Wednesday, 24 March 2010

Oddments from the past week 24th March 2010

The Staffordshire Hoard - not your average day with a metal detector.
For those who have not heard of this, it is a collection of Anglo-Saxon, gold and silver artifacts found last year in a field in Staffordshire (Alan’s home county).  1,500 objects have been found and have been valued at £3,285,000.The man who found it and the owner of the land will be paid the money as a reward – I should think they are happy bunnies!
What really caught our attention is that this same field has been swept with a metal detector several times before and never produced anything. It does make you wonder what else is lying beneath our feet.
A selection of the treasures will be on display at the British Museum in London till 17th April 2010.
The Russians are coming – or perhaps not
A news broadcast in Georgia (Europe, not the US) spread panic with a report that Russian tanks were in the capital and the President was dead.  They claimed that “the aim had been to show how events might unfold if the president were killed.”
The broadcaster apologised later!
The story reminded us of  the 1938 radio version of “The War of the Worlds” which caused panic in New Jersey for people who joined late and just caught the fake news item.

In 1994, there was panic in Taiyuan, China, after a TV report of a deadly creature on the loose. It was a commercial for a new brand of liquor. On refreshing my memory by means of Google, I came across the Museum of Hoaxes and an hour slipped happily away.
Dan Dare is nearly 60
This is really for the two Daves (brother and son) and, of course, Alan who found out this shocking fact.  If you’ve never heard of Dan Dare, it’s time you did.  I can’t show pictures as they are all in copyright to ‘The Dan Dare Corporation Ltd’ – I kid you not. A google search on Dan Dare will give you 2,530,000 results including this.  Enjoy.
‘The Eagle’ was a comic, published 1950 - 1969, and ‘Dan Dare, Pilot of the Future’ was a lantern jawed, English space hero.  There was a sister comic called ‘Girl’ – which I thought was stupid and much preferred ‘The Eagle’.
A website on Frank Hampson (who drew the intrepid hero) and the website of ‘The Eagle Society’ will tell you more.
The Centurion
Last month, we both re-read ‘The Ninth Legion’ and discovered while googling round the subject that no less than two films are being made based on the book.  Now the trailer is out for the first one – looks good.  I did have the irreverent thought when the battle first started that perhaps the two film crews had got mixed up and it wasn’t really the Picts attacking.

I presume that is supposed to be woad on her face?  There is an old song about woad – it recounts the ancient British tradition of fighting naked and covered in woad dye.  I thought it was a Boy Scout song but found the words credited to the Royal Canadian Army Cadet Songbook, of all places.
Sing-along to the tune of ‘Men of Harlech’.
PS ‘Braces’ is English, English for ‘Suspenders’ in American English.

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