Wednesday 22 June 2011

Have you got talent?

Belgian Cafe - Eastbourne Pier in the background
That talent show – personally it is one I do not watch .. there are too many negatives, but as with all stories of talent ... surprising gems emerge.  This surely has to be one of them.

I follow BK’s “Symphony of Love” blog as I love connecting with people around the world and BK lives in Singapore, but spends quite a lot of time in Malaysia ... so sometimes I can follow him on his tours, while his blog is inspirational.

To quote BK:
Just saw a video of a talent competition from Korea and there is this man who had lived in the street alone for about 10 years, from a young age, selling gums and energy drinks for a living. And yet he moved on bravely; just doing what he likes to do – sing.

He not only sings, he touches the hearts of the audiences and the judges. A lot of times, it takes someone like him to remind us of how fortunate we have been and how we may have taken a lot of things for granted.

Quoting something from John Gokongwei, Jr., “The important thing to know is that life will always deal us a few bad cards. But we have to play those cards the best we can. And we can play to win!” 

No matter how hard life may be for you right now. Continue to move forward courageously with faith that one day all will get better; it will surely get better!

It is the same thing; no matter what our situation is today, we can always choose to do the best with the situation and we can play it to win.

A thatched country pub, 
near Braunton, North Devon
This is the link – BK has the video embedded into her post – if you wish to go there .. but do please come back and let me know if you felt the same way that I did ... ie I felt I needed to share and was just bowled over.

Where’s your hidden talent?  This is just such an extraordinary video – and just check that judge’s face – I hate to think what Simon Cowell’s face would be like!  Not pretty!

Let me know your thoughts ..... You Tube: Korea's Got Talent (It is 8 minutes - but seriously this is so well worth it ....)

Joylene Butler who lives on that magnificently named island – Cluculz Lake, British Columbia ... always fascinates me that name!  Joylene has a winter/spring bet – when will the lake be completely frozen, and by what date will it completely thaw ... one of those seemingly endless questions!

By the way this link is for her blog – takes you to a recent article by Katherine Swarts – a good one on Social Networking for the Business Writer ... check it out ...

... as well as this link where Joylene blows her own trumpet .... well: two authors blow that trumpet for her with reviews of her new book “Broken But Not Dead” – definitely seems like a good read.

Sharnfold Farm Shop
Joylene has sweetly awarded me The Irrestibly Sweet Blog Award .. I’m seriously concerned I’m becoming a sweetie .... you know my mother called me that the other day – I’m sure she’s never called me that EVER in my life?!  “Sweetie” ...... me?!  Thanks Joylene all the same – always appreciate the awards, though am no good at complying with ‘dem rules and reg’lashuns!

I’ve had some friends here for Eastbourne tennis .. they stayed in a B and B, theoretically leaving me free to do my thing, visit my Ma, and catch up in the evenings.  I was the chauffeur as Jan broke her neck a long time ago and now struggles to walk ...

All was well organised – except for the wondrous English weather ... which stopped us all in our tracks ... the first day .. we had to go off and get socks, vests etc!!  Then just after 6.00 pm – please come and fetch us – we are FREEZING ... and off to the pub we went! – long pub!

Friday – it just rained ... no tennis at all.  So we had breakfast, shopped, visited a Farm Shop, got some fresh fish for supper ... went to another pub – can you see the link here?!

Cask Beers
Lunch for two was Beer and Rose Wine ... nibbles to keep the wolf at bay ... whitebait and chips, scampi and chips ... tonic for the chauffeur!  I left them in the pub and went supper shopping.  Brought them back here ... no we’re fine, warm enough ...  you go off to visit your Ma and we’ll see you in an hour or two.  Fine ...

... we’re freezing ... let’s go to a pub!!!  It is summer in England – and my windows are just open, but they told me they were warm enough before I went to Mum’s ... I said to myself .. we’ll see ....... !

So to another pub for supper we went ... we’d had lunch, but still .... then to the B and B to drop stuff off, back to previous night’s pub ... because they didn’t want to spend the latter part of the evening in a ‘dingy’ B and B ... I then came home!!

Marine Pub - covered garden
Saturday – hooray, it wasn’t raining ... they took a taxi to the tennis ... and they had a good day – still mighty cold ... so at 6.30 they’d had enough ...  then they came here and had more booze, as did I this time!, and a fairly simple supper ... with some good natter.

I’ve known Laurel for over 25 years and ‘of Jan’  .. but she was married and lived out on the mines at that stage.  About 15 years ago I’d meet up with them both in London, and Jan has since remarried and they spend half their life here and half in Cape Town ... last year was a bad year for us both – so we never caught up.  Long standing friends, with lots of mutual contacts from my days in Johannesburg, the squash scene, while working for Edgars and the Chamber of Mines.

