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Eddie Mair | 10:20 UK time, Tuesday, 21 October 2008

From Gordon Muir: This was "taken in the woods down the lane from our house, near South Queensferry."

"Autumn leaves Dhoon Glen, Isle of Man": Gary Weightman, Onchan, Isle of Man.

"Jonnie's Boston Ivy"

"I took this last weekend on a girls trip to Blackpool - no trees but an autumnal evening light....Regards, Mae Tron".

"We've got Autumn sunshine here in Rome - but no turning leaves yet. The sun is low in the sky - this was taken yesterday afternoon - and it's still warm enough to be lunching outside! Isobel". Isobel, we hate you.

Mark Annison


  • 1. At 10:43am on 21 Oct 2008, Big Sister wrote:

    Don't mind Baron Mair, Isobel, he's just jealous.

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  • 2. At 10:51am on 21 Oct 2008, ValeryP wrote:

    Mark Annison looks a bit like a tree, don't you think?

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  • 3. At 11:16am on 21 Oct 2008, Big Sister wrote:

    ValP: Definitely! Unless he's hiding behind it, of course ....

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  • 4. At 11:29am on 21 Oct 2008, U13643995 wrote:

    Late one night Alex Higgins was driving through Belfast and was stopped by the police.

    "Excuse me, sir, is there any reason why you were weaving all over the road?"

    "Yes, officer, I saw a tree in front of me so I turned left. Then there was another tree in front of me so I swerved right. But there was yet another tree in front of me so I had to swerve left again."

    "Were they pine trees, Alex?"

    "Why yes, they were!"

    "That was your air freshener, Alex."

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  • 5. At 11:32am on 21 Oct 2008, Big Sister wrote:

    You get more bucks with a bronco than 'ints with an intermittent horse, don't you? ;o)

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  • 6. At 11:35am on 21 Oct 2008, U13643995 wrote:

    Big Sis - I couldn't possibly comment.

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  • 7. At 11:39am on 21 Oct 2008, annasee wrote:

    Big Sis - I spotted that yesterday. I claim my £5, BB.

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  • 8. At 12:54pm on 21 Oct 2008, Lady_Sue wrote:

    1. Big Sis: I'm jealous of Isobel too!

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  • 9. At 1:46pm on 21 Oct 2008, Big Sister wrote:

    Eddie, is Gordon Muir related? ;o)

    Lady Sue: You should come to West Sussex - I've just had my lunch in the garden!

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  • 10. At 1:59pm on 21 Oct 2008, The Stainless Steel Cat wrote:

    Pretty coloured leaves?

    Bah humbug.

    I nearly went posterior over arm-joint this morning sliding on the beastly things. Fortunately, there's strong winds round here, so the trees should be completely unclad soon and I can get back to walking on solid ground instead of slimy mulch.

    On the photos, I wonder if it's just trees Eddie's interested in. I cheekily sent a picture taken this morning that was calculated to have absolutely no trees or leaves in it but did show an autumn scene which many of us could have seen earlier today.

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  • 11. At 2:05pm on 21 Oct 2008, IL wrote:

    Roman Isobel here - we're v. lucky with Autumn sun, but we have bizarre leaf behaviour - we never get wonderful Autumn leaf-kicking walks - the leaves (a) don't really ever turn interesting colours and (b) cling grimly onto the trees until the spring, when the new leaves seem to push them off
    (which also means we don't see stunning winter landscapes with interesting architectural bare-tree silouhettes)
    So don't be jealous!

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  • 12. At 2:06pm on 21 Oct 2008, Big Sister wrote:

    Cat: I sent Eddie some trees yesterday, and they haven't appeared. I bet your pictures appear, though. My photos were of Sissinghurst. Perhaps he doesn't like Vita Sackville-West?

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  • 13. At 2:11pm on 21 Oct 2008, Chris Ghoti wrote:

    If we are going to have many-many threads all called 'Autumn' the way we had threads called 'Food', shouldn't the people with cameras and net-savvy start to take photos of autumnal food, ready for when both lots of threads merge?

