Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category

Aux armes, citoyens! Aux barricades!

July 14, 2014

Aux armes, citoyens! Aux barricades!

It’s July 14th, La Fête Nationale, Bastille Day, the holiday commemorating this date in 1789 when crowds stormed the Bastille Saint-Antoine prison, an event leading to the founding of the French Republic. Today La République faces a greater, more insidious threat than the monarchy of Louis XVI.

Last summer French hypermarchés began hyping a new beverage to innocent jeunes: A wine that tastes like Coca-Cola. The icebox wine cooler called Rouge Sucette (Red Lollipop), produced by Haussmann Famille/Châteaux en Bordeaux, is 75 per cent wine with sugar, water, and cola flavoring added. Quelle horreur!

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Mirabile Dictu! Germany Wins the World Cup!

July 13, 2014

Mirabile Dictu! Germany Wins the World Cup!

Die deutsche Fußballnationalmannschaft, the German national football team, has won the 2014 World Cup, defeating Argentina 1 – 0.

At the Vatican, Argentina’s Pope Francis will now retire and Germany’s Pope Benedict XVI will return to the Papal throne for the next four years. Consult L’Osservatore Romano for details.

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Image by Mike Licht. Download a copy here. Creative Commons license; credit Mike Licht, NotionsCapital.com

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July 2nd: Independence Day

July 2, 2014

July 2nd: Independence Day

The Second of July, 1776, will be the most memorable Epocha, in the History of America. I am apt to believe it will be celebrated, by succeeding Generations, as the great anniversary Festival.” — John Adams

On July 2, 1776 the Second Continental Congress approved the resolution to declare the United Colonies a sovereign nation, independent of the British Empire.

More:

“Why July 2 is really America’s independence day,” Valerie Strauss, Washington Post

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Image (“Declaration Drafting Committee, after Jean Leon Gerome Ferris”) by Mike Licht. Download a copy here. Creative Commons license; credit Mike Licht, NotionsCapital.com

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Back Home Again in Indiana

June 26, 2014

Back Home Again In Indiana

U.S. District Court Judge Richard L. Young ruled Wednesday that Indiana’s state law banning same-sex couples from marrying or having their marriages from other states recognized is unconstitutional. Indiana Attorney General Greg Zoeller filed an emergency motion to stay the ruling pending an appeal, but the ruling took effect immediately and Hoosier couples rushed to marry.

We think it’s time to cue Jim Nabors:

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Cargo Bikes

June 7, 2014

Cargo Bikes

“A national campaign to reclaim the bicycle’s utilitarian role in transportation is coming to Brattleboro this weekend.

Environmentalists and public health advocates are seeking to replace the traditional family station wagon with so-called cargobikes – large bikes used to carry children, groceries and other onboard loads during daily commutes.

Some of these bicycles include front-loaded baskets and trailer-like cargo space in the rear. Other pedal- and solar-powered bikes include headlights, windshields, overhead protection, an electric motor and enough space to carry hundreds of pounds of cargo.”

– “Cargobikes Touted as Alternative Transportation,” John Herrick, VTDigger

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Image (Cargo Bike on Capitol Hill) by Mike Licht. Download a copy here . Creative Commons license; credit Mike Licht, NotionsCapital.com

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June 4, 1989

June 4, 2014

June 4, 1989

Tiananmen Square, Beijing, China, 1989.

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Johnny Cash

May 8, 2014

Johnny Cash, interviewed by Barney Hoskyns, October 1996.  Animation by Patrick Smith of Blend Films for Blank on Blank (PBS Digital).

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Sevastapol

March 29, 2014

Sevastapol

To generations of American musicians “Sevastapol” hasn’t referred to a place in Crimea but to a guitar tuning, also called “Open D” (DADF#AD low to high). Liverpool-born Henry Worrall was teaching guitar at the Ohio Female College in 1855 when he wrote and published a piece commemorating the Siege of Sevastapol in the Crimean War. “Sebastopol: A descriptive fantaisie for the guitar,” specified Open D, and the sprightly march helped spread the tuning.

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Pete Seeger 1919 – 2014

January 29, 2014

Pete Seeger 1919 – 2014

“Pete Seeger, Champion of Folk Music and Social Change, Dies at 94,” Jon Pareles, New York Times

“Pete Seeger (May 3, 1919 – January 27, 2014), Stephen Winick, Folklore Today

“Smithsonian Folkways Remembers Pete Seeger (1919-2014),” Folkways

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Image: 1965 Vega SS-5 Folklore Pete Seeger Longneck 5 String Banjo

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U.S. Judge: Oklahoma Same-Sex Marriage is OK

January 15, 2014

U.S. Judge: Oklahoma Same-Sex Marriage is OK

On Tuesday Judge Terence Kern of the Northern District of Oklahoma ruled that the Sooner State’s amendment banning same-sex marriage is “an arbitrary, irrational exclusion of just one class of Oklahoma citizens from a governmental benefit” and violates the U.S. Constitution.

Don’t order the cake and orange blossoms just yet, though. The ruling is stayed pending appeal, so there won’t be gay nuptials in Muskogee any time soon.

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