Saturday, July 6, 2013

Wandering........................................

Jimmy Cliff.............................Many Rivers To Cross

 

A worthy goal...................................






















via

Opening paragraphs.............................

In the final days of an empire that was wheezing and lurching toward death, the aide watched his boss stare out the window into the darkness.  Time was running out.  The fate of the entire nation hinged on the next move at this juncture;  the entire planet, possibly.
-Brian Haig,  The Hunted

Fifty years ago..........................................

The Beatles.........................................Don't Bother Me

 

About life......................................



















thanks Todd

I'll have another.....................................

















Unless your eyes are better than mine, it will be excessively difficult to read the names of the fifty states in the left hand side of the chart.  You can go here to see an enlarged copy, or rest content with the knowledge that the folks in Utah don't drink enough, while the folks in North Dakota, New Hampshire (New Hampshire?), Montana, and South Dakota pick up their slack.  Ohio is safely nestled in the middle of the pack.  Apparently we are each drinking thirty gallons of beer per year.  Not me, although averaged out with my kids............maybe.

And the rodeo clown says, "Just doing my job"..........






















via

Feeling good................................



Friday, July 5, 2013

Sailing again......................................

Jimmy Buffett............Changes in Latitudes, Changes in Attitudes
 

Opening paragraphs..................

Once on a Wednesday excursion when I was a little girl, my father bought me a beaded wire ball that I loved.  At a touch, I could collapse the toy into a flat coil between my palms, or pop it open to make a hollow sphere.  Rounded out, it resembled a tiny Earth, because its hinged wires traced the same pattern of intersecting circles that I had seen on the globe in my classroom - the thin black likes of latitude and longitude.  The few colored beads slid along the wire paths haphazardly, like ships on the high seas.
-Dava Sobel,  Longitude:  The True Story of a Lone Genius Who Solved the Greatest Scientific Problem of His Time

Diagrams.............................

Sea-faring men had long known how to find at what latitude they were sailing.  Finding longitude was a bit more elusive.  Without knowing both latitude and longitude, ocean-going sailors had no way of knowing their true location.  A bit disconcerting. In 1714, the British Parliament offered a reward of £20,000 to the person who solved the problem of discerning longitude.  It took a while, but by the mid-1700's John Harrison solved the problem with a sturdy and accurate time piece and some handy mathematical computations.  (It should be noted that £20,000 in 1714 is worth more than $10,000,000 today, and that Parliament tried to stiff Harrison.  Only an appeal to the Crown got him paid in full).  Diagrams and clocks below:



H1

H2

H3

H4


Speaking of longitude and latitude

Nothing makes the earth seem so spacious as to have friends at a distance; they make the latitudes and longitudes.
-Henry David Thoreau


When I'm playful I use the meridians of longitude and parallels of latitude for a seine, and drag the Atlantic Ocean for whales.
-Mark Twain

Existing rules and principles can give us our present location, our bearings, our latitude and longitude. The inn that shelters for the night is not the journey's end. The law, like the traveler, must be ready for the morrow. It must have a principle of growth
-Benjamin Cardozo

Where in this small-talking world can I find A longitude with no platitude?
-Christopher Fry

With these changes in latitudes, changes in attitudes, nothing remains quite the same.  With all of my running and all of my cunning, if I couldn't laugh I just would go insane.  If we couldn't laugh we just would go insane.  If we weren't all crazy we would go insane.
-Jimmy Buffett

Fifty years ago....................................

Dave Brubeck Quartet...............................Unisphere

While the video may be from 1964, Unisphere was recorded and released in November of 1963 on the Time Changes album.

Granville's 4th of July Parade, a local tradition.....

Here comes the Parade.  Weather looks iffy

The Color Guard

Not as easy as he made it look

The fire departments were well represented.  Here comes the rain

The fabulous Licking County 4-H Band

Don't ask.  Don't know

The Shriner's jet is a long time fixture at local parades

Ecumenical spirit reigns.  Kiwanis sponsored parade, big Rotary float

On why calling for another constitutional convention is a really bad idea............

