Thursday, August 04, 2016


AMC broadcast an eighth episode of 'The Night Manager' last night! Due to the air conditioner in the lounge not working since last Friday, I haven't had the time or inclination to watch any more episodes. I am still sticking to my theory that AMC simply took the raw material and repartioned it.

Before devouring once again the book version of TNM, I started rereading the new DCI Banks novel. There were a few points which raised my sixth sense the first time around, but I didn't remember them when I wrote the connected blog entry. Rereading the first few chapters reminded me: until now, Banks has always drunk his tea black ("as it comes" is normally how author Robinson puts it). This time, he drinks with milk and sugar; hardly a hanging offence, but nevertheless uncharacteristic.

But one other mis-characterisation really stood out: it is implied that Banks once had an affair whilst he was married; this might have been a one-night stand after some office party. Such philandering has strongly been denied in the previous books; whenever Banks looked back on his marriage, it was always with either regret or pride that he did not have any extra-marital sex. So this snippet should have been removed from the book - in any case, it has no bearing whatsoever on the story. As it happens, it is connected to something which Robinson did get right - Banks' sometime colleague Burgess appears once again, and the bad blood between Burgess and Cyril (pub owner) is mentioned; this was due to Burgess 'having a tumble' with Cyril's wife in the third book of the series, many years ago.

Yesterday was my 60th birthday, I hung one more year on the line (thank you, Paul Simon). I had only modest expectations from the day: no headaches (I had a terrible migraine the day before), no arguments with people at work (there was one on Monday) and getting the air conditioner fixed. I am pleased to say that all three expectations were fulfilled. On the other hand, I spent two hours in an acrimonious meeting in the evening which I could have done without (I was only an observer, not a participant). The granddaughter came over for an hour, accompanied by her parents, so that was my birthday present.

Today is very humid; I have a small headache and a slight stomach ache, which are my normal reactions to the humidity. I hope that they don't develop into anything more unpleasant.

Jerry Donahue, guitarist with Fotheringay and Fairport, had a stroke a few days ago. From what I understand, he is slowly recovering. Get well soon, Jerry! We met in the summer of 1988 and had a pleasant conversation. I also wrote to him about a year ago, asking who played what on the Fotheringay song "The pond and the stream"; he replied that he would give a full answer when he had some time (he was probably touring at the time). Now it seems that I will never get an answer, selfish me. 

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