A Brit a Day [#1235]

I’m tooting my own decidedly non-British horn in ABAD today because I am so excited that my Etsy digital download shop is finally open!

I’d love to sell a bunch of downloads of the big 10MB jpegs I have for sale there, but mainly, I’m just happy for everyone to be able to look at samples of the pictures.  Go here to check it out–


I only have about 2 dozen images up now, and I have a looooong way to go.  I think I’ve mentioned this before–the images are from the slides I inherited from my dad, and a few of my own from Europe in the 80s. Eventually, I’ll be concentrating on the ones my dad took for his personal use during his travels with the USDA.  Some of them [mainly ones I haven’t posted yet] have historical significance, IMO. I’ll try to add 3-4 items a week to the shop.

A Brit a Day [#1086]

Here’s Davy Jones in 1965.  How I loved that guy.  He passed away last year at the age of only 66, way too young.

My dad died when I was 29 [a looong time ago, about a month after the Berlin Wall fell], and at 68 years of age, I remember thinking that he had had a good, long life.  Now, it seems like he was taken in the prime of his life.  And the same is true of Davy Jones.

A Brit a Day [#1080]

So, may I elaborate on what bright idea had me googling AR yesterday when my senses were assaulted by the sight of his otherwise gorgeous face looking out from Ronald Reagan’s plaster-like head?  I think I had googled something like ‘alan rickman rock star’.  Yes, there’s irony in this story.

It was because these four rock stars made a road trip from Lands End to John O’Groats on Thursday in a custom pink Rolls Royce to raise awareness and donations for Breast Cancer Care, a charity in the UK.  They are, from left to right, Professor Brian Cox, who was briefly a rock star in the 1980s and apparently took his rock-star proceeds to go back to school and get a Ph.D. in particle physics; James May, who simply is the essence of ‘rock star’;  Gary Barlow, who actually is a rock star, well, pop star; and Chris Evans, a popular and wealthy radio DJ, television presenter, radio and television producer, yada yada yada. And we all know that DJs are just frustrated rock stars, so there you go. [Don’t listen to me, I’m just jealous that he has owned a 1961 Ferrari 250 GT SWB California Spyder that cost eleventeen million pounds and I have not.]

The pictures of the four of them together reminded me of a photo montage I saw years ago that included ‘Robin Hood’ era Rickman and some other shaggy actors photoshopped in as various members of The Who.  I’m not describing it very well, in fact I may not even be remembering it very well, but in any event, I couldn’t find it and if you know what I’m talking about please contact me.  I would so love to see that picture again!

A Brit a Day [#1079]

I’m featuring Alan Rickman a day early this weekend because this simply can’t wait.  Someone should have warned me about this, preferably while I was still lying down in bed.  People are all hot and bothered about left-leaning Jane Fonda playing Nancy Reagan, but life-long Labour supporter Alan is playing her husband Ronnie?  I really didn’t like Ronald Reagan.  I’m sure he was a nice guy, but he is our Margaret Thatcher.  I’ve disliked characters that Alan Rickman has played in the past, usually owing to his talent as an actor, but this character comes ready-made unbearable for me.  What’s this movie about, anyway?

On the other hand, I really hope this one will be good.

A Brit a Day [#883]

The simple and lovely embellishments to this screen shot from ‘The Reichenbach Fall’ remind me, once again, of my favorite foreign-language film, ‘Wings of Desire.’  We celebrate the 25th anniversary of that cinematic masterpiece this year.

Credit to the artist, not me.

A Brit a Day [#613]

Benedict Cumberbatch and Gary Oldman in ‘Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy.’
I can’t wait for this movie.  I’ve been living in a kind of Cold-War-European-1970’s aesthetic lately.  I traveled around the East/West German border in 1980, and this week I had my Kodachrome slides of that trip transferred to DVD.  [See a few on my other blog: http://anthropologic-ephemera.dreamwidth.org/]  So I’ve been reliving my brief days behind the Iron Curtain [that’s so fun to say..]
And as for the 1970’s–I finally saw ‘Last Tango in Paris’ for the first time on Netflix the other day.

A Brit a Day [#589]

I’ve been a fan of Harold Pinter’s plays since I designed sets for a couple of them at a Pinter festival in the 80’s. A forgotten Pinter piece has recently resurfaced, and it is brief enough that I could post it in its entirety here.  The timeliness of this short play from 1960, in light of the current uprising of the 99%, is uncanny.  As usual, I can’t resist casting it for your enhanced enjoyment.  Here is “Umbrellas” with Benedict Cumberbatch in the role of A and Matt Smith in the roll of B–

Two gentlemen in deckchairs on the terrace of a large hotel. Wearing shorts and sunglasses. Sunbathing. They do not move throughout the exchange

 A: The weather’s too much for me today.


 B: Well, you’re damn lucky you’ve got your umbrella.

 A: I’m never without it, old boy.


 B: I think I’d do well to follow your example.

 A: Yes, you would. Means the world to me. I never find myself at a loss. You understand what I mean?

 B: You’re a shrewd fellow, I’ll say that for you.


 A: My house is full of umbrellas.

 B: You can’t have too many.

 A: You’ve never said a truer word, old boy.


 B: I haven’t got one to bless myself with.


 A: Well, I can forsee [sic] a time you’ll regret it.

 B: I think the time’s come, old boy.

 A: You can’t be too careful, old boy.


 B: Well, you’ve got your feet firmly planted on the earth, there’s no doubt about that.


 A: I certainly feel secure, old boy.

 B: Yes, you know where you stand, all right. You can’t take that away from you.


 A: You’ll find they’re a true friend to you, umbrellas.


 B: Maybe I’ll buy one.


 A: Don’t come to me. It would be like tearing my heart out, to part with any of mine.


 B: You find them handy, eh?


 A: Yes … Oh, yes. When it’s raining, particularly.


 © The estate of Harold Pinter 2011

A Brit a Day [#572]

Back in the day of Hans Gruber, I would have loved to see Alan Rickman cast as Mikael Bloomquist.  Of course, ‘Girl with the Dragon Tattoo’ was just a candy bar in Stieg Larsson’s back pocket when ‘Die Hard’ came out.

A Brit a Day [#514]

Ian Rankin was born the same year as me, but he has been channeling a much older man since 1987. Rankin is the author of the Edinburgh-set crime novels featuring police detective John Rebus. I am reading 64-year-old Rebus’s “retirement” novel right now, ‘Exit Music.’ [Note to self: cast Alan Rickman as John Rebus in the movie playing in my head.] Kinda don’t want it to ever end.

A Brit a Day [#509]

James Blunt sporting a Ramones T-shirt. My husband has/had the same shirt [it’s shreds now] and I have/had it in heather gray with red writing. I don’t know when either of the boys got theirs, but I earned mine when I ran lights once for the Ramones back in my roadie days in the 80’s at North Carolina State.