The Edmondson Blog

Things Confucius Might Have Said

  • Man who wants pretty nurse must be patient.
  • Passionate kiss like spider web leads to undoing of fly.
  • Better to be pissed off than pissed on.
  • Lady who goes camping must beware of evil intent.
  • Squirrel who runs up woman’s leg will not find nuts.
  • Man who leaps off cliff jumps to conclusion.
  • Man who runs in front of car gets tired, man who runs behind car gets exhausted.
  • Man who eats many prunes gets good run for money.
  • War does not determine who is right, it determines who is left.
  • Man who fight with wife all day get no piece at night.
  • It takes many nails to build a crib but one screw to fill it.
  • Man who drives like hell is bound to get there.
  • Man who stands on toilet is high on pot.
  • Man who lives in glass house should change clothes in basement.
  • Man who fish in other man's well often catch crabs.
And the very best:
  • A lion will not cheat on his wife but a Tiger Wood!
  • Alcohol does not solve any problem but then...neither does milk.

A Day Made Of Glass

The Ruined Maid

“O ’Melia, my dear, this does everything crown!
Who could have supposed I should meet you in Town?
And whence such fair garments, such prosperi-ty?”
“O didn’t you know I’d been ruined?” said she.

“You left us in tatters, without shoes or socks,
Tired of digging potatoes, and spudding up docks;
And now you’ve gay bracelets and bright feathers three!”
“Yes: that's how we dress when we’re ruined,” said she.

“At home in the barton you said ‘thee’ and ‘thou,’
And ‘thik oon,’ and ‘theas oon,’ and ‘t’other;’ but now
Your talking quite fits ’ee for high compa-ny!”
“Some polish is gained with one’s ruin,” said she.

“Your hands were like paws then, your face blue and bleak
But now I’m bewitched by your delicate cheek,
And your little gloves fit as on any la-dy!”
“We never do work when we’re ruined,” said she.

“You used to call home-life a hag-ridden dream,
And you’d sigh, and you’d sock; but at present you seem
To know not of megrims or melancho-ly!”
“True. One’s pretty lively when ruined,” said she.

“I wish I had feathers, a fine sweeping gown,
And a delicate face, and could strut about Town!”
“My dear a raw country girl, such as you be,
Cannot quite expect that. You ain’t ruined,” said she.
Thomas Hardy.

The Star Spangled Banner

In 1812 the USA declared war on Britain for a number of reasons including a desire to occupy parts of Canada and the Brits press-ganging American citizens into the Royal Navy. In 1814 British troops marched on Washington D.C. and burned down the White House. Then they sailed for Baltimore, taking a civilian prisoner with them – a Dr. William Beanes.

The next day, Francis Scott Key, a prominent young lawyer from Washington, met with British military commanders and persuaded them to release Beanes. However, the British would not let Key go until the planned bombardment of Baltimore’s Fort McHenry was over. So he was detained on the British boat overnight.

During the night, Key got a first-hand look at the raging battle. He assumed that the British would take Baltimore, as they had Washington. But in the morning, he awoke to find that the American flag was still flying over Fort McHenry.

Inspired by the American defence, he jotted down an emotional poem:
Oh, say can you see, by the dawn’s early light,
What so proudly we hail’d at the twilight’s last gleaming?
Whose broad stripes and bright stars, thro’ the perilous fight,
O’er the ramparts we watch’d were so gallantly streaming?
And the rockets’ red glare, the bombs bursting in air,
Gave proof thro’ the night that our flag was still there.
Oh, say, does that Star Spangled Banner yet wave
O’er the land of the free and home of the brave?

On the shore, dimly seen thro’ the mists of the deep,
Where the foe’s haughty host in dread silence reposes,
What is that which the breeze, o’er the towering steep,
As it fitfully blows half conceals, half discloses?
Now it catches the gleam of the morning’s first beam,
In full glory reflected now shines on the stream;
‘Tis the Star Spangled Banner, Oh long may it wave
O’er the land of the free and home of the brave!

