Monday, 20 March 2017

COUNTDOWN TO THE LONDON MARATHON 2017 - PART 4

In my last Countdown to April 23 2017 blog, I had managed 15 miles of  continuous running. I had reached the edge of inner Mousehole but had not yet got to the very heart of the port with its wonderful harbour views. And now - as of yesterday, Sunday 19 April, I have!

Mousehole - an idyllic Cornish harbour - in the distance the stretch of the run from Penzance to Marazion


But there was a glitch in the week before with no long run on Sunday 12 April. After a strenuous short hill run in very windy conditions, I developed a familiar sensation in my lower back that meant I had to switch to a routine of self-treatment - a combination of rest and walking and back rack exercises - for a few days, with a session as normal  from my physiotherapist, Ben Donaldson and an extra session with my chiropractor, Tanya. By Wednesday of last week I was fit enough to get another run on my local circuit under my belt - 3.5 miles  in a fast for me 34 seconds - followed  by a good gym session on Thursday. And then on Sunday I returned to the long run from Marazion out to Moushole and back.

Here's a copy of my post on the Sally Army marathon runners website that I posted after the run yesterday.


'I'm back running and training! My chiropractic treatment on Tuesday confirmed my recovery from the lower back glitch and I had a successful and quite fast local and hilly circuit run on Wednesday (3.5 miles in 34 minutes), followed by a good gym session on Thursday. Today I set out from the Marazion car park with the desire to run for 160 minutes without stopping. The first 45 minutes saw


Monday, 6 March 2017

COUNTDOWN TO THE LONDON MARATHON 2017 - PART 3

Another month gone - five more Sunday morning long runs under my belt since the last blog - see this link for Part 2 of the Countdown to the London Marathon 2017 series. I note I wrote and posted on Saturday February 4 2017 which was actually the day before I switched from my local circuit runs to the largely flat route from Marazion heading west to Penzance and then Newlyn and on to Mousehole and eventually beyond - and returning when I reached the set time for that week.

Here's the history of the progress so far:

Marazion car park to Newlyn town sign - 50 minutes and return in 53 minutes and then running around Marazion to get to the target time of 110 minutes (and 45 seconds) - Sunday 5 Feb.

Marazion car park to just past Newlyn - 60 minutes (aiming for a target time of 120 minutes of continuous running) and then returning to the car at 129 minutes (and 45 seconds) after taking a

St Michael's Mount from Marazion - always the object of desire on the return journey.


wrong turn on the coastal foot path - doh! - Sunday 12 Feb.

Marazion car park to almost the outer limit of Mousehole - 65 minutes - and then turning round and returning to Marazion and the car in 130 minutes and 40 seconds - Sunday 19 Feb.

Marazion car park to inside the outer reaches of  Mousehole - 70 minutes - and then back to Marazion and the car in 137 minutes and 32 seconds. Very fierce wind in my face running out from Marazion that lengthended the journey to Newlyn by three minutes - the wind was on my back on the return journey - Sunday 26 Feb.

Marazion car park to just before the centre of Mousehole in 75 minutes (still  a strong head wind in


Thursday, 2 March 2017

JEREMY CORBYN IS A VERY DANGEROUS MAN

'He will have to go.'

It could be a Tory talking - a member of the 1% who control so much of our society's wealth and power and who sees a socialist vision as anathema - a deadly threat to their social and political interests.    .

Or it could be a member of the Parliamentary Labour Party - a Labour M.P. - since a majority of the PLP remain convinced that Labour will never be returned to power advocating socialist policies under the leadership of Jeremy Corbyn whose declared manifesto for the next election, in 2020 or earlier, is based on ten pledges to secure socialism for the 21st century - see my three blogs using this link for the first blog and accessing the other two blogs from there.    

Those who directly represent the interests of the 1% are united in their determination to destroy Jeremy Corbyn as a political force. They mock him. They ridicule him. But in doing so, they betray


Jeremy Corbyn - leader of the Labour Party in the UK


their fears. The former Conservative Chancellor, Kenneth Clarke, warned in an interview with the Huffington Post that Mr Corbyn's brand of left-wing populism would be hard to campaign against. It was not certain he would lose an election. He is quoted: "If you have another recession or if the Conservative government becomes very unpopular, he could win"  - see p,140 in 'The Road to Corbyn' by Rob Donovan (2016) using this link.

Those who are members of the Parliamentary Labour Party - or who are like-minded members of local constituency Labour groups - and are still wedded to the ideology of New Labour and believe in Tony Blair's abandonment of socialism as the passport to election success - face an existential crisis. Their Party lost in the General Elections of 2010 and 2015 despite following the New Labour

Monday, 27 February 2017

JAGO STONE - THE AMERICAN CONNECTION - PART 4

At some point next year, in 2018, I will be making contact with mainstream publishers to see who may be interested in putting their money into my biography of Jago Stone. Self-publishing - as I did with 'The Road to Corbyn' - remains on the table as an option. Either way, the more people who express an interest at this stage the better the sales will be come publication. That's why both the Jago Stone website and the Jago Stone Facebook page contain a box to fill in to express an interest in purchasing on publication - and being kept updated on the progress  towards that point.

