Saturday, June 11, 2016

In Olden Days a Glimpse of Stocking -- The Colonel Carries On #35

By Leanne Perrins and John the Escalator

Epigraph: “Some men chase butterflies; other men let butterflies come to them.” --Martin Cruz Smith

😇 "In England, everything not forbidden is allowed. In Germany, everything not allowed is forbidden. In France, everything is allowed, even what is forbidden. In Russia, everything is forbidden, even what is allowed. In North Korea, everything not forbidden is compulsory."

😇 We saw the Goodspeed production of “Anything Goes” last night. Terrific!

😇 For believers in the Zen of dishwashing, to the tune of “I’m a Girl Watcher”:

I’m a dishwasher
I’m a dishwasher
Wash the dish and dry
My, my, my.

😇 The following political cartoon won a contest in Europe for amateur political cartoonists.

😇 As an example of the sheer power of cartooning, that winner reminds me of another prize-winning cartoon from the 1930s. It showed a young man labeled “European Youth” passing a bordello. In the doorway, labeled “War,” stood a woman with a death’s head. She was saying, “Come on in, kid. I’ll treat you right. I knew your father.” In the light of what followed, it’s a tear-jerker.

😇 The story of the scorpion and the frog goes back to Aesop. Here it is in translation:

A scorpion and a frog meet on the bank of a stream and the
scorpion asks the frog to carry him across on its back. The
frog asks, "How do I know you won't sting me?" The scorpion
says, "Because if I do, I will die too."

The frog is satisfied, and they set out, but in midstream,
the scorpion stings the frog. The frog feels the onset of
paralysis and starts to sink, knowing they both will drown,
but has just enough time to gasp "Why?"

The scorpion replies: "It's my nature."

😇 A Jewish joke is one that a gentile doesn’t get and a Jew has already heard a better version of. Test case follows.

😇 There’s a Jewish Mother doll. You pull the string and it says, “Again with the string?”

😇 “‘Writing’ is the Latin of our times. The modern language of the people is video and sound.” --Lawrence Lessig, professor and political activist (b. 1961)

😇 Just a thought: Manners and grace should lubricate the nation’s civic life.

😇 In 1990, Helen Mirren stated in an interview that she is an atheist. In the August 2011 issue of Esquire, she said, “I am quite spiritual. I believed in fairies when I was a child. I still do sort of believe in the fairies. And the leprechauns. But I don’t believe in God.”

😇 Puts one in mind of Chesterton: "People who don't believe in God will believe in anything." Bit more rigour in the atheism, please, Dame Helen.

😇 Frans Timmermans, vice president of the European Commission, has stated that most of the people — his figure is 60 percent — who arrived in Europe last year came from countries where there is no conflict. They are not refugees but economic migrants.

😇 “I certainly had no idea that being your authentic self could get you as rich as I have become,” Oprah Winfrey said jokingly a few years ago. ”If I’d known that, I’d have tried it a lot earlier.”

😇 “Hypocrisy and deceit make our world go round. Hypocrisy is the bow that vice makes to virtue. Politeness is deceit, pretended caring. Would that every form of evil, if it can’t be abolished, could be yoked to the service of good.” --Roy Marshrigger

😇 “There is one thing I’ve always tried not to be, and that’s a roaring jackass.” --Bill Kristol. The arresting thing about that snippet is the image of a roaring jackass. Isn’t braying the usual epithet?

😇 A collection of African proverbs and sayings has some I can’t figure out. For example, “A coconut can’t compete with a stone” (Kenya). “Politeness is the key to the heart of the people” (Zimbabwe). “There is not a tree which has never been swayed by a breeze” (North Africa). Suggested interpretations welcome.

😇 Hamilton’s view was that the executive powers need to be unified in one person who can conduct diplomacy and act as commander-in-chief and as the chief law-enforcement officer with “decision, activity, secrecy, and dispatch.”

😇 One figure of speech is called “chiasmus” after the Greek letter chi (X) and is usually said to have the form a-b-b-a, as in “We must never negotiate out of fear, but let us never fear to negotiate” (negotiate, fear, fear, negotiate). I twisted Lord Balfour’s observation into an example: “Not much matters, and nothing matters much.”

😇 Donald Trump had a draft deferment, he said, for a “foot thing.” Short toes?

That is all.

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