Tag Archives: postcards

The Paper Flag Display Emerges from Chaos

I have done the first six pages of my display about paper fund-raising flags. It’s neither scholarly nor insightful but it does have a few interesting points in it, and anyone reading it will know more than the average person about the beginnings of Flag Days and the fund-rising of WW1. To be fair, of the six pages, half is photographs, so it’s not exactly heavy going. I will try to add a few more pages over the weekend, ready for Monday night.

This morning I printed the pages, found a spelling mistake and decided to ignore it. On Monday I will print the rest. My plan is to present part of it in a display file and have other topics covered on one sheet each, which will  be laminated so people can pick them up and take it all in at one glance.

Or they may do what they generally do, and ignore it. That doesn’t really matter, what matters is that since I started doing it on a consistent basis it has been encouraging other people to bring stuff along and the meetings seem, in general, to be a bit livelier.

I will then, because I know you are all longing to add to your knowledge of such things, edit it and use it as one or two blog posts. In writing, I have seen over the years, how it’s possible to use the same material more than once. I know several people who have actually made a career out of writing what is essentially the same book. It’s like mince. You make curry one night, Bolognese the next, chilli, lasagne, mince and tatties, cottage pie . . .  But it’s all just mince when you come down to it.

Sausage Pie – Carsington Water

The actual talk is about Edwardian Postcards and we are lucky to have a local expert who used to edit a postcard magazine and run postcard fairs. For once, I am confident that a visiting speaker is going to be good. That’s the trouble with visiting speakers, they often come and turn out to be a disappointment. I remember one coming, with top class recommendations and falling completely flat.

He wasn’t really a speaker on coins and had added half a dozen poorly focussed coin photos to a regular family history talk. It wasn’t his forte and the only good bits of the talk were the bits from his core talk about the things that really interested him. I’d rather have had that. I am always interested in learning new stuff and don’t mind if the talk isn’t about coins. However, as the only member of the society who doesn’t collect coins I may be in a minority here. It was kind of him to add coins but it was clear where his real interests lay, and those bits really came alive. Unfortunately, the overall impression was poor.

Monday night, however, will not be like that. The speaker will be good and we are now getting various additional displays done by members.

Pied Wagtail at Donna Nook nature reserve.

However, for now, I had better finish this and get a move on. Julia will be arriving at 7.50 (currently running twenty minutes late) and she is likely to be quite scathing if she finds the washing up bowl in its current state.

And the bean pan. I put a drop of water in the pan last night after serving my second beans on toast meal of the day and then left it on the hob. I should have checked that it was switched off. It boiled the water dry, crusted the pan with what looks like bitumen, and alerted me to the problem by spreading an acrid smell through the house . . .

This is likely to confirm her view that I can’t be trusted to look after a house on my own.

Poppies in the Mencap garden – Wilford

Pictures are just a random selection. Poppies are slightly topical and the pie was deliberate but the rest are just what appeared.but the rest  People like chicks and lambs so I thought I’d give them a go.


Hitler, Nazi, Boobs…

Yes, that got you attention didn’t it?

We’ve been talking about how to title eBay sales.

It all started when the Boss noticed someone was selling Churchill Crowns for what seems like a lot of money.  They add “WW2, Hitler, Nazi, Silver” in the title line and sell the crowns for around £12, We normally think we’ve done well if we get £1 and we don’t even bother to put them on eBay as serious coin dealers don’t consider them worth selling. Even the Westminster Collection, who are not known for their modest prices, only ask £3.50 for them.

It seems to me that words like WW2, Hitler and Nazi are attractive to people who want to spend too much on coins.

And “boobs”? Well, from what I’ve seen on sites selling seaside postcards the word “boobs” is used to stimulate sales. I have descended as far as “bosom” in my pursuit of sales (we actually sold three cards from the newly listed lot overnight). I’m not sure how much pride I’m prepared to swallow in the pursuit of wages.


Bamforth comic card

It makes me proud the be an eBayer. Well, actually it makes me question the entire basis of my life, but I thought I’d try some irony.

It also gave me a catchy title for this post. The alternative was “Salad Emergency!” based on my experience of making a salad from random fridge contents after Julia used all the bread.

Quinoa, tomatoes, olives, red peppers, pumpkin seeds with Balsamic vinegar. My fridge is far too healthy.

Quinoa, tomatoes, olives, red peppers, pumpkin seeds with Balsamic vinegar. My fridge is far too healthy.

Or “Shirt Tragedy” because my fifteen-year-old shirt finally gave way under the stress of covering my amply proportioned frontage. The loss is less keenly felt than the loss of the cats, but cuts deeper than such things as cricket defeats and the passing of Little Chef and their All Day Breakfasts. I liked that shirt.

In a couple of months it will rise again, as part of our Christmas Wreath project.

It’s that or throwing it away. It’s too worn to make good rags and Julia says no self-respecting tramp would be seen dead in it.


Ageing Bit by Bit

I was tempted to title the blog Stiff Little Fingers. This would be accurate as far as my arthritis goes, but might raise false hopes in the hearts of ageing punks. I added the link as it’s one of those words that can cause confusion when written by an Englishman and read by an American.

What happened to suggest the title was that I went to bed last night, slept reasonably well and woke up with a little finger that wouldn’t bend. It’s ached for years, and often seems rather cold compared to the other fingers on that hand, but so does the little finger on my other hand.

I now have a ring finger on the right hand that is arthritic and a little finger on the left hand that looks like it’s starting to go.

It freed up while I was at work (sorting junk postcards this morning) though it returned in the afternoon when I drove to Grantham (I only did a half day in the shop today).

So, it started with one finger (I would link to that post but can’t even hazard a guess where it is), moved on to a knee and is now colonising another finger. At this rate I have about twenty years before all my fingers are useless. (Though if my calculations are accurate I will spend my late 70s only able to type slowly and operate doorbells).

As I’ve said before, I’d have taken more care of my body if I’d realised how long I was going to need it.

A Crowd of Customers and the Laws of Chance

We opened at 10.00 this morning, the phone went at 10.01 and two elderly gents walked in at 10.02 with three bags of coins. One wanted to sell coin.

Meanwhile. his friend wanted to look at postcards, which involved finding various boxes and albums for him. We need to get organised when we move shops. Two shop assistants, two customers. So far, so good.

Then a lady came in to sell some silver, banknotes, coins and medals. It was a shame about the medals, as they had no paperwork or photographs with them. He saw service in the Atlantic, the Mediterranean, the Indian Ocean and the Pacific with the Royal Navy during the war, but without extra details or medals with names on, all the history is lost.

So that was two assistants and three customers. Then a regular customer came and wanted to look at coins. The phone kept ringing with enquiries. Then two more people came in with things to sell…

Two assistants, six customers. It’s not ideal, as you can’t leave people hanging round too long, particularly if you want to take money off them, but you can’t do three jobs at the same time.

Eventually we managed to finish, and everyone seemed happy. I wasn’t even rude to anyone on the phone, though it was touch and go at times. It wasn’t the subject matter, it was the fact that they all start with a similar, lengthy, preamble, which you can do without when you have a full shop.

I don’t mind the fact that most questions are about “rare” coins: the laws of chance dictate that one day it really will be a rare coin or an interesting medal.

It really will.