Archive for February, 2011


Posted: 20/02/2011 by C. Matt Hewes in About Writing
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Recently, I’ve started researching the History of Scotland, more in particular the Clans. All to aid me in a new project I’m working on. What I’ve found out sofar is, that, for example, my partner is a far descendant of one of the septs that fought alongside William (Braveheart) Wallace, as members of the Lamont clan. Better watch myself… wouldn’t want to lose me head 😎

It’s really dizzifying (did I just make up a word?):

When you start digging into the Clans’ History, you soon start learning how rich but at the same time violent Scots’ History really is. Where one would think the Clans have something unmistakingly Scottish about them but nothing is more true; most of the notorious Clans were of French descent, or dwelled down on Scottish grounds for Denmark (Picts), Germany (Saxons) and even the Norwegian (Vikings) are well represented in their History. Surprisingly, even the clog wearing Dutch are represented in Scotland’s history (though I doubt they’d be wearing clogs in the Highlands…), and it is said that even H.M. the Queen finds her roots in one of the older Clans. However, most of the Clans find their ancestry in Ireland (Celts). The all well-known word ‘Clan’ comes from the Gaelic, or more specific, Irish Gaelic ‘Clann, a Chlann, Clainne’, meaning as much as ‘children, offspring’. I really need to start learning Gaelic, methinks…

Don’t get me wrong, I’m not trying to reinvent the wheel here, I’m just completely blown over by the grandeur of their history and I really need to get to the depths of it if I am to remotely understand all of it. I do want my project to be anywhere believable…

Just thought I’d share my admiration for this ten thousand year old Culture…


Also found on the same thread as previous post; I thought it’d be nice keeping the two together. Again, this has been around the Net repeatedly, so I don’t know who holds the copyright. It isn’t me…

NOTE: Read the previous post first; this one is the response to it..


To the citizens of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland:

We welcome your concern about our electoral process. It must be exciting for you to see a real Republic in action, even if from a distance. As always we’re amused by your quaint belief that you’re actually a world power. The sun never sets on the British Empire! Right-o chum!

However, we regretfully have to decline your offer for intervention. On the other hand, it would be amusing to see you try to enforce your new policy (for the 96.3% of you that seem to have forgotten that you have little to no real power). After much deliberation, we have decided to continue our tradition as the longest running democratic republic. It seems that switching to a monarchy is in fact considered a “backwards step” by the majority of the world.

To help you rise from your current anachronistic status, we have compiled a series of helpful suggestions that we hope you adopt:

1. Realize that language is an organic structure, and that you aren’t always correct in your pronunciation or spelling.

Let’s use your “aluminium” example. Sir Humphrey Davy (an Englishman) invented the name “aluminum” (note spelling) for the metal. However, in common usage the name evolved into “aluminium” to match the naming convention of other elements. In 1925 the United States decided to switch back to the original spelling and pronunciation of the word, at which point we dominated the aluminum industry.

We’d also like to point out that the process of actually producing aluminum was developed by an American and a Frenchman (not an Englishman).

However, we’d like to thank you for the Oxford English Dictionary. It’s an interesting collection, considering that over 10,000 of the words in the original edition were submitted by a crazy American civil-war veteran called Dr. William Charles Minor.

2. Learn to distinguish the American and Canadian accents, and then we’ll talk about the English and Australian accent issue.

3. Review your basic arithmetic. (Hint: 100 – 98.85 = 1.15 and 100 – 97.85 = 2.15)

4. If you want English actors as good guys, then make your own movies. Don’t rely on us for your modern popular culture. We liked “Lock, Stock, and Two Smoking Barrels”, “Trainspotting”, and “The Full Monty”.

We’ve also heard good things about this “Billy Elliot”. But one good movie a year doesn’t exactly make a cultural powerhouse. However, you’re doing pretty well with music, so keep up the good work on that front.

5. It’s inefficient to have a national anthem that changes its title whenever your monarch dies.

Let’s not forget that your national anthem has an extremely boring tune. We suggest switching to that Rule Brittania ditty, it’s toetapping. Or maybe Elton John could adapt “Candle In The Wind” again for you guys.

6. Improve at your national sport. Football? Soccer?

This just in: United States gets fourth place in men’s soccer at the 2000 Summer Olympics. United Kingdom? Not even close. By the way, impressive showing at Euro 2000. You almost managed to get through the tournament without having your fans start an international incident.

7. Learn how to cook. England has some top notch candy.

Salt ‘n’ Vinegar chips are quite yummy. However, there’s a reason why the best food in your country is Indian or Chinese. Your contributions to the culinary arts are soggy beans, warm beer, and spotted dick. Perhaps when you finally realize the French aren’t the spawn of satan they’ll teach you how to cook.

8. You’re doing a terrible job at understanding cars. The obvious error is that you drive on the wrong side of the road.

A second problem is pricing: It’s cheaper to buy a car in Belgium and ship it to England than to buy a car in England. On the other hand, we like Jaguars and Aston Martins. That’s why we bought the companies.

9. We’ll tell you who killed JFK when you apologize for “Teletubbies”.

Thank you for your time. Yu can now return to watching bad Australian soap operas.

P.S. — Regarding WW2: You’re Welcome.