His hands clasped themselves over his capacious paunch, his eyes blinked, as if he would have liked to reply kindly to these blandishments (she was seductive but a little nervous) but could not, sunk as he was in a grey-green somnolence which embraced them all, without need of words, in a vast and benevolent lethargy of well-wishing; all the house; all the world; all the people in it, for he had slipped into his glass at lunch a few drops of something; which accounted, the children thought, for the vivid streak of canary-yellow in moustache and beard that were otherwise milk-white. He wanted nothing, he murmured.
virginia woolf, to the lighthouse
Some Chicago Polonia (Polonia is the Polish term for members of an expatriate Polish community) speak Poglish on a daily basis, especially those who have lived there a long time. The most common phenomenon is the Polonization of English words. Instead of saying (in English), “A cop gave me a ticket on the highway,” or (in standard Polish), “Policjant dał mi mandat na autostradzie,” a Polonian might say (in Poglish), ”Kapy dały mi tiketa na hajłeju.” A Polonian attempting to speak this kind of Polish-English melange in Poland would have difficulty making himself understood.
knuckles are weird.
сегодня идет дождь, и завтра, и послезавтра
And now we shall give some account of the things that occurred in our own time and seem worthy of wonder.
About three years before the coming of Lord John into Ireland, it happened that a priest, journeying from Ulster towards Meath, spent the night in a wood on the borders of Meath. He was staying up beside a fire which he had prepared for himself under the leafy branches of a tree, and had for company only a little boy, when a wolf came up to them and immediately broke into these words: ‘Do not be afraid! Do not fear! Do not worry! There is nothing to fear!’
They were completely astounded and in great consternation. The wolf then said some things about God that seemed reasonable.
Gerald of Wales, The History and Topography of Ireland.
It was proof that music had that power over people whether they’re conscious or not. It gets inside of your body, inside your body rhythms, it mixes with your chemistry. Ever since then, I’ve lectured on those subjects. I’ve expanded on that for 40 years. That’s what I deal with: music’s effect on the body, and the ancient tuning systems and how ancient people were aware of these properties. They didn’t have the analytical terms for it, but they knew it existed and they knew how to reach it. So with those forms of teaching, that was how we fit this concept, the modal concept really, of playing.
As soon as I started out, I redefined music. I started in the ABCs and went through everything I ever learned and redefined it. That’s when I started to study the sky; I went into flora and fauna, I was already a historian and a mathematician, so I was just broadening the bases. I composed songs according to principles that I had learned and discovered, so all of my over 500 songs are based on something that I learned. Let’s take Gioseffo Zarlino [1517-90], he was the musical director of St Mark’s Cathedral [in Renaissance Venice] for 25 years. His greatest composition was called Negra Sum which means ‘black is great’ [sic], so I wrote a composition to Zarlino. Vincenzo Galilei challenged his theories and he used his son Galileo Galilei, who was about 17 at the time, to help him construct his arguments against his teacher Zarlino. This was the deviation from the old music laws in Europe, because up to Zarlino’s time they held to include the elements and everything in the music - the stars and all of that, the colours, the time of day - but after that they took it all out of the music. Galileo started the revolution you might say, and Bach probably ended it [laughs] with his Well-Tempered Clavier.
kelan phil cohran, interview with peter shapiro
Astapovo, 3 November 1910
On my way to the place where I wished to be alone I was taken ill…[.]
this is the last letter leo tolstoy ever wrote
Mat is a protean language in which archaic strata mix with modernity. It has a unique ability to break free of its erotic context and to characterize universal human feelings and conditions, to express admiration and contempt, ecstasy and catastrophe. Its words complement and amplify one another. Depending on the intonation, ёб твою мать can mean anything from “I don’t believe it!” to “Fuck off.” The phrase полны пиздец (“the absolute end”) can mean “Everything’s fucked” or “I’m fucked up” and every permutation in between. The meaning of the Russian verb “to fall” (упасть) can be conveyed by three mat forms – ёбнуться (from ёб), пиздануться (from пизда), and хуякнуться (from хуй) – and the Russian ear will catch the subtle distinctions between these different ways of falling.
The world of mat is virtually inaccessible to foreigners studying Russian. It is too situational and semantically capricious, too dependent on ludic intonational subtleties. Mat is linguistic theatre, verbal performance art. It exploits the Russian language’s flexible range of suffixes and prefixes, and toys with phonetically similar words from the standard lexicon in order to generate anthropomorphic images.
Victor Evrofeyev, “The unique power of Russia’s underground language” The New Yorker 15 Sept. 2003
I can presently stop writing. You can presently stop reading.
Leo Tolstoy, W&P, p. 1223 (of 1224)