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  • 14. At 2:18pm on 21 Oct 2008, Big Sister wrote:

    Roman Isobel: My invitation to West Sussex extends to you, too. Here you get the leaf colour, the leaf fall, and the sunshine.

    I guess [grits teeth] I'd better extend that invitation to Eddie as well, before he starts to hate me. And fellow froggers - Come one, come all!

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  • 15. At 2:19pm on 21 Oct 2008, Lady_Sue wrote:

    Mae's Blackpool beach photo is stunning.

    9. Big Sis: Lucky you!

    11. Isobel, you LIVE there? You really are running the risk of us all hating you!

    13. C_G: Couldn't agree more - it is very confusing!

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  • 16. At 2:29pm on 21 Oct 2008, The Stainless Steel Cat wrote:

    Chris (13):

    So what *is* autumn food. I would be having some freshly harvested beetroot these days, if my beetroot hadn't been flooded and washed away.

    No Glass box for today yet, so I'll ask here: Is PM covering the "atheist bus" campaign? A group has been asking for donations to fund bus adverts saying "There's probably no God. Now stop worrying and enjoy life" as a counter to the increasing number of evangelical adverts on buses. When I first saw the website this morning, it had a fifth of the required money, now, it has three times as much as it needs.

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  • 17. At 2:39pm on 21 Oct 2008, David_McNickle wrote:

    C_G 13, Berry good idea.

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  • 18. At 2:55pm on 21 Oct 2008, Lady_Sue wrote:

    16. TSSCat: love the bus idea! They should get t-shirts printed.

    Speaking of which, I think a t-shirt with "A Mother's Place is in the Wrong" would sell well.

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  • 19. At 2:58pm on 21 Oct 2008, David_McNickle wrote:

    Interesting how the ivy in photo three is powered by electricity.

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  • 20. At 2:59pm on 21 Oct 2008, David_McNickle wrote:

    SSC 16, Pumpkin soup and pumpkin pie.

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  • 21. At 2:59pm on 21 Oct 2008, Fifi wrote:

    I was out with my friend's Irish Red Setter this afternoon, and remembered to take my camera. But there were no autumn tints yet!

    Took a pic of Max anyway, with the longest stick he's ever attempted to carry. He did 'bury'* it eventually, having paraded 2/3 of the way round the nature reserve with it clamped between his jaws.

    When Autumn reaches the east midlands I'll let you know!

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  • 22. At 3:01pm on 21 Oct 2008, David_McNickle wrote:

    Fifi 21, Did he bury it lengthwise or endwise?

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  • 23. At 3:03pm on 21 Oct 2008, Fifi wrote:

    * Max's definition of 'bury':

    1. Lay stick on ground
    2. Excavate a depression the diameter and depth of a dinner plate, regardless of the size of the stick
    3. Lay the stick across the dent
    4. Push stray twigs, moss, stones, etc over the bit of the stick that coincides with the dent
    5. Look extremely pleased with self, especially the mucky nose

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  • 24. At 3:24pm on 21 Oct 2008, David_McNickle wrote:

    Fifi 23, Our squirrels do better than that with the peanuts we give them.

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  • 25. At 3:27pm on 21 Oct 2008, Fifi wrote:

    David (23) funny you should ask...!

    David (24) Max would never bury a peanut. I doubt he'd even notice a peanut! But I'm jealous if you get to watch your squirrels burying; ours are much more secretive. ;o)

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  • 26. At 3:27pm on 21 Oct 2008, Big Sister wrote:

    You give your squirrels nuts? Don't you know you are denying them the pleasure of stealing them from the birdfeeders, David?

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  • 27. At 3:40pm on 21 Oct 2008, Chris Ghoti wrote:

    Blackberry and apple crumble. Very photogenic once a portion has been taken out so that the purple shows up nicely.

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  • 28. At 3:54pm on 21 Oct 2008, mittfh wrote:

    Fifi @23: With Bessie (Mum's yellow lab), it tends to be stones she "buries" on sandy ground (a common or a beach) - usually using the excuse of trying to pick it up. On hard ground, she'll just pick it directly up, roll it around in her mouth several times, carry it around a bit, then eventually dropping it.