WRM re-runs a favorite:  the re-writing of the Declaration of Independence to conform with modern political thinking.  Full text is here.  A wee excerpt is here:

We hold these views to be consistent with the evolving cultural consensus, that all humans are equally obliged to the performance of certain Duties, that among these are the Participation in the Struggle against Racism, Economic Injustice, Genetically Modified Organisms, Homophobia, Nationalism and the Excessive Emission of Carbon Dioxide and Other Greenhouse Gasses. That to secure the performance of these Duties, Governments are instituted among humans, deriving their just powers from the considered Opinions of the Educated Classes, –That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Duty of the Enlightened and Credentialed Guardians of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute a new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect the Unquestioning Performance of their Duties by the Less Enlightened Members of the Public.

Gotta love Johnny Depp..................

His is a much better Tonto than Jay Silverheels' and he does his best to salvage The Lone Ranger.  Better writing would have helped.  Still, we were entertained, if not enthused.





Thursday, July 4, 2013

Enjoy the show....................................

Happy Independence Day.....................


















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The preview............................

Written by Thomas Jefferson in 1774, this pamphlet highly influenced colonial thinking in the year leading up to the Continental Congress.



































If you would like to read it, the text is here.   A wee excerpt is here:

...that an humble and dutiful address be presented to his majesty, begging leave to lay before him, as chief magistrate of the British empire, the united complaints of his majesty's subjects in America; complaints which are excited by many unwarrantable encroachments and usurpations, attempted to be made by the legislature of one part of the empire, upon those rights which God and the laws have given equally and independently to all.

As Nicholas Gage has accurately pointed out, people just don't talk that way anymore.

Well worth celebrating.............................























Lest you forget, the text is here.

Foundations............................................

       A Nation's Strength


What makes a nation’s pillars high
And its foundations strong?
What makes it mighty to defy
The foes that round it throng?
It is not gold. Its kingdoms grand
Go down in battle shock;
Its shafts are laid on sinking sand,
Not on abiding rock.
Is it the sword? Ask the red dust
Of empires passed away;
The blood has turned their stones to rust,
Their glory to decay.
And is it pride? Ah, that bright crown
Has seemed to nations sweet;
But God has struck its luster down
In ashes at his feet.
Not gold but only men can make
A people great and strong;
Men who for truth and honor’s sake
Stand fast and suffer long.
Brave men who work while others sleep,
Who dare while others fly…
They build a nation’s pillars deep
And lift them to the sky.
-Ralph Waldo Emerson

Fifty years ago.............................................

Dr. No..........................................the first James Bond movie

 

A Kodak moment.......................

While discoursing on the intersection of Russian state capitalism (in the form of Gazprom) and the shale revolution, Schumpeter says:

"Perhaps, like so may fictional ghosts, the spectre of shale has come to deliver a timely warning:  that if you invest your profits in fattening monopolies rather than promoting innovation you are likely to be humiliated."

The immortal power..........................

If you have a good heart you will always have some lightness of heart;  you will always have the power of enjoying special human feasts, and positive human good news.  But the heart which is there to be lightened will also be there to be hurt;  and really if you only want to be happy, to be steadily and stupidly happy like the animals, it may be well worth your while not to have a heart at all. Fortunately, however, being happy is not so important as having a jolly time.  Philosophers are happy;  saints have a jolly time.  The important thing in life is not to keep a steady stream of pleasure and composure (which can be done quite well by hardening one's heart or thickening one's head) but to keep alive in oneself the immortal power of astonishment and laughter and a kind of young reverence.
-G. K. Chesterton

Well, maybe you do.................................
























via

As much a choice today as it was 237 years ago....


Wednesday, July 3, 2013

Ghost...........................................

The Outlaws.............................................Hurry Sundown

 

Opening paragraphs.............................

Between the silver ribbon of morning and the green glittering ribbon of sea, the boat touched Harwich and let loose a swarm of folk like flies, among whom the man we must follow was by no means conspicuous - nor wished to be.  There was nothing notable about him, except a slight contrast between the holiday gaiety of his clothes and the official gravity of his face.  His clothes included a slight, pale grey jacket, a white waistcoat, and a silver straw hat with a grey-blue ribbon.  His lean face was dark by contrast, and ended in a curt black beard that looked Spanish and suggested an Elizabethan ruff.  He was smoking a cigarette with the seriousness of an idler.  There was nothing about him to indicate the fact that the grey jacket covered a loaded revolver, that the white waistcoat covered a police card, or that the straw had covered one of the most powerful intellects in Europe.  For this was Valentin himself, the head of the Paris police and the most famous investigator of the world; and he was coming from Brussels to London to make the greatest arrest of the century.
-G. K. Chesterton,  The Innocence of Father Brown

Oops.....................................

