Odd this day

Mar 31


It’s the 255th anniversary of this remarkable diary entry from parson-naturalist Gilbert White:

31 Mar 1768: ‘Black weather, Cucumber fruit swells, Rooks sit’

I’d love to tell you more, but I know almost nothing about him. It’s quoted in Richard Mabey’s Turned out nice again: on living with the weather, who says of it:

His journals are full of spare, glittering miniatures that often have the depth and rhythm of haiku. 31 March, 1768: “Black weather, Cucumber fruit swells, Rooks sit’ — the ambivalent progress of March caught in a three-act drama of seven words.

…and he adds:

Or this entry from 1 February, 1785 that could be a scene from a symbolist film: ‘On this cold day about noon a bat was flying round Gracious street-pond, & dipping down & sipping water, like swallows, as it flew: and all the while the wind was very sharp and & the boys were standing on the ice!’

On the strength of this, I have resolved to read both more White and more Mabey, but... you know: books; time.

31 March part deux

Anyway, happy 95th anniversary to this magnificent #LifeGoals moment from Virginia Woolf:

31 March 1928
 I have drunk a bottle of wine for dinner, and the world goes gently up and down in my head.
 — Virginia Woolf

Although, given that she was 46 at the time, it seems remarkable — to me, at least — that the effects of an entire bottle were apparently ‘gentle’.




Purveyor of niche drivel; marker of odd anniversaries