Oh, thus be it ever when freemen shall stand
Between their lov’d homes and the war’s desolation!
Blest with vict’ry and peace, may the heav’n rescued land
Praise the Pow’r that hath made and preserved us a nation!
Then conquor we must, when our cause it is just,
And this be our motto, “In God is our trust.”
And the Star Spangled Banner in triumph shall wave
O’er the land of the free and home of the brave!
The next day, Key showed the poem to his wife’s sister. She found it so inspiring that she took it to a printer, made hand-bills, and circulated the poem around Baltimore. The next week, the Baltimore American newspaper became the first to publish it.

The poem fitted the melody of The Anacreontic Song, a British drinking song and the official song of the Anacreontic Society, an 18th-century gentlemen's club of amateur musicians in London:
To Anacreon in Heav’n, where he sat in full glee,
A few Sons of Harmony sent a petition;
That he their Inspirer and Patron would be;
When this answer arrived from the Jolly Old Grecian;
“Voice, Fiddle, and Flute, No longer be mute,
I’ll lend you my name and inspire you to boot,
And besides I’ll instruct you like me, to intwine,
The Myrtle of Venus with Bacchus’s Vine.”
The Star Spangled Banner did not become the American National Anthem until 1931 after being voted down in 1929 because of the British tune, and it being a poor marching song.

Meanwhile, In The Village Store ...

Old School Tie

Editor’s true story.

When I was in the fifth form at school, narrow ties were all the fashion. One or two boys had altered their school tie to conform to this fashion and a strict edict was sent out that everybody must wear the standard width school uniform tie, as bought from Gorringe’s, the department store in Holborn that stocked the uniform. Being a dedicated follower of fashion (the Kinks were in the hit parade with Dedicated Follower Of Fashion) I pondered the iniquity of it all. At the time, the fashion for tying ties was to have the narrow, back end quite short and tucked into your shirt between the top and next buttons, and then the front end long and tucked into the trouser top. Very fashionable.

After some experimentation, I discovered that by reversing the tie and wearing it back to front (or more accurately, up-side-down), fashion could be followed by having the narrow end at the front. It became clear that the wide end would not knot properly if the tie was reversed in this way, but by folding the wide end over lengthwise (and ironing it so it would stay put) the knotting difficulty could be overcome. Best of all, I could claim with complete truth that no alterations hade been made to the tie — it was still the standard width school uniform tie as bought from Gorringe’s.

I realised, of course, that I would quickly be challenged about the tie and I had resolved to act innocently to any enquiry while keeping the actual explanation back as long as possible.

Almost immediately, my form-master spotted my narrow tie.

“Edmondson, you know you have to wear a standard tie.”

“I am, sir.”

“Bought from Gorringe’s?”

“Yes, sir.”


Off he went and I thought the conversation closed. However, the next day he sought me out, “I have spoken to Gorringe’s on the telephone and they assure me they only sell standard width school uniform ties.”

“It is a standard width school uniform tie, sir.”

“You know you must not alter them.”

“I haven’t, sir.”

“Then can you explain why your tie is narrower than everybody else’s?”

“It’s the way I tie it, sir.”

“The way you tie it?” he asked in exasperation, “What knot are you using?”

“A Windsor knot, sir.”

“Don’t be stupid, boy, how does a Windsor knot make it narrower?”

“It doesn’t, sir.”

“Don’t mess me about, Edmondson, why is your tie narrower than everybody else’s?”

The game was up.

“I have it on back to front, sir,” I replied showing the folded over wide end tucked into my shirt.

The poor old boy nearly exploded, “You can’t wear your tie that way!”

“Sorry, sir, I didn’t realise.”

The Heaviest Element Known To Science

Scientists at the world famous Cavendish Laboratory in Cambridge have discovered the heaviest element yet known to science.

The new element, Governmentium (Gv), has one neutron, 25 assistant neutrons, 88 deputy neutrons, and 198 assistant deputy neutrons, giving it an atomic mass of 312. These 312 particles are held together by forces called morons, which are surrounded by vast quantities of lepton-like particles called peons.

