Monthly Archives: April 2017

My Chakra today 

My Chakra today

My Duck today 

My Duck today

Watch “ASHKENAZY, Beethoven Piano Sonata No.17 in D minor, Op.31-2” on YouTube

Today’s Holiday:Liberation Day (Vietnam)

Today’s Holiday:
Liberation Day (Vietnam)

On April 30, 1975, the Vietnam War officially came to an end as communist North Vietnamese tanks rolled onto the grounds of the Presidential Palace in the South Vietnamese capital city of Saigon. The Vietnamese hold celebrations throughout the month of April that culminate on April 30th, when the entire nation celebrates the final victory in Saigon (now named Ho Chi Minh City). In Ho Chi Minh City, there are military parades featuring marching bands and Vietnam War veterans. Fireworks are shot off to mark the hour when the South Vietnamese government officially surrendered. More…:

Today’s Birthday:Willie Nelson (1933)

Today’s Birthday:
Willie Nelson (1933)

Nelson is an American musician who helped create the blues-rock-country genre known as “outlaw music.” In his five-decade career, he has made more than 200 recordings. In the 1960s, he became a successful songwriter in Nashville but was not recognized for his own singing until he moved back to Texas and adopted the unique image that made him an icon. He is known for raising money to aid farmers and for his generous appearances at benefit concerts. What hit song did he write for Patsy Cline? More…:

This Day in History:Casey Jones Dies on the Cannonball Express (1900)

This Day in History:
Casey Jones Dies on the Cannonball Express (1900)

Jones was an American locomotive engineer whose main claim to fame, until his fateful run on the Cannonball Express, was his punctuality. On April 30, 1900, he was driving the Cannonball Express south on a dangerous, accident-prone run when he suddenly saw a stalled freight train ahead. Instead of jumping to safety, he stayed to slow his train, saving his coworkers and passengers but losing his own life in the process. Who wrote the ballad that immortalized him as a folk hero? More…:

Quote of the Day:Miguel de Cervantes

Quote of the Day:
Miguel de Cervantes

Can there be hope where fear is? More…:

Article of the Day:Forget-Me-Nots

Article of the Day:

Though they belong to a genus with roughly 50 species, most forget-me-nots are small, flat, five-petalled blue flowers with straggly stems. According to legend, the flowers received their name when a medieval knight, picking a posy for his lady by a riverside, fell into the water and drowned under the weight of his armor. As he was drowning, he threw the bouquet to his lover and shouted, “Forget me not!” Christian tradition, however, attributes the flower’s name to what event? More…:

Idiom of the Day:in(to) shape

Idiom of the Day:
in(to) shape

In good, robust health; strong or fit. Watch the video…:

Word of the Day:nosegay

Word of the Day:

Definition: (noun) A small bunch of flowers.
Synonyms: bouquet, corsage, posy
Usage: The wedding was informal and intimate, with the bride wearing a simple white dress and holding a nosegay of daisies.:

who are: Yazidis

Watch “Johnny Cash – Like A Bird On A Wire” on YouTube

Watch “Prokofiev-Romeo and Juliet ☆The World Orchestra ☆Josep Vicent” on YouTube

Watch “Tchaikovsky – Romeo & Juliet – Fantasy Overture” on YouTube

Today’s Holiday:New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival

Today’s Holiday:
New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival

A 10-day feast for the ears, the eyes, and the stomach held in New Orleans, Louisiana, this festival brings together thousands of musicians, artisans, and cooks who do their thing for more than half a million visitors. The concerts feature not only traditional and contemporary jazz, but also other music forms developed in New Orleans: ragtime, country, Cajun, zydeco, gospel, folk, and Latin. Food tents serve a multitude of indigenous foods, such as jambalaya, andouille, crawfish bisque, gumbo, frog legs, and so on. Hundreds of artisans also display their crafts. More…:

Today’s Birthday:Daniel Michael Blake Day-Lewis (1957)

Today’s Birthday:
Daniel Michael Blake Day-Lewis (1957)

The son of a British poet laureate and an actress, Day-Lewis is one of the most respected and critically acclaimed actors today. He is also one of the most selective, working only sporadically and maintaining a low profile between films. The intense method actor has won two Academy Awards for best actor, for 1989’s My Left Foot and 2007’s There Will Be Blood, and is known for his diverse and convincing roles. In 1997, he disappeared and became an apprentice in Italy—in what trade? More…:

