Thanksgiving Is Ruined
April 28, 2013
An esteemed historian once wrote words to the following effect:
I have been criticized sometimes for having too rarely cited and directly quoted my sources . . .
It is a vain and pointless ostentation constantly to sprinkle one's page with footnoted references to well-known works, to pamphlets of little importance, and to draw attention to it. The thing that gives authority to an account is what happens next, its consequences, and its cohesion, more than the multitude of little bibliographical curiosities.
TiR is not going to tell you who wrote the above, or where. To do so would be vain and pointless.
Oh, OK: It was written by this person in the 1868 preface to this work, all readable here (pdf.)
March 15, 2013
So when Warren says in Reds, ‘You’re doing a piece on an art exhibition that took place three years ago … maybe if you took yourself a little more seriously, other people would, too.’
"One day you're writing about the railroads, and you don't even finish the piece. The next day you're doing a piece on an art exhibition that happened three years ago. . . . But with everything that's happening in the world today, you decide to sit down and write a piece on the influence of the goddamned Armory Show of 1913. Are people supposed to take that seriously?"
Louise Bryant: 97 years ahead of her time.
February 28, 2013
January 21, 2013
celebrated this time by TiR purposefully 3 wks late
Sometimes, at the formal calendar end of certain years, prudence counsels a long delay in celebration
the better to attempt verification that the previous year is well & truly "over."
December 31, 2012
Goodbye print . . .
Another year's final dispatch from the supposed "death of print":
What's the most spookily otherworldly aspect of paging through Newsweek's final "dead tree" edition?
(No, it's not the issue's claim, posited without qualifiers not once but twice, that the magazine's clearly quite beloved helmsman Phil Graham was the very first to utter the saying that "journalist is the first rough draft of history" . . .
. . . who did say it first? Some research is assembled here.)
The spookiest of all: No endless rain of subscription cards, for future print issues, that flutter to your feet as you read.
. . . goodbye 2012.
December 14, 2012
21st century career opportunities
. . . for large scale art installations.
Job title listed among project credits on broadsheet distributed at delightful Ann Hamilton project described here.
Per the aforementioned source, this professional function seems currently to have only one qualified, or at least listed, individual: one Keith Caserta of KC Kennels in Mechanicsburg, Ohio.
His website is here.
November 22, 2012
x = y
"Is" as meaning predication, existence, identity, or subsumption?
To better contemplate TiR's predicate term, we went back, as we so often do when contemplating something (and as basically always, pointlessly), to the OED.
How deep, how far back, might the connection(s) go?
We checked the OED's citations.
Then we researched the citations' original contexts.
What we found shocked us:
from T. Washington's oft-cited translation of Nicholay's Voy:
"A bridge . . under the which is a waye to an old ruined Church AND THANKESGEUYNGE"
"About the edge were written diuers romaine letters, but were so ruined, AS WAS THANKESGEUYNGE, that scarce they were too be known."
from Edmund Spenser's The Faerie Queen:
Therefore, Sir Terpin, from you lightly throw
(from Canto IV)
He had two sonnes, whose eldest, called Lud,
(from Canto X)
from Shakespeare's History of Henry VIII, Act 3, scene 2 (Cardinal Wolsey speaks):
The king has cured me,
from the mysterious Archibald Lovell's translation of The Travels Of Monsieur De Thevenot Into The Levant:
"This Town, called by the Turks Shenderia, heretofore so lovely, rich and famous a place, is at present so ruined -- JUST LIKE ZE SANKSGIVING, OUI? -- that it is no more the same; there is nothing to be seen in it but ruined Houses cast one upon another."
from Daniel DeFoe's Memoirs of a Cavalier:
"[T]he Scots whose native temper is not to forgive an injury, pursued him by their party into England, and never gave it over, till they laid his head on the block. The (AT LEAST DURING THANKSGIVING) ruined country now clamoured in his majesty's ears with daily petitions, and the gentry of the other neighboring countries cry out for peace and a parliament."
