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Family

People Of Colour

I love tie-and-dye, and used to carry books around in tie-and-dye bags that my mum made for me. It was some time before I became aware (to my discomfort) that people in the west associated it with hippies. Here’s a BBC slideshow about makers of tie-and-dye fabrics in Mali.

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Family Resemblance

One thing I forgot to say when I posted those old photos: if you look at my father in the second one you can see why my sister and I reacted the same way to seeing Willem Dafoe in Mississippi Burning1 : “That’s dad in the 60s!” Until then, he’d been a Graham Greene character, working […]

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Time Travel

There aren’t many photos of me and my sister as children so I was especially touched when my (British) cousin, Teresa, sent me a couple she had found when scanning her father’s collection. The first one I’ve posted here is of Teresa and me visiting our grandmother in Walton in Lancashire. Uncle Bernard has always […]

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Mini-Me

A lot of people spend their youth experimenting. As my mother often tells people who really don’t want to know, I spent my youth experimenting: with chemicals, electricity, and the flora and fauna of Birmingham’s green belt. Just like my peers who took part in drug parties, random sexual coupling, and street violence—I suppose I […]

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I Warned Them, But Did They Listen To Me?…

Perhaps you remember my posting about my little sister’s small claims case against Sky. I wasn’t surprised to receive an email from her on Friday informing me that, after months of time-wasting and attempts at legal intimidation by them—don’t get lawyerly with woman who teaches law—she has finally and comprehensively whupped their sorry asses. My […]

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Do It For Money

While I’m on subject of recommendations I thought my parents had made to me but they hadn’t, this year I watched The Conversation for the first time. I thought mum and dad had been telling me for years that I should check it out, but, when I was round theirs a few weeks back and […]

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Generation Gap

You probably didn’t know that the miniature-mace-shaped implement used by a priest in the Roman Catholic church to sprinkle holy water is called an “aspergill” or “aspergillum”. Despite our respective Catholic upbringings and useless fact collecting, neither did I or my dad. But my dad (Jesuit schooling, degree in classics) could quote me the relevant […]

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Gum Shoe

Mick Hartley links to a Times report of a “serious” novelist suing the proprietors of a neighbouring factory because the fumes it produced so affected her concentration that she was reduced to writing genre fiction. It’s not just a funny hook for a news story; it’s a delicious illustration of how class and status in […]

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The Last Single Man On Earth

One of the things that came up over Christmas was, as usual, my continuing unmarried status as the big four-oh looms. Three different members of the family interrogated me about my non-existent love life. Yesterday, I was offered an opportunity to do something about this as I was invited to a singles event: a Website […]

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Christmas Cuteness On Film

On Christmas Day, I posted a quick snap of my niece and nephew taken with my new freebie digital camera. I’ve just got some scans of developed film back from the lab so I can share a few steam-powered Christmas photos with you. Here’s Sam playing with one of his new remote-controlled dinosaurs: Sam and […]

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Luvvie Dynasty Trivia

I had always assumed that there was some connection between the Cusack families either side of the Atlantic, but there ain’t. The actor and screenwriter Richard Cusack is father of John, Joan, Ann, Susie and Bill. Actor Cyril Cusack is father of Paul, Sorcha, Niamh, Pádraig, and Catherine. Sinead Cusack is married to Jeremy Irons […]

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Lightly Worn

Beachy Head[click image to enlarge it] I was eating breakfast in an hotel in Cambridge the Saturday morning after I shot that college ball. A tall, intense-looking man with a beard sat down at a table nearby. He pulled a hardback book out of his briefcase and began underlining paragraphs heavily with a soft pencil. […]

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Say It Loud: I’m Chippy And Proud

“Chippy!” is the cry of a winner in the lottery of birth losing an argument. There’s a scene near the beginning of Casino Royale in which Vesper Lynd practises some amateur psychology on 007 as they sit opposite each other on the Eurostar. She says something like: You’re Oxford, but not from money, hence that […]

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For Grandma And Grandpa Geek

One of the places I went away to was my sister’s, where our parents had a dinner to celebrate their 40th wedding anniversary. I took this the next day after mum and dad had gone back home. In the front is Maisie, my niece; holding her is my sister Clare; the blur in the background […]

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Raising Hell

In 2004 a US teenager murdered a homeless man. The teenager blamed his actions on his having played violent video games. Penny Arcade is a blog comic about video games. Gabe, one of its authors wrote a response to the story that ironically(?) blamed the kid’s parents. Gabe then received an extraordinary letter from a […]

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A PooterGeek Appeal

I’ve been staying at my parents’ this weekend—thanks, folks—while I’ve been attending the National Wedding Show [of which more soon at the Wedding Photography Blog]. The show was on at the National Exhibition Centre, round the corner from their place. As a boy I never imagined that I’d grow up to spend working Saturdays, for […]

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The Peak District Massive

My sister has done her share of lecturing and teaching in some of England and Wales’s less illustrious educational institutions. Now (as I have bragged before on her behalf) she teaches law in the sixth form of one of the best state schools in the country. The school is so good she and her family […]

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Christmas Cuteness

My niece spent most of the holiday either (briefly) naked or (for the vast majority of the time) dressed in one of her hideous Disney-licensed “Princess™” costumes. For the family photographer this was deeply, deeply frustrating. Here’s the best I could do under the circumstances. I took these on black-and-white film of course. You’d scratch […]

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The Lynx Effect

Once again this year the members of my family, both biological and legal, were generous with their hospitality and presents. My thanks to them all. They are good to me despite having lived with me through that stage in my life when I wore far too much of some nasty aftershaves. Most of my family […]

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Not Gay Trousers

Heaven knows why he chose me, but I have been asked by its proprietor to direct some PooterGeek Google karma in the direction of this “queer shirts’n’gifts” site: LGBTees.com, a shop that proves there’s more to LGBT apparel than rainbows. Apropos of nothing, I invite you to marvel at one of my niece Maisie’s Christmas […]

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Clear Blue Water

First there was my shaking hands with Thatch. Then there were the disagreements about common ownership of the means of production. Now I’ve been linked by the Adam Smith Institute’s blog. My dad’s never going to talk to me again.

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Comprehensive Success

Congrats to my sister, Clare, and my brother-in-law, Steve, who are, according to the schools inspectorate, teaching at one of the best of the best of the best in the country. (PooterSis versus Sky update: it’s already looking bad for Murdoch’s empire. Once the dust has cleared, I expect to be appointed Head of Programming.)

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Unmissable

I have returned from the lands of my childhood: the Midlands. With me I’ve brought six crates of my old books, reclaimed from storage at my parents’ house, a new water pump in the engine of my car, and a stinking cold—thank you, Maisie and Sam, you cute little bundles of virions. Naturally I took […]

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