Since Governmentium has no electrons, it is inert; however, it can be detected because it impedes every reaction with which it comes into contact. A tiny amount of Governmentium can cause a reaction that would normally take less than a second, to take from 4 days to 4 years to complete. Governmentium has a normal half-life of two to five years. It does not decay, but instead undergoes a reorganization in which a portion of the assistant neutrons and deputy neutrons exchange places. In fact, Governmentium's mass will actually increase over time, since each reorganization will cause more morons to become neutrons, forming isodopes.

This characteristic of morons promotion leads some scientists to believe that Governmentium is formed whenever morons reach a critical concentration. This hypothetical quantity is referred to as critical morass.

When catalysed with money, Governmentium becomes Administratium, an element that radiates just as much energy as Governmentium since it has half as many peons but twice as many morons.

Perfect Timing

Meanwhile, Out Along The Railroad ...

Meanwhile, Some Snapshots From Around The Village ...

The Surprising Truth About What Motivates Us

Meanwhile, At The Hotel Du Vin ...

Your Editor and family dined at The Hotel Du Vin in Tunbridge Wells on Saturday night and noticed this comment in the visitors' book. (We were on the way to the fabulously art deco Assembly Hall to see In The Flesh, a great Pink Floyd tribute band - ahhh, such are the memories of my youth!)

Meanwhile, Down In The Jungle ...

St Valentine's Day On Google

Love Poetry

A woman's love poem:

Before I lay me down to sleep,
I pray for a man who's not a creep,
One who's handsome, smart and strong.
One who loves to listen long,
One who thinks before he speaks,
One who'll call, not wait for weeks.
I pray he's rich and self-employed,
And when I spend, won't be annoyed.
Pull out my chair and hold my hand..
Massage my feet and help me stand.
Oh send a king to make me queen.
A man who loves to cook and clean.
I pray this man will love no other.
And relish visits with my mother.

A man's love poem:

I pray for a deaf-mute gymnast nymphomaniac with
big tits who owns a bar on a golf course,
and loves to send me fishing and drinking. This
doesn't rhyme and I don't give a shit.

Buffalo Theory

A herd of buffalo can only move as fast as the slowest animal in the herd, and when the herd is hunted, it is the slowest and weakest animals that get killed first. This natural selection is good for the herd as a whole, because the general speed and health of the group keeps improving by the regular killing of the weakest members.

In much the same way, the human brain can only operate as fast as the slowest brain cells. Now, as we know, excessive intake of alcohol kills brain cells. A little thought will show that it is obvious that the alcohol attacks the slowest and weakest brain cells first. In this way regular consumption of alcohol eliminates the weaker brain cells, making the brain a faster and more efficient machine.

That’s why you feel cleverer and more able to critically comment on the world around you after a few beers.
Norm’s Buffalo Theory from Cheers.

Recent Egyptian Fashions In Headgear

During the recent troubles in Cairo, the Egyptians have shown a remarkable ability to adapt everyday objects into makeshift helmets.

Your Editor is not sure about this fellow, with a ham sandwich and
two baguettes cling-filmed to his head for protection. Hmm.

Economic Theory

An occasional explanation of modern Economic Theory,
Part 28 - As explained by the British Medical Council

Considering the present Government's economic policies, the Allergists voted to scratch them, but the Dermatologists advised not to make any rash moves.

The Gastro-enterologists had a sort of a gut feeling about them, but the neurologists thought the Government had a lot of nerve.

The Obstetricians felt they were all labouring under a misconception.

Ophthalmologists considered the ideas short-sighted.

Pathologists yelled, "Over my dead body!" while the Paediatricians said, "Oh, Grow up!"

The Psychiatrists thought the policies were madness, while the Radiologists could see right through them.

The Surgeons were fed up with the cuts and decided to wash their hands of the whole thing.

