Musical developments

March 30, 2008 at 1:43 pm | Posted in music | 1 Comment

I have my library from A – S restored.  Recently added, Rush, Sting, etc.  Next up, Talking Heads!

Words, words, words.

March 28, 2008 at 8:26 am | Posted in words | 2 Comments

I love finding origins of idioms!


In the case of “from the get-go,” … … the phrase first appeared in the mid-1960s in
African-American slang, and “get-go” is simply a transformation of the verbal phrase “get going”
into a noun form meaning “the starting point, the beginning.” Subsequent mutations include “from
the git-go” and “from the get (or git).”
… …
The phrase “from the word go,” meaning exactly the same thing, is an American invention dating
safely back to 1834, and its first use in print is attributed to none other than Davy Crockett (“I
was … well pleased with her from the word go.”).

Curious. 🙂

Uncle Joe

March 26, 2008 at 7:20 am | Posted in books, religion | 10 Comments

I’ve been doing a bit of pleasure reading this spring break, and I came across this piece of wisdom from Uncle Joe.

“[In] mythology — if you have a mythology in which the metaphor for the mystery is the father, you are going to have a different set of signals from what you would have if the metaphor for the wisdom and mystery of the world were the mother. And they are two perfectly good metaphors. Neither one is a fact. These are metaphors. It is as though the universe were my father. It is as though the universe were my mother. Jesus says, ‘No one gets to the father but by me.’ The father that he was talking about was the biblical father. It might be that you can get to the father only by way of Jesus. On the other hand, suppose you are going by way of the mother. There you might prefer Kali, and the hymns to the goddess, and so forth. That is simply another way to get to the mystery of your life. You must understand that each religion is a kind of software that has its own set of signals and will work.”

— Joseph Campbell, The Power Of Myth

Spring Break

March 24, 2008 at 6:37 am | Posted in house, life | 5 Comments

Time to do stuff around the house!  New chain for the toilet handle, new spring for the garage door, scheduled maintenance on the car …

Forward Through Backwards Time

March 19, 2008 at 5:59 pm | Posted in quirky, Vlogs | Leave a comment

This is a nice, creative, short video. Kind of along the lines of the “screw with the public’s collective brain” bunch of projects that have come out recently. Like when Improv Everywhere organized over 200 people to freeze in the middle of Grand Central Station for 5 solid minutes. Now THAT’S a video worth watching.

Happy Pi Day!

March 14, 2008 at 8:02 am | Posted in life, math | Leave a comment

It’s Pi Day, everybody! 3.14 = March 14th. Celebrate the world’s favorite irrational number by having some pie. Pizza pies are ok, too. You can even calculate their circumference if you know the diameter, just multiply by … you guessed it, pi!

Here’s a website about pi day with cool facts, quotes, and more. One of my favorite quotes is from a mathematician named Leopold Kronecker, “What good is your beautiful investigation regarding pi? Why study such problems, since irrational numbers do not exist?” Even the best of us get it wrong sometimes.

This site has a Pi Day special 12 by 12 sudoku puzzle using the first 12 digits of pi.

YouTube has some great videos, too. Here’s one.

It’s also my second wedding anniversary! And the 8th anniversary of meeting my future wife. Happy anniversary, Jenny! I love you!

The Falkirk Wheel

March 11, 2008 at 9:13 am | Posted in technology | 8 Comments

Wow. This is some cool stuff. The Falkirk Wheel is a engineering feat in Scotland that essentially replaces locks to move large boats up and down in elevation while traveling rivers. Here’s a video.

Why Blog?

March 11, 2008 at 7:36 am | Posted in Uncategorized | 1 Comment

Because it’s fun!

Snow day

March 5, 2008 at 11:03 am | Posted in weather | Leave a comment

Thank goodness!  SUNY Potsdam cancels classes so incredibly seldom, even in weather that would have much of the rest of the country running for cover.  Additionally, some of our students travel quite a distance; one has to drive an hour and a half one way, and that’s on a sunny day!  So those commuting from over an hour away have already missed quite a few days this semester.  They would have missed today anyway, so at least they didn’t *really* miss a day.

And I get a day off!

Speaking of music and renaissance faires …

March 2, 2008 at 1:21 pm | Posted in festivals, local, music | 5 Comments

Yesterday I went to the Potsdam museum to see a performance by Stan Ransom, a folk musician who lives near Plattsburgh, New York. The focus of the performance was the hammered dulcimer, a percussive, melodic instrument with a long and rich history. It is often played at renaissance festivals, and it was at the NY Renaissance Festival that I first remember hearing, and falling in love with, the sound of the hammered dulcimer.

Over the years, I have entertained the idea that I might one day learn to play the hammered dulcimer. I came dangerously close at times, but I never picked up a hammer before yesterday. It felt really good. Stan told me of a festival in the Adirondacks, the Northeast Dulcimer Symposium, and it just sounds wonderful. I probably won’t try to pick it up until next year, but when I’m ready to take the leap, it seems very doable. Besides, a hammered dulcimer would cost about $500, and I have to save up. I know they can cost much more than that, but I won’t spend more than that for my first one. As long as it sounds good and has a few octaves, I’d be happy. Also, I just started TKD, and I don’t want too many new projects at once.

But it’s still very exciting!

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