Sorry sorry pak. Stuck in traffic.


There was plenty of opportunity to observe Colonel Harlan Sanders in both face and figur(ine) in Indonesia. He looks like he’s dropped a lot of weight. Maybe 10 or 15 kilos! He could have diabetes and be looking after himself, or could have just sworn off the product. Or it could be a purely local phenomenon in a land not noted for its fatties. Worthy of further investigation.


I’ve been calling Joop, Jope. Profuse apologies.


1) A significant omission in my description of the Merry Cemetery is that the texts on the headmarkers are in the first person: ‘I loved my car so much …’, ‘I couldn’t choose between two men …’, ‘We were hunting in the forest when …’, and , of course, ‘Here I lie …’. You will agree that this makes all the difference.

2) Re ‘Language’. On the way home in the plane I read in ‘The Guardian’ that the issue of whether or not to teach grammar to second language learners has finally been resolved (by the customary new meta analysis of research). You need to. And also chocolate cures cancer. This is one of these issues like genes or heredity, free market versus regulation, god or the void that just bleeds dispute which is both trite and tedious. I found the following small contribution in Diego Marani’s New Finnish Grammar. ‘The rule always succeeds the word; this is the great weakness of all grammar. The rule is not order, it is just a description of some form of disorder. … A language’s prescriptive baggage comes into being less to facilitate its comprehension, that to prevent foreigners’ access to it.’

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