This Day in History:Oldsmobile Builds Its Last Car (2004)

This Day in History:
Oldsmobile Builds Its Last Car (2004)

Founded in 1897 by Ransom Olds, Oldsmobile—not Ford—was the first company to mass produce automobiles. After it became part of General Motors in 1908, it shifted to making luxury vehicles. Sales soared in the 1970s and 80s—the Cutlass was the top-selling car in America in 1976—but by the 90s, Oldsmobile had lost its market to other GM divisions. Amid declining profitability, GM discontinued the line in 2004 after 107 years. The first Oldsmobile was the Curved Dash. What was the last? More…:

Quote of the Day:Joseph Conrad

Quote of the Day:
Joseph Conrad

The conquest of the earth, which mostly means the taking it away from those who have a different complexion or slightly flatter noses than ourselves, is not a pretty thing when you look into it. More…:

Article of the Day:Bog Bodies

Article of the Day:
Bog Bodies

Because of their extreme acidity, bogs form a natural preservative and have been found to be a valuable repository of human remains. Over the past two centuries, hundreds of bodies—some of which date back 10,000 years—have been recovered from bogs throughout Europe. These unusually preserved corpses often remain so intact that even intricate details like tattoos and fingerprints can still be distinguished. How did many of the people whose remains have been recovered from the bogs die? More…:

Idiom of the Day:in plain view

Idiom of the Day:
in plain view

In full, unrestricted view; visibly, openly, or publicly. Watch the video…:

Word of the Day:inebriant

Word of the Day:

Definition: (noun) An intoxicant.
Synonyms: alcoholic beverage, intoxicant, alcohol
Usage: He guzzled the inebriant like a thirsty man would water and promptly dropped to the floor with a thud.:

Ottoman Empire: Did you know that modern Turkey has discovered the access to Wikipedia? Another reason for which Turkey must…go!

The Ottoman Empire (;Ottoman Turkish: دولت عليه عثمانیه,Devlet-i ʿAlīye-i ʿOsmānīye;Modern TurkishOsmanlı İmparatorluğu or Osmanlı Devleti), also known as theTurkish Empire, Ottoman Turkey, was an empirefounded at the end of the thirteenth century in northwestern Anatolia in the vicinity of Bilecik and Söğüt by the Oghuz Turkish tribal leader Osman. After 1354, the Ottomans crossed intoEurope, and with the conquest of the Balkans the OttomanBeylik was transformed into a transcontinental empire. The Ottomans ended theByzantine Empire with the 1453 conquest of Constantinople by Mehmed the Conqueror.

Quick facts

During the 16th and 17th centuries, at the height of its power under the reign ofSuleiman the Magnificent, the Ottoman Empire was a multinational, multilingual empire controlling much ofSoutheast Europe, parts ofCentral EuropeWestern Asia, the CaucasusNorth Africa, and the Horn of Africa. At the beginning of the 17th century the empire contained32 provinces and numerousvassal states. Some of these were later absorbed into the Ottoman Empire, while others were granted various types of autonomy during the course of centuries.

With Constantinople as its capital and control of lands around the Mediterranean basin, the Ottoman Empire was at the centre of interactions between theEastern and Western worlds for six centuries. While the empire was once thought to have entered a period ofdecline following the death ofSuleiman the Magnificent, this view is no longer supported by the majority of academic historians. The empire continued to maintain a flexible and strong economy, society, and military throughout the seventeenth and much of the eighteenth century. However, during a long period of peace from 1740 to 1768, the Ottoman military system fell behind that of their European rivals, the Habsburg and Russian Empires. The Ottomans consequently suffered severe military defeats in the late eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries, which prompted them to initiate a comprehensive process of reform and modernization known as the Tanzimat. Thus over the course of the nineteenth century the Ottoman state became vastly more powerful and organized, despite suffering further territorial losses, especially in the Balkans, where a number of new states emerged.The empire allied withGermany in the early 20th century, hoping to escape from the diplomatic isolation which had contributed to its recent territorial losses, and thus joined World War I on the side of the Central Powers.While the Empire was able to largely hold its own during the conflict, it was struggling with internal dissent, especially with the Arab Revolt in its Arabian holdings. Starting before World War I, but growing increasingly common and violent during it, major atrocities culminating ingenocide were committed by the Ottoman government against the Armenians,Assyrians and Pontic Greeks.

