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Tuesday, 15 January 2008


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"As long as it's not porn" I said to myself.........

If I dug a straight hole from my living room, I'd 'surface' in the Southern Ocean, just east of the International Dateline and somewhere between New Zealand and Antarctica.

Fancy a swim anyone?

Sorry, I meant just west. Not that it matters.

I infer that many people must have missed the "antipodes" lesson at Primary School.

Difficult to remember that far back - even last week is an effort - but I probably didn't miss it, I was just misbehaving, I guess. Anyway, it's a relief to find the southern ocean at the end of my tunnel and not Australia - dread thought!

I automatically presumed everyone will picture a drill making a straight shaft on the line between the point a person's in and the center of the Earth, and continue it till it popped up on the other side of the globe.
Then I realized it's my professional [drafting] habits talking; the problem only asked for "a straight line" - and said nothing about the direction of it.

First of all, Tatyana, may I say that anyone with such a pretty and evocative name as yours will always be welcome at Duff & Nonsense!

However, you are shifting into a tricky philosophical area. As I understand it (which is not very well!), that nice Dr. Einstein told us that there was no such thing as a straight line, and that any effort to produce one would simply curve round on itself and disappear up its own fundament. This, of course, might explain the surly nature of the unfortunate inhabitants of the antipodes who would, as near as dammit, be the recipients of our drill points were we ever to drill through the core of the earth from here. Why anyone would wish to visit that former penal colony from *any* direction is beyond me. But that's another subject.

I'll forward your [pleasant] compliment to my parents, David - my part is only trying to live up to expectations they built into my name.
Dr.Einstein added one more factor into consideration: his lines aren't straignt in extended time, and we aren't seating on some star gazillion parseks(sp?) away and contemplating the drill problem.

You gave me an idea for a vacation...maybe I'll go to the Antipodes...well, they stupidly kicked off their nice PM, but I won't hold it against them -we're about to turn ourselves to socialist Dems, too. I hear the surfing is good.

First of all, Tatyana, and before you go anywhere near the Antipodes, I insist that you restart your blog! I have just had a quick look at it and the thought of a Russo(?)-American lady going to a Dorothy Parker party at the Algonquin is irresistible.

By the way, my advice is don't go anywhere near Australia, the whole place is quite appalling - apart from the fact that it is full of Aussies! Yes, I admit I have never been there, and yes, it's true that all my friends have been there and they like it so much they keep returning, but still, sometimes the long-view spectator sees more from a distance. There was a very short interval a couple of years ago when it would have been a pleasure to go there because we had just thrashed them at cricket for about the first time in a century (well, it seemed like a century!) and so one felt that it was one's duty to go and gloat. However, I missed the chance and now they have beaten us yet again so it's business as usual. Like most bitter Englishmen I prefer to sneer from a distance!

Oh you should have been there: bunch of snobbish socialists (naturally, in keeping with the theme of their society), and dressed very shabbily - not one hat in sight! There was only one lanky (and clumsy)girl in 1920's garments...sad, really. But the evening was interesting.

Australia: I see that I have to come to London first to learn Cricket Appreciation before descending on Sidney's beaches. Or reread Brian M posts on topic. Whichever.

Incidentally, I just received a newsletter from a city tour guide; he announced a new one you would appreciate: “THE RIALTO: THE THEATERS OF 1880”……Broadway from 14th Street to 42nd Street, in the age of Lillian Russell and Sarah Bernhardt.

I must keep a copy of that City Tour company in case I ever achieve my ambition of visiting 'Noo Yawk'!

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