Was that a groan or did I hear the Dingle Bagpipes?

CURIOUS CURIOSITIES OR A COLLECTION OF THE QUAINT AND QUIRKY ...

1: In Iceland there's a Penis Museum with 195 exhibits. I suppose they must have somewhere to go on cold days. Exhibits range from the miniscule penis of the hamster to the majestic weapon of the whale. The museum's owner is said to be looking for a human specimen to add to his collection. I don't think the Penis Museum will tempt me to go to Iceland anymore than the songs of Björk or the tales of Brunhilda. My sister recently went there for a 4 day trip - she didn't visit the said museum by the way - but she told me that 90% of Icelanders - DNA tested - are closely related to the Irish and are not the Teutons we are led by Germanic legend to believe. OK, maybe I was a bit hard on Björk - she's isn't all that bad!

2: 'There were giants in the Earth in those days.' And it seems that they may have brushed their teeth. Some researchers claim that Neanderthals were wiped out by Cro-Magnon (ie. us). Were they killed for their toothbrushes? Was it Earth's first case of 'dentocide'?
Cheetah, Tarzan's chimpanzee, is 74.
Robot Zeno is 1. His Albert Einstein head is optional.
Alex the African-Grey has died. He had a 100 word vocabulary.

CROPHERB CRUNCHBRACKEN'S BOOK LIST:

The % score is merely Cropherb Crunchbracken's personal reading satisfaction guide. Where there's no % shown it simply means he's currently reading the book. The books are listed in the order he's reading them. During 2007 he hopes to read at least 52 books (stop press: on target for 45). High scorers in the list will be kept on the shelf for re-reading in 2008.

Cropherb's Current Top 12:
1.THE GRAPES OF WRATH by John Steinbeck
2.HER PRIVATES WE by Frederic Manning
3.IN THE HEART OF THE COUNTRY by J M Coetzee
4.CRY FREEDOM by John Briley
4.A CLOCKWORK ORANGE by Anthony Burgess
6.INVISIBLE MAN by Ralph Ellison
7.NINE SUITCASES by Bela Zsolt
8.THE DEATH OF IVAN ILYICH by Leo Tolstoy
9.TO KILL A MOCKINGBIRD by Harper Lee
9.GERMINAL by Emil Zola
11. THE GREAT GATSBY by F Scott Fitzgerald
11. A FAREWELL TO ARMS by Ernest Hemingway


CATCH-22 Joseph Heller
It was love at first sight. The first time Yossarian saw the chaplain he fell madly in love with him ...82%

THE BELL JAR Sylvia Plath
It was a queer, sultry summer, the summer they electrocuted the Rosenbergs, and I didn't know what I was doing in New York ...79%

SLAUGHTERHOUSE FIVE Kurt Vonnegut
All this happened, more or less. The war parts, anyway, are pretty much true. One guy I knew really was shot in Dresden for taking a teapot that wasn't his ...75%

THE GOOD SOLDIER SVEJK Jaroslav Hasek
'And so they've killed our Ferdinand,' said the charwoman to Mr Svejk, who had left military service years before, after having been finally certified by an army medical board as an imbecile, and now lived by selling dogs - ugly, mongrel monstrosities whose pedigrees he forged ...70%

LIFE WITH A STAR Jiri Weil
'Ruzena,' I said,'at this moment people are sitting down to well-set tables. There are flowers in vases. Plates clink, and steam rises slowly from bowls. People begin to eat. They cut their meat with their knives and pick it up with their forks ...87%

HER PRIVATES WE Frederic Manning
The darkness was increasing rapidly, as the whole sky had clouded, and threatened thunder. There was still some desultory shelling ...91%

THE PIANIST Wladyslaw Szpilman
I began my wartime career as a pianist in the Cafe´ Nowoczesna, which was in Nowolipki Street in the very heart of the Warsaw ghetto ...80%

