Post Tagged as ‘Articles’

Breathe In! by Paul Scott

  • By Gail Norris
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  • November 3, 2011

“Genius,” said Thomas Edison, “is one per cent inspiration and ninety-nine per cent perspiration.” I find myself nodding in agreement. A lot of nonsense is talked about inspiration. “I write only when I am inspired,” claim certain people, which often means they never write at all. It makes me think of Peter de Vries (a successful author) who said, “I write only when I am inspired, and I make a point of being inspired at preciselynine o’clockevery morning.” Any type of creative work, whether it involves writing, painting, gardening, or inEdison’s case inventing, requires a great deal of good sustained […]

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‘Upheaval’ by Toni Scott

  • By Gail Norris
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  • September 30, 2011

Fraudulent expense claims, phone tapping, riots, civil unrest, demonstrations – and August is supposed to be the “Silly Season” when nothing much happens! It seems that, however much the organisers intend to demonstrate peacefully, too often a group of people join in (Rent-a-Mob?) with the intention of making trouble. In fact, on the radio recently I heard someone saying that, as a teenager, she and her friends went on CND marches “because they were fun.” She admitted that they none of them had the slightest interest in nuclear disarmament. It turns out that at the riots in August three-quarters of […]

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The Other Side of the Signboard by Paul Scott

  • By Gail Norris
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  • September 3, 2011

Have you ever been accused of passing the buck? Of course not! I can’t imagine that any of my readers would ever be guilty of shrugging off their responsibilities. But had you ever wondered where this expression comes from?   What does it really mean? Is it to do with a male deer, or does it mean passing a dollar bill around (“Making a fast buck”)? Well, both stags and money come into it. It all goes back to the game of poker. Back in the second half of the nineteenth century, poker was a popular game in the States. […]

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Cameras or Mirrors? by Paul Scott

  • By Gail Norris
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  • June 9, 2011

Would you like a good conversation-stopper? Why not try this? When there is a slight lull in the chatter, say thoughtfully, “I wonder – do we consider ourselves as cameras or as mirrors?” When everyone looks baffled, you can explain that, while cameras simply record, mirrors reflect. Cameras can keep their findings locked up in themselves; mirrors share what they have seen. A good idea of how we can act as cameras is given in Christopher Isherwood‘s novel Goodbye to Berlin. On the first page, the main character comments, “I am a camera with its shutter open, quite passive, recording, […]

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‘Popularity’ by Paul Scott

  • By Gail Norris
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  • June 9, 2011

Many years ago I knew a young man who seemed unable to say “No”. This meant that he was unable to keep appointments as, if he was asked to do something for his father or a friend, he would do to to the detriment of anyone he was due to meet. Apart from this, he was (or could be when he wished) charming, considerate and fun to be with. We all have to make choices, but why, I wondered, did he invariably choose a recent request rather than apologising and saying that he was seeing someone in half an hour […]

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Divine Guidance or Coincidence? by Toni Scott

  • By Gail Norris
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  • June 9, 2011

Before coming to Swanmore, Paul and I lived, for many years, in Woking. It was an agreeable place and, by the time we left, had a large theatre with all the latest bells and whistles. This had the advantage of being in a complex where there were car parks, shops, cinemas, and, at one time, a nightclub. So why did we move? We had both retired; our children and our fathers (who lived with us) had moved on and our house and garden were too large. We were also getting older and in danger of being in a rut. It […]

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These Foolish Things by Paul Scott

  • By Gail Norris
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  • April 3, 2011

The Guardian publishes a seven page supplement about San Serriffe, a small republic said to consist of several semi-colon-shaped islands located in the Indian Ocean. Its main islands are called Upper Caisse and Lower Caisse… At a time when Swedish television was still in black and white, a technical expert announces that viewers could watch programmes in colour by pulling a nylon stocking over the screen… The British astronomer Patrick Moore tells people that, due to an unusual planetary alignment that would counteract the effect of gravity, if they jumped in the air at precisely 9.47 am, they would experience […]

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