Tuesday, November 05, 2013

Stuff around the web

November 2 is not only the 50th anniversary of the death of CS Lewis, but his space triology is now 75 years old.

actually, as a kid I never read Narnia, but as a sci fi reader I did read Out of the Silent Planet and loved it, but I disliked the other two books because they were preachy and snarky, and parts of them evolved into fantasy (fantasy as in Delusion, not as in fiction). But then I dislike a lot of Lewis' writings, whose prose and fiction seem a bit bitter on the edges.

Lots of irony in the first book, for example when Ransom translates the highfalutin concepts of the bad professors into Martian.
And some say that the Ransom character (in the earlier book) was based on Tolkien.

In concrete terms, I "see" Tolkien's writings as a silver filigree: beautiful with every small detail in the correct place...

but I see Lewis' writings as a Marvel comic, with good guys and bad guys and a subtle distortion of reality to fit what he wants to preach at you to shove his opinions down your throat.

and although Tolkien romanticizes women, at least he likes them and admires them when they are achievers (Luthien anyone?).

But you get the feeling that Lewis doesn't really like women at all...or understand them. Peralandra's "Eve" is so stupid as to make me angry. And yes, I know a lot of men think "Til we have faces" is a good novel from a woman's point of view, but it's really not: she thinks like a man. And no men who happily review the novel seem to realize the lead character there is a caricature of a bitter lesbian who is still in the closet and has a crush on her sister.


Downton Abbey this week had Lady Mary in the pigstye: reminded me of Eva Gabor of "Green Acres".

Yes, it is on TV here, but they are a year behind, and Lolo often changes the channel, so I download it illegally to watch.

Science factoids of the day:

The Kraken may have been real
not nowadays, but in the times when Nevada was under water.


 If Dengue and Yellow fever hit your town, blame global warming, says Mom Jones, which allows the mosquito to live in northern climes.

but even they admit:
In the past, yellow fever in the United States made its way as far north as New York City. In 1793, an outbreak even wiped out 10 percent of Philadelphia.

why, yes.

Dengue/yellowfever is carried by different mosquitos than malaria, but wait till they find Malaria once decimated those who visited the swamps/port areas of England 
and may have existed in Anglo saxon times.

I'll have to look it up, but some types of these mosquitoes don't survive winter so have to be re introduced to cause epidemics...so climate change does affect epidemics.



from Queen of hearts:The history of Blue Willow China.
why the pattern was destroyed by the Manchus and later reintroduced from the west

a love story is behind the design...a princess in love with a servant who is being forced to marry a Duke escapes with her lover...

There is a poem called “Old Poem” that narrates the markings on the blue willow china:
Two birds flying high,A chinese vessel, sailing by.A bridge with three men, sometimes four,A willow tree, hanging o'er.A Chinese temple, there it stands,Built upon the river sands.An apple tree, with apples on,A crooked fence to end my song.

Via TeaAtTrianon


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