Christmas Lights at Marine Pub!
The Marine Pub has visitors from all over the place – I, who live in this humble town, knew absolutely nothing about its claim to fame .. and good food ... 1,000 Christmas baubles, and 18,000 twinkling lights ... well I might take a look this year.  Doesn’t it look incredible – this comes from The Sun – a newspaper I don’t read!

So to whet your appetite ...  Old Sussex sausages with chips or mash; good old fashioned pie, chips and veg; Cod, mushy peas and chips ... all very tasty.  Pints of beer, some wine and just good old tonic water for the chauffeur!

Moules Mariniere
Belgian Cafe – moules mariniere – selected from the over 50 recipes, garlic bread and more beer and more wine ... I know – tonic water for the old girl chauffeur ...

Our supper here ... nibbles –olives various, sun-dried tomatoes in oil, pork scratching, prawns ... then fresh sea trout – that was delicious, with spinach and broad beans, asparagus, and new potatoes, followed by raspberries and Cornish cream ... and champers, which we all rather like!

Then I made sure they left town on Sunday! .. via the Fish Shack – where you can get fresh fish (but no beer!) ... which they took with them ... they followed me so I could direct them to the west onto the road to  Chichester, via Lewes, Brighton and on ...

Dear Mr Postman - such is life in Eastbourne once in a blue moon; My mother has been awake for some of the time and enjoys the tennis, and my stories of times in pubs!!

Hilary Melton-Butcher
Positive Letters Inspirational Stories

Wednesday 15 June 2011

Guess when this was first written – “I wrote 2 U B 4”?

Bombaugh's book available today
As we know the English language is constantly evolving; but I’m sure it will surprise many of us to learn that this expression was being used at least one hundred and fifty years ago, and possibly over two hundred years ago.

Great writers, poets and communicators throughout the ages have experimented and developed the written and spoken language ... which continues apace today.  Code, short forms had been around for centuries – and in a sense all languages and writing systems are codes for human thought.

Charles Carroll Bombaugh, who coined and spread text-speak during the 1800s via his book ‘Oddities and Curiosities of Words and Literature’, experimented with constrained writing including the  “univocalic” , that uses only one vowel within his writings – this is one of his best-known ones:

“No cool monsoons blow soft on Oxford dons,
Orthodox, job-trot, book-worm Solomons.”

David Crystal's book - available at the British Library
I visited the British Library's Exhibition on Evolving English a few months back, which was heaving with members of the populace!  So I had a look round, picked up David Crystal's book, some postcards on vocabulary and text-speak... 

... including the full version of this article, originating from the Columbia (Pa) Spy sometime in the early 1800s, here are four of the verses of "The Essay to Miss Catherine Jay" - (Katie Jay of Utica, or Uticay), which Bombaugh included in his book: Gleanings from the Harvest-Fields of Literature, Science and Art: A melange of Excerpta, Curious, Humorous, and Instructive (reprinted 1860).

An S A now I mean 2 write
2 U sweet K T J,
The girl without a ||,
The belle of U T K.

I 1 der if U got that 1
I wrote 2 U B 4
I sailed in the R K D A,
And sent by L N Moore. . . .

This S A, until U I C
I pray U 2 X Q's
And do not burn in F E G
My young and wayward muse.

Now fare U well, dear K T J,
I trust that U R true--
When this U C, then you can say,
An S A I O U.

In the original the pilcrow   “¶”   appears as a symbol showing the start of a paragraph, as do other symbols providing a challenge to modern readers.  Many of us will recognise the pilcrow, though I didn’t know it was called that, from our typing or publishing days.

Available from the Google electronic library are further examples, including Elizabeth G Bainbridge’s Schoolroom Games and Exercises – which elaborate on the spelling and composition as used at that time.

However - I still cannot make head or tail what ‘R K D A’ means: any ideas please to put me out of my misery – perhaps Arcadia?

... nor for that matter “I pray U 2 X Q's, And do not burn in F E G”: I’m sure it’s very obvious ... but my mind’s a blank, as it is with texting ... I query my education sometimes, and most definitely my recent modern techie one!  Then there’s LEG, appearing in the full verse, .. what’s that too ...?

This is some of the text as it appears in Schoolroom Games and Exercises:


I sailed in the 11 K 1) A,
And sent by L N Moore.
My M T head will scarce contain

1 calm I I) A bright,

But A T miles from U I must

M /—^^ this chance 2 write.
And 1st should N E N V U,

B E Z, mind it not;
Should N E friendship show, B true,

They should not B forgot.

