Lunedi Lunacy

Aside from being a bit of a daddy – hey you choose your daddy figure I’ll choose mine – zefrank is a full fledged Internet star. His True Facts videos and Ted Talks are legend. And that voice – he’s the Morgan Freeman of the Youtube Generation. On one of his videos he does a commercial for a sponsor and I listened to it twice just to hear him say “audible” 15 times.

The True Facts remind me of the old Hinterland Who’s Who but with laughs and some of the strangest creatures on earth’s surface – and below for that matter.

Madagascar gave many of us a new insight into Lemurs – zefrank goes, perhaps unnecessarily beyond!

The word for January 6th is longest word (45 letters) in the OED and continues our volcanic theme: pneumonoultramicroscopicsilicovolcanoconiosis /ˌnjuːmənoʊˌʌltrəˌmaɪkrəˈskɒpɪkˌsɪlɪkoʊvɒlˌkeɪnoʊˌkoʊniˈoʊsɪs/: [mass noun]|
an artificial long word said to mean a lung disease caused by inhaling very fine ash and sand dust.
Invented in 1935 by Everett M. Smith, President of the National Puzzlers’ League.

Wisdom for a Dog Owner

I don’t normally go around borrowing things from other blogs but when Skip over at his eponymous House of Chaos posted this I felt I wanted to share it.

Yes its could be considered a bit on the schmaltzy side – hey I just got back from Vienna you want schmaltz???? – but they are ten sentences that every dog owner or perhaps more important any perspective animal owner should take into consideration.

And in response to a few queries – well okay one person asked – Nicky and Nora were ecstatic to see us but then they are ecstatic to see anyone holding a biscuit in their hand!

01 febbraio – Santa Brigida d’Irlanda

Painterly Poetry and Dog(gerel)

The second visit to the Bronzino exhibition at the Palazzo Strozzi was as delightful as the first. It was a chance to examine closer many of the paintings and related works and to read, more extensively, the fine explanations (in Italian and English) that put the works in context. An added feature was the burlesque verses in the style of Bronzino, again in both Italian and English. As a member of the Academia the painter was expected to excel in more than one of the arts. He was a writer of poetry – serious, burlesque, doggerel and limerick poetry all of which circulated among his friends and some of which was published. The exhibition included a display of his literary works including this page, at the right, from a book of his burlesque poems.

In the spirit of this really remarkable exhibition curators Carlo Falciani and Antonio Natali – to whom be all honour and glory! – have included burlesque verses for many of the works created by Italian writer-poet-actor Roberto Piumini who is known for his modern takes on mythological subjects. They then were used as inspiration by Konrad Eisenbichler, a well-known teacher of Renaissance studies at the University of Toronto, to write English poems in the same spirit.

Here is the first of a selection I’ll post over the next few days gleaned from their book that accompanies the exhibition: Cerchi nei QUADRI/Hide AND Seek* along with the picture the verses accompany. (Remember a left click will enlarge both Bartolomeo and his pup!)

Portrait of Bartolomeo Panciaticchi
(1541-5) oil on canvas
Galleria degli Uffizi

Bartolomeo, d’acccordo, tu leggevi
tranquillament quel tu libricino
pieno di cose sagge, e riflettevi
nel bel silenso del tu balconino.

Lui ha abbaiato, sì, ma solamente
perché voleva un po’ farsi notare,
perché, lo sai, è fedele e intelligente,
ma ha voglia di muoversi, di andare …

Tu invece l’hai sgridato, e lui è fuggito,
e adesso è lì, stordito di dolore,
tristissimo, nascosto, impaurito …
Su, dagli una carezza, buon signore!

Detail of sorrowful pup!

Bartolemo, I know you were
Constantly reading a small tome
(A learned text, if I don’t err)
On your fine balcony at home,

When all at once he barked because
He wished to tell you he was there
And that, perhaps, his restless paws
needed to move and go somewhere.

You scowled at him and told him: “Hush!”
So now he sits, forlorn and sad,
With ears down low, his face a blush.
Give him a pat and make him glad!

* Cherci nei Quadri/Hide and Seek
Roberto Piumini – Konrad Eisenbichler
2010 Fondazione Palazzo Strozzi, Firenze
2010 Alias, Firenze
It may be purchased through their on-line store.

15 gennaio – San Macario il Vecchio

Lunedi Lunacy

Apparently these two churches stand across the road from each other.

I guess this is what they meant by “interfaith dialogue” on dogma!

Postscript: David’s comment led me to a bit of internet checking and this is what I found out about the “conflict” between the two churches.

Many thanks to one of my oldest friends – i.e. the friend I have known the longest not the oldest… oh hell you know what I mean – Vicki. Baci cara!
16 novembre – Santa Gertrude di Helfta detta La Grande