I do hope you like my new look. The red stage curtains backdrop alludes to what I can only trust is the theatrical experience of visiting this site. I had thought to introduce you to the joys of 'dynamic views' where you decide from a range of options how this blog should look. But Google-Blogger in its bearded wisdom forgot to add a button to its 'dynamic' templates that permits me access to my own dashboard - so, welcome to the curtains. Had I succumbed to the invitation to go dynamic, I'd now be permanently locked out of my site.
And people wonder why they get murdered.
I had planned to add a flame theme backdrop so that you could imagine Madame as the centrepiece of a mediaeval auto-da-fé - but only this morning I learnt that Private Eye deputy editor Francis Wheen's shed has just been lost to fire along with countless priceless things - archives, letters, part of a book, etc - I believe on a day not unadjacent to Friday the 13th. Thankfully no one was hurt. I do send him my condolences. Naturally this awful news rendered my fiery temptation inappropriate. People would have accused me of callous satire; and we can't have any of that.
My curtains - as you'll see in the excerpt below - enjoyed a past life as Madame Arcati's dress.