a thing of beauty…

Dear diablog,

Engine Room much despises gardeners. Personally I really enjoy some aspects of the pastime, the main one being planting something and watching it burgeon in season.

As Glynsky Towers is a little ‘different’, old (like me), and varied in aspect and design I have tried to populate the garden  with a generous sprinkling of ‘specialist’ type plants and have 3 favourites which I impatiently wait to see flower.

Of these, the most unusual is Carpenteria from California – and this year its really going for it!




Yes, it is horribly untidy but, wow, saucer size flowers and all, but against the orange/red climbing rose –  Eeeehagh.

Love it.

Yours, diablog, in bloom


quite outstanding…

Dear diablog,

I wonder if you have heard of the astounding work of an artist called Patrick Hughes?

I hadn’t and am grateful to the BBC for introducing his extraordinary techniques to G+P

This stuff is quite weird and takes some getting used to

but is unique and quite extraordinary.

Long live the creative spirit.

Yours, diablog, with an expanded culture


where the tulips come from…

Dear Diablog,

Despite being a committed Brexiter I have always been hopelessly in love with Europe so, a couple of weeks ago I took a 45 minute torture course – well, Easyjet from Luton – to a wonderfully attractive city


where I rented a suitable local method of transport for Mme and the pair we went with


and booked into an AirB+B par excellance.


After checking out the neighbours…..


Continue reading “where the tulips come from…”

the sky’s the limit…

Dear diablog,

Personally I have become very disillusioned with F1 racing and almost never watch it.

As a Williams fan (dating back to Alan Jones) I find it all a bit of a yawn with a preponderance of spoilt kids at the wheel and run by computers in the pits – usually housed in billion pound motor homes. Harking back to Jones for a moment, at the 1980 British GP (the clip at the end is 25 mins and only for the dedicated) I had ‘lost’ Mme and kids in the pits – easy and friendly in those days – at Brands, my second favourite after Spa. After ages of searching she was taking tea with Mrs Jones and the to be Sir Frank in the Williams pit. Without labouring the point we were all invited to the ‘post race party’ with all the other drivers. Memories, memories!

Back to the point, though not a Hamilton fan – Christina


who is sent this and I have to admit that he does come over fairly well.

Lucky bastard!!

Yours, diablog, on air


PS. read more if the 1980 GP interests you!

Continue reading “the sky’s the limit…”

the music goes around and around…

Dear diablog,

Just before Christmas I referred, in a post, to my Jukebox which drew the question from the Druid (good pun Glynsky – you well subtle) as to whether or not it was real. In addition, I recently mentioned ‘time at the glass’ by Carlo’s AMI.

I ‘spose that in this iPod world it seemed a reasonable thing to ask – but I was offended! Someone dared question the authenticity of my ‘Princess’.

Oddly, and for different reasons, I was ‘wandering’ around Youtube the other day and stumbled upon a certain ‘Mike’ who had an exact sister of mine for sale – a 1962 Rockola Princess.

As can be seen from the ‘tags’ I have assigned to this post, a 1962 Princess ticks a lot of boxes for me.

An iPod it is not – it has valves (neither oysters nor tyre) which no one under than 60 would understand (and most of those have no idea what they do or how), kinda lumpy electro-mechanicals (the sort that need vast lumps of aluminium to house them),  strange rotating wheels (a total of 4) which have to talk to each other but seem to get confused from time to time – actually, that is a disingenuous statement – and truly miles of wire wandering around to amp, preamp, bass, treble, hybrid (as in early stereo, not a Toyota), mono, ext and int (depending on where the speakers are) et al plus a wonderfully baffling coin acceptance/return system.

Everyone assumes that ‘shuffle’ exists everywhere, including in an electro-mechanical world. Sorry it can’t. Everything here is sequential and runs strictly from A to Z and then restarts at A – meaning that  whatever the order you have selected the music, it is not played in that order but always sequentially, which seriously confuses the grandchildren!!!

The one ‘wheel’  that fascinates me is the ‘play counter’ (approx 2.07 in the film) which is the yellow wheel identifying each record AND side played by a curved (to not take too much space) metal ‘rod’ which sticks out further each play. The idea is that when the machine is opened (usually weekly) by the record company rep he could identify which disc got the most/least plays and replace them with the latest to suit. And this information was crucial in deciding new releases/genres/taste changes and published ‘Top 20’s’.

Whatever, I am in love with my Princess and ‘Mike’ (who was actually trying to sell his thus devoting much footage to demonstrating its perfect condition) did us all a favour in recording the workings of a truly iconic machine – his musical taste, however, may be questioned by some!!

Yours, diablog, pressing all the right buttons


Never retire

Dear Reader,

The following is for our younger readers. And by younger I mean 15 to 30 years old. It is a piece of unsolicited advice. For once I know Glynsky and I agree on the matter. The matter being “retirement”.

Glynsky and I are extremely lucky. We can say: All of our life is hobbies. And we will never have to – or want to – retire.

Our main sources of income are from a hobby. There are ups and downs, naturally. And we both enjoy what we do, including those ups and downs. Granted, the ups are more fun.

We are self-employed. Thus, we do not have a boss. Instead we have clients. That is one of the most important issues. Neither to have a boss, nor idiotic colleagues or associates. We work with and for people we like. Nasty people never make it onto the client list.

Besides the hobby, that ended up being the main source of income, we both enjoy lots of other hobbies. Like the main hobby, those other hobbies give us pleasure and are sources of joy. Sometimes we have success, and sometimes we fail. Some of the hobbies occasionally turn out revenue or a profit or benefits other than money. Some don’t. All hobbies are bringing us in touch with nice people. And sometimes those nice people turn out to become clients. Others become suppliers or service providers to our main hobby, or recommend us to other potential clients. All this happens naturally. Because, you guessed it, nice people.

You might have noticed, neither of us draws a line between. what most people call, business life and private life. For us it is two sides of the same coin. By the way, it was like that for most people until the industrial revolution.

Now let’s take a look, what other people, aka the majority, do.

Continue reading “Never retire”