Pointe Calliere Museum of History and Archaeology in the Old Port in Montreal, called “Varna”. It’s on tour from a museum in Varna, Bulgaria, and covers the history of Varna back to about eight thousand

Posted in Human culture, Life as it blossoms out in a jar or a face