Monthly Archives: December 2018

“Where Have All the Vowels Gone”?

Time was that you had to be an experimental weirdo to ditch vowels. In “Finnegans Wake,” James Joyce used the word “disemvowelled” in a section that includes this exchange of crystal-clear dialogue: — Nnn ttt wrd? — Dmn ttt thg. Before we are all … Continue reading

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What We Have Here Is an Influencing Situation

The Airprox board said this, combined with a lack of visual warning, had resulted in “a significant and largely unmitigated safety risk” and recommended that RAF Air Command uses a system to receive notification of commercial drone operations. (BBC News, … Continue reading

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Muriel Spark

Perhaps it is that particular literary quality, her poet’s rigorous understanding of what another modernist, D. H. Lawrence, called “the jump of words along the line”—when set against the easy-to-read “Miss Jean Brodie,” with its mass-market appeal—that has confused her … Continue reading

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Taking (Fish) Stock From Bronchial Purgatory

Coming off a debilitating relapse of bronchitis I can say the following: These are the days of Catalonia — a month’s worth plus well-lapsed a fortnight — in which I’ve had cockles (berberechos), mussels (almejas, mejillones) and a crustacean called … Continue reading

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*Affectedly Quaint

Following Dr. [Donald] Knuth’s doctrine helps to ward off moronry. He is known for introducing the notion of “literate programming,” emphasizing the importance of writing code that is readable by humans as well as computers — a notion that nowadays … Continue reading

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There’ll Always Be an England

Persons from the UK had a bit of fun with the NYTimes in responding to a query concerning “crimes” to which they had been victim in their native land. The following tweet, among others, appeared in The Guardian in mid-December: … Continue reading

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Adrienne Rich

http://www.nytimes.com/2018/12/11/books/review/adrienne-rich-essential-essays-selected-poems-1950-2012.html I don’t mean to claim some instant, magic woke-ness upon reading these books. But Rich offers me a powerful and necessary reminder of the continuous self-reflection required to fight ignorance — one’s own and others’. We need to reread … Continue reading

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