Monthly Archives: October 2017

Today’s Holiday: All Saints’ Day

Today’s Holiday:
All Saints’ Day

In Roman Catholic, Anglican, and many Protestant churches, the first day of November is a celebration of all the Christian saints—particularly those who have no special feast days of their own. Also known as All-Hallomas or All Hallows’ Day, the idea for this holy day goes back to the fourth century, when the Greek Christians kept a festival on the first Sunday after Pentecost (in late May or early June) in honor of all martyrs and saints. More…:

Today’s Birthday: Grantland Rice (1880)

Today’s Birthday:
Grantland Rice (1880)

Born in Tennessee, Rice began his career as a reporter with the Nashville News in 1901 before moving to New York. There, he became known as the “Dean of American Sportswriters.” For decades, he was in charge of selecting the All-American football team for Collier’s magazine. In his widely syndicated column, “The Sportlight,” Rice coined some of sports’ most memorable phrases. What famous quote about winning and losing is derived from one of Rice’s poems? More…:

This Day in History: Shakespeare’s Othello Performed for the First Time (1604)

This Day in History:
Shakespeare’s Othello Performed for the First Time (1604)

First performed at London’s Whitehall Palace, Shakespeare’s Othello—a timeless story of jealousy, betrayal, and racism—is still studied and debated today. The play is likely an adaptation of a short story by Italian writer Cinthio called “Un Capitano Moro” and may have been inspired by certain events of the day—such as the arrival of a Moorish delegation in London in 1600. In Shakespeare’s tale, the protagonist strangles his wife, but in Cinthio’s story, she is killed in what brutal way? More…:

Quote of the Day: John Quincy Adams

Quote of the Day:
John Quincy Adams

My toast would be, may our country always be successful, but whether successful or otherwise, always right. More…:

Article of the Day: The Blue Peacock Nuclear Bomb

Article of the Day:
The Blue Peacock Nuclear Bomb

Blue Peacock was the codename of a British 1950s Cold War defense project that aimed to place several 10-kiloton nuclear mines on the North German Plain in case of war. Fears that cold winter temperatures might prevent the buried bombs from working properly led scientists to propose several solutions, including one that earned it the nickname the “chicken-powered nuclear bomb.” How were live chickens to be used in the operation of this device? More…:

Idiom of the Day: brain surgery

Idiom of the Day:
brain surgery

A task requiring extreme intelligence, skill, or competence, usually used in a negative or rhetorical manner to indicate the opposite. Watch the video…:

Word of the Day: importunity

Word of the Day:

Definition: (noun) Insistent solicitation and entreaty.
Synonyms: urgency, urging
Usage: And to the importunity of their persisted questionings he had finally given in; and so it came to pass that every one now knew the shameful story of his wretched fate.:

France 24 :  At least eight dead in Manhattan ‘act of terror’, says NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio

At least eight dead in Manhattan ‘act of terror’, says NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio

A pickup driver killed eight people in New York on Tuesday, mowing down cyclists and pedestrians, before striking a school bus in the city’s first deadly attack blamed on terror since September 11, 2001.

Eleven others were seriously hurt when the truck driver struck in broad daylight just blocks from the 9/11 Memorial, on the West Side of Lower Manhattan, close to schools as children and their parents geared up to celebrate Halloween.
“This was an act of terror and a particularly cowardly act of terror aimed at innocent civilians, aimed at people going about their lives who had no idea what was about to hit them,” said Mayor Bill de Blasio.
Television networks identified the 29-year-old as an Uzbek citizen living in Florida who had recently been staying in New Jersey, where the truck was rented. President Donald Trump denounced him as “very sick” and a “deranged person.”

