15 April 2014

Waimea Bay Wipeout

To wipeout here meant millions of tons of water grinding your flesh into coral rock and lava. And if you recovered, it meant being sucked far out to sea as the next gigantic wave built itself up. Loose boards were like floating knifes, the fins could gut a man like a fresh-caught fish being cleaned. But Bill knew that once you were up there, once you had the wave judged just right, the ride in was the sweetest, most powerful feeling there was.

Patrick Morgan, Hang Dead Hawaiian Style (1969)

Running Down the Man (Fly Fishing for Roosterfish)

The Curmudgeon's Guide to Getting Ahead: Dos and Don'ts of Right Behavior, Tough Thinking, Clear Writing, and Living a Good Life (Charles Murray)

06 April 2014

Congratulations Oxford

Source: Hackett

04 April 2014

Farage Style

I started hearing about Nigel Farage from my Nationalist chums in England in the 1990s. I've watched his rise since then with some interest. I don't particularly agree with this politics--although I suspect we're more in agreement than not--but I do like his style.

***

'Nigel Paul Farage was born in Kent in 1964, one of two sons of a colourful and hard-drinking City stockbroker. Guy Justus Oscar Farage’s propensity to mix work with pleasure was clearly influential on the young Nigel, who followed his father into the City as a highly remunerated commodities trader. (Andrew, Farage’s younger brother, also headed to the City, where he still works as a broker on the London Metal Exchange.)

Guy, who became an alcoholic, divorced his wife Barbara when Nigel was five. But Farage acknowledges his father’s influence: like Guy – “the best-dressed man in the stock exchange at the time” – Nigel bears the demeanour and attire of a City gent before the barbarians were allowed in after the 1986 “Big Bang” reforms.

 The sense of nostalgia for a bygone age was summed up by the story of when Guy – who kicked the bottle in his mid-thirties – was in the lift with Sir Nicholas Goodison, chairman of the London Stock Exchange, at the time of Big Bang and lamented, “You’ve ruined the best gentleman’s club in the world.”

In spite of his father, Farage enjoys a pint, using his local, the George & Dragon, as a testing ground for Ukip policies: “In my village pub they are totally against,” he says of Cameron’s plan to legalise gay marriage. To complete the anti-politician image, Farage is a heavy consumer of Rothmans cigarettes and enjoys sea-fishing and country sports. A Barbour-clad Farage loves cricket and used to be seen enjoying hare coursing – until it was banned in 2005. In short, he is a young-ish fogey: most people are surprised to learn he is still in his forties.'

Nigel Farage, Financial Times (8 March 2013)

Farage's BBC debate with LibDem deputy PM Nick Clegg on 2 April 2014:


03 April 2014

A Wodehouse Lexicon

Agog - (adj) Very eager or curious to hear or see something: "I'm all agog to see the Duchess' new hat."

Bally - (adj) bloody, damned [mild explicative]: "Get that bally dog out of the kitchen!"

To be all a twitter - (v) To be anxious or excited about something: "The Mater has been all a twitter ever since Mrs. Nelson told her the news about the Duke of Edinburgh."

To be dashed - (v) To be confounded; used interchangeably with to be damned: "Well, I'll be dashed!"

To biff - (v) To strike or to punch: "If you don't remove your elbows from the table I shall biff you."

Blighter - (n) A fellow, especially one held in low esteem: "He's a silly blighter, isn't he?"

Blithering - (adj) Senselessly talkative, babbling; used chiefly as an intensive to express annoyance or contempt: "Mister Hooper, you are such a blithering idiot."

By Jove! - (interj) [used as a mild oath to express surprise or emphasis]

Chap - (n) A man or a boy.

Chin-chin - (interj) [used as a greeting or as a toast when drinking to someone's health]

Cross-patch -(n) A bad-tempered or irritable person: "O, don't be such a cross-patch, Charles."

Dash - (adv) A mild form of damn: "That was dash cunning of you."

Dashed - (adj) A mild form of damned, derived from dash: "The dashed thing doesn't work!"

Dash it all! - (interj) [used to express angry or dismay; interchangeable with damn it]

Drivel - (n) Silly nonsense; "How can you say such drivel?"

Frightful - (adj) [used for emphasis, esp. of something bad]

Frightfully - (adv) Very (used for emphasis): "I'm frightfully sorry."

To get it in the neck - (v) To be punished or criticised for something: "She really gave it to me in the neck when I arrived late for dinner."

Humdrum - (adj) Lacking variety or excitement; dull: "I don't want to go to school, Mummy, maths is so humdrum."

I say! - (interj) [used to express surprise or disgruntlement; often interchangeable with O my!]

Jolly well - (adv) very much; a phrase used for emphasis or enthusiasm: "I jolly well hope so!"

Look here! - (interj) [used to express disgruntlement or agitation with a person or persons]: "Look here, you swine! What do you think you're doing?"

Milksop - (n) A weak or ineffectual person; whimp: "Don't be such a milksop, Spencer, it's only a kitten."