    1) Find suitable sized stone.
    2) Excavate a trench extending from the far side of the stone to the near side of the stone (burying it in the spoil)
    3) Move backwards, continue to excavate so stone rolls into hole.
    4) Repeat steps 2 and 3 from a different angle, accompanied by occasional quiet woofs and growls of delight and contentment.
    5) Repeat step 4.
    6) Lie down on the spoil pile, with front paws dangling into the hole.
    7) Display a broad grin.
    8) Pant!
    9) Repeat from 4.

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  • 29. At 4:17pm on 21 Oct 2008, David_McNickle wrote:

    BS 26, These are nuts in shells. They do steal from the feeders as well though. A recent arrival, a jay, takes the peanuts in shells as well.

    Fifi 25, It is fun to watch the process squirrels go through to bury a nut. They even tamp dome the dirt when they are finished.

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  • 30. At 4:25pm on 21 Oct 2008, The Stainless Steel Cat wrote:

    David (20:

    I have only ever seen pumpkins in Charlie Brown cartoons. I fear they're not native to Scotland.

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  • 31. At 4:32pm on 21 Oct 2008, jonnie wrote:

    Oh how sweet - I've just had an email from the PM team saying 'ThankYou' for the photo submission.

    They are a kind bunch aren't they!

    Oh and I heard terrible language on the afternoon play today.

    Really horrible and with no warning.

    Should Radio 4 not be moderated?

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  • 32. At 4:33pm on 21 Oct 2008, galahadthreepwood wrote:

    Big Sis (at 9): Yes, I am related... but not to Eddie/Eric.
    I'm related to Daniel, Burnie, Martin, Mum and Dad of course and my wee loon Alfie; and to cousins, uncles, aunts and further extensions of the clan too numerous to mention here.

    le vrai Gordon Muir

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  • 33. At 4:33pm on 21 Oct 2008, Gillianian wrote:

    SSC (30) I fear many supermarkets and some greengrocers in Scotland are breeding them!

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  • 34. At 5:11pm on 21 Oct 2008, Chris Ghoti wrote:

    SSC @ 30, Gillianian @ 33, yesterday as ever was I listened to a Radio 4 programme about the Fife Diet -- the one on which people try to eat only local food and as one of them put it 'measure it in carbon-yards rather than carbon-miles' -- and the nice lady making a meal was making pumpkin soup and saying a bit ruefully that there seemed to be an awful lot of pumpkins at the moment. So I suppose they musty grow them in Fife?

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  • 35. At 5:21pm on 21 Oct 2008, Lady_Sue wrote:

    Pumpkins are brilliant with a roast - cut into roast potato size chunks and bake for same time.

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  • 36. At 5:50pm on 21 Oct 2008, The Stainless Steel Cat wrote:

    Chris (34):

    Possibly, possibly. But my ancestors long ago escaped from Fife to civilisation. The revelation that there are pumpkins there now comes as no surprise... ;o)

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  • 37. At 6:26pm on 21 Oct 2008, Big Sister wrote:

    galahadthreepwood(32): Thanks for a really good belly laugh :o)

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  • 38. At 6:42pm on 21 Oct 2008, Chris Ghoti wrote:

    SSC @ 30, so i went to the dictionary looking for 'pumpkin' on the off-chance they'd say where the things come from and found 'pumpkinification', which seems in the first place to have been Seneca talking about the Emperor Claudius turning into a pumpkin. I love this blog: why else would I ever have discovered *that*? Thank you!

    Encyclopedia Britannica [1911] says that the pumpkin is 'well-known in English cottage gardens', but doesn't mention Scotland, and I think they are quite likely to have been asylum seekers or possibly illegal immigrants even south of the border, being a gourd and all.

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  • 39. At 11:25pm on 21 Oct 2008, ValeryP wrote:

    SSC - shame on you "escaped from Fife to civilisation"! Isn't Fife the cradle of same? So my Dad used to say - but then he would do, he was born there ;-)

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  • 40. At 06:21am on 22 Oct 2008, The Stainless Steel Cat wrote:

    ValP (39):

    It *was*, but now parts of it have gone a bit "duelling accordians"... ;o)

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