Lundi limerick #79

Charlie the clown came from Zelah

he was peculiar fella

His nose was so big

he looked like a pig

and his eyes were a very deep yella

 

Zelah is a village in Cornwall, England, approximately 5 miles (8 kilometres) north of Truro. Zelah is the largest settlement in the civil parish of St Allen. The parish population in the 2001 census was 435.

In picking this village, at random, I discovered a strange happenstance.

Happenstance is, I think, my favourite word. Life is full of them, and I always delight in finding, encountering, and living through them…….Anyway, back to the happenstance.

 

E R Kelly’s Directory of Cornwall lists two public houses in the village in the 1883 entry and shows on the map both The Hawkins Arms – licensee Mr John Borlase and just behind to the east the Half-Moon Public House – licensee John Jose.

Now, I live in a small town which boasts a pub called the Sir John Borlase Warren, named after Admiral Sir John Borlase Warren,1st Baronet GCB GCH PC (2 September 1753 – 27 February 1822) who was a British Royal Navy officer, diplomat and politician who sat in the House of Commons between 1774 and 1807. He was born in this town.

Whether the two were related, I have no idea, but it does seem a rather strange happenstance, and that makes me very happy!

I am easily pleased.

 

 

 

 

 

 

A view from across the pond, and back

“The President is merely the most important among a large number of public servants. He should be supported or opposed exactly to the degree which is warranted by his good conduct or bad conduct, his efficiency or inefficiency in rendering loyal, able, and disinterested service to the Nation as a whole. Therefore it is absolutely necessary that there should be full liberty to tell the truth about his acts, and this means that it is exactly necessary to blame him when he does wrong as to praise him when he does right. Any other attitude in an American citizen is both base and servile. To announce that there must be no criticism of the President, or that we are to stand by the President, right or wrong, is not only unpatriotic and servile, but is morally treasonable to the American public. Nothing but the truth should be spoken about him or any one else. But it is even more important to tell the truth, pleasant or unpleasant, about him than about any one else.” – Theodore Roosevelt, 26th US President (1858-1919)

My life#6 – The Army -First days

Today is 55 years since I left home to join the Army. Would I do it again?
You bet!

 

Peter's pondering

This, and subsequent “The Army” entries, came about through my Niece requesting some information on my Army days. She was doing some sort of project that required a “behind the scenes” view of military life, so I started to jot things down.

I got a little carried away!

I suppose that this became the precursor to my blog, so I have Penny to thank for that!

I am offering these jottings exactly as originally presented, the only changes being the introduction of badges, where appropriate, and occasional comments, shown in blue.


I joined the Army in 1964, at the age of 16. As I was under the age of majority I had to have my parents’ permission to do so.

Despite the image of the Swinging Sixties you must remember that the majority of youth was unsophisticated, untraveled and, despite what they believed, very naïve. We had not benefitted, or…

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Song Lyric Sunday 04/08/2019 – Song from a TV Show

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tygpress

Thank you to Jim Adams, who hosts Song Lyric Sunday and gives us the chance to share lots of familiar, and some not so familiar, songs.

If you fancy sharing one of your favourite songs you can find out how to participate, and also listen to all the great entries, here.

The theme for this week posed a bit of a problem for me as I could quite happily live without television in my life!

I was 14 when we first had a television. Black and white of course, and only one channel. At 16, I joined the army and went to college for 3 years. No television. At 19 I deployed to the Middle East. No television. At 21 I went to Germany. Very little television. My daughter grew up with Sesame Street in German. So it goes on. I watched TV intermittently. Today, if the television is on, the chances are that I am reading blogs rather than watching it.

However, I think it is impossible to be untouched by television. I have seen a fair selection along the way, and one thing I MUST see, when it is on, is Later……with Jools Holland. He is a consummate musician and performer in his own right and , over the years, has introduced a gargantuan list of artists of every genre imaginable, and then some! You can see the list here.  

So I thought here we have a huge number of songs I can use for my SLS choice this week.

WRONG!

Instead, I suddenly thought of one show that I found to be both funny, thought provoking, and, at times, downright sad!