IN COLD BLOOD Truman Capote
The village of Holcomb stands on the high wheat plains of western Kansas, a lonesome area that other Kansans call 'out there'...83%

GERMINAL Emile Zola
Out on the open plain, on a starless, ink-dark night, a lone man was following the highway from Marchiennes to Montsou, ten kilometres of paved road that cut directly across the fields of beet ...85%

A FAREWELL TO ARMS Ernest Hemingway
In the late summer of that year we lived in a house in a village that looked across the river and the plain to the mountains. In the bed of the river there were pebbles and boulders...84%

TO KILL A MOCKINGBIRD by Harper Lee
When he was nearly thirteen my brother Jem got his arm badly broken at the elbow...85%

IN THE HEART OF THE COUNTRY by J M Coetzee
Today my father brought home his new bride. They came clip-clop across the flats in a dog-cart drawn by a horse with an ostrich-plume waving on its forehead, dusty after the long haul...90%

NINE SUITCASES by Bela Zsolt
So, here I am, lying on my mattress in the middle of the synagogue at the foot of the Ark of the Covenant. The light that consultant Nemeti inked hospital-blue the day before yesterday flickers...87%

THE GRAPES OF WRATH by John Steinbeck
To the red country and part of the gray country of Oklahoma, the last rains came gently, and they did not cut the scarred earth...95%

CRY FREEDOM by John Briley
The day began before sunrise. It always did. If you had a job in Cape Town, the baas expected you there by seven or eight. No excuses. Just be there...89%

THE CATCHER IN THE RYE by J D Salinger
If you really want to hear about it, the first thing you'll probably want to know is where I was born...77%

THE RUM DIARY by Hunter S Thompson
My apartment in New York was on Perry Street, a five minute walk from the White Horse...79%

THE GREAT GATSBY by F Scott Fitzgerald
In my younger and more vulnerable years my father gave me some advice that I've been turning over in my mind ever since...84%

EAST OF EDEN by John Steinbeck
The Salinas Valley is in Northern California. It is a long narrow swale between two ranges of mountains, and the Salinas River winds and twists up the center...80%

ONE FLEW OVER THE CUCKOO'S NEST by Ken Kesey
They're out there. Black boys in white suits up before me to commit sex acts in the hall and get it mopped up before I can catch them...82%

YOUTH by J M Coetzee
He lives in a one-room flat near Mowbray railway station, for which he pays eleven guineas a month...72%

INVISIBLE MAN by Ralph Ellison
I am an invisible man. No, I am not a spook like those who haunted Edgar Allan Poe; nor am I one of your Hollywood-movie ectoplasms. I am a man of substance, of flesh and bone...88%

A CLOCKWORK ORANGE by Anthony Burgess
"What's it going to be then, eh?"...89%

HEART OF DARKNESS by Joseph Conrad
The Nellie, a cruising yawl, swung to her anchor without a flutter of sails, and was at rest...70%

ULYSSES by James Joyce
Stately, plump Buck Mulligan came from the stairhead, bearing a bowl of lather on which a mirror and a razor lay...

THE OUTSIDER by Albert Camus
Mother died today. Or maybe yesterday, I don't know...81%

THE DEATH OF IVAN ILYICH by Leo Tolstoy
In the large Law Court building, during an adjournment of the Melvinsky trial, the members of the bench and the Public Prosecutor had come together in the office of Ivan Yegorovich Shebek...86%

THREE CAME HOME by Agnes Keith
We had always wanted a son. On our honeymoon we had fed coppers to the golden Buddhas in the temples of fecundity...72%

THE VIRGIN SUICIDES by Jeffrey Eugenidies
On the morning the last Lisbon daughter took her turn at suicide - it was Mary this time, and sleeping pills...80%

PERFUME by Patrick Süskind
In eighteenth-century France there lived a man who was one of the most gifted and abominable personages in an era that new no lack of gifted and abominable personages...