BBC News: New York attack: Eight killed by man driving truck

BBC News: New York attack: Eight killed by man driving truck

Allahists are NOT people at all: They are terrorists!: Watch “Multiple Deaths after Muslim Plows Truck into Crowd in Manhattan” on YouTube

Watch “Jacqueline du Pré: previously unpublished intimate interview” on YouTube

Watch “Asterix and Cleopatra 1968 DVDRip Animated” on YouTube

Watch “Asterix and Cleopatra (English)” on YouTube

Salle des Cariatides ” 1550 Artist: Jean Goujon

Detail from the Salle des Cariatides ” 1550
Artist: Jean Goujon
Period: Mannerism ( Late Renaissance)
Musée du Louvre , Paris, France
Stone sculpture

Beautiful songs/lyrics: Watch “Sting – Shape of My Heart (Leon)” on YouTube

Shape of My Heart


He deals the cards as a meditation
And those he plays never suspect
He doesn’t play for the money he wins
He don’t play for respect
He deals the cards to find the answer
The sacred geometry of chance
The hidden law of a probable outcome
The numbers lead a dance
I know that the spades are the swords of a soldier
I know that the clubs are weapons of war
I know that diamonds mean money for this art
But that’s not the shape of my heart
He may play the jack of diamonds
He may lay the queen of spades
He may conceal a king in his hand
While the memory of it fades
I know that the spades are the swords of a soldier
I know that the clubs are weapons of war
I know that diamonds mean money for this art
But that’s not the shape of my heart
That’s not the shape
The shape of my heart
If I told her that I loved you
You’d maybe think there’s something wrong
I’m not a man of too many faces
The mask I wear is one
But those who speak know nothing
And find out to their cost
Like those who curse their luck in too many places
And those who fear are lost
I know that the spades are the swords of a soldier
I know that the clubs are weapons of war
I know that diamonds mean money for this art
But that’s not the shape of my heart
That’s not the shape of my heart
That’s not the shape
The shape of my heart

Songwriters: Dominic Miller / Gordon Sumner
Shape of My Heart lyrics © Sony/ATV Music Publishing LLC, Kobalt Music Publishing Ltd.

France 24 :  US court blocks Trump’s military transgender ban

US court blocks Trump’s military transgender ban

A federal judge temporarily blocked President Donald Trump’s ban on transgender personnel from serving in the US military on Monday.

US District Judge Colleen Kollar-Kotelly ordered the government to “revert to the status quo” that was in effect before Trump ordered the contentious ban.

At the same time, however, she allowed to let stand a block on military funding for sex reassignment surgery for members of the armed forces.

Trump’s predecessor Barack Obama took the historic decision to allow openly transgender troops to serve in the military, a move that was due to go into full effect in July this year.

The new administration announced in June a six-month delay on implementing that ruling. In July, Trump surprised Pentagon leaders by announcing on Twitter a ban on transgender people serving in the armed forces.

“After consultation with my Generals and military experts, please be advised that the United States Government will not accept or allow Transgender individuals to serve in any capacity in the U.S. Military,” Trump tweeted.

“Our military must be focused on decisive and overwhelming victory and cannot be burdened with the tremendous medical costs and disruption that transgender in the military would entail.”

In her ruling, Kollar-Kotelly took issue with Trump’s claims.

“The Department of Defense Working Group, made up of senior uniformed officers and senior civilian officers from each military department, unanimously concluded that there were no barriers that should prevent transgender individuals from serving in the military,” the judge said.

“In short, the military concerns purportedly underlying the president’s decision had been studied and rejected by the military itself.”

Ruling welcomed by rights groups

Trump signed a document in late August ordering the Pentagon to no longer enlist transgender recruits but leaving it to decide the fate of those already serving.

The president also barred federal funds from being used to cover the costs of medical treatment associated with gender reassignment surgery of troops already serving.

He gave the Pentagon until March 23, 2018 to craft a new policy on transgender service members.

The lawsuit against the president’s order was filed by five transgender service members in August, citing the uncertainty that surrounded their future careers.

Estimates about the number of transgender people serving in the US military vary from 1,320 up to 15,000, out of 1.5 million active duty troops.

An attorney for the American Civil Liberties Union, which is battling the ban, predicted that Trump’s moves would face further legal opposition.

“This is the first decision striking down President Trump’s ban, but it won’t be the last,” ACLU senior staff attorney Joshua Block said in a statement.

“The federal courts are recognizing what everyone already knows to be true: President Trump’s impulsive decision to ban transgender people from serving in the military service was blatantly unconstitutional,” Block said.

“We will continue to work to ensure that transgender service members are treated with the equal treatment they deserve.”

The ACLU has filed a separate lawsuit arguing that Trump’s ban violates the constitutional guarantee of equal protection by authorizing discriminatory treatment.

