Saturday, February 28, 2015

Spock Must Die!

The title of this post is drawn by a Star Trek novel by the great James Blish I read when I was young. The thought was prompted by yesterday's death of Leonard Nimoy, who lamentably can not be brought back by the Genesis project and implanted memories (katra) (DeForest Kelly having predeceased him such memories are lost anyway). When I was a boy no more than 4, my father and I watched the original series which, if I'm correct, was delayed a year to be shown in Germany or on the American army bases there. Later in America, who ever got to the T.V. first (we had only one), me or my sisters got to pick whether to watch Star Trek (Channel 11) or the Brady Bunch(Channel 5). Because of this I grew to hate the story of a man named Brady. Now I watch Star Trek (or TOS to geeks) on Netflix with my boys. Scotty and Bones are gone, and now Spock played by Nimoy, who always seemed like the most serious of the Star Trek actors. He did narrate "In Search Of.." which cashed in on the ancient astronauts built the pyramids and Big Foot crazes of the 70's but somehow always kept a straight face. The later Star Treks never had the same frisson of excitement. The Next Generation (TNG) seemed way to derivative and I mostly stopped watching before the Borg appeared. My favorite character in that series is Worf but he never achieved the cultural impact of Spock. Star Trek Voyager was even less compelling. I barely count the star base series except for Quark's bar. Finally, came Enterprise which was fine but the hot Vulcan is no Spock. The reboot is pretty good and Quinto is fine. But Nimoy imbued the role with some of his own personality. He took care of the character for 40 years. Spock is now an immortal of fiction almost as much so as Sherlock Holmes or Superman. Nimoy will share in that immortality. But with his passing one of the great pop culture influences of my youth has passed away. Nimoy lived long and prospered, and deserved to.

Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Churchill is a Stark Not a Lannister

The death of Winston Churchill occurred 50 years ago this month.! William Manchester famously called him "The Last Lion." Others have noted that he is not the "Last" Lion if by that it is meant the great souled men that were the beau ideal of the Ancient World! To give you some idea of where my head is, as I saw all those references to the Last Lion all I could think of was--no way he is House Stark! First, he was constantly broke and other people paid his debts. Second, he was a Romantic Conservative in the line of the Stark's rather than the prosaic Machievels of Lannisterdom. Third, his children had terrible marriages and mostly, deaths. Fourth, he was well aware of the God's of the Copybook Headings which is the British equivalent of Winter is Coming.

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Death of a King and Start of a Reign of Terror.

Today marks the anniversary of the judicial murder of Louis XVI on the charge of treason. Wiki gives a nice group of eyewitness accounts here Subsequent to this the guillotine began working assiduously and France was drenched in blood. I am in the camp that believes Louis XVI would have been executed whether he tried to flee France or not. Nonetheless, it is a singular death that opened the floodgates for many more. The Revolution inspired Bolsheviks certainly killed the Tsar and his family in emulation a century and a quarter later. Rivers of blood, vast wars and more than two decades would pass but a Bourbon would again sit the throne of France.

Wednesday, January 14, 2015

A Century of Frank-Many Good Years for Music.

The indefatible Mark Steyn has this wonderful piece on 2015 being the centenry of the birth of one Albert Frances Sinatra, known to Hoboken and the world as "Frank." That a Kingston Trio song was turned into a classic by Frank is new to me. I don't know how Steyn knows all he knows about music and Broadway and still manages to keep up with various Muslim and Leftist outrages but there you are. I only saw Sinatra once in person but even in Winter the guy could sing. Unfortunately, as Steyn relates--that attracted the notice of William Shatner who essayed the song as well. When I was Captain Kirk, it was a very good year. A year of torn shirts And Mini-skirts...

Sunday, January 11, 2015

A House Divided and a Conservative Voice Stilled

Harry Jaffa, West Coast Straussian and founder of Claremont conservatism has died at a ripe old age. I first read him long ago and, in his fights with the neo-Confederates was on his side. But as a greater task he revivified the Conservative Lincoln saving him from the liberal embrace and the Unreconstructed criticism. William F. Buckley famously said of Jaffa, "If you think disagreeing with him is hard, try agreeing with him." The pugnacious Jaffa did not belong in California to my mind. I also just learned that Walter Berns, also in his nineties has also passed on. When I was young, and since, I read them both and they are brilliant Patriots. I think Jaffa wrote "Shakespeare's Politics" with Alan Bloom long ago. I'm going to go find it and remember the both of them. In a time where the ancients are shunted aside for glib commentary like, well, like you find here, it is good to remember that in our time there were still those who could walk comfortably with Aquinas and Aristotle. R.I.P.

