Friday, April 18, 2014

What a Tasteless Thing to do

My friend John sent me this beautiful link of a very young, but bereted, Harrison Ford punching (an also very young) Jack Lemmon in the face, in 1967.
Thanks, John

Thursday, April 17, 2014

Hens Party with Berets

A hens party, hens night or hens do, is a party held for a woman who is about to get married. The terms hen party, hen do or hen night are common in the United Kingdom and Ireland, while the terms hens party or hens night are common in Australia and New Zealand, and the term bachelorette party is common in the United States and Canada. The term stagette is sometimes used in Canada. 
It may also be referred to as a girls' night out or kitchen tea (South Africa in particular) or other terms in other English-speaking countries.

The bachelorette party is modelled after the bachelor party, which is itself historically a dinner given by the bridegroom to his friends shortly before his wedding. Despite its reputation as "a sodden farewell to bachelor days" or "an evening of debauchery," a bachelorette's party is simply a party, given in honour of the bride-to-be, in the style that is common to that social circle.
Life model Simon Lloyd poses for a hen party who are wearing berets while drawing

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Wagner's Beret

Wilhelm Richard Wagner (1813 –1883) was a German composer, theatre director, polemicist, and conductor who is primarily known for his operas (or, as some of his later works were later known, "music dramas"). Wagner revolutionised opera through his concept of the Gesamtkunstwerk ("total work of art"), by which he sought to synthesise the poetic, visual, musical and dramatic arts, with music subsidiary to drama, and which was announced in a series of essays between 1849 and 1852. Wagner realised these ideas most fully in the first half of the four-opera cycle Der Ring des Nibelungen (The Ring of the Nibelung).
Until his final years, Wagner's life was characterised by political exile, turbulent love affairs, poverty and repeated flight from his creditors. His controversial writings on music, drama and politics have attracted extensive comment in recent decades, especially where they express anti-Semitic and racist sentiments. The effect of his ideas can be traced in many of the arts throughout the 20th century; their influence spread beyond composition into conducting, philosophy, literature, the visual arts and theatre.
Some biographers have asserted that Wagner in his final years came to believe in the racialist philosophy of Arthur de Gobineau, notably Gobineau's belief that Western society was doomed because of miscegenation between "superior" and "inferior" races.
Adolf Hitler was an admirer of Wagner's music and saw in his operas an embodiment of his own vision of the German nation; in a 1922 speech he claimed that Wagner's works glorified "the heroic Teutonic nature ... Greatness lies in the heroic." There continues to be debate about the extent to which Wagner's views might have influenced Nazi thinking. While Bayreuth presented a useful front for Nazi culture, and Wagner's music was used at many Nazi events, the Nazi hierarchy as a whole did not share Hitler's enthusiasm for Wagner's operas and resented attending these lengthy epics at Hitler's insistence.

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

They Saw It Coming...

Beautiful video. They saw it all coming, the recession... Good practical economic truths!
(Ensure you have sub-titles on, if not a Spanish speaker).

Monday, April 14, 2014

Athletic Club Bilbao

Athletic Club, also commonly known as Athletic Bilbao, is a professional football club, based in Bilbao, Biscay, Spain.
They are known as Los Leones (The Lions) because their stadium was built near a church called San Mamés (Saint Mammes). Mammes was an early Christian thrown to the lions by the Romans. The lions refused to eat Mammes and he was later made a saint.
The club has played in the Primera División of La Liga since its start in 1929. They have won the league on eight occasions. In the historical classification of La Liga, Athletic are in fourth place and one of only three clubs which have never been relegated from the Liga, the others being Real Madrid and Barcelona. The club also has a women's team, which has won four championships in the Primera División Femenina.
Cake in a Atletic Txapela shape 

The club is known for its cantera policy of bringing young Basque players through the ranks, as well as recruiting top Basque players from other clubs (like Joseba Etxeberria or Javi Martínez). Athletic official policy is signing professional players native to or footballistically trained in the greater Basque Country, including Biscay, Gipuzkoa, Álava and Navarre (in Spain); and Labourd, Soule and Lower Navarre (in France). This has gained Athletic both admirers and critics. The club has been praised for promoting home grown players and club loyalty. 
Athletic is one of only four professional clubs in Spain in Primera División (the others being Real Madrid, Barcelona and Osasuna) that is not a sports corporation; the club is owned and operated by its associates (socios).

