Wednesday, March 05, 2014

Auld Da delighted

It goes without saying that they know me very well, my daughter and her mother! The birthday dinner they cooked for me was delicious. Gifts included jars of home-made orange-and-ginger marmalade which will see me through a good few weeks.

But the Rhubarb Vodka Liqueur was a delightful surprise. It comes from Lyle Organics, a family enterprise near Inverness, not far from the pretty little castle in the photo above. It must have been almost a year ago that we chattered about the potential of rhubarb and vodka as a marriage made in heaven. My research at the time indicated that the liqueur was only to be found on the shelves in Edinburgh and Urquhart Castles, as well as in a few farm shops and a deli chain that has outlets in Edinburgh, Glasgow and York.

That they managed to get a bottle to Munich was an achievement. And... it tastes as good as we hoped!

So much for the nurturing of expatriate nostalgia. although it does give me the excuse to post another lovely image of the Highlands!

A further gift resolutely addresses not a romanticized and organically distilled past but a challenging and disruptively evolving future.

“Painstakingly researched through interviews and close study for more than a decade, Boyd’s book is the most important analysis of networked culture I’ve yet to read.” says Cory Doctorow from Boing Boing.

“If you want to understand the digital worlds inhabited by today’s young people, this is the book to read.” Howard Gardner, co-author of The App Generation.

When we first learned of the forthcoming publication of Danah Boyd's book It's Complicated both Jessi and I were sure that it was a 'must read'... if for very different reasons. Obviously for a twenty-five year old the 'networked culture' in 'digital worlds' is where she will be spending all of her life, and understanding this still new environment is essential.

But for Auld Da embarking on his seventy-fifth year the motivation is a bit different.  It's a simple fact that the times when things went best for me professionally were the times when I was completely in tune with the preoccupations of young people. It started when I was not much older myself... in my mid-twenties and promoting pop performers such as David Bowie, Marc Bolan and fashion icon Twiggy. 

Fast forward a decade and it was the photography of David Hamilton which evoked a huge response from teen-age girls who saw themselves faithfully reflected in his imagery. They were the kids who bought the postcards and posters, even if the buyers of the expensive coffee-table books were probably their less innocent 'uncles'! 

A good while later I think it was my sensitivity to the concerns of a pre-digital generation of young people which informed me and my team when we were turning out episodes of soap opera storytelling reaching an audience of up to six million German television viewers.

And finally I had the blessing of late fatherhood and the privilege of accompanying the growing up of a young person in closest proximity. So am I fascinated by the networked culture in the digital worlds in which Jessi will live? Damn right, I am!


Jessi said...

Delighted to have such a great discussion partner that happens to be my Paps!

Lyle Organics said...

Glad you enjoyed our Rhubarb vodka.

Yesterday we started harvesting this year's crop of rhubarb - early due the mild winter we have had.

We are on Facebook - Rhubarb Vodka Lyles Organics