Human Rights Campaign, an LGBT advocacy group, welcomed the judge’s ruling, which is expected to be appealed by the Trump administration.

“Today’s preliminary injunction is an important step in the ongoing efforts to protect transgender service members from the dangerous and discriminatory policies of Donald Trump,” HRC legal director Sarah Warbelow said in a statement.

“Donald Trump’s erratic tweets and half-baked orders disrespect the bravery of the countless transgender people who have fought, and in many cases died, for their country,” Warbelow said.

“We are grateful that a federal judge has blocked this administration from discharging any qualified individuals because of their gender identity while these cases continue to make their way through the courts.”


My Chakra today

My Chakra today

My Chakra today

Nevăxut și necunoscut: Watch “Ni vu ni connu (1957)” on YouTube

Comique est comique: Watch “louis de funès , bourvil…..à la pêche” on YouTube

My Duck today

My Duck today

My Duck today

My birds on the wire today

My birds on the wire today

My birds on the wire today

Today’s Holiday: Apple and Candle Night

Today’s Holiday:
Apple and Candle Night

This is another name for Halloween among children in the Swansea area of Wales. The traditional game of “Apple and Candle” is played by suspending a stick from the ceiling with an apple fastened to one end and a lit candle to the other. The object is to eat the apple without using hands and without getting burned by the swinging candle. To make the game more challenging, players are sometimes blindfolded and the stick is twirled around before the game begins. More…:

Today’s Birthday: John Evelyn (1620)

Today’s Birthday:
John Evelyn (1620)

From 1631 until his death in 1706, Evelyn kept a diary that is today an invaluable source of information on 17th-century British social, cultural, and political life. He corresponded frequently with Samuel Pepys, another now-famous diarist of the time. Living as a wealthy country gentleman in Deptford, he wrote about 30 books on various subjects including reforestation, vegetarianism, and numismatics. In 1661, he wrote the Fumifugium, believed to be the first book written on what topic? More…:

This Day in History: Leiden University Library Opens in the Netherlands (1587)

This Day in History:
Leiden University Library Opens in the Netherlands (1587)

The city of Leiden played a prominent role in the revolt that would create an independent Dutch nation. In 1575—a year after Leiden had survived a siege by the Spanish—Prince William the Silent founded a university in the city. Today, Leiden University is the oldest in the Netherlands. Its library, once housed in a single room, is now home to a monumental collection of books, manuscripts, maps, and letters—some of which are centuries old and very rare. What was the library’s first book? More…:

Quote of the Day: Jane Austen

Quote of the Day:
Jane Austen

I pay very little regard…to what any young person says on the subject of marriage. If they profess a disinclination for it, I only set it down that they have not yet seen the right person. More…:

Article of the Day: Onsen

Article of the Day:

A volcanically active country, Japan is home to thousands of geothermally heated hot springs called onsen. Traditionally used as public bathing places, onsen now play a central role in domestic tourism and are often enjoyed by those who want to escape the hectic life of the city, relax, and benefit from the healing powers believed to be derived from the water’s mineral content. When discussing onsen, the Japanese often cite the virtues of “naked communion,” which refers to what? More…

Idiom of the Day: bragging rights

Idiom of the Day:
bragging rights

The authority and freedom to boast or brag of one’s achievements that comes from having won a contest or succeeded in some way, especially against a close rival. Watch the video…:

Word of the Day: despairing

Word of the Day:

Definition: (adjective) Characterized by or resulting from despair; hopeless.
Synonyms: desperate
Usage: The set-back to their hopes made them despairing and desperate.:

Watch “Cry me a river – Julie London” on YouTube

Audiobooks forever: Watch “The Big Sleep | Novel by Raymond Chandler | Audiobook full” on YouTube

France 24 :  Trump’s ex-campaign chief Manafort indicted on 12 counts, including conspiracy

Trump’s ex-campaign chief Manafort indicted on 12 counts, including conspiracy

President Donald Trump’s former campaign chairman, Paul Manafort, and a former business associate, Rick Gates, were indicted Monday on charges of conspiracy against the United States, money laundering and several other financial charges.