Friday, December 26, 2014

Who Knew Rand Paul Had Marsupial Supporters?

I was unable to separate out this video from the three videos recommended by Powerline for Christmas. Therefore, I will just link to that The Kangaroo and the drone which is the third video is priceless.

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

A Good Day For Dictators

It has been a long time since America suffered such terrible defeats as it has today.  Both defeats came at the hands of organizations controlled by the Left that likely don't see them as defeats.  First, Barack Augustus Obama attempts to normalize relations with the Castro dictatorship.  The fracking revolution which he opposed is destroying the power of Venezuela to prop up Castro.  The fall of the Soviet Union had that regime seek other benefactors and he found it in Chavezism.  Now with Venezuela going the way of all socialists the regime desperately needs infusions of cash and Emperor Obama has given it to him. 

On the Isle of the Pines Castro's political enemies are left in privation and gloom.  The old dictator-a celebrity in Hollywood and other Left precincts--has lived long enough to see "El Norte" bow to him.  Barack Obama--who opposed every effective action against Communism in his youth and is basted in the fashionable anti-anti-Communism of his class and kind has waited until after an election, so there is no accountability--to give Castro the win--and to deepen the suffering and despair of the innocents on the Isle of the Pines.  We have heard from the Soviet Union, and the Eastern Europeans and even the Chinese of how those in the prisons of the Reds gain heart even in the deepest dungeon from the slightest word against their captors by the President of the United States.  They lose heart at capitulations.  The Castro brothers--murderers and enemies of any decency in this world rejoice, and the Lady's in White weep.  

He could not wait until Castro died?  What was the rush?  Did the enemy of America need a win that badly?  I was inducted into the Cuban American Society of Georgetown long ago.  To all my friends from that Island I am sorry for this capitulation--in which the U.S. got nothing and the Dictator-everything and say, as was said in Marti's time  "Viva La Cuba Libre!"

Who knows, maybe the President who disdains bourgeoisie Constitutions, opposed all of America's actions in the Cold War, and tried to deliver substandard health care for all by confiscatory tactics really sees Castro as a role model?

Secondly, the Mad Communist King of North Korea has just had a movie pulled from American theatres by threats and hacks.  Sony has completely capitulated to the rantings and a mad man.  But at least here there is a glimmer of hope.  All of the usual suspects of Hollywood are outraged at Sony and the craven theatres. 

When Rob Lowe sounds like me the Times They Are A'Changin.  Not only him but Seth Rogen, Jud Aptow and even the atheist little homonculous Patten Oswald are all on the same page.

The portly little Communist Monster in North Korea now has Newt Gingrich, Michael Moore and Bill Maher on the same page.  Perhaps, like Yamamoto predicted of another sneak attack against the U.S., he has awakened a sleeping Giant.  I hope so, but I fear not. 

UPDATE:  They usually say only Nixon could go to China.  But Barack Obama giving Castro normalized relations for nothing is pretty much Nixon going to San Clemente.

UPDATE:  God Bless the Washington Post!  This is something I do not write a lot but I see they have come out with an editorial that matches this blog post and also note the Vietnam example which I had forgotten to do.  At least Vietnam is a strategic ally against China's expansionism so there is some realpolitik cred to that low dishonest deal.


Thursday, November 27, 2014

The Return of Rutablogging

Long-time readers of this blog know of our seasonal focus on massive root vegetables and the preparation thereof. Here now our photoessay on this year's rutabagas.


Peeled and cubed:

On the boil while our stove transmits coded messages that we will ignore as long as the burners work:

Here we see much of the rutabaga lifecycle, from post-boil draining, to the addition of butter, to finished product:

Kudos as always to Laura, who also delivered a morale-boosting speech at a critical pie-making moment yesterday ("We shall bake them on the beaches...").

