Author Topic: Talk of the North Articles  (Read 2223 times)

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Bonyslad

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Talk of the North Articles
« on: September 16, 2011, 23:26:09 PM »
Just in case my hard drive crashes need to store my published Talk of the North Articles somewhere . Nothing to do with me being a self publicity seeking , immodest git , I can assure you

 BL  ;D ;D

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apenas un pensamiento pero ...just what is it that drives British men to discard their shirts at extremes of temperature ? Look at St James’s Park in the depth of January . Driving snow , players can see neither goal through the sleet but you can be guaranteed there will be a few fat bellies , completely topless , waving their scarves round their heads . Same happens in Mallorca , once temperatures pass through 25 C out they all come as though wearing a shirt displays a total absence of testosterone.

How times have changed , it’s not as though we have no choice in casual wear . Today, we have branded tee shirts, polos and more choice than ever in deciding what “ top “ suits each occasion . When Arfur and Lil first hit Mallorca back in the sixties things were very different . Arfur would remove his long sleeved shirt on the beach and be quite happy in his vest and Lil would tuck her dress in her knickers but walk around town with your legs exposed, never.

Obviously  has become a bit of a problem cos many signs up in bars and restaurants proclaiming “ No shirt, No service  “ now, but what drives em to do it ? Suppose it’s the old lack of UV up in the northern parts of Europe but that can hardly explain those foolhardy souls sitting with a strong , bitterly cold North Easterly blasting away at the footie. My mug of Oxo cools faster than the expression on Hillary’s face if you call her Mrs Clinton .
No , must be some kind of macho display of independence so Dave, Arfur’s son , given the total freedom of a holiday , with no guvnor around to order him about goes for it bigtime. Wander about on market day in Puerto Pollensa in the heat and it’s like visiting a mass chest x ray clinic where the radiologist just can’t keep up with the demand.

Completely opposite for the Guvnors . “You’re not going to wear that Blazer in this heat ? “ exclaims Caroline to Rupert as they set off for Sunday market in Pollensa and off he trots in blazer,long sleeved shirt, cravat and best panama. Sebastian , his son, who owns no casual wear at all, is besplendent in pair of cricket whites he has had since public school , pair of lace up black Oxford brogues and an old fashioned rugger shirt .

Now , before you accuse me of blatant classism , it was the American, Mark Twain , who said “ Clothes make the man, Naked people have little or no influence on society “ . Well the Yanks can hardly talk , ever walked through a shopping mall there to see plenty of examples of sartorial elegance?
Wonder what the old Generalissimo would have made of it all ? Understand you could get twenty years in the slammer if you dared put one foot on the Pine Walk wearing a bikini. It’s not as though clothes ain’t relatively cheap now compared with then. Took a  “grand “into Primark the other day and came out with two suits , six shirts, four tee shirts and three pairs of shorts. Still had £960 in me pocket !

Afraid shirtlessness in the streets winds people up no end here . Most talked about subject after the weather in my opinion . Only show my Doctor my chest and that’s only cos she’s mid thirties unless I’m on the playa . Keep beaches naked and the streets clothed , that’s my plea.

Strange Old World, innit ?


« Last Edit: September 16, 2011, 23:29:42 PM by Bonyslad »
BonysLad

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Bonyslad

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Re: Talk of the North Articles
« Reply #1 on: September 16, 2011, 23:28:27 PM »
apenas  un pensamiento pero ...what are we gonna take Nan back from us ‘olidays ?? . Probably not a lot of interest to the regular readers but a major point for those on holiday . Don’t know why the simple fact of being away from home for a couple of weeks necessitates the lavishing of such gifts but suppose , like Father’s Day, has become embedded in our culture. So what is on offer in the form of suitable mementoes ? Look around the various gift and tourist shops here and the answer not a lot comes to mind .

Didn’t really matter years ago cos a few sticks of rock would always suffice for the kids left at home or a nice box of toffees for the adults. It didn’t matter if they were massed produced in some sweet factory in Wolverhampton , as long as they had a nice picture on the box with Paignton or Scarborough or wherever on it, they always passed muster .Rock was a bit more tricky cos you were restricted by the number of letters that could be technically included in the stuff. OK if you were in Blackpool or Southend but Goodrington Sands was a bit different ballgame. Probably why we don’t see many examples of Port de Pollenca rock about the place . Number of letters would be a challenge alone so don’t know how they’d cope with that funny little squiggle under  the “ c “ ?

