Showing posts from June, 2010

Walking on Water.

Walking on water is one of those things that does not normally happen too often. All considerations of the divine to one side, it’s a question of optimism over physics, mass over buoyancy - and mass wins. Attempts at water-walking inevitably end with wet feet, laughter from colleagues and embarrassment. The scale of the embarrassment is directly proportional to the degree of wetness. We learn this at an early age. And yet we still try to outrun that sinking feeling associated with water walking - it’s as if we believe that you really can get your foot out of the hole you have made in the water faster than the water can get back in. Speed walking once immersed is only likely to result in tripping over - which leads to greater wetness, more laughing and increased embarrassment. However, a compromise version of water walking is available - one with significantly reduced wetness and only slightly reduced enjoyment. You can walk along piers and jetties. You can linger in the middle of bridg

Come into my parlor ........

There have been a number of articles in the papers this week about animals - predictable animals, popular animals. The PR departments that are employed by dolphins, pandas and dinosaurs must be very pleased with themselves. There have been no articles that I have noticed about slugs or hyenas, and definitely no articles about spiders, which is a shame as this time of year their webs are easy to find on trees and fences. Spiders. The word above is a kind of spoiler alert for those who have no fondness for these eight legged beasts. Although I have not seen it for a number of years, I can remember fields silvered with the webs of tiny spiders, catching the early morning sun, diamonded with dew. If you walked through the fields your shoes and trousers would become swathed in silk. Tiny threads, stronger than steel - trap, parachute and egg case in one, produced by an animal not always associated with beauty. During my first month in Australia I had parked under a gum tree - which was stil