10 Things You Didn’t Know about Roald Dahl

10 Things You Didn't Know About Roald Dahl

by Ponderings Radio

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10 Things You Didn’t Know about Roald Dahl

We all know Roald Dahl, the prolific author, and a true ponderer of childhood imagination. 

Whether it be befriending a giant, turning into a blueberry, escaping witches, living in a peach or using telekinesis to make objects dance, Dahl created a marvellous timeless world transpiring from paper, and tv screens, to hearts. 

What was your favourite Roald Dahl novel? I’m indecisive, trying to decide between Charlie and the Chocolate Factory and Matilda is not an easy gig. 

Maybe you can instantly think of your favourite? There are plenty to choose from; Dahl wrote 49 of them! This includes children’s novels, poetry and even contemporary adult fiction like the ‘Tales of the Unexpected’ found in his previous works Kiss Kiss and someone like you…didn’t know that, did you? 

The Times names Dahl as one of the “50 Greatest British writers since 1945”, and this is an understatement in my belief, I think he should be number one British writer of all time. Not everyone can write a story about turning your cranky grandma into a giant using homemade medicine, then shrinking her until she disappears and bringing joy to the family that she’s gone. True art. 

A mind like this must come from someone with an exciting life, so, let’s ponder on the ten things you didn’t know about Dahl’s life. 

  1. Roald Dahl wrote movie screenplays! 

Dahl is not just your average joe blow author, he also wrote screenplays for movies like ‘Chitty Chitty Bang Bang’, and the James Bond film ‘You Only Live Twice’. Not only did he write screenplays, but he had excellent TV success with his stories, such as being featured for a six-episode season on the award-winning US series ‘Alfred Hitchcock Presents’ for ‘Tales of The Unexpected’. Watch below one of the famous episodes, ‘Lamb to the Slaughter’, which aired on April 13 1958.

2. Roald Dahl was a World War II air force pilot, and an MI6 Spy! 

Dahl enlisted in the Royal Airforce at 23 years old, and in September 1940 he received severe injuries after his Gladiator plane crash-landed in the Western Desert. He later took part in the Battle of Athens, and then was sent to Washington to become an MI6 spy. What is even more fascinating, is when providing intelligence for MI6, Dahl worked along with partner Ian Fleming (aka, 007 creator), and both of them used their spy experiences to help Fleming create the James Bond 007 series! 

And for some comical adult themes, well here’s a little insight into possibly what Dahl was up to as a spy… 

 

3. Roald Dahl has a history of women. 

Roald Dahl was a ladies man, a tall, handsome spy, who loved children and could write, I mean, you can’t blame him. But, Roald did settle down, he married Oscar-nominated Hollywood actress Patricia Neal in 1953, and they were married for 17 years, and had five children. Neal found out about an on-going affair Dahl was having with her friend Felicity Crosland who she invited to their abode in Great Missenden, and the rest is history. Dahl and Neal divorced in 1983, and later Neal termed Dahl “Roald Dahl the rotten”. Dahl then went on to marry Felicity Crosland in 1983, the same year he got divorced from Neal! Ouch. Dahl remained married to Felicity until his death in 1991. 

4. Roald Dahl has an interesting family tree, with both fame and tragedy. 

In tragic circumstances, Dahl at a young age lost both his sister and father to illness. His sister Astri Dahl died of appendicitis, and his father Harald Dahl died of pneumonia. Later in life, Dahl’s first daughter Olivia died at age seven from measles, and his son Theo was severely brain damaged at four months old when his pram was hit by a taxi, resulting in built-up fluid in his cranial cavity. Also, his first-wife Patricia suffered from three burst aneurysms and strokes when pregnant with their fifth child Lucy. On a positive note, Dahl’s daughter Tessa Dahl grew up to be a wonderful actor, and her daughter Sophie Dahl is now a famous model, designer and author.  

5. Dahl helped pioneer a new medical treatment to help his son and children around the world. 

Roald Dahl worked with Stanley Wade, a toymaker, and Kenneth Till, paediatric neurosurgeon, to create the Dahl-Wade-Till valve, which was a cerebral shunt to drain fluid from his son’s brain and prevent blockages. This valve helped his son Theo and over 3,000 other children around the world with hydrocephalus.  

6. Dahl helped save Patricia Neal’s life. 

When Patricia Neal suffered from three burst cerebral aneurysms in 1965 when pregnant with her daughter Lucy, Neal was left blind, unable to talk and walk. Roald Dahl would not let this ruin Neal’s life and put her on a hardcore routine back into health. As a result, Neal learned to walk again, talk again, and with so much success, she got back into acting and received an Oscar nomination in 1969 as the best actress in a leading role for film ‘The Subject Was Roses’. 

7. Cadbury inspired Dahl’s Charlie and The Chocolate Factory! 

Roald Dahl as a child went to Repton Public School, and while there the Cadbury chocolate factory nearby would let the students taste test samples. With an avid love for chocolate, Dahl’s experiences as a child led to the creation of Charlie and The Chocolate Factory. Also, Dahl’s postman’s name was Willy Wonka. 

