Monthly Archives: May 2022

Book Review: William Ryan ~ The Holy Thief (2010)

The death of Phillip Kerr left a hole in my reading of historical novels. His principal character, Bernie Gunther,1 a Berlin policeman becomes embedded in the Nazi regime whilst maintaining his integrity (sort of). Ryan’s Moscow Noir novels are set … Continue reading

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Evangelicals from the church of Dionysus

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A vicious review of a Bob Dylan concert: Scotland 1991

Dylan now resembles nothing so much as an alcoholic lumberjack on a Saturday night out in some Saskatchewan backwater, staggering around the stage here in a huge plaid jacket and odd little hat. The band, meanwhile, have all the charisma … Continue reading

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A Gangsters Son

Dad: How did the exam go son? Son: You’re gonna be proud of me. Dad: Why? Son: They questioned me but I just said, ‘No comment’.

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Asymmetric Warfare: Take that, big boy

The Attempted Assassination of Margaret Thatcher, 1984 Moscow apartment buildings bombing by Chechens, 1999 The suicide bombing of USS Cole, Yemen 2000

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The Sports Mechanic

Three middle-aged women were bragging about their sons. Sarah said “My son William studied Architecture at Cambridge. He makes £70,000 a year and has been promised a partnership.” Her friend, Anthea, smirked, “Charlie read Law at Oxford and he’s only … Continue reading

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Royal Navy Punishments in the 18th Century

“…naval authorities sought to attain social control by normalizing flogging as a form of deterrent punishment….[captains] were permitted to flog at their own discretion.”1 Shipboard punishments were inflicted by captains who had absolute authority. Only a sentence of capital punishment … Continue reading

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The American Dust Bowl: It gave birth to Woody Guthrie

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Bob Dylan and Woody Guthrie

People have told me that they’ve heard a song of mine and it’s changed their lives. Now I can only believe that or disbelieve it, but I know what it is to feel that, because I’ve felt that way myself … Continue reading

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The Sycophant

I lay panting on the altarOf his ego, waiting forHis lacerating wit to disembowel meSo, his hangers-on can laughThey lurk around the great manHoping they’ll be the one that’sGoing to be his museBut they don’t know him. The four o’clock … Continue reading

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