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Silver Linings, Princess of the Spirits

Friday 17th January, dark skies and violent showers. The flooding finally reached "us" today, the Balcombe Tunnel closed this morning, misery for rail travellers, and the A23 closed at Bolney. How long has this been going on? I've lost track. Besides causing them to sleep twenty hours out of twenty four and suddenly get active at three am, it's playing merry hell with my cats' sanitary arrangements. Despite litter trays, even the good cat (that's Ginger) has been known, over the last six weeks or so, to look at the weather, first thing in the morning, and decide an al fresco wee isn't really necessary: hey, I'll just do it on the doormat, nearly outdoors; they'll never notice! The spray we bought to dissuade this activity has a list of DON'TS on the back label, including DO NOT SPRAY THE ANIMAL.

Huh? Insane. Whyever would anyone think of doing that? I wondered.

However, I've now been very close. Many thanks, thoughtful label writers. You saved me.

I finished Windwaker last night, after a long, fragmented time of voyaging on those oceans, klling Big Octos, madly sorting letters and clearing pirate infested reefs. Good game, I enjoyed it, but would not rate it with Twilight Princess or Ocarina of Time. Way ahead of Skyward Sword however. Next, I am planning to revisit Okami. Then decided to watch Princess Mononoke (Mononoke Hime), first time in a while: what a beautiful movie, unflinching, painful, pitch-perfect: the most serious and the best of all Studio Ghibli's productions, in my humble opinion. Now I'm pining to watch Spirited Away again, soon as possible.

Some good news (qualified) on the Gagging Law:

Long live clictivism. Used to be, my individual opinion meant nothing to nobody. All anyone wanted me to do was trot down to the Polling Station every now and then, and put my X next to the candidate from one of two or three (I mean, being serious) political parties. None of them (yes, I said none) gave a flying xxxx what I really thought or felt,on any specific policy or development, and none of them (yes, I said none) felt any obligation to keep any promises they made in the excitement of the chase: as long as I would check that box and keep them in power. Or get them into power, or at least keep their enemies out. But now, thanks to 38 degrees and all, I can say yes, I can say no! It's brilliant. I'm a bit in the world's machine!

Some ironic news (qualfied) from Greenpeace on the Celtique Energie proposal to raise an exploratory drill rig, with a view to hydraulic fracking, in the South Downs National Park. (WHAT???) The Park Authority was so unprepared for protest, a mere 1200 or so objections "broke" their website. But it's mended now. Comments on the proposal are still being accepted, until 22nd Jan.

Some interesting stuff on frack free Fernhurst's facebook page also, especially a discussion on what I've long suspected about this "exploratory drilling" bonanza:


Robert Hichens: Thanks to greywyvern for his comment. I'd forgotten all about The Green Carnation, until I saw it mentioned in the Wikipedia entry. I read it a long, long, time ago, liked it a lot and didn't realise it was defaming anybody's character at all. Now I want to read it again! My parents had a copy, with a green carnation on the spine, I remember: I think it must have been the 1948 edition. Gone with the wind, of course. My longtime favourite Hichens however is Bella Donna. I just discovered there's two movie versions, wonder if I'll seek them out.

The Malice Of Fortune Excellent antidote to the asinine Machiavelli feature in the BBC's current Imagine series (which I've found very hit and miss). Starring one of my favourite historical characters, plus Leonardo da Vinci (not such a sweetie), a historically verified incredibly beautiful courtesan, a serial killer and (Yes! You guessed it!) a whole slew, absolutely mountains, of viciously tortured and dismembered young women... Gets a bit repetitive going round and round in the middle, a few too many with one bound he was free moments, but I really like the way Ennis hides his "monster" in plain sight, by the simplest of sleight of hand, or rather pen. And the way he withholds his seriousness of purpose, to confound you with it in the end.

I find myself thinking, but stop jeering at this mad popular taste for the inventive slaughter of young women, Gwyneth. What if it's inescapable, the truth about the world? As true as what Freud found out, and then buried. What if it's one of the pillars of our universe?

Going out to see American Hustle tonight. Not my kind of movie really & I prefer the young or "Katniss" Jennifer Laurence (Winter's Bone), to the probably more true to life Hollywood luvvie (Silver Linings Playbook). But perhaps I'll enjoy it.


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