Friday, 6 June 2014

blonde angel

I had never heard of Luciano Re Cecconi till he was the answer to a quiz question the other day. His nickname was the blonde angel and this is a line from his Wikibiog:

Re Cecconi played for the Italian under-23 side, and was on the roster of the national squad at the 1974 World Cup. He was shot dead in 1977, after pretending to rob a friend's jewelry shop as a practical joke.

Andrew Gilligan at the Telegraph has been funny about the awful Lutfur Rahman's reelection as mayor of Tower Hamlets. The Panorama expose of Rahman was great, which I know even though I didn't watch it because a friend of mine paraphrased it for me in a way that only took a few hours longer than my watching it would have done. Rahman's team intimidated voters and misused funds on campaigning, and also:

Some polling stations were moved to new, unfamiliar, and harder-to-reach locations. One, in the not very pro-Rahman territory of Canary Wharf, was placed on a traffic island, at the bottom of a ramp, in the middle of a busy four-lane road!

If you are anything like me, you got to the end of this thinking, 'stuck in a disused lavatory with a sign on the door saying beware of the leopard.'

In general, books aren't best read in synopsis. On the other hand, I cannot too highly recommend the synopsis of The Secret of Chimneys by Agatha Christie. It was turned into a Marple a few years ago, but believe me, the synopsis provides no spoilers for the Marple version. Seriously, treat yourself.

But if you are too busy and just want some highlights:

Hiram Fish, a collector of first edition books … Unaware she did not write the letters, he wants to blackmail her. On a whim, she pays, and promises more money the next day … The Koh-i-Noor diamond had been stolen from the Tower of London (and replaced by a paste copy) some years earlier, by a French thief named King Victor … he gives the real memoirs (which have no embarrassing anecdotes) to Jimmy McGrath to deliver to the publishers, to earn his one thousand pounds …  presents himself as the missing Prince Nicholas, who had spread the rumours of his own death in the Congo and through coincidence was led into this adventure ...

In fact, the more I read these notes, the more I can't believe this wasn't written by Wodehouse. Everything about it seems like Wodehouse.

1 comment:

jondrytay said...

I was in the European Premiere of the stage version of 'The Secret Of Chimneys' (called, simply, 'Chimneys') in 2006. The world premiere was in 2004, in Calgary.

It was originally scheduled to open at the Embassy Theatre (which is now Central) in the 30s, starring Wolfit and Olivier. It never opened. Make of that what you will.