How much more expressive and poignant can you get?
Sunday, April 30, 2006
How much more expressive and poignant can you get?
Saturday, April 29, 2006
Friday, April 28, 2006
I heard this piece of popular wisdom today, on the Jeremy Vine show, for the first time (apparently it's been around for a long time).
Thursday, April 27, 2006
The world's about to break.
The world's about to chuck out all its light
and stuff us in the chokepit of its dark,
That black and fat suffocated place
Where we will kill or die or dance or weep
Or scream of whine or squeak like mice
To renegotiate our starting price.
poem by Harold Pinter
However, selfish as I am, if I had no children I probably wouldn't give a damn ...
Wednesday, April 26, 2006
Cherie: I do understand your problem ! I just wish I had your means.
Posted by Claudia at 1:27 am
Tuesday, April 25, 2006
Today Portugal commemorates its Liberty Day: 32 years ago, the Carnation Revolution put an end to 40 years of authoritarian dictatorship in the country and opened the door to democracy. I was a child but I still remember it pretty well, especially because there was no school for a couple of days (my school was right next to the Parliament Palace) and all the grownups seemed to behave in a particularly strange way, which is never reassuring for a 6 year-old child.
Monday, April 24, 2006
Strange to know nothing, never to be sure
Of what is true or right or real,
But forced to qualify or so I feel,
Or Well, it does seem so:
Someone must know.
Strange to be ignorant of the way things work:
Their skill at finding what they need,
Their sense of shape, and punctual spread of seed,
And willingness to change;
Yes, it is strange,
Even to wear such knowledge - for our flesh
Surrounds us with its own decisions -
And yet spend all our life on imprecisions,
That when we start to die
Have no idea why.
poem by Philip Larkin
In 1882 Chabrier visited Spain with his wife and family, and was enchanted by the energy of Iberian music. He described the dancers at the café concerts to a friend: "If you could see them wiggle, unjoint their hips, contort, I believe you would not want to get away! At Malaga I was compelled to take my wife away…" Returning to Paris, he promised the conductor Charles Lamoureux he would write a Spanish-themed piece that would cause audience members to leap up and embrace each other. Though the first performance in 1883 may not have ended in a group hug, the piece did catch fire with the public, and its themes were so memorable that the main melody was a hit again 73 years later in a 1956 ditty called "Hot Diggity" (with the chorus: "oh hot diggity, dog ziggity, boom what you do to me").
Friday, April 21, 2006
Posted by Claudia at 5:59 pm
Thursday, April 20, 2006
Tuesday, April 18, 2006
Monday, April 17, 2006
Sunday, April 16, 2006
E, the multiplier, is the emotion/enthusiasm with which we live.
M means maintenance or attention to detail. See the tree and not the forest. Focus on the essential and not on the important.
B is for the quest for happiness. The quest and the anticipation bring more happiness than the attainment in itself.
P stands for Personal Relationships
R stands for the reducing factors:
- Not being able to "unlearn" or not being able of getting rid of pre-concepts.
- Basing decision on the group's memory instead of one's experience.
- Interfering with automated psychological processes, trying to manipulate the feelings and reactions.
- Having fear.
C stands for genetic and other inherited factors.
Now, GO AND BE HAPPY !!!Taken from my homonym's blog.
A good excuse for taking another lowsy quiz: the What country are you ? quiz.
You're a charitable country with a soft spot for mounties. Don't plan on invading anyone anytime soon, but be happy--life's good and people everywhere enjoy a welfare state.
Vous êtes un pays charitable avec un endroit doux pour mounties. Pas le projet sur envahir n'importe qui n'importe quand bientôt, mais être heureux -- vie bonne et gens apprécient partout un Etat-providence.
For your information, the possible countries in this test include: Haiti, North Korea, Albania, Russia, Vietnam, Turkey, Poland, India, Singapore, China, The Netherlands, United Kingdom, Libya, Tanzania, East Timor, Lithuania, Indonesia, Iran, Canada, Israel, Sweden, Australia, Germany, or the United States of America.
