Have just bought a lovely little 40G USB Hard Disk in a box, with cable
-so that I can back-up my ailing system (the computer -not my
biological body!)...... In a few days a friend will come and help install a new (Debian
based) operating system.... I don't know why -but I've never been happy
(iether in Holland or here) with Red-Hat versions of Linux....
Actually, it's quite amazing how "underground" Linux seems to be in
a commercial environment. The owner of the electronics shop told me that he
had a friend who was a Linux man -but he'd lost contact and hadn't seen
him for around eight years..... I'm beginning to suspect it would be
easier to join the NPA than find a Linux technician via the Cyberzone.....
It is (for an outsider) amazing how difficult it is to
find somebody here if you don't know their telephone number (or email adress
-I guess). In Europe there are on-line, hard-copy and telephone based
enquiry systems that provide telephone numbers (and adresses) for all
those who don't have secret numbers..... In this context, I seem to
remember that French citizens were introduced to electronic
communication systems when the telphone company decided that it was
cheaper and more efficient to give every telephone subcriber, instead
of a printed telephone directory, a "Minitel" terminal which could do
much more than just provide the telephone numbers..... The on-line
dating and chat service seemed to be the most popular -which I guess
was also a good example of technology preserving and promoting
traditional cultural cliches.....
"The Minitel is a Videotex online service accessible through the telephone lines, and is considered one of the world's most successful pre-World Wide Web online services. It was launched in France in 1982 by the PTT (Poste, Téléphone et Télécommunications; divided since 1991 between France Télécom and La Poste). Since its early days, users could make online purchases, make train reservations, check stock prices, search the telephone directory, and chat in a similar way to that now made possible by the Internet." <http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Minitel>
On the BBC website, it seems that apparently they have managed to discover "Inequality on show in
-I wonder if they'll ever find out who Bolante was and what his role in
things was..... Presumably, digging beneath the surface is work for
archeologists -and only starts when everybody is dead......
Incidentally, in England, the 5th of November is "Fireworks night".
"I drove home tonight watching and smelling fireworkes. Today is Guy
Fawlkes Day and bonfires are lit, effigies are burned and fireworks are
set off to celebrate the day Guy Fawlkes and several friends tried to
blow up Parliment. In 1605, Catholic Guy Fawlkes and his friends
decided that violent protest was all that was left to them after
Elizabeth I died and James I gave them a harder time than Elizabeth.
These men put 36 barrels of gun powder under the House of Lords. To
make a long story short, the King found out and when the army found the
barrels Guy Fawlkes was caught, tortured and executed. For some reason,
this started the tradition of having huge bonfires and setting off
fireworks. It is a really big deal with everyone taking off from work
early so they can be sure to be at the bonfire when it is lit."
"The Gunpowder plot was conceived
by a certain Robert Catesby from Warwickshire. Catesby was a Catholic
whose plan was to blow up Parliament during its opening ceremony on 5th
November 1605, when the king would be present in the Palace of
Westminster. With James I dead, Catesby would organize a Catholic
uprising in the Midlands, capture either the young Prince Charles or
Princess Elizabeth or both, and place one of them on the throne."<http://www.saburchill.com/history/events/004.html>
"Written early in the reign of James I (1603 1625), Shakespeare’s Macbeth
is a typical “Jacobean” tragedy in many important respects. Referred to
superstitiously by actors as “the Scottish play,” the script
commemorates James’s national heritage by depicting events during the
years 1040 to 1057 in his native Scotland. The play also celebrates the
ruler’s intense interest in witchcraft and magic, which was recorded in
a book he wrote in 1597 entitled Demonology. Further topical
allusions to the king include all the passages in the script mentioning
sleeplessness, which are relevant since James was a well-known
The most memorable references to Jacobean England
in the play, however, are those which chronicle events of the notorious
Gunpowder Plot--a conspiracy by Catholic sympathizers to blow up the
Parliament building and all the heads of state on November 5, 1605,
approximately one year before Shakespeare’s play was written. On that
date, Guy Fawkes and his band of Jesuit-sponsored papists smuggled an
immense amount of gunpowder into a vault under the Parliament, which
would have killed everyone in the building in a fiery cataclysm had the
king not detected the explosives prior to their detonation. According
to a recent book by Garry Wills, Witches and Jesuits (New
York: Oxford University Press, 1995), James claimed to have discovered
the plan by “inspiration” from God, who wished to save England from
Rome’s “Popish plot.” Through popular mythology following the event,
Jesuits were branded as “equivocators” who had tried to attack both
England and the Reformation through a perverse use not only of
gunpowder (“the devil’s invention”), but also of the very nature of
language, which they employed in double and triple entendre to hide
from the king and his court their fiendish intentions." <http://www.bard.org/education/resources/shakespeare/macbethfair.html>
See also the William Shakespeare Timeline <http://www.william-shakespeare.info/william-shakespeare-timeline-1593-1646.htm>
for more details of the interactions between Politics, Art and Religion
during one of the "Golden Ages" of British history..... With one of the
key elements (which still plays a role in the politics of Northern
Ireland) being the position of Roman Catholics in a society that became
"Protestant" on the personal whim of King Henry VIII (because the Pope
wouldn't give him a divorce)...... In late Tudor Britiain, Catholicism
wasn't just a religion -it could easily mean a treasonous heracy -even
though a few monarchs since Henry have been Catholic -including
Elizabeth I's own (half)sister.
"As long as her Protestant half-brother remained on the throne,
Elizabeth's own position remained secure. In 1553, however, Edward died
at the age of fifteen, after suffering ill health from birth. He had
left a will which purported to supersede his father's will.
