Thursday, 27 August 2009


My skills in this field have recently been questioned, specifically in relation to the word 'mackerel'. Well, really! I'll have you know I got what is now called an A* in spelling at primary school. I can even spell 'bee'. Put me to the test - write down any word you like and I'll tell you how to spell it. (Mind you, they've invented a bunch of new ones since then, so anything post 1953 is subject to fourth umpire adjudication.)

It's worth quoting the Chambers definition of 'mackerel' in full, because somebody clearly put a lot of loving care into it:

"n an edible bluish-green N Atlantic fish (genus Scomben) with a silvery underside and wavy cross-streaks on its back; a pimp (obs)" Poetry. Draw me one, reflecting both meanings.


  1. Challenge accepted. Fish coming up.
    It was my own spelling I was questioning, ha, ha.

  2. Mackerel sky and mares' tails, make tall ships carry small sails
    High cirrus clouds often form well ahead of depressions and their associated fronts. Mackerel skies and mares' tails describe forms of cirrocumulus and twisted sheaves of cirrus respectively implying strong high-level winds. In the days of sailing ships they will have been rightly viewed as likely forerunners of stormy weather.

    It'll be a mackerel if it don't rain tomorrow.

  3. Well, Soaring, the days of sailing ships certainly got their forerunners right! Two days of horizontal gales in Pembrokeshire - luckily with good company.