Here’s to Midnight – hip! hip!

happy

xxx

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Merry Christmas!

Don’t do that, Georgina

My last blog (probably) before the big day itself, and something a little different today…

The sound file below is a monologue written by me and performed by regular co-conspirator Peppy Scott for the Tunbridge Wells Writers’ annual Christmas Countdown. The character, Miss Eels (who bears, it has been observed, a remarkable resemblance to the late, great Joyce Grenfell) is also likely to reappear as part of a new performance project we’re developing called The Gluten-Free Trio, who may well be appearing at a venue near you in 2018 as part of their Posh Village Hall Tour…

To listen, just hit “play”. If you prefer to read, the text can be found HERE.

More more Christmassy stuff (Pt.2)

Gosh, two posts in one day! That probably means there’s another one coming tomorrow… 

Anyhoo, this is the post I was originally going to post today before I wrote the silly pastry song this morning, and it’s another from The Tunbridge Wells Writers seasonal countdown.

The Red Button
by Nigella Scoose and Chris P. Tatas

Everything starts somewhere, although many physicists disagree. Charles Law is a physicist, but not a disagreeable one; he believes that everything has a beginning, including the universe. Charles believes that the universe – the multiverse – is an infinite loop, but also believes that infinite loops have to start somewhere, which sounds oxymoronic to many, but not to Charles. It was the idea of the infinite loop that first attracted Charles to physics (well, that and his natural talent in higher maths – always plural, in Charles’ mental dictionary, despite anything the Americans might have to say on the matter) as a career; a choice that the rest of his family found baffling. Charles is the first in his family to show any aptitude for maths, or, indeed, for any other field of study, and it is a running joke, given the family surname, that Charles is “the first law of physics”. Charles loves that joke, though the rest of his family grew tired of it very quickly. But I digress…

Charles Law believes that even circles (or infinite loops) have beginnings, and he has made it his life’s quest to find the one that underpins everything. His theory imagines a blank canvas, or sheet of paper, on which a circle is drawn. When complete, the circle is unbroken, with no beginning or end, but Charles’ obsession is with the point of contact that starts it all, the initial fraction of a fraction of a second when pencil-tip makes contact with paper for the very first time. That is that catalyst that starts it all, that is the beginning of everything that comes after. But what is the spark that sparks that catalystic event? And who, or what, is holding or directing the pencil?

Charles has a theory, and after years of research and speculation and further research and speculation he has developed a machine to test that theory that makes the Large Hadron Collider look like a child’s toy. It’s a very small machine, about half the size of a common house brick, but the implications of its workings are immeasurable. It is painted white, and has a small, red, mushroom-shaped button at its centre. Charles calls it his LITE box, for it is the physical manifestation of his life’s work: Law’s Infinite Timeline Extrapolation.

Now, standing over his machine, Charles is finally ready to hit the red button. It is Christmas Eve, and this is Charles’ present to himself. He has spent several months checking and rechecking every step and symbol in the formula of his equation, and he is supremely confident of its accuracy. Which is just as well, because the implications should it be wrong are… well, let’s not dwell on that.

It is only now, with his finger poised over the button, that the irony of the acronym he has chosen for his theory occurs to him. He smiles, delighted, and as his finger makes contact with the red button beneath it he verbalises his delight with four small words: Let there be LITE… …

More more Christmassy stuff (part 1)

I’ll be posting again a bit later, but here’s a quick song for all those for whom today will be “baking day” to sing along to while wrestling with the pastry. Undoubtedly needs a polish because dashed off in ten minutes to a deadline imposed by co-contributor Peppy Scott who had to get on with her baking… (to the tune of ‘Rawhide”):

Rollin’ rollin’ rollin’
Keep that pin a-rollin’
Got to keep on rollin’
– Yuletide!
In Christmas snowy weather
The folks all come together
For crust light as a feather
– Mince pies!

Roll ’em up, seal ’em down
Splash some milk on the crown
Bake ’em up till they’re brown
– Yuletide
Roll ’em up, seal ’em down
Splash some milk on the crown
Bake ’em up till they’re brown
– Yuletide

Sausage rolls are callin’
Stick your German Stollen
Keep that pin a rollin’
– Yuletide!
A filo parcel’s tasty
But don’t you be too hasty
Just puff or short crust pastry, please,
– Yuletide

Roll ’em up, seal ’em down
Splash some milk on the crown
Bake ’em up till they’re brown
– Yuletide
Roll ’em up, seal ’em down
Splash some milk on the crown
Bake ’em up till they’re brown
– Yuletide

Only fat and flour
But so good to devour
With mincemeat or some sausage pressed inside
With mulled wine or a lager
They’re great straight from the Aga
For eatin’ with your family by your side
-Yuletide

Roll ’em up, seal ’em down
Splash some milk on the crown
Bake ’em up till they’re brown
– Yuletide
Roll ’em up, seal ’em down
Splash some milk on the crown
Bake ’em up till they’re brown

Yuletiiiiide

dolly mince pies

 

More Christmassy stuff… Kinda…

Another bit of writing I did for this year’s festive countdown from Tunbridge Wells Writers. Not prose, not poetry – not sure what it is really – but it does include this year’s prompt from Terry Pratchett’s Hogfather, so that’ll do…

Let There be Light 

  • ‘Let there be light,’ he said, and there was light.
  • First there was a singularity, so small it hardly existed at all. Then it exploded and created everything…
  • Once there was a void. Then there was a gap in the void. Everything lighter than the void floated up to make the heavens. Everything heavier than the void fell and made the earth…
  • Once there was a nose and a Great Green Arkleseizure…
  • Once there was chaos, a yawning nothingness. Nyx. From chaos emerged the gods of creation: Gaia, Eros, Tarterus, Erebus…
  • Once there was only Theta, a life force, an energy. Then Theta created MEST…
  • Once there was a turtle and on that turtle’s back was a great, flat disc…
  • Once there was a great Cosmic Ocean…
  • Once there was a great Cosmic Egg…
  • Once there was a virgin who found herself with child…
  • Once there was a programmer who wrote a new code…

Let’s face it, we haven’t got a clue, really, have we? We’re arguing over things we know nothing about.

Continue reading “More Christmassy stuff… Kinda…”