Old man - (n) [term of endearment used in informal direct address]

Old thing - (n) [term of endearment used in informal direct address]

Pipped - (adj) To get the better of; defeat.

Positively - (adv) Very (used for emphasis): "How positively lovely!"

Right-o - (interj) [used to express cheerful concurrence, assent, or understanding]

Ripping - (adj) excellent, delightful: "What a positively ripping sweater you're wearing, Bernard!"

Rot - (n) nonsense [often used interjectionally]: "What rot!"

Rummy - (adj) queer, odd: "That was a rummy sort of thing to say, don't you suppose?"

To talk through one's hat - To talk nonsense; especially on a subject that one professes to be knowledgeable about but in fact is ignorant of: "He's never really met Lady Astor, he's just talking through his hat."

That's not cricket - (interj) [used to express dismay at an instance of unfair or ungentlemanly conduct or proceedings]: "Mater, Helen has taken the whole sugar dish and refuses to share. It just isn't cricket!"

Tight as an owl - (adj) drunk

Toodle-pip - (interj) good-bye, so long

What ho! - (interj) [exclamatory greeting, like saying what's up]

What? - (interj) [used as a tag question, often to solicit agreement]: "Evelyn Waugh must be the greatest author of the century, what?"

What’s-it - (n) a gadget or other thing for which the speaker does not know or has forgotten the name

With knobs on - (adv/adj) Extremely; in a similar way, but taken to an extreme: "The same to you with knobs on!"

01 April 2014

Star (David Bowie)

28 March 2014

Admiral Cod on Tour

26 March 2014

A Bad Man

A few days ago I was finishing my morning errands, dressed casually in black and headed to the gym. I was sporting a beard and my new aviator sunglasses. I walked past a young mother and her two little daughters. I heard one of the daughters say in that loud whisper that little girls have: "Mommy he looks like a bad man!" I laughed. The young mother said "Sorry!" as if she were used to it.

Crowns

24 March 2014

Hunt Soirée

Note unamused stag

21 March 2014

Peaches (The Stranglers)

20 March 2014

Harsh Daze

Like many of you, I've been transfixed by the mystery of the missing Malaysia Airlines MH370 jet. It has provided a distraction from the hilarity of the Russian humiliation of the West in Crimea.

What I find amusing in the Malaysian case is the utter incompetence of both Asian and European authorities in responding to it.

But, I think I've stumbled upon an important clue that may shed some light on the perpetrator of this puzzle.

If you scramble the name of the missing Malaysian jet pilot, Zaharie Ahmad Shah, you get this sinister message:

 "ha ha I am harsh daze"

 I think this needs looking into.

 Get the crack team of Neocon reporters at Fox News on the case, pronto.

19 March 2014

Fry and Laurie Reunited

18 March 2014

Beach Scenes

I remind myself from time to time how fortunate I am to live in such a place. California may have some problems, but it is still gloriously beautiful country, drawing tourists from all over the world. It also attracts visitors from more local, less glorious places.

I visited one of the state beaches with a girlfriend last weekend. It was only a short drive away. We parked and hiked down one of the steep trails that lead to the water.

We encountered several large females stalled along the track, breathing heavily and clutching the guardrail. We were shocked to see a multitude of extremely fat girls lounging about on the sand like so many beached elephant seals. A few of them looked like giant beach balls with legs the size of barrels. Many of them had tattoos.

My girlfriend and I just looked at each other as if to say: "WTF?" She was shocked at the young age of so many of these girls. I'm afraid the age at which American women choose to 'let themselves go' is getting younger.

I had to avert my eyes. When my ladyfriend noticed me assessing the occasional hottie in a bikini, she said: "Hey!"

"Darling," I replied, "it's important I set my gaze upon more appealing scenery lest I suffer serious retinal damage." Or words to that effect.

She laughed and pretended to punch me in the arm.

Now, it's not all bad.

Near my house in Laguna Beach a cliff juts out into the water. One can get around it only by climbing over large rocks at low tide. Beyond it lie a small stone wading pool and a tower, where, I can reveal here, I have inadvertently stumbled upon erotic photo shoots and ladies sunbathing in the nude.

I trust you can imagine my reaction.

Cricket: la casquette des sportsman

17 March 2014

I'm Shakin'

I live in a tall house by the beach. My bedroom is on the third floor. The master bedroom contains two main windows facing outward towards the ocean, and four internal windows looking out on to the living room and dining room below. They are the first to rattle when an earthquake occurs. I did not feel the earthquake this morning. Nor did I hear it. Probably--as one of my girlfriends has been telling me--because I was too drunk from the night before to notice.

14 March 2014

Royal Flash

13 March 2014

Radiant Trout

I was struck by the beauty of this animal. It brings back some memories. The earliest fly-fishing expedition that I can recall was in the mid-1970s, and indeed somewhere there is a photo of a proud yours truly struggling to hold up a string of rainbows for the camera. My most recent fly-fishing excursions were on the Mianus, Norwalk, and Saugatuck rivers in Connecticut--almost 20 years ago! I used to fish every weekend, spending most of the day in the woods along the riverbanks, catching brookies (at left) and brownies. Over the past decade most of my fishing has been in Mexico hunting for dorado, marlin, and tuna, with the occasional spearfishing trip in California and the Bahamas. But there's something about fly-fishing for trout that's a bit...different. Perhaps it's time to break out the old 9' Sage rod and reel and head into the mountains.

