according to The Times
has recently been voted the most beautiful word in the German language. According to this article in Wikipedia, it can be described as the struggle to come to terms with the past.
I read about this word in The Times, where Ben Macintyre is describing how the Germans will be publishing a new copy of Mein Kampf soon. It will be copiously annotated with footnotes to show where Adolf Hitler was just plain wrong.
Macintyre says that Germany has shown a way of defusing long standing problems, by letting historians tell the truth and suggests the approach could solve some of the major problems in the world, like the true nature of Stalin, the Falklands, Nagorno-Karabakh and the Senkaku Islands.
After all, when I learned Shakespeare at school, there were masses of footnotes and other annotations, which helped you understand the text and the age he lived in.
My father hated P.G. Wodehouse with a vengeance because of his broadcasts for the Nazis in the Second World War. We didn’t have any of his books in the house.
More has just been released from MI5 files as reported here in the Guardian.
I would follow my father and have nothing to do with any of Wodehouse’s books and can’t even say now, I’d go out of my way to watch a film, play or TV series of any of his books.
Remember my father was very involved with anti-Fascism protests before the war and active on the left wing of the Conservative party. He was also present at the Battle of Cable Street, when the East End stopped Mosley from marching.
My father could also do a mean impersonation of Lord Haw-Haw. But then I’ve never met anybody who didn’t feel that he wasn’t one of the funniest things of the war.
I’m half watching a play about Hitler. But I’m finding it a bit difficult to follow, probably because of the hay fever’s effect on my hearing.
It is set in or about 1930 and I am reminded of another tale. It is in Lord Howard de Walden’s obituary in The Guardian.
He inherited 120 acres of London’s west end and bred and owned the 1985 Derby winner, Slip Anchor. But the story he loved to dine out on was when, as a young Cambridge student fresh out of Eton, he was driving a new car in Munich when a man walked out in front of him and was knocked down. “He was only shaken up,” recalled de Walden. “But had I killed him, it would have changed the history of the world.” The man was Adolf Hitler.
I never actually met him, but I knew a few people who worked for him, who never said any word about him that wasn’t complimentary. My last vision of him was shortly before he died, sitting in state in a wheel-chair at Newmarket races, immaculately turned out ciomplete with apricot coloured socks; his racing colours as suggested by Augustus John.
Last night, I went to Wilton’s Music Hall in the East End of London. It is just round the corner from Cable Street, where in 1936, Mosley’s black shirts wanted to march and this resulted in the Battle of Cable Street. My father was there, although many would think that someone who always voted Tory wouldn’t have been. But he did have a lot of Jewish heritage and he had a very low opinion of fascists. Various groups always claimed they stopped Oswald Mosley and his odious followers, but my father always said that anybody who thought about it, was against Mosley.
The show was organised by The Times, and was essentially a comedy night with four comedy acts and a compere; Jarred Christmas. The acts were Colin Hoult, Imran Yusuf, Frisky and Mannish and one other, who I think might have been a late addition.
But it was three hours of good fun and all for a tenner.
The building is virtually a construction site, as they are struggling to get London’s last music hall on a secure footing, both financially and structurally. But the building had the right atmosphere and acoustics to make it a good venue.
The four comedians were good, but not as in your face as s0me. Colin Hoult relied a lot on word play, developing a new superhero called Grammar Man, who policed such evil powers as split infinitives, whilst Imran Yusuf showed how you don’t have to be Jewish to mock your religion constructively. Jarred Christmas was an amiable host, who did a good job to link it all together.
The show was round up, by Frisky and Mannish, who are best described as a comedy musical double act, with Frisky doing most of the singing to Mannish’s keyboard. There are some videos on their web site, which give a good flavour.
She introduced herself by saying that as it was a music hall, she was wearing a corset. And she was wearing it well over a split skirt and a halter top. Her shoes, hair and the corset laces were almost a matching red/orange colour. The corset wasn’t to a Victorian tightness, but it wasn’t loose either. She sang well too!
They are going to the Edinburgh Fringe and will certainly be worth catching.
The Times are putting on further comedy nights at Wilton’s. If they’re only a tenner a time, it won’t be the last time I go.
It is being reported that the European Court has ruled against Max Mosley.
My late father would be pleased to have seen this judgment.
He always claimed, that he got Max’s odious father with a tomato in the 1930s. It may even have been at the Battle of Cable Street. My father was there as a Londoner of Jewish ancestry, so he hated Oswald Mosley with a passion. Interestingly, my father was very much on the left of the Tory party, and he was not the only person with that political persuasion, who was there to stop Oswald Mosley and his blackshirts marching.
Remember that Hitler was also anti-homosexual and not just anti-Jewish, so in some ways his comments are even more ignorant than they appear in the first place.
But knowing the fashion industry, he’ll be back, as money talks louder than morals.
I for one, hope he doeasn’t make a comeback. Or at least until he’s seen the multiple errors of his ways.
The International Brigade who fought against the fascists in the Spanish Civil War contained about 32,000 from 53 nations.
As I walked along the river to Craven Cottage, I came across this memorial to those from Hammersmith and Fulham who died in the brigade.
Considering that a few thousand people from the United Kingdom were in the brigade, it is surprising I’d not seen a memorial before.
So there are to be elections in Burma, but they are pointless without the participation of the bravest woman in the world; Aung San Suu Kyi.
That was the said in Private Eye as they detailed how the senior figures in the odious British National Party might be bankrupted by Unilever for breaching Unilever’s copyright on a Marmite advert.
They finish the article by saying that they could be the first neo-Nazi party destroyed by the makers of a yeast extract sandwich spread.
C used to love her Marmite, but I don’t!
Yesterday, what happened in Bolton was not the way to protest.
You could argue that on the one hand it was a protest very similar to the Battle of Cable Street, where East London was determined to stop a march by the British Union of Fascists. My father, a left-wing Tory, was at that battle in 1936 and his view was that it was all of the East End against a rather nasty group with connections to Hitler. It could not be argued then, that we didn’t know of the ambitions and awful nastiness of the German dictator.
You could also argue that on the other, there are strong fears about such things like Sharia law and militant Islam.
I was listening to Radio 5 last night and the two sides had an argument with the presenter, as they thought they’d been duped into talking to each other by the BBC.
That probably shows more about the groups than anything else. They wanted a fight and that is what they got. But it was mainly with the police, who as ever were stuck in the middle. They should have let both of these groups get on with what they wanted to do. Preferably, in a place where they couldn’t do any damage to anybody else.
Those on both sides of the argument should talk to make sure that nothing like this happens again.