Andrew: Too many to mention. And reviewing that, I see that Bates appeared as Harry Flashman in a
movie. I didn’t even know there WAS a Flashman movie!!! How did I miss
One of my favorite actors, Alan Bates, has been elevated to the knightage in
the Queen’s New Year honours list. Among countless other roles, Bates was a
perfect Gabriel Oak in “Far From the Madding Crowd” (he was Gabriel ...
Isn’t the story about the Powerball winner
a lovely one to end the
year on? Andrew Jackson (!) Whittaker, Jr. sounds like a gem of a man. His
first thought seems to have been to tithe to his church from ...
Burn in Hell, Sonny Carson
A little late, I have just noted the death last Friday of Sonny Carson, one
of the nastiest of the 1960s generation of white-hating black militants.
Carson’s most famous sound-bite was this one, in response to someone who’d
Someone should remind this guy
what happened to Thomas a Becket.
Ubi Est, Mors, Stimulus Tuus?
Derb is now celebrating that fine old tradition known in England as “Boxing
Day hangover.” Aaaaaaarrrgh.
Christmas Day, 6:30 pm. Just woke from a doze on the sofa, brought on
(doze, not sofa) by a surfeit of Pennsylvania Dutch brandy-fortified egg
nog. Nice log fire burning. From the kitchen, wonderful dinner-soon smells
wafting. The Christmas Tree is ...
Great Questions of Our Time
For a long time I thought that the greatest unsolved problem of our age was
whether, factoring in wear & tear, cost of electricity & so on, it was
better to leave one’s computer on all the time or switch it ...
Andrew: Not the least wonderful thing about Jan Morris’s compulsively
readable history of the British Empire is that I am in it. Check the
index of Volume 2. The Stuttafords, I am very sorry to say, seem to ...
Everybody Talks About The Weather, But...
Steady rain all day here on Lawn-Guy Land. Just what I needed. I have
recently had a new cesspool system installed, which involved digging up the
entire front lawn. The guys did a great job, a _terrific_ job actually. I
Newsflash: The new Archbishop of Canterbury is a dimwitted lefty dork, and
if you can stay awake while reading to the end of this, you’re another.
I just got back from my 2nd-grade son’s “songfest.” What a mess we are in!
Tots in Santa Claus hats singing Hanukkah songs… Isn’t Hanukkah past and
gone already? A couple of years from now, no doubt they’...
Powell Asks Columbians to Go Slow On Prosecution of Ira Three
Conor Cruise O’Brien, writing in the Sunday Independent (a Dublin newspaper) on the Washington-London-Bogota-Dublin circuit of the War on terror (There’s a free sign-on thingy to go through.) The Cruiser argues that Colin Powell’s recent ...
Let's Hear It For Lithuania!
One of the really, really cheering and cheer-able things that has happened
this past 20 yrs has been the independence of the three Baltic states,
Lithuania, Latvia & Estonia. All three were independent between the wars,
then got comprehensively raped by Nazis ...
I’m sorry, Andrew, I don’t see the connect between the old, cheesy Star
Trek I used to love and the over-teched movie versions. I miss those
styrofoam rocks and Halloween-costume aliens. Although for sheer
I’ve had a number of e-mails along the following lines, and I assume every
other NRO staffer has, too. The following quote isn’t one of those e-mails,
it’s a compound I’ve put together by distilling the ...
I am swollen with pride. Last night I attended The New Criterion’s
Christmas party. If you don’t know TNC, it
is a monthly journal of conservative commentary on art, music, literature
and showbiz. (Mark ...
You can mark both pluses and minuses against the South as a culture; but I
always thought one of the big pluses is, that the South has brought forward
the code of gentlemanly honor into the modern age. Now, if ...
I see that John Podhoretz, in his New York Post column this morning, mentions
Noah Millman as one of his favorite
bloggers. Me too; in fact I alerted readers to Noah’s blog in my July Diary. At ...
Re: Every Dog Has His Day
Reader Logan Rogers has sent me this link. You’ll need a hanky.
Rod: I wouldn’t actually include “Hee hee hee” in the same posting as the
words “gay marriage.” It’s just… something… I don’t know. Things can
so easily be misinterpreted. Remember Dennis Thatcher’s remark about Norman St. ...
On those Scuds: several readers have suggested that before releasing them
to the Yemenis we may have tagged them electronically, so we can follow
their subsequent movements. I’d like to think we are that smart. I’d
really, really ...
To judge from reader response following my “Opera heresies” posting to the
corner yesterday, enough people agree with me that we can now form the cadre
of a new organization: Papageno Haters of America. Those interesting in
joining us–high ...
“Robertson corporation is no better than prostitutes, gamblers.” I think I
can parse that piece for you at least, Jonah. Robertson’s jam is a tasty
spread popular in the UK. Their marketing symbol used to be a cheerful
In response to numerous requests from readers following yesterday’s column,
I have put up a picture of Boris Derbyshire on my personal website.