Sunday, April 13, 2014

2007 EITB Spot

Another good spot by Basque TV Station EITB (for you Paul!).

Saturday, April 12, 2014

Salaria Kea

Salaria Kea was born in Georgia in 1917. Her father, an attendant at the Ohio State Hospital for the Insane, was stabbed to death when Kea was a child. His widow took her four children, including Salaria, to Akron, Ohio.
Kea became a nurse and while working at the Harlem Hospital School of Nursing, led a successful campaign against racial segregation. In 1935 she helped to organize medical care in Ethiopia when it was invaded by Italy.
In March 1937 Kea joined an American Medical Unit working with the Abraham Lincoln Battalion in the Spanish Civil War. She later recalled: "I sailed from New York with the second American Medical Unit. I was the lone representative of the Negro race. The doctor in charge of the group refused to sit at the same table with me in the dining room and demanded to see the Captain. The Captain moved me to his table where I remained throughout the voyage."
Kea later recalled: "The Negro men who fought for Loyalist Spain never tire of telling how they celebrated when they got news that the Second American Medical Unit included a Negro nurse. Their battalion had been in the trenches 120 days of continuous fighting. I am told that during the entire First World War a fighting unit was never required to be under fire longer than this. Their clothing was shabby and worn. Many had so little to wear they could not appear in public. I was so excited over going to Spain I did not realize that many other Negroes had already recognized Spain's fight for freedom and liberty as a part of our struggle too. I didn't know that almost a hundred young Negro men were already fighting Hitler's and Mussolini's forces there in Spain.
Kea was captured by the Nationalist Army but after being held prisoner for seven weeks she managed to escape. Kea returned to her American Medical Unit but was badly wounded by a bomb while working in a field hospital. Her injuries were so severe she had to return to the United States. In 1938 she published Salaria Kea: A Negro Nurse in Republican Spain.
During the Second World War Kea worked as a nurse with the United States Army. While in Europe she met and married an Irish engineer, John P. O'Reilly.

After the war the O'Reilly family lived in New York before moving to Akron in 1975. Salaria Kea O'Reilly died in May 1990.

Friday, April 11, 2014

American Boy Scouts

Former  Boy Scout William van Druten has had it with Boy Scouts of America. He is encouraging other former Boy Scouts to speak out, return medals to BSA or otherwise protest BSA bigotry.
William van Druten, M.D., who founded Lake Superior Freethinkers, a chapter of FFRF in Duluth, Minn., was part of Troop 88, San Francisco. He sent a photo of himself to BSA pictured with his Eagle Scout medal and the words “ashamed.” Van Druten called BSA’s stance against nonbelieving members and its recent decision to reaffirm its stance against gay membership “a gross disgrace.” For van Druten, it will not be “once an Eagle, always an Eagle” after BSA ‘s reaffirmation to ban openly gay members. The discrimination against nontheists is apparently so entrenched BSA didn’t even bother to reaffirm it.
Van Druten recalled being “proud” when he earned his badge. “Nobody bothered us with what superstition we had or did not have, whether we were straight, gay, black, white, yellow or grey. We learned lashing, tenting, knotting, truth telling. We hiked the California coastal mountains, learned the trees, shrubs and birds. We backpacked the High Sierra. Yet now I discover that my youth’s delight is captured by bigots. So I am now ashamed of my badges and of my eagle award, too.”
Van Druten’s daughter, a high school teacher, wrote BSA that she will no longer be writing “recommendations for young men who are pursuing an Eagle Scout Badge. I will be telling them that there is nothing wrong with being gay, there is nothing wrong with being an atheist, and there is nothing wrong with being black. Yes, I equate them all. It is a hateful policy, and I refuse to help you perpetuate it.”

 “The Scouts had the chance to live up to their code. To set a good example for the youth of this country. Instead it chose the wrong path.”

