What Makes Edgar Allan Poe So Great? An Animated Video Explains

What Makes Edgar Allan Poe So Great? An Animated Video Explains:

In the short TED-Ed video … scripted by Poe scholar Scott Peeples of the College of Charleston, we are introduced to many of the qualities of form and style that make Poe distinctive, and that made him stand out among a crowd of popular horror writers of the time. There are his principles, elaborated in his essay, which state that one should be able to read a story in one sitting, and that every word in the story must count.

These rules produced what Poe called the “Unity of Effect,” which “goes far beyond fear. Poe’s stories use violence and horror to explore the paradoxes and mysteries of love, grief, and guilt, while resisting simple interpretations or clear moral messages. And while they often hint at supernatural elements, the true darkness they explore is the human mind.” … 

Josh Jones is a writer and musician based in Durham, NC. Follow him at @jdmagness

(Via Open Culture)

Poe is my go to. I reread the Collected Works every so often.

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TIL: Hurtling Over Hurdles

Hodgepodge, ladder up, and hurtling over hurdles:

Next, let’s get something straight: You “hurtle” over a “hurdle.” A surprising number of sports reports can’t make up their minds: A high school athlete wins the “300-meter hurtles,” but later stats list the boys and girls “100-mtr hurdles.” An award-winning dog displays her ability on an obstacle course “including hurtles, weave poles, tunnels and A-frames,” but her trainer “runs alongside her to guide her to the next hurdle.” You get the picture.

Though only one letter separates them, they don’t have a lot else in common. “Hurdle” is both a noun and a verb. The first “hurdle” was a temporary or portable fence to enclose sheep or cattle, and came into English about 725, the OED says. That fence, made of horizontal bars, became the racing “hurdle” around 1833. But in between, a “hurdle” was also “a kind of frame or sledge on which traitors used to be drawn through the streets to execution.” Its use as part of the punishment for high treason wasn’t abolished until 1870, the OED says, so there was a potential for a few years of mistaking what kind of “hurdle” one was getting into or over. The verb “hurdle” first appeared around 1600 and was associated with the fencing or the sledge; the form meaning to jump over the “hurdles” waited until the end of the 19th century.

“Hurtle” also has both noun and verb forms. The verb “hurtle” means to move quickly, sometimes with force. It arrived around 1250 with a meaning now considered obsolete: “To strike, dash, or knock (something against something else, or two things together).”

The first “hurtle” noun appeared about the same time as the verb “hurdle,” but meant a swelling on the skin or a variation of “whortle,” itself short for “whortleberry,” usages now considered obsolete, the OED says. Poetic and rhetorical uses of “hurtle” as a noun meant “The action or an act of hurtling; dashing together, collision, conflict; clashing sound.”

We rarely see “hurtle” as a noun, unless it’s misused for “hurdle.” And that happens enough that “hurdle/hurtle” are entered in the eggcorn database.

(Via Columbia Journalism Review)

Stopping to think about this, of course it makes sense. One hurtles through space, not hurdles – thought there are plenty of obstacles to overcome. Not employed as a sports writer I don’t believe I have bumped into this issue. Yet I cannot help but be a little bit fascinated.

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Indians blank Tigers; clinch 3rd straight AL Central title

Indians blank Tigers; clinch 3rd straight AL Central title:

the Cleveland Indians clinched their third straight AL Central title with a 15-0 blowout on Saturday of the Detroit Tigers, who made four errors and managed only two hits.

(Via Japan Today)

Seems about right.

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David Gilmour Talks About the Mysteries of His Famous Guitar Tone

David Gilmour Talks About the Mysteries of His Famous Guitar Tone:

The phrase “holy grail of tone” shows up a lot in the marketing of guitar gear, a promise of perfection that seems more than a little ironic. Perfect “tone”—that nebulous term used to describe the sound produced by an ideal combination of instrument, effects, amplifier, and settings—is ever sought but never seemingly found. Guitarists bicker and advise on forums, and religiously consult the gear guides of the pros, who often deign in magazines and videos to explain their own peculiar setups.

