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Encyclopaedia Ball Parties

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Celebrating milestones in the progress of Encyclopaedia Ball. Click on the letters below, or scroll down, to see how we celebrated each letter.

ABCDEFGHI   J   K   L   M   N   O   P   Q   R   S   T   U   V   W   X   Y   Z

'B' Party - to celebrate reaching the letter 'B' - 11th August 2019. We had banana bread, Bombay mix and beer (Bombardier and Banana Bread brands). This first party was just a family affair. (There was never an 'A' Party, because the idea never occurred to me when I first started the Ball).

'C' Party, 13th August 2020. When the ball reached 'C' we had caviar on cream crackers, capers, croissants (chocolate and plain), cider, carrot, cucumber and celery. This party took place in the thick of the covid pandemic, so, again, it was just a family affair. Matilda read from her 'C' reading book, in which most of the words begin with 'C'.

'D' Party, 2nd March 2021. Still in covid times, so just family. Doughnuts, digestive biscuits, dahl and Doritos, with dandelion and burdock to drink. We weighed and measured the Ball for the first time. It weighed 12.5kg and had a girth of 105cm.

'E' Party, with artist Emily Harvey and her partner Phil, 2nd May 2021. Just coming out of covid restrictions, so it had to be held in the garden (it was chilly!) We had egg plant mash (salata de vineta); boiled easter eggs dyed with onion skin and decorated with gold marker (it was Orthodox Easter Day); edamame beans; endive; edam cheese; English muffins; eel-shaped bread (we failed to obtain real eel); Eccles cakes; eclairs; Eugenia biscuits; elderflower cordial; Estrella Damm brand beer. The Ball weighed 13kg and had a girth of 106cm.

'F' Party, with Faith and family, 20th March 2022. Fish pie, fruit salad, figs, Ferrero Rocher, Fanta. The Ball weighed 14.5kg and had a girth of 111cm.

'G' Party, 8th July 2022. Picnic in Kelvingrove Park, Glasgow, after rolling the Ball from Glasgow School of Art with Glasgow-based artists Gardner and Gardner and the Craig family. We had gammon (aka ham), guacamole, gorgonzola, gouda, gruyere, goat's cheese, grapes, grapefruit juice, guava juice, goji berry juice, fruit gums, gherkin (aka cucumber), gingerbread men, garlic crackers, gooseberry jam (which we forgot about), Gujarati mix, giraffe bread (aka tiger bread), Greek yoghurt. Grogu also joined us. Weight of ball = 16.5kg; girth = 115cm.

Germany Party, 21st August 2022. To celebrate the Ball reaching the article on Germany, we invited German friends to a party, at which German food was served (German sausages, Frikadellen, Brunswick ham, Sauerkraut, potato, Strudel, woodruff jelly). The Ball was painted in the colours of the German flag (though the red ended up pink, because I put the wrong pot of paint out).

'H' Party, with artist Hilary Jenner and her husband Mark, 7th January 2023. We had haggis, neeps and tatties, with hash browns, Hoegaarden, Haribo, Hoola Hoops and Häagen-Dazs ice cream. We didn't manage to hold it on Burns Night, but it was only a few days off (no Scots present). I didn't manage to get a photo of the haggis, though it was a fine one, because I was playing the host. Weight 18.5kg; Girth 118cm.

Herring Party, 11th May 2023. To celebrate the Ball reaching the article on 'Herring' (my surname), we had rollmop herrings.

'I' Party, 11 August, 2023. Guests of honour: Ian, Ilka and Ioana. We celebrated with Irish stew (lamb and veggie versions), iceberg lettuce and chicken wraps, icecream, Irn Bru, Indian Pale Ale, iced tea, Il Renesi Italian white wine. Ian shared his favourite 'I' music, the Indigo Girls. We weighed the Ball in at 21kg. It measured at 121cm in girth.

Ireland Party, 17th March 2024. To celebrate St. Patrick's Day and the Ball reaching the article on Ireland, we made some colcannon and had it with Guinness and Barry's tea, while playing Irish music on some old cassettes that my wife Ioana had recently brought home from her mum's flat. Ioana played the tin whistle and the children stayed in their rooms. Guests of honour: the artist and his wife.

Postscript to the Ireland Party: anointing the Ball with Guinness.