Archive for the ‘Language and religion’ Category

St. Martin des Poires

March 29, 2020

(Nothing actually crude, but a lot of mostly high-falutin’ sextalk that might give some people the fantods.)

In yesterday’s mail, a postcard from Ryan Tamares (a Stanford friend who is now socially but not postally distant from me) with this crate label from the 1920s and 1930s, featuring a character I’ll call the Bartlett Pear Kid:


(#1) We’ve been here before, in my 2/14/12 posting “Suggestive”, where I wrote: “The newsboy is hustling pears, but to modern eyes the label suggests something more salacious.”

I pursued this example further in a 6/14/16 posting “Crate labels”, which I’ll take up in a little while. But first the literally fabulous history of the Bartlett Pear Kid, who eventually became St. Martin des Poires, B.P.I.

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On Vadim Temkin’s surname

March 24, 2020

(A guest posting from Vadim Temkin, reproducing (without editing, so I can hear Vadim’s actual voice in all of this) a note in his Facebook notes yesterday about a section in my posting “Mourning Son” on  that same day)


Portrait of a thoughtful Vadim, by Sergey Zhupanov

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haram / treyf

February 5, 2020

(This posting discusses sexual matters in very plain terms and is deliberately and grossly offensive in several ways, so it’s not for kids, the sexually modest, or those who are uncomfortable with the crude mockery of public figures.)

Two events from yesterday, both involving Helmet Grabpussy. Leading to things that are unclean and dangerous, hence forbidden. Haram (not halal) in Islam, treyf (not kosher) in Judaism.

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Roses now, or roses later

January 29, 2020

On Sunday at the Palo Alto shapenote singing, we came to #340 in the 1991 Denson Sacred Harp, Odem (Second), with the chorus “Give me the roses while I live”. Counterbalanced, as it turns out, on the preceding page by #339, When I Am Gone, with the second verse “Plant you a rose that shall bloom o’er my grave, / When I am gone”.

Roses now, or roses later.

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A syncretic religious holiday

December 8, 2019

Recently posted on Facebook, this melding of the traditions of Judaism with the traditions of Jedi-ism for the holiday season, in French:


(#1) ‘May the light be with you’: the Jedi Master Yoda wields a lightsword menorah for Hanukkah (Fr. Hanoucca) — Happy Hanukkah! (Joyeuse fête de Hanoucca!)

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For all the saints

November 4, 2019

In Mexican tradition, November 1st is the central point in the Days of the Dead (October 31st through November 2nd), while in older Christian tradition it’s All Saints’ (or, as many would have it, Saints) Day. For some of us, there is specific music for the day: the magnificent processional hymn “For All the Saints”, sung to the Ralph Vaughan Williams tune Sine Nomine.


(#1) Fra Angelico, The Forerunners of Christ with Saints and Martyrs (from the 1420s, tempera on poplar wood) (from Wikipedia)

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Grammar and gardening

October 24, 2019

From Jack Hoeksema recently, a note about this 1650 painting in the National Gallery (London), “Allegory of Grammar”, by Laurent de La Hyre:


(#1) A young woman watering plants / Grammar, the first of the Seven Liberal Arts, personified, nurturing young minds

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Revisiting 34: sing out, Arnold!

September 9, 2019

From my comment on yesterday’s posting “Greetings”, about well-wishings for my 79th birthday:

[At yesterday’s Palo Alto shapenote singing] I did indeed lead both 79 and 272 [in the 1991 Denson revision of the Sacred Harp], and others chose suitably gloomy songs in my honor. Plus 285t Arnold, which begins “Come, let us join our friends above / That have obtained the prize; / And on the eagle wings of love / To joy celestial rise.” I somehow hadn’t noticed the “eagle wings” — potentially relevant because Arnold is etymologically ‘eagle-strong’ (English erne ‘sea-eagle’). Maybe just a fortunate accident, maybe on purpose; I’ll need to look at some sources.

I’ve now looked at sources, and, as I suspected, just a fortunate accident.

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Come lay your carnal weapons by

August 31, 2019

… an arresting line from the Sacred Harp (1991 Denson revision), #404, Youth Will Soon Be Gone, suggesting perhaps:

OUR CARNAL WEAPONS

 

(#1)

adj. carnal: relating to physical, especially sexual, needs and activities: carnal desire. (NOAD)

But in SH404 it comes from St. Paul, in 2 Corinthians 10:3-4 (KJV):

For though we walk in the flesh, we do not war after the flesh … For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal

And it all depends on what the compilers of the King James Version meant by carnal, which is evidently not what comes first to modern minds.

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A building guide for the perplexed

July 5, 2019

A Dale Coverly Speed Bump cartoon (from 10/17/17) that appeared in a Facebook posting in this form:


(#1) The philosopher’s eternal question, en français

I wasn’t aware that the strip came in a French version, but evidently it does; I still don’t know where and how it’s distributed (and I now wonder if there’s a Spanish version too, though I haven’t found one).

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