The Mystery of the Screaming Man

For almost 130 years, the 3000 year old mummified remains of a man, his face contorted into an agonising scream, has perplexed scientists and Egyptologists alike. Does modern science now have the answers about this tormented soul?

In 1881, 300 miles south of Cairo in the Deir El Bahri valley, tombs, hidden from the world for centuries, were uncovered.
Here were discovered the remains of some of Egypt's greatest pharaohs: Rameses the Great, Seti I and Tuthmosis III.
Yet puzzlingly amongst these great pharaohs in an unmarked and unadorned sarcophagus lay the body of a man whose face was frozen in agony.

The hands and feet were bound and the body was uncharacteristically wrapped in a sheep or goat skin:surprisingly, as this was seen as being ritually unclean.
In 1886 three men tried to uncover the mystery on “man E” as he was now called.
They were Gaston Maspero, head of the Egyptian Antiquities Service, the physician Fouque and chemist Mathey. During the autopsy they reported that he smelled worse than usual and his internal organs had been unusually “flash mummified” with quick lime rather than by traditional methods. Fouque concluded that he had been poisoned,
“the last convulsions of horrid agony can, after thousands of years, still be seen”
But who was he, and why had he been bound so tightly that the binding marks were visible on his bones? Why had he been entombed in such a way that his soul would be damned and barred from everlasting life?

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Gun Dogs are Shooting Their Owners

"If I told you that gun dogs are living up to their names and shooting people, you wouldn’t believe me. But it’s true. Across the world, there are reports of dogs turning the gun on their owners."

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Banksy Punked Paris Hilton: Cunning Stunts

“You could stick all my s*** in Tate Modern and have an opening with Tony Blair and Kate Moss on Rollerblades handing out vol-au-vents, and it wouldn't be as exciting as when you go out and you paint something big where you shouldn't do." - Banksy.
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Banksy in Bethlehem: Art and the Barrier Between Two Nations

Banksy's visit to the West Bank brought up a string of controversy, on both sides. His art, however, remains appropriately controversial and intriguing.

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Saucy Seaside Postcards

A stay at a British holiday resort always involved a look at the postcard racks outside the shops that lined the seafront.
As a young lad the scantily clad women on the cards were eye opening and as a slightly older young lad, the innuendoes were well worth a titter behind the card rack.
To view click below

Banksy Storms New Orleans: Banksy vs the Grey Ghost

“I came to New Orleans to do battle with the Gray Ghost”.

On August 28th 2008, the day before the third anniversary of the storm, the controversial British, urban guerilla graffiti artist Banksy travelled to New Orleans.

To read more and see Banksy's pics click link

A Beautiful Sunset

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Urban Graffiti as Art: Banksy

The work of the British urban guerrilla artist known only as Banksy.
To many the sight of a wall scrawled with spray paint is an eyesore and depressing.It purports a careless society. It reminds us of vandalism and thugs on the streets.

But what if the graffiti was intelligent, thought provoking or just plain funny? Such is the work of the British urban guerrilla artist known only as Banksy.
To read more and see more of his images click below

My High Priestess

We met when we were 17. When we were 18 or 19 she dumped me for a few days. I wrote this then.
To read the poem click below

Fingal’s Cave and the Incredible Architectural Rock Formations of Staffa

The amazing rock formations on, under and around the Hebridean Island of Staffa.

Measuring only one km by half a km, this rugged, uninhabited island got its name from the Vikings. Staffa means stave or pillar.
From volcanic origins this Island, ‘discovered’ by Sir Joseph Banks in 1772 and later visited by Samuel Johnson amongst others, amazes, with its rising columns of three to six sided basalt columns.
These were formed by the cooling lava shrinking and cracking vertically. Weather and sea erosion now leave us with what appears at first glance to be man made columns.
There are several caves on the island amongst which are Clamshell Cave and Cormorant Cave.
MacKinnon’s Cave, in a list of the world’s longest sea caves (by Dave Bunnell and Bob Gulden) is shown as being the twentieth longest at 180 meters long.
But perhaps the best known of all the caves on Staffa is Fingal’s Cave.....
To see all the images and read the article click below

Diary From a Greek Island

The beauty, pleasure, and fun of a Greek Island.

A 1:45am taxi pick-up, a 5am flight from Manchester Airport and a trouble free shuttle-bus got us to our hotel, in the resort of Nidri, for 11:30 am.
The room hasn’t got the premier view, but it’s clean and modernized (by island standards) and if you stand on tiptoe and crick your neck you can get a sea view. However the views of the shrubs and trees in bloom against the backdrop of the mountains are pretty impressive.
The local comedy builders have been involved in the modernisation and up to now they have forgotten to put the screws in the room’s inside door handle and the unfixed toilet seat has decided that its real calling in life is as a genital removing toboggan.
I don’t think that the hotel’s Mr Fix-it is a local because he repaired the door handle within 20 minutes of reporting it, but the seat remained a challenge for the rest of the week.
I’ve been told that the hotel doesn’t have safety deposit boxes because “it is safe” here on the island of Lefkas.
Mrs is asleep after the journey and I’m on the balcony – it’s very hot – but I’m in the shade and that is very pleasant. Perhaps I shouldn’t be eyeing up the lemons on the tree opposite and wondering if they’re ripe.
I’m restless and want to go and orientate myself with the area – perhaps I’ll accidentally cough very loudly to see if Mrs is awake.......
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Mosaics: The Decor of Bygone Civilizations

For most, with the wide range of materials and colours available, home decoration consists usually of a trip to the shop for paint or wallpaper, tiles, floor boards or carpets.
In bygone times this was somewhat different and archaeologists are uncovering mosaics from all over the world. We have been left with a wonderful legacy of wall and floor art.
To see more images and read the full article click below

The Mystery of Bedlam Revealed

If you ever heard the phrase "It’s like Bedlam in here", you may wonder what the expression really meant or where it came from. Is it a mystery to you? Here's the scoop.
If you look up Bedlam, most dictionary definitions include: Bedlam: ‘(fig) uproarious assembly, pandemonium. (adj) fit for a madhouse, resembling a madhouse’. However in the 1932 ‘The New Standard Encyclopaedia and world atlas’, published by Odhams press Ltd., it gives only the following definition:
Bedlam: "Popular name for Bethlem or Bethlehem Hospital. It was founded in London in 1247 as a religious house and went on to become a home for the insane, the first one in the country, in 1403. In 1676 it was moved from Bishopsgate to Moorefield and in 1815 to Lambeth. There it remained until 1930, when new buildings were erected at Monks Orchard, Beckenham….”
No mention of ‘pandemonium’ or ‘state of wild uproar and confusion’.
So how did ‘bedlam’ come to mean uproar and confusion?
It is most probable, and widely believed that over the years there has been a verbal corruption of Bethlehem to Bethlem to Bedlam. The word was used in the 1500s by William Tyndale.....