AT SWIM-TWO-BIRDS by Flann O'Brien
Having placed in my mouth sufficient bread for three minutes' chewing, I withdrew my powers of sensual perception and retired into the privacy of my mind...82%

THE ROAD by Cormac McCarthy
When he woke in the woods in the dark and the cold of the night he'd reach out and touch the child sleeping beside him...

THE MAN WITHOUT QUALITIES by Robert Musil
A barometric low hung over the Atlantic. It moved eastward toward a high-pressure area over Russia...

A FRIEND OF KAFKA AND OTHER STORIES by Isaac Bashevis Singer
I had heard about Franz Kafka years before I read any of his books from his friend Jacques Kohn, a former actor in the Yiddish theatre...

IN GOD'S NAME by David Yallop (N/F)
The Luciani family lived in the small mountain village of Canale d'Agordo* nearly 1,000 metres above sea level and approximately 120 kilometres north of Venice...80%

MEN AGAINST DEATH by Paul de Kruif (N/F)
I don't want to die. There are too many birds left whose songs I don't know...83%

THE ITALIANS by Luigi Barzini
Italians are pleased and perplexed...(N/F)

FACTOTUM by Charles Bukowski
I arrived in New Orleans in the rain at 5 o'clock in the morning...

...................................................................

About me:
I am a Welshman. I come from Snowdonia. That's a wet and windy, barren and bleak, mountainous region in North Wales. In years gone by - we roofed the world. In North Wales we grow slate. It grows like grass. There's heaps of it just lying around all over the mountains. Help yourself! Tell them, yes them - the ghosts of my ancestors, those who prowl the black lakes and the cloud scudding skies, that I Lucky Llareggub, the real Prince of Wales, did send you.

In 2005 I went to James Joyce's Martello Tower in Dublin and in 2006 to the cafe´ cum cake shop he frequented when he lived in Trieste.
Recently I went to Bad Ischl and sat at the spot on a small hill where Brahms wrote his famous lullaby and also recently I strolled along the Northern Adriatic cliffs where the poet Rilke liked to stand. I've also been to Dylan Thomas's Boat House at Laugharne and R S Thomas's church at Aberdaron, both lovely locations. Oh yes, I've been to Ezra Pound's grave which is in Venice - there was a lizard sunbathing on it. Stravinsky and Brodsky are in the same graveyard. Last summer, 2006, I paid my respects at the grave of Benjamin Britten when I was exploring the Norfolk Coastal Path.

Not being of a scientific bent, yes I'm that awkward kid in the chemistry class whose test-tube experiments always ended in disaster, therefore I haven't jazzed-up my page.

More things about me:

I can't sing.
I can't juggle.
I can dance badly.
I can drink well.
Another thing:
I like to go jogging in the woods or in the park in the mornings.

Some favourite quotations:

There is more faith in honest doubt than in all the creeds - A Huxley
None but ourselves can free our mind - Bob Marley
Distilling is beautiful - Primo Levi
A person doesn't need to go to college to learn facts. He can get
them from books - Albert Einstein
The man who never alters his opinion is like standing water and
breeds reptiles of the mind - William Blake
All is lyricism, unmixed passion, the integrity of fire - W.B. Yeats
I think I can safely say that nobody understands quantum mechanics - Richard Feynman
Who kills the cat in Cairo coaxes cocks in Gaul - FW p509
You get your visions through whatever gate you're granted - Ken Kesey
The BBC have banned my poetry. The ... smut-hounds thought I was writing a copulatory anthem - Dylan Thomas

Well, that's enough about me. Peace be with you.

A word of explanation about my name.-
It's a tribute to Dylan Thomas - Llareggub is the town
in the play for voices - Under Milk Wood.
The Cropherb Crunchbracken reference is a nod to James Joyce
and comes from Finnegans Wake.
Bloomsday is celebrated worldwide on 16th June.








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Lucky Llareggub - no more cannibals in our village, we ate the last one yesterday..

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