What I learnt this week: March 27th 2014


  • Our garage collects far more rubbish than we thought.  We’re clearing it out this week.  Something of a biennial event (I had to look that up – every two years) that isn’t to make room for our cars, but to make room for more inevitable clutter that will worm its way there in the forthcoming months.  It seems unwanted items in our household don’t go straight to the tip, they go first to the garage which acts as a kind of deportation centre, until eventual expulsion.  I think it’s because we hate to throw things away, so instead we banish them to the garage.  By the time they’ve spent two years there, they’re so rotten/damp/dirty they have to be thrown.  So, back to the learning – a 4 yard skip is not big enough to hold two years worth of Freeman junk.
  • In 1939 Adolf Hitler was nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize! He was nominated by a member of the Swedish parliament, and it wasn’t intended to be taken seriously – it was more of a satiric criticism of the current political debate in Sweden. Unsurprisingly, the nomination was swiftly withdrawn. On the same theme, Winston Churchill, though nominated for the Peace Prize in 1953, didn’t win it, but was awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature ‘for his mastery of historical and biographical description as well as for brilliant oratory in defending exalted human values’.
  • You can stay in the same motorhome used by Jenson Button for £8,000 – a night! I found this when researching motorhomes used by formula one drivers for the book I’m writing.  It’s all very luxurious, but seems one heck of a lot for a night in a caravan.  Mind you, if Jenson was included in the package, I’d be scrambling the money together…
  • There is only meaning for bare, but two meanings for bear.  This is one of those words that gets me in a muddle.  I’m always writing she couldn’t bear the thought, then wondering which it should be, the lack of clothes bare, or the furry animal bear.  What a crazy language – it’s no wonder I get confused. Well now I know, bear is both a noun (the furry animal) and a verb (carry, support, tolerate).  So, she couldn’t bear the thought of her lovely cuddly bear being bare.  Umm…



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