Tuesday, 13 June 2017

General Discussion, the Music Challenge, Great Historical Events & the Birth Day Thing.

🙉 I started to watch some Political stuff from the US of A today, specifically the testimony of the Attorney General before the Senate Committee and after a few minutes of listening to dissembling and basic lies, I decided instead to take advantage of the lovely weather and mow the lawn. Feeling much better for all that now, even though I did catch the last few questions. I'm sure the current resident of the White House will be tweeting in the early morning hours crowing about how the testimony exonerates him completely... lies lies lies

So let's see, how about more interesting subject matter.

The Missus's Music Challenge

Today we look at Days 21 and 22.

Day 21 - A Song with a Person's Name in the Title. Jo advised people not to pick Billy Don't Be a Hero by The Poppy Family due to the fact that I've always hated the song... *g*. Having said that, my choice was a song from my childhood, Norman by Sue Thompson. Jo chose one of my favourite songs, Peg by Steely Dan, excellent song by an excellent group. Other choices included Ruby by Kenny Rogers, Jane by Jefferson Starship, Sara Smile by Hall & Oates, etc.

Day 22 - A Song that Motivates You. Many positive, upbeat songs for this category. I picked a song that Jo had introduced me to, Absolutely Everybody by Vanessa Amorosi. Jo picked Live Like We're Dying by The Script. Her sister, Sue, picked Don't Give Up by Peter Gabriel and Kate Bush. A couple of other selections were Don't Stop Me Now by Queen and You're the Voice by John Farnham.

Day 23 will be the next entry.

Great Historical Events

Today's entry starts in 1776.

"1776. Col. St. Clair marched, with a regiment of soldiers, from Pennsylvania to Canada during the extreme cold of a northern winter. (Ed. Note - yup, that can be cold.)
March 4. - Washington fortifies and takes possession of Dorchester Heights.
March 17. - The British evacuated Boston with 7,000 men, leaving their barracks standing, and stores to the amount of 30,000 pds.
June 7. - Richard Henry Lee made the first motion in Congress for declaring the colonies free."

(I'm going to stop there for today because the next entry starts on July 4th. Anybody guess what takes place on that date? I think even the current resident of the White House might know the answer to this skill-testing question.)... 👀

Science of Common Things (Today's entry from Prof. L.G. Gorton)

"Is air a good conductor of heat? No. (Ed. Note. Whyyyyy!!!) Why is a piece of ice longer in melting when wrapped in flannel? Because the flannel is a poor conductor, and keeps the heat from reaching the ice. Why do iron particles feel very cold in winter? Because iron is a good conductor, and takes the heat from the hand rapidly. Why is it painful to touch the tongue to a very cold iron? Because the heat is taken from the tongue so rapidly the tongue becomes frozen. (Ed. Note. Something I wish I'd read before I tried that on a cold railing at our home in Bagotville one winter. Of course, I was only five years old or so.  *sigh*)

The Birth Day Thing 10 November 1988

US Billboard #1 Single 10 November 1988

Kokomo by The Beach Boys. Great song by a great band. I saw them in Ottawa in the '90s and they were still excellent. What a great show! The Beach Boys formed in 1961, originally featuring the Wilson brothers, Carl, Brian and Dennis, with Mike Love and Al Jardine. Over their career the group released 29 studio albums and 71 singles. Kokomo was their only US #1 in the 80s. It was written by John Phillips, Mike Love, Scott McKenzie and Terry Melcher.

UK #1 Single 10 November 1988

Orinoco Flow by Enya. It may be elevator music but it's still a great song. She has a great voice and it becomes another instrument for the song. Enya is an Irish singer who started out in her families band, Clannad. She left in 1982 to pursue a solo career. Orinoco Flow was her second solo single and first #1 song. She wrote it along with Rona Ryan.

New York Times #1 Fiction Best Seller 10 November 1988

Queen of the Damned by Anne Rice. I did read this book long ago. I read the first three books in Anne Rice's Vampire Chronicles; Interview with a Vampire, The Vampire Lestat and Queen of the Damned, but after that I was kind of tired of her heavy style. I think I read one more of her books, The Body Thief and then I'd pretty well had it with her stories.

As I recall, and remember this was a few years back, as much as there was some action, there was also so much heavy description and the stories just got boring after awhile. I think it's probably worthwhile for someone to try the first book and judge for themselves. They do present an interesting portrait of the vampire story.

Pulitzer Prize Winner 1988

Beloved by Toni Morrison. I've heard of it of course, but I've not been tempted to read. I think it's one of those books (and I say it not having read the book) that is considered a 'must read' piece of literature. A New York Times survey of writers and literary critics listed it as the best work of American fiction from 1981 - 2006.

The story is set after the Civil War and tells the story of an escaped slave who escaped from Kentucky to Ohio in 1856. The book was also turned into a movie in 1988, starring Oprah Winfrey.

Nobel Prize Laureate 1988

Naguib Mahfouz (Egypt). Naguib Mahfouz was an Egyptian novelist who lived from 1911 - 2006 and is one of the first Arabic writers to explore existentialism. He was awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature as a writer 'who, through works rich in nuance - now clear-sightedly realistic, now evocatively ambiguous - has formed an Arabian narrative art that applies to all mankind'.

Hugo Award Winner 1988

The Uplift War by David Brin. In 1984, Brin won the Hugo for the Startide Rising, the 2nd book in the Earthclan series. The Uplift War is the third book in the series. I enjoyed this series very much. The different species from across the universe, the struggle of the Earthclan, humans, dolphins and apes to survive in this universe was so fascinating. I can't recommend the series more. I enjoyed every book immensely. The characters were all neat, the stories page turners. I think it's probably too hard to describe in a few words, but basically, the humans are trying to protect a planet,Garth, from another alien race, the Gubru.

The Edgar Award Winner 1988

Old Bones by Aaron Elkins. This is another book I've never read before. It is the 4th book in the Gideon Oliver mysteries. Aaron Elkins is an American mystery writer best known for his mystery series featuring forensic anthropologist, Gideon Oliver, aka 'the skeleton doctor.' He also wrote a few other series; Chris Norgren, Lee Ofsted, Alix London, and standalone novels.

There are 18 books in the Gideon Oliver series, starting in 1982, with the most recent published in 2016. (I think I might be checking out this series.)

Man Booker Prize Winner 1988

Oscar and Luanda by Peter Carey. Peter Carey is an Australian author who is one of only 4 authors to have one the Booker Prize twice. He has been writing since 1981 and his most recent book, Amnesia, came out in 2014.

Oscar and Lucinda tells the story of Oscar, an Anglican priest, and Lucinda, an Australian heiress who buys a glass factory.

In 1997, a film version was released, directed by Gillian Anderson and starring Ralph Fiennes and Cate Blanchett.

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