Thursday’s Piece

It’s no use crying over spilt milk; it only makes it salty for the cat.

John Lentell
Rhodesia Herald
15th April, 1971


Wednesday’s Piece

My theology, briefly,
Is that the Universe
Was dictated
But not Signed.

(Christopher Morley, 1890 – 1957)

John Lentell
Rhodesia Herald
14th April, 1971

Tuesday’s Piece

And Noah often said to his wife when he sat down to dine,
I don’t care where the water goes if it doesn’t get into the wine.

(G. K. Chesterton, 1874 – 1936)

John Lentell
Rhodesia Herald
13th April, 1971

(Image: Drunkenness of Noah by Giovanni Bellini)

Monday’s Piece

God created woman. And boredom did indeed cease from that moment – but many other things ceased as well. Woman was God’s second mistake.

(Friedrich Nietzsche, 1844 – 1900)

John Lentell
Rhodesia Herald
12th April, 1971

(Photo of my mother, Sylvia, circa late 1960s)

Feedback Piece

When I was a kid I wondered how many people might actually read my father’s Pieces of the Day buried in the classifieds Personal column of the Rhodesia Herald newspaper.

For 9 years or so he diligently researched and laboriously typed the pieces on his trusted Facit typewriter before hand delivering them to the Rhodesia Herald office in downtown Salisbury (Harare) for publication a few days later.

Aside from republishing his Pieces here and on other social media, I am also publishing them on biNu, a mobile internet app for emerging markets company I co-founded a few years ago that coincidentally has become quite a hit in Zimbabwe with 400,000 active users and growing.

The Lentell Soup feed on biNu is now getting 60,000 page views (hits) a day and continues to grow, to the point where most likely John is more widely read in Zimbabwe today than he could have imagined 45 years ago.

Here is an awesome biNu wall post and message I received today from biNu user Given Langton in Chitungwiza, just outside of Harare:

“…i know you have had so many posts on your wall but im quite sure non of them meant what mine means. First and foremost I would like to thank you for this awesome network. The main reason why I have write to you his blog is congratulate you on your Lantel blog. I read that blog everyday it will be a lie if I say it doesn’t help me, sometimes I even wonder what kind of a person your father was? these inspirations are old but yet relevent, your father was a hero sir! I am quite sure you would be proud of you too. I can see that you are appreciating his work Zimbabwe does too. i will always read it everyday.”

I know John would have been tickled pink.

Monday’s Piece

The average schoolmaster is and always must be essentially an ass, for how can one imagine an intelligent man engaging in so puerile an avocation?

(H. L. Mencken, 1880 – 1956)

John Lentell
Rhodesia Herald
4th April, 1971

Saturday’s Piece

Early morning (7 am) telephone conversation about a desk for sale in the Herald smalls:-
SHE – “I bought it from that chap ‘what’s his name?’ who is always writing in the newspapers….”
HE – (as soon as he could get a word in) “this is that chap ‘what’s his name?’ who is always writing in the newspapers speaking.”

John Lentell
Rhodesia Herald
2nd april, 1971