France 24 : Atmospheric levels of CO2 hit record high in 2016, UN says

Atmospheric levels of CO2 hit record high in 2016, UN says

The concentration of carbon dioxide (CO2) in the atmosphere has hit a new high, the UN said Monday, warning that drastic action is needed to achieve targets set by the Paris climate agreement.

Watch “Cat Steven – Father and Son, Live – 1971” on YouTube

Watch “How Mercury Causes Brain Neuron Degeneration – University Of Calgary” on YouTube

Everliving music: Watch “Complete Beethoven Piano Sonatas – Claudio Arrau” on YouTube

Everliving music : Watch “Fischer/Mendelssohn Violin Concerto in E Minor, Op. 64/Myung Whun Chung/Festival de Saint Denis.” on YouTube


Everliving music: Watch “”Sibelius: Symphony No.5 Leonard Bernstein Sibelius, Symphonie Nr 5 Es Dur op 82 Leonard Bernstein” on YouTube

Watch “Bird on a wire-Perla Batalla_ Special_Features “I’m Your Man”” on YouTube

Watch “André Rieu – Feed the Birds (Live in Amsterdam)” on YouTube

You don’t ever have to feel guilty…

You don't ever have to feel guilty...

You don’t ever have to feel guilty…

Today’s Holiday: American Royal Livestock, Horse Show and Rodeo

Today’s Holiday:
American Royal Livestock, Horse Show and Rodeo

Also known as the American Royal, or simply the Royal, this is the oldest, and one of the largest, livestock shows and rodeos in the United States, dating back to the period just after the Civil War. The main events occur in October and November. The American Royal Rodeo is the final rodeo of the season on the professional circuit, featuring over 700 professional riders and offering more than $100,000 in prize money. There are also livestock auctions, horse and livestock shows, country music concerts, barbecue competitions, and a parade through downtown Kansas City. More…:

Today’s Birthday: Angelica Kauffmann (1741)

Today’s Birthday:
Angelica Kauffmann (1741)

Swiss-born painter Angelica Kauffman studied art in Italy as a child. She was a protégée of Joshua Reynolds, who took her to London in 1766. Two years later, Reynolds became the first president of the Royal Academy and Kauffman one of the founding members. She became known for her decorative work and her portraits of female sitters. Returning to Italy, she flourished in artistic and literary circles. In 1775, how did a fellow member of the Royal Academy ridicule her and Reynolds in a painting? More…:

This Day in History: Henry VII Is Crowned King of England (1485)

This Day in History:
Henry VII Is Crowned King of England (1485)

As a noble from the House of Lancaster, Henry fled England when the rival House of York triumphed in 1471. He later returned, rallied his supporters, and defeated Richard III in 1485. He then married Elizabeth of York and ended the Wars of the Roses between the two houses. Plots against him persisted, and two years later, Yorkists rebelled in support of Lambert Simnel, a boy they claimed was the Earl of Warwick. The rebellion was crushed by Henry’s forces. What did Henry do with young Lambert? More…:

Quote of the Day: Jane Austen

Quote of the Day:
Jane Austen

There certainly are not so many men of large fortune in the world as there are pretty women to deserve them. More…:

Article of the Day: Charles Darwin’s Illness

Article of the Day:
Charles Darwin’s Illness

For much of his adult life, Charles Darwin was afflicted by an illness or illnesses whose uncommon combination of symptoms affected him intermittently and left him severely debilitated for long periods of time. The list of symptoms is quite extensive and includes vertigo, cramps, tremors, eczema, vomiting, and anxiety. Recently, there has been an increase in speculation about the nature of his condition, yet it remains a mystery. What are some explanations that have been proposed over the years? More…:

Idiom of the Day: bottom of the ninth

Idiom of the Day:
bottom of the ninth

The final and critical moment or moments of a tense, important, or desperate situation. It refers to the ninth inning of baseball, the “bottom” of which is batted by the home team as their last chance to win the game. Primarily heard in US, South Africa. Watch the video…:

Word of the Day: unprejudiced

Word of the Day:

Definition: (adjective) Free from undue bias or preconceived opinions.
Synonyms: impartial
Usage: I claim to be an absolutely unprejudiced witness.:

BBC News: Trump rages on Twitter at Clinton and Russia inquiry ‘witch hunt’

I saw this on the BBC and thought you should see it:

Trump rages on Twitter at Clinton and Russia inquiry ‘witch hunt’ –

Is it possible that all Putin wanted was to give peace in Siria a chance, after the total fiasco of the Democratic party with the involvement in the arab spring, the raise of ISIS and their failure to adress the Iran nuclear crisis?

