Wednesday, April 02, 2008

Havin' a laugh...

Havin' a laugh, originally uploaded by CharlesFred.

There was a very nice April Fool’s joke in my daily free paper, Dagblad de Pers, yesterday. The front page showed some handsome, half naked young men in a mine. The article which followed explained how Dutch women were moving to southern Poland in search of a simple life with a handsome and simple Polish miner, creating a little community with coffee mornings and tea afternoons, while their husbands spend their time underground. It took Fred quite a while to get it.

A pity that the election results in Zimbabwe are turning into a not-at-very-funny joke, with that reptile Robert Mugabe trying to cling onto power despite only getting about 30% of the vote (and that is an optimistic guest). No doubt, the man who has almost single-handedly brought his country onto its knees, will not feel at al bad about staying on, even if this risks Kenya-type violence and near-civil war. Oh what a great day for Zimbabwe it will be when he finally goes.

In the meantime, the Geert Wilders story found a nice twist when the Minister of Justice told Parliament that Geert Wilders had told him that he was planning to tear some pages out of the Koran (which he wants to be banned) and then burn them. Such images, of course, are a lot stronger than what he put in his film and it DOES explain why the Dutch government was so scared about the film and was taking such diplomatic steps beforehand to minimize the amount of trouble the film would cause. Of course, Wilders wants to blame the government for blowing the situation out of proportion, so that it is the Prime Minister who is seen to be the bad boy and not himself. He is now calling the Justice Minister a liar but I know which person I would most likely believe… and it isn’t that straw-haired madman from the south…

Further, we can report that we went the school play at Fred’s school yesterday evening. The play was called Pika Don, which is the name given by the Japanese to the atom bombs which the Americans dropped on Hiroshima and Yokohama. The play was set against the background of the bomb and was written by one of Fred’s closest colleagues. A few of her plays had been preformed by local and then other theatre groups but this was the first one to be performed by school and it was the first time the play ahs been performed. The music teacher wrote the music to accompany the songs and the drama teacher abridged the play for performance at a school.

It was really really good. Real drama, an interesting historical perspective (the playwright is a history teacher, after all) and the songs, singing and music were excellent. Well done to all concerned. Let’s hope it isn’t the last play to be put on at the school, although I can imagine that a rest for a year or two might not be a bad idea.

It’s a running evening this evening and the weather looks to be a lot friendlier than on Friday and with the clocks having been put back, it will stay light most of the time. Not exactly spring-time, but the next couple of days are promising.

Friday sees us going back to England, this time to see my Dad, who was 76 on Monday and also to see the Grand National, this for the second time. It is a very odd field, with not all that many National-type horses and all of them in the handicap. I had had my eye on a hosre called Knight Legend, but resisted the temptation to place a bet, which is good, because he is not running – so I am already in profit! I was very keen on McKelvey this time last year and he ended up coming second, having injured himself on the run-in. He has run twice recently, but neither was particularly good. Also, his price is drifting suggesting that there is not so much confidence behind him. I will have a sympathy bet, but I am not hopeful. Forgive a horse one bad run and pick the jockey of the moment and you have Sam Thomas on Mr Pointment. He won very easily at Aintree earlier in the season, but ran very badly last time out. He has a high weight, but if he is back to where he was before, he should have a good chance. Otherwise, the third from last season, on whom I was also betting, Slim Pickings, has ruin reasonably well without winning. However, he is 10-1 instead of the 33-1 I got last year.

But don’t listen to me… I still haven’t won anything since last June…


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