While more and more manufacturers are promising to recreate the tone of your favorite guitarist in digital simulations, true tone-ophiles will never accept anything less than the real thing. Pink Floyd’s David Gilmour, a guitarist whose tone is undeniably all his own, has inspired a cottage industry of fan-made videos that teach you how to achieve “The David Gilmour Sound.” But there’s no substitute for the source.

In the clip above from a BBC documentary, Gilmour vaguely discusses “the Floyd sound” and some of the techniques he uses to get his distinctive guitar tone. Every discussion of tone will include the admonishment that tone resides in the player’s fingers, not the gear. Gilmour suggests this initially. “It’s the tiniest little things,” he says, that “makes the guitar so personal. Add a hundred different tiny inflections to what you’re doing all the time. That’s what gives people their individual tone.”

It’s a true enough statement, but there are still ways to get close to the sound of Gilmour’s guitar setup, if not to actually play exactly like him. You can buy the gear he’s used over the years, or something approximating it, anyway. You can learn a few of his tricks—the bluesy bends and slides we know so well from his emotive solos. But unless you have the luxury of playing the kinds of huge stages, with huge volume, Gilmour plays, he says, you’ll never quite get it. Small amps in small rooms sound too cramped and artificial, he says.

And if you’re playing stages like that, you’ve probably discovered a holy grail of tone that’s all your own, and legions of fans are trying to sound like you.

via Laughing Squid

Related Content:

Watch David Gilmour Play the Songs of Syd Barrett, with the Help of David Bowie & Richard Wright

Pink Floyd’s David Gilmour Sings Shakespeare’s Sonnet 18

Italian Street Musician Plays Amazing Covers of Pink Floyd Songs, Right in Front of the Pantheon in Rome

Josh Jones is a writer and musician based in Durham, NC. Follow him at @jdmagness

(Via Open Culture)

I do not play music, so the whole thing is academic for me if still fascinating. Plus, it’s Pink Floyd, y’all!

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TIL: periphrastic

periphrasis • \puh-RIFF-ruh-sis\ • noun
1 : use of a longer phrasing in place of a possible shorter form of expression

2 : an instance of periphrasis

“There are countless passages of asinine periphrasis: ‘The accelerant enzymes her image infuses in Bob create a chemical cocktail he can only counter with self-preservational condescension.’ As these examples suggest, the book is only intermittently comprehensible.” — James Marriott, The Times (London), 7 Apr. 2018

“Literary translation is challenging, and tends to work best when the translator has recourse to the amplifying and telescoping powers of periphrasis, poetic license, and, if it comes to it, a discreet footnote here or there. Few of these tools are at the disposal of the cinematic translator.” — Elias Muhanna, The New Yorker, 30 May 2014

I need this on a T-shirt and visible at all times.

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[Eugene Volokh] Guberspace:

From Ted Byfield (@tbfld):

If [Norbert Wiener, who is credited with the term “cybernetics,”] had relied on Latin (gubernaculum) rather than Greek (κυβερνητική) to name we’d be in guberspace right now.

Thanks to Prof. Jonathan Weinberg for the pointer.

(Via The Volokh Conspiracy)

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The Mother of All Hot Wheels Tracks

The Mother of All Hot Wheels Tracks:

My eight year old would lose his mind if we had this Hot Wheels Track in our house.

(Via swissmiss)

My eight-year-old self would also lose his mind. My siblings and I played Hot Wheels often and with enthusiasm.

I vaguely remember borrowing track from friends when we lived in southwest Michigan. For one all too brief weekend we had an epic track.

Good times!

Hmmm. My current-year-old self kind of wants this now, too.

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Conan O’Brien arrives in Japan

Conan O’Brien arrives in Japan:

Ever since American late night talk show host Conan O’Brien announced he would be coming to Japan to visit Conan Town, we’ve been counting down the days to his arrival, eager to see what type of shenanigans he would get up to during his stay.

As it turns out, we didn’t have to wait long as Conan wasted no time in heading out to meet the locals on his first day in Japan, and his first port of call was Tokyo’s fashionable Harajuku district, where he made friends with the locals and filmed this short clip for his 28.5 million followers on Twitter.