If yes: we welcome the change in regime and direction on which America moves post Obama/Clinton again: total fiasco!

Halloween: as portrayed by Wikipedia

“MOSAIC” of Harborland in Kobe, Hyogo prefecture, Japan

Halloween este o sărbătoare de origine celtică, preluată astăzi de multe popoare din lumea occidentală, ea răspândindu-se în secolul al XIX-lea prin intermediul imigranților irlandezi dinStatele Unite ale Americii. Este sărbătorită în noaptea de 31 octombrie, deși în unele țări data sărbătorii variază — de exemplu, în Suedia este sărbătorită în prima sâmbătă din noiembrie. Numele provine din limba engleză, de la expresia All Hallows’ Even, numele sărbătorii creștine atuturor sfinților, sărbătoare cu care Halloweenul a devenit asociat în țările unde predomină creștinismul occidentalcatolic șiprotestant, deoarece în aceste culte creștine ziua tuturor sfinților este sărbătorită pe 1 noiembrie.

Pentru alte sensuri, vedețiHalloween (dezambiguizare).

Mai multe informații: Altă denumire, Sărbătorită de …

Specific pentru Halloween este dovleacul sculptat care reprezintă Lanterna lui Jack. Cu ocazia acestei sărbători copiii se maschează în vrăjitori, mumii sau alte personaje și colindă pe la case întrebând „Trick or Treat?”(Păcăleală sau dulciuri?), ca o amenințare că dacă nu li se dau dulciuri, persoanei colindate i se va juca o farsă. În alte țări Halloween este serbat prin parade și carnavaluri.


Articole principale: Sărbătoarea Tuturor Sfinților și Samhain.

Sărbătoarea pe care o cunoaștem sub numele de Halloween a fost influențată, de-a lungul secolelor, de numeroase culturi. În Imperiul Roman era Ziua Pomona, la celtici era festivalul Samhain, iar la creștini Sărbătoarea Tuturor Sfinților.

Istoricul Nicholas Rogers, care a cercetat originile Halloweenului, observă că în timp ce „unii folcloriști i-au detectat originile în sărbătoarea romană aPomonei, zeița fructelor și semințelor, sau în festivalul morților denumit Parentalia, sărbătoarea este cel mai frecvent legată de festivalul celtic Samhain, scris inițial Samuin”. Numele provine din irlandeza veche și înseamnă „sfârșitul verii”.

Snap-Apple Night de Daniel Macliseprezentând o petrecere de Halloween în Blarney, Irlanda, în 1832

Festivalul Samhainsărbătorește sfârșitul „jumătății luminoase” a anului și începutul „jumătății întunecate” și este, uneori,considerat a fi „Anul Nou Celtic”.

Vechii celți credeau că granița dintre lumea aceasta și cea de dincolo se slăbește în ziua deSamhain, permițând spiritelor, bune sau rele, să o traverseze. Strămoșii familiei erau cinstiți și invitați acasă, în timp ce spiritele rele erau gonite. Se crede că nevoia de a îndepărta spiritele rele a dus la purtatul de costume și măști. Ei îndepărtau spiritele rele deghizându-se ei înșiși în spirit rău pentru a le evita. În Scoția rolul spiritelor era jucat de tineri îmbrăcați în alb cu fețele mascate sau înnegrite. Samhain era o vreme când se făceau provizii de iarnă și se tăiau animalele pentru a păstra carnea peste iarnă. Focurile de tabără jucau și ele un rol în festivități. Toate celelalte focuri erau aprinse de la focul cel mare. Oasele animalelor tăiate erau și ele aruncate în foc. Uneori se aprindeau două focuri unul lângă altul, iar oamenii și animalele treceau printre ele ca ritual de purificare.

Următoarea influență a apărut o dată cu răspândirea noii religii creștine în Europa. În anul 835, Biserica Romano-Catolică a transformat ziua de 1 noiembrie într-o sărbătoare creștină, care celebrează toți sfinții. Aceasta era Sărbătoarea Tuturor Sfinților, sau Hallowmas, sau All Hallows.

