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Corona quarantine diary
投稿者: Mervyn Henderson

Chris S  Identity Verified
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Sorry, I’m British Mar 20

We didn’t take back our country in order to celebrate Eurofather’s Day.

I will be celebrating on the correct day in June.

I suspect Mervyn’s a player, though, and will try to wangle both days.

I seem to remember being caught out when I moved back from Germany and had to send two Mother’s Day cards. It still smarts.

But have a great day, Eurodads.

Edit: Oops. Turns out I was a day late and a dollar short (best book title ev
... See more
We didn’t take back our country in order to celebrate Eurofather’s Day.

I will be celebrating on the correct day in June.

I suspect Mervyn’s a player, though, and will try to wangle both days.

I seem to remember being caught out when I moved back from Germany and had to send two Mother’s Day cards. It still smarts.

But have a great day, Eurodads.

Edit: Oops. Turns out I was a day late and a dollar short (best book title ever, so much so that I don’t dare spoil it by reading the actual book). Typical Eurononsense, though, celebrating Father’s Day on a working day. Oh, the sexist tripe I could come out with now... Gerard?

[Edited at 2021-03-20 07:41 GMT]
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Man's Day Mar 20

Well, Exy, I'm sure your father came off the phone with tears in his eyes after that highly-charged emotional speech. Between you and PLF, it's an education in tenderness on these forums.

Chris S
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@Chris Mar 20

That's the spirit, Chris. Stiff upper lip. Keep calm and keep Father's Day in June. Who do these foreign johnnies think they are, anyway? They go over there and they change all the calendars, innit? And did you know they actually wanted to ban cheddar cheese a few years ago? And HP brown sauce, too. Said all this "By Appointment" stuff on the bottles was illegal. Straight up, guv, no, really, I heard it from the Man in the Pub the other day. He wrote a letter to The Sun about it and all. They're... See more
That's the spirit, Chris. Stiff upper lip. Keep calm and keep Father's Day in June. Who do these foreign johnnies think they are, anyway? They go over there and they change all the calendars, innit? And did you know they actually wanted to ban cheddar cheese a few years ago? And HP brown sauce, too. Said all this "By Appointment" stuff on the bottles was illegal. Straight up, guv, no, really, I heard it from the Man in the Pub the other day. He wrote a letter to The Sun about it and all. They're all slaaaaags, every last one of them, he said. Thank the Lord, I say, thank the Lord that Von der Dragon woman can't squeeze Boris' smalls any more.Collapse


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Chris S  Identity Verified
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Pfft Mar 20

Mervyn Henderson wrote:
Between you and PLF, it's an education in tenderness on these forums.


Worrabout me and Tom?

Typical. Even on our special day, They get all the glory🙄


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Mervyn Henderson  Identity Verified
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Tenderness Mar 20

Oh, Chris and Tom, I'm dreadfully sorry. But there are tendernesses and there are tendernesses, as Jean-Paul Sartre never ever wrote. Yours and Tom's are a different kind of tenderness. A concealed tenderness, a coy tenderness, a reluctant tenderness, a repressed tenderness, a tenderness that dares not speak its name, a tenderness gruffly expressed, a tenderness roughly expressed, a tenderness seeking tenderness that ...

Well, there's more, but I have a life to get on with here. I'
... See more
Oh, Chris and Tom, I'm dreadfully sorry. But there are tendernesses and there are tendernesses, as Jean-Paul Sartre never ever wrote. Yours and Tom's are a different kind of tenderness. A concealed tenderness, a coy tenderness, a reluctant tenderness, a repressed tenderness, a tenderness that dares not speak its name, a tenderness gruffly expressed, a tenderness roughly expressed, a tenderness seeking tenderness that ...

Well, there's more, but I have a life to get on with here. I'm sure you both know what I mean nevertheless.
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Vote for me - I'll bore you to tears Mar 22

Fernando de la Rúa, who won Argentina's presidential elections back in the 90s, freely admitted he was boring. "Maybe," he said, "it's because I don't drive Ferraris", an oblique reference to his rival Carlos Menem, the man who popularised badger sideboards and apparently was fond of Ferraris. Fond of most of the unboring things in life, too, they say.

We now have the same phenomenon ahead of Madrid's regional autonomy elections in May. Ángel Gabilondo, the socialist candidate, is
... See more
Fernando de la Rúa, who won Argentina's presidential elections back in the 90s, freely admitted he was boring. "Maybe," he said, "it's because I don't drive Ferraris", an oblique reference to his rival Carlos Menem, the man who popularised badger sideboards and apparently was fond of Ferraris. Fond of most of the unboring things in life, too, they say.

We now have the same phenomenon ahead of Madrid's regional autonomy elections in May. Ángel Gabilondo, the socialist candidate, is soaring in the boredom stakes. The party has even brought out a campaign video to prove just how boring he is. "Boring, serious and well-behaved" is the lantern-jawed Ángel's motto. It seems the Madrid elections will depend on just how bored you want to be:

Or do you want to vote for the gorgeous, pouting, single and as yet unattached Isabel "Morticia" Díaz Ayuso of the conservative PP party, the current presidentess? Rarely boring, because she always has a lot to gripe about.