The ENT specialists didn't swallow it, and just wouldn’t hear of it.

The Pharmacologists thought they were a bitter pill to swallow, and the Plastic Surgeons said, "This puts a whole new face on the matter ..."

The Podiatrists thought it was a step forward, but the Urologists were pissed off at the whole idea.

The Anaesthetists thought the whole idea was a gas, but the Cardiologists didn't have the heart to say no.

But in the end, the Proctologists won out, leaving the entire decision up to the arseholes in London.

George Harrison's Pirate Song

Rutland Weekend Television was a spoof TV sketch show from the mid '70s about a tiny underfunded television station (from Rutland that only transmitted at weekends). Here is George Harrison singing The Pirate Song.

King Arthur And The Witch

Young King Arthur was ambushed and imprisoned by the monarch of a neighbouring kingdom. The monarch could have killed him but was moved by Arthur's youth and ideals. So, the monarch offered him his freedom, as long as he could answer a very difficult question. Arthur would have a year to figure out the answer and, if after a year, he still had no answer, he would be put to death..

The question: "What do women really want?"

Such a question would perplex even the most knowledgeable man, and to young Arthur, it seemed an impossible query. But, since it was better than death, he accepted the monarch's proposition to have an answer by year's end.

He returned to his kingdom and began to poll everyone: the princess, the priests, the wise men and even the court jester. He spoke with everyone, but no one could give him a satisfactory answer.

Many people advised him to consult the Old Witch, for only she would have the answer.

But the price would be high; as the Old Witch was famous throughout the kingdom for the exorbitant prices she charged.

The last day of the year arrived and Arthur had no choice but to talk to the Old Witch. She agreed to answer the question, but he would have to agree to her price first.

The Old Witch wanted to marry Sir Lancelot, the most noble of the Knights of the Round Table and Arthur's closest friend!

Young Arthur was horrified. She was hunchbacked and hideous, had only one tooth, smelled like sewage, made obscene noises, and voted Lib-Dem. He had never encountered such a repugnant creature in all his life.

He refused to force his friend to marry her and endure such a terrible burden; but Lancelot, learning of the proposal, spoke with Arthur.

He said nothing was too big of a sacrifice compared to Arthur's life and the preservation of the Round Table.

Hence, a wedding was proclaimed and the Old Witch answered Arthur's question thus, "What a woman really wants," she answered, "Is to be in charge of her own life."

Everyone in the kingdom instantly knew that the Old Witch had uttered a great truth and that Arthur's life would be spared.

And so it was, the neighbouring monarch granted Arthur his freedom and Lancelot and the Old Witch had a wonderful wedding.

The honeymoon hour approached and Lancelot, steeling himself for a horrific experience, entered the bedroom. But, what a sight awaited him. The most beautiful woman he had ever seen lay before him on the bed. The astounded Lancelot asked what had happened.

The beauty replied that since he had been so kind to her when she appeared as a witch, she would henceforth, be her horrible deformed self only half the time and the beautiful maiden the other half.

Which would he prefer? Beautiful during the day ... or during the night?

Lancelot pondered the predicament. During the day, a beautiful woman to show off to his friends, but at night, in the privacy of his castle, an ugly crone? Or, would he prefer having a hideous witch during the day, but by night, a beautiful woman for him to enjoy wondrous intimate moments?

What would YOU do?

What Lancelot chose is below.

BUT ... make YOUR choice before you scroll down below.


Noble Lancelot said that he would allow HER to make the choice herself.

Upon hearing this, she announced that she would be beautiful all the time because he had respected her enough to let her be in charge of her own life.

Now ... what is the moral to this story?

The moral is ... If you don't let a woman have her own way, things are going to get ugly!

Meanwhile, At The Village Wishing Well ...

Beer Research

Scientists for Health UK suggested that, considering the results of a recent analysis that revealed the presence of female hormones in beer, men should take a concerned look at their beer consumption.

The theory is that beer contains female hormones (since hops contain phytoeostrogens) and drinking it may turn men into women.