The Empire’s defeat and the occupation of part of its territory by the Allied Powersin the aftermath of World War I resulted in its partitioningand the loss of its Middle Eastern territories, which weredivided between the United Kingdom and France. The successful Turkish War of Independence against the occupying Allies led to the emergence of the Republic of Turkey in the Anatolian heartland and the abolition of the Ottoman monarchy and caliphate.

France 24 : Pope heads to Egypt to mend ties with Islam, reassure Christians

Pope heads to Egypt to mend ties with Islam, reassure Christians

In keeping with his inclusive approach to his role, when Pope Francis visits Egypt on Friday he will meet with the head of the most important institution in the Islamic world as well as leaders of the nation’s embattled Christian community.

France 24 : Turkey ‘blocks access to Wikipedia’, says monitoring group

Turkey ‘blocks access to Wikipedia’, says monitoring group

Turkish authorities on Saturday blocked access to online encyclopaedia Wikipedia, an internet monitoring group said, the latest in what government critics say is a crackdown on free speech on the internet.

Watch “Jeff Buckley Hallelujah Lyrics – Leonard Cohen” on YouTube

The “Benefactor” in Le Havre Nikolai Gritsenko (Russian, 1856-1900)oil on panelPrivate Collection 🌟 

The “Benefactor” in Le Havre 

Nikolai Gritsenko 

(Russian, 1856-1900)

oil on panel

Private Collection 🌟 

Watch “Willie Nelson – Are You Sure (With Lyrics)” on YouTube

Watch “Joe Purdy – Wash Away” on YouTube

Blue Moon at Sea

Blue Moon at Sea

Lalele, lalele…

Watch “Where I Stood Missy Higgins lyrics” on YouTube

Today’s Holiday:Buccaneer Days

Today’s Holiday:
Buccaneer Days

During Buccanner Days, the city of Corpus Christi, Texas, by proclamation of the mayor, is under pirate rule. What began in 1938 to honor the discovery of Corpus Christi Bay by Spanish explorer Alonzo Alvarez Pineda in 1519 has become a month-long carnival, calling to mind the days when the settlement was a hideaway for pirates. Pirates sail into town, capture the mayor, and demand revelry throughout the city. Events include a professional rodeo, sailboat regattas, parades, sporting events, concerts, a coronation and ball, and fireworks on the bayfront. More…:

Today’s Birthday:Ulysses S. Grant (1822)

Today’s Birthday:
Ulysses S. Grant (1822)

Though he served with bravery in the Mexican-American War, Grant resigned his post several years later, possibly due to his heavy drinking. However, he returned to serve in the US Civil War and won a string of brilliant victories. Three years after Confederate general Robert E. Lee surrendered to him, ending the war, Grant was elected president. Still, he spent his final years in poverty after being swindled by a friend. Days before his death, he did what to secure his family’s finances? More…:

This Day in History:US President Abraham Lincoln Suspends Habeas Corpus (1861)

This Day in History:
US President Abraham Lincoln Suspends Habeas Corpus (1861)

In law, habeas corpus is a writ ordering that a person be brought before a judge, especially to decide whether a prisoner’s detention is lawful. Its suspension means that prisoners can be held indefinitely without being charged. During the US Civil War, President Lincoln suspended habeas corpus to arrest and silence Southern dissenters. A legal battle ensued, and Lincoln prevailed. How was habeas corpus treated in the Confederacy at this time? More…:

Quote of the Day:John Milton

Quote of the Day:
John Milton

To be blind is not miserable; not to be able to bear blindness, that is miserable. More…:

Article of the Day:Storm Chasing

Article of the Day:
Storm Chasing

Broadly defined as the pursuit of any severe weather condition, storm chasing is an endeavor with motives ranging from thrill-seeking to serious scientific research. Although witnessing a tornado is the primary goal for most storm chasers, many enjoy watching thunderstorms, hail, lightning, and other meteorological events as well. Storm chasers are most active in May and June in the American Great Plains region. Who is generally considered the first storm chaser? More…:

Idiom of the Day:in the pocket of (someone)

Idiom of the Day:
in the pocket of (someone)

Under the direct control or influence of someone or some group. Watch the video…:

Word of the Day:exothermic

Word of the Day:

Definition: (adjective) Releasing heat.
Synonyms: heat-releasing, exothermal
Usage: Scientists use a calorimeter to measure the amount of heat released during an exothermic reaction.:

Watch “Rosi Golan – Been A Long Day (lyrics)” on YouTube

Brunelleschi’s Dome ( Santa Maria del Fiore ) in Florence , Italy with beautiful view in the snow.