Numele de „Halloween” și multe dintre tradițiile actuale provin din perioada veche engleză.

Originea numelui

Termenul Halloweenreprezintă o variantă scoțiană a denumirii All-Hallows-Even („evening”), adică noaptea de dinainte de „All Hallows”. Până în secolul al XX-lea era scrisă și „Hallowe’en”, eliminând „v”-ul și scurtând cuvântul. Deși sintagma All Hallows apare în engleza veche (ealra hālgena mæssedæg, „sărbătoarea tuturor sfinților”), conformOxford English Dictionary(ediția a doua) de la Oxford University Press, All-Hallows-Even a fost atestată abia la 1556.


Jack-o’-lanterns în Kobe, Japonia

Simbolurile și obiectele artizanale asociate Halloweenului s-au dezvoltat în timp. De exemplu, sculptarea de jack-o’-lantern provine din obiceiul de Ziua Tuturor Sfinților de modelare a unor felinare din napi pentru luminarea sufletelor dinpurgatoriu. Napul era folosit tradițional de Halloween în Irlanda și Scoția, dar imigranții veniți în America de Nord au folositdovleacul indigen, care erau mai ușor accesibili și mai mari – fiind mai ușor de modelat decât napii.Tradiția americană de modelare a dovlecilor este atestată de la 1837 și a fost asociată inițial cu vremea recoltei, nefiind specifică Halloweenului decât spre sfârșitul secolului al XIX-lea.

Imaginile de Halloween provin din multiple surse, inclusiv din obiceiurile naționale, operele literare de ficțiune gotică șihorror (cum ar fi romaneleFrankenstein și Dracula), și din filmele horror clasice (caFrankenstein și Mumia).Printre primele lucrări despre Halloween se numără cele ale poetului scoțian John Maynedin 1780, care menționa farsele jucate la Halloween;What fearfu’ pranks ensue!, precum și supranaturalul asociat cu noaptea, Bogies(fantome), influențându-l peRobert Burns, autorul poezieiHalloween din 1785.Elemente ale toamnei, cum ar fi dovlecii, cocenii de porumb și sperietorile de ciori sunt și ele omniprezente. Casele sunt și ele decorate cu aceste simboluri.

Printre alte imagini de Halloween se numără temelemorții, răului și ocultului, sau monștrii legendari. Culorile tradiționale ale sărbătorii sunt negru și portocaliu.


Articol principal: Colindatul de Halloween.

„Trick-or-Treat for UNICEF”

UNICEF-ul are și el un cuvânt de spus în toată mișcarea Trick-or-Treat. În America de Nord, „Trick-or-Treat for UNICEF” a devenit o tradiție în perioada de Halloween.„Mișcarea” a început ca un eveniment local în anul 1950 într-o suburbie din orașulPhiladelphia și s-a extins pe plan național până în 1952.În America este bine cunoscută „micuța cutie portocalie”. Pentru o perioadă de timp, cutiile se distribuiau în școli și astfel copiii care mergeau la „colindat” strângeau bani, împreună cu tradiționalele dulciuri, de la cei care voiau să doneze. UNICEF a dat drumul și la un trick-or-treat online, însoțit și de un bal mascat, tot virtual. Endorserul campaniei a fost Heidi Klum împreună cu familia ei.


Costumele de Halloween sunt tradițional modelate după figurile supranaturale, monștri, schelete, fantome, vrăjitoare și diavoli. De-a lungul timpului, printre costumele folosite apăreau și cele ale unor personaje fictive, celebrități la ordinea zilei și arhetipuri generice, cum ar fi prințesele sau luptătorii ninja.

Costumarea și colindatul cu ele era de actualitate în Scoția de Halloween la sfârșitul secolului al XIX-lea.Tradiția a pătruns și în Statele Unite la începutul secolului al XX-lea, atât în rândul adulților cât și în rândul copiilor. Primele costume de Halloween produse în masă au apărut în magazinele americane în anii 1930 când obiceiul de trick-or-treating devenea popular acolo.

În ziua de 31 octombrie sau în preajma ei, adesea în vinerea și sâmbăta dinainte de Halloween, se țin adesea petreceri cu costume.

Jocuri și alte activități for more here