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The Other News From England

Week beginning 6 July 1998.

The Other News is made up as a single document, so that you can scroll your way through it.

List of subjects

Because a subject is listed does not necessarily mean there is an article. It has been listed because there probably is an article that week, and because the list is a good prompt for writing purposes.

Biwater Consumers crystal Palace Ecology Education Freemasons Lawyers LETSSwing Miscellaneous Music Planning Politics Science and Invention Unions and work Woodworking Small ads Stop Press

Last week`s edition.

Index of earlier issues.

Click here for Blackspot`s twenty articles on assorted subjects - mostly to do with transport, safety, engineering, etc

Gabriele Gad on alternative therapy.

For conditions see end of document.

curtailed edition

Pressure of summer holidays has caused this edition to be extremely reduced. This has happened because of the necessity to try to get the most out of life, and whilst the weather is good and there are a few gigs about these things are taking preference.

I can recommend it.


I have moved all the items that don`t change significantly to the end of the document. They do still exist.

If you haven`t looked at the other News From England before, read this in case it may save you some time.

The Other News has grown somewhat over the past months, and Josephine is gradually building a subject index for us. When it is completed, you will be able to log straight into the current edition and then look for the subjects that interest you in the subject index - these will often be in earlier editions. We are hoping this will help you find articles in your particular area of interest more easily than at present.

The Other News consists of a selection of articles written when we have the occasional `write-in` - on whatever subjects find their way to the top of the mental pile that week. Whilst some of it is intended to be serious, quite a lot is just a bit of light reading (or heavy, if you are a certain type of person), and intended to keep you amused, and cause people to question things.

Most of the material here is written by the editor, but no single article necessarily reflects the views of the editor or anyone else who writes here. They only might, except inasfaras the heretofore mentioned article in the first part affects those items covered by the Hot Air (Elimination) Acts as referred to in earlier editions (schedule 14, a, c, d et al but including those items not mentioned under) where they may be so far applicable as to deem them to be of interest to parties whose financial and other circumstances are such that they might need to make use of them, but who will nevertheless be bound by the terms and conditions contained herein and heretofore mentioned under certain headings that shall be chosen as and when required either by law or otherwise to be used as reference..........etc.

Is that clear?

Various articles about lawyers in most editions.


CAMBERWELL POST OFFICE have exceded all expectations in their bid for the longest queue in the country, although I imagine they haven`t yet got there. I counted the people a couple of times this week, and on average there were 32 people to the queue.

In case the purpose of this is not quite clear to the average punter, I will suggest a possble explanation.

First of all, as far as I know the post office still belongs to us all. It has not yet been ransacked by the various vutltures who get in on most privatisations. Efficiency to those people is represented by a large profit - no other criterion being valid by comparison. Since it is a monopoly (hence it will be called a `utility`) they can run it as badly as they like and still the customers will keep on coming - they cannot go anywhere else - and the longer the queues within reason the more profitable the operation.

Thus, we can probably assume that our post office is incapable of serving us properly because the government still aim to flog it off cheap to the world of commerce, and the more the profit (regardless of service) the more attractive the world of commerce will find it.

There is nothing we can do about it - except to make it quite clear to the governemnt that (a) we don`t want to sell it, and (b) the service is lousy, the staff are being treated like battery hens, it no longer completely fulfills it`s functions, it is being run so badly that were it not a monopoly it would have to close down when in fact it has every chance of being a proper and useful service.

But I don`t suppose we will.



IF YOU PUT enough nitrogen in water it becomes permanently dead, with no method by which it can generate new life.

The reason I tell you this is that most fertilisers (perhaps all) contain large quantities of nitrates which, when thrown about on fields, make your plants grow like hell, and then the surplus is washed off by rain and finds it`s way into the water table, the river, the sea, the fish, and no doubt in due course into the food we eat - because the sea can only assimilate so much. The remainder may well go into `killing` the sea and killing everything else.

