Daily Archives: January 5th, 2006

New music, oh yeh

Thanks to various fortuitous events, I/we had some vouchers to spend at music places. Score!

Goldfrapp – Supernature – because Kat had burnt it for me to see if I liked it, and I love it.
Oasis – (What’s the Story) Morning Glory – the bro had it on tape (!) and I loved it, and for $10, who can go wrong?
Fleetwood Mac – Very Best of – again, $10… love Stevie Nicks.
Jamiroqai – Dynamite (his latest) – just because I thought I should own some.
Foo Fighters – In Your Honour – because I went to their concert without owning their latest CD, and thought I should.
Led Zeppelin – How the West was Won – all live stuff. 25 minutes of Whole Lotta Love! The price sticker said $40 or something, but I figured for 3 CDs I could deal with it (and it wasn’t real money)… but it scanned at $20! As Darryl says, Gold!

The bro also gave me John Mayall, The Turning Point, for Christmas – I specified the artist, he chose the album randomly. I remembered him from the show Dancing in the Streets and I thought I should get into some old blues. This one is different because there it’s blues minus drum, so you can actually here the bass… and the sax, and the flute…

Grandparents… again…

I think our little black brid may be confused. I noticed it (I presume it to be the same one) back in its nest before Christmas; I thought maybe it needed somewhere cosy to roost for a while. No… there are more babies in there!! I really, really hope more than one survives this time. We saw Mama Brid feeding them yesterday; it was very exciting. I really wish, though, that I was about half a foot taller, and I would have a much better view inside the nest.

We also had more angel fry when we got home a few days ago – surprise, surprise. I thought that I would give J’s trick a go, and scoop some up in the net. Unlike J, I managed to actually get some in there, so I was pretty proud of myself. Of course, those I didn’t manage to catch proceeded into a diaspora, which didn’t last long…. And the problem is that those caught in the net didn’t last long either, because it turns out they can swim through the holes in it…

At the supermarket…

I think I may cry. On a little expedition to the shops, buy some lunchy type things…

… there were bags of Easter eggs for sale.


Defending History

I just finished In Defence of History, by Richard Evans. I read it with a pencil in hand, underlining things like I haven’t since I was an undergrad (ha, makes me sound so educated and old…). It was a fantastic book. I won’t attempt a dissertation of it here, except to say that it was largely a refutation of post-modernism in history. That is, Evans said that many of the good challenges post-modernism throws up for the historian are things that many have been aware of for years anyway – like the fact (contentious word!) that objectivity is an issue, and that reading the sources is fraught – and that other things post-modernism says about history, like that it is dying, are just daft. I loved the way he ripped into some of post-modernism’s ideas and arguments, revealing their inherent contradictions.

Essentially, this book defends the practice of history in its many and varied forms – social, political, micro – and warns all of us that we must be ever vigilant about how to use sources appropriately. Everyone who claims to be a historian these days must deal with the theory side, and I think that everyone should read this, if only to figure out where they stand on the issues he presents.

And I have the most recent edition, which includes a long Afterword with a vigorous rebuttal of lots of the criticism he received of the book. That was probably the most entertaining part of the whole book.

Tommy Lee goes to College

I am ashamed to admit that I just watched the last 10 minutes of the last episode of Tommy Lee Goes to College. It was actually quite interesting, just to see how he reacted to the whole pressure of exams – and to see how people around him acted, too. It would have been quite an interesting series to watch simply from learning about US collegiate practice, in some ways, I think. The Horticulture exam was great – 10 examples of plants, write down the family/genus/ etc! Love that hands-on thing. Anyway, in the end I think it was probably mostly the effort of an old rocker to recapture some of his former fame – and some knowledge along the way.