Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Happy Birthday, RAMH!!

Today - well, um, yesterday in my timezone - sees the third anniversary of Mr John E. Simpson's marvellous blog, Running After My Hat.

I confess, I had thought it had been going considerably longer than that - a sign, I suppose, of how content-rich it is.

I wasn't with him quite from the very first post, but I was a fairly early adopter. I was just having a browse through his early posts to see if I could find which was the first one I read, but I can't now recall.  I first 'met' JES in the comment-threads over at Moonrat's lively publishing blog Editorial Ass, and he started becoming quite a regular commenter on Froogville after I'd complimented him on his review there of Joseph Heller's Catch-22 (in my own review for Moonie's 'Celebrate Reading' series on The Wind In The Willows) in June 2008. His comments here shamed me into reciprocating (I think I'd visited his place as a 'lurker' at least a few times previously). Since then, my contributions over at his blog have occasionally threatened to exceed my writing output on here.

Back at the end of 2009 I saluted RAMH as my 'Website of the Year', noting in particular:

I espcially love his occasional What's In A Song? feature, exhaustively researched essays on classic songs, covering the history of their composition, musical structure, pop culture trivia, memorable performances, and many other fascinating side avenues too.
Another great favourite is the regular Friday post where he takes a poem from the whiskey river literary blog as the starting point for a stream-of-consciousness (sometimes more of an avalanche-of-consciousness) collation of loosely related poetry, prose, song, and much else besides. It is always a highlight of my week, and I can hardly wait to see what he's going to entertain us with next.

If you haven't yet checked out those two series, go and do so at once.

And to celebrate his anniversary, JES has created a compilation of some of the best musical moments from his blog - a lovely treat.

Happy anniversary, JES!  Looking forward to many more years of Running After My Hat!

I have finally found (a little late, but it's the thought that counts) an appropriate anniversary tribute for my dear blog-friend (well, he's American; in the UK, the tradition is to mark the completion of the third year with a gift of leather - but that's rather prosaic for a hat; and he's probably already got one) - a hat made of Waterford crystal, from the Paul W. Bryant Museum in Tuscaloosa, Alabama.



JES said...


As I recall that first contact, re: the Catch-22 piece, I vaguely remember there were compliments involved. But the specific thing I remember is that you caught me on a mistake in the casting of the film version -- I'd said Richard Benjamin played the chaplain, vs. (as you pointed out) Anthony Perkins.

Of course, as I have long since learned, both the compliments and the corrective (to say nothing of the film-geekery) were classic Froog style. But at the time, I was mostly embarrassed. And I thought, Hmm. If this person knows THAT, what other nuggets might be available at his/her own site???

Haha. Little did I suspect.

Thank you so much for your attention and your friendship during RAMH's early years!

Froog said...

You are most welcome, JES.

I have - belatedly - found a little 'gift' to add here for you.

JES said...

Is that where Blondie got that song?

(Reaching, I know! But I couldn't come up with anything beyond "People who live under glass hats..." I figured I might as well try to distract you with Deborah Harry.)