Or perhaps Professional Pinko Pablo Iglesias, who has now ditched his angry-young-man ponytail for a not-quite-so-angry-now-I-am-in-a-position-of-power tied-up bun, and also ditched his job as second Deputy PM (though not the lifetime pension, presumably ...) to vie for the Big Job in the capital. Rather repetitively boring with the redistribution-of-wealth talk from a man who now lives in a very, very large house, which takes the edge off some of the boringness.

Or another hugely photogenic pinko rival, Mónica García of Más Madrid, the party that moved away from Pablito when he started to enjoy power and all the trappings of it, instead of spending his time protecting the poor and wimmin? Ms García, however, although she is definitely a wimmin, has maybe been wheeled out precisely due to all that huge wimmin photogeneity or however you say it. The jury is still out on whether or not Mónica is boring, but people like that pretty, mature, homely look.

Or the sinister-featured extreme right-wing Vox candidate, Rocío Monasterio? Never ever boring because she's always shouting about wimmin, but not in the same way as Mónica is. No, she prefers wimmin to shut up, lie down, open their legs and shout "¡Viva España!" as they do so, increase the population and stay in the kitchen, or the bedroom (if they're lucky).

Edmundo Bal of the rapidly disintegrating Ciudadanos party seems rather boring (but a brave man for raising his hand in Madrid for a party that's going to shit), but his candidature is academic now.

Watch out on 4 May as the people of Madrid vote for boring or exciting.

[Edited at 2021-03-22 08:19 GMT]

[Edited at 2021-03-22 11:23 GMT]

[Edited at 2021-03-22 17:02 GMT]
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International Anti-Racism Day Mar 22

I didn't know there was one, but it was yesterday, 21 March. I only realised when I read rants various in the paper yesterday against intolerance, discrimination, racism and xenophobia here, and walking up Gran Vía yesterday I saw a poster of a female football player with her back to the camera, wearing the Athletic Bilbao kit, and the message, in Spanish above and Basque below, "Tolerance 0 for Racism", the "0" cunningly shown as her shirt number. Which got me thinking, and as usual I just had... See more
I didn't know there was one, but it was yesterday, 21 March. I only realised when I read rants various in the paper yesterday against intolerance, discrimination, racism and xenophobia here, and walking up Gran Vía yesterday I saw a poster of a female football player with her back to the camera, wearing the Athletic Bilbao kit, and the message, in Spanish above and Basque below, "Tolerance 0 for Racism", the "0" cunningly shown as her shirt number. Which got me thinking, and as usual I just had to put on my cynical hat:

This is particularly poignant here because one of the Athletic's stars, Iñaki Williams, born in Bilbao of Ghanaian parents, is as black as your boot, and over the last few years he has had to put up with many an insult shouted by opposing fans from the terraces during matches.

So far, outrage in this regard is totally comprehensible. But I'm going out on a limb here with this next bit, because it's not the kind of connection that anyone usually makes in the press here. I mentioned above that Iñaki was born in Bilbao. This is crucial. Iñaki was never discriminated against in Bilbao because he happens to be black, no, but if he'd been born in Ghana or England or anywhere else, he could never have played for the team, because Athletic Bilbao is the only team in Spain (in Europe? the world?) that refuses to accept players not born in the southern Basque Country, i.e. down here, in the northern Basque provinces across the border, or Navarra.

Now, I'd call all this discrimination at the very least, wouldn't you?

In the sports section of El Corte Inglés, which I walk past at least once a week for the grocery run, alongside all the footballs and goalie gloves and football shirts, I see huge posters of Iñaki and other Athletic players, scowling defiantly at the camera like they were about to kick your lights out (but that's not just Athletic Bilbao - all footballers seem to pose like thugs, albeit with carefully careless stubble on their faces), with captions in English (yes!!) which I can't remember exactly now, but they proudly proclaim something like "Born of this land" and "From this ground". So there. Captions they can't very well trundle out for Leo Messi in Barcelona Football Club. The Catalans aren't racist either, because we all know Messi's Argentinian. Fewer and fewer Catalans in the club, in fact, as the years go by. Everybody's welcome.

It's a funny old non-racist world.

[Edited at 2021-03-22 12:26 GMT]

[Edited at 2021-03-22 12:26 GMT]

[Edited at 2021-03-22 14:46 GMT]
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More Happy Hour Mar 23

Since the subsidised watering-hole voucher plan went so well that they were all snapped up within the first day or two, the Basque Government has come up with another cunning plan for Easter and the summer too. More vouchers, called "On Egin!" this time. "On egin!" is the equivalent of Bon appétit, Enjoy your meal, or simply Enjoy! as they say across the Pond. I don't know why they say that, because all it means in Basque is "do well". Do your food well? Do your eating well? Do it well? In fact... See more
Since the subsidised watering-hole voucher plan went so well that they were all snapped up within the first day or two, the Basque Government has come up with another cunning plan for Easter and the summer too. More vouchers, called "On Egin!" this time. "On egin!" is the equivalent of Bon appétit, Enjoy your meal, or simply Enjoy! as they say across the Pond. I don't know why they say that, because all it means in Basque is "do well". Do your food well? Do your eating well? Do it well? In fact, it isn't even "well", it's "good", because that's the "on" part. But let's get on here (geddit? - I know it's rather weak) ...

