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Posts from May 2013

Shecada do sing

ShecadaPaulo's Shecada; and where are the nightcrawlers? / "they are very musical in their tastes, and have wings which are arranged slantwise, like the roof of a house" / circa spring 2013

Now, the cicadas are, almost without Exception, musical. But their song is produced exclusively by the male insects, who are provided for the purpose with a curious resonant, drum-like instrument. It consists of a cavity with a stretched membrane, whose vibration, controlled by muscles, sets up the familiar chirping or stridulating noise so well known to all who have lived in Italy. In warm sunshine these insect vocalists keep up a continuous concert of sweet sounds, intended no doubt to attract the females. Resonators in the body increase the volume of the note, and make it carry further; we had one cicada in our house in Jamaica which sang so loud that we always knew it as the prima donna. We were wrong in the gender, I admit: we ought rather to have said the first tenor; for the females have no song: a fact much commented upon by the malicious Greek poet— doubtless a married man, tied to a loquacious Athenian lady :—

Happy the cicadas' lives
Since they all have voiceless wives.

~ The Strand Magazine, Volume 18, 1899

We were young then

WhenwewereyoungYoung at heart / September 2012

"I remember not long ago hearing Picasso and Gertrude Stein talking about various things that had happened at that time, one of them said but all that could not have happened in that one year, oh said the other, my dear you forget we were young then and we did a great deal in a year."

~ from The Autobiography of Alice B. Toklas by Gertrude Stein

The zigzag man

Twinkies_tonicBottles of Twinkie's Tonic, The Hot Sauce Cure-All / Dec. 2009

... Although the Missonis designed as a couple, Mr. Missoni, known as Tai, was the technician, plotting patterns that were inspired by Guatemalan, Aztec and Incan textiles or Abstract, Impressionist and Art Deco paintings. He designed on graph paper, mapping out shapes with startling combinations: primary colors that did battle with earth tones, and polka dots that chased whirling stripes through kaleidoscopic prisms. Mr. Missoni once wrote that he created a chromatic harmony by adding a third color to two clashing ones.

“Color?” he wrote. “What can I say? I like comparing color to music: Only seven notes and yet innumerable melodies have been composed with those seven notes. How many basic colors are there? I don’t remember exactly, seven perhaps, like the notes of the scale, but how many tones or shades does each color have? An infinite number, just as always endless are the hues and nuances composing a work of art.” (NYTimes story on the passing of 92-year-old designer Ottavio Missoni who was born in Dubrovnik)

Creative with your thoughts

Velveteen_coatIn progress, velveteen jacket with collar and 3/4 sleeves (Simplicity 1943), lined with an old silk shirt (cut off collar and extra length; left the handy buttoned pocket) / May 2013

"... In the mean time, may you all continue to be creative with your thoughts if not with your hands."

~ Brandon Mably