St. Peter’s in Petersham, London, could never be so full as it is on each 1 July, when the little building is full of displaced Canadians making a rare church visit to watch wreaths be laid upon Captain George Vancouver’s grave.
Vancouver didn’t discover his namesake city, the First Nations have lived there for thousands of years. He didn’t found the townsite—that occurred in 1862, 64 years after his death. He wasn’t even the first choice for the name, Hastings came first then Granville. But the Canadian Pacific Railway land speculators thought that was a hint of grandeur in the name Vancouver and that’s what they chose for their new end-of-the-line station in 1886.
We took the District Line to Richmond then, mostly, walked along the Thames to Petersham, and to St. Peter’s. Here is a short video I took of the memorial service for Vancouver’s Megaphone Magazine.
Canard, on the other hand, France’s only satirical weekly newspaper, is doing well in this ailing country. Circulation went up by 32 percent in the first two years after Sarkozy’s inauguration, and thanks the country’s numerous scandals it now prints 700,000 copies per week. Net profit was roughly €5 million ($6.9 million) in 2009. For decades, the paper has covered France’s scandals with credible and reliable reporting, while at the same time publishing decidedly malicious cartoons, tongue-in-cheek opinion pieces and fictitious columns by politicians.
The paper is owned by its editors and has an incredible cash reserve and property holding of €110 million.
One of the joys of having an unwritten constitution, such as the one that the UK operates under, is that it can a) bend to new circumstances and b) change in a heartbeat if someone refuses to obey stupid rules.
For the past 400 years, MPs have not had the option of resigning their seat, their only way out was to be disqualified. The honourable way of being disqualified was to accept an office of profit from the Crown. Two such positions, Crown Steward and Bailiff of the three Chiltern Hundreds of Stoke, Desborough and Burnham and the Steward and Bailiff of the Manor of Northstead were available, if applied to, and granted by, the Chancellor of the Exchequer. Otherwise, you’re stuck.
Today Sein Fenn leader Gerry Adams took a third option. Desiring to run for a seat in the Irish parliament, which does not permit sitting Westminster MPs, Adams sent a letter to the Speaker resigning his seat. No Crown Steward position. No Bailiffing. And 400 years of history are kaput.
Wow. Here’s the tour.
Mad Magazine’s fold-in artist Al Jaffee is interviewed by the Huffington Post Hint: he does the answer first, then draws the fold.
A beautiful little vignette on three 60s and 70s magazines published by Ralph Ginzburg, Eros, Fact, and Avant Garde.
Six months after Fact closed shop Ginzburg and Lubalin collaborated on their third periodical – Avant Garde. The magazine, which Ginzburg intended for “a rarified, even elitist audience” was both editorially and artistically equal parts of the sexuality of Eros, and counter-culture politics of Fact. Perhaps no other magazine so successfully captured the zeitgeist of the late 1960s:
The Big O is a sign with deep historical and cultural roots, part of our heritage. It didn’t deserve the neglect it suffered in recent times. It’s lived under many names: the hash, the crunch, the hex (that’s in Singapore), the flash, the grid. In some circles it’s called tic-tactoe, in others pig-pen. From a distance it looks like the sharp sign on a musical score. Whether you call it a pound sign or a number sign or anything else, it retains its identity. It’s so majestically simple that it always looks good, even if drawn by someone utterly without graphic talent. Good old #. It can’t go wrong.
Encroaching seas in the far Pacific are raising the salt level in the wells of the Marshall Islands. Waves threaten to cut one sliver of an island in two What happens if the 61,000 Marshallese must abandon their low-lying atolls? Would they still be a nation? With a U.N. seat? With control of their old fisheries and their undersea minerals? Where would they live, and how would they make a living? Who, precisely, would they and their children become?
It’s a question that the Marshall Islands, Kiribati, Tuvalu and other atoll nations will need an answer to very soon