Tassel Loafers: Super Bien !

Although my predilection for the tassel loafer is well-documented, I would not go so far as to tattoo its image on my body. Even a chap like myself has limits. With the rise of Nationalism in France, however, it could very well be the case that tassel loafers are making a comeback amongst the youth market.

"In France, the tasseled loafer makes its own peculiar political statement. John Vinocur, the executive editor of The International Herald Tribune, said that the shoes were worn, actually flaunted, by young rightists in the mid-1980's who wished to demonstrate their distaste for the Socialist Government...To them, the preppiness of the shoe represented American prosperity and free-market conservatism. Thus, it became part of the battle uniform of the young soldier of la contre-revolution."

The Politicization of Tassel Loafers, Neil A. Lewis, New York Times, 03/11/93

12 March 2014

Rhodesia (Japan)

)

11 March 2014

Style Matters

Ban Bitches

The current power elites never cease to amuse me. Facebook business executive Sheryl Sandberg has suggested banning the word "bossy" because it's a term disproportionately used against aggressive, motivated women in the office. This won't work, of course, because one can't go around simply banning words. It's madness.

I’ve written before about lady bosses:

Women managers, I have found over the years, are easily influenced and manipulated. They are highly susceptible to flattery, and easily swayed. Female bosses are unfocused. It is a result, I think, of multi-tasking. In one bank where I worked, I knew a group of male analysts who, on being approached by the female department head with some large task in hand, would immediately ask about her weekend, or ask about her daughter who was away at boarding school, or compliment her on her hair. After a while she would leave, flattered and flustered, apparently having forgotten why she wanted to talk to the analysts in the first place. I have seen this technique work time and again. In the past, when I had a female boss, I was usually able to use my charm and good looks to get my own way, or to obtain preferential treatment of some kind, including office sex. The trick with a female manager is, never make her forget that she is a woman first and foremost–even if she looks like your Aunt Phyllis.

I actually like female bosses, although I haven’t had very many. It’s the male managers–usually white knight douchebags–with whom I have issues. More on that later.

Oddly enough, the best manager I’ve had was a homosexualist chap who let it be known to me–and our team–that he had a crush on me. Needless to say, I got away with a lot.

The second best manager I’ve had was a hot Vietnamese married girl my own age who also had a crush on me and was apt to kiss me when our team went out for drinks. It was a bit awkward, I must say.

Indoor Sports

10 March 2014

The Brazilian

Just recently I was in contact with a Brazilian ex-girlfriend. Tight body, big tits, sculpted arse, long raven-black hair, expertly-trimmed snatch, and energy level turned to 11.

It was an awesome match. My Nordic coolness contrasted well with her South American fire. She thrived on it. So did I.

During our conversation she revealed to me she miscarried a child of ours about 10 years ago. Which came as a bit of a surprise. Although, given my activities over the years, it really shouldn't have done.

I don't know whether to believe her.

Today she is comfortably ensconced in a relationship with an older gent, a high-flying European antiques dealer based in Los Angeles.

Brute Force and Breeding: Dornford Yates

06 March 2014

The Sartorial Legacy of the Crimean War

Lord Cardigan
Note the impressive facial hair
With the Crimea in the news these days, I thought it an opportune time to consider the sartorial influences of the Crimean War (1853-1856) upon the British people, and, indeed, the world. War, as we can see, so often leads to sartorial invention.

(1) Cardigan sweater - The cardigan is named after James Thomas Brudenell, 7th Earl of Cardigan who led British cavalry in the Charge of the Light Brigade against Russian troops at the Battle of Balaclava (25 Oct 1854). The sweater was based on waistcoats worn by British infantry and quickly became popular when introduced in London. Today the cardigan is favoured by preppies, hipsters, and grandfathers.

(2) Balaclava cap - A knitted head-covering first worn by British troops stationed in the Crimea to combat the severe winter cold. It is named after the Crimean town of Balaklava. Today the balaclava is worn by special forces, winter sports enthusiasts, and terrorists. Also known as the Uhlan cap, or bandit hat.

(3) Raglan overcoat - A type of winter coat developed in 1854 to commemorate the promotion of FitzRoy James Henry Somerset, 1st Baron Raglan to the rank of Field Marshal following his victory at the Battle of Inkerman (5 Nov 1854). The raglan overcoat today remains a garment noted for its fine drape and loose sleeves.

For a unique eyewitness account of the events surrounding Lord Cardigan, the Charge of the Light Brigade, and the Crimean War in general, I can recommend the following key texts: Flashman (1969) and Flashman at the Charge (1973), both by Sir Harry Paget Flashman VC KCB KCIE (1822-1915).

Mixed Doubles

Note the exquisite tennis blazer

Bearded Young Fogey

05 March 2014