M*A*S*H (an acronym for Mobile Army Surgical Hospital) was an American war comedy-drama television series that aired on CBS from 1972 to 1983. It was developed by Larry Gelbart, adapted from the 1970 feature film M*A*S*H, which, in turn, was based on Richard Hooker’s 1968 novel MASH: A Novel About Three Army Doctors. The series, which was produced with 20th Century Fox Television for CBS, follows a team of doctors and support staff stationed at the “4077th Mobile Army Surgical Hospital” in Uijeongbu, South Korea, during the Korean War (1950–53). The show’s title sequence features an instrumental-only version of “Suicide Is Painless,” the original film’s theme song. The show was created after an attempt to film the original book’s sequel, M*A*S*H Goes to Maine, failed. The television series is the best-known of the M*A*S*H works, and one of the highest-rated shows in U.S. television history. (wikipedia)

This was, of course, being shown at the time of the Vietnam War, and was highly controversial. What started out as a comedy, with drama overtones soon became a drama with added comedy!

It’s a long time ago now, but I seem to remember that the “squaddie” humour really came across well, and could evoke real feelings of sadness, even the odd tear or two.

Suicide Is Painless is a song written by Johnny Mandel (music) and Michael Altman (lyrics). It was the theme song for both the movie and TV series M*A*S*H.

Director Robert Altman had two stipulations about the song for Mandel: it had to be called “Suicide Is Painless” and it had to be the “stupidest song ever written”. Altman attempted to write the lyrics himself, but upon finding it too difficult for his 45-year-old brain to write “stupid enough,” he gave the task to his 14-year-old-son Michael, who wrote the lyrics in five minutes. Ironically, the son’s income from royalties for the song far exceeded his father’s income for the film.

So here it is. The Tongue-in-cheek theme song for the very sad tongue in cheek comedy about the Korean war. The film was released in 1970, at the height of the Vietnam war, and the TV series debuted in 1972, appealing to the growing anti war crowd, lasted 11 years, and was arguably one of the most successful series ever.

The TV series used instrumental versions of the song only.

Suicide Is Painless

Johnny Mandel

Through early morning fog I see
Visions of the things to be
The pains that are withheld for me
I realize and I can see

That suicide is painless
It brings on many changes
And I can take or leave it if I please

The game of life is hard to play
I’m gonna lose it anyway
The losing card I’ll someday lay
So this is all I have to say

Suicide is painless (suicide)
It brings on many changes (changes)
And I can take or leave it if I please

The sword of time will pierce our skins
It doesn’t hurt when it begins
But as it works its way on in
The pain grows stronger
Watch it grin

Suicide is painless
It brings on many changes
And I can take or leave it if I please

A brave man once requested me
To answer questions that are key
Is it to be or not to be
And I replied oh why ask me?

Suicide is painless
It brings on many changes
And I can take or leave it if I please

And you can do the same thing if you please

Source: LyricFind

Songwriters: Johnny Mandel / Michael B Altman

Suicide Is Painless lyrics © Warner Chappell Music, Inc

 

 

Seventy Five Years In The Passing: A D-Day Tribute — Gloria Smud

This needs no introduction whatsoever, other than to say what a wonderful tribute it is.

Seventy Five Years In The Passing..A D-Day Tribute. Seventy five years in the passing, The 6th of June; brave troops amassing. Nobody knew how countless would pay, For saving our souls that proud D-Day. From hillsides, valleys, towns & moors, They set off, leaving British shores. A rendezvous of military purpose, They called it Piccadilly…

via Seventy Five Years In The Passing: A D-Day Tribute — Gloria Smud

Song Lyric Sunday Theme for 12/05/2019 – Mom/ Mother/ Flowers

img_1345-3Thank you to Jim Adams, who tirelessly hosts Song Lyric Sunday and gives us the chance to share lots of favourite, and some not so familiar, songs.

The theme for this week is Mom/Mother/Flowers

If you fancy sharing one of your favourite songs you can find out how to participate, and also listen to all the great entries, here.

