Friday, May 28, 2010

silly boy

Further to my last post, of course Martin Gardner didn't write "Goedel, Escher and Bach", but is referenced in that book! He did, however, write the annotations on "Alice" and loads and loads of mathematical diversions.

Thanks to Lewis for pointing this out me.

On holiday! Off to see Arundel Castle today.

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Martin Gardner

I've just heard that one of my all-time heroes, Martin Gardner, has
died. He was 95, so it is hardly surprising, but sad nonetheless. He
wrote a book which was highly significant in the development of my
interest in mathematics and art, "Goedel, Escher and Bach" and also
published my favourite edition of "Alice in Wonderland" with
annotations about the mathematics and jokes embedded in the original
text and his writings and thoughts have been a constant in my adult
life. Despite his death, I'm sure that this will continue to be true.

Saturday, May 15, 2010


Antwerpen Centraal 2

Just back from a week in Antwerp with the students, which was, given the perilous state of air travel in general at the moment, somewhat nerve-wracking! The students were incredibly well-behaved and good-natured, as I had hoped, however, and the trip was great. We went to the diamond museum, a diamond-setter, the silversmithing museum and the SIHA Jewellery School. It was good to see all our old friends at SIHA and to have a night out with them. On Thursday we had a day in Amsterdam.

Canal Scene

I've spent the whole day dropping off to sleep!

Friday, May 07, 2010


To that previous post... when I wrote "single", I meant "unmarried"!
(Before I have to write "divorced", by which I mean "dumped".)

Thursday, May 06, 2010

richard the third

Finished the brooch project I was working on over the last few weeks:

Richard III - 11

Richard III, named for the very mediaeval style and the suggestion of death and woodland.

Went to vote today, which was just depressing. All those small men, those who had failed at everything else, standing about outside the polling station in their too-long dark coats, smoking cigarettes and smiling smugly in a vain attempt to get my vote and make something of their tiny lives by granting them the power to lord it over me. There is a lot to be said for the theory that anyone who wants to go into politics should be forbidden from so doing. Whatever happens tomorrow, the result will be a further slump into the banality which has engulfed Britain since the 1960s. Three equally bland nonentities beg for their chance to run the country: Politics is no more than a sickening version of "The X-Factor" in which real life, real arguments, real economics, real people doing real things are airbrushed out of existence and replaced with a mere popularity contest which is more about who you hate the least than about who has any real talent or ability. (Or worse: about who greases what palm the most.)

"Choices"? I was offered the following delightful array of losers: Labour, Liberal Democrats, Conservative, Scottish National Party, some "socialist" claptrap that couldn't afford a logo, British National Party, Scottish Socialist Party, Socialist Labour and Trade Union and Socialist. In short, not one candidate that I think is worthy of my support. A bunch of no-hope idiots seeking an enormous salary with all the expenses they can fiddle for doing absolutely nothing. It is little surprise that in the 2009 by-election, the turnout was the lowest ever recorded for a UK election.

Whatever happens, I will end up worse off. Being middle-income, middle-class, middle-aged, single, employed and male, I will be paying for tax cuts for the rich, benefit rises for the poor, duck-houses, moats and every other fucking thing that the corrupt and stinking edifice of British Politics sees fit to squander money on: Britain will sink further into the squalid mediocrity of financial, moral and cultural bankrupcy.