Site Feed

02 November 2003

My mum's grandfather was a collier, and a rough man. He had a family with one boy and a load of intelligent girls, one of which he plonked down on the fire when she was bothering him. My great grandmother finally kicked him out, and I have no idea what happened to him, except the daughters took out a life insurance policy on him. The daughters went on to do interesting things, and they vainly hoped Jack, the son, would not follow his father into the mine. That masculine culture got hold of him and off he went. He married a woman his sisters didn't care for, as they saw her a lazy and not too brainy. Apparently (my mum told me) she bought bread instead of making it, and had many children, which caused Mummy Barbara (my grandmother) to make a pithy comment that I won't repeat. My mum lived in London but spent lots of time at her beloved grandmother's in Sunderland. She told me stories for years and years about the way of life, the pithead, the sweet shop, riding on her Uncle Jack's shoulders ("Come on, White Skull," he'd say. "Come on Black Skull," She'd answer.)

My father's father lost his mother, then his father married the housekeeper. She was cruel to him. He wasn't a young child -- I'd guess he was a teenager. My mum told me he'd come home to find his dinner, and the dog's dinner, in the oven, but he couldn't tell which was which. He ran off, and asked the father of his wife-to-be (I think he was friends with the many brothers and stayed there when he ran away) what he should do, and the father told him to become a plumber as he'd always have work. He did, although he became a builder. I was told many times that among the buildings he built, he built the first synagogue in Leeds. We aren't Jewish, but the result down the ages was that my father always ate matzohs. They are a lot like water biscuits, anyway, and a lot easier to get around here. Just recently the kind he liked disappeared and some inferior (to us) kind became ubiquitous. So he was unhappy about that for a short time, then he died, so I guess it worked out.

I've been listening to this I Lombardi recording every day -- the performance was brilliant. The recording of the performance was... not so good... but at least there is one. It's not like those early opera recordings which make you look around for the organ grinder's monkey, but it's very crude. But -- listening just now it made me cry at the end of Act 3. Luciano's beautiful voice was amazing, and as someone said, "He's a hunk. A fat hunk -- but a hunk." Renatta Scotto is unbelievably wonderful. My fave, Ruggiero, is lovely times one hundred. At one point I thought they were playing hacky sack with the microphone. Stop that! Don't you know people in the next millenium are going to be listening to this?

posted by - 4:51 PM


Post a Comment




Site Feed



firemist red

Combat Cards

Blip TV Rocks

So many things to do, so little motivation

Backpacking Burro

Salazar Jack

Lucy Sits Up and Blogs

Tina's Universum

Nova Albion Detective Agency

Playing Statues

Yarn Miracle


Don Carson Creative

Flummer, Flummel, Flummo

Elle Coyote

Painting Soul

Upload Video and Images - Putfile

Artists Union


2002-10 2002-11 2002-12 2003-01 2003-03 2003-04 2003-05 2003-06 2003-07 2003-08 2003-09 2003-10 2003-11 2003-12 2004-01 2004-02 2004-03 2004-04 2004-05 2004-06 2004-07 2004-08 2004-09 2004-10 2004-11 2004-12 2005-01 2005-02 2005-03 2005-04 2005-05 2005-06 2005-07 2005-08 2005-09 2005-10 2005-11 2005-12 2006-01 2006-02 2006-03 2006-04 2006-05 2006-06 2006-07 2006-08 2006-09 2006-10 2006-11 2006-12 2007-01 2007-02 2007-03 2007-04 2007-05 2007-06 2007-07 2007-08 2007-09 2007-10 2007-11 2007-12 2008-01 2008-02 2008-03 2008-04 2008-05 2008-06 2008-07 2008-08 2008-09 2008-10 2008-11 2008-12 2009-01 2009-02 2009-03 2009-04 2009-05 2009-06 2009-07 2009-08 2009-09 2009-10 2009-11 2009-12 2010-01 2010-02 2010-03 2010-04 2010-05 2010-06 2010-07 2010-08 2010-09 2010-10 2010-11 2010-12 2011-01 2011-02 2011-03 2011-04 2011-05 2011-06 2011-07 2011-08 2011-09 2011-10 2011-11 2011-12 2012-01 2012-02 2012-03 2012-04 2012-05 2012-06 2012-07 2012-08 2012-09 2012-10 2012-11 2012-12 2013-01 2013-02 2013-03 2013-04 2013-05 2013-06 2013-07 2013-08 2013-09 2013-10 2013-11

I want to ask for thoughts about improving the world -- what do people need? How can things be organised?