Posted by Claudia at 1:11 am
Occasionally, people unfamiliar with the work have been known to leave after this movement, assuming this to be the end of the oratorio when this is, as noted above, merely the conclusion of the second of the three parts.
Thursday, April 13, 2006
Wednesday, April 12, 2006
A habit formed to get necessaries --
Is nearly always losing, or going without.
This loss of interest, hair, and enterprise --
Ah, if the game were poker, yes,
You might discard them, draw a full house!
But it's chess.
And once you have walked the length of your mind, what
You command is clear as a lading-list.
Anything else must not, for you, be thought
And what's the profit? Only that, in time,
We half-identify the blind impress
All our behavings bear, may trace it home.
But to confess,
On that green evening when our death begins,
Just what it was, is hardly satisfying,
Since it applied only to one man once,
And that one dying.
poem by Philip Larkin
Tuesday, April 11, 2006
Why not test your own knowledge of little know facts about Elizabeth II by taking this Guardian quiz: How much do you know about the Queen?
Monday, April 10, 2006
The original title of the sonata is Sonata Quasi una fantasia (in Italian, "almost a fantasy"). The popular title of Moonlight Sonata didn’t come about until several years after Beethoven’s death: in 1836, German music critic, Ludwig Rellstab wrote that the sonata reminded him of the reflected moonlight off Lake Lucerne and, since then, Moonlight Sonata has remained the “official” unofficial title of this masterpiece.
Beethoven composed the sonata in 1801 and dedicated it to Countess Giulietta Guicciardi, a pupil of his, with whom he was in love. It is believed that Beethoven then proposed to her; yet, although she was willing, forbiddance by one of her parents prevented the two from marrying. He was 30 and she was 17.
“Upon a proposal from the Prime Minister and after having heard the presidents of the parliamentary groups and the persons in charge for the majority, the President of the Republic has decided to replace article 8 of the law on the equal opportunity [the CPE] with a device in favour of the professional insertion of the young people in difficulty [getting disadvantaged young people into work]”, reads the official statement of the presidency.
Posted by Claudia at 12:54 pm
Sunday, April 09, 2006
It feels like we're back in February all over again: it's been a cold, dark afternoon and giant snowflakes are falling from the sky! It's the Easter Holidays for the kids, though, and out we went to see Ice Age 2: The meltdown. They loved it; yes, THEY did.
Posted by Claudia at 4:15 pm
Saturday, April 08, 2006
Posted by Claudia at 8:31 pm
"For me, pressure is bird flu; I am feeling a lot of pressure with the swan in Scotland," revealed Mourinho when asked about the Manchester United manager's attempts to turn the psychological screws on Stamford Bridge. Naturally, the reaction of his audience was dismissive.
"I am serious. You are laughing but I am serious. I am more scared of the bird flu than football. What is football compared with life? A swan with bird flu, for me, that is the drama of the last two days. I have to buy some masks and stuff. I am serious. Maybe for my team as well."
from the Guardian
Friday, April 07, 2006
Michael Baigent and Richard Leigh had sued publishers Random House claiming that Mr Brown's book "appropriated the architecture" of their book, The Holy Blood And The Holy Grail, which was published in 1982 by the same publishing house.
The claimants said Mr Brown - whose book has made him the highest-paid author in history - had "hijacked" and "exploited" their book, which took them five years to create.
But in his ruling this afternoon at the high court in London following a three-week trial, Mr Justice Peter Smith said the claim for copyright infringement had "failed and is dismissed".
The claimants were ordered to pay 85% of Random House's legal costs, which are estimated at nearly £1.3m, with an interim payment of £350,000 to be made by May 5.
The judge said that a comparison of the language in The Holy Blood And The Holy Grail and The Da Vinvi Code did show some limited copying of the text.
