False Bay Flight Fun

A quick lunchtime trip to the False Bay Rugby Club with the newly-mended Mrs 6000 gave me a chance to chuck the Mavic around, much to the joy of the kids and dads playing on the rugby field.

This was all about having fun, not a photo or video expedition, so there’s not much to report other than the fact that it was nice to get some fresh air and some more but you can have a look at a different view of things here if you want.

School holidays are now upon us, so not only does that mean an extra hour in bed each morning, but I will also be using every opportunity to spend some time with the kids and – because I have a little bit of annual leave coming up – flying some new places too.

Headline

There’s a lot of bad news around at the moment: Terrorist attacks, conflict, political upheaval, state capture etc. It’s all rather unpretty and wholly depressing.

Oh, and death. There’s always death.
Look, we’re all going to shuffle off this mortal coil at some point, so if you’re going to go in the midst of such dark times, why not go in a way that at least generates an interesting headline:

Indeed. Tragic tale.

Thus, if you come across a Sky News story headed:

Underrated Cape Town blogger dies after mysterious late night beagle incident

in the near (or distant) future, then you’ll know where not to come anymore.

Dirty Dogs

As a microbiologist, I’m very much against the beagle being anywhere near my family licking my face.
I don’t allow it. You simply don’t know where that tongue has just been.

And so that’s just another of the many, many reasons that the above situation could (thankfully) never occur Chez 6000

And before you ask further household/canine hygiene based questions:

1. Lots and lots of hand-washing.
2. No. Not in the bedrooms.
3. No. There’s no point in having the 5-second rule, because:
a) It’s based on crappy science, and
b) The beagle eats anything that gets dropped on the floor within 5 seconds anyway.
4. No. Of course I can’t reach them. It’s just a cartoon. Jesus.

All good? Great. Happy to have been of assistance.

Charles the Nickname

It’s June 13th, and if you check the Wikipedia page for today’s date, you’ll see that on this date in 1381, the Peasants’ Revolt led by Wat Tyler culminated in the burning of the Savoy Palace.

Who Tyler? No, Wat Tyler.

But way, way before that happened, it was the birthdate of Charles, the Holy Roman Emperor. “Which Charles?”, you ask, knowing that there were several. Well, today is a birthday for two of them, actually – the unfortunate ones.


Yes, both Charles the Bald and Charles the Fat were born on this day just 16 years apart.
What are the chances?

A quick search of other Wikipedia pages reveals that other Holy Roman Emperors, such as Charles the Handsome, Charles the Devilishly Goodlooking and Charles the OMG Mavis, Int’ee Buff weren’t born on June 13th.
Because they didn’t exist. I made them up.

However, amusingly, reality is almost more ridiculous than whatever was going on in my twisted mind just then.

Firstly, we’re told that Charles the Bald shouldn’t be confused with Charles the Bold. The latter presumably being braver and more hirsute. Charles the Bold was Duke of Burgundy between 1467 and 1477, when he was succeeded by Philip the Good (one of the nicest of the Philips).

Whereas, Charles the Bald was, by all accounts, bald. He had several children, including Judith*, Louis the Stammerer, Lothar the Lame and then – when someone’s imagination ran out – Charles the Child. Charles the Bald was King of West Francia (843–77), King of Italy (875–77) and Holy Roman Emperor (875–77), succeeding his father Louis the Pious and being succeeded by… Charles the Fat.

Annoyingly for Charles the Fat, there’s actually no evidence that he was fat:

The nickname “Charles the Fat” (Latin Carolus Crassus) is not contemporary. It was first used by the Annalista Saxo (the anonymous “Saxon Annalist”) in the twelfth century. There is no contemporary reference to Charles’s physical size, but the nickname has stuck and is the common name in most modern European languages (French Charles le Gros, German Karl der Dicke, Italian Carlo il Grosso).

Unfortunate.

Charles the Fat (sorry) held the offices of King of West Francia and Aquitaine, Emperor of the Romans, King of Italy, King of East Francia and Alemannia during his 48 year life. Busy guy. He had one son, who never amounted to much, probably primarily because his name was Bernard (the Illegitimate). (Oops).

Reading this, and noting the rampant nepotism and huge opulence that were part of the daily lives of these individuals, I can’t help but wish that we had something akin to their use of appropriate descriptions in naming modern day politicians.

Jacob the Corrupt.
Gwede the Boep.
Helen the Repeatedly Foolish.
Julius the Mouth.
Fikile the Clown.
Malusi the Captured.

 

married firstly with Ethelwulf of Wessex, secondly with Ethelbald of Wessex (her stepson), and thirdly with Baldwin I of Flanders. Gosh.

Blocked

Today marks 50 years since the death of Dorothy Parker:

American poet, short story writer, critic, and satirist, best known for her wit, wisecracks and eye for 20th-century urban foibles

… and that’s rather an appropriate anniversary, given that this post nearly didn’t get written, simply because – as can happen to any writey person from time to time – I simply couldn’t think of anything to write.

It happens to the best of us. It infamously once happened to Dorothy too, as she described in a telegram to her editor:

Yep. That’s the puppy.

And I’m in no way comparing myself to Ms Parker, except maybe to say that if she hadn’t suffered with Writer’s Block back in June 1945, then you might not be reading anything here today…