Monthly Archives: June 2012

“Words should have clearly definable meanings.” – Confucius

“Men are nicotine-soaked, beer-besmirched, whisky-greased, red-eyed devils.” – Carrie Nation, American vandal and radical member of the temperance movement. Carrie Nation was infamous for entering taverns and hacking up the bar with a hatchet, and in addition to being a … Continue reading

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Salvatore Quasimodo and the Tragic Sensibility

Poetry is the revelation of a feeling that the poet believes to be interior and personal which the reader recognizes as his own.” – Salvatore Quasimodo, Italian poet and essayist. Quasimodo won the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1959 “for … Continue reading

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A Day That Will Live In Infamy – Sort Of

6 June 1813 – During the War of 1812, the American invasion of Canada is halted at the Battle of Stoney Creek, Ontario. In keeping with their inherently duplicitous national character, the Canadians cheated by attacking at night and employing … Continue reading

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Save Your Time and Your Money: Skip “Prometheus”

I am sure that everyone is acquainted with the Infinite Monkey Theorem: Place an infinite number of monkeys in front of an infinite number of typewriters for an infinite amount of time, and one of them will produce “King Lear.” … Continue reading

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While We Are On Our Personal Odyssey . . .

16 June 1904 – The first occasion of what will ever after be known as “Bloomsday,” since the events in “Ulysses,” the monumentally great novel by James Joyce, take place in Dublin on this day, during the course of which … Continue reading

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Jose de Sousa Saramago: Poet of the Soul and Champion of Human Liberty

“Human vocabulary is still not capable, and probably never will be, of knowing, recognizing, and communicating everything that can be humanly experienced and felt.” – Jose de Sousa Saramago, Portuguese novelist, poet, playwright, journalist, co-founder of the National Defense of … Continue reading

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A Great Moment Frozen In Time

19 June 1987 – Ben & Jerry Ice Cream and the Grateful Dead’s Jerry Garcia announce their collaboration in producing a new flavor – Cherry Garcia, and the history of the Confectionary Arts in America reaches its zenith.

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Donald Keene: A True Teacher

Born 18 June 1922 – Donald Keene, American scholar, teacher, writer, and, above all, translator and interpreter of Japanese literature and culture. My personal debt to sensei Keene is immense: He helped introduce me to things Japanese, and his insightful … Continue reading

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Djuna Barnes: A Voice Worthy Of Our Considered Attention

“Life is painful, nasty and short… in my case it has only been painful and nasty.” – Djuna Barnes, American writer, who died six days after her ninetieth birthday. The cosmopolitan and bohemian Djuna Barnes is perhaps best known for … Continue reading

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June 860 C.E.: Swedish Vikings Attack Constantinople

Below: These barbaric Vikings might have posed a threat to Constantinople, but they were 0-6 last season in their attacks against the warriors of Green Bay, Chicago, and Detroit. A Heartfelt Apology My Dear Readers: I made a grievous mistake … Continue reading

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