"However this is not alleged to be a copyright infringement ... so does not assist the claimants. Such copying cannot amount to substantial copying of the text of The Holy Blood And The Holy Grail and the claimants have never said it does," Mr Justice Smith said.
If successful, the copyright case could have had huge ramifications for the publishing industry. Random House said the ruling "ensures that novelists remain free to draw in ideas and historical research".
The reclusive millionaire author from the US, who drew crowds of fans to the court when he gave evidence for three days last month, said he was "pleased" with the ruling personally and also "as a novelist".
taken from the Guardian
Thursday, April 06, 2006
Sleep, sleep, my beloved,
without worry, without fear,
although my soul does not sleep,
although I do not rest.
Sleep, sleep, and in the night
may your whispers be softer
than a leaf of grass,
or the silken fleece of lambs.
May my flesh slumber in you,
my worry, my trembling.
In you, may my eyes close
and my heart sleep.
poem by Gabriela Mistral
Heart of Darkness by Joseph Conrad
Crime and Punishment by Fyodor Dostoevsky
The Great Gatsby by F Scott Fitzgerald
Brighton Rock by Graham Greene
Catch 22 by Joseph Heller
High Fidelity by Nick Hornby
Ulysses by James Joyce
Metamorphosis by Franz Kafka
The Book of Laughter and Forgetting by Milan Kundera
To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee
One Hundred Years of Solitude by Gabriel Garcia Marquez
Lolita by Vladimir Nabokov
1984 by George Orwell
The Catcher in the Rye by JD Salinger
The Grapes of Wrath by John Steinbeck
The Hobbit by JRR Tolkien
The Lord of the Rings by JRR Tolkien
The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn by Mark Twain
Slaughterhouse Five by Kurt Vonnegut
Sunday, April 02, 2006
Your eyes drink of me,
Love makes them shine,
Your eyes that lean
So close to mine.
We have long been lovers,
We know the range
Of each other's moods
And how they change;
But when we look
At each other so
Then we feel
How little we know;
The spirit eludes us,
Timid and free—
Can I ever know you
Or you know me?
poem by Sara Teasdale
Saturday, April 01, 2006
J'avais vingt ans
Je caressais le temps
Et jouais de la vie
Comme on joue de l'amour
Et je vivais la nuit
Sans compter sur mes jours
Qui fuyaient dans le temps
J'ai fait tant de projets
Qui sont restés en l'air
J'ai fondé tant d'espoirs
Qui se sont envolés
Que je reste perdu
Ne sachant où aller
Les yeux cherchant le ciel
Mais le cœur mis en terre
J'avais vingt ans
Je gaspillais le temps
En croyant l'arrêter
Et pour le retenir
Même le devancer
Je n'ai fait que courir
Et me suis essoufflé
Ignorant le passé
Conjuguant au futur
Je précédais de moi
Et donnais mon avis
Que je voulais le bon
Pour critiquer le monde
J'avais vingt ans
Mais j'ai perdu mon temps
A faire des folies
Qui ne me laissent au fond
Rien de vraiment précis
Que quelques rides au front
Et la peur de l'ennui
Car mes amours sont mortes
Avant que d'exister
Mes amis sont partis
Et ne reviendront pas
Par ma faute j'ai fait
Le vide autour de moi
Et j'ai gâché ma vie
Et mes jeunes années
Du meilleur et du pire
En jetant le meilleur
J'ai figé mes sourires
Et j'ai glacé mes pleurs
Où sont-ils à présent
A présent mes vingt ans?
...for a long while.
All of us were (or still are) ill and a couple of big scares, healthwise, set me thinking about reorganizing some aspects of my life or at least making some contingency plans.
The news from overseas aren't so great either and the moral is low all around.
I wish I could do a lot more than I do, but I already feel overwhelmed as it is ...
Shouldn't Spring have brung sunnier and happier days ?