Another Dark Little Corner

moon phases

Started this before change to "New Blogger", as backup in case of trouble with digiphoto blog "In a Small Dark Room", or rants & links blog "Hello Cruel World" . Useful - at one stage Dark Room was there, but like the astrophysical Dark Matter, we could't see it ... better now, but kept Just In Case.

Your ABC

Click here to find out why.

There is nothing. There is no God and no universe, there is only empty space, and in it a lost and homeless and wandering and companionless and indestructible Thought. And I am that thought. And God, and the Universe, and Time, and Life, and Death, and Joy and Sorrow and Pain only a grotesque and brutal dream, evolved from the frantic imagination of that same Thought.
Mark Twain (letter to Joseph Twichell after his wife's death)
[me, on a bad day]

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Photo Template File Toast — Hope I can fix it  
I haven't done anything to it, but the template file on my photo blog, In a Small Dark Room, has been damaged (a chunk of the end is missing). Thus viewing it is pretty stuffed. The archives are not accessible either. This may have to do with the beta-Blogger shift going on, because it was originally set up in a sub-directory of the main blog.
I have other urgent things to deal with, but will get to working on fixing this when I can.


UPDATE: Did a quick and dirty fix. I hope you can see what you need to now. Sigh. Probably had better things to do with a fine Sunday arvo.

If you're desperate <ahem>, have a look at an 'emergency backup' photo blog, Darkroom, or my photos on the Flickr site. The first is a lot more recent, and doesn't have a lot of the useful (& important to me) earlier things; the second doesn't have most of what isn't mine, nor most of the added information or comments.

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A Pleasant Place to Wander in  
A Pleasant Place to Wander in
"This is my blog. Sometimes I don't write for a while, that usually means that I'm doing something else. I didn't forget about you though. I like you."
I may adopt this as a reminder for this blog too.

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Anniversary: an Earlier 9/11 — Broken Glass & Ashes  
Anniversary: The First 9/11 — Broken Glass & Ashes
(In Australia 9/11 is November 9th).

Remembering 'Kristallnacht' - 9/11/38

An eyewitness account ( ). There you can see Erich Kästner's description of "Crystal Night, 1938", as well as his attendance at the 1933 burning of his, and 23 other authors' books. It was also mentioned in a post in February (

In 1938, incensed by hearing of his family in Germany being forced into "relocation camps" in the November snow under Nazi laws, an adolescent Jew in Paris shot and killed a German diplomat.

Goebbels used this for propaganda about conspiracies against Germany, inciting Germans to "rise in bloody vengeance", culminating on the long winter night of November 9th in organised widespread violence. Non-Jews who protested were beaten. Police and firemen watched people brutalized, buildings smashed, looted and burnt. Morning footpaths were impassable under an icy glittering crust of broken glass and ashes.

Lack of public protest encouraged the Nazi government to pass even more repressive laws in the next few months. Prominent Germans who protested were arrested. Ordinary Germans who protested were beaten up.

Can we hope that we've learnt from last century's several examples of disasters wrought by stirring up the darker side we all have - for power, for gain, for dogmatic religion or ideology?

Note the winding-tighter spiral of assassination, having been sparked by rage at the laws & treatment following the Reichstag fire, being used as pretext for Kristallnacht, which sparked the next round of ill-treatment & laws giving more power to The Party, und so weiter. That's why I detest the violent political language particularly around in recent right-wing US commentary, but not exclusive to them.

Two sites of many others about it: and

I particularly like the knife-twist, so typical of current 'economic fundamentalists' of indemnifying the Jewish community to pay for the damages, for example by confiscating their insurance payouts. Relatives were also billed for execution expenses in Nazi Germany. It reminds me of recent British stories of released prisoners whose convictions were quashed being charged for their keep (from March 2007, the Bridgewater Three, Wrongly convicted men must pay 'lodgings' costs for prison, and Warren Blackwell), and of course our own Respected & Beloved Government's way of discouraging rejected refugees in a similar way. Can't promise I'll put the links to those stories, but they're there, in solid factual reports.

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Toasted Mastectomy  
They were right; it does get worse after the irradiation is finished (see photo below). This is actually good compared to the bad effects on their skin others can get, and so far it hasn't had the hideous internal effects that my radiotherapy for the last cancer did, though it is painful and uncomfortable and limiting. Latest photo (NOTE: Some photos were taken in a mirror, some direct. Maybe I should flip them so they all look the same way around.):

[NOTE: My 'hide behind a cut'-technique isn't working, so I've tried to disguise the grusomeness by putting a kitty as the thumbnail that you click to go to the medical section.]

reddened scar'

Shininess is lots of moisturiser. Also have a water & glycol based semi-liquid wound dressing' and a large square hydrocolloid-type more solid one. I can smear the liquid one onto the solid one and apply it, or use the square hydrogel by itself. So far the best way to hold it all on has been knitted cotton tubing I wear like a boob tube top, with a soft pad under the edge over the sore bits. To keep it from rolling down, the nurse cut a slit in one side that I put my arm through, creating a sort of strap over that shoulder which also stops the top of the square dressing from flapping over, without having to tape it down. It took a while to work all this out, but now I can set myself up & get dressed, then lay down for a while & go to work pretty well.

The fatigue isn't good, but. Have missed a bit of work. Those easy-make food packs I laid in before have been useful, not so much for the sort throat as just being able to heat'n'eat. The weather's been cold, so warm food is OK. Otherwise I might have even eaten some stuff cold, just 'cos keeping up the nutrition to help the body heal is an important aim.

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Lovely News  
Joyous celebration is due to the fact that at long, long, last, a DVD of Oh! What a Lovely War, the 1969 Richard Attenborough/Len Deighton film of Charles Chilton's play is now available!

At least in the UK and USA. Here's hoping someone will sell it in Oz too.

NTBCW the soldier's memoir of WWII by the same name, which is also relevant to how 'ordinary soldiers' experience war. It would make an interesting companion.

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Went to last opera of the season last night - Pirates of Penzance. I'd forgotten, or hadn't realised before, how much of it was broad satire on operatic conventions. A good fun production, with Antony Warlow channelling Depp's Captain Jack Sparrow as the Pirate King, and the chorus of pirates/police having a fun time. I loved the pirate's costumes. Meanwhile, the orchestra is dressed in British redcoat 19th century uniform. Maestro Castles-Onion didn't come up on stage, but they all took bow in the pit. It was very tempting to take a photo or two. I contented myself with the final image we're left with, it relates back to the start (see below). Very appropriate for the last 2006 show.

Start of play is the lights spelling out The Pirates of Penzance all out except for one flickering globe. Character comes on, fiddles with that, and all light up, then the flat with the lights goes up and the action starts.


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