1. AOTWs: All drivers (except me!) on US 23, southbound from Hartland, Michigan, Friday, April 15, 2016, 6:30-7:30 a.m. (See previous post for some detail.)
2. Funny moment: When Joyce and I were heading into the movies in Kent last night, she looked up at the marquee to see what other films were playing, Then she asked me: "What's Popcorn about?" Then she realized ... as did I (I was initially confused, too) ... that the marquee was merely stating the obvious: Popcorn is for sale inside!
3. Last night we were in Kent to see Criminal, a thriller with Ryan Reynolds (who makes a speedy exit), Kevin Costner (the best I've ever seen him), Gary Oldman, and Tommy Lee Jones. (Link to trailer.) The Fate of the World is at stake (as usual), and some Bad Guys kill a a key agent (Reynolds), whose knowledge is crucial to the Fate of the World. So ... the CIA contacts a scientist/doctor (Jones), who has figured out how to implant the memories of dead mice into the frontal lobes of living ones. Might as well try it on a person--Costner, who plays an amoral, vicious criminal now in maximum security. And so it goes ... A Little Girl also participates in altering the Fate of the World.
4. I finished a book this week, another title about Jack London. As I've posted here the past few days, I was in Hartland, Michigan, earlier this week doing some presentations on London and The Call of the Wild for middle school students--and for the community--as part of their participation in The Big Read, a program sponsored by the National Endowment for the Arts. So ... time to catch up on a couple of recent London books I'd not yet gotten around to reading. One was Cecelia Tichi's Jack London: A Writer's Fight for a Better America (Univ. of N. Carolina Pr., 2015), a book in which Tichi explains and analyzes London's social ideas in the context of his biography and writing. So ... we learn about the effects of his modest (or worse) economic childhood, his time in the Erie County Penitentiary (1894, not 1984, as it says on p. 25), his travels (and the consequent effects), his ranching, etc. Because it's a scholarly book (and will appeal mostly to London scholars and committed fans), you will not see it atop any bestseller list. But it is a very useful concentration of information about an aspect of his life that indeed affected many other aspects of that remarkable life.
I also re-read my own YA book--Jack London: A Biography (Scholastic, 1997)--only because I'd not had any recent occasions to talk about London's life, and I wanted a quick "refresher" on same since I was going to be doing eight presentations about him in Hartland. (Glad I did, too--the train of detail came roaring back into my depot.)
5. Tomorrow, I get to begin preparation for one of Life's Pleasures: a colonoscopy! (I've had one previously--eleven years ago; you're supposed to have them every ten; sue me.) Tomorrow, I'll be fasting all day (clear liquids + coffee only); then, tomorrow evening I commence drinking Hell's Potion, whose effect is ... well, you can imagine (or, in my case, remember). I have the procedure at 9 a.m. on Tuesday up at the University Hospitals facility in Bainbridge, across from the Chagrin Cinema. Be assured: I will post no selfies!
I remember nothing about the actual procedure last time: They wheeled me in; I woke up; it was over. I was grateful--very grateful--to have no subsequent flashbacks ... believe me.
6. Last Words: Some words from my various word-a-day sites on the Internet:
- rhyparographer, n. From the OED: A person who paints or writes about distasteful or sordid subjects.Etymology:A borrowing from Latin, combined with an English element. Etymons: Latin rhyparographos, -er suffix1. < classical Latin rhyparographos painter of low or sordid subjects (see rhyparograph n.) + -er suffix1; compare -grapher comb. form.1656 T. Blount Glossographia, Rhyparographer..Ryparographer.1676 E. Coles Eng. Dict., Rhyparographer, a writer (or painter) of base trifles.1694 P. A. Motteux in tr. Rabelais 5th Bk. Wks. Prol. sig. A6v, That [office] of Puny Riparographer, or Riffraff-scribler of the Sect of Pyrricus.1885 Sat. Rev. 23 May 675 Our bodies..are ‘vile’, and he or she who paints them is a Rhyparographer.1891 F. W. Farrar Darkness & Dawn II. lvii. 242 The rhyparographer Pyroeicus.1924 J. B. Cabell Straws & Prayer-bks. i. 40 Mr. Theodore Dreiser and Mr. Sinclair Lewis, who can derive..comfort from considering persons even less pleasantly situated than themselves..and so turn rhyparographer, and write ‘realism’.1958 N. J. Jacobs Naming-day in Eden xi. 78 When he fell and lay groveling in the dust, rundown and half crushed, these rhyparographers (portrayers of low life) detect eccentricities and shortcomings.1998 Renaissance Q. 51 262 A matching discussion of Aertsen as a ‘Rhyparographer’, that is, a practitioner of the paradoxical encomium in his still-life paintings.
- adlubescence, n. (OED)Pleasure, delight. (rare)Etymology:A borrowing from Latin. Etymon: Latin adlubescentia. < post-classical Latin adlubescentia (1543 or earlier) < classical Latin adlubēscent-, adlubēscēns, present participle of adlubēscere (also allubēscere) to be pleasing, gratify ( < ad ad- prefix + lubet (also libet) it pleases (see libitude n.) + -ēscere -esce suffix) + -ia -y suffix3; compare -ence suffix. Compare allubescency n.1656 W. Charleton tr. Epicurus's Morals vii. 38 That is..truly Evill, which produceth pain, as sincere, so also without any Pleasure or Allubescence to succeed upon it.1673 A. Marvell Rehearsal Transpros'd ii. 102 Such an expansion of heart, such an adlubescence of mind..that betwixt Joy and Love he could scarce restrain from kissing it.1977 S. K. Sperling Poplollies & Bellibones 78 Adlubesence means pleasure or delight. If consummate adlubescence is your only quest you might spurn the little pleasures of life and [etc.].1977 Verbatim Dec. 8/1 Your adlubescence at this romp through should be undiminished.1981 New Rec. Feb. 2/2 This album..will give you many hours of adlubescence. [Note] I am showing off. The word is an off-beat one meaning pleasure, delight.
- Fuliginous \fyoo-LIJ-uh-nuhs\ adjective (dictionary.com)1. sooty; smoky: the fuliginous air hanging over an industrial city.2. of the color of soot, as dark gray, dull brown, black, etc.QuotesEach morning of her life, the City had been filmed in this airborne soot, a fuliginous mist that corroded even iron.-- Mary Novik, Conceit, 2007