On the bus into Edinburgh’s New Town yesterday, I was reflecting on a short story I’ve been working on, a historical fiction about the Ross-shire Sheep Riots (also known as the – ten-day long – Year Of The Sheep). As the name suggests, it’s set in Scotland. My work tends to be set most often there, or in NYC, or in some imagined hybrid of the two.
Phew! That was quite a weekend! On Friday evening, I had the great pleasure of co-hosting the launch of the chapbook In Failure & In Ruins by my friend, former Into the Void Poetry Competition winner Mark Bolsover.
The next day, Mrs Stroke Bloke and I headed through to Glasgow to see the latest production from Kneehigh Theatre, whose Mayday Mayday had such an effect on us in the months after my stroke.
My love for BBC Radio 4’s PM programme, as hosted by Eddie Mair, is well-documented on this website (1, 2). During #indyref the first, I remember him conducting one of the better interviews I heard with Scotland’s First Minister.
Over the last two weeks, Stroke Bloke has reported from Berlin and London on modern iterations of democracy. Today, a report from closer to home…
Last week’s post, Monarchy had a hint of the oracle about it. I asked
Can Angela [Eagle] fit 172 Labour Party MPs in her tiny battle bus before its square wheels fall off?
And that very night, the Labour Party’s National executive committee voted to allow Jeremy Corbyn, as the incumbent leader of the party, to enter the party’s leadership election without having to collect the nominations of 50 of his MPs and MEPs.
I’ve been trying to tell myself that it’s too early for an #EURef post. But even now, still two-and-a-half weeks out, the media coverage is suffocating. It’s hard to focus on anything else. Europe touches so much that goes on in the blog.
Last week, Mrs Stroke Bloke and I had just returned from our trip to Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland. One thing that really caught our eyes – other than the crazy number of Deloreans on the ferry from Cairnryan to Belfast – was the ease of crossing the border.
[Enjoy apoplectic.me? Get close and personal with the Apoplexy Tiny Letter here.]
Well, if there’s one thing that this week’s news has encouraged me to do, it’s go off and listen to some good music. With a hat-tip to Longsufferingreaderoftheblogpaul for sharing it aaaaages ago, here’s Reggie Watts’ cover of Van Halen’s Panama:
Where the original is – I’m told – about a race car, Reggie’s version is about the country. What do you think about, when you think about Panama?