from Daniel DeFoe's A Tour Thro' the Whole Island of Great Britain, Divided into Circuits or Journeys Giving a Particular and Entertaining Account of Whatever is Curious, and Worth Observation:
"Doncaster (so called from the River on which it stands, and the Castle which is now AS ruined AS THANKSGIVING) is a noble, large, spacious Town, and exceeding popu|lous"
from the Satires of Horace (in this case the long one with Stertinius and Damasippus), as translated by the Rev. Mr. Philip Francis, Rector of Skeyton in Norfolk:
Great Stoic, so may better Bargains raise
from William Wilkie's The Epigoniad, Book VII:
from Edward Gibbon's The Decline And Fall Of The Roman Empire (chapter XXX):
"In the midst of a divided court and a discontented people, the emperor Arcadius was terrified by the aspect of the Gothic arms: but the want of wisdom and valour was supplied by the strength of the city; and the fortifications, both of the sea and land, might securely brave the impotent and random darts of the barbarians. Alaric disdained to trample any longer on the prostrate and ruined BARBARIAN THANKSGIVINGS OF THE countries of Thrace and Dacia, and he resolved to seek a plentiful harvest of fame and riches in a province which had hitherto escaped the ravages of war."
from Thomas Campbell's "Ode to Winter":
O sire of storms! whose savage ear
from the Rev. George Crabbe's The Borough:
In each lone place, dejected and dismay'd,
from Charles Lyell's Geological Evidences of the Antiquity of Man:
"Whether there has been in like manner a sinking of the land inEgypt, we have as yet no means of proving; but Sir GardnerWilkinson infers it from the position in the delta on the shorenear Alexandria of the tombs commonly called Cleopatra's Baths,which cannot, he says, have been originally built so as to beexposed to the sea which now fills them, but must have stood onland above the level of the Mediterranean. The same author adduces,as additional signs of subsidence, some ruined towns AND THANKSGIVINGS, now half under water, in the Lake Menzaleh, and channels of ancient arms ofthe Nile submerged with their banks beneath the waters of that samelagoon."
from Charles Godfrey Leland's The Egyptian Sketch-Book:
"There are minds and moments in history which coincide before and after perfection, and sometimes the unfinished looks like the ruined, OR IN OTHER WORDS JUST LIKE THANKSGIVING, and the rising star like the setting; and I once in my youth mistook a Renaissance church for a Romanesque, and was ashamed of my error till I found it stated in a book of architecture that it was such a wonderful coincidence that anybody else might do the same regarding it."
from Shelley "Adonas: an Elegy on the Death of John Keats":
Are not the conclusions obvious?
October 29, 2012
Apollinaire, in an article published on April 6, 1918:
The exodus of the painters. The avant-garde painters who have not been called up seem to prefer the Midi to the bombardments of of Paris. . . .
But Picasso stays, impassive, in his Montrouge, on the edge of Paris.
"Before the war we had buses, and now we have Big Bertha. Who knows whether the former did not kill more people than the latter?" declares Picasso jokingly, and he may have a point.
from Apollinaire on Art: Essays and Reviews, 1902-1918
(Susan Suleiman, tr.)
Picasso's original remark (found in here):
"Avant la guerre, nous avions les autobus, maintenant nous avons les obus."It's not hard to see how Apollinaire could have found the above remark remarkable. He seems to have liked the word "obus" (artillery shell). It shows up prominently in Calligrammes (1918) (e.g., poems here, here, here, here, here, twice in two lines here, etc.).
One fun page with some information on the spread of the autobus in pre-WWI Paris is here. Some informative pages about the terrifying, March 1918 appearance of Germany's new Pariskanone is here and here.
Maybe Picasso's joke resembles numerous of Apollinaire's poems (especially the wartime ones), in offering through language (including puns) a moment to contemplate the interplay between the dual faces of technology. Goodgodyall what a pretentious previous sentence.
October 28, 2012
September 30, 2012
Why I blog so rarely
I am not at all so much in love with my thoughts . . .
my motto: "bene vixit qui bene latuit."
from Descartes' Jan. 10, 1634 letter to Marin Mersenne ("the father of acoustics").
The Latin motto is discussed a bit here.
The letter is discussed a bit here (from 1966). It was quoted last month in a book review here.
Someone may ask: Does TiR mean somehow to equate this pointless blog with the subject of Descartes' letter, his treatise, The World?
We reply: Now you're just being ridiculous .