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Mary was a little younger.

Book: The naked eye

I recall many things that they told me but one thing has relevance for a blog concerned however obscurely and nearly half a century later , with style: they cautioned against the use of ballpoint and felt-tipped pens and said that a man's character should be allowed to shine through his handwriting and that this was possible only when he used a lead pencil or a dip or fountain pen.

I have to say that, in the pace of modern life, for which the computer is the usual tool, aided by notes scribbled with anything to hand , I have often neglected their good advice. But I have never forgotten it and, for any significant document or letter, I should always employ it. Noel Coward In Cabaret. Churchill apparently then told him to go and entertain the troops and so he devised a cabaret act for this purpose, which went down very well and he continued it to great acclaim, afterwards; first at the Cafe de Paris and then in Las Vegas.

The critic Kenneth Tynan wrote of the Cafe de Paris act: "He padded down the celebrated stairs, halted before a microphone on black suede-clad feet, and upraising both hands in a gesture of benediction, set about demonstrating how these things should be done. One of the most famous and most desired motor cars ever built by Bentley was the series of four door Continental saloons, built from , which attracted the name the 'Flying Spur'. In fact the flying spur as shown in the photograph is the heraldic crest of the Johnstone clan in Scotland; by legend, awarded to them for helping Bonnie Prince Charlie escape.

The idea for this motor car began with the R Type Continental, two door coupe, made by coachbuilder H J Mulliner of lighter aluminium and incorporating other modifications for a faster machine. It was then considered that such a long car could easily be given four doors, without sacrificing the sports' styling and, in , the Bentley Flying Spur four door Continental was born.

Between and , there were eleven variations, including two different engines. Coachbuilder James Young also produced a very sleek version of the S1 Continental and many regard this as the best of all Flying Spurs; only twenty two were built, although some of these may have had two doors.

Production continued into the S3 series, made by H J Mulliner and James Young and there were also Rolls Royce versions produced but these were not really Flying Spurs, as that name was officially applied only to Bentley versions. The name is again in use for a modern Bentley model. But given a choice of the James Young model in the photograph and one of the modern cars, I know despite the advantages of 'all mod cons' , which I should choose.


Friday, 23 July Bristol Cars. Here are some notes for part of Book III: "Bristol cars had begun production after the Second World War, as a result of a down-turn in the need for airplanes which the Bristol Aeroplane Company had produced to that point; including the Brisfit, the Blenheim and the Beaufighter. Their Olympus engine, originally designed for the Vulcan bomber, was later famously modified for Concorde.

The first Bristol motor car was the Type However, the car division became a wholly owned subsidiary of the main company in Crook Mr Crook is the owner of Bristol Cars Ltd still - and this independent, British motor car company continues to this day; producing and selling, direct, with no dealerships , a small number of handmade, elegantly under-stated, performance touring cars; the latest of which are the Blenheim 3, 3S and SG but there is also the sports Bristol Fighter, which began production in and reaches approximately mph with a V10 7, cc engine and has an acceleration from in 4 seconds.

There is also the more powerful Fighter S. There must be worse ways in which to spend well over a quarter of a million pounds. The Bristol Fighter T is also now in production, with a claimed top speed of mph. Zagato-bodied Bristol motor car: the Bristol some with coachwork by the Italian coach-maker Zagato was the last Bristol motor car to carry the 2 litre Filton-built engine stretched to 2.

There were six special-bodied saloons and one coupe on which Zagato made the coachwork. Bristol Blenheim Speedster: this is a modern interpretation of a s prototype sports car, known as the Bullet. The original was never put into production. However, the car was used for tests until the s, when it was laid up and forgotten.

Re-discovered in the s, it was restored. Bristol Cars will make a small number of up-dated reproductions to special order. The price is not advertised. Like so many great things, if one needs to ask the price, one probably cannot afford it. The new car is called the Speedster and is based on the Bristol Blenheim chassis and drive train.

The car carries a 5, cc V8 engine, accelerates from in an impressive 5 seconds and has a top speed of mph. The photograph shows the Fighter T and is a Bristol Cars' photograph". This is, actually, the picture that I had in mind, when I posted on this subject a few days ago: NC at his home, Blueharbour, in Jamaica which has just opened as a holiday resort. His other house, Firefly, on the hill above is open as a museum; he is buried, on a slope overlooking the ocean, there.

Tricker's used to do these slippers readymade in post box red. Now you have to go bespoke or special order on a standard last for that colour. Cover Design For Book 2. I have just received the cover design for Book 2 and it is much more interesting than Book 1. Browsers who wonder about the cartoon of the fight will have to look inside!

As before, although some history is included, in this book, it is really a guide to what's what for Men About Town and it also covers more than just watches, colognes, cufflinks etc. So there is no point in complaining about the title this time. The fact of the matter is that my publisher is a history publisher and that is why the main titles have 'history' in them; they have kindly given me much freedom in the subject matter and allowed me to cover things that the modern puritans frown upon, so the main titles are a small price to pay.

Habanos SA has just introduced three new cigars, under the elite Cohiba brand, that was originally created for Fidel Castro in and only made more generally available in They were originally made in secret and under high security, for the President, to avoid sabotage as some of Castro's enemies had the idea of blowing his head off with an exploding cigar! Presumably, now, the young Princes, who appear to smoke, will be on the bandwagon but, somehow, I doubt whether their courtiers will advise them to smoke big Havana cigars infront of the paparazzi , for fear of fomenting republican feeling.

