Friday, 25 January 2013

STUMBLING ON . . . Friday 25th Jan. 2013

Stumbling Over Bin Bags
A metaphor? Unfortunately, no. Now, I've got this sort of habit of falling over things. Being clumsy, you might say. So there I found myself, yesterday, walking to the library, engrossed in a copy of Virginia Woolf by Hermione Lee, when I took a tumble. Half a dozen black bin bags in the middle of the street. I caught myself before I hit the floor, and thankfully didn't lose my page. I've walked into lamp-posts before, and tripped over paving slabs, even walked into traffic light posts, but bin bags are a new one :)
Being a house-husband is a pretty solitary thing. Ninety per cent of my time is spent on my own. There's the cleaning and the shopping and the writing where I can, of course, but it can be a lonely old thing at times. Which is why I sometimes find myself scanning the internet for the oddest things. I love cheese on toast. Not so much the Welsh Rabbit thing, but you know, proper cheese on toast. But under the grill, there's always the risk of me forgetting about it and the whole thing burning to bits. So there I was, scanning the internet for the best way to make cheese on toast. And I found it.

Cheese on toast connoisseurs, here we go . . .

 Mmm . . .

You will need:
two slices of bread
butter or marg.
Preheat oven to 250C (480F).
Spread a load of butter on the bread
Stick the buttered bread on a baking tray lined with foil or baking paper.
Cook for three minutes.
Chuck the cheese on to completely cover the bread.
Back in the oven for another 5 minutes.

Lovely :)

And now for another review.

Just after Christmas, I read Richard Bach's OUT OF MY MIND

This simple, rich parable about our processes of inspiration tells the story of Bach's discovery of a parallel universe which provides design solutions while we sleep.

The problem was the door. It wouldn't stay open.
On a Piper Cub, the door is in two pieces - one wide trapezoid for the top half, with plexi-glass for a window, another for the bottom half, covered in yellow fabric, the same as the rest of the airplane. The bottom half works fine because as soon as it's unlatched it drops right down, and the weight of it keeps it there.

Richard Bach is best know for the amazing JONATHAN LIVINGSTON SEAGULL and the equally brilliant ILLUSIONS. Many of his books are concerned with exploring the metaphysical through the medium of flight. And in OUT OF MY MIND, it is a problem with his own aeroplane - a Piper Cub that is the catalyst for the book

A Piper Cub something or other

Some sort of latch wotsit is faulty. He sits by the fire, drowses, enters that state of half-sleep/half-awake that John Terry so often occupies when confronted with a moral dilemna

 John Terry - a leader amongst men.

and the latch appears, floating before him. But it is not his latch, it is a new improved latch. And just before he awakes, the face of a dark-haired woman appears in his mind. Next morning, he makes the latch, and it is a perfect design. But what of the woman?

A while later, a problem with the petrol cap on the plane. Bach goes through the same John Terry process, and the solution appears. This time, he sees more of the woman and clues to where she might work, and where she might exist in space and time.

Thus begins Richard's metaphysical quest for the Saunders-Vixen Aeroplane Company - a company that specialises in feats of the imagination.

OUT OF MY MIND is a beautiful book. A parable, if you will, of the art of creativity. 

Much like ACROSS THE RIVER AND INTO THE TREES being not as widely lauded as one of Hemingway's best, OUT OF MY MIND is the same for Richard Bach. Not sure he could ever live up to JONATHAN LIVINGSTONE SEAGULL - an albatross around his neck, perhaps.Or a seagull. Nethertheless, Bach is one of those writers that is always seeking new ground, mining the seam of metaphysical gold he stumbled upon with JLS. The seagull JLS:

 A work of gentle genius


OUT OF MY MIND seems to be out of print on Amazon UK, but is available from Amazon market sellers here for mere pennies. It is available from the US here

Currently reading:

Days without coffee: 25
Days without chocolate: 25
Days without biscuits: 25 . . . sort of . . .
AWM2 wordcount: 26,101


  1. It was the cheese on toast that got me onto this page. Well done with the 23 days without chocolate and coffee. I wish I could be as good. Great page btw. Next time can we have a hunky guy posing,instead of John Terry! Love Maggie Jones

  2. Hi Maggie.

    Lovely to see you here :)

    It's actually 25 days - damn that cut and paste . . .

    Think I've broke the back of it. Going round me mum's will be the test, though. Home-made cakes and damn fine coffee, as they say.

    And John Terry, I won't have a good word said about him. Not on this site :)

    Look after yourself, Maggie.

    Have a great day,

    Ian :)