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New translation, the Magna Carta

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who really said that?

Original, impressive and rememberable sound-bites are not so easy to create. it is not just Barack Obama who plagarises from the speeches of others. The linked article gives a good selevtion. Here is one example:

“In 1940, Churchill's statement to the House of Commons - ''I have nothing to offer but blood, toil, tears and sweat'' - had its 1823 antecedent in Byron's words: ''Year after year they voted cent per cent,/Blood, sweat and tear-wrung millions. . . .'' Byron's precursor was John Donne who said in 1611, ''Mollify it with thy tears, or sweat, or blood.'' ”

related material
Selected quotes by Ronald Reagan, H.L. Mencken, Henry Ford, Adolph Hitler, Rex Stout/Nero Wolfe, George Orwell, Winston Churchill, Donald Rumsfeld. Also General selected quotations.

the web address for the article above is
https://www.abelard.org/news/fun0801.php#who_said_that_210208





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recycled wood art from brazil

A young Brazilian artist recycles the offcuts from the local wood industry to make

giro vazado tactile mandala
  • laminas from strips of dyed wood lamiated together [above - 2m x 1m],
  • esculturas - sculptures,
  • articuladas - articulated forms,
  • tocos - tactile and textured objects [right- 1m diameter]

Images: laradonatonimatana.com

[Click on portifolio button to reach larger buttons for the different art types listed above.
The site text is in Portuguese, but Google offers Portuguese>English translation]

the web address for the article above is
https://www.abelard.org/news/fun0801.php#recycled_wood_120208

oh yuk yuk yuk yuk yuk yuk [2:34 mins]

the web address for the article above is
https://www.abelard.org/news/fun0801.php#cheese_100208

are lions cats? - the auroran sunset

An amusing/interesting video comparing lion behaviour to that of domestic cats.

(The video is all in Japanese, but there is some English text explanation on the linked page. Most of the rest is obvious in the video. It runs for just over 6 minutes.)

the web address for the article above is
https://www.abelard.org/news/fun0801.php#cats_lions_030208

around the world - its metros seen panoramically - the auroran sunset

Ruoholahti station station at Helsinki in Iceland. Credit: Metrorama
Ruoholahti station station at Helsinki in Iceland.

South Ken underground station in London. Credit: Metrorama
South Ken underground station in London.

Villejuif Léo Lagrange Ligne 7 metro station in Paris. Credit: Metrorama
Villejuif Léo Lagrange Ligne 7 metro station in Paris.

Clicking on the images takes you to a larger version at the Métrorama web site. There you can read information on the station concerned in both French and English.

You can read about and see panoramas of roughly forty stations.

The photographer is French, so there are more Paris metro pictures than international ones, but makes for a good way to familiarise yourself for a visit to Paris.

An open source software for producing this sort of image is GIMP.

the web address for the article above is
https://www.abelard.org/news/fun0801.php#metro_panoramas_280108

monster spotting in america - from the auroran sunset

Is looking for special birds, animals, plants or trains too easy for you?

Here’s a 250 page illustrated guide to a new spotter hobby.

“As a monster hunter, you might find yourself out in the woods armed with a rifle loaded with silver bullets. Your friends might already have been dragged off into the woods to be eaten. That is, if you have any friends in the first place; when you go around raving about monsters, people tend not to talk to you.”

Monster Spotter's Guide to North America

Monster Spotter's Guide to North America by Scott Francis
How, 2007

$10.19 [amazon.com] pbk
ISBN-10: 1581809298 /
ISBN-13: 978-1581809299

the web address for the article above is
https://www.abelard.org/news/fun0801.php#monster_spotting_230108

what a lot of balls!

“Such behaviour is unacceptable, it is diabolical” - no fun allowed, says council jobsworth.

Coloured balls ending up in an fountain in Rome. Source: ebayimg.com
Coloured balls ending up in an fountain in Rome. Source: ebayimg.com

Coloured balls from the top of the Spanish Stairs, Rome. Source: tvreporters.it
Coloured balls from the top of the Spanish Stairs, Rome. Source: tvreporters.it

“The cascade of approximately 500,000 multicolored plastic balls filled the city with more color than Michelangelo and DaVinci could have produced in a year.”

“Cecchini claimed this artistic improvisation was a vivid message toward Naples garbage officials.”


[2:47 minute video]
Note the appreciation of the older man amongst the red balls.

the web address for the article above is
https://www.abelard.org/news/fun0801.php#garbage_art_balls_180108

noah tries to build the ark in the p.c.-regulated uk

In the year 2007 the Lord came unto Noah, who was now living in the UK, and said, "Once again, the earth has become wicked and over-populated, and I see the end of all flesh before me.

Build another Ark and save two of every living thing along with a few good humans."

He gave Noah the blueprints, saying, "You have six months to build the Ark before I will start the unending rain for 40 days and 40 nights."

Six months later, the Lord looked down and saw Noah weeping in his yard - but no Ark. "Noah!" He roared , "I'm about to start the rain! Where is the Ar k?"

"Forgive me, Lord," begged Noah, "but things have changed I needed a building permit. I've been arguing with the inspector about the need for a sprinkler system. My neighbours claim that I've violated the neighbourhood zoning laws by building the Ark in my yard and exceeding the height limitations. We had to go to the Development Appeal Board for a decision.

"Then the Department of Transportation demanded a bond be posted for the future costs of moving power lines and other overhead obstructions, to clear the passage for the Ark's move to the sea. I told them that the sea would be coming to us, but they would hear nothing of it.

"Getting the wood was another problem. There's a ban on cutting local trees in order to save the spotted owl. I tried to convince the environmentalists that I needed the wood to save the owls - but no go!

"When I started gathering the animals, an animal rights group sued me. They insisted that I was confining wild animals against their will. They argued the accommodation was too restrictive, and it was cruel and inhumane to put so many animals in a confined space.

"They ruled that I couldn't build the Ark until they'd conducted an environmental impact study on your proposed flood.

"I'm still trying to resolve a complaint with the Human Rights Commission on how many minorities I'm supposed to hire for my building crew. Immigration and Naturalization are checking the green-card status of most of the people who want to work. The trades unions say I can't use my sons. They insist I have to hire only Union workers with Ark-building experience.

"To make matters worse, they seized all my assets, claiming I'm trying to leave the country illegally with endangered species.

"So, forgive me, Lord, but it would take at least 10 years for me to finish this Ark."

Suddenly the skies cleared, the sun began to shine, and a rainbow stretched across the sky. Noah looked up in wonder and asked, "You mean you're not going to destroy the world?"

"No," said the Lord. "The New Labour and the EU beat me to it."

[Source: "JP"]

the web address for the article above is
https://www.abelard.org/news/fun0801.php#noah2uk_090108

something you could easily have lived happily without knowing!

“"When a fly lands on a ceiling, does it execute a barrel roll or an inside loop?" has already been covered by the Straight Dope.

“Answer: The fly grabs the ceiling with its forward legs, and then does a reverse somersault.”

And in detail from Straight Dope:

“[...] while still flying right side up, flies extend their forelegs over their heads till they can grab a landing spot with the suction cups in their feet. Their momentum then enables them to swing their hind legs up, like a gymnast on a trapeze.”

the web address for the article above is
https://www.abelard.org/news/fun0801.php#fly_tumbling_070108


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