Slightly horrible Friday Fun

Good morning! Apologies for the lack of blogging this week, it’s been half term and I have been up to my eye balls in fun activities – helping people renovate their new homes, having a Harry Potter marathon and hosting consecutive house guests. (More on that last one anon…) But fear not, just because I’ve been having fun does not mean that there is no fun for you!

To start, and because you’ll curse me for this earworm for the rest of the day, here’s a rather wonderful use of a piano. Yes, it’s a One Direction song, but that song (as I’ve said before and no doubt will say again) is one of the best pop songs of recent times. One of my guests this week was an 11 year old called Doris and we hummed this across London on Tuesday. The things you can do with children…

Anyway, this is lovely and I highly recommend a perusal of The Piano Guys’ YouTube channel for other classics.

When exploring your favourite city with a smaller person, you suddenly find yourself explaining things that you’ve become so accustomed to that you forget they’re interesting. Doris, ever observant, asked why there were some spectacularly ugly buildings on my otherwise rather lovely street. The answer – as you’ll no doubt have guessed – is that the ugly buildings replaced ones destroyed by a bomb in WW2. It’s usually pretty easy to guess where this has happened, but it turns out that there’s also a website that shows you exactly where bombs did fall. I appreciate that this is rather  morbid fun, but when you’re a history geek like me, it’s utterly fascinating. (And I checked, the ugly addition to Lambs Conduit St is indeed a result of a bomb.)

Bomb Sight HolbornThe bomb sites around Holborn.

Talking of history, this week has also been the week in which I’ve finally appreciated the genius that is Horrible Histories. I mean, I always knew that they were good (and I’m talking about the TV show, more than the books) but I’d never really made it a priority to sit down and watch them. As of the 5th (and final) series beginning last Monday, this has changed. Yes, I’m incredibly late to the party, but iPlayer does currently have a large cache of them to plough through and YouTube comes up trumps too. Obviously, I love anything that supplies me with new factoids to share, but what is supremely amazing about this latest series is its interpretations of classic songs/genres. Simon and Garfunkel explaining why vikings weren’t so bad after all? Charles Dickens as Morrissey, being morose? A soul inspired retelling of Rosa Parks’ contribution to the civil rights movement? All utterly inspired and quite possibly slightly lost on primary school children…

Viking Simon & GarfunkelViking Simon & Garfunkel.

Second house guest (a 31 year old teacher) shared some of her favourites with me and this boyband parody featuring the Hanoverian Georges has to be shared:

[Talking of Horrible Histories, I always intended to write one entitled ‘Miserable Missionaries’, but still haven’t quite got around to it…]

And with that, I shall leave you to make the most of your Friday, safe in the knowledge that at some point you’ll probably catch yourself humming “na-nanana- na-na-naa” to yourself and will curse me for it.

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