Death List – Guy Hamilton


With the death of Bond film director Guy Hamilton, my last man standing death list is now down to the “final table,” the last ten.

They are:

Carol Channing 94
Clifton James 94
Fats Domino 87
Kirk Douglas 98
Liz Dawn 75
Liz Smith 93
Olivia De Havilland 99
Prince Philip 93
Billy Graham 96
Zsa Zsa Gabor 97

It could be years yet before the last one succumbs.

Death List – Nancy Reagan


I feel 2016 could be the year. Thanks Nancy for the point – go join Ronnie in that great ranch in the sky. Bye.


I’m an undecided, wavering towards staying in. In times like these I ask myself, what would Sir Humphrey advise?

Sir Humphrey Appleby: Minister, Britain has had the same foreign policy objective for at least the last 500 years: to create a disunited Europe. In that cause we have fought with the Dutch against the Spanish, with the Germans against the French, with the French and Italians against the Germans, and with the French against the Germans and Italians. Divide and rule, you see. Why should we change now, when it’s worked so well?

James Hacker: That’s all ancient history, surely.

Sir Humphrey Appleby: Yes, and current policy. We had to break the whole thing up, so we had to get inside. We tried to break it up from the outside, but that wouldn’t work. Now that we’re inside we can make a complete pig’s breakfast of the whole thing: set the Germans against the French, the French against the Italians, the Italians against the Dutch. The Foreign Office is terribly pleased; it’s just like old times.

James Hacker: Surely we’re all committed to the European ideal.

Sir Humphrey Appleby: Really, Minister. [laughs]

James Hacker: If not, why are we pushing for an increase in the membership?

Sir Humphrey Appleby: Well, for the same reason. It’s just like the United Nations, in fact. The more members it has, the more arguments it can stir up. The more futile and impotent it becomes.

James Hacker: What appalling cynicism.

Sir Humphrey Appleby: Yes. We call it diplomacy, Minister.

Driehonderd dagen

Ik heb Nederlands voor driehonderd dagen geleerd!


Anne Frank Huis

Ticket bought now for the Anne Frank Huis – only a 15 minute period though, so early to bed on the 9th.



Death List – Frank Kelly



Father Jim Sutton: Why is it always the good ones? You BASTARD! (shakes fist to Heaven) He could’ve been Pope! No no no, he’s dead Ted awww we’ll never see him again!
Father Ted: We’ll see him in the next world.
Father Jim Sutton: Oh yeah, sure!!

I had marked Frank out as the one most likely to win my Death List by being the last man standing, and as the second youngest on that list at 77 I had hoped he would make it. But sadly no. 38 down and 12 remaining.

Amsterdam, hier ik kom

The Netherlands, Holland, Amsterdam, Aerial

In a fit of rash impetuousness, without any forethought, I bought a KLM ticket to Amsterdam. I was then compelled to book a hotel.  £700 and 20 minutes later, I have my first holiday of the year booked. I’m in The Bridge Hotel, or as we fluent Dutch speakers say De Brug Hotel, so named as it’s adjacent to the famous Magere Brug or skinny bridge over the Amstel which you can see in the bottom right of the picture above.

Plans for this trip are:

  • Speak Dutch to a Dutch person without embarrassment
  • Understand as much Dutch as I can
  • Visit the Anne Frank Huis which I missed on my last visit
  • Pay an inquisitive (non-purchasing) visit to the red light area, which I also missed the last time
  • Revisit Den Haag and the Mauritshuis to see the Veermeers, including my special friend Het meisje met parel
  • Nip down to Delft or Leiden
  • Go somewhere else maybe Den Helder, Arnhem or Groningen
  • Smoke a whole spliff not chicken out at the namby-pamby half way stage
  • Visit some nice Rolex shops

Early May cannot come soon enough.


Dutch Ted Talk

Ted Talk by General Peter Van Uhm Nov 2011

Speech given in English.
Translated into Dutch by Rik Delaet Reviewed by Axel Saffran
Translated back into English by dkpw.

And if you see an underlined word in Dutch, that’s one I had to look up in my Van Dale dictionary! It was a fun exercise, not quick by any means but still a far more enjoyable experience than translating Latin when at school. If anyone with Dutch would like to correct my translation, please feel free!

Als hoogste militaire commandant van Nederland, met troepen over de hele wereld, ben ik echt

As the highest military commander of The Netherlands with troops over the whole world, I am

vereerd om hier vandaag te zijn. Als ik rondkijk op deze TEDxAmsterdam locatie, zie ik een heel

really honoured to be here today. When I look around at this TedTalk in Amsterdam, I see a very

bijzonder publiek. Jullie zijn de reden waarom heb ik ja heb gezegd op de uitnodiging om vandaag

special audience. You are the reason why I said “Yes” to the invitation to come here today.

hierheen te komen.

Als ik rondkijk, zie ik mensen die een bijdrage willen leveren. Ik zie mensen die een betere wereld

When I look around, I see people who want to contribute. I see people who want to make a better

willen maken, door het doen van baanbrekend wetenschappelijk werk, door het creëren van

world, through the use of ground-breaking scientific work, through the creation of impressive

indrukwekkende kunstwerken, door het schrijven van kritische artikelen of inspirerende boeken,

artworks, by writing critical articles or inspiring books, by setting up sustainable businesses. You

door het opstarten van duurzame bedrijven. Jullie hebben je eigen instrumenten gekozen om deze

have chosen your own instruments to carry out this mission of creating a better world. Some chose

missie te vervullen van het creëren van een betere wereld. Sommigen kozen de microscoop als hun

the microscope as their tool. Others chose dancing or painting or making music like we have just

instrument. Anderen kozen dansen of schilderen of het maken van muziek zoals we net hebben

heard. Some chose the pen. Others work through the means of money.

gehoord. Sommigen kozen de pen. Anderen werken door middel van het instrument van het geld.

Dames en heren, ik maakte een andere keuze. Bedankt. Dames en heren – (Gelach) (Applaus) Ik

Ladies and gentlemen, I made another choice. Thank you. Ladies & gentlemen, I seek the same.

streef naar hetzelfde doel. Ik deel de doelen van de sprekers die aan het woord zijn geweest. Ik heb

goal. I share the goal of the speakers who have already spoken. I have not chosen the pen, the

niet gekozen voor de pen, het penseel of de camera. Ik koos voor dit instrument. Ik koos voor het

paintbrush or the camera. I choose this instrument. I choose the gun.



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