Terry Jones 1.2.42 – 20.1.20

23/01/2020

Monty Python star Terry Jones has died.

… Jones was born in Colwyn Bay and went on to study at Oxford University, where he met his future Python pal Palin in the Oxford Revue – a student comedy group.

Alongside Palin, Idle and the likes of David Jason, he appeared in the BBC children’s satirical sketch show Do Not Adjust Your Set, which would set the template for their work to come with Python.

He wrote and starred in Monty Python’s Flying Circus TV show and the comedy collective’s films, as a range of much-loved characters. These included Arthur “Two Sheds” Jackson, Cardinal Biggles of the Spanish Inquisition and Mr Creosote.

He also directed their film The Holy Grail in 1975, with fellow Python Terry Gilliam, and took sole directorial charge of 1979’s Life of Brian and The Meaning of Life in 1983. . . 

 


Best last lines, English good and bad and the best paper plane

19/04/2011

The American Book Reviews 100 best last lines from novels opened the discussion with Jim Mora on Critical Mass today.

Some lines and phrases were familiar although I hadn’t read the books, for example:

Number 8:

  ‘It is a far, far better thing that I do, than I have ever done; it is a far, far better rest that I go to than I have ever known.’ –Charles Dickens, A Tale of Two Cities (1859)

Number 77:

“Vaya con Dios, my darklin’, and remember: vote early and vote often, don’t take any wooden nickels, and”—by now I was rolling about helplessly on the spare-room floor, scrunched up around my throbbing pain and bawling like a baby—“always leave ’em laughin’ as you say good-bye!” –Robert Coover, The Public Burning (1977).

And at 77:

 “Tomorrow, I’ll think of some way to get him back. After all, tomorrow is another day.” –Margaret Mitchell, Gone with the Wind (1936)

 Was she the first to use the phrase tomorrow is another day?

The next website (for which I offer a hat tip to Political Dumpground) we discussed was Dear Blank, please blank:

It was designed and built by Jared Wunsch, and Hans Johnson and, if you believe what they write on the about page, it’s moderated by Jared’s cat Louie.

It allows people to pithy one-line letters such as:

Dear spellcheck,

If you have no spelling suggestions for a particular word, please don’t say that it is misspelled.

Sincerely, I have no time for your nonsense, this paper is due in an hour.

 Dear art teacher,

No, my canvas is not empty, I was painting with all the colours of the wind.

Sincerely, Pocahontas fan.

Dear Internet connection,

This whole “playing hard to get” strategy isn’t doing it for me.

Sincerely, frustrated.

Dear iPhone,

Thank you for giving meaning to my life.

Sincerely, fingerless gloves.

Dear purple grape,

BREATHE!

Sincerely, green grape.

 Dear Green grape

You’re just jealous.

Sincerely, purple grape.

Dear Americans,

If you like our accents so much, why didn’t you keep them?

Sincerely British people.

Apropos of matters British, Jan Freeman responded to the outrage over the inclusion of initialisms in the OED. (Jan has a website throw grammar from the train – notes from a recovering nit picker)

And Stephen Fry pays lyrical homage to P.G. Wodehouse in  What Ho My Hero in the Independent.

Then for something different in creative work avidiance (with a hat tip to Larvatus Prodeo): how to build the best paper airplane in the world.


Quite Interesting

01/11/2009

Deborah  at In A Strange Land  posts on QI – (for Quite Interesting) the British TV quiz show presided over by Stephen Fry.

You can test yourself with the sort of questions they ask with a quite interesting quiz.

The first time I came across it, a few weeks ago, I scored only 9/20.

Today I got 19/20 – I’d remembered a few answers I’d got wrong the previous time but the rest were lucky guesses.


August 24 in history

24/08/2009

On August 24:

79: Mount Vesuvius  erputed.

1591 English poet Robert Herrick was baptised (Date of birth not known).


Robert Herrick, illustration based on Hesperides impression.

1875 Captain Matthew Webb became the first person to swin the English Channel.

1878 Wellington’s steam-tram service opened.

1891 Thomas Edison patented the motion picture camera.

1899 Argentinean write Jorge Luis Borges was born.

 

1932 Amelia Earhart flew solo across the Atlantic, the first woman to do so.


Amelia Mary Earhart c. 1935

1936 English noelist A.S. Byatt (Dame Antonia Susan Duffy) was born.

1947 Brazilian writer Paulo Coelho was born.

 

1957 English comedian and actor Stephen Fry was born.

Sourced from Wikipedia & NZ History Online.


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