They can't leave the region over Easter, reason the strategists, but they can travel around it, can't they, so all those rural gîtes and spas and hotels are in on the scheme. If you spend 100 yucks, the Basque Government gives you another 50 yucks towards your stay at any of these places, and you can also use them to buy local produce - txakoli wine, Rioja, cider, ecological beer, chorizo, Gernika peppers, Tolosa beans, farmhouse-fed-and-reared chickens, thick beef txuletas, cod, sea bream, all that traditional stuff.

Now, I reckoned that sounded like an incentive to eat, drink and be merry because tomorrow, well, you never know, do you. Yes, it definitely meant a lot more eating and drinking to me, like those bar vouchers, only in places you wouldn't normally be eating and drinking, but I've been put right by Basque Government Secretary for Economic Development, Sustainability and Environmental Affairs - a post which is a bit of a mouthful in itself (quite lame again, but geddit?). No, this will "streamline the consumer experience", "showcase Basque produce" and "boost the something or other ..." - what she said was another mouthful (definitely limping painfully this time ...), but she could be right with all this streamlined eating and drinking, I suppose.

Except they'd better hurry up with them vaccines meanwhile. This weekend the police walked in on 500 little maskless and social distancingless parties in Madrid alone.





[Edited at 2021-03-23 16:47 GMT]

[Edited at 2021-03-23 16:49 GMT]

[Edited at 2021-03-23 16:53 GMT]
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Alexandra Scott  Identity Verified
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What about the oranges? Mar 23

Don't tell me you can't use the vouchers to buy Torres oranges!!

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Oranges Mar 23

Good question, Alexandra, but I suspect that Torres Oranges will be treated as an alien product from eastern/southeastern Spain. I don't know what Ramón will have to say about all this.

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I Don't Like Mondays (but I really hate Tuesdays) Mar 24

It may turn out that was the prat's reason for walking into a supermarket in Colorado and opening up on everyone. Or maybe he'd been laid off. Or his girlfriend had dumped him. Or he just had nothing better to do.

Maybe he should have stayed in bed instead of bringing a lot of misery to Boulder:

In 1987 Michael Ryan went on a murderous spree in the English town of Hungerford, and killed over a dozen people. A 14-year old girl said he smiled, and then crouched down, too
... See more
It may turn out that was the prat's reason for walking into a supermarket in Colorado and opening up on everyone. Or maybe he'd been laid off. Or his girlfriend had dumped him. Or he just had nothing better to do.

Maybe he should have stayed in bed instead of bringing a lot of misery to Boulder:

In 1987 Michael Ryan went on a murderous spree in the English town of Hungerford, and killed over a dozen people. A 14-year old girl said he smiled, and then crouched down, took aim, and fired at her. He killed someone mowing the lawn, and random people passing by in cars. He killed his mother too, when she drove up and saw the bodies on the street, and also found that the house where the two of them lived was on fire, because he found time to torch it in the middle of all this. In the end he holed up somewhere, and the police negotiated with him before he shot himself. He said to them at one point that the town "must be a bit of a mess." He added "I wish I had stayed in bed." Quite.

[Edited at 2021-03-24 11:38 GMT]

[Edited at 2021-03-24 15:22 GMT]
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Crystal ball Mar 24

I discovered this afternoon that I have certain powers. I have been looking into the future ... yes, I can see a man ... a man with the initials ... G ... G something, yes, G .... B, GB, yes, in Germany, too, will be along shortly on this very thread to tell us why people should not bother with vaccines. You mark my words. It shall come to pass ...

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Captain Hindsight: not so much crystal ball Mar 24

Mervyn Henderson wrote:

I discovered this afternoon that I have certain powers. I have been looking into the future ... yes, I can see a man ... a man with the initials ... G ... G something, yes, G .... B, GB, yes, in Germany, too, will be along shortly on this very thread to tell us why people should not bother with vaccines. You mark my words. It shall come to pass ...


Mervyn, GB's anti-vaccine contribution is on page 79; it was written last Friday.


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I'm not so sure Mar 24

... sometimes the post appears late, but is stuck back among the posts on the same day it was written. So maybe Gerard did write it a few days ago, but it was only posted non-chronologically today? I don't remember seeing it on page 79.

Be that as it may, I'll be back tomorrow with Friday's Euromillions numbers.


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And if ... Mar 24

Mervyn Henderson wrote:

I discovered this afternoon that I have certain powers. I have been looking into the future ... yes, I can see a man ... a man with the initials will be along shortly on this very thread

... you had written "crystal bowl" instead of "crystal ball" in your headline, then the curtains would have opened for a second man this stage is missing for a long time now, but I believe he's got other plans ... so, have a nice evening then all together!


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