Happy Thanksgiving everyone!

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

The End of the British Empire

A cheeky fellow in Britain has posted this slightly NSFW post on the closing of the British mind.

While I'm not sure the display of naked posteriors is a sign of intellectual health as Mr. Delingpole seems to argue, I do think that the high minded views of these people showing their bums is hilarious. If you want to get to the bottom of the current views of Cambridge youth you can see the whole menagerie at Mr. Delingpole's post as linked to above. I have used it primarily to put the pun in this title and will not directly link to the contest itself. Vote Katie form Sydney Sussex. The End.

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Nine Years for Mortal Bloggers, Doomed to Not Post, or so it seems

Yesterday we celebrated the ninth anniversary of this humble blog in traditional fashion, i.e. by forgetting to post anything on the anniversary.

Various events have happened about which I hope to post at some point, including a review of some delightful Imperial IPAs (thanks Laura!) and a survivor's account of moving my mother out of the house where she had lived for fifty-one years. (Spoiler alert: no one got hurt and I only swore at Mom, directly, once. Also, once more, and with feeling, THANKS LAURA!)

In the meantime, please continue to enjoy the prose stylings of a blog certainly in the running for lowest ratio of posts to masthead members.

Monday, November 03, 2014

She Really Can See Russia From Her House!

I could not help but smile at these two headlines today: Sarah Palin: President Obama Needs to Be Spanked Gateway Pundit, by Jim Hoft Original Article Posted By:JoniTx, 11/3/2014 2:52:07 PM Former Governor Sarah Palin laid into Barack Obama for insulting stay-at-home moms this week. Obama told a crowd of clueless female supporters that being a stay-at-home mother is “not a choice we want Americans to make.” It wasn’t the first time Obama attacked stay-at-home moms. (Photo) Via Her Facebook Page: Obama Declares Stay-at-Home Moms Aren’t Worth a Hill of Beans; Says It’s a Choice ‘We Don’t Want Americans to Make’..Well that just takes the cake. Sure, Obama’s latest shot across the bow in his own “War on Women” is easily deflected by women like my friends and me testifying to Putin Spanks Obama in New Russian Propaganda Art Gallery Reason Magazine, by Zenon Evans Original Article Posted By:Pluperfect, 11/3/2014 2:02:33 PM Vladimir "Putin is a gift to caricaturists," said Barry Blitt, a New Yorker artist, when he designed a Sochi Olympic-themed cover earlier this year, featuring the Russian leader in frilly ice skating attire. The caricature artists of Russia take a very different approach. On Friday a gallery titled "No Filters" with the work of about 100 cartoonists opened in Moscow, and just about all their images show Putin favorably: as a strongman, a political chess master, and a fighter against fascists and terrorists. In one conspicuously large work, Putin is spanking President Barack Obama, who has the body of schoolboy. "Targeted

Friday, October 10, 2014

It Has a Good Beat & c.

Here's a musical offering that is basically every '80s video ever:

If you look closely you can spot Mr. Bean.

Enjoy the long weekend!

Thursday, October 02, 2014

Norway Wins the Gold

Norway has decided to drop its bid to bring the winter Olympics to Oslo, not only a justifiable decision but the only justifiable decision. I can only think that the reason more cities and countries don't tell the IOC to go jump in a lake is that the decisions are being made by people who hope to cash in on the racket. Most of these people are probably mistaken.

Norway, though, has always seemed to me to be a sensible country, with a high regard with social welfare, except for lutefisk. I'm also a big fan of their traditional policies concerning England.

Can anyone name an umbrella sports organization at this point which is not essentially a criminal enterprise?

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Rejected Titles for This Post Include "Girls on Canvas"

Presenting, courtesy of the Bee Queen of Amherst:

Women Who Want to be Alone in Western Art History

My absolute favorite is "WHAT" although "I can almost reach my lute" is a close runner-up.

"You, sir, must resign - I mean retire"

Although they have not asked me directly, out of Jeterian modesty no doubt, I know that CRH and JJV wanted to see this posted. Here, therefore, is a mild corrective to some of the more, shall we say, excessive aspects of the Derek Jeter Farewell Pre-Ascension Tour:

H/t Deadspin, which also provided this heartwarming retrospective.