I should say that of course part of the nitrogen thrown on the fields is used by the plants as part of their structure, and the plant cannot exist without the right amount of nitrogen - but that is not the same as artificially made nitrates or nitrites or pure nitrogen, and it is not the same as throwing on too much.

I imagine it is not a good idea to consume any more than the minutest amount of nitrogen, and as long as people keep throwing the balance out by unnaturally collecting together nitrates and throwing them about like this, the amount of nitogen in the water that all species drink will gradually increase...........

Until, one day, there will be so much nitrogen in the water that nothing can live in or on it except algae. We will thereofore all be dead (and so will the algae in due course), until a few million years pass by, during which life will get itself back into balance, and some new species will appear to replace the ones that couldn`t survive current conditions (presumably including humans - don`t be so stupidly arrogant) - just like the dynosaurs.

What a delightful prospect.


Nothing this week.


Nothing this week. I think I`ll go camping and find something to write about.

Gabriele Gad on alternative therapy.

Lawyers and law.

Nothing this week, but in a copuple of weeks I`m going camping for a few days with some lawyers, so there might be a bit of fun when I get back.


I have taken to treating certain people as though they are a part of my local LETS, and doing things for them without bothering to make any charge in any currency. They, then, do things for me from time to time, and this all works out to the good on all sides. This week, I welded some huge iron gates and fixed a washing machine, and other weeks I have surveyed pianos, fixed furniture, done computer work, shared gigs, had my car fixed (major works), been massaged, prescribed homoeopathic remedies, had free meals, trips to the country, borrowed a welder.

Well, I`m sure you see the idea. I think it`s good, but it has been argued that there are people who never do anything but just ask for things. True, but I don`t have to do the things they ask, and anyway the only way for them to get to know the use of such an arrangement is to use it - they will then, presumably, begin offering things, or to do things, for people when they see someone needing something they can offer.

Maybe I`m just being an optimist - but of course I have a reputation for either being an optimist or a complete cynic. Take your pick.

LETSSwing and others.

Part of LETSSwing is doing a gig at Chelsea Arts Club this Sat the 11th July. Steve Barbe, Gabriele Gad and Hugh Harris are putting together a band for the club`s Summer Ball (using `the pool` of freelance players), and the club have specified that it will be called (oh dear) Sgt. Pepper`s Lonely Arts Club Band, thus obliging us to play a Beatles number, which is something none of us would normally dream of doing. The rest of the gig will be jazz, rock n roll, rhythm n blues, country, pop - all mixed together, and probably all sounding like jazz players playing other stuff.

I intend to enjoy it. We have even worked out a couple of gags.

Click here for sheet music.

If you are in a LETS somewhere and would like LETSSwing to play to you, please contact

LETSSwing and others here also do gigs for world currencies - a variety of types of music.


This article has not changed from last week.

Do you really like what you play, or is it more that you have been told what you like, and therefore you think you like it?

The reason I ask this is two-fold.

First of all, I have been asked to play a Beatles number in a forthcoming gig, when I have never really liked the Beatles - despite being told all through the sixties that I ought to like them. This doesn`t mean that I won`t play it. It might not even mean that I won`t enjoy it. But the important thing is that I should play it to the best of my ability because the business of playing music for a livng is about trying to be `professional`. So this awful song will get the best I can give it.

The other reason is more subtle. When I was a teenager music was about image rather than what it sounded like. That is not to say that I didn`t like that to which I listened, but more that I often didn`t listen to that which I liked because it didn`t have the `right image`. Neither would I be likely to attempt playing it, and even less for someone else, who would be told they had appalling taste.

You might think this a harmless enough quirk, but actually it stopped me hearing or playing most of the music I now enjoy - and when I finally submitted to my own inner pressures to play rock`n`roll, rock, classical, country and western and a wide range of kitsch pop I was quite badly disarmed because I started off not knowing how to go about it instead of just taking it in my stride as another style not a great deal different to those which I had already tried. I had to listen carefully to recodings of music I had for years pretended not to like, and carefully analyse the rhythms and structure (rock`n`roll is surprisingly subtle if you listen carefully) before I was able to play them.

