Why this Blog?

A place where I can lament the changing times; for eccentric comments on current affairs and for unfashionable views, expressed I hope, in cogent style; also occasional cris de coeur largely concerned, I regret to say, with myself.


I welcome your comments, so do please write. Please note however that all comments are moderated prior to publication. Whilst I fully appreciate that life can be frustrating, nevertheless, abuse, SMS language and illiteracy will not be tolerated!

Wednesday 12 October 2016

Disingenuous Twerp

Today's headline could refer to a great many politicians - though not the egregious Trump; nothing disingenuous about that bastard.
No, today I am talking about that well-known wimpy weather-vane. Nick Clegg, erstwhile leader of the sinking Liberal Democratic Party here in England.
During Prime Minister's Questions today in the House of Commons, Clegg's performance was reported by the BBC as follows: 
He [Clegg] accused Theresa May, "prime minister of our country, with no mandate of her own", of having the gall to tell her Conservative Party conference that if "you believe we have a natural affinity with other countries", British internationalism, "you are a citizen of nowhere".
Typical bloody leftie tripe.  The socialists often like to try this one on as well.  What does this ineffectual buffoon mean by "mandate?"
Mr Clegg: (time you studied British Constitution isn't it?) here in Great Britain, we elect PARTIES not "presidents".  We have an excellent Head of State in the person of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II. 
Try to keep up.
Until the next time

Saturday 1 October 2016

Another New Craze For Me

No, I am not planning any drastic terminal action - in this regard it is worth recalling Dorothy Parker's poem:

Razors pain you,
Rivers are damp.
Acids stain you,
Drugs give you cramp.
Guns are unlawful
Nooses give,
Gas smells awful,
You might as well live!
For the past eight weeks or so I have been shaving with what is popularly known as a "cut-throat" razor, more correctly called a straight razor.  When all goes well, there is nothing quite like a straight-razor shave.
Typically as a hopeless collector, I have accumulated quite a few already; they are lovely things - I love the look of polished steel and have enormous respect for the craftsmanship that went into making them.
It started when, following the death of my mother in February this year, I found in her effects my paternal grandfather's straight razor. I had this professionally honed and thus the rot set in!
I am now trying to learn how to hone the razors myself and I can assure you that it is no picnic. The cost of suitable stones is very high and there is an enormous amount of debate about the merits of various types.
There are of course forums for enthusiasts, for example Badger & Blade to which I am subscribed.
Straight razors are quite a big thing in the USA and once upon a time, when things were actually manufactured in England, many razors made in Sheffield were exported to the US.  Almost unbelievably (to me at least) at one time many of the razors manufactured in Germany's famous cutlery town, Solignen would carry the proud slogan "Finest Sheffield Steel" so steel was exported to Germany to make razors.  Hard to believe today isn't it?  Sheffield-made razors enjoy a very good reputation in the States. Makes me sad, frankly.
Today I doubt that there is a single firm in England making razors, yet they are made still in Solignen and in Japan.  The Chinese also make razors, but you wouldn't want to shave with one - that is not until a great deal of work has been done to it!
To close here's a snap of a couple of vintage German razors:
With so many (I have about thirty already) it is always a struggle to choose one - or two - with which to shave.  (Un)happily most of them are not yet properly honed or "shave ready" as they say so the choice is relatively limited!
Until the next time.