8. Roald Dahl has a Marvellous Children’s Charity. 

Roald Dahl’s Marvellous Children’s Charity (previously the Roald Dahl Foundation) was created in his honour by his wife Felicity after his death in 1991. The charity helps over 21,000 seriously ill children and their families at any one time around the UK. Each year, the Dahl family gift 5% of Roald Dahl’s worldwide royalties from his work to the charity, equalling around $850,000 donated each year. 

9. This may not come as a surprise, but Roald Dahl was a prankster. 

Dahl’s 1984 memoir ‘Boy: Tales of Childhood,’ reflects on all sorts of devious things Dahl got up to as a child, including the great mouse plot where he and his friends put a dead mouse in a gobstopper jar in cranky Mrs Pratchett’s lolly shop. He also put goat poop in his “ancient” sister’s fiancé’s smoking pipe. 

10. Matilda was a devil child and Ms Honey was a gambling addict. 

In the early original drafts of Matilda, Matilda Wormwood was a “wicked child” causing havoc at school and helped her teacher Ms Honey out of a financial pickle by ‘fixing’ a horse race. Roald Dahl admitted in 1988 in an interview that after writing several chapters, he decided he got it all wrong and re-wrote it. Matilda was the last children’s novel Dahl wrote before his death in 1990. 

Oh, and I wouldn’t be a true Dahl fan if I didn’t play tricks on the readers…here is an eleventh fun fact for you.

11. Roald Dahl was a real-life BFG; he was six-foot-six!

5 Ways in 5 Days to Detox Mind, Body and Spirit

Life is busy. Busy with burdens and busy with blessings.  

While it’s easy to share and shout memes about removing what no longer serves us and avoiding toxic people, there is also much to be said about the excess of even seemingly positive things in life.

Yep, you can have too much of a good thing.  

Too many conferences. Too many audiobooks. Too many affirmations.  When your newsfeed is in excess of the same message, it can actually be counter-intuitive. In fact, you can perceive that you’re being more productive than you actually are in a false revolving door of words- not actions.

So, today, we assess how much “good” we have in our lives and dare to detox the overindulgence of overwhelm and over-stated “stuff & fluff” in our lives.

We will look at 5 areas where we are likely spreading ourselves thin with deceiving distractions on our mind, body and spirit.

Spiritually  

First things first. Having faith in something or Someone is certainly noble. Whatever your sets of beliefs are, chances are you spend time in rituals, obedient obligations, practices and more. In fact, worldwide, more than eight-in-ten people identify with a religious group.

While it’s noble to learn more about the faith you wholeheartedly follow, it can get noisy when you’re listening to and learning from multiple third party sources.

Action step:  Take some time alone and minimize your faith to the basic principle(s) and reset your focus to the very basics of what you believe.

What simple practices can you perform to  grow deeper and more intimately in your belief system?

Financially

Even too much money or too much focus on funds can be the cause for imbalance in your life.  Whether you’re on the side of saving or splurging, the saying goes, “If you don’t tell your money where to go, you’ll wonder where it went.”

Action Step:   Print off the last two months of your bank statements and locate any recurring charges that are mindlessly withdrawn from your account. Unsubscribe from programs and apps not in use.

Detox takes time as it is a process or period of time in which one abstains from or rids the body of something.

Physically  

Detox is most often associated with the foods we eat and the intention to cut out the junk, while introducing more of the good, nutrient-dense foods. There are even detox drinks you can have to boosts your immune system, detoxifies your body and helps support vital organs and their functions. Dr. Josh Axe and Jillian Michaels discuss detoxing here.

Action Step: Be realistic. Cut out C.R.A.P. (carbonated, refined, artificial, processed).  Go a day with whole foods and water – and watch your body fat reduce and your skin radiate. Rebalance is the key to detoxing, and be sure to follow the advice of practitioner!

Socially  

Having friends is great.  Having more friends and outings than you have time can be, well, exhausting.  When your planner is filled with festivities and spill over and onto your days of rest or errand-running, you may find yourself resenting your friends more than cherishing them.

Action Step: At the beginning of each week, identify dates for your priorities first. Faith, Self, Family, Vocation.  From there, leave pockets that are open for fun and friends. One those blocks are filled, begin to schedule blocks in coming weeks as new requests for your time and talents roll in.

Be patient with yourself and if you fail to detox for the day, remember to have race and try again next week.

 

Emotionally.  

This can also be identified as how you feel mentally. A great way to detox all that you are constantly processing.  Experts estimate that the mind thinks between 60,000 – 80,000 thoughts a day. That just sounds exhausting.

Action step:  While it is your brain’s job to process the many sensory things happening at any given time, you can be overwhelmed by the daily dose of disturbances and desires.  Take the time to begin a prayerful or meditative practice where you intentionally allow the noise without the processing of information.

Take these action items on weekly to detox the “extra” in your life that leaves you feeling overbooked and under-par.

Check out the Mojo Reactivate Event happening in Geelong, Victoria 7th June, raising funds for Autism Australia, it is a stellar panel of women joining Award Winning Author and founder of Planet Spectrum- Kate O’Donnell. These incredible ladies will discuss and give key information for Caring for the Carer- for parents with kids with extra needs. Morning tea is provided and its set to be a fun morning with prizes to be won and fun to be had.

Click to Buy Tickets

 

 

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