Disregarding the Act of Succession 1544, it excluded both Mary and Elizabeth from succeeding to the throne and declared Lady Jane Grey, ward of Thomas Seymour, to be his heiress. A plot was formed by Thomas and John Dudley, 1st Duke of Northumberland who married his son, Guilford Dudley to Jane. Lady Jane ascended the throne, but was deposed
less than two weeks later. Armed with popular support, Mary rode
triumphantly into London, her half-sister Elizabeth at her side." <http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Elizabeth_I_of_England>
In a BBC programme on Shakespeare I heard that he
was Catholic too -and distantly related to the gunpowder plotters.....
According to the programme -the need to tread carefully with regard to
the religious politics of the day was what made Shakespeare such a
nuanced artist in comparason to his contempories..... Assuming, of
course, that Shakespeare did actually write the plays attributed to him.
"John Shakespeare's eldest son had been born in dangerous
times. It was less than half a century since the Queen's father, King
Henry VIII, had broken with Rome, despoiled and looted church
landholdings and shrines, executed notables from Sir Thomas More to two
of his own wives, including Elizabeth's mother.
The Elizabethan era was fast approaching its apogee — a sustained
period of military, political, scientific and cultural achievement
without parallel in British history. But it was also an age of
ferocious religious persecution. Herself a deeply devout and civilised
woman, Elizabeth presided with apparent reluctance over the pursuit,
torture and execution of papists, in sporadic purges of varying
intensity. But it was a time for followers of the 'old' faith to tread
carefully, to worship in corners — for some, if necessary, to deny
their faith or at the least 'equivocate'.
In 1757, a century and a half after John Shakespeare's death, a
document of great significance was found hidden in the rafters of the
family house in Henley Street — by then occupied by Thomas Hart, a
direct lineal descendant of William's sister Joan. Retiling Hart's roof
was a team of workmen led by Joseph Moseley, a master-builder described
as 'very honest, sober, industrious', who on 29 April came upon a small
'paper-book', or pamphlet, tucked between the old tiling and the
rafters. Its six stitched leaves turned out to contain fourteen
articles amounting to a profession of Roman Catholic faith." <http://www.englishhistory.info/Shakespeare/shakespeares-catholicism.html >
Apparently the British secret service (which of course doesn't exist)
was also well established in Elizabethen times -with the notorious
Walsingham as its head.... "Sir Francis Walsingham (c. 1530 – April 6, 1590) is remembered by history as the "spymaster" of Queen Elizabeth I of England. An admirer of Machiavelli,
Walsingham is remembered as one of the most proficient
espionage-weavers in history, excelling in the use of intrigues and
deception to secure the English Crown. He is widely considered as the
"Father of Modern Intelligence." " <http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Francis_Walsingham>
"‘Macbeth’ is the third of Shakespeare’s plays that deals with
monarchies, following on from Hamlet and King Lear. It was
probably written around 1605 and was firstly performed for King James I
around about 1607, just shortly after Guy Fawkes and some other
conspirators were caught plotting to kill the King. These
conspirators were Roman Catholic activists.
‘Macbeth’ was clearly a controversial play, dealing with the
assassination of a King, but one can assume that Shakespeare intended
the play to compliment monarchs, and it is no co-incidence that James I
was descended from Scottish ancestry. No doubt the subject of the
early Kings of Scotland would be interesting to the King.
It should be noted that Shakespeare quotes directly from James I’s
Handbook, which gives details on good government, in the play ‘Macbeth’.
As with the other works of Shakespeare, there have been numerous
adaptations and films over the years. Notable films are ‘Throne
of Blood’ by Akiro Kurosawa, 1957 and ‘Macbeth’ by Roman Polanski,
1971. Arguably the best portrayal of the title role was by Orson Welles
in a black and white film, which provided a realistic atmosphere.
There is a great deal of superstition about this play and actors
believe it to be bad luck to mention ‘Macbeth’, so they refer to it as
‘The Scottish Play’."
By some bizarre co-incidence, the father of a (Dutch) ex-colleague and
friend of mine -was shot in the head by a shot-gun in a hunting
accident on November the 5th (year unknown by me). Although until then
5 November had no significance in Holland -for my friend it meant that
as a teenager (and oldest child) she suddenly became head of a family
of four siblings -plus a severely disabled mother who had suffered a
series of strokes from the early age of 35. What aggravated this -was
the fact that although apparently everybody knew who was responsible
-for local political reasons, there was a cover-up and nobody was ever
held responsible for the most tragic event in my friend's life.
Feelings concerning a sense of justice haunted her for years after.....
inspiring her life as a person and her work as an artist and an
All my friends are wonderful and unique people. We may dissagree over
some things -and we may not always understand each other. However, I
revel in all their peculiarities (as I hope they do mine) and wouldn't
want to change anything about them -except, of course, where it might
perhaps make them even happier than they usually are.
It seems that art, life, electronics and the human mind all involve mysterious and complex interactions......
and I find those interactions aesthetically, emotionally and intellectually fascinating and beautiful......
The universe is my garden -and I enjoy watching it live and grow. Which
is why I get very upset when I see the destruction being caused by the
pusuit of commercial profit as the only thing that matters. On the
other hand, one can indeed learn much from the plants -especially the
way they bide their time until the time is ripe. Given time, plants can
destroy concrete and asfelt -presumably, without even knowing of the
existance of gunpowder. Even at my age, I still have much to learn
-from nature and perhaps from electronics....
<trevor at tebatt.net>
Manila, 5 November 2006