Friday, November 12, 2010

sistema macchina della luce d'oro

Nobody has greater respect than I have for your judgment in socks, in ties, and - I will go farther - in spats; but when it comes to evening shirts your nerve seems to fail you. You have no vision. You are prejudiced and reactionary. Hidebound is the word that suggests itself. (Wodehouse, Clustering around young Bingo) | Jan Tschichold was one of the most distinguished typographers of the last century, and has had many admirers, among whom he himself was not the least (S. Carter, "Poor Typists", TLS April 10 2009) | In life a podgy, balding man of middling height, in death he was transformed into a firm-jawed figure eight-feet tall, perched on top of an imposing granite plinth, and surrounded by railings to protect him from the sticky fingers of "mischievous boys and others". | Despite some nervous attempts to blame the local Inuit population, not least by Dickens in a shrilly racist article published in Household Words, the evidence was clear: whether through choice or necessity, the survivors had turned to cannibalism. (R. Douglas-Fairhurst, "Terror to terror", TLS Nov 13 2010) | [...] the "Central Six" that psychologists have categorized: general intelligence, openness to experience, conscientiousness, agreeableness, stability and extraversion. Being able to signal our characteristics is important because the perception by others of those characteristics affects their willingness to join us in all of the encounters and partnerships we undertake [...] So to send a credible signal about their vast earning power, the truly rich have to waste money on baubles whose only merit is their being unaffordable to the poor. To signal their intelligence the brainy may likewise have to do some really pointless and wasteful things (like write sonnets or compose symphonies) that are just too difficult for the unintelligent person to do. That said, natural selection has, over vast stretches of time, trained us to want to do these things, so that sonnets and symphonies...cease to seem so pointless and wasteful. But they are no less baubles for that. (P. Seabright, "Why we walk the dog", TLS Nov 13 2010) | Zur Sühne für eine halbe Schuld (und ich rechne hoch, wenn ich von einer halben Schuld spreche), will sie die ganze tragen, auch vor der Welt, und will sich in jenem romantischen Zuge, der ihr eigen ist, aus ihrem Unglück ein Glück erziehen. | As atonement for her half of the blame (and I am rounding up when I speak of half of the blame) she wants to carry all of it, before the entire world, and, through that romantic inclination peculiar to her, she desires to rear happiness from her misfortune. (Fontane, Schach von Wuthenow)