Since we’re on the subject, here is another confession of opera heresy: I
can’t stand Papageno. I cringe every time he comes on stage. It drives me to homicidal fury when someone in a nearby seat, ...
Re Wesley Smith’s piece today on Dr. Philip Nitschke, Australia’s answer to Dr. Kevorkian: It seems to me that from a libertarian point of view, Dr. Nitschke’s position is unassailable. If I want to kill myself, why ...
Many, many readers wnat to know when I shall be on TV. Er, no idea. It may
have come and gone, as the taping was last Wednesday. All I know is that
the production company was called Test of Faith ...
No more googlewhacks PLEASE. And, yes, there is a Schroedinger’s cat in
there somewhere (physics buffs will understand).
Take the cure. Restore yourself to sanity by reading a piece of really
first-rate writing: Rick Brookhiser on the new Mencken ...
Googlewhacking (Someone Stop Me Please)
…”farrakhan lysimachus” (i.e. racist demagogues with minor Shakespearean
Obscure philosophers with freshwater fish is a good line of attack: “helvetius chub” returned precisely one link on Google.
Apropos James Robbins’s piece about the First World War on today’s NRO, one
of the most succinct pieces of really good historical writing I have ever
seen is Michael Howard’s recent book The First World War
You could also get a copy of the current (November) issue of The New
Criterion, which has a symposium on the
Thank You, Thank You, But...
Enough with the jokes, already. Unless anyone has an Arab joke in which
Jonah: My own problem with e-mail death threats stopped around the time I
posted my Suffolk County pistol license photograph on the web. Just a thought.
Couple of weeks ago I remarked in a column that the two most widespread
forms of hate* in these United States are (1) hatred of white people by
nonwhites, and (2) hatred of religious people by the irreligious. The
Andrew: When my mother was in her last illness, I asked her what she would like to have sung at her funeral. “Well,” she said, “Either ‘Crimond’ or
’Abide With Me,’ I don’t really mind.” I pointed out that ...
A few days ago my son had a birthday. It happens that this birthday falls on the same day of the year as that of my mother’s sister, Aunt Muriel. This Aunt was very good to me when I ...
What’s So Great About America by Dinesh D’Souza (Regnery; 218 pp., $27.95) have a problem with anti-Americanism. Not just an emotional problem, though I have that too, but an intellectual problem. I mean, I don’t get it. America — what’...
Several readers have e-mailed to grumble about me not being included in the
“Best of NRO 2002″ thingy. What does this mean? they want to know. Answer:
It means that I was away from my desk for a few hours while ...
Andrew, don’t be too hard on Rowan Williams, the new Archbishop of
Canterbury. He is a Welshman, remember. They can’t help the way they are,
Still smarting from my having trumped you on contributions to the great
imperial enterprise, eh, Andrew? Touchy about never having got your knees
brown? Or envious that I had the foresight to advance-order a good supply
of Sultan’s Turkish ...
A number of readers have emailed in to ask why December 26th is called
“Boxing Day” in England. Easy one: when you wake up the morning after
Christmas Day, the hangover makes you wish you were in your box. Recalling
Arrest of Wang Bing-Zhang
Wang Bing-zhang, one of the earliest of all Chinese dissidents, a graduate of
the 1979 “Peking Spring,” who first got his name in the papers here
protesting Chinese inclusion in the 1984 L.A. Olympics, has been arrested in
China under very ...
Christmas Day, 8:40 pm. Just finished dinner. Rosie surpassed herself this
year: a huge pork joint with masses of crackling. (Rosie: “It’s hard to
find pork with the skin on nowadays. They take it off to make pork rinds.”
Never mind Russia; our first call this morning was from Rosie’s
sister-in-law in China. “Sheng-dan kuai-le!” (Merry Christmas!) How on
earth is Santa going to manage, covering all this new territory?
Africa’s a big place. How much do you know about it? Find out with BBC
Africa’s quiz. Sample
question: “How many wives does Swaziland’s King Mswati III have?” Possible
answers given are: 10, 33, or 113. Be interesting to know ...
The Soviets didn’t start it. The brains of the great mathematicians Carl
Friedrich Gauss (1777-1855) and Lejeune Dirichlet (1805-1859), suitably
pickled, are kept at the Physiology Department of the University of
Goettingen, where both taught and died. Bernhard Riemann, ...
I have been getting Christmas cards from readers. This is wonderful
(especially considering that I am weeks behind on e-mail). Thank you all.
Bless you all.
Anti-Americanism Wins in South Korea
Roh Moo-hyun has won the South Korean presidential election. This is in
part a victory for anti-Americanism, as this editorial from the London Daily
Telegraph points out. Certainly it makes a forceful U.S. policy towards North Korea more difficult, ...
Be Careful What You Wish For
Al D’Amato, on O’Reilly’s show Monday night, says that if demoted to the
back benches, Lott will quit the Senate–from pride, not from spite. It
will be up to the (Democratic) governor of Mississippi to nominate ...
North Korea Threatens Nuke War If Conservatives Win in South
North Korea is threatening nuclear war against the South if GNP candidate
Lee (hawkish) wins Thursday’s election against the MDP’s Roh (dovish).
