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Great Video to go with a great song.

Josa Peit has a very expressive face and sweet molasses dripping from her vocal chords!

Whew!

One commenter to this video says it just as succinctly as the most erudite music critic ever could – “Holy Smokes!”

Just listen.

Areni Agbabian

Tigran Hamasyan “Shadow Theater” – The Court Jester Official – YouTube.

Hear more from his latest album Shadow Theater here on YouTube:

The Poet

Road Song

Alternative Universe – Holy Smokes again! Impressive stuff!

 

Another nice piece of Progressive Jazz from the Trio Project with Hiromi Uehara, bassist Anthony Jackson and drummer Simon Phillips.

Anthony Jackson has played with Paul Simon, The O’Jays, Steely Dan and Chick Corea amongst others.

Simon Phillips has played with Toto, The Who, Judas Priest, David Gilmour, Jack Bruce as well as the heart thumping double bass drums of Mike Oldfield’s “Crises” (skip to about 17:00 into the Crises video to hear Simon go mental).

Lovely.

▶ Hiromi The Trio Project performing “Alive” live in the studio – YouTube.

 

Read more about Hiromi at her website: http://www.hiromimusic.com/ .

I’m a Christian, so you will know my opinion about homosexuality – the Bible says it is abhorrent to God, pure and simple – but this article from Australia’s Sydney Morning Herald raises issues which our society must now discuss and resolve, not just on a societal level, but legally as well.

The heading to the article is: Judge compares incest and paedophilia to past attitudes towards homosexuality, claiming they might not be taboo anymore.

I completely disagree with the Judge’s comments in this article, but I also completely understand his train of thought: If we no longer apply Christian morality to homosexuality, what morality should we choose to decide how we approach other forms of sexuality?

If society now says it’s OK for adult people to have consenting homosexual sex, what moral code do we apply to other forms of sexual activity, which were previously dumped into the same category as homosexual sex?

How do we separate sexual activity which most of us find clearly abhorrent from sexual activity which is acceptable to society?

The modern arbiter is not the Christian moral code, but in fact the level of popularity of a sexual activity:

  • With the advent of the 1960s and the free love revolution, consenting adult heterosexual activity outside of marriage came out of hiding and society declared it was OK because everyone was doing it anyway.
  • Our current generation is now declaring that consenting adult homosexual activity is OK because everyone is doing it anyway.

Will incest and paedophilia become acceptable when everyone is doing it anyway?

Paedophilia in varying forms has historically been acceptable in some ancient societies, even continuing to modern society in some regions – see this article about Bacha Bazi, culturally accepted paedophilia in Afghanistan – should the law take the taboo away in this situation because everyone is doing it in this region anyway?

Or, if popularity is not going to be our arbiter, then what form of moral code should we choose, since we have now eschewed the Christian moral code?

I assume that any form of religion-based morality is now off the table, so what are we left with?

Philosophical morality based on ancient philosophical ideals?

Or modern philosophical ideals?

Should we enshrine current cultural morality in law today and use that as our guide?

But most of modern morality is based on religious beliefs – is that acceptable? Do we pick and choose what we want in our culture’s moral code, like putting together the toppings of a home-made pizza?

What happens when society has changed so much that we need to re-visit our morality again in the future? Do we just re-enshrine the morality of that future time and go on doing that into eternity?

If we are going to adopt a roaming morality like this, why have morality at all?

At least with Christian morality, we have a boundary that defines in its own terms what is right behaviour and what is wrong behaviour.

How should a post-religious, or indeed a non-religious society, define its social boundaries and moral codes?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Alida Valli

I watched the end of the “The Third Man” this morning before the World Cup match between Brazil and Colombia.

I was drawn to an actress I’d never heard of before who looked and sounded just like a young Judi Dench.

Alida Valli was an italian actress who gave Hollywood a try – and featured as the murder suspect in The Paradine Case by Alfred Hitchcock – but the expectations placed on her of being the next Ingrid Bergman failed to materialise.

At one stage in her career, she was touted as the most beautiful woman in the world, and in the photos below, you can see why.

 

 

Star Trek Warp Core ambient background noise on a 24hr loop.

It even drifts from the right ear to the left in stereo.

Stupendous!

“I am Philippino” which is apparently what Pinoy Ako means, is the title to this song by Japanese rock band UchuSentai:Noiz.

I reckon on some days, if you were to open my skull and look for my brain, this video is what you might find there instead.

 

 

Quite disturbing.

 

 

Sebastian Faulks has tried his hand at producing a tribute novel in the vein of P.G Wodehouse – Jeeves and the Wedding Bells - and he has brought the effort off very deftly indeed.

The first few pages of Jeeves and the Wedding Bells left me groaning internally, it is not the strongest of beginnings, and had me thinking that Mr. Faulks had come a cropper right from the start. But I resolved to read on and was rewarded with a delightful tale involving Wodehouse’s perennial characters Bertie Wooster and his gentleman’s gentleman, Jeeves.

It doesn’t quite reach the heights of Wodehouse at his best, and you are aware as you read that it isn’t quite the exact pen of the master, but it certainly does a jolly good job at it.

I won’t go into plot lines, because I don’t want to spoil it for you, but I recommend “Jeeves and the Wedding Bells” wholeheartedly to Wodehouse die-hards and newcomers alike.

You can also read a review from the Globe and Mail and a positive mention from the Guardian.

By Jove!

I knew Wodehouse was a good writer, but I didn’t know he was so highly regarded!

When I read Wodehouse, I am filled with delight and when I’m not laughing out loud, my internal monologue is humming with silent mirth at every page.

His use of language is indeed sublime.

 

Stephen Fry on P.G. Wodehouse – YouTube.

 

 

Roman Joke Book

Below is a link to a translated book of Roman  jokes dated from about the fourth or fifth century A.D.

 

http://publishing.yudu.com/Library/Au7bv/PhilogelosTheLaughAd/resources/index.htm

 

 

It has some very satisfying witticisms:

 

“‘That slave you sold me died,’ a man complained to a student dunce. ‘Goodness me,’ he replied, ‘he never did that when I owned him.'”

 

“An Abderite hears that onions and other bulbous plants cause wind. So when he’s out sailing and the sea is calm, he hangs a sackful by the stern.”

 

“A learned Sidonian asks the local schoolteacher how much liquid a two quart flask holds. The answer: Are  you talking about wine or olive oil?”

 

:)

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