Brunelleschi’s Dome ( Santa Maria del Fiore ) in Florence , Italy with beautiful view in the snow.

When it was designed it was the largest in the World and it considered among the most miraculous edifice of Renaissance period and Brunelleschi’s most important achievement

Susur de “Brescioara”

Susur de “Brescioara”

My Chakra today 

My Chakra today

Pe malul Oltului în Făgăraș 

Pe malul Oltului în Făgăraș

Christians leave the Middle East

Micheline's Blog

Wright-WarTerrorismandtheChristianExodusfromtheMiddleEast-690St. George Church in Tanta, Egypt, after a suicide bombing on April 9th.

War, Terrorism, and the Christian Exodus from the Middle East, The New Yorker
by Robin Wright (15 April 2017)

Le Roman de Renart is a mock-epic. It is the underside of the chansons de geste and courtly love. This post excludes courtly literature to concentrate on France’s first and most important chanson de geste, the anonymous Chanson de Roland. Roland, King Charlemagne‘s nephew, and his twelve Paladinswere defeated at the Battle of Roncevaux (778). Roland died.

It has been said that the Chanson de Roland is now forgotten. The Internet tells another story. It is still the subject matter of masterpieces of European literature. As we saw in my last post, Roland is Ludovico Ariosto‘s masterpiece Orlando Furioso. The Chanson de Roland may at times have…

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Christians leave the Middle East!

Portrait of Calvert by John Alfred (from Wikipedia)

Portrait of Calvert by John Alfred VinterPortrait of Calvert by John Alfred Vinter

George Calvert, 1st Baron Baltimore (1579–1632), was a Member of Parliament and laterSecretary of State under King James I. He lost much of his political power after his support for a failed marriage alliance between Prince Charles and the SpanishHouse of Habsburg royal family, and resigned all his offices in 1625 except for his position on the Privy Council. After declaring hisCatholicism publicly, he was created Baron Baltimore in the Irish peerage. He took an interest in the British colonisation of the Americas, at first for commercial reasons and later to create a refuge for English Catholics. He became the proprietor ofAvalon, the first sustained English settlement on the southeastern peninsula of the island of Newfoundland. Discouraged by its cold climate and the sufferings of the settlers, he looked for a more suitable spot and sought a new royal charter to settle what would become the state of Maryland. Calvert died five weeks before the new Charter was sealed, leaving the settlement of theMaryland colony to his sonCecil. His second sonLeonard was the first colonial governor of the Province of Maryland. (Full article…)

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Today’s Holiday:Feria de San Marcos (Fair of St. Mark)

Today’s Holiday:
Feria de San Marcos (Fair of St. Mark)

The Fair of St. Mark, which is held annually for nearly a month in Aguascalientes, dates back to the early 17th century and remains one of Mexico’s most famous fiestas. It is primarily a showcase for the country’s more than 200 forms of ritual and folk dance, each of which has its own meaning, mythology, history, and pageantry. There are also commercial and art exhibits, cockfights, bullfights, sports competitions, parades, and a battle of flowers. More…:

Today’s Birthday:Karel Appel (1921)

Today’s Birthday:
Karel Appel (1921)

Appel was a Dutch painter and sculptor and co-founder of the abstract expressionist group COBRA, whose members hailed from Copenhagen, Brussels, and Amsterdam. Active from 1948 to 1951, the group created work featuring primary colors and spontaneous brushwork. Appel’s own style was characterized by violent color and crude, reductive figures. Later in life, he turned to creating figurative sculptures in wood and metal. What was done to censor Appel’s controversial fresco in Amsterdam City Hall? More…

This Day in History:United Negro College Fund Established (1944)

This Day in History:
United Negro College Fund Established (1944)

Founded in 1944 by Frederick D. Patterson and Mary McLeod Bethune, the United Negro College Fund (UNCF) provides college tuition for African-American students and scholarship funds for its approximately 40 member colleges. Many of its beneficiaries are the first in their families to attend college, and it counts many distinguished individuals among its alumni, including Martin Luther King, Jr. The UNCF motto is one of the most well known slogans in the history of advertising. What is it? More…:

Quote of the Day:George Eliot

Quote of the Day:
George Eliot

Friendships begin with liking or gratitude — roots that can be pulled up. More…: