In an epic episode spanning an hour and a half and featuring a singing leopard seal, blowing humpbacks and the tuneless honking of the penguins the residents of Little America and Bolling Advance Base and the various dog and half-track teams reconvene and get out of Dodge aboard the Jacob Ruppert and the Bear.
Episode 091 here for your ears.
The experiments at Bolling Advance Base remain a little known and less spoken of chapter in the history of rave culture.
Alone, alone, all all alone, alone on an hypoxic spree.
Byrd gets exactly what he asks for, what he deserves, and then saved, spoiling the symmetry of an otherwise well mapped story of hubris and punishment in the Greek myth mold.
Episode 090 in your feed.
Episode 089 also exists in spite of the lack of a corresponding blog post.
Cue Gilbert O’Sullivan and hope the song reaches back in time and sees Richard Byrd neck himself before he causes any further grief to those his life intersects.
Two episodes in two days.
Take that, incomprehensible download statistics. Let’s see me make sense of you now.
Byrd returns south to finish… something… something brave and stirring and laudably scientific and humanitarian, no doubt. Prolly work it out in payroll. Or in a post-hoc rationalisation that will remain in publication for half a century.
More importantly, I get to share music I love with you.
Egoism’s song “What are we doing” rounds out this episode and I hope you’re inspired to check out their offerings, available at their Bandcamp page.
Episode 088 available here.
Cows and Condors.
Surge milkers and crap photography from a bygone era.
Iceolation and why it’s not a big deal these days, climate change, a fourteen year old interview with Professor Timothy Naish, and an excuse to use my favourite quote from my favourite robot.
Episode 087 available here.
Communications in and out of Antarctica have improved to the point you can argue with people on the internet from the land of ice and snow in near to real time. Where once it might have taken years to tell someone to fuck off, you can now give precise instructions on which direction and how far they should fuck by satellite link.
Jeff Maynard returns to the dive hut to discuss the non-voyage of the Nautilus and we receive a visitation from the ghost of an Antarctic feline.
Then the sustained influence of James Wordie and the efforts of Gino Watkins get some attention to set the scene for further British efforts in the south.
Oooh, foreshadowing and ghosts. Woooooooooooo!
Simon Lake’s modified Nautilus where it performed at its best: in the dry.
Gino Watkins demonstrating the application of local hunting techniques to supplementing expedition larder.
Episode 086 available here.
If anyone has access to a copy of “My Antarctic Honeymoon” by Jenny Darlington I would be most grateful for access to that document. It’s not urgent as the events it recounts are some way off in terms of series coverage but it’s turning out to be a difficult book to track down for less than a hundred Australian bucks. I think it offers an important perspective on Antarctica and the US presence thereon, in particular, arising as it does from one of the two women who first wintered there as part of Finn Ronne’s fraught expedition.
Also, the first pregnancy in Antarctica. What’s not to want to know more about?
It sounds like a book that has it all.
Lars Christensen funds extensive coastal exploration in concert with his whaling exploits. A decade of Norwegian effort gets compressed into a single chagrined episode.
The Norwegia: a tiny ship covered in tiny aircraft heading to a big continent.
Link to Frank Hurley’s footage and narration of the DH Moth taking orf on gentle swell. Terrifying stuff.
Episode 085 is available here.