Archive for June, 2016

The Third Wonder!

June 30, 2016

I’ve been a fan of “The Piano Guys” for several years now and a couple of years ago they started a “Seven Wonders of the World” series where they would perform at each of the seven wonders.  Well, they’ve done the Great Wall of China as well as Christ the Redeemer; now, they tackle Chichén Itzá.   Still to come: Petra, Machu Picchu, Colloseum, and Taj Mahal.  It is only fitting that at Chichén Itzá they would play the theme from The Jungle Book/Sarabande — very nice indeed.

And while I don’t normally approve of putting anything on the [my] piano, the resting snake is pretty cool even though my phobia for snakes would never allow me to do the same.

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Let’s Pretend!

June 29, 2016

Imagination is a wonderful thing.  I remember countless hours of playing make-believe or “let’s pretend,” with my brothers to pass the time during many a day.  I even tried my hand at acting in an occasional play/dramatic production (elementary school, high school, and junior college).  More recently I’ve been involved in role-playing during training exercises.  And while I have no aspirations to become an actor or pursue this as a career, it has always been a source of just plain fun.  Here are some quotations by true actors on what acting actually is . . . to them.

“What acting really is, is pretending — while you’re pretending you’re not pretending.”  (Ted Danson)

“Acting is all about honesty.   If you can fake that, you’ve got it made.”  (George Burns)

“I love acting.  It’s so much more real than life.”  (Oscar Wilde)

Source: Oxymoronica by Dr. Mardy Grothe

539 Years Ago Today!

June 28, 2016

800px-Peter_Paul_Rubens_-_Descent_from_the_Cross_-_WGA20230Today we celebrate the birth of one of the most famous and successful European artist of the 17th Century — Peter Paul Rubens.    This Flemish Baroque painter was known for his realistic paintings on a variety of subjects including altarpieces, portraits, landscapes, and historical paintings of mythological and allegorical subjects.  One of my favorites: Descent from the Cross (1618) currently residing at the Hermitage Museum.  Rubens himself was influenced by a host of painters from the Renaissance: Caravaggio, Titian, Michelangelo, Pieter Bruegel the Elder.  Rubens had an influence on the following artists: Anthony van Dyck, Diego Velázquez, Eugène Delacriox, Jacob Jordaens, Jean-Antoine Watteau, and Domenico Fetti.

Amazing Adjectives, Number Two!

June 27, 2016

Here are a couple of words that are  both related to berries, just in a different way.

baccivorous

\ bak-siv-er-uh s \, adjective;

1. feeding on berries

“Helen explained that baccivorous game birds living in and over brush were much sweeter to eat that birds living on fish.”

bacciferous

\ bak-sif-er-uh s \, aadjective;

1. bearing or producing berries

“Maine’s bacciferous cranberry vines have established the state as a leading producer of the unique holiday berries.”

Source: http://www.dictionary.com and The Highly Selective Dictionary of Golden Adjectives for the Extraordinarily Literate by Eugene Ehrlich.

Politicians!

June 26, 2016

I ran across a humorous cartoon the other day . . . it showed what appeared to be an elder statesman being followed by a subordinate leaving a committee meeting and passing by a window with a capitol building in the background.  The caption to the comic read: “Sure, people hate politicians.  But remember . . . you’re nobody until somebody loathes you.”

Where Are The Workers?!

June 25, 2016

When it comes to full-time employees, according to a recent Gallup survey, less than half of the American adult population (age 18+) worked at least 30 hours a week in 2015.  Only four States exceeded the 50% threshold, everyone else was below 50% (Oklahoma came in at 43.1% — hmm, closer to the bottom than to the top.)  Here’s the five highest states (of percentage of adults employed full-time) and the five lowest states.

Highest percentage of adults working full-time
1. District of Columbia (57.0%)
2. North Dakota (51.5%)
3. Hawaii (50.6%)
4. Nebraska (50.3%)
5. Minnesota (49.5%)

Lowest percentage of adults working full-time
1.  West Virginia (38.3%)
2. New Mexico (39.2%)
3. Alabama (39.2%)
4. Mississippi (40.5%)
5. Montana (40.6%)

Source: AARP Bulletin, May 2016

Eight Years . . . and Counting!

June 24, 2016

Happy Friday, and Happy Anniversary!  Eight years ago today I started blogging and began my journey with The Gun-Carryin’ Librarian.  This endeavor began as a learning opportunity when I undertook the Special Libraries Association’s “23 Things” self-paced course of study.  I had no idea what blogging was and was quite behind the curve on all things Web 2.0.  And, while I am still not an early adopter when it comes to new things/technology, I’m not completely afraid to try them either (thanks to SLA’s 23 Things).

Over the past eight years, I’ve managed . . .

  • more than 3,080 posts
  • more than 255,000 views
  • more than 39,100 visitors

My most popular date — June 14, 2012 (1,091 views).
My most popular day of the week — Thursdays (18% of views).
My most popular hour of the day — 5:00 PM (8% of views).

 

A True Story!

June 23, 2016

Here is the next installment of poetry generally attributed to Thomas, the sixth Earl of Harrington (circa 1730).  Enjoy!

A True Story

 

One day a tell-tale, waiting maid,
In tears thus to her lady said:
“The cook has vexed me to the heart,
“And if you do not take my part,
“I never can hold up my face,
“Without dishonor and disgrace.”

My lady said,  — “Pray tell your meaning,
“If there is reason for complaining,
“I’ll take your part, you may be certain,
“And give you full revenge on Martin.”