So what is exactly on offer to solve this problem ? Plenty of fridge magnets but hardly represent local culture . Those yellow naff signs which say “ I drink and then fall over “ , err , don’t think so . How about a brightly painted ashtray with Mallorca stamped on it ? Remember the time when you couldn’t step foot on Spanish soil without returning to Luton Airport with a great big sombrero, a Don Quixote Giant Fork tucked under your arm , clacking away with castanets . Oh how we larfed at the time. Don’t think “Puerto Pollensa in the Snow “ shakers would be very true to real life either, do you ?
So where do you look ? Probably the markets would be a good point of call . Nice carved olive oil wood bowls for the discerning or a vintage triple star olive oil . Loads and loads of trinkets as well but these are imported from the Far East so hardly ethnic. Don’t think Nan would look too good in one of those red Flamenco dresses with the large black spots shopping down at Tesco .

Years ago you couldn’t get within a hundred yards of a religious establishment without the offer of a artefact , mostly completely tasteless. However if this is your bent get yourselves to one of the Chinese Emporia around the place. Amazing stock of religious souvenirs, seen more Virgin Marys in these than within a ten mile radius of Lourdes.

Fraid I can’t help much further to relieve that nagging worry that is going to haunt your holiday but good luck hunting . Souvenir hunting is a real minefield for sociology studies. You will buy what you are .

So don’t despair, Nan will be completely happy with 200 Benson & Hedges and a giant box with an Ensemada in it that you grabbed at the airport home.
Strange old World , innit ?
BonysLad

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Bonyslad

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Re: Talk of the North Articles
« Reply #2 on: October 11, 2011, 20:05:49 PM »
Apenas un pensamiento pero ... say cheese and face the camera . Don’t hear this so much these days cos of all the technological advances probably the one that hits most people first is the taking of holiday photos.

Years ago , when Arfur and Lil came out for their ‘olidays the old Brownie compact  was shown the light of day . Easy to load cos you just slipped the film end into the sprocket ( Lil had drawn the curtains just in case Arfur was a bit too generous in feeding it out ). A fortnight later with all the happy snaps taken , Arfur went back to work and Lil headed for Boots with the little spool , their holiday memories encapsulated into twenty four little images captured on that little bit of plastic and metal. It always took a few days to be developed so by Thursday evening , much excitement as the envelope of developed films were on the tea table for Arfur’s return from work.

And boy, were we disappointed . Of the twenty four shots , five were complete blanks , six had Arfur’s thumbprint over the views of the Pine Walk , seven were shot straight into the sun so Lil looked like the Angel Gabriel in a nativity play despite wearing one of those new fangled bikinis from Marks & Spencer .

Totally different these days . Dave , their son, takes a picture on his mobile phone of little Chardonnay in her sun protection suit on the beach and within seconds it’s winging it’s way back to Blighty over cyberspace to Nan , who having mastered the internet is straight away forwarding it by e mail to all her mates.

Unbelievable , but very, very true . Just amazing how we have gone from A to B in a few years . However ,somethings , alas, remain the same. Come on own up , how many of us actually look at our photos more than once ? . Remember those “ Good lord, Dear , is that the time?” moments when our friends over coffee would insist on showing their holiday photos . Well those moments are now 24/7 cos they are carried around on mobile phones these days so there’s no escape from people waving their phones in your face and shouting “ Here’s us in Mallorca !! “.

So we keep them all on our hard discs , and never, ever look at them again . At least we’ve solved the problem of where you keep those photo albums . Salutary lesson was when I downsized seriously a couple of years ago and I culled my whole life down to just 80 photos . Throwing the wedding album out was just a step too far, so that survived, cos my wife gave me funny looks at the time. Total sympathy with those Desert Island Discs guests who have to choose just eight records to reflect their , often, spectacular lives .  I’ll own up and say “ Agadoo “ is on my list cos it makes me happy and a darn site more tuneful than Brahms.

It’s wonderful what technology has brought us now , but are we any the happier for it ??

Strange old World , innit ?

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BonysLad

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