Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Streets of San Francisco

sf chase

Today is the late Steve McQueen's 80th birthday. Hard to believe he was only 50 when he skipped out to the Great Macho Dude Ranch in the Sky. It's also 42 years since the release of Bullitt, possibly the best cinematic car chase of all time. It never gets old and had quite an effect on me at the time; for awhile I started double de-clutching when shifting UP. This muscular technique sounds great in a muscle car with a high displacement engine but slightly silly in a 425cc, 2 cylinder, Citroen 2CV. And back in the 80s when I was a resident of San Francisco I failed quite miserably in an attempt to make my Pontiac Firebird jump down Chestnut Street (to be fair, I was probably 200 horsepower short of Mr McQueen's tuned and modified 6.4L fastback Mustang GT. I did however get pulled over by a policeman who gave me a lecture (fortunately no ticket) for chirping my tires...

Embedding codes for this YouTube clip are not published so to view click here.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Wearing of the Green

Racing Green

I was looking for a photo of something green to celebrate the day and I found this. Irish Racing Green? Well not exactly but it'll do. Happy St. Patrick's Day, everybody! And drive safely, too.

My thanks to either Chuck Goolsbee or Olivia Morrow for the photo and my apologies to both for not remembering who took it in the first place.

Thursday, March 04, 2010

Debts of Honour

mf Michael Mackintosh Foot, 23 July 1913 – 3 March 2010.

I was very saddened to read of the death of one of my political heroes, Michael Foot, yesterday, at the grand old age of 96. He was an old style, Old Labour, politician of the highest integrity and a terrific intellectual. A was also a fantastic orator with great depth and unashamed campaigner for peace. He was not, unfortunately, a master of image management or snappy soundbites and was thus an easy target for the right wing media. A case in point was his choice of coat for a memorial service at the Cenotaph in 1981. Shame on them for their superficiality. Neither was he a miracle worker and when leader of Britain's polarised and fragmented Labour party in the early 80s, suffered a humiliating defeat. But he should be remembered as an inspirational politician of principal and courage. Requiescat in pace.