'I think the carrot infinitely more fascinating than the geranium. The carrot has mystery.' I like vegetables and austerity. This year I've been trying to be more self-sufficient: grow things, consume less, recycle more. I have happy times with my compost heap. I often think of Digging for Victory and Potato Pete with his friend Dr. Carrot. I've spent the last couple of days looking through propaganda, WWII and poster sites, finding all kinds of fascinating and brilliantly designed stuff by artists like Abram Games. British food conservation posters - Save bread and you save lives, I make a good soup says Potato Pete, Better Pot Luck than Humble Pie. More information about growing your own: - Ministry of Agriculture leaflets and Allotment and garden guides from 1945, The Kitchen Front, Wartime Britain - the vegan and vegetarian, 'Carrot Flan . . . reminds you of Apricot Flan but has a deliciousness all its own' - more wartime cookery.
And the rest: US food posters - Your Victory Garden counts more than ever, Food is a weapon - Don't waste it, Save waste fats for explosives. Other UK austerity posters - Go by Shanks' pony, Our jungle fighters want socks: Please knit now (Games), Make do and mend, Help put the lid on Hitler. VD propaganda - Hello Boy Friend, coming MY way?, If you could see what the doctor sees you'd leave 'em alone, By comparison a rattlesnake is harmless, more US VD posters. General - Military posters of the 20th Century - good stuff here like 1920s Russia, Russian Cold War, Chinese Cold War. Finally, a Secret History programme on sex and propaganda called 'Sex Bomb' (Channel 4, Monday) - images & background here (not safe for work).
**And yes I have changed it so that visited links are a different colour.
Especially for you:
I've got a busy few days planned. Off to see the Kings of Convenience tonight, then a big job interview on Wednesday. I don't like job interviews. Whenever I'm at one (thankfully not often) I get distracted thinking of Spud's interview in Trainspotting.
WOMAN What do you see as your main strengths?
SPUD I love people. All people. Even people that no one else loves, I think they're OK, you know. Like Beggars.
You have to answer these daft questions that don't prove anything except your ability to make it through an interview. Sitting in some pokey room with people staring at you. Taint my idea of fun. This one is an 'Assessment Day'. It's the presentation, the interview, the psychometric testing ... the whole shebang. I have a horrible feeling they're going to round us all up and make us assemble flatpack furniture or something. Did I apply for Big Brother by mistake?
SPUD Hey. Right. No problem. Whatever you say, man. You're the man, the governor, the dude in the chair, like. I'm merely here. But obviously I am. Here, that is. I hope I'm not talking too much. I don't usually.
Oh Sweet Lord.
Risky buildings is a new website marking 25 years of the Twentieth Century Society, which aims to protect some of the UK's most neglected modern buildings. There is so much great stuff here, all kinds of things - wind tunnels, lidos, cinemas, and as well as some famous buildings like Battersea Power Station. St Peter's Seminary can't be the only noteworthy building in Scotland - must get thinking. It's criminal that so many of Alexander Greek Thomson's buildings are empty or derelict. The Egyptian Halls (slap bang in Glasgow city centre) are completely neglected, the magnificent Caledonian Rd Church is practically a ruin and another one of his buildings is down for demolition. That can't be right.
This week's round-up:
I like has been a bit short of pictures lately, which simply won't do. To try and make amends here are photos from Newcastle and Gateshead taken in May. There's a new old cafe in the fabulously titled Sarah's Tuck-in. This was one of many things that I liked about Grainger Market, stuck in time with its General Weigh House where people queue up to get weighed for a penny. It was a mix of old and new all round with the Baltic Centre, Millenium Bridge, and Angel of the North on one hand, and the Victorian splendour of the Central Arcade, this nice building and relics like Tynemouth's King St Social Club on the other. Happy trails, all in all.
Happy Bloomsday! I remember having to read Ulysses for my English degree and I lugged a copy home with dread. Once I started reading I couldn't believe what a great book it was. 16 years later it's still the best book I've read (not my favourite, that's another story). Complex and inventive, funny and affirmative. I have a terrible memory for the ending of books but this is one where I can tell you the last word. Yes.
My mail is a bit temperamental at the moment so if you've had anything returned please resend or try email@example.com which seems to be working okay. Still catching up:
It's all coming back to me:
It's all going horribly wrong. My computer caught something vile and has been kaput all week. Now, thanks to some hard work on the part of Mr I like it's working again but nothing is in the right place and some things are lost and gone forever. The worst part was we thought all our photos of Tommy for the last year were up in smoke. I am eternally grateful for digital cameras at most times, but backing the photos up and/or printing them off is something I never get round to doing and I was distraught at the thought of losing all those memories. Mr I like, a veteran of the 'Lost and Crossed' section of a photo processing company pointed out that few things have so little monetary value but are so irreplaceable. When their photos were lost, people would phone up to demand the cost of their wedding/trip to Australia refunded. I can understand this, and have to remind myself that things still happened, whether or not I've got a picture of it.
Anyhow, the upshot of this is that we got the photos back, but all my bookmarks and emails are gone, which is a small price to pay. It's strangely liberating, as if the internet is one big tabula rasa, clean and ready to start again. It does mean I've lost my address book and things people have sent in, so if you sent something recently could you send it again please? I'm having to type this all in Notepad, so back to normal when I've got everything sorted out.
I thought it was going to be quieter this month. Not so:
New likes up. Shortcuts & supplementary info:
I like recommends:
Fattypuffs and Thinifers by Andre Maurois. Timeless children's book with great illustrations by Fritz Wegner.
This is Paris by M. Sasek. First in the classic series of children's travel books and still relevant today.
Hey Nostradamus! by Douglas Coupland. Modern and classic at the same time.