Harry Turner's Episodes of Personal History
Thoughts from 1992    | HISTORY Page | Obituary Page |

from letters to Steve Sneyd

13 April 1992

Dear Steve:

The feeling of disquiet persists. Actually, I'm beginning to suspect that I slipped into an alternate universe some time around last Wednesday/Thursday. I mean, one minute Labour were all set to win, throwing parties, and dominating the TV scene and then, pof! here we are with a Tory government again, Neil Kinnock resigning, the Labour Party arguing about a new leader amid shouts of a rightwing conspiracy... And our local Tory scrapes in by 900 odd votes. And us pensioners won't be getting vast increases after all. Aaaargh!

The trams are actually running through the city centre: I can report a sighting last week, and Philip returned from town on Saturday with another sighting report. In my case, I was proceeding out of Market St. into Piccadilly and heard this faint whoo-whooing in the distance and turned, together with the massed shoppers to witness the vehicle creeping round from Mosley St.

It didn't have a bloke walking in front with a red flag, but it might just as well have, the speed it was going. Evidently, still early days and pedestrians treated with circumspection: how long will that last? I ask meself. ■

22 April 1992

Anyway, in between snooker, I thought I'd better do some more sketches for John Owen, before he runs out of stock of my artwork (it saves me writing long locs). So I started doing some variations of the "array" sketch. It's a longwinded business drawing 'em by hand: I wish I'd got computer resources to do the hard work.

Alas, every time I feel I've got same spare cash to take the plunge, a bit of the house falls off and the builders walk off with my savings. I keep telling myself that did I but devote my energies to finishing off one of the projects and sold it then I could afford a computer and pay off repairs. Then I moan and say that I need to get a computer to finish off the project and there's another sneaky builder's bill due... One day all will be resolved: meantime, it's back to laborious hand drawing.

Just spent a frustrating half-hour trying to draw the second aspect of a shape. Triad shapes carry two viewpoints of a figure within their outline. Having drawn one viewpoint, it should be the work of minutes to redraw the shape from the other aspect. Maybe it's old age, but it never seems to work out that easy. Once you have done it, it's obvious of course...

I started this letter to clear my mind of conflicting images. Having looked at my abandoned effort I see a faulty connexion that was throwing me. 'Tis done, 'tis done. After much effort. All should be routine from now on. ■

Hell, it's time for more snooker...

3 September 1992

Went dashing into the Post Office on Tuesday morning to get some stamps for a batch of letters/bills sorted out over the bank holiday, but forgot about the pensioners. The place was packed with a snaky queue, and I was just debating whether to call back later, when it was announced from behind the counter that they'd run out of money because so many folk were claiming double-pensions, and didn't know when there'd be more cash arriving.

One bloke announced that he'd brought his shotgun with him, but would call back tomorrow when they were worth robbing, which caused a few nervous souls to back away, and the staff took the opportunity to announce that they would be glad to serve anybody wanting to pay money in.

I pushed to the front and got my book of stamps but I guess it didn't materially help the situation...

Then on the way back, I went thru the park and was amused to see a young bloke exercising the dog by sitting on the kids' roundabout with the dog on the end of a lead being encouraged to pull him round. It was one of those days. ■

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