Thursday, April 10, 2014

The Inspector Cluzo

The Inspector Cluzo is a rock band formed in 2008 by Laurent Lacrouts and  Mathieu Jourdain, both former members of Wolfunkind (natives of Mont-de-Marsan). The band consists of two musicians only, Malcolm (Lawrence Lacrouts) on guitar and Phil (Mathieu Jourdain) on drums. The group's name was found by their friend Angelo Moore, lead singer of Fishbone.
After a first EP released in early 2008, they released their first album in late 2008 entitled "The Inspector Cluzo", which contains titles including "Two Days" and "Fuck The Bass Player". The album was hailed by the French and international press, especially in Japan, where they immediately participated in Fuji Rock Festival.
In April 2010 appeared the second album by The Inspector Cluzo entitled "The French Bastards". One of the tracks was ahead of Lady Gaga in the Japanese commercial radio charts in May 2010.
In February 2012 they released their third album "The two musketeers". This album has the distinction of being a "bd-album" (graphic novel), the cd is included within the comic that serves as a wallet.
In three years, the group has sold 50,000 copies of their first two albums. They follow the philosophy of "Do It Yourself". Implanted in them in Mont-de-Marsan (Gascony), they ardently defend their independence by doing everything themselves (label, booking, management, recording and editing through their structures Ter a Terre Records and FuckTheBassPlayer) and adopting a organization working 360 degrees.
Ardent defenders of their native Gascony and independence, The Inspector Cluzo claims repeatedly their original a fully autonomous choice and rural structure. The attachment of two members of the group for the Stadium Mons Rugby, as well as their passion for duck and Armagnac, are all examples.
Musically, The Inspector Cluzo a mix of rock and funk, which might suggest a meeting between Rage Against The Machine and the Jackson 5, or AC/DC 12 and Curtis Mayfield.

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Father Paolo Dall'Oglio

Father Paolo Dall'Oglio (1954) is an Italian Jesuit priest and peace activist. He was exiled from Syria by the government of Bashar al-Assad in 2012 for meeting with members of the opposition and criticizing the actions of the al-Assad regime during the Syrian civil war. He was kidnapped by rebels on 29 July 2013.
efore his exile, he had served for three decades at the Deir Mar Musa, a 6th-century monastery 80 kilometres north of Damascus. He has been credited with the reconstruction of the Mar Musa complex and its reinvention as a centre of interfaith dialogue.
In 2011, Paolo Dall'Oglio wrote an article pleading for a peaceful democratic transition in Syria, based on what he called "consensual democracy". He also met with opposition activists and participated in the funeral service for the 28-year-old Christian filmmaker Bassel Shehadeh, who had been murdered in Homs
The Syrian government reacted sharply and issued an expulsion order. Paolo Dall'Oglio ignored the order for a couple of months and continued living in Syria. However, following the publication of an open letter to UN special envoy Kofi Annan in May 2012, he obeyed his bishop who urged him to leave the country. He left Syria on 12 June 2012 and joined in exile the newly established Deir Maryam al-Adhra of his community in Sulaymaniyah, Iraqi Kurdistan.
In December 2012, Paolo Dall'Oglio was awarded the Peace Prize of the Italian region of Lombardy that is dedicated to persons having done extraordinary work in the field of peacebuilding.

In late July 2013 Paolo Dall'Oglio entered rebel held territory in eastern Syria but was soon kidnapped by the militants of the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant, while walking in Raqqa on 29 July. Opposition sources from Raqqa said that Paolo Dall'Oglio has been executed by the extremist group. The claims are not yet confirmed.

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Bérets ("Tartes") Alpin Universel

The Tarte Alpin is Boneteria Auloronesa's largest diameter beret, the "last line of defence between the head and the clouds", as the manufacturer describes it, at 12 pouces (or 336mm diameter). 
These artisan made berets are of a denser quality wool, ensuring they keep their shape well and give ultimate protection from the weather - any weather!
Similar to all Bérets Universel, these berets are fitted with an internal drawstring, making them fully size adjustable.

Carving, Carvers & Berets

 Carving by Jesús Berecibar
Pair of busts of two Basques, a woman and a man. 1920s.  Wood. Bust of woman is signed E.Ocio. Dimensions 25 x 15.5 x 12.5 cm women and 23.5 x 13 x 12.5 cm man.
Carving on wooden plate; artist and date unknown
Santiago de Compostilla, 1977. Angel Rodriguez carves wooden (religious) figures.

