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Monday, 13 June 2011
Playing with your life

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On your scooter, talking on your mobile phone, driving on the same street as my crazy taxi driver ...

Posted by bigblue on 13/06/2011 at 08:48 AM
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Sunday, 12 June 2011
Ubiquitous parking

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On Station Road East, Oxted.

Posted by bigblue on 12/06/2011 at 10:43 PM
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Friday, 10 June 2011
Cycling in Milan
Posted by bigblue on 10/06/2011 at 03:43 PM
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Thursday, 09 June 2011
The right to play

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I spotted this poster outside the supermarket on Saturday, drawing our attention to Article 31.1 of the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child:

States Parties recognize the right of the child to rest and leisure, to engage in play and recreational activities appropriate to the age of the child and to participate freely in cultural life and the arts.

The poster is advertising the international charity Right to Play, which was conceived from an Olympic Aid charity formed in 1992 by the Lillehammer Olympic Organising Committee (LOOC). 

More on the rights of the child at the Get Ready for Change organisation, a project led by children and young people themselves to check how well our Government protects children’s human rights, and to campaign for change.

Posted by bigblue on 09/06/2011 at 08:53 AM
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Wednesday, 08 June 2011
Spanish Names

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I was perusing in an Oxted charity shop the other day, when I spotted two copies of the same book, Shadow of the Wind by the Catalonian author Carlos Ruiz Zafón. One of the books was shelved under R (for Ruiz) and the other Z (for Zafón).

Under Spanish naming customs a person is traditionally named:

with a given name (simple or composite) followed by two family names (surnames). The first surname is the father’s first surname, and the second is the mother’s first surname. In Spain, this traditional order is reversible per current gender equality law.

If everyone reversed the order of the surnames, then the matrilineal lineage would be recorded. It would also work if all the women did this (across all generations). However if this is just done exceptionally then your one family name represents your mother’s father’s family name only.

So, should Carlos Ruiz Zafón be filed alphabetically under Ruiz or Zafón?  The correct answer is that he should be filed under Ruiz.

Link: Three Monkeys interview with Carlos Ruiz Zafón.

Posted by bigblue on 08/06/2011 at 08:29 AM
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Tuesday, 07 June 2011
The Meridian

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The Greenwich Meridian passes through Oxted as well as the nearby town of East Grinstead (in West Sussex). This photograph is of a marker that someone has erected at the end of the Forest Row Way.  It looks as if the plaque is decorated with Freemason symbols so obscure that, if Dan Brown saw them, he would start to feel a sequel coming on.

Link: Route of meridian through England.

Posted by bigblue on 07/06/2011 at 08:46 AM
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Monday, 06 June 2011
Silent number two

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The other day I noticed this packet which reads:

Silent Roar
...
This is a green product. The pellets are soaked in real essence of lion dung.

Quite right. There’s too much of that synthetic essence of lion dung being used these days ....

So lion dung is green and not brown?  And on another note, I wonder if the fertilizer will repel foxes from one’s garden?

Posted by bigblue on 06/06/2011 at 08:31 AM
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Sunday, 05 June 2011
Cycling today

We went out on the Forest Way Cycle Path today. Unfortunately the video ends just before the “crash” (the memory card of my camera was full).

Posted by bigblue on 05/06/2011 at 03:59 PM
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