Virginia Woolf

Photo of the Day

The front page of the Daily Mirror.? In what became known as ?The Dreadnought Hoax,? the six convinced the Dreadnought?s officers that they were the ?Emperor of Abyssinia? (now Ethiopia) and his entourage, and they were received with high honours.


The Dreadnought Hoax

In 1915 during the First World War, HMS Dreadnought rammed and sank a German submarine?the only battleship ever to do so. Among the telegrams of congratulation was one that read “BUNGA BUNGA”

One of the lighter moments of Virginia Woolf’s life is when she took part in a very public practical joke cooked up by her brother Adrian Stephen and his friend and classmate Horace Cole. On February 10, 1910, the three of them, along with three other friends, dressed up as a group of foreign diplomats from Abyssinia and British Foreign Office officials. The six disguised friends requested to be taken on a tour of the H.M.S.?Dreadnought, the most important warship in England at the time. ?The captain and crew of the ship were fooled, and they showed Woolf and company the secret areas of the ship. The group even imitated the foreign language! ?Horace could not let the joke end there. ?He alerted the press about what they had done, and this photograph was printed in?the newspaper.

February 7th, 1910 was the date for one of the most famous practical jokes in British military history.

Renowned prankster?Horace de Vere Cole?alongside his motley crew of writers and artists including Virginia Woolf decided to answer a request from his friend – an officer aboard HMS Hawke – to hoax their fierce rivals on HMS Dreadnought.

Virginia explained:

“The officers of the Hawke and the Dreadnought had a feud. … And Cole’s friend who was on the Hawke had come to Cole, and said to him, ‘You’re a great hand at hoaxing people; couldn’t you do something to pull the leg of the Dreadnought?”

Horace obliged.

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Are right wing women sexier?

Cactus Kate posted the link to this on Facebook, where a?liberal-lefty-pro-feminist man ?(there is some debate over whether or not he is actually a man) explains why he thinks right wing women are sexier.

Not long ago I was out drinking with a group of friends and we started playing the If-You-Had-To game. The idea is to present players with two people they would never want to sleep with ? and then make them choose which they?d sleep with. Here are some of the fiendish alternatives I had to face: Imelda Marcos or Wallace Simpson? Ayn Rand or Yoko Ono? Gertrude Stein or Virginia Woolf?

Then one joker said: Theresa May or Jemima Khan? Everyone laughed at this no-contest choice. Everyone except me. How could I tell them the ugly truth: I?d prefer a night of passion with right-wing Theresa over lefty Jemima any day of the week.

But then I belong to that small, deviant group of liberal-lefty-pro-feminist men who find conservative/right-wing women super sexy. In an age when anything goes ? at least in terms of sexual pleasure ? ours is a lust that dare not speak its name.

I know this because later that evening, I turned to one of the group and confessed my secret longing for the likes of Theresa May, Ann Coulter and Sarah Palin ? ideally all at once. I thought my fantasy night of passion would be received with sympathy and understanding. After all, this friend of mine pays a woman in Earls Court to put him on a rack and do things you don?t want to read about. He just looked at me and said: ?You?re sick!?

Heh..sick for hankering after?right wing women?

I can just hear the chorus of left-wing women complaining that, here we go again ? judging women in politics by their looks! Well, actually, looks have nothing to do with it. By that criteria, I should be swooning over Jemima instead of drooling over Mrs May. So no, this is not about looks; it?s about the sexiness of a certain mindset and sensibility. What is the appeal of right-wing women to men like me? After all, left-wing men are not supposed to sleep with such women. (We?re meant to find their political convictions too repulsive for that sort of thing.) But politics is rooted in tribalism and dark emotions, as much as reason. To lefty men of my persuasion, right-wing women are the?Other; alluring because they are so exotic; exciting because they?re so forbidden.

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