Do please look and find the box and if you're interested fill in the box.

Here's the link for the UK readers.

Here's the link in The Page for America.
        

As you will know from my last Jago blog, there has been much new detail emerging ever since the New Year began. Here is the input from Marie-Elena Baker - Laina Baker - who left a comment on the first of my earlier American Connection blogs:

'This is so much fun to read! A real trip down memory lane. We (my husband and I) were stationed  at RAF Croughton, near USAF Upper Heyford) from the late 1960s through to 1981. I have 2 lovely watercolours, signed to my husband and I  from Jago Stone (1976) - Anne Hathaway's House and Trinity Church - two Stratford-upon-Avon views ... I would be happy to send them to  you. Jago even wrote notes on how it should  be framed on one of 


Trinity Church. Stratford-upon-Avon - Jago Stone (1976) - Specially painted for Laina and Rick Baker 


the pictures ... We met him though a friend who was stationed at Upper Heyford hospital ... He even sold  us one of his newly published books'.

That would have been 'The Burglar's  Bedside  Companion'- Jago's autobiography, published in 1975. Laina communicated with me
further and gave me permission to use names and show the


Monday, 20 February 2017

JAGO STONE - TWO DAYS EXPLORED: A BBC RADIO 4 INTERVIEW IN 1971 AND ITS AIRING AGAIN IN 2017

As each week goes past and fresh discoveries emerge from the online search for the identity of Jago Stone as a character and as an artist, I feel more and more excited as his biographer. My gut academic instinct that this style of research would pay rich dividends has been fully vindicated. I remember with pleasure the excitement of my research discoveries during the years from 1995-2003 spent exploring the subject of Drink in Victorian Norwich for my Ph.D. Now with the subject as Jago Stone and his times there is fresh delight in being the historian and practising the skills of this profession.

Using the material that comes to light, together with the detail that can be taken as fact already, the historian makes an interpretation of the past. That is what I am doing. My subject matter is not just Jago Stone. His 20th century world in all its complexity and change is a critical part of my focus. To understand Jago, make sense of the social  worlds he inhabited. And always remember the prerequisite of the good historian is the capacity for empathy. 

And so to a day in 2017 - last Thursday, in fact, the 16th of February. The day of my appointment at the British Library in London. The British Library opens at 9.30 am. Here is a photo I took of the queue ahead of me shortly after I joined it at 9.15. By 9.32 when the doors opened, the queue had increased nearly ten-fold and snaked around the piazza outside.

Queuing for the opening of The British Library on 16.02.2017


By 10.10 am I had completed my full registration and was sitting in a listening booth ready for the first of the three twenty minute plays of the item I had travelled overnight from Cornwall to hear. My four and a half hours inside the booth gave me the opportunity to make a full transcript of


Saturday, 4 February 2017

COUNTDOWN TO THE LONDON MARATHON 2017 - PART 2

The London Marathon this year is on St George's Day, April 23, 2017. April 23 is an important day for national treasures other than St George and the London Marathon. It's also William Shakespeare's birthday - and death day. Factoids are so Radio 2. I love them.

I thought I'd treat my readers and any sponsors, actual or potential, to the good news of my continuing and extending long runs for the last two Sundays - and at the same time explore the theme of  'The Back Garden'. A visual exploration of the role of the back garden in my journey through life.



The back garden of our terraced home in St Ives - 2017




A contemporary shot. I used a cropped version of this picture for my Countdown to the London Marathon 2017 - Part 1 blog on January 17 last month but did not contextualise. Here I am in the back garden of our terraced home in St Ives in Cornwall, Dig down deep enough and you are highly


Saturday, 28 January 2017

BEING TRUMPED - WILL MAY RUE THE DAY OF THE SPECIAL RELATIONSHIP?

My political antennae are well-positioned for crap-detecting. The phrase 'Special Relationship' has been heard so often in recent days that the alarm bells are sounding unbearably in my ears. Prime-minister May and President Trump and their teams have wrung the rhetoric dry and exposed the cliché of a special relationship high and dry for further scrutiny. I can only hope that most people can see through them and the deceptions  - if not now then in that future time when the proverbial chickens will have come home to roost.




Trump and May - a natural or a special relationship?



Here are some facts to consider. Not post-truth facts. Real facts. Objective facts. My source is Wikipedia - check the references - these facts qualify as facts. Here is a tale of a relationship that has fluctuated according to the needs of both the stronger party - the USA - and the will and political  judgement of the prime minister of the weaker party - the UK.


  • The United States gradually became involved in the Vietnam War in the early 1960s, but this time received no support from the United Kingdom. Anti-Americanism due to the Vietnam