I wish they would make up their mind.  As Glenn Reynolds suggests to the Administration:  Don't Fear The Leaker.   A few excerpts:

 "If you see something, say something," as Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano is fond of observing.

 "President Obama's unprecedented initiative, known as the Insider Threat Program, is sweeping in its reach. It has received scant public attention even though it extends beyond the U.S. national security bureaucracies to most federal departments and agencies nationwide, including the Peace Corps, the Social Security Administration and the Education and Agriculture departments. It emphasizes leaks of classified material, but catchall definitions of 'insider threat' give agencies latitude to pursue and penalize a range of other conduct. ... Leaks to the media are equated with espionage."

The price of progress is..................

...........continuous self-improvement?  So believes David Merkel.  A few excerpts from this recent post:
We live in a world where we no longer have to grow our own food, spin our own cloth, drive away predators, and much more.  There was a time, 100+ years ago where most people had to do the same thing, and  there were a few specialists.  Today, we are all specialists, aside from some who live in desperately poor countries.
But specialists have a problem.  What if their specialty is being changed because of technology?  Or, what if their specialty is being eliminated by the internet?  It’s not as if you can go back to being a farmer; now you have to compete by updating your skills if your skills are in less demand than previously.
You are your own best guardian, in human terms.  No one else has as concentrated an interest in your career as you do.  Therefore, take the opportunity to improve your skills.  It will likely pay off.

Fifty years ago.......................................

Henry Mancini............................Charade

 

Diagrams......................

Today's episode (of excerpts from 100 Diagrams That Changed the World) brings us The Color Wheel of  Moses Harris.  Harris, concluding that Issac Newton had it wrong when he proposed seven primary colors in 1704, published his theory, The Natural System of Colour, in 1766.  Harris proposed three primary colors (Red, Yellow, Blue).  His handy Prismatic diagram made it easy for all to understand.






















Wisdom.............................

"All of us juggle risks and it is only later that the answer seems obvious."

"Whether it's coaching or training, however, my biggest competitor is one of the toughest in the world: Inertia."

-Michael Wade, as excerpted from here

About choices..................................

"Apparently the only invalid choice one can make today is to choose to believe that not all choices are equally good!"
-Gene Callahan, as excerpted from here

Can I get an Amen.........................?























thanks e-man

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

A little slice of American history...........................

July 2, 1863. A game-changer for all time.  Joshua Lawrence Chamberlain and the 20th Maine, about out of ammunition and responsible for the left flank of the Union Army at Gettysburg, do what seems logical now - Charge!

 

On being a pro.......................................

............or, the kids are doing mighty fine.  An update (and latest music video) from Unorganized Hancock, the house band at Sippican Cottage:

All the self-organized bands the kids form start nowhere and go noplace, almost by design.

Here's the usual plan:
A. Form band
B. ?????
C. Rock stars!

Life doesn't work that way. You need to find places to play, and audiences to entertain, and find a way to charge to play at these places. Simply learning to play isn't half of the music business, and honestly, most never even get that far. They learn two-thirds of some song no one wants to hear, and then give up. You have to amuse the audience. That concept -- you're supposed to entertain the audience, not yourselves -- is not just overlooked by 99 percent of potential musicians, it's an entirely alien idea to them. It's old hat to my boys.

The theme song for a perfect day........................

Pat Metheny Group........................................San Lorenzo

 

Nope....................................


Opening paragraphs......................

I have a friend who's an artist, and he sometimes takes a view I don't agree with.  He'll hold up a flower and say, "Look how beautiful it is," and I'll agree.  But then he'll say, "I, as an artist, can see how beautiful a flower is.  But you, as a scientist, take it all apart and it becomes dull."   I think he's kind of nutty.
-Richard P. Feynman,  "What Do You Care What Other People Think?":  Further Adventures of a Curious Character.

Fifty years ago......................................

The Beatles..................................Hold Me Tight

 

Another Beatles tune I have zero recollection of.  Written by Paul in 1961, it was supposed to be included on the Please Please Me album. Not satisfied after 13 takes they scratched it, only to resurrect it later for the With The Beatles album, which was released in November of 1963.  Never was released as a single.  To quote John,  "That was Paul's....It was a pretty poor song and I was never really interested in it."  Me neither.

