Saturday, 24 October 2009

Billy Bunter

William George Bunter (Billy Bunter), is a fictional character created by Charles Hamilton using the pen name Frank Richards. He featured originally in stories set at Greyfriars School in the boys weekly story paper The Magnet first published in 1908, and has since appeared in novels, on television, in stage plays, and in comic strips.
Charles Hamilton invented the character for an unpublished story in late 1890s. He claimed Bunter was derived from three persons; a corpulent editor, a short-sighted relative, and another relative who was perpetually trying to raise a loan on the strength of the anticipated arrival of a cheque. The name Bunter was in common use at that time, due to the popularity of a patent medicine known as Bunter's Nervine Tonic. The name Billy Bunter was used by Hamilton for a story in The gem only months before the launch of the Magnet. There was a previous character called Billy Bunter, created by H Philpott Wright, who appeared in a series of stories in the Vanguard Library from 1907, but whose character bore no resemblance to his more famous namesake.
Billy Bunter was not a major figure in the earliest days of The Magnet. Within a few years, however, Hamilton realised the comic potential of the character and made him the focal point of many of the stories.
Following the closure of The Magnet in 1940, Hamilton had little work but he became known as the author of the stories following a newspaper interview he gave to the London Evening Standard. Although Hamilton had written many thousands of stories published by the Amalgamated Press between 1900 and 1940, he had written them under various pen names, so he himself was quite unknown prior to the appearance of that newspaper article.
Hamilton was not able to continue the Greyfriars saga immediately, as the Amalgamated Press claimed ownership of the rights to the name Greyfriars (though not to Bunter himself). However, by 1946 they had relented and hamilton was then able to obtain a contract from publishers Charles Skilton for a series of hardback novels. The first of these, Billy Bunter of Greyfriars school, was published in September 1947. It was to prove the first of a series which was to continue for the rest of his life. Subsequently, in the 1950s, the initial novels were reprinted by Cassells, who took over publication of the series, which continued until 1967, with the final novels being published posthumously.
Billy Bunter was played by Gerald Campion in a BBc television series. 40 half hour episodes were broadcast over seven series between 1952 and 1961: as well as three television specials. There were also Christmas stage shows with different casts , performing the shows between 1958 and 1963.
The Bunter family home is Bunter Villa in Surrey, which Bunter frequently mis-describes as Bunter Court, representing it as a stately home. Billy Bunter is essentially a comic anti-hero, whose actions puncture and deflate the serious world of the English public school. His main physical characteristics are obesity, brought about by over-eating, and short sightedness. He is dishonest, greedy, pathologically self-centered, snobbish, conceited, lazy cowardly, mean spirited and stupid. Nevertheless, he succeeds in achieving reader sympathy by virtue of the humour the character generates.

Amazing Artwork - John Pugh

The seventh in our series of eight, featuring the work of artist John Pugh, who paints 3D murals on the sides of buldings.

Looks like a nice spot to rest your weary feet on a sidewalk in front of the Sarasota County Health Centre, Florida.


Today's brainteaser is a quiz called 'Job Lot' and today we give you the answer to the question being asked. All you have to do is decide which of the four possible answers is the right one.

01 What does an underwriter do?
Supervise the preparation and burial of the dead.
Deal in insurance.
Edit manuscripts.
Write the captions for cartoons and advertisements.

02 What does a speleologist do?
Study the use of spelling.
Practice black magic.
Study and explore caves.
Keep a record of proceedings in a court of law.

03 What does a lexicographer do?
Codify the law.
Compile dictionaries.
Take bets at sporting events.
Send messages by Morse code.

04 What does Black Rod do? Does he.
Carry MPs to imprisonment in the Tower of London.
Act as an usher to the Lord Chamberlains department.
Administer the birch in the Isle of Man.
Look after the dogs in the royal household.

05 What is the name of a man who makes his living by collecting flotsam?
A beachcomber.
A longshoreman.
A docker.
A dustman.

06 What does a purser do? Does he.
Make wallets.
Act as an official carrying money between banks.
Supervise the stocking and issue of provisions on board ship.
Track down missing persons.

07 What does a stenographer do? Does he.
Design automatic weapons.
Act as a public orator.
Write in shorthand.
Produce stencils.

08 What does a cartographer make? Is it.
Transport vehicles.
Legal documents.

09 What did alchemists try to do? Was it.
To make gold out of base metals.
To find the secret of eternal youth.
To event a means of making man fly.
To prove that the world was round.

10 What does an orthodontist do? Does he.
Study pronunciation.
Correct the malformation of teeth.
Manipulate a patients back to relieve pain.
Study evolution.

Interesting questions, some quite hard. Good Luck.

Mathematical Logic

Today's Smile

A man in a hot air balloon realised he was lost so he reduced altitude until he spotted a woman below. He descended a bit more and shouted, "Excuse me, can you help me? I promised a friend I would meet him an hour ago but I don't know where I am."
The woman below replied, "You're in a hot air balloon hovering approximately 30 feet above the ground. You're between 40 and 41 degrees north latitude and between 59 and 60 degrees west longitude.
"You must be in Information Technology," said the balloonist.
"I am," replied the woman, "how did you know?"
"Well," answered the balloonist, "everything you told me is probably technically correct, but I've no idea what to make of your information and the fact is, I'm still lost. Frankly, you've not been much help at all. If anything you've delayed my trip."
The woman below responded, "You must be in Management."
"I am," replied the balloonist, "but how did you know?"
"Well," said the woman, "you don't know where you are or where you're going. You have risen to where you are, due to a large quantity of hot air. You made a promise, which you've no idea how to keep, and you expect people beneath you to solve your problems. The fact is you are in exactly the same position you were in before we met, but now somehow, it's my fault."