Sunday, 30 January 2011


Yes, it could be that serious. Many public libraries are under threat of shorter hours or even closure (20 branches in Oxfordshire alone).
5th February is national Save our Libraries day! Go to your library, borrow books, and (you can do this now) email or write to your MP to defend public libraries.
We should use our public libraries, they're a great resource and once lost, won't be replaced.
See: for info about libraries under threat,
and for what to do:

Sunday, 23 January 2011

Spirituality in music: Ex Cathedra

Harmonic spiritual theatre was the concert title: a selection of religious work by Monteverdi, Charpentier, Bouzignac and others - performed by Birmingham's own Ex Cathedra choir. Beautifully sung, precise, poised, rich tones and a real sense of spirituality.
Birmingham Town Hall, 22nd Jan '11.
Thanks to cuts in the support they receive from the local Council and the Arts Council, Ex Cathedra are losing £15,000 in funding this year.
To see how to support Ex Cathedra - go to .

Sunday, 16 January 2011

New Brum Café

A new Brum café (NB: not the one in the last post). Popped in and there were no gadgets on view, just a few people ... talking to each other!

Afternoon in the Apple cafe

Every table with a MacBook at it, one with 3 or 4 plus an iPad and (shock horror) a non-Apple laptop....
Guy behind me with the trendy white vest under grey open cardigan ... comparing notes on his phone .

My wife with an e-book reader.
In an independent new cafe in Brum, slightly off-centre (or that's what the Macfans think! :)

Feels like a scene from Private Eye's iBores cartoon strip. Everyone's alternative until they see everyone else being alternative too!

Huh. I'm sticking to my print book. My e-reader's at home! And I'm not looking at the iPod anyway, not until I've finished the next page ...

I read about a book called "I am not a gadget" by someone who'd turned his back on the world of electronic domination.

Maybe it's time to do that. Once I've finished this blog post on my netbook at home. But it's not Apple! No, it's cheaper and it shows. Doh!!

See this Birmingham Post article to read about new cafes in Brum.

Tuesday, 4 January 2011

Pots and people - in the Museum

In the super new(ish) Ashmolean galleries, Oxford.