Monthly Archives: October 2009

Samhein

My mother always told me not to hope to win a prize on Halloween, so I wouldn’t be disappointed, but this never made too much sense to me because the disappointment, beginning as it did as soon as she started … Continue reading

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Mischief Night

English is such an odd language. Take all the collective nouns for animate objects, for example, like gaggle and troop and flock and drove and school and pride. Or take the word mischief, which comes from the Old French meschief, … Continue reading

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Eighty years ago, from the New York Times

Stocks Collapse In 16,410,030-share Day And the last sub-head? Bankers Believe Liquidation Now Has Run Its Course and Advise Purchases We just love those bankers.

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The Conversion of Constantine, Ohi Day, and The Philadelphia Experiment

Which of these stories would you be most likely to believe? In 313 the Roman emperor Constantine saw a cross above the sun and dreamed that Jesus told him to use it to defeat his enemies. The next day his … Continue reading

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Sylvia Plath’s birthday

I do not want much of a present, anyway, this year. After all I am alive only by accident. I would have killed myself gladly that time any possible way. Now there are these veils, shimmering like curtains, The diaphanous … Continue reading

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October at the Duc’s

Here are the Duc’s peasants again, tilling and sowing (it must be the hay they harvested in June). I wonder if he ever felt guilty, looking out his luxurious Paris window at all the work other people were doing for … Continue reading

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St. Crispin’s Day

This day is call’d the feast of Crispian. He that outlives this day, and comes safe home, Will stand a tip-toe when this day is nam’d, And rouse him at the name of Crispian. He that shall live this day, … Continue reading

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So you don’t have to listen…

There’s some site that calls itself Watching Fox, so you don’t have to,” or something like that. Well, since I love wordclouds so much, here is “Wordclouding Rush Limbaugh, so you don’t have to listen” (from yesterday’s radio show): Think … Continue reading

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Finding Scorpio

Unlike all the other signs of the zodiac, Scorpio really looks like a creepy little scorpion. He’s even got a red heart at the center, the bright star Antares. I wish I could pick him out, but whenever I look … Continue reading

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Cuban Missile Crisis

As we waited for the president’s speech that night in 1962, I wrote about Death (capitalizing it, teenager style) in my diary. “PRESIDENT GRAVE” was the sub-head in the New York Times, under the eight column headline. And the next … Continue reading

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