Obviously the theme this week is to help celebrate Mother’s Day, and today, 12th March we celebrate the most important people on the planet in the following countries:

Anguilla, Antigua and Barbuda, Aruba, Australia, Austria, Bahamas,Bangladesh, Barbados, Belgium, Belize, Benin, Bermuda, Bhutan,Bonaire, Botswana, Brazil, Brunei, Cambodia, Canada, CaymanIslands, Central African Republic, Chad, Chile, China, Colombia, Congo, Ivory Coast, Croatia, Cuba, Curaasao, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Dominica, Ecuador, Equatorial Guinea, Estonia, Ethiopia, Fiji, Finland, Germany, Gabon, Gambia, Ghana, Greece, Greenland, Grenada, Guyana, Honduras, Hong Kong, Iceland, India, Italy, Jamaica, Japan, Kenya, Latvia, Liberia, Liechtenstein,Macau, Malaysia, Malta, Myanmar, Namibia, New Zealand, Netherlands, Pakistan, Papa New Guinea, Peru, Philippines, Puerto Rico, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Saint Lucia, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Samoa, Sint Maarten, Singapore, Slovakia, South Africa, Suriname, Switzerland, Taiwan, Tanzinia, Tonga, Trinidadand Tobago, Turkey, Uganada, Ukraine, United States, Uruguay, Vietnam, Venezuela, Zambia, Zimbabwe

As it is not Mother’s Day in the UK, or Mothering Sunday as my Mum would always point out to me, I am going to be self-indulgent and choose a song from my youth. I might even choose 2!

If you are a Mom, Mum, Mother, Ma, Mummy, or any other version of the name that epitomises the one person in the world that we can none of us do without, “Thank You” for your unique gift of life that you gave to us all. Happy Mother’s Day to you.

Please sit back, and enjoy some flowers in the rain, played by The Move (the first pop song to be played, in full, on BBC Radio 1):

Flowers in the Rain

The Move

Woke up one morning half asleep
With all my blankets in a heap
And yellow roses scattered all around
The time was still approaching four
I couldn’t stand it anymore
Saw marigolds upon my eiderdown

I’m just sitting watching flowers in the rain
Feel the power of the rain making the garden grow
I’m just sitting watching flowers in the rain
Feel the power of the rain keeping me good

So I lay upon my side
With all the windows open wide
Couldn’t pressurise my head from speaking
Hoping not to make a sound
I pushed my bed into the grounds
In time to catch the sight that I was seeking

I’m just sitting watching flowers in the rain
Feel the power of the rain making the garden grow
I’m just sitting watching flowers in the rain
Feel the power of the rain keeping me good

If this perfect pleasure has to be
Then this is paradise to me
If my pillow’s getting wet
I don’t see that it matters much to me

I heard the flowers in the breeze
Make conversation with the trees
Relieved to leave reality behind me
With my commitments in a mess
My sleep has gone away depressed
In a world of fantasy you’ll find me

I’m just sitting watching flowers in the rain
Feel the power of the rain making the garden grow
I’m just sitting watching flowers in the rain
Feel the power of the rain keeping me good

Watching flowers in the rain
Flowers in the rain
Power flowers in the rain
Flower power in the rain

Songwriters: WOOD ROY

Flowers in the Rain lyrics © S.I.A.E. Direzione Generale, Essex Music Inc., ESSEX MUSIC INC

The bonus is the song “San Francisco (Be Sure to Wear Flowers in Your Hair)” written by John Phillips, of The Mamas and Papas,  and sung by Scott McKenzie. It was released in May 1967, to promote the Monterey Pop Festival. Many young people, who would have wished to be there, were far away from the love and the music, fighting, and dying, in Vietnam. A few of their Moms will still be alive, so, today, I think of them.

 

Song Lyric Sunday Theme for 17/02/2019

img_1345-3Jim Adams continues to look after Song Lyric Sunday, giving us the chance to share lots of favourites, and some not so familiar songs.

The theme for this week is Hill/Mountain and you can find all the great entries here.

Because I was pipped at the post by THIS THAT AND THE OTHER with my choice this week, I am offering another “Hill” tune for your delight (or not). You will find this at the bottom and it morphs my SLS entry into a personal history lesson too!

Anyone who has followed my SLS entries for a while will know that my mind often goes to Beatles songs to try to find a suitable offering to present. I’m not always successful!

What I found this week is a song off the Magical Mystery Tour album. After the success of Sgt Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band, The Beatles wanted to create a psychedelically themed film, and Magical Mystery Tour was the result. It was designed as an unscripted television special and featured 6 new songs.