Book of Kells per Wikipedia - Folio 34r
contains the Chi Rho monogram.   Chi
and rho are the first two letters
of the word Christ in Greek.
During the past two hundred years so much has happened in the communication world that we are now coping with the third major technological development of texting, after having conquered the telegraph and the telephone.

We still read and talk – just?! – our learning and history are embedded within the books lining the libraries of the world – now being available to all, especially with the advent of the internet ... but consider those medieval manuscripts that abbreviated words as a matter of course, to save space on precious and expensive parchment ... if anything it emboldened the world to write and record our words for posterity.

Will texting or text-speak finally give the death-knell to reading and writing – that I don’t think can happen for a long time as we need governance, rules and regulations ... in the meantime our brains have to cope with the new ways ... and that digit, our thumb, is finding a new life of its own.  Life is interesting ...

1)     U Not Thnk So?

C U B4 2 Long.

My M T head wil B Gr8ful 4 Normal Wri10 Comments

MYTe Gr8ful   ?!!

My inspiration came from the Evolving English Exhibition held over the winter 2010/2011 at the British Library - for further reading:  

The Origins of Text-Speak” written by Ben Zimmer.

Evolving English Exhibition: British Library – Curator’s Blog 

The whole essay can be found here under 'Emblematic Poetry' – Gleanings from the Harvest Fields of Literature ... captured and made available by Google books

Elizabeth G Bainbridge: Schoolroom Games and Exercises – page 4 (scroll down to number 60 - 61)

Last entry of British Library’s Evolving English Podcasts .. is the talk given by David Crystal on “Evolving English – One language, many voices”. 

British Library's main web page 

Dear Mr Postman – I expect you’ve been dealing with these sorts of things in letters for many years – but to me is something I need to get to grips with ... my mother will be interested though;  she has been quite awake recently and enjoying the summer season of festivities and sports.

Hilary Melton-Butcher
Positive Letters Inspirational Stories

Wednesday 8 June 2011

Happiness is ... spreading the sunshine and more awards, prizes and recognition ...

Lenny’s Fest has been extra special for all of us ... we can read it in the stories written, the poems drafted, the posts posted and then there’s all the comments with other bloggers saying to themselves ... I’ve missed something here –

-         So the best thing to begin June and the Summer with was ‘Spreading Lenny Lee’s Sunshine’ via the blog fest – with many thanks to all participants and especially Theresa, Sharon and Shannon for arranging so much blog warmth across to Lenny and his family ... WONDERFUL.

-         I won another prize ... this time a butterfly scarf, which I knew my mother would love – and which she did ... saying Granny would look good in that – well it’s mine Mother dear!  But I shall drape it over her picture, as in theatre drape style – so she can, for a while, see the butterflies and admire the very pretty scarf.

-         This came from Madeleine our Scribble and Edit blogger ... who does a little hand-crafting on the side – have you seen her lovely Cloth Doll Creations?  This is one clever lady .. who I thought only scribbled and edited ...  well this is for Madeleine:

-         There was a young lady from Devon
Who purported to scribble and edit
But on closer inspection
Swapped  paper for patterns
In order to craft and create.

So Madeleine many thanks for the pretty scarf ....

On to a sweet award . – The Irresistibly Sweet Award ... from Susane Drazic, of Putting Words Down on Paper blog, .. many thanks Susanne ... love desserts – had to add some Cornish Cream – now I’m a happy girl!!

Then there’s Judy’s giveaway by Judy Croome as part of her promotional tour for her new book “Dancing in the Shadows of Love” – I highly recommend it ... the Amazon Gift Voucher goes to Munir of Focus through a Lens... chosen by another resident at the Nursing Centre .. as my mother hasn’t really come to sufficiently to participate – parcels missing obviously: thanks Judy!! 

Nota BeneJudy is running her Give Aways til the end of June .. so please go over to her blog and enter her competition .. good prizes to win!!

Giving is better than receiving ... but quite honestly if I’m included in a list of happiness blogs ... my little world bubbles right over ...  and I was shocked and honoured to be included in JD Meier’s Sources of Insight post on “Happiness Blogs” ...  so I emailed JD and asked if I could copy the post across here.

Film interference on a bubble
JD has some wonderful resources on his blog ... so please check it out – bookmark it, subscribe to it and follow him ... he uses the knowledge he obtains working for Microsoft and well as the depths of his wisdom from his knowledge of the blogging and internet world.

