Tiny hand

Linocut tiny hand with larger hand

Twenty five years ago I took a few photos of my firstborn’s hand on my hand. Since then I’ve made drawings from the least blurry pictures, and transferred one of those to a little piece of lino. Sketches and lino blocks go missing during house moves and home improvement projects.

Finally, after years of dithering, I have cut enough of this lino to make a test print. It might benefit from more little dots in the background and a different colour ink but that’s for another day.

Lino block with test print

Lincoln Imp

Photo credit: Peter James Samuel Cooper

The Lincoln Imp is a small devilish creature who was sent from the underworld to cause havoc. In theory, to put an end to this destruction, an angel turned the imp to stone. The imp has been watching from his position on an arch inside Lincoln cathedral for a few hundred years. Visitors spend a long time hunting for him so I won’t say which arch…

Last October I noticed some plans for a Lincoln Imp Trail. A design for a large impish creature was unveiled. Its facial features were too small and it had an unfortunately positioned leg which was regarded as phallic by some observers.

I emailed the imp makers to suggest they looked closer at the real imp’s face. Maybe they could reconsider their design? They thanked me for my feedback but claimed their imps were not based on any specific imp(!) It must be a coincidence that their imp has been designed to perch with hands resting on one leg. Sitting in that position fits a character who peeks out from an arch of greenery, artistic license would allow some movement.

Recently the full size imps have appeared in the city. The tale of the hilarious phallic statues has reached the national press. Not all publicity is good – but maybe a shameful council that plans to close Lincoln’s Usher Gallery will realise that people really do need to be more visually literate.

A Wild in Art spokesperson said: “The mischievous response on social media is in the spirit of the imp and shows that people are looking forward to this event”.

Lincoln Imp, carved limestone.

“Once decorated the sculptures, which are based on Lincoln’s iconic imp will make a vibrant, colourful and fun art trail celebrating the city.”

Now they’re saying it’s based on a specific imp, will they admit it lacks any mischievous spirit? It’s dispiriting to think that sculpting skills were so much livelier in previous centuries. My own stonemason ancestors must be whirling in their tombs.

Lemon Meringue Pie

Not actually a pie, there’s no pastry.

I mixed a packet of lemon pie filling (mostly potato flour, cornflour etc) with half a pint of water but left out the egg yolk that the instructions suggested.

There was a jar of water left over from a can of chickpeas. I whisked the water with half a teaspoon of cream of tartar. I added caster sugar and continued to whisk.

The meringue spread nicely over the cooled lemon pie. Should it be baked or grilled? Various recipes suggested various methods and temperatures. Into the oven for a while. As there had been too much meringue I’d put spoonfuls of the mixture onto some baking parchment.

These were baked for a shorter time. They looked nice but were still wet inside… A minute of microwaving improved the texture.

The meringue on top of the pie was also watery inside. Grilling it didn’t help. Neither did microwaving, it exploded! I gathered the broken pieces and microwaved them. Lemon pie with chickpea meringue garnish?

Democracy

Democracy – a system of government in which the sovereign power is vested in the people as a whole exercising power directly or by elected officials.

Democracy should mean power to the people, but somehow we have all chosen to give power to the wrong people. We are governed by a small group of people who are out of touch with our distant problems.
Our elected members have done very little to improve life in Pembrokeshire. They have consistently voted in line with their party policy rather than for the best interests of their constituents. Their actions have caused further cuts to our health board and they have helped to slowly eradicate any local educational opportunities.

Previously prorogued parliaments have been followed by military rule after beheading the monarch – the green party might disapprove of royalty but we’re not savages.

We need to save our environment, which is more important than any petty political shenanigans. I’m sorry to be the bearer of bad news but Green Party policy is to look for a positive solution and for everyone to take practical action. Everyone has a skill to offer. Pembrokeshire has a great many worthy projects that are run by volunteers, when they should be properly funded.

There will be distractions such as tribal concerns or the media’s divide and rule tactics, it’s too late to bother with those. You can disagree with someone’s outlook but still achieve some level of common ground.

Do we need to be governed by impractical people that we would never seek advice from? No.

Let our elders and betters shut themselves down. Ideally parliament in its current form would never resume and we could save a vast amount of money and resources.