Archive for the ‘obituaries’ Tag

Ironside, RIP   Leave a comment

Over the last 25 years, I’ve been incredibly lucky to work for — often with — a couple of dozen eminent scientists, able to honestly call most of them friends.  During my short tenure at Cambridge, I never met Stephen Hawking (unsurprisingly), but one of my bosses there who is now what passes for ‘head of research’ at the University told me a couple of amusing stories about him while we were out for a long jog in the fens.

Yesterday was busy at work and it slipped my mind that he finally slipped the coil.  I headed home and, as I passed University College, it took a moment to realise why the College banner was at half mast.

Loads has been in print these past 36 hours about his Pop Culture importance like his appearances on episodes of The Simpsons and Big Bang Theory (among other tele programmes).  People forget about his brief tenure in the early 70’s replacing Raymond Burr while he was in prison for smuggling heroin across the border at Tijuana:


Posted March 15, 2018 by Drunken Bunny in Obits

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Mill Hill East to Highbury & Islington, Northern Line and Overground, TfL Run Project   1 comment


Saturday morning brought a desire to do some damage to the remaining bits of the TfL Run Project.  The Northern Line and the Overground have lingered long in this effort and I left the house before sunrise on a bus to Mill Hill Broadway to start.



From beneath the bleak M1 Motorway flyover where the bus terminated, I ran.



Several things made me laugh about this:



Shortly, Mill Hill East emerged and the first segment of the day began.


Mill Hill East


This railway bridge is fairly impressive:



Finchley Central, East Finchley, and Highgate Stations soaked in the sunrise:


Finchley Central

East Finchley



and, a second, more impressive bridge presented itself:



Archway was a bit hard to find (I stood with an advert display between me and the station looking everywhere except where it sits).  Tufnell Park was a little more obvious:



Tufnell Park


I wasn’t sure this place actually existed, but there it was (and is): the Ladies & Gents Bar house in a former public toilet (definitely on the short list, now):



Kentish Town and Camden Town were the last of the Northern Line for the day:


Kentish Town

Camden Town




From there, I looped back up to Gospel Oak to fill in a little of the Overground:



On the way to Gospel Oak, this old public bath, pool, and sauna looked awesome in the early-morning, mid-winter light:



Gospel Oak


Kentish Town West, Camden Road, and Caledonian Road & Barnesbury stood between me and the finish:


Kentish Town West

Camden Road

Caledonian Road & Barnsbury


The Henry Hicks memorial outside the prison was perplexing:



Finally, I made it to Highbury and Islington Station for the ride home.


Highbury & Islington


Watched over by the ghost of Henry Hicks on the walls of the station:



The rest can be done in as few as 2 or 3 runs, now:


Posted February 21, 2018 by Drunken Bunny in Running

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Old Boots to the Bin   Leave a comment


I run heal-to-toe from the outside, in.  It is more apparent when I have more rigid soles, like on this pair of Brooks GTS 16 running shoes first worn on New Year’s Day 2017.  Matched with another pair, the four shoes have run more than 2300 miles altogether and been worn almost daily for, easily, another 1200 or so.



The new ones that replaced these have much softer soles such that I can feel much finer corrugations in the running surfaces and, as one would barefoot, I am running much more on the balls of my feet in them.  Moderate workouts have been, as a result of the change in architecture in the shoes and mechanics of the running effort, exhausting.  Whole families of small muscles — especially in my feet and lower legs — are paying dearly for the inactivity they have enjoyed whilst others helped my frame balance on the narrow pieces of un-eroded sole over the last several months.

They have been loyal companions but I can read through the bottoms of the Brooks.  Bye-bye.




Posted February 19, 2018 by Drunken Bunny in Running

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Doug Stanhope’s Celebrity Death Pool picks 2018   Leave a comment

It’s Celebrity Death Pool Time!  Read about it, here … there are still Funeral Homes to join.

Top Ten DSCDP 2018 Picks as of 30 Jan 2018

John McCain 820
Leah Bracknell 807
George H.W. Bush 770
Linda Nolan 513
Artie Lange 484
Bill Cosby 445
Valerie Harper 441
Jimmy Carter 431
Stan Lee 412
Prince Philip 412

My Picks:


Dan Quayle: who is also a spite pick, and VP for Bush Senior in the “Top Picks,” above


Don McLean: also a “reasonable expectation” pick … saw him in Liverpool a few years ago then again on telly last year, went from looking “a bit rough” to “at Death’s door” in that time.


Jerry Brown: picked Jello Biafra (below) and the Governor popped into my head … he’s come for your uncool niece.


John Lewis: personal hero and formerly my Congressman, but he can’t last forever


Philip Glass: also a spite pick


Piers Morgan: also a spite pick


Sharon Osbourne: go to sleep, Sharon, I’ve got Ozzy in my alternates list


Winnie Mandela


Lady Gaga: also a spite pick


RuPaul: my first trip to the Cove after a cooking shift in Atlanta, RuPaul was dancing on the bar straddling my cocktail for about 10 minutes.  Bartender came over afterwards and asked how I found my drink; “fine, but I prefer it without a straw.”  We laughed and laughed – drugs were involved.