Screen Shot 2018-09-04 at 7.10.21.png

Not long after posting this message to his fans, and to his friends in Tottori Prefecture’s Conan Town, who are bracing themselves for the approaching typhoon, the talk show host suddenly appeared in a more colorful outfit.

Screen Shot 2018-09-04 at 7.11.12.png

Aaron Bleyaert, known for playing video games on TV with Conan during the show’s “Clueless Gamer” segment, also films Facebook Live videos when Conan travels abroad. On Monday, he filmed a new video showing Conan and his team navigating Harajuku’s notoriously crowded Takeshita Street.

As well as rubbing shoulders with Japanese locals, Conan bumped into some fans from around the world during his stroll through the district.

Screen Shot 2018-09-04 at 7.12.53.png

After stopping to take photos with fans, Conan then met up with some of Harajuku’s most colorful fashionistas, who took him to the Kawaii Monster Cafe nearby.

▼ Pictured below, from left to right: Miochin, Conan, Sebastian Masuda, and Kanata.

Screen Shot 2018-09-04 at 7.13.42.png

While Conan was keen to immerse himself in Harajuku’s kawaii culture, this is just the start of many adventures for him and his team, who are due to visit the mayor of Hokue to collect their $3 trillion later this week. Let’s just hope the approaching typhoon doesn’t get in their way.

Source: Facebook/@teamcoco


© SoraNews24

(Via Japan Today)

I’ve been sharing this story with a friend & colleague. He gets a bigger kick out of the story than me, I think.

Check out the following for the history:

…  more stories from SoraNews24.

Mayor of Japan’s Conan Town to Conan O’Brien “If you want the money, come visit”【Video】

Conan O’Brien announces trip to Japan in negotiation over rural Tottori Prefecture’s Conan Town


Conan O’Brien lays out his case that anime’s Detective Conan is just a copy of him【Video】

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Podcast #437: Don’t Make Me Pull Over! A History of the Road Trip

Podcast #437: Don’t Make Me Pull Over! A History of the Road Trip:

If you grew up in America in the 1970s and 80s, a vacation with your family likely involved piling in a car with your parents and siblings and being stuck with them for eight or more hours on the open road with little other than each other to keep yourselves entertained and sane. Entire movies were made about The Great American Road Trip. Yet this world has slowly faded away without our hardly noticing thanks to cheaper airfare and advances in technology and convenience.

My guest today set out to document what he calls the Golden Age of Road Tripping before it vanishes from our collective memory. His name his Rich Ratay and in his book Don’t Make Me Pull Over! he walks readers through the history of the American family road trip. Today on the show, Rich and I discuss how it was actually bicycles that kickstarted America’s interstate highway system, when automotive road tripping really started taking off, and all the iconic businesses that built up around the nation’s new pastime, including Stuckey’s convenience stores, motels, and attractions like the world’s largest frying pan. Along the way, Rich shares stories from his family road trips growing up as a kid, particularly his memories of his dad taking on the role of leader, protector, and refueling-stop-minimizer during their expeditions. We end our conversation discussing the decline of the family road trip, what we miss out on when we take a plane to our destination, and why Millennial parents are ushering in the return of road trips to American culture.

This episode is definitely a nice drive down memory lane, and great one to listen to as you hit the open road.

Show Highlights

  • When and why did Americans start building cross-state and cross-country roads? 
  • What was the first transcontinental highway? 
  • When did American families start taking to the roads for vacations?
  • How was the road trip executed before gas stations, roadside restaurants, etc.?
  • How was that infrastructure implemented? 
  • The ways in which the interstate highway system fundamentally changed America
  • The rise and fall of Stuckey’s (and other roadside stands and diners) 
  • On running out of gas and driving on fumes 
  • The role of Mom and Dad in the dynamics of a road trip 
  • How roadside attractions sprung up 
  • How road trippers used to entertain themselves in the car 
  • What caused the decline of the great American road trip?
  • Why young millennial parents are bringing back the road trip 

(Via The Art of Manliness)

For my Japanese friends who marvel at my stories of road tripping with my family as a son and as a dad, check this show out.

I am disappointed there was not more mention of the Lincoln and Dixie Highways. Route 66 is OK, if you’re into that sort of thing.

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