It was never meant to be an LP, but the producers added existing singles to make up the numbers! It worked out pretty well.

Here, for your enjoyment, is “The Fool on the Hill”.

The Fool on the Hill

The Beatles

Day after day, alone on a hill
The man with the foolish grin is sitting perfectly still
Nobody wants to know him
They can see that he’s just a fool
But he never gives an answer

But the fool on the hill
Sees the sun going down
And the eyes in his head
See the world spinning round

His head in a cloud
The man with a foolish grin is talking perfectly loud
But nobody wants to hear him
They can see that he’s just a fool
But he never gives an answer

But the fool on the hill
Sees the sun going down
And the eyes in his head
See the world spinning round

But nobody wants to know him
They can see that he’s just a fool
But he never gives an answer

But the fool on the hill
Sees the sun going down
And the eyes in his head
See the world spinning round

But the fool on the hill
Sees the sun going down
And the eyes in his head
See the world spinning round

Songwriters: John Lennon / Paul McCartney

The Fool on the Hill lyrics © Sony/ATV Music Publishing LLC

Here is the extra!

This is not a song, has no lyrics, and is unlikely to have been heard by anyone reading this blog. It is, however, special to me, and is amongst the music that MAY be played at my funeral/celebration of life/throwing on the local scrap heap!

It is “High on a Hill” by the Band and Bugles of The Royal Green Jackets

I had the honour to serve with The 2ndBattalion The Royal Green Jackets, in Dover, and Omagh, Northern Ireland. I can honestly say that they were the most professional and dedicated soldiers I have ever served with. This was the one and only time I served with a Light Infantry unit and It was a real eye opener. They are different! An example is that they march at 140 paces per minute, rather than usual 116, or 120. Examples can be seen below.

Imagine doing that for any length of time, AND carrying and playing an instrument!

Remember: not just Who and When, but also understand Why — babbitman

This makes so much sense to me. I hope it may make you think beyond the ceremony of remembrance!

Wars kill people. They devastate families. Wars should be a politician’s absolute last resort and they are an admission that they have failed their people.

via Remember: not just Who and When, but also understand Why — babbitman

An Open Letter To Congress …

This letter could apply to so many countries, legislative bodies, ruling parties, and politicians. Just change the titles accordingly – but don’t forget that there are also many dedicated, honest, hardworking people in both local, and national, politics who deserve our sincere thanks and praise.

Filosofa's Word

09 April 2018

Dear Member of Congress,

I am told that you have concerns about your upcoming performance review on November 6th, as well you should.  Your employers, I and many others, are very displeased with your job performance and frankly, I am already seeking your replacement in the event you do not turn things around very quickly.  It appears the problem lies with the fact that you have forgotten to whom you owe your allegiance.  It was I and my fellow citizens who hired you, and it is to us whom you have a responsibility … all of us, not just some.

First, allow me to make one thing perfectly clear:  Donald J. Trump is not your employer!  He may have given you to believe that he is, but he is not.  He is merely another employee of the organization that is run by We The People…

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A Corkman dies on the Somme

John McGuiggan, on his site Broadsides, writes brilliantly on all sorts of matters. History, reviews, interesting tales about life in general, and his life in particular. Born into a military family, serving in the army, then transforming into a union organiser, he then somehow ended up as a barrister. He has tales to tell, funny ones, sad ones, reflective ones, but always interesting ones. Do read, and enjoy!

Broadsides - A collection of bits and pieces

The Pencil portrait of Private Christopher Coleman, from Cobh, County Cork, made by his wife.

The first week of September 1916 and the 16th Irish Division are engaged in the bloody advance across theSomme. At the village of Guillemont , men of the 7th Leinster Regiment manage to pass through the shattered village and secure and hold enemy trenches on the far side, but at terrible cost, losing some fifty percent of the soldiers engaged in the advance.  But in the bizarre ethics of war, it was a victory

Following the ‘victorious’ advance, non-combatant labour battalions are sent into the killing fields to clear up the mess left by the fighting soldiers. They clear away abandoned trenching tools, wire cutters, discarded equipment and bits and pieces of dead soldiers. It is gruesome and arduous work.

Among their number is an Englishman, Private George Wiles of the Royal Engineers. As…

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