“Madam,” said she, and then she blushed,
“For me, I wish the thing were hushed,
“But I’m afraid it can’t be hid,
“The servants saw what Martin did;
“As by the kitchen fire I stood,
“Thinking, God knows, on nought but good,
“The cook did slyly by me stand,
“And clapped his something in my hand:
“The like I never saw nor felt,
“I’ll have the wicked fellow gelt.”
My lady said, “Run down in haste,
“And send to me the lustful beast.”

The cook came gravely up the stairs,
The lady put on all her airs:
“You saucy villain,” madam said,
“How dare you thus affront my maid?”

Martin with modesty, began,
“Pray tell me madam, what I’ve done?
“Your maids can never complain of me;
“Like lambs your maids and I agree.”

My lady did in wrath reply,
“Can you your wicked deeds deny?
“My meaning you won’t understand,
“What was it you clapped in Betty’s hand?”

“And is this all?” replied the cook;
“Do I for this deserve rebuke?
“I’ll tell the truth, as I’m a sinner,
“I’ve got some partridges for dinner:
“I was in a hurry, yet your maid
“A thousand wanton frolics play’d;
“And since she in my way would stand
“I clapped a partridge in her hand.”

“A likely tale,” my lady said,
“As if  you thought I’d keep a maid,
“So void of wit and common sense,
“As not to know the difference,
” ‘Twixt partridges and standing p——,
“Pray, Martin, leave your foolish tricks,
“Else I shall show you, to your sorrow,
“I’ll make you quit ere to-morrow.”

Although the dame in anger spoke,
Her eyes declared she was in joke:
She was not cruel in her nature,
But was a most obliging creature;
She had a large extensive mind,
And bore good-will to all mankind,
This made her wish she had surveyed
That something mentioned by her maid;
And thought the cook deserved a bribe,
If ’twas as Betty did describe;
And from her soul she longed to know,
If that the thing was really so;
At last resolved to satisfy
Her female curiosity:
The cook was handsome, young and clean,
And though his birth was low and mean,
Yet he might as much love afford,
As any duke or quartered lord;
Away she let all scruples fly,
And was determined she would try.

She smiled, and thus to Martin said,
“Show me, young man, (be not afraid)
“That partridge that you showed my maid.”

The fellow heard her with surprise,
With joy he viewed her wishing eyes,
Her orders readily obeyed;
Transported she the thing surveyed:
She saw her maid had told the truth,
And hugged the ample-gifted youth;
Upon the bed they panting fell,
What more they did I cannot tell.
The dame was young, the fellow strong,
Their pastime did continue long:
Young Martin all his vigor tried,
My lady in all thing complied:
At last he was disabled quite,
And could not give or take delight.

My lady clasped him round the waist,
And smiling, said, “I never did taste,
“though I have been three years a wife,
“So sweet a partridge in my life.
“Farewell dear Martin, Heaven restore you,
“I think I’ve plumed your partridge for you.”

Note: printed on the page following the title page was the following: “from a collection of poems that have been generally ascribed to Thomas, sixth Earl of Harrington. He was the son of Charles, the fifth Earl, and Margaret Lesslie, Countess of Rothes; and fought on the Royal side at the battle of Shirreffmuir, along with his brother John Lesslie, Earl of Rothes, and his own son, Lord Binning. These poems, according to Pinkerton, were printed about 1730, and have been reprinted in 1753, 1765, 1767, and 1777. He was also the author of Mia treatise on forest trees, which has gone through several editions. He died in 1735.” However, if these dates are correct (and I am by no means an expert historian in such matters), these poems could only have been written by either the first or second Earl of Harrington (William Stanhope and W.S. Jr.).

Chicken with a Kick!

June 22, 2016

Here is a quick and easy recipe for spicing up your chicken breasts that I saw being demonstrated on facebook the other day . . .

Mexican Stuffed Chicken

Ingredients
Boneless/skinless chicken breasts (4)
Refried beans
Pepper Jack cheese
Green chiles
Salt and pepper
Nacho cheese taco shells, ground

Directions
1. Butterfly your chicken breats then place each breast between sheets of plastic wrap and pound to 1/4″ thickness.

2. Spread a layer of refried beans over the top of each breast, generously sprinkle with pepper jack cheese, and spread green chiles over the top.  Roll each breast up and secure with toothpicks.

3. Crush/grind the taco shells and place in a shallow pan (9×9 cake pan).  Roll each breast in the crumbs (coat well) and place on a wire rack over a shallow jellyroll pan.

4. Bake at 375 degree for 35 minutes.

Cloudburst!

June 21, 2016

Westfall-cloudburstHere is the next installment of an art purchase (one of several) that I made at this year’s  Tulsa’s Nature Works Wildlife Art Show and Sale.  This piece, an original oil by Christopher Westfall, is entitled “Cloudburst,” was painted in 2015, and measures 21 x 24 (with the frame).  The NatureWorks show this year was as good as ever with many quality artists including several that have been on my wishlist for quite some time: Matthew Higginbotham, Jerry Ricketson, and Kenny McKenna.   This year I was able to remove Matthew and Jerry from the list.  It was extremely satisfying as a collector to finally acquire a painting from an artist(s) that I have been following and hoping to someday collect.    An unintended consequence of attending any art show/sale, I always find an new artist whose work tugs at my heart.  This year it was Virginia Stroud and I was able to acquire her original acrylic entitled “Pure Strength.”