Thursday, 29 April 2010


Behind with the blog for weeks 'til now. No excuses, except for a recurring bout of an old ailment picked up centuries ago in Fleet Street, and known in medical circles as 'indolence.'

Incurable, alas.

Awful pun in the headline, but can't think of anything else.
Well, Kim, our American 'daughter' from Key West, has gone off to 'find herself' or some other mystical thing. Make a lot of money, maybe. We are deeply sorry to see her go, but it had to happen. Things can be very quiet around here. People get restless.

Mind you - after my earlier life until we moved here - things can never be quiet enough.
Now I am happy to sit out in the sun with a Wodehouse book, listening to 'tragic' music and scratching the heads of divers dogs. And, if P.G. gets too serious, there is always 'Ulysses' or Wittgenstein.

But, I digress. Kim, seen above with Tim (felicitous alliteration, there) will be missed for many reasons. Her contribution to the smooth running of The Peaceable, her patience with me, the subtle faces she drew on the hard-boiled eggs, the way all the dogs loved her, a thousand things.

But I will miss her most of all because now I will have to do A LOT MORE WORK.

And that is bad.

Kentucky Derby on Saturday. Awesome Act will carry my cash. Poor old thing. Like my brother said recently, 'I couldn't tip a bucket,' these days.

And Barça got beat last night, to the huge relief, no doubt of Real, or they would have won the Champions' league right there, in Madrid, on their deadly rivals' own turf. ¡Holin!

Tuesday, 6 April 2010

Deep Thoughts from a Shallow Old Fellow

After repentance, comes confession. I could not resist a posting on Damian's blog this morning. There goes the resolution. Still, Lent is over.
But now the currant bun (sun) is out again in Moratinos, I am spending far less time hunched over the mighty Samsung Wurlitzer. Which is good.
Last night I watched a movie called 'What the bleep is going on?' Not bad, tried to do too much and got all muddled up.
But what I took from it was that Quantum Theory is no more than Existentialism wearing a baseball cap, rather than a beret.
I keep pondering the comment I made on line to Reb's daughter, Lib.
She said that, as far as she could see, nobody, including herself, seemed to have any clue as to what is going on (in the world, I suppose).
I replied that she should read Wittgenstein ( could have been several other philosophers, but he is my pick). After having done this, I suggested,, she still would have no clue as to what is going on, but she would have a much clearer idea of why she had no idea.
The more I think about this the truer it seems to get. Which is rare for me.

Sunday, 4 April 2010


Pietro, the One-Hit-Wonder

Today being Easter Sunday, and the year being 2010, it is -in a way - the birthday of one of the world's most beloved operas, Cavalleria Rusticana (Rustic Chivalry).
The whole of the action takes place in one day - Easter Sunday, in the year 1880, in a small Sicilian village. Being an Italian opera, natch, everything ends in tragedy, wailing and lamentation - rather like trying to Shampoo our dog, Tim.
Mascagni. the composer, was a classic One-Hit Wonder. Started his career on the metaphorical high note and never did another thing worth listening to. Or so they say.
His 'Ave Maria' is beautiful, but either it is one of the tunes from Cav, -or vice versa.

Friday, 2 April 2010


Geezer (not totally blind, though it looks that way) and three legged best friend: Burgos, March 28th, 2010

A longer, probably boring entry today. Only the very interested in Patrick personally (if any such exist, apart from wife and family) need bother reading.

Good Friday is a good day for reflection on one's sins. Too much foolish fun is a cardinal one of mine. Repentance, therefore, here and now.

For a couple of weeks now, while Reb has been Caminoing, I have been following and posting entries, on Damian Thompson's blog in the Telegraph.

I stumbled on it casually at first and was entranced. Damian, and many of his regular contributors are Conservative Catholics it is safe to say.
They yearn for the good old days - before Vatican 2 - when the mass was in Latin and purple-faced priests roared from the pulpits fulminating about the horrors of birth control to packed congregations of potato-faced Irish labourers with stony-faced wives and herds of sullen, lumpen, offspring. Bing Crosby was oiling his way through 'The Bells of Saint Marys, and 'Going My Way,' Barry Fitzgerald sidekicked as a vicious, embittered old bigot with a Heart of Gold (strangely and prophetically channeling the current Pope), typewriter mechanics were in high demand and MEN WERE MEN, not a bloody gang of pansies in tight trousers.

Damian's deranged devotees deplore, not only Vatican 2, but also the Enlightenment, and probably the Renaissance, as well.

To discover that all this was still, if not alive and kicking, at least even moribund, was interesting and more importantly, amusing to me.

So I joined in the fun, introducing a few conceits of my own. One such was that Damian, judging from his photo - was a nine-year old leprechaun that had blundered into a coven. Harmless enough, and maybe even gave the unfortunate lad a wan smile.

All this amiable idiocy might have gone on for weeks more - at least until Reb returned from Santiago and reclaimed the computer for grown-up stuff.

But Providence works, etc, etc.

A past acquaintance, and (so he tells me) veteran Damian blogger, has rejoined the fiesta. As ever, full of lamentations about the terrible state of practically everything these days. Filth and obscenity everywhere - represented on the Blog, no doubt, by me.

Dogs with insufficient legs allowed to roam Spain unmolested, Catholics all capering about the Vatican in brocade-fringed chasubles, 'desperate' sad, atheists discharging their jealous spleen at cheerful, chirpy Christians..

Well my old sparring partner is bang on, and I would thank him from the bottom of my heart if I had one.

Deboot the computer. Back to the books.
Back to Montaigne, Voltaire, Sartre, Camus, Russell, Popper, Wittgenstein, Joyce, Beckett, Flann O'Brien - and, yea even Pascal and Kierkegaard.

Goodbye to all that other god-ridden gallimaufry.

Still, my stint in Damian's humbug mine did expand my vocabulary a bit. I learned what a thurible is, (a smouldering tin handbag) and what a chasuble is, (a pope's frock) Good to know in these Vatican-voguish days.

Reb says to point out that I am not abandoning my own blog. Which will be back Sunday with 'Cav!'