Andrew: Yes!–I, too remember the very first episode of Doctor Who, in
which that way cute young actress–sort of Jewish-pixie type–got in
trouble at school for solving a geometry problem using the fifth ...
Gross and Mean (But Nothing to Do With Trent Lott)
From reader Vic Havens (among an innumerable host of others): “Anon your
comments about the ‘TNC crowd’, perhaps you meant that their mass
destruction would cause the average or mean IQ of NYC to drop, which would
reflect their collective ...
Rod: Can it be that there are actually _two different_ codes for male
Southrons? I’m thinking of Huckleberry Finn. In one part of the book he tells of a fight between two men on a steamboat. The ...
Trent Lott & Southern Honor
From a reader: “I grew up in the South and know the culture well. Trent
Lott graduated from college in 1963 and went to grad school and stayed out
of the military. The Southerners who care about honor also enlist in ...
CAN of Marmite? Oh, boy, I have truly left civilization behind.
All right, I admit it, I clicked on “Corner Mother Superior” to see who the
Corner Mother Superior is. I knew it wasn’t Sarah, she’s Episcopalian. I
kinda thought it might perhaps be… Oh, forgive me, Rod. Though, ...
On the business of spelling and pronouncing foreign names, Jonah, I refer
you to my definitive piece on this topic, published in that well-known
conservative magazine A.N.Other a couple of years ago. Sample quote: “Toponymical practice ...
From his position on the couch (look, the mutt is eleven years old: he can
lie on the couch if he wants to), Boris graciously acknowledges the many,
many tributes to his appearance from kind readers. Grooming by Peticular
Anagram of: I’D GRAB A MERRY SAGE. (Just trying to be seasonal here.)
Jonah: I think you may, all unknowing, have just revealed the true reason
we have 13 million illegal immigrants in the USA….
(This is not just an American phenomenon, by the way. Some years ago in
London’s Victoria Station, waiting ...
No, I don’t still have my golliwog lapel pin. I lost it years ago. I believe Trent Lott still has his, though.
I’ve been married for 16 years, and let me tell you, there’s not much gay
about it. It’s mostly pretty depressing. Am I missing something here?
Release of North Korean Ship
This is a horrible blunder by the administration. In the midst of a region
where force talks, legalisms walk, they have gone with the legalisms. The
calculations are easy to discern: Yemen has helped us identify Qaeda
operatives, pulled out ...
John Podhoretz is right, it’s a feeble opera. It was the first opera I ever
saw–taken by friends who wanted me to “get” opera. I didn’t “get” it, in
fact Boheme nearly put me off ...
Derb On Canadian Tv: The Answer
A diligent reader has tracked down the production company that taped my
racial profiling ramblings. The show is “tentatively scheduled” to appear
on Tuesday, February 4th, 2003, at 8:00pm, on VisionTV, a cable station. The hostess, whose name I most unchivalrously ...
China: Sliding Into Fascism
A chilling report by the BBC’s man in China.
Sorry to be late with this, Rod, been out of town. No, Madonna doesn’t have
to curtsey, nor does anyone else. I mean, they don’t cut off your head if
you fail to curtsey. It’s just courtesy (...
Googlewhacking--The Evil Spreads
From Noah Millman:
African capitals and comic book characters: Ouagadougou Aquaman
Asterix characters and diseases: Obelix trichinosis Science-fiction writers and French wines: Pournelle muscadet Wagnerian characters and obscure colors: Alberich ecru
Also obscure sexual perversions with monastic orders: “troilism capuchin”
got just one Google link. (That one’s for Rod.)
From the emailbox: yet further proof (if proof were needed) that when workers have computers on their desks, there is NO LIMIT AT ALL to the lengths they will go to avoid working.
Derb: I thought you might like to ...
In my end-of-month diary last week, I posed a brain-teaser about a hockey tournament. Many readers e-mailed in with solutions. Thanks to all of them, and shame on me for not having had the fortitude to plow through the small ...
How can you guys be obsessing about some fool election when LONNIE DONEGAN’S DEAD?
Overwhelming response to my trashing of The Peace in this morning’s column.
NRO readers are pretty solidly with me on this. We could start a peace-free
sect of the Anglican communion… except that it seems there already is one.
From Jay Nordlinger’s Impromptus today: “Eileen Simpson, wife of John
Berryman, died. Her obituarist quoted Delmore Schwartz as saying, ‘All poets
’ wives have rotten lives.’ Did he mean it to rhyme? Was it accidental?”
Jay: No, not accidental, these ...
One of the disorienting things for an Old World conservative settling in America is that over here, even conservatives are optimistic. This really won’t do. A conservative ought to be a pessimist, at least about human nature, human society, ...
Why Don't I Care About the Palestinians?
Why don’t I care about the Palestinians? It is, of course, wrong of me not to care. It can’t be much fun being a Palestinian. You, or your parents, or your grandparents, ran for their lives in the 1948 ...