To test the theory, 100 men were given 6 pints of beer each to drink within a one hour period.

It was then observed that 100% of the men:
  • Gained weight,
  • Talked excessively without making sense,
  • Became overly emotional,
  • Couldn't drive,
  • Failed to think rationally,
  • Argued over nothing,
  • Refused to apologize when obviously wrong,
  • And had to sit down while urinating.
No further testing was considered necessary.

Village Photo From Yesteryear ...

I mean seriously, wouldn’t you just keep drinking?

Economic Theory

An occasional explanation of modern Economic Theory,
Part 55B - United States of America, 1802.
I believe that banking institutions are more dangerous to our liberties than standing armies.

If the American people ever allow private banks to control the issue of their currency, first by inflation, then by deflation, the banks and corporations that will grow up around the banks will deprive the people of all property until their children wake-up homeless on the continent their fathers conquered.
Thomas Jefferson 1802

The Stuff Of Dreams ...

Those of you who know the Editor well will know that he has spent a major part of his life on the quest for the definitive cheeseburger. Here are some snaps from along this long and winding journey.

Second World War - Final End

The Allies demanded unconditional surrender of the Japanese.

Faced with the prospect of an invasion of the Japanese home islands, the Imperial Headquarters concluded, “We can no longer direct the war with any hope of success. The only course left is for Japan’s one hundred million people to sacrifice their lives by charging the enemy to make them lose the will to fight.”

In February 1945, Prince Konoe Fumimaro warned the Emperor that if the war continued, the Imperial house might be in greater danger from an internal revolution than from defeat. The Emperor replied that it was premature to seek peace, “…Unless we make one more military gain.”

In April 1945, the Fundamental Policy of the Japanese government was reiterated as being to fight on, and to choose honourable death of the hundred million over surrender.

In June, the Emperor lost confidence in the chances of achieving a military victory. The battle of Okinawa was lost, and he learned of the weakness of the Japanese army in China, of the navy, and of the army defending the Home Islands.

On 12th July, the Japanese Foreign Minister stated, “His Majesty the Emperor, mindful of the fact that the present war daily brings greater evil and sacrifice upon the peoples of all the belligerent powers, desires from his heart that it may be quickly terminated. But so long as England and the United States insist upon unconditional surrender, the Japanese Empire has no alternative but to fight on with all its strength for the honour and existence of the Motherland.”

On 17th July, the Foreign Minister stated, “Although the directing powers, and the government as well, are convinced that our war strength still can deliver considerable blows to the enemy, we are unable to feel absolutely secure peace of mind ... Please bear particularly in mind, however, that we are not seeking … mediation for anything like an unconditional surrender.”

On 21st July the Cabinet stated, “With regard to unconditional surrender we are unable to consent to it under any circumstances whatever.”

The Allies confirmed their position in an ultimatum given on 26th July, “We call upon the government of Japan to proclaim now the unconditional surrender of all Japanese armed forces, and to provide proper and adequate assurances of their good faith in such action. The alternative for Japan is prompt and utter destruction.”

On 27th July, the Japanese Prime Minister stated, “[The ultimatum] … is nothing but a rehash of [an earlier declaration]. As for the Government, it does not find any important value in it; the government will just mokusatsu it. We will do nothing but press on to the bitter end to bring about a successful completion of the war.”

The meaning of the word mokusatsu, literally “kill with silence,” is not precise; it can range from “ignore” to “treat with contempt” — which actually described fairly accurately the range of effective reactions within the government. However, the statement was taken as a clear rejection by the press, both in Japan and abroad, and no further statement was made in public or through diplomatic channels to alter this understanding.

The atom bomb, Little Boy, was dropped on Hiroshima at 8.15am on 6th August 1945. Later that morning confused reports reached Tokyo that Hiroshima had been the target of an air raid, which had levelled the city with a “blinding flash and violent blast.”

