July 6, 2017

"He became a leader of the squatter movement in the 1970s, directing homeless Londoners to available space through his agency Ruff Tuff Cream Puff."

"He also helped create the Free and Independent Republic of Frestonia, an anarchist country within a country, named after a nearby street, Freston Road. Located in the Notting Hill neighborhood, it issued its own passports and stamps and applied to the United Nations for full membership.... To celebrate the queen’s diamond jubilee in 2012, he came up with a special poem of appreciation, 'Royal Babylon: The Criminal Record of the British Monarchy.' In a trans-Atlantic gesture, he later took note of recent developments in the United States with 'American Porn,' a collection of poems published on the day of President Trump’s inauguration. 'Donald Trump is really Donald Drumpf/To give him his ancestral, and risible name,”' a stanza in the poem 'President Donald J. Trump, World Emperor' began. 'It suggests dumbness, even the passing of wind/As well as the merciful transience of fame.'"

From the obituary — speaking of "passing" — of  Heathcote Williams. (NYT)

24 comments:

Matthew Sablan said...

Behold as I immortalize the merciful transience of fame in poetry.

Robert Cook said...

"Ruff Tuff Cream Puff" was a character in a Robert Crumb story.

traditionalguy said...

Anarchists are never subtle. They reject the necessary fictions that support hierarchical Monarchy. Sadly, they throw out faith in God with the bath water of revolutions.

Bob Boyd said...

Call me old fashioned, but there's only one movement I associate with squatting.

Franklin said...

Ruff Tuff Cream Puff. English people really do have the best words for stuff.

http://static.fjcdn.com/pictures/Them+british+words+a+great+pic+that+i+haven+t+seen_7c385a_3402605.jpg

MFW Americans call a "chocolate globbernaught" a candy bar
MFW Americans call a "twisting plankhandle" a doorknob
MFW Americans call a "motorized rollingham" a car

Bob Boyd said...

I don't always squat, but when I do, I prefer order to anarchy.

Meade said...

Careful, Mr. Boyd — CNN might have a dossier on that "old fashioned" activity of yours.

Bob Boyd said...

At this point it's probably a good thing I don't know how to make a gif.

Kevin said...

Man, I never did understand that Drumpf thing. All over social media lefties would say "Drumpf" and stand back with pride like they had just made the greatest argument since Clarence Darrow. "Drumpf," QED, you lose. It just made no sense at all. I don't even know what it was supposed to mean.

Matthew Sablan said...

Kevin: It's the sort of shaming that if you did to any other immigrant family, you'd be labeled a something-ist.

Tommy Duncan said...

"He also helped create the Free and Independent Republic of Frestonia..."

An act well documented in the Marx Brothers movie "Duck Soup".

Big Mike said...

Died of too much bile, I assume.

YoungHegelian said...

"Me & him, we wuz mateys from way back", his best friend & partner in anarchy, Spotted Dick, told the Times.

mtrobertslaw said...

Poor Peregrine Eliot, he thought he was supporting a genius. Well, in one way he was. Heathcote took the art of mooching to new heights.

Clyde said...

Having read his obituary, perhaps the most amazing thing for someone who seems to have been so much of a prat (as the British say) is that Jean Shrimpton was his girlfriend. Then again, women love bad boys and assholes.

Krumhorn said...

Only in a modern society does a dirtbag have a chance to live reasonably well. Back in Dickensian times, this guy would have been sweeping the street gutters with a straw broom for farthings and a stall in the livery shared with an ass. The same could easily be said of half the tenure track faculty today who have no marketable skills.

- Krumhorn

bgates said...

Until I got to the last sentence of the blog post I thought that article was about Jeremy Corbyn.

Nurse Rooke said...

Heathcote Williams was a low-life sympathizer by choice--he originally had a double-barreled name and had gone to Eton, for instance.

He was also an appalling father to his child with Polly Samson, abandoning them when the baby was very young (2 months old? can't remember). Fortunately, she ended up marrying David Gilmour of Pink Floyd fame who help raise their son, even helping him through a short prison sentence.

tcrosse said...

Captain Hook went to Eton, too.

Yancey Ward said...

Was he buried in someone else's grave?

Darrell said...

Man, I never did understand that Drumpf thing. All over social media lefties would say "Drumpf" and stand back with pride like they had just made the greatest argument since Clarence Darrow. "Drumpf," QED, you lose. It just made no sense at all. I don't even know what it was supposed to mean.

That was slimy British comedian, John Oliver, trying to show he was clever and knew about the German re-transliterations. The Trump family first used the "Trump" form of the name in the 1600s. Talk about "fresh" comedy! Prior to that, "Drumpf" had been the correct written form to express the very same sounds, "Trump." It looks silly now, and conjures up words like "dumb" amd "dump." Funny, right?

Earnest Prole said...

Wouldn't "Drumpf" in the original German sound more like "droop" and less like a fart?

DavidD said...

A D in German is pronounced closer to a T in English--that's how we get Teutonic Knights from Deutschland.

truth speaker said...

Self-centered jerkoff stands in public square screaming "Look at me, you *ss**les!!!"

I've seen and known a few of these over the course of the 45 years. Always holier-than-thou and always ready to insult and belittle the
Middle Class.