Spite Picks (not already noted):

Chris Christie

Donald Trump


Reasonable Expectation (old or looking ill, see also Don McLean, above):

Bob Dylan



Brian Wilson


Jello Biafra (see above or look here)


Mick Jagger

(note, those four all would get the Musician Bonus … as would Gaga, Glass, and McLean)



Jimmy Carter (who is a not-too-distant relative of mine … really Jimmy Carter, not Dan Aykroyd; see also in the Top Ten Picks, above)


Kevin Spacey


Mel Brooks



Robert Mugabe


Posted January 31, 2018 by Drunken Bunny in Made Me Laugh, Obits

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Weekend Runs 28-29 October 2017   2 comments


The weekend runs were both early morning affairs this week. Saturday, I left before dawn for an 11.4 mile trip to Shepherd’s Bush to pick up some items at the butcher and the fish stalls in the market. While the butcher opens at 7, the market officially opens at 9 and I didn’t want to wait around till then.

I was listening to some mp3 files from NPR and learned that Robert Blakely died. No, the name meant nothing to me, either, until the announcer explained that he designed the Fallout Shelter signs that most Americans grew up with (at least the ones 15 years either side of my age). There were huge Shelters everywhere. In Griffin, Georgia there was a massive one with the marked entrance by the old (former) library adjacent to what was then the High School; me and some track mates found another way in by the cemetery on the other side of the campus and used it as a place to drink and smoke pot. In Athens, Georgia, I went on a tour of the one under the north quads; it must have been suitable for 5000 souls. Food, mechanical ventilation, and electrical gizmos complemented the submarine-style sleeping quarters. Who would’ve thought those memories would seem so current just one President ago?




The time change occurred and Sunday I didn’t need a torch when I left the house at 6 am for the 23.3 miler to Morden. It was fairly uneventful and reasonably pleasant — there was even a steady wind at my back more-or-less parallel to my course. Passing through Kingston-upon-Thames early enough that other runners were only starting out, I spotted this domino effect public installation involving phone boxes (below). In a related side note, on the ride home I noticed that the Vanguard building near Perivale (which has had a fighter jet mounted on the roof for as long as we’ve been here) now has a TARDIS on top.




I managed to stop in for a lovely Black Dragon Cider at the Nonsuch Inn (write-up here) as I made the final turn toward Morden Station. Passing the George, I figured it was worth a punt, too. “Is the bar open?” I asked at the bar.

“Yes, of course.”
“Excellent. I’ll have a pint of Doom Bar.”
“Oh. We don’t sell alcohol until 11.”
“Then, the bar is NOT open?”
“Yes, but not for alcohol.”
“Thanks, but that is not a bar.”



I caught the Northern Line tube soon after, changing to the Charing Cross branch at Kennington then transferring to the Central Line at Tottenham Court Road Station. This was the biggest coincidence of the weekend for me:  Jackie had never seen American Werewolf In London so we watched it the night before as part of the Halloweekend rituals.  This station features in some of the first night of the full moon gore and it was kind of a treat to be in there early enough on a Sunday that it was almost deserted save for a busker playing some Bach on guitar.


Fuck around, more like


Posted October 30, 2017 by Drunken Bunny in Obits, Running

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Red Lion, Southall, London   1 comment

Pub #1916 (and the 200th of this calendar year):

Online, I saw that the Red Lion was open from 10 am daily.  Arriving at 2:30, the hours posted in the window showed opening times from 3 pm.  Fortunately, they were hosting a funeral and not treating it as a private function so I doffed my cap, slid past the mourners with their plates of fantastic looking Caribbean food, and ordered a Guinness to fortify my legs for the run back to Ruislip afterwards.



The sound was down on the tele and the cricket (a test match from Lords) had more ball tracking lines after each bowl than could possibly be necessary.

I tried not to interfere with the Friends and Family so I didn’t get a lot of images of the interior (which is a lot nicer and more expansive than I thought it would be).  Had I been less courteous, there was a photo to be had of this one young man standing, shoulders sagging, eyes closed, fingers occasionally flexing, and facing the front windows.  Poignant, and I’m glad I had the restraint to only capture it in memory.  Rest in peace, whoever you might have been.




Posted September 9, 2017 by Drunken Bunny in Obits, Pubs

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Fill a 6-foot-deep hole with 2 parts gin, 1 part lemon juice, 1 part simple syrup…   1 comment

At cocktail bars, I’m ridiculed by bartenders when I order something old-style like a Manhattan or a Side-Car.  But, going by the evidence in the Ruislip Cemetery, the Tom Collins is quite literally dead.  R.I.P.


Posted August 18, 2017 by Drunken Bunny in Booze, Obits, Recipes

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