Nope, I would too................................






















thanks e-man

Revolutionary anatomy.................................

"For more than 1,300 years, all Western professional knowledge about human anatomy has stemmed from the teachings of the Greek physician Galen (AD 129-216), and most physicians were never required to study the inside of the human body.  So when Flemish physician and anatomist Andreas Vesalius (1514-64) suddenly focused his attention on dissecting human corpses and describing what he found in meticulous detail, both his approach and its results shook up the medical field.  Many considered it profane."
-Scott Christianson, 100 Diagrams That Changed The World




The Streets.................................

"Each angry demonstration is angry in its own way.
     "Yet just as in 1848, 1968, and 1989, when people also found a collective voice, the demonstrators have much in common.  Over the past few weeks, in one country after another, protesters have risen up with bewildering speed. They have been more active in democracies than dictatorships. They tend to be ordinary, middle-class people, not lobbies with lists of demands. Their mix of revelry and rage condemns the corruption, inefficiency and arrogance of the folk in charge."
-The Economist, Leaders:  The march of protest

Reps......................................

















"Your representative owes you, not his industry only, but his judgment; and he betrays instead of serving you if he sacrifices it to your opinion."
-Edmund Burke

cartoon via

Monday, July 1, 2013

Chill.........................................

Pat Metheny Group.........................To The End Of The World

 

Dream.......................................

Eli Young Band.................................................Crazy Girl
  ( as always, please click through to youtube central )

 

Cave art...................................

The Chauvet Cave drawings date to 30,000 BC.  We are fairly clueless about who painted them and why.  But, does that really matter?  The source of these pictures is here, along with more pictures, history, and commentary.










A map of Chauvet Cave (more info here)


Opening paragraphs.................

On June 23, 1987, a well-heeled Cincinnati investment adviser, Paul David Herrlinger, age forty-six, called the Pittsburgh bureau of the Dow Jones News Service to make an announcement.  In a level and businesslike voice, Herrlinger said that he was prepared to buy Dayton-Hudson Corp., the Minneapolis department-store chain, for $6.8 billion.  He identified himself as a representative of Stone Inc., a local family firm, and of Capital Management Corp, a local investment-management company.
-James Grant,  Money of the Mind

Acquisitions.................................




















all cartoons via

Diagrams.....................................

Some history professors were fond of dates and chronology and some were just interested in the people and places.  I preferred the latter.  Keeping track of the former was a challenge.  A challenge that Joseph Priestley took up in 1769.  On the diagram below, the horizontal represents the passage of time, the vertical signifies what country we are considering.  For instance, the very upper right hand corner covers the history of the Americas, which would be why there is not so much there.  Not sure exactly how large Priestley's New Chart of History was, however, the right hand column details 106 separate locations.  To be legible, it must have covered a sizable portion of a wall.  A careful reader will note that Priestley dedicated his map to Ben Franklin.















From 100 Diagrams That Changed the World

Fifty years ago.................................

Ernest Tubbs...............................................Thanks a Lot

 

This song, as a single, peaked at #3 on the Country Charts in 1963.  Thanks a Lot was also the title to an album released by Tubb in 1964, with this song being the first cut.

Omnibus.....................................

         Accidentally on Purpose

The Universe is but the Thing of things,
The things but balls all going round in rings.
Some mighty huge, some mighty tiny,
All of them radiant and mighty shiny.


They mean to tell us all was rolling blind
Till accidentally it hit on mind
In an albino monkey in the jungle,
And even then it had to grope and bungle,


Till Darwin came to earth upon a year
To show the evolution how to steer.
They mean to tell us, though, the Omnibus
Had no real purpose until it got to us.


Never believe it. At the very worst
It must have had the purpose from the first
To produce purpose as the fitter bred:
We were just purpose coming to a head.


Whose purpose was it, His or Hers or Its?
Let's leave that to the scientific wits.
Grant me intention, purpose and design -
That's near enough for me to the Divine.


And yet with all this help of head and brain
How happily instinctive we remain,
Our best guide upward farther to the light,
Passionate preference such as love at sight.


-Robert Frost

Wouldn't be to sure...............................








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