Archive for September, 2015

Two notes from the obits

September 24, 2015

Two language-related notes from the death notices in my edition of the New York Times yesterday (they appeared on two different days in NYC): a word inappropriate in context; wine that speaks.

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Another medieval penis monster

September 24, 2015

From Rob Partington, another illustration from a medieval manuscript on the discarded image / discarding images site (devoted to medieval book painting): a dragon with a penis hat:

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Mark Mason, Matt Bauer, and Gay Porn Minus Gay Sex

September 23, 2015

(Much about gay porn, so there’s plenty about the male body and man-man sex, in very plain language, but (just barely) without the visuals. Use your judgment. There are also a few linguistic notes.)

It starts with postcards that Max Meredith Vasilatos has been sending me, including a couple with photographs by Matt Bauer (who was new to me): shots of gay pornstars that are clearly gay porn, and intended to be, but are also male art of some interest. Mark Mason in particular.

To come: material on Mason; then on Bauer and some subjects of his other than Mason; then a digression on what is almost surely a different  photographer named Matt Bauer. Mark Mason then led me to a vein of humor/criticism that I hadn’t realized existed: Gay Porn Minus Gay Sex, intended as a critique of bad gay porn: when you don’t have the visuals (the meat in the sandwich, as it were), you’re forced to attend to the acting and so will begin to appreciate the deficiences of the acting. (In particular, “Tales From Two Cities” Minus Gay Sex”; Mason appears in the cast of the original “Tales From Two Cities” of 1999.)

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Learning stuff

September 21, 2015

Passed on by John McIntyre, a Bloom County from some time ago about little kids and what they have to learn. And their mother and how she copes with their persistent inquiries:

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Amber 2

September 21, 2015

Following up on my posting on succinic acid (which led to some discussion of the substance amber), two amber items: a musical interlude, and material about senses of the noun amber.

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Participles of immediacy

September 21, 2015

Yesterday’s Doonesbury:

Not necessarily participles (PSP, PRP) of urgency, really, but something more like immediacy, conveying a sense of reporting on ongoing events, events that are happening right now. Hot news, on the scene.

The angle of your erection

September 21, 2015

News for penises.

On AZBlogX, a piece (“Be upstanding”) on variations in penises, in curvature and especially angle of incidence. Three illustrations, all of them X-rated (so not for the kiddies or the sexually modest).

Bonus: a burlesque of the pop standard “The Object of My Affection”. Title as above.

The Hairdresser Illuminati

September 20, 2015

Yesterday’s Dilbert has a wonderful concept in it — a shadowy organization that controls the world by manipulating the hairstyles of political candidates, as Dogbert explains it — with an even more wonderful name: the Hairdresser Illuminati:

Don’t know what the HI word on Donald Trump is.

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Back to Bayadère

September 20, 2015

From my crack team of ballet reporters, two clips of the Golden Idol variation from the ballet La Bayadère, which I wrote about in a 6/23 posting. Nothing of linguistic interest here; this is just for the pleasure of watching these men dance.

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Morning name: succinic acid

September 20, 2015

Yesterday’s morning name. And, no, I have no idea why it popped into my head.

From Wikipedia:

Succinic acid (… IUPAC systematic name: butanedioic acid; historically known as spirit of amber) … The name derives from Latin succinum, meaning amber, from which the acid may be obtained. … Spirit of amber was originally obtained from amber by pulverising and distilling it using a sand bath [now there are ways to synthesize the stuff]

… Succinic acid is used in the food and beverage industry, primarily as an acidity regulator. … It is also sold as a food additive and dietary supplement, and is generally recognized as safe for those uses by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.

A 11/11/14 posting here looks at amber (ultimately from trees), at ambergris (from whales), and at the liquidambar (or sweetgum) tree.

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