He’s a published author ... so has lots of useful information tucked away in those tabs on his website ... and is humble and generous enough to reply to our comments and when in temerity I ask if I can post his Happiness Blogs post on my site ... back comes the adage ...

“Hey Hilary
What's the saying -- copying is the best form of flattery :)

So – a big thank you from me to JD Meier over at his Sources of Insight blog – enjoy having a look around his Happiness Blogs post .... also it feels comfortable ... it's an A-Z!

“Happiness is the meaning and the purpose of life, the whole aim and end of human existence” – Aristotle
Happiness is a skill you can learn and practice the rest of your life.
Whether you drive from happiness, pursuit happiness, or simply grow happiness right under your feet, you can draw from many sources to help you on your journey.
To help you on your happiness path, I created a map of happiness blogs.  It’s my roundup of blogs that can help you master the art and science of happiness.  You can use this map as a hub of happiness (or a “happiness hub”).
Enjoy your journey.

JD's Short List of Happiness Blogs

  1. Dr. Bob’s Life Phrases, by Dr. Robert Henry Schwenk
  2. Happiness Blog, by Michele Moore
  3. Happy Life, by T.S. Chin
  4. Happy Maker Now,by Debbie
  5. Pathway to Happiness, by Gary van Warmerdam
  6. Positive Thinking Blog, by Bonnidette
  7. The Happiness Project, by Gretchen Rubin
  8. The Happy Guy, by David Leonhardt
  9. The Positivity Blog, by Henrik Edberg
  10. The Pursuit of Happiness

A – Z (Insightful Happiness Blogs A – Z)

  1. Abundance Tapestry, by Evelyn
  2. Always Well Within, by Sandra Pawula
  3. Be Happy, by Lenora Boyle
  4. Be Happy, by Robert Moment
  5. Britetalk, by Andrea DeBell
  6. Chief Happiness Officer, by Alexander Kjerulf
  7. Complexity of Happiness
  8. Creating Happiness Blog, by Michele Moore
  9. Creative Affirmations, by Danea Horn
  10. Discovering Happiness Now, by Aurindam Mukherjee
  11. Dr. Bob’s Life Phrases, by Dr. Robert Henry Schwenk
  12. Elevation Life, by Bryan Thompson
  13. Enlighten Your World, by Veronica Sierra
  14. Find Your Happiness, by Diana
  15. Great Good, The Science of a Meaningful Life
  16. Happiness (Psychology Today)
  17. Happiness Blog, by Michele Moore
  18. Happiness Here, by Jennifer
  19. Happiness Inside
  20. Happiness Is, by Shannon Eileen
  21. Happiness Series
  22. Happiness Quotations, by Erica Nelson
  23. Happy Life, by T.S. Chin
  24. Happy Life Blog, by Jacqueline Johns
  25. Happy Life U, by Susan McMillin
  26. Happy Maker Now,by Debbie
  27. Heal Your Life
  28. Health and Happiness Club
  29. How of Happiness (Psychology Today), by Sonja Lyubomirsky
  30. Jannie Funster, by Jannie Funster
  31. Living with Certainty, by Kristi LeBlanc
  32. Matthew Ferry
  33. My Beautiful Adventures, by Andi
  34. Pathway to Happiness, by Gary van Warmerdam
  35. Positive Letters … Inspirational Stories, by Hilary Melton-Butcher
  36. Positive Provocations, by Zeenat
  37. Positive Thinking Blog, by Bonnidette
  38. Positively Present, by Danni
  39. Powerful Living, by Lorraine Cohen
  40. Rainy Day, by Lynn ├ůsnes
  41. Raising Happiness (Greater Good, The Science of a Meaningful Life)
  42. Relentlessly Positive, by Queen Simply Be
  43. Smile My Day
  44. Source of Happiness
  45. Stumbling on Happiness, by Daniel Gilbert
  46. The Alternaview, by Siby
  47. The Happy Guy, by David Leonhardt
  48. The Little Blog of Happiness, by Erimentha
  49. The Happiness Project, by Gretchen Rubin
  50. The Happy Seeker, by Christopher Foster
  51. The Positivity Blog, by Henrik Edberg
  52. The Pursuit of Happiness
  53. The Reflective Self, by  Dandy
  54. Think Big, by Raimi
  55. Work Happy Now, by Karl Staib
  56., By Leo Babauta
Some you will know ... but if like me - many you won't ... enjoy JD's site where he promotes Insight and Action for Work and Life .... 

Happiness is thank yous, giving, receiving and love ... Lenny and each and everyone of you embody these ... 

Hilary Melton-Butcher
Positive Letters Inspirational Stories