Sunday, February 19, 2012

BOOK REVIEW - Why It’s Kicking Off Everywhere – the new global revolutions by Paul Mason

reviewed by Alan Woodward
This book – the author’s third – is a volume of two distinct parts. The first part follows the pattern of his first publication in that it looks at the experience in different countries while the second part offers some miscellaneous thoughts, comparisons and explanations on what is happening now in the Arab Spring , and Europe too . This are of quite different approach – and quality - and while sometimes separated neatly into chapters, are also put in sequence with factual reporting. Hence the overall effect is something of a mish mash. The book , or reportage as the author would have it, is certainly timely, with occasionally insights , and in places quite significant politically.

For A’ That

Burns Night – as seen 56 years ago.
Gastronomic Immortality?

All over the world, at this time, elaborate preparations are being made to celebrate the anniversary of the birth of “Scotland’s National Bard” and to “honour” the ploughman poet who has found for himself a place, if not in the hearts, at least in the stomachs, of a wide variety of people in many countries and climes.

So now would seem as good a time as any for me to confess that I have never attended a Burns’ Supper. Not that I have any rooted objection to supping, or to Robert Burns – although he wrote almost as much bad verse as he wrote good – but rather because I cannot reconcile in my own mind two such separate appetites as one for food and one for poetry; and I feel that by trying to combine the two I would only succeed in confusing both. For me, there is no common link between a palate for whisky and haggis and an aesthetic appreciation of lyrics.