Monday, April 7, 2014

Concarneau's Berets

Panorama Concarneau
Concarneau (Breton: Konk Kerne, meaning Bay of Cornwall) is a commune in the Finistère department of Brittany in north-western France.
The harbour in Concarneau
The town has two distinct areas: the modern town on the mainland and the medieval Ville Close, a walled town on a long island in the centre of the harbour. Historically, the old town was a centre of shipbuilding. The Ville Close is now devoted to tourism with many restaurants and shops aimed at tourists. However restraint has been shown in resisting the worst excesses of souvenir shops. Also in the Ville Close is the fishing museum. The Ville Close is connected to the town by a drawbridge and at the other end a ferry to the village of Lanriec on the other side of the harbour.
Valentin Zubiaurre; the colors of the sails and clothing of Concarneau
In August the town holds the annual Fête des Filets Bleus (Festival of the blue nets). The festival, named after the traditional blue nets of Concarneau's fishing fleet, is a celebration of Breton and pan-Celtic culture. Such festivals can occur throughout Brittany but the Filets Bleus is one of the oldest and largest, attracting in excess of a thousand participants in traditional dress with many times that number of observers. In 2005, the 100th festival was celebrated.
Terrick Williams: Concarneau

Interestingly, many pictures and paintings of Concarneau depict berets; on workers, sailors and fishermen. 

Sunday, April 6, 2014

Bigorre... gens d'ici

"Bigorre... gens d'ici",  is a photographic testament to the shepherds and small villages of the Bigorre, on the northern slopes of the high Pyrenees, by Pierre Duffour, 
I bought my copy when in oloron Sainte Marie, last year, while visiting the factory of Laulhere; a beautiful picture book loaded with berets and the most characterful people.
At the same time, it is the story of old people in small villages where all the young ones have left, men who became shepherds because, as one of them said, "in those days there wasn't much choice".  
Photographer and author Pierre Duffour has his own blog too, full of beautiful work:

Saturday, April 5, 2014

Five Years The Beret Project

Sunday afternoon, April 5, 2009: the very first post on The Beret Project:

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Visera: para aquellos que no se atreven con la boina.

Peaked Cap: for people who don't dare to wear a beret.
Web site Boinas Elosegui

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Five years of (almost) daily beret blogging. I recall thinking, some years ago now (like every so often ever since), how soon there would be nothing more to write about regarding berets. I have proved myself wrong, again and again. 
It really is amazing how such a humble piece of headgear, not much more than a circular shaped piece of felted wool, holds such a formidable place in history; worn by artists and scientists, revolutionaries and tyrants, pacifists and commandos, photographers, girl scouts, intellectuals of all kind and on both sides of the political divide, etc., etc.
A seemingly never ending flow of material to publish about.
Happy Birthday and let's see where we'll be in another five years!

Friday, April 4, 2014

Francesco Tullio Altan's 'Cipputi'

Francesco Tullio Altan (born 30 September 1942) is an Italian comics artist and satirist.
 He was born in Treviso, the son of Friulan anthropologist Carlo Tullio Altan. He studied at the University IUAV of Venice, but halted his studies to work for cinema and TV as a scenographer and writer. In 1970 he moved to Rio de Janeiro, where he created his first comics series for children, published in a local newspaper. In 1974 he began collaboration with Italian publishers.
His best known character for adult readers is Cipputi, a communist industrial worker who was the subject of numerous daily panels for newspapers such as L'Unità and La Repubblica, Christopher Columbus, Casanova and Franz (a parody of St. Francis of Assisi).

 Altan's satirical panels were also published in magazines such as Panorama and, more recently, L'Espresso.

Thursday, April 3, 2014

Plato Grande Festival!

Right in time for that northern hemisphere summer: the brand new Boinas Tolosa Tupida Plato Grande in cotton are in!
A great selection of colours -never seen before- in generous 35cm diameter cotton berets.
No more red-necks; this is the ultimate sun-wear, large enough to cover any part of your face and neck.

Jos van den Berg

Jos van den Berg was a Dutch painter, draughtsman, etcher and graphic designer,
Van den Berg was born in the naval port of Den Helder, in 1905. Initially, van den Berg was handicapped by his dwarfish stature, but he managed to set up a good name for himself. Joop Kropff was a good friend of van den Berg and had a great influence on his work.
Van den Berg got known for his paintings, as a draughtsman and etcher of portraits, figural motifs (including nude), still lifes and landscapes in realistic style
Moored sailing vessels near the coast 
In 1956 he received the Jacob Hartog price. He was a member of Pulchri Studio since 1935 and the The Hague Kunstkring (Artists Society) . He died in 1978 in The Hague.