Keeping your pecker up

It’s a fortnight since I wrote my last blog on - you guessed it - Coronavirus, which certain persons close to home suggested was alarmist, depressing, over-reactive etc. But it wasn’t hard to guess that where Italy led we would follow - even if we are a few paces behind. If I sound like a…

My book is on Amazon!

I am going to shamelessly plug myself this week. But why write a blog if you are going to be shy? I thought I'd finished writing my story The Scholar & The Black Spider six months ago, but every time I looked at it I saw that it needed a wee tweak here and there.…

Don Javier Marías Franco

In 1979, at the start of my second post-graduate year in Oxford, I was awarded the prestigious and lucrative Osma Studentship. I was required to spend at least six weeks in Madrid. Not that I was complaining. I immediately spent a good chunk of it on a Shergold double-neck guitar (as anyone would), leaving more…

Ageing rocker

I'd had enough of working for a living, at least for a while, so I moved back to Oxford to be with my girlfriend Hilary. I joined Bernard's band, together with my old schoolmate Andrew, our fellow housemate Wiff, and a young classically-trained drummer from New College called Paul. We added a female singer, a…