Stacrobats by Ravensburger | Etsy

There has to be an irony in that. However, points to the Princes for smoking at all and, for doing it in public, they deserve a gold cigar case each. The new range, called 'Behike', is named after the priest or medicine man who led the ritualized smoking of the tobacco leaves. These cigars include the rare Medio Tiempo leaf which comes from the very top leaves of some sun-grown plants and not all plants produce it. Of course, these cigars come at a premium price but they are held out as the best of the best, in terms of modern Havana cigar production. Tuesday, 20 July Landmark for Blog. I am delighted to be able to tell you that,after ten days and much against my expectations, there has just been the thousandth visit including repeat visitors to this blog and I am very grateful for the interest that has been shown in it.

Rowse's hankering after Trenarren House, nestling in splendid gardens and woods, at the head of a magical coombe, leading down to the sea and a little beach at Hallane, dated from his boyhood and his father predicted that one day the boy might live there. In fact, it wasn't until that he took a lease of it, but he lived there until he died.

The top two pictures show Trenarren House, which he never owned outright. As a youngster, Daphne du Maurier went on holiday with her parents to Cornwall, to stay in Ferryside at Bodinnick by Fowey, a former boathouse in imitation of a Swiss cottage, which her actor-manager father, Gerald, had bought with the proceeds of one of his plays. She never really left.

For some years she then trespassed on land belonging to the Rashleigh family and discovered the deserted Menabilly and hankered after it, until the owner granted her a twenty year lease of it, in time for Christmas This house is shown in the lower two pictures. Most famously, it was the setting for her novel Rebecca and the long winding drive and the beach cottage in the book, exist in fact. But, just the same as A.

The Rob Roy and of the Haggis. Adding Drambuie to a Rob Roy makes it into a Robbie Burns , named after the celebrated Scottish poet, author of many poems including Auld Lang Syne, whose birthday is still marked with celebration on 25th January 'Burns' Night'. At the supper, a large sheep sausage traditionally cooked in a sheep's stomach , called a haggis, is piped to the table and 'addressed' in a poem called Address to a Haggis.

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Scotch whisky is the usual accompaniment! Monday, 19 July Aristophanes "The Clouds".

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An exchange on a forum reminded me of something that I read in A. Rowse's autobiographical A Cornish Childhood. When he was a boy, he bought a secondhand book in St Austell Market House. It was " The Clouds " by Aristophanes. When he got it home, he realized that it bore the initials of a previous owner "A. On one occasion, when there was an evening in his hometown of St Austell, to help raise funds to supplement his scholarships, a local tradesman handed up a note to Q who was speaking on A.

When A. Apparently, the book had been wholly disregarded as anything of especial note, and sold to a general book-dealer. I tracked him down but it had already been sold on. I just hope that the new owner fully appreciated its significance. Given a choice between a splendid motor car and that little book, I should choose that book. The picture is A. The Pagoda, Blackheath Village. Blackheath Village, on the southern rim of London, near Greenwich, is a delightful place and one of the few true villages to have retained its separation from all the suburban sprawl. It is helped in this by the existence of Greenwich Park and the heath itself, which is famous for several things: the first golf course outside of Scotland; the first hockey club; the selection of the first English rugby team, in the Princess of Wales pub, for the first rugby international between England and Scotland in ; and the Cornish uprising of , in rebellion against taxes that violated the rights of the Cornish Stannary Parliament.

It was almost certainly also along the ancient Watling Street, which stretches across the heath, and on to the Dover Road, that Beau Brummell fled in his carriage on the night of 16th May The Pagoda, dating from , was one of the first houses built here for the Duke of Buccleuch , before the village became a dormitory for London workers on the coming of the railway.

"The Naked Ape" is a bestseller! - Desmond Morris

It was built as a summer house for Montagu House, which formerly stood next to the Park Ranger's House, and was probably designed by Sir William Chambers. It has a steep pagoda roof and is altogether in a Chinese style. It is a private residence and may be viewed only from the outside. It became, for a time, the refuge of Princess later Queen , Caroline, after the Prince Regent banished her in , until she moved to Montagu House. She was followed by scandal in both of these places, as well as in Italy, leading up to the Trial of Queen Caroline, under the guise of the Pains and Penalties Bill of , by which George IV as he had become sought to divorce her and deny her the title of Queen.

The Bill made the King even less popular and the Queen was cheered in the streets. The Bill was withdrawn, after the taking of evidence and debate in the House of Lords, where it was passed by a slim margin, as the government realized that the chance of its passing in the House of Commons was remote.

However, the delightful Pagoda remains and, if you are in the area, is certainly worth a visit; as is The Paragon, a glorious crescent of houses, dating from The Paragon is shown in the top picture and The Pagoda in the second.

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Sunday, 18 July Noel Coward's Slippers. Having mentioned slippers, in a recent post, here's a mention of Noel Coward and his: they were made by R. The illustration shows him in a scene with Lilian Braithwaite , wearing a pair, in the Grecian style, in a shot from his play The Vortex which, staged at the Everyman Theatre in Hampstead in , marked the beginning of the rise of his star as a playwright and a performer.

His dressing gowns were made by Sulka, which is set to be reborn; although the timetable, according to the current owners of the name, is unfortunately hazy. Cretinous Celebrities and Dunning Designers. It is late and I am tired.