Friday, 25 April 2014

Stonehenge Decoded and other aspects of a Friday blog ramble

In the 1960s when I first visited Stonehenge as a teenager the basic plan was to insert tab A into slot B and try to comprehend some of the deep and meaningless aspects of the stones, whilst also trying to stop the top of ones head from unscrewing.

Anyway provoked by the enquiring minds of the youf of today I revisited the fundamental questions about Stonehenge. What does it do? and how does it do it?

Pretty obviously what happens is that the druid enters the stone circle between two stones and exits between another two into a different reality, I seem to remember at some time in the 60s there was a sign there saying “Do Not Adjust Your Mind, Reality Is At Fault” or something.  

How it does this is a bit difficult to put into words that will bridge the age gap, and drawing a diagram seemed to be a bit condescending, so I painted them a picture.

I thought I would start with a smaller henge with less stones, I have been putting off painting one with more stones as I get the feeling that something strange may happen.

One of the youf of today asked if it is an optical illusion, to which I answered, just a stone circle with all of the stones around the same size. Some measuring then followed and I was informed that that the upright one on the far right is much shorter, so it is an illusion. 

Always useful to the budding artist to encounter the aspiring art critic.

The life of the modern independent retailer is a tricky one, although to be honest that of the secondhand bookseller has always been somewhat tenuous. Despite wearing the uniform (socks and sandals) at 59 I haven’t yet managed to aspire to the dizzy heights of carpet slippers, but gather there will eventually be some sort of secret initiation ceremony involving the retriever of no returns. Despite maintaining a shop with a permanent look of “out to lunch”. I find I am still encountering customers and sometimes difficult customers.

In this case it was a lady who brought back a book of spells complaining that her broom wouldn’t fly; a refund, well obviously made that strange sucking noise between the teeth, always an indicator that something expensive is about to happen.

Anyway in this instance I withheld the ultimate retailer’s weapon (calling her madam) and explained that I had been selling spell books, man and boy for the last fifty years and no one had ever brought one back complaining that the spells didn’t work.

Unfortunately this approach failed, I have been threatened with no less that the trades descriptions act of 1968 and had to issue a refund of £2.50. In some ways this is quite a relief as the book in question is now safely back where it belongs.

 I have added a picture so you can share my relief that the book is now safely back on the shelf in my bookshop after its difficult and unsuccessful adventure.

While on the subject of not flying, since Ann Gloag (who in no way looks like a witch) pulled the magic carpet from under Manston, rumour has been flying round the world. One is that KLM were not actually having a public display of sour grapes but that when Boet Kreiken said. “Now it is game over; we will redeploy the aircraft. We are gone.” This was actually a euphemism for it just wasn’t profitable to run a passenger service from Manson.

Apparently Charles Buchanan has been seen standing on the not inconsiderable coastline of the Thanet transport hub brandishing a model aeroplane and extolling fish to buy airline tickets.  

Another rumour is that the big guns of the local Conservative party have found that the solution to not enough passengers is no passengers and are trying to broker a deal for a huge freight only hub at Manston.  
In the circumstances it may be as well that Ramsgate Sandys is going apparently there has been something of a Gale there over potential freight night flights as apparently magic mushrooms can only be moved at night.

No ramble would be complete without some reference to our own dear councils so I will drop the broomstick and concentrate on the legal highs for a while. At the moment socialist run TDC is working on the disposal of the last remaining high profile council owned Ramsgate building. As good socialists their master plan is to hand it to the largest capitalist they can find. I am told there will be no payment to TDC for the very long peppercorn rent apart from half the rental return on putting a farmers market – as far from the main car parks as possible – in the third of the building that isn’t to become the largest pub in Europe.

What we need here is the TDC Margate Tories to apply the magic solution of grant funding to turn it into the largest public venue in Ramsgate and if that fails the Kent Tories to use a good old fashioned socialist inspired subsidy, like the have with Turner Contemporary.

As things are looking once copious quantities of legal high have been imbibed and the customers have become naughtily inebriate, they will make their way past the bouncers and the regular policing on Harbour Parade to the takeaways in King Street where there is no apparent policing.

The council have licensed these until four in the morning so the worst of the political offenders – who are made to live there in social housing on the ground floor next to the street – will get no sleep whatsoever and are likely to step in an amusing pool of beer and kebab if they do venture out.  

Of course the council have just compulsorily purchased the huge old carpet shop there, but I guess this would be deemed as being far to close to the car park to be suitable for an indoor and farmers market.

Summer being just around the corner and yesterday being my day off, I decided to unfold our folding caravan, which has become a bit retro, by accident rather than design. I thought I had better check everything was ok before unfolding it at a campsite.

The instruction book says that one person can put it up in about 5 mins, it takes two of us about 10 but still amuses people at a campsite so here are the unfolding pictures.  

Now for some photos from the last few days I will endeavour to add some text to them if I get the time. 

Market day in Ramsgate today, something that has a place for all budgets
I tend to go for the Rooks meat or cheese and salad with salad roll, which is very good value at £1.99

As you may know with these rambles, I will add to it if I get time, it’s market day today and my bookshop is fairly busy, at this very moment I am dealing with a trades description issue relating to a lady who bought a book out of the occult section which has failed to make her broom fly.  

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Comments, since I started writing this blog in 2007 the way the internet works has changed a lot, comments and dialogue here were once viable in an open and anonymous sense. Now if you comment here I will only allow the comment if it seems to make sense and be related to what the post is about. I link the majority of my posts to the main local Facebook groups and to my Facebook account, “Michael Child” I guess the main Ramsgate Facebook group is We Love Ramsgate. For the most part the comments and dialogue related to the posts here goes on there. As for the rest of it, well this blog handles images better than Facebook, which is why I don’t post directly to my Facebook account, although if I take a lot of photos I am so lazy that I paste them directly from my camera card to my bookshop website and put a link on this blog.