Later that day, U.S. President Harry S. Truman’s broadcast was received, announcing the first use of an atomic bomb, and promising, “We are now prepared to obliterate rapidly and completely every productive enterprise the Japanese have ... It was to spare the Japanese from utter destruction that the ultimatum of July 26th was issued. Their leaders promptly rejected that ultimatum. If they do not now accept our terms they may expect a rain of ruin from the air, the like of which has never been seen on Earth.”

At 4am on 9th August, word reached Tokyo that the Soviet Union had broken the neutrality pact and had entered the War against Japan.

The twin shocks of the destruction of Hiroshima and the Soviet entry had immediate profound effects on the Japanese Prime and Foreign Ministers who agreed that the government must end the War at once. However, the senior leadership of the Imperial Japanese Army took the news in its stride, grossly underestimating the scale of the attack. With the support of the Minister of War, the army started preparing to impose martial law to stop anyone attempting to make peace.

The Cabinet met at 10:30am on 9th August. In the middle of the meeting, news arrived that Nagasaki had been hit by Fat Man, the second atom bomb. By the time the meeting ended, the cabinet were split over what to do.

The Cabinet met again on 13th August but were still deadlocked.

Eventually, at noon on 15th August, the Emperor’s recorded speech to the nation, the Imperial Rescript on Surrender, was broadcast:
“... Despite the best that has been done by everyone — the gallant fighting of the military and naval forces, the diligence and assiduity of Our servants of the State, and the devoted service of Our one hundred million people — the war situation has developed not necessarily to Japan’s advantage, while the general trends of the world have all turned against her interest.

“Moreover, the enemy has begun to employ a new and most cruel bomb, the power of which to do damage is, indeed, incalculable, taking the toll of many innocent lives. Should we continue to fight, not only would it result in an ultimate collapse and obliteration of the Japanese nation, but also it would lead to the total extinction of human civilization.

“Such being the case, how are We to save the millions of Our subjects, or to atone Ourselves before the hallowed spirits of Our Imperial Ancestors? This is the reason why We have ordered the acceptance of the provisions of the Joint Declaration of the Powers.

“The hardships and sufferings to which Our nation is to be subjected hereafter will be certainly great. We are keenly aware of the inmost feelings of all of you, Our subjects. However, it is according to the dictates of time and fate that We have resolved to pave the way for a grand peace for all the generations to come by enduring the unendurable and suffering what is insufferable.”

Following the signing of the Instrument of Surrender, many further surrender ceremonies took place across Japan’s remaining holdings in the Pacific. With many Japanese troops still fighting the Allied troops, often in remote areas, it took until the spring of 1946 for all major units to actually lay down their arms. Some individuals, especially on small Pacific Islands, refused to surrender at all (believing the declaration to be propaganda or simply considering the act too much against their code). Some may never have heard of it. The last known survivor emerged from his hidden retreat on Mindoro, Philippines in 1980, while two other Japanese soldiers, who had joined communist guerrillas at the end of the war, fought in southern Thailand until 1991.

Moral And Ethical Dilemma

You are driving down the road in your car on a wild, stormy night, when you pass by a bus stop and you see three people waiting for the bus:
  • An old lady who looks as if she is about to die.
  • An old friend who once saved your life.
  • The perfect partner you have been dreaming about.
Which one would you choose to offer a ride to, knowing that there could only be one passenger in your car? Think before you continue reading.

This is clearly a moral and ethical dilemma. You could pick up the old lady, because she is going to die, and thus you should save her first. Or you could take the old friend because he once saved your life, and this would be the perfect chance to pay him back. However, you may never be able to find your perfect mate again.

The clever answer is to give the car keys to the old friend and let him take the lady to the hospital. You can then stay behind and wait for the bus with the partner of your dreams.

However, sometimes, we gain more if we are able to give up our stubborn thought limitations.

The best answer is to run the old lady over and put her out of her misery, have sex with the perfect partner on the bonnet of the car, then drive off with the old friend for a few beers.

Choose Your Boozing Companions Carefully!

© 2007 The Edmondson Blog