"the compliments of the season" [BLUE]

 

 

 

 

As you know, December 27 marks "the second day after Christmas," the day on which Dr. Watson called up on Mr. Sherlock Holmes to wish him "the compliments of the season"in "The Adventure of the Blue Carbuncle."

 

 

We've long celebrated that particular story on this date with a poem of our own - even opting for reading it on an unnumbered special episode in 2007. But  rather than simply rehash the tried and true, we thought we'd mix things up a bit this year and bring in a guest.

 

 

Peter Blau, 2s., BSI ("Black Peter") has been with us previously (on Episode 6 and Episode 7), so we'll spare the full introduction. We asked Peter on as our very special guest in order to tell the story behind his very unusual Sherlockian decoration: a Sherlock Holmes-themed set of ornaments - each inspired by one of the original 60 stories. He regales us with the challenges involved in trying to identify these ornaments without a copy of the Canon handy.

 

 

Each year at his tree-trimming party, Peter challenges newcomers to identify each and every ornament - and we can attest that many are head scratchers. Here we have images of a handful of the ornaments, as well as the tree:

 

 

 

 

 

 

If you'd like to see additional ornaments, you'll find them on the the IHOSE apps for AndroidiOS, or Windows.

 

 

Peter also tells us about his paper written some 40 years ago in which he describes the true story behind how a cropless animal such as a goose could have a carbuncle hidden in its crop.TL;DR: it comes down to a typo - an 'o' substituted for an 'a.'

 

 

We close this episode with an audio Gas-Lamp: inspiration taken from our interview with Bert Coules (Episode 68 and Episode 69): a clip from the BBC Radio version of "The Blue Carbuncle" that hits at the core of the relationship between Holmes and Watson.

 

 

 

Links:

 

Many more links are available in our Flipboard magazine and Scoop.it page, as well as on the The Sherlock Holmes Community on Google+ (with over 2,100 members), as well as through our accounts on FacebookTwitter and Tumblr. And of course,  are nice collections of links, articles and images.

 

 

 

 

Please subscribe to us on iTunesSoundcloudStitcher or Spreaker and be kind enough to leave a rating or review for the show. And please tell a friend about us, in any fashion you feel comfortable.

 

 

Your thoughts on the show? Leave a comment below, send us an email (ihearofsherlock AT gmail DOT com), call us at (774) 221-READ (7323).

 

And above all, please let our sponsors know that you heard us rant and rave about their excellence during the programme: Wessex Press and The Baker Street Journal - and as always, a very special sponsor.

 

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Direct download: ihearofsherlock072.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 3:07am EDT

Episode 71: A Conversation with the Head of the BSI

 

 

Mike Whelan is the "Wiggins" of the Baker Street Irregulars and has been such since 1997. He joined us as a guest on I Hear of Sherlock Everywhere first in December 2007 (Episodes 14 and 15).

 

As a reminder, the Baker Street Irregulars, the literary society dedicated to Sherlock Holmes, was founded in 1934 by Christopher Morley, administered ably from 1940-1960 by Edgar W. Smith, followed by Julian Wolff from 1960-1986 and Tom Stix, Jr. from 1986-1997.

 

In our conversation with Mike, we touch on both Julian and Tom, both of whom Mike knew. We go behind the scenes at the Regency, where Mike's first BSI dinner was, as well as on the succession process that he underwent prior to ascending to the top leadership position in the BSI. As one might expect, a new leader brings new vision, and Mike's included reclaiming the Irregulars' literary roots, extending a hand internationally and honoring the memory of Conan Doyle.

 

As any good leader, Mike has been tireless in his efforts to communicate with his stakeholders (in this case the members of the Baker Street Irregulars), doing so through two annual letters. We parsed through the major themes in the 2014 mid-year letter: decentralization, BSI conferences, the next phase of the BSI Trust, and the society's "soul" - that is, its values, which we think are worth calling out here:

 

  • Promote and nurture Grand Game scholarship
  • Diverse, exceptional membership, not elitist
  • Kind, welcoming clubbability 
  • Altruistic volunteerism -- giving more than you receive, "society above self" 
  • Joyful, whimsical environment (see last January's annual dinner) 
  • Aspirational, not reactionary 
  • Inherent modesty versus taking ourselves too seriously
  • Extremely high standards -- never intentionally settle for less 
  • Fiscally responsible -- sufficient funds maintained to accomplish most, if not all, objectives 
  • Societal and member Sherlockian charitable generosity

 

Burt and Scott go on the public record with an intention for the future (it's up to you, dear listener, to hold us to it!). And Mike gives a preview of what you might expect at the 2015 BSI Weekend.

 

Finally, we discussed the very handsome Undershaw Set - a limited edition signed by the authors and in a purple slipcase with gold stamping. The proceeds from sales of the sets will go to the Undershaw Preservation Trust, an organization dedicated to preserving and restoring the unique home designed and built by Arthur Conan Doyle. [Editor's note: we previously covered this news here.]

 

The Undershaw Set from the Baker Street Irregulars Press

 

Make sure you tune in to our sponsor reads to hear Scott tell his story about Douglas Wilmer (the subject of the 2014 Baker Street Journal Christmas Annual) that references this famous scene:

 

 

 

The Editor's Gas-Lamp comes from the Vol. 4, No. 1 issue in 1949, but is not a Gas-Lamp per se. Instead, it is a poem by Paul McPharlin: "Sweet Auburn," which puts one of the original Sherlock Holmes stories to verse.

 

 

Links:

 

Many more links are available in our Flipboard magazine and Scoop.it page, as well as on the The Sherlock Holmes Community on Google+ (with over 2,100 members), as well as through our accounts on FacebookTwitter and Tumblr. And of course,  are nice collections of links, articles and images.

 

 

 

Please subscribe to us on iTunesSoundcloudStitcher or Spreaker and be kind enough to leave a rating or review for the show. And please tell a friend about us, in any fashion you feel comfortable.

 

Your thoughts on the show? Leave a comment below, send us an email (ihearofsherlock AT gmail DOT com), call us at (774) 221-READ (7323).

 

And above all, please let our sponsors know that you heard us rant and rave about their excellence during the programme: Wessex Press and The Baker Street Journal - and as always, a very special sponsor.

 

--

 

Direct download: ihearofsherlock071.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 1:52am EDT