The best thing to do, I would say, is to follow your nose and play what you like as well as what they like - and do both with the same conviction and enthusiasm.

Click here for sheet music.


This article hasn`t changed during the week.

The government are considering plans to allow developers to develop along the sides of canals in exchange for managing that part of the canal along which they build - both housing and offices.

This, from your point of view, I suspect, means having to pay for access to your publicly-owned land, and possibly finding that in places there is no longer a towpath. Perhaps you will also find you cannot any longer moor your boat there.

Wonderful what free enterprise can do for people.

Unions and work

This article hasn`t changed during the week.

I am about to submit my case to the industrial tribunal claiming constructive dismissal.

Constructive dismissal is what happens when your employer makes your job so impossible to do or so uncomfortable that you are forced to leave.

More later.

Long term articles

(These are articles that either don`t change at all or as good as don`t change from one week to the next).


This item has not changed this week.

If you want to know about Biwater, visit the following site:

And here are a couple more sites of interest in this field:

Barefoot Boogie and Others.

(no change to this article)

Barefoot Boogie are at The International Students` House next to Great Portland St. Tube on the corner of Great Portland St. and Marylebone Road London UK on the following dates at 8.15 to 11.15 pm.

June 12, 19, 26, July 17, 24, 31, August 14, 21, September 11, 18, 25, October 2, 9 23, November 13, 20, December 4, 11, 18. Alcohol- and smoke-free disco playing a wide range of music inc. classical! Biodanza says `vibrant Latin/African Rhythms; ambient, trance, classical and rock...... in London every Wednesday 7.30-9.30 No 7 Wakefield St WC1 (5 minutes Russell Square tube 9 pounds or 6 pounds, students half price, advance and block booking discounts` phone enquiries (0044 for UK from most other countries) 0181 295 1588`

Another - a bit vague - hand-written on a postcard: `Mary`s Wednesday Biodanza class continues at St Lukes Church Hillmartin Rd N7 - Caledonian Rd tube.

Bonnington Cafe.

Gabriele Gad and Hugh Harris sometimes play at the Bonnington cafe.

Bonnington Cafe is: 50`s Beatnik atmosphere, cheap but good vegetarian food, and sometimes a fire in the hearth.

Bonnington Square, London SE8 UK (Vauxhall BR and Underground stn nearby, plus buses).


No change this week.

To see earlier articles about freemasons look in the last twelve or thirteen issues. To find them just click below:

Index of earlier issues.

To see stuff about Biwater, go to

Gabriele Gad on alternative therapy.

Small ads


(no new ads)

I want some stuff for getting data off Amstrad PCW`s onto ordinary PC`s.

Cheap laptop for writing the Other News when away from base. Contact

For sale or barter

(Will take LETS currencies): Industrial quality roofrack about 7 feet X 3.5 feet, made to measure for ford Sierra estate. I used it for woodwork contracting. It is the best I`ve ever seen. Contact

Same again, about 48" by 96", but lesser quality, for Ford Granada estate or Volvo 7 series - free owing to poor condition - but it works.


LETSSwing (the London all-LETS-members band) need a percussionist. Suit someone who thinks of playing and writing music as a creative, co-operative, gentle activity, who likes out-of-date pop and jazz, and who doesn`t like making a noise. We play so quiet you could have it in your livingroom without bothering the neighbours most of the time, and are looking at the possibilities for involvement in `the community` (playing in hospitals and so on). Contact

stop press

What, no stop press?

notes re publication.

Publication for non-profit and most educational purposes free, but must carry the sentence:

Copyright The Other News From England -

In a significant position.

All other uses are chargeable.

Editing must not be done in such a way as to misrepresent.

If you decide to print any of this copyright material in your periodical for profit, please (a)acknowledge by writing "" in a noticeable position(b) send some money to Editor, othernews co, 25 SE5 8BN, UK, and tell me what and where it is published.

Readers are invited to help prosecute illegal use of this material in exchange